Posted by: poema | December 28, 2007

The wedding …

The holidays have finally begun. The first in the row is the Ivanovs’ wedding. Then goes Western Christmas, our New Years, Orthodox Christmas and another Tanya’s wedding (and Rudick’s). Plus there are few birthdays. In general, life’s spiral is quite strongly wound, which is unusual for Siberian winter where hibernation is not only for animals.

Pictures of the first event:


The bride and her maids

Tired and happy newlyweds …


… and their guests

Posted by: poema | December 15, 2007


Mark and I (Tanya) went to Gorno-Altaisk to visit our friends there and move Mark’s stuff toUlan-Ude. There were just 3 days there to do it all: to meet as many people as possible and to go through the stuff. Thank you for your hospitality!


All of it needed to be looked through and divided into essential and non-essential (which was left there).


Captivating process.


An Altai family we love a lot (Erman, Alissa and baby Biyaroo).

Posted by: poema | December 15, 2007

Generation NEXT

It’s been a long time since I’ve shown you pictures of these people. They are growing before our very eyes.


Guess who is who: Lydia and Paulina (Mark and Ayuna’s twins).


And this is Daniel (Cheena’s and Ksusha’s son) who can firmly stand now (with support).

Posted by: poema | December 15, 2007

Get married, gals, get married!

Quite a long time ago now there happened a secret event – bridal shower. The hero of the event was Tanya Mitrofanova who is getting married next week, on the 22 of December. As is usual for us, the bride already knew that she was asked to come not just “to try the wedding dress on”, but to the party. And as is also usual, she expressed genuine surprise. Pictures below.


Preparations (beauty is the main thing!)


A mandate for Tanya (it says there – “You got married – now help your girlfriends do the same”).


Happy bride



Posted by: poema | November 10, 2007

Fall in Krasnoyarsk

At the end of October we went to Krasnoyarsk again for a training session. At first we had a plan to go there by car, so we could see all the beauty of the Siberian fall, however, man can make plans, but only what God wills, happens. So we had to go by train.

The training was beyond any expectations. What did they not do to us, what did they not put into us, what did they not try to rid us of! I never knew: communication is always a risk. You think you said one thing, then it turns out others understood quite a different thing. And they would be right too!

Also I liked a quote from C. S. Lewis. It was given in Russian, so after I translate it back into English it sounds something like “Giving a speech is like herding a flock down a street. Where the gates on the right or on the left are open, that’s where the sheep will get lost”. Figuratively, they taught us to keep the flock together and not to let it go into others’ yards during our speech.


Do you recognize those ladies? I had trouble with it, because they all changed their hair color. I guess, it is Vera, Nastya and Olya (left to right).


And this is our thank you to those who helped us to go to study there. God bless!


Krasnoyarsk fall can be a little bit white.

Posted by: poema | October 20, 2007

Better early, than late

There’s an old Russian tradition – not to celebrate your birthday earlier than it is – better to do it later than earlier. In the latter case, something bad will happen. Of course, this is not true, so this year we ventured to celebrate our birthday 2 weeks prior to when it should be (Usually it is the last Sunday of October).

We are 9 years old. The date is not a round one, and it made everything go well: no stress, no fuss, but mere pleasure. There are so many talented people around and among us. Good job!


out of the mouth of babes


Already a traditional song from Tanya


Just cute


Another tradition – karaoke

Posted by: poema | October 9, 2007

Amazing Creation

Two weeks ago there came a visitor from the States to Ulan-Ude. I had a privilege to translate for him. For a whole week I was plunged into a world of evidences of God’s creation – all of His wonders and miracles. Who could think a century ago of DNA and proteins testifying of the existence of a Creator? The visitor left a magazine “Intelligent design” in Russian, which is printed somewhere in Ukraine. It has web-sites you can also visit: Intelligent Design and Biblical Discovery.

Posted by: poema | September 14, 2007

Hello from the Eternal Ice Land

Shawna and I are in the heart of permafrost country: Sakha-Yakutia. It’s just the middle of September, beginning of fall, and it’s already cold. Happy people they are: potatoes already collected, berries picked, harvest reaped.

On Saturday they celebrated the jubilee of their capital Yakutsk (I don’t understand why they call it a jubilee – it’s 375 years old). Unlike our celebrations in Ulan-Ude, here alcohol was strictly prohibited, even beer. That was very unusual: so many young people outside and nobody drunk. Another interesting thing: many people here actually smile to strangers on the street.

They also baked a loooong cake, 375 meters. They planned to cut it into pieces at 1:00 p.m. We were there at 1:05 p.m. and only crumbs remained. Looks like this habit of being and beginning late exists only in Buryatia.


On the bank of the Lena river (shallow in the fall)



Sakha tram



Anton’s birthday party (playing a strategy game)



Vicky and kids (getting ready for the guests)



Empty tables (the cake disappeared within minutes)

Posted by: poema | September 7, 2007

What happened by the river …

Last Sunday there was another joyful event; or rather, another tradition started. Not everyone could go to Baikal camp this summer, so neither could everyone be baptized. However there were many people who wanted to be plunged into water. That’s why it was decided that we would go on a picnic to Vakhmistrovo village, which is on a river bank, so that those people wouldn’t have to wait until next summer to be baptized.

Everything was quite relaxed: after Sunday service a bus came and picked up everyone who wanted to go.  Actually there were ‘a little bit’ more than the bus could normally fit, but that was even better – there were THAT many people. We arrived, set up tables, listened to  testimonies, watched the baptisms, and just relaxed.

Big thanks to all those who went the day before to clean up any trash that was lying around. It was all very clean and beautiful.


Picnic site


Those who fit in the bus




Pasha went wild. Crime scene evidence (pouring water on innocent people).


Evening beauty

Posted by: poema | August 20, 2007

Another picture from the Conference

Some of you would like to see the yurt from the inside, so here it is. Although there are 12 beds (6 double), but it’s still very roomy, as you see.


Older Posts »