"To bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair." Isaiah 61:3

The Burckhard Family

The Burckhard Family

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Meeting Bella for the First Time...

This video is from our very first meeting with Bella in the Orphanage Director's office. Also, there were our facilitator, translator, her teacher, the orphanage lawyer, and the Regional Inspector (the pretty young lady in white on the other side of the table.)

We were all sitting around the Director's conference table, and we heard this little shuffling feet behind us. Kevin and I turned around, and there she was...our little Bella...she was real! Both of us just sat there staring at her. It took a few moments for me to come to life and kneel down beside her. I reached in my purse and pulled out the little doll she is clutching in her hand.

Previously, the Director said that Bella is very smart and is quite the actress. You can tell he really cares about the children; note how he buttons the back of her dress while she is giving out candy! He seemed so proud of her, especially when she handed out candy to everyone in the room before taking some for herself! This video encapsulates Bella to a "T", even down to the very end where she backs up in fear of Kevin! This is a moment in time we will never forget! So, we wanted to share it with you--our dear friends....

After the meeting, the lawyer and director went over Bella's history and medical records with us. We were told that she has a patent oval window heart defect that may have closed on her own. Also, she has had hernia surgery (they performed surgery through her belly button so now she doesn't have one--it's just a line that looks like her silly "old man" grin.) Other than that, she is very healthy.

Her biological mother was born in the same year as me and is from Kiev. She has a degree in engineering and is a geologist. Her biological father is from Chernobyl and is a driver. We were told that they are a good family with no drug or alcohol history. Sadly, they did not visit Bella once in the hospital after her birth, but left her there. She was then transferred to her current orphanage and has been there her whole life. The parental rights were later revoked. Oh, and Bella has an older brother and sister. We will have access to any and all information we desire, so that will be good.

Wow, what an emotional day! Can't believe it was only just a few weeks ago! Now, we are counting the days to be reunited with our little Bella, never to leave her again!

Love in Him, Paula



  1. omg that was so cute! She is adorable! hugs

  2. That was an absolute treat! Thanks so much for the invite to your blog and for sharing that video!!!!

  3. she is SUCH a personality. You guys have been blessed!

  4. I am glad you got the video to load. It is so neat to see Bella in "real" life!! Can't wait to meet her in person! :-)

  5. Oh she is so cute! What a joy!

  6. Oh my goodness Paula, she is SO SMART!!!! So many things ran thru my head when I watched that video - that was the same man that met us in the entry way of the orphanage as Bella's group was coming in. He pleaded for us to find a family for her and never once hesitated at us for taking pictures - it brings tears to my eyes seeing that!!!!!!
    She is so vocal and beautiful :)
    CONGRATS mommy and God Bless your family!

  7. I'm so happy for you. I was moved to tears as I looked at the pictures of Bella's orphanage and as I watched the video of her when she met you. She is in such an amazing orphanage!!! I think you would be shocked if you saw what the lives of other children her age are like in other orphanages (like my Katie's orphanage). Bella is blessed to have you and she is blessed to have spent her first few years in such an amazing orphanage.