Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Going to Ukraine

I know, I know. We fell off the face of the planet for a little while. I started to tell the story of how our family came to be and two installments into things, I disappeared. There have been lots of changes happening with work, school, and family and we've had to make adjustments. Add to that the fact that both laptops died within a week of one another and the ability to blog came in at the bottom of our "to-do" list. But with a few days left in holiday break, I wanted to let you know what's going on.

Those of you on our mailing list, or those who were able to read the previous post with our newsletter, already know about the upcoming trip to Ukraine. We are very excited about the possibility of Robert traveling to Eastern Europe in less than a month. If things work out, he will be leaving with Matthew Nasekos on January 17th. The Nasekos adopted Kristina's best friend Karina from orphanage #4 last year and the girls were able to reunite for the first time back in April of this year. The Nasekos have a real heart for missions and the orphan. Matthew and Robert will be traveling to Ukraine to visit several orphanages, meet with missionaries in the field, and assess how they can help meet the needs of both of these groups.

It sounds very much like my first trip to Ukraine back in the Spring of 2006. It was a life changing experience for me to see orphans in several orphanages and meet with individuals who were giving their lives to practice pure religion. It was on that trip that I met Kristina for the first time. And coincidentally enough, if Robert is able to go on this trip he will meet the two boys we are hoping to adopt.

There, I said it. You wouldn't think saying that would be so hard, but it has been. We have really hesitated to share about our hopes of adopting two specific children for several reasons. We haven't received a lot of encouragement from those around us. Looking at surface circumstances, it isn't the best time to adopt. But we have faith that if God intends for these boys to be part of our family, then He will order things to that end. If not, then we will graciously accept His will and rest in the confidence of His perfect plan. We have been praying for the boys for several months and receiving updates on them periodically.

Let me share what we know. We initially heard about Sasha back in April. It was his red hair and blue eyes that reminded us of our own three boys. We soon learned that while Sasha didn't have any biological siblings, he had the next best thing: Vitalik, his best friend. Both boys were abandoned at birth and have been together since the baby house. We couldn't stand the thought of separating the two of them, so we began praying about adopting both. It didn't take us long to wrap our hearts around the idea.

Sasha is seven and Vitalik just turned eight and they share the same medical condition. I spoke with our pediatrician yesterday and he was able to give me the contact information for a specialist in our area that he recommended. In time, when we are further along in the process and are closer to the adoption coming to pass, I hope to share more about the boys' condition. But for now, I'd ask that you'd pray for them and pray for us that we would have wisdom.

So if Robert is able to go on this trip, he will have the opportunity to meet the boys and spend a little time with them. Unfortunately, Sasha was moved to a different orphanage a few weeks ago. He is very sad at having been separated from the caregivers he knows and the best friend that he loves. We grieved over this news and wish that it had not happened, but we are confident that God has a reason for even this in Sasha's life.

There is a long way to go in this journey. We've been down this road before and are excited to see God work again. Our immediate hope is that Robert can travel to Ukraine in a few short weeks and minister to Sasha, Vitalik, and hundreds of other orphans. Please pray that God will provide the funds necessary to do this.


ukraine09 said...

Oh Leslie!!! I had a feeling these would be your boys. I will pray that God will work everything according to His plan and you will all be together soon. I am so sad to hear about Sasha being moved. He must be so scared and alone. I will pray for him.

Not sure if you are ready to talk about the boy's condition, but I'd love for you to email me privately if it is what I think it might be -

Again, I will be praying for all of you and look forward to following your journey. What a year 2010 is looking to be!


Jon said...

Hi Landrums! My name is Jon Nelson. My wife and I are leaving for Ukraine about the same time you are, in January. We are expecting to adopt our 4th child (1st adoption). If you are there at the same time we would love to meet you! Email is


Lisa & Jason said...

They are beautiful boys, we pray they find a family together. Hopefully yours!

Ukraine Update said...

I would love to meet up with your husband while he is here. Tell him to give me a call....067-504-0494

Zack, Jenn and William said...

These boys are so precious! I'm excited for you guys as you seek God's will for your family and for these boys. Praying that He will allow these 2 be joined with you guys. Funny, we went through the adoption journey alongside each other back in 2007, and we just might be going through it together again in 2010! You all will definitely be in my prayers.


Stephanee&Zach said...

Zach and I are SO excited about what God is doing through Robert's trip. Can't wait to hear the details but we believe that He is going to do great things. Amazing to think that in 2007 we were inspired by Kristina's (and yours) story to host Nastya and now to look at what God has done. We just continually stand in awe of Him.

Praying for the next leg of your journey!!!

Heidi and Felix said...

We will be in Ukraine at the same time, too. It would be a prayer realized to meet you. We laugh that we have met most of the adoptive friends we have from the Ukraine.

We fly out on Jan 15th and our SDA appointment is the 18th. I hope to meet you there. My e-mail is

Felix & Heidi

MamaPoRuski said...

Just catching up and O MY! Sorry I didn't congratulate you sooner! Praying for the funds and trip. What precious jewels they are!

Steve Eimers said...


Can you email me? I need to ask some important questions and I have misplaced your email.


Steve Eimers