Up a little earlier than normal this morning to be at the orphanage at 9:15am. We arrived about 10 minutes early and sat in the lobby. It felt weird, being at the orphanage, but not seeing Mila. I wanted nothing more than to run upstairs and kiss her cheeks, but I knew that a quick 10 minute visit would only confuse and possibly stress her out.
We packed into the car and headed down the road to Lyjg (I think...) and met the director of social care for the region and the lawyer for the center. After a nice chat, a drink, and some Turkish candies, we got back in the car and headed to Mionica, where Mila's parents reside to do our adoption ceremony. There we met with Mila's legal guardian and another lady who I think they said was an educator.
In the background is the building where we had our ceremony. We were waiting to walk over.
We were read some statutes in the Serbian law about adoption of a child, then were read the adoption decree stating from this day forward Douglas Allen and Cara Marie Layne are now the parents of the said minor. From this day on, the said minor's name will be Mila Layne. A surprise, we had Mila's birthday wrong. In Europe, they place the day before the month. So instead of having a February 4th birthday, she has an April 2nd birthday!!! :)
Something that is an adjustment for us in Serbia--meals are events. In America, you go to a restaurant, order, and the restaurant expects to serve many people that night at the table you are sitting at. Both last night and today, meals can take 2-3 hours. And they talk about how large portion size is in America, but they are just as large (or larger) in the Balkins. We had two types of bread, appetizers & vegetables (which they called starters) and mixed grill-- which was all different kinds of yummy meats.
Mixed grill. They make food look very fancy! The chicken wrapped in bacon was my favorite. Doug liked the smoked sausage.
We arrived back in Belgrade around 6:00pm. What a day! We walked to the pedestrian zone again tonight, hoping to wake us up a little because 7:00pm is too early for bed!
Tomorrow morning we can go to the orphanage and pick up our daughter! YEA! I can't wait. We are grateful to the staff of the orphanage for all the care they have given Mila for the first three years of her life. Somehow "thank you" just doesn't seem adequate. Now I just have to choose which outfit to take for her to wear when we "spring" her. Maybe her daisy outfit??