Mina is a precious little girl recently rescued from an orphanage in Eastern Europe who is now finally home with her forever family! She had been without a mother or father to love her & care for her each day. No one to rock her, kiss her gently or tell her she's loved. She is blessed with an extra chromosome known as Down syndrome, which for her that meant a life of being viewed as worthless in the country she was born into & a life without hope. Because of this her parents gave her up at the age of 6 months when they found out the diagnosis & from there her life progressivly went down hill. We are the Gower family residing in OKC who recently adopted this little angel. She was extremely malnourished and unable to do just about anything when we first met her. She will be 2 in January & is the size of a 3-6 month old weighing 14lbs. She continues to amaze us at how quickly she is progressing with love and nutrition. She has learned to sit up, roll over, feed herself finger foods, hold her own bottle and loves to interact with toys and other children. Her life has changed so much in such a short period of time and will forever be changed! Thank you Lord for putting a burden on our hearts to rescue this little blessing and making her apart of our family!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Sundays Castle Visit!

We went to see a castle (or they call it fortress.)  I would like to tell you where it was but don’t know how to say it or spell it in English. So here is the best Ukrainian spelling with my English keyboard KAM*RHEUb (the R is backwards and of course some of the letters look a little different.) It is about an hour and a half from Khmelnitsky. We left around 8:15 and didn’t arrive till a little after 10 because the main street was closed leaving Khmelnitsky and several of the roads were blocked off. They told our driver it was because of a bad accident but I’m not so sure he believes that was the case. We had to try 3 different routes to get out of the town and each way came to a police road block until the very last route left to try. It was neat though because we got to see a lot more of the country side, houses, animals everywhere… and I mean everywhere. The entire drive you would see animals here and there on the side of the road. We saw cows, horses, goats, lots of chickens, dogs and cats. They just wander and do their own thing.
Once we made it to the castle we found out that they did not have any English speaking guides there today so we walked to a restaurant to eat lunch while Rostik called around until he found an English speaking guide. She met us and took us around the town. Her English wasn’t very good and I don’t think she does tour guides very often. Jim and I honestly just wanted to ask if we could just pay her and she could go ahead and go so we could just look around but we didn’t want to be offensive. The guide took around 3 hours and most the time was us walking to one place and her struggling to find the right words to explain to us. Rostik our driver even ended up having to translate for her a lot and help her out to explain things to us. We don’t really feel like we learned or understood much from the guide but enjoyed the experience of the town. Rostik has taken many families to the castle but never had a tour guide… I think he learned a few things so that was good. He will know more to be able to tell the next families he takes.
The town is very neat. Lots of history there. She was telling us about the battles and how the city and castle is surrounded by water (rivers in a U shape) and that if any armies were coming to attack they could lower a wall of some sort to let the water rise and fill up the rivers. There is also holes all along the stone walls and surrounding the castle where army men would be on watch with their weapons. She said that the castle was later used as a prison and then later turned into a museum.

Dungeon area where they said people where thrown in and left to die unless someone could pay bail to get them out.

These torn up car road signs are all over the highway. Rostik says they are to remind people not to drive crazy on the curvy roads because lots of people have accidents by doing stupid things and they need these as a reminder.

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