Katya, who you can see here, delivered (by C-section) today, a very healthy baby boy. Ivan Alexandrovich (or Vanya for short) was born earlier today weighing in at just a little over nine pounds! At that weight, I guess he’ll be walking in just a few weeks.
A few more details can be found on The Stamey’s Blog. Please be in prayer for Sasha and Katya as they begin this new phase of their life as first-time parents.
The old saying goes “a picture is a worth a thousand words” so that would make the Moscow 2006 pictures equivalent to about a 191,000 word essay. What’s worse is that I hand picked those out of more than 900 photos, of which about 720 of those I took myself.
We made it home safely last night. We were about 45 minutes late departing Atlanta to get to Charlotte thanks to the mess the rain caused, but still made it in safely. Thanks everyone for your warm wishes and prayers. We’ll both be blogging details soon enough, but we’re spending today getting caught up on laundry and sort of “decompressing” while we process the prior 11 days.
We’ve made it a little past the halfway point of our trip and it has been amazing already. Joy recovered rather quickly from her sickness and there haven’t really been any incidents since. We’ve spent the past two days prayer walking and distributing some literature in our region and a neighboring region. Things are just going really well and we can all really feel your prayers. Our cards and letters from home are always welcome whenever Jeremy says “mail time!” We even had a letter from Java today (I think Kelly helped her type it). I had my first real Russian meal on Saturday night and it actually went pretty well. I ate some things I never thought I would eat and held it down and it was actually not so bad.
So, keep praying folks – God is really working through our team. Tomorrow we take a day off and do some touring and sight-seeing and then we head out Thursday morning to spend a day and a half at an orphanage about four hours outside the city.
A million thanks to Brad and Lori for all their kindness!
I have a just a few minutes and I’ve been awake for more than 30 hours now, so I’ll have to make this brief. The flight was uneventful and extremely smooth. We had about 80 or 90 empty seats on the 767, so we were able to spread out and I got myself an exit row all to myself!
Our friend Joy is sick and currently back at our hotel all alone. Everyone please be in prayer for her that she would feel much better tomorrow. The trip is off to a great start thanks to everyone’s prayers. Please keep it up!
This afternoon, Bonnie and I will be making our final preparations for our trip to Moscow and begin packing. About 48-hours from now, we will be arriving at the airport in Charlotte, checking in at the Delta counter, and going through the various security screenings associated with preparing for an international flight. After that, we’ll have roughly an hour to mill around the airport concourse, snack, relax, and breathe our last bit of North Carolina air for a while. Then we’ll board the Douglas MD-88 for our short trip to Hartsfield-Jackson/Atlanta International Airport. Once we arrive there, we have a two-hour layover, which should be more than enough time to make it from our domestic arrival terminal, B9, to our terminal for international departures, E17 and have lunch somewhere at the airport. Finally, at 3:55 PM, we will take off in our Boeing 767-300ER and proceed to stay cramped up in it for the duration of the 10.5-hour flight to Sheremetyevo. Our local arrival time is 10:35am – or 2:30am Eastern Standard Time. I’ve already posted our full itinerary, so refer to that if you want to know exact travel times and flight information.
At this point, we will have been awake approximately 20 hours – and there is no rest in sight. In order to fight jet lag, we’ll be forced to stay awake and in lieu of going to the hotel and collapsing, we’ll instead be traveling around Moscow, seeing Red Square, The Kremlin, Lenin’s Mausoleum, and who knows what else. We will probably end Friday a bit “early” – around 7:00PM (11:00am EST on 10/6) and get settled in to our rooms at the 24-story Hotel Molodyozhny.
I really can’t wait until Friday morning. I’m ready to be in Russia. While it’s no where near what I would call a vacation, it will still be a very rejuvenating and relaxing time, amongst all the busy-ness. I’ve arranged for Matt to post on this blog while we are away with the email updates that Brad and Lori will be sending out. If you want to receive those emails directly just say so by leaving a comment here (with your email address in the “email” box) and I’ll pass the addresses on to Lori. You might also wish to bookmark the Stamey’s Blog and check there for updates.
Do svidanja! (Phonetically: dahs-vuh-danya) or Goodbye!
For anyone interested in following our travel, I’ll post the flight itinerary here for you. If you would be so kind, take a few moments and pray over these specific flights, and if you’re awake, even at the specific times we take off/land an such.
USA to Moscow – Thursday, October 5
Distance: 227 miles
Distance: 5380 miles
Total travel time: 14h25m
Moscow to USA – Monday, October 16 (Happy Birthday Bonnie!)
Distance: 5380 miles
Distance: 227 miles
Total travel time: 16h20m
Our mission trip lodging budget was blown out of the water over the weekend. The hotel where we stayed last time has changed their room configurations (they finally figured out they were losing money by letting five people stay in one room!), therefore our hotel expenses just increased by nearly $1,600. According to our team leader, we do *have* the money, but it was allotted to pay our interpreters and buy supplies for our ministry work while we’re there.
If anyone has a few spare dollars laying around and want to make a contribution, get in touch! Every nickel counts.