Russian Flag

Today was our second full day at the orphanage.  It was a little disconcerting how dark it was in the morning—the sun doesn’t rise here until 9am so it was dark until well after breakfast.  Nonetheless, the food was good and the staff was very welcoming.

At 11am we had the opening ceremony for the camp where two staff members dressed as “Grandfather Frost” and his granddaughter “Snegurochka” kicked off the camp and formally introduced us and the camp director, Lena, to the kids.  The highlight of the opening ceremony was when the staff had us act out a Russian fairy tale for the kids by assigning us parts on the fly.  All the kids were very amused by Norm who was given the part of the little round loaf of bread who had to try to avoid being eaten by various animals.

In the afternoon the orphanage brought in an expert in ceramics to teach all of us plus two orphans from each family unit how to make a bird out of clay.  It was great way to get to know one another as we worked side by side with the kids as we helped one another work with the clay.  I know I personally got to know a little bit about a few of the kids sitting next to me.

Later in the afternoon we had a chance to visit with the “kinder” kids.  They are the youngest kids at the orphanage and are aged 3-7 years old.  We played games with them and I also had fun letting the kids use our camera to take photos of one another.  Even the 3 ½ year old was able to figure out how to turn the camera on and off and take photos!

The day finished off with dinner and a crafting session where the kids got to make their own foam sunglasses.  Overall it was a good day and we are all starting to make new friendships.