Kind of an interesting mix of topics, dontcha think? Let me show you how these are all related. . .
I took today off work so I could deal with both governments that affect our household. First up, the Russian Government.
Incredibly, it's almost been five years since we brought Aidan home. As anyone involved in Russian Adoption knows, the first order of business, directly after getting the birth certificate, is to get the kiddo a Russian passport. This occurred on April 8th, 2008.
I promised myself I would always keep Aidan's passport and any Russian Citizenship issues up to date and current until he comes of age. And, even then, I plan to help him as he needs me to with however he wants to handle things. But, the main thing is that it will always be his choice on what to do at that point in time. I will not take that choice away from him.
And so, because children's passports are only valid for 5 years, it is time to update and renew his Russian passport (his US one will be updated next year).
The Russian Embassy website has a great link to a company located in Chicago that helps handle everything for us American parents. They provide all the forms and tell you what needs to be attached. It can all be done online. All I had to do was scan Aidan's passport as well as mine and Pat's, and Aidan's birth Certificate. After filling out the online forms and uploading the requested documents, and paying (of course), I sent it all along. I expect to get an email from them requesting a notarized release allowing them to handle this for me as well as a new passport picture of Aidan, both of which will be sent directly. And then a few weeks later, Aidan's new passport should arrive. In the world of paperwork, apostilles and notarizations, this was relatively painless. The fee, $460.00, was the wrost part. But, again, worth it to me to not have to find a translator (the Embassy no longer accepts anything that isn't in Russian--surprise, surprise) and I don't have to go to the Embassy, which I would not be thrilled about right now anyway.
And there you have it. The passport work is basically complete.
My other chore for today was to do our Income taxes. I am happy to report that this chore, too, is complete and a refund should arrive in our bank account from both our Federal Government and from the Commonwealth of Virginia within a few weeks.
I can't even tell you how happy I am to be done with these two chores!!! They weren't hard, just time consuming. But, now they are finished!
So, how do Sticks and Shoes add in to all of this fun form filling out? Well, because I was off today, I was able to walk Aidan to the bus stop this morning. Ordinarly I drive him so I can scoot off to work as soon as he is on the bus.
Walking allowed him the opportunity to pick up a few sticks along the way. This boy loves sticks! He was picking up sticks the very first time Pat and I took him outside in Russia and it has never stopped or even dwindled in a joy for this boy. He has picked them up in parks in Krasnoyarsk, in parks in Moscow, in parks in Washington D. C., Herndon, Leesburg, Las Vegas, Southern California, North Carolina and many points in between. He loves sticks!!! Crazy. . .
As for the shoes, I had put my sneakers on the floor of the kitchen to put on as soon as we were leaving. Aidan, seeing mine there, decided to put his next to them. I was stunned to see how close in size we have become!
One additional note: While I was waiting for Aidan to get changed after his Skills Class on Saturday, his coach for Skills came up to me to tell me how proud of Aidan he is. He says that Aidan has a great attitude and obvious love for hockey. He went on to tell me that he thinks Aidan is very talented and that he expects him to go far with it, especially if he keeps it up. Hooboy. I knew he was good, but. . .