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Tuesday, March 07, 2006
I like being popular
I was such a nerd in high school. I was the type of kid that hung out with the band geeks. I didn't play an instrument (although I tried to teach myself the flute once.) I was just that nerdy.

My secret squirrel stat counter informs me that there are a whole ton of you viewing our blog. Granted most of yesterday's count comes from D posting our blog address on, but still. We had 138 unique visitors yesterday and our counter from June is over 11,000! Congrats to the person who was 10,000 by the way. I would have sent you a lovely prize for that, but I've got nothing. Would you like a cat?

So with 138 people visiting you would think that there would be more comments. Sure the content of the blog has been a little less than thrilling to comment on, but hey just leave us a note and introduce yourself. You really don't want me to whip out that politically charged debate do you?

I have nothing on the adoption front. So in the mean time I will tell you a little about Khabarovsk.

It is pronounced huh-BAR-ovsk. Not HA-ba-rosk. I know this because we have a very good friend that lives in this town. We were lucky enough to get to see her during our trip in June. Her name is Galina and she is ex soviet military turned humanitarian. She worked with a project called To Russia With Love in the mid 90's. My MIL worked with this project and that is how we met her*. We have a few other friends in Khab (Hahb) also.

Khab is a town of about 700,000 people. It is located in Far East Russia (not technically Siberia) right on the Chinese border. The Amur River separates China from Russia at this point. Khab sits right where the Vladivostock peninsula meets the mainland of Russia. The town is built on 3 big ridges. The 3 main streets run atop these ridges. If you wander off the main street (Amurskya Ulitsa) you have to go down a big hill and back up the other side to get to the next main street.

I absolutely love Khabarovsk. The people are very friendly, the main areas of town are quite clean and there are even a few little museums and places to visit. The people speak very little English, which can be difficult, but the ones who do speak English are often willing to translate for you.

One of the best parts is that there is a brand spankin' new hockey rink in town. It is called Platinum Arena. If you follow the Webcam #1 link you may be able to see a live shot of it. That camera doesn't seem to work all the time though. So for your viewing pleasure here is a photo from June. Leave it to the hockey player to find the rink in town. I am thinking I am going to have to sneak my skates into my suitcase for the next trip.

I will try to post more photos of town later. I have quite a few of them. Shocking.

*Her meaning Galina, not my MIL. Just had to clarify that one.
Anonymous Anonymous said...
I got a kick out of your blog this a.m. - so we "met" when I was working with TRWL?? I tho't it was much earlier! :-)) I'll be adding thisinfo to my "memoirs". Happy Tuesday! Luv, MIL

Blogger Lauri said...
I know what you mean....the other day I had 200 hits and none of these lurkers comment- good thing i can count on my regulars.....

and you can count on me to comment

Blogger Jennefer said...
I will add myself to your following by adding a comment. Thanks for the Khabarovsk lesson. Nice photo. Hey… Just so you know I was the 10,000 person who visited your site- my kids would love your cat (Ha Ha).

Can I make a suggestion? You don’t have to do this of course, but I find it easier to make comments if you make the comment into a pop up box (you can make this change in the settings). This way I can refer to the blog as I make the comment. I don’t know if others like this too, but I just changed mine to be able to this because I liked it so much in some others.

Blogger Maggie said...
I'd been pronouncing Khaborovsk incorrectly. Good to know.

I just had a lurker come out of the woodwork today. Very cool. In addition to the random readers I have three regular readers that have never posted. I've always wondered why. One frequent lurker down... two to go!

Blogger CarolinaGirl said...
Hey there!. I hitting each one of your sites everyday. I love reading what each of you have to say! My poor kids are like "Hello, Mommy...when are you getting off of the computer?". I am an official Blogger junky!!. Hey, I was in the same boat as you growing up. When I saw the counter go to 50, I about died. I would pass out if ours ever hit 11,ooo. You go girl!!!

Blogger A Room to Grow said...
Yeah, I wonder who these lurkers are. I recently did the counter thing and have more hits than bloggy friends. I'm just afraid I'm actually boring people to death. Definitely not as exciting as a recent blog a friend turned me on to called "My Life as a Clandestine Callgirl". Geez...

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Hi, Thanks for the lesson on how to say Khabarovsk. Uncle Tom can say it but I have problems. Maybe now I can spit it out. We are so excited for you and can hardly wait til you bring Alexander home. Love Aunt Jan

Blogger Jennefer said...

I got this email and thought you might be interested in reading it.

"We adopted our son from Baby House #1 in Khabarovsk in Jan. 2005. He was 25 months at the time of our court date (19 months at referral).
We had a great experience with our facilitators, all the people at the baby house and all the people involved with the court process.
The city is charming and interesting with many things to see and many places to walk. There is quite a bit of influence from China (only 11 miles away), Korea and Japan. We ate more asian food than anything else while there. We met lots of locals in our 2+ weeks there (2nd
trip) and were invited to do many things which made our experience even richer.

This baby house was right in town so our drive to and from was short.
We feel our son was in very good care here with some of the caregivers taking extra interest in his well being. It seems his medical reports and vaccination records were accurate and we had all of our questions addressed in our meeting with the doctor, whom we also liked very much. We were given all of Anton's pictures from the time he came to the orphanage at 3 months old, his 2 baptism crosses and gifts from his favorite caregiver.

I could go on but I'll just say that our experience in Khabarovsk was extraordinary and Anton is a great child.

I wonder, are you adopting from Khabarovsk?

Let me know if I can answer any other questions.

Karen Heithecker

Blogger Unknown said...
My new book called "Separated Lives" is a true story about the adoption of a baby boy. Years later I take him on a fascinating but uncertain journey to search for his birth parents. It is available from Dorrance Publishing (in Pittsburgh, PA), Barnes & Noble and
Author: Lynn Assimacopoulos