"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

Friday, March 4, 2011

Our Last Days.....

Our final days in Serbia were bittersweet. We loved our time in this country, but we were so excited to be returning home to our other children.

Monday morning started off bright and early with many things to do to finish up the adoption paperwork. Here are Nole & I in front of our apartment building...
Jasmina came to our apartment at 8:30 am in a taxi and picked us up to go pick up Nole's passport. When we got there, however, the passport office was have "technical" difficulties, so we waited for a while before going to Nole's medical appointment. After that was done, there were several other stops to make, but because Nole was not needed in person any longer, Nole and I went back to our apartment while Kevin met with Jasna, the attorney, back to the passport office & the medical office, and then came back to the apartment to get us. From there, the three of us went to the American Embassy for our 2:00 Visa appointment. Here is a photo showing how narrow the streets are in Belgrade...
That evening we decided to venture out on our own--Jasmina sent us the name and address of a very good pizza place in downtown Belgrade. After eating some very authentic Italian pizza, we walked the streets window shopping. Each little shop specializes in something....a socks shop, jewelry, tailor, shoe repair, tatoo & body piercing, you name it. At the very end, Kevin found a very quaint tie store. It was only a little closet of a space, maybe 5 ft by 10 ft, and only sold ties. He bought two. :)

On Tuesday morning, I met Jasmina at the orphanage where she works as a medical doctor. She gave me a tour and I got to meet several little ones who are in the process of being adopted who are listed on Reece's Rainbow. Oh, how my heart ached as I saw each of these precious children--all in need of their own forever family! However, most of them are not free for adoption for one reason or another....often times it is because the parents will not release them. So there they sit, in their cribs with no real family to call their own. I wanted to snatch up several little girls... Kevin and my Dad were very worried about me visiting an orphanage....thinking that I would want to take them all home with me. :) Well, just two or three....

When I got back to the apartment, Kevin and Nole did not answer the door bell. So, I went off to Coffee Dream and had a latte and chocolate muffin. I went back to the apartment and rang & rang the doorbell. Finally, I decided to call Jasmina to call our apartment number (because I didn't have the number) and ask Kevin to let me in. I guess my little men had fallen asleep.

After letting me in, Kevin took a taxi to the Embassy to pick up Nole's visa. When he returned, we went out to an authentic Serbian restaurant with Jasmina and her handsome nephew Bane. We had a wonderful dinner together!

After dinner, Bane dropped Jasmina and I off for a performance of Kolo--a Serbian Dance troupe.
Their performance was so wonderful and an awesome way for me to end my time in this beautiful country.

After a tearful goodbye with Jasmina, I went into our apartment and packed. We woke up at 4:00 a.m. for our very long day of travelling.

I will spare you the details of the trip, but I must say that Nole was such a great little traveler. We had so many compliments about his good behavior.

Our travels home took us from Belgrade to Munich,
Munich to Washington D.C., Washington D.C. to Denver, and then Denver to Bismarck. Kevin's brother Randy met us at the airport at midnight and gave us a ride to my brother Joe's where our Tahoe was waiting.

Nole loved riding in this big vehicle in his very first carseat.
We had to drive the two hours home to Minot where Elizabeth, Sam, Grandma & Grandpa welcomed us home.

After the long day and visiting, Nole settled into his new little bed in his 'monkey room' and sleep away like he has been here forever.

Now we end this journey with the only words we can say: Hvala Bogu...Thanks be to God!


  1. What great memories! I hope you are writing all of this down and some day write a book about you adventures? I for sure would purchase it.

  2. Wow! Welcome home!! Congratulations!!!!

  3. Congratulations once again!!!May God Bless you and your wonderful family with much happiness and good health!