A gated community

December 29, 2008 at 1:23 am 6 comments

We are officially baby-proofed.  Well, sort of.

When we had Elaina over eight years ago, I remember baby-proofing taking up a whole weekend.  Sergei and I spent a half hour in a baby aisle at Target throwing little packets of white plastic into our cart; levers and toilet bowl locks, a baby gate.

And its a good thing too.  Elaina was as rambunctious, active and smart at age one as she is now on the brink of her tween years.  We were a safe little family living on a second floor two bedroom apartment in Coloma, Michigan.

Zoya came along when Elaina was eighteen months old.  I didn’t know it at the time, but there’s actually a term for having kids this close together:  ‘baby bunching’.  The apartment was still kind-of baby-proofed.  A lot of the little white locks on the cabinets and drawers were broke off, the toilet clasp got lost and Elaina had learned how to climb over the baby gates so we took them down.

Zoya proved to be a laid back baby, thank goodness.  She was largely content with watching her lightning bolt of a sister prance around the little apartment and didn’t seem to mind or even notice when we loaded her up at nine months old and locked her into a nine hour plane trip to our new home, Ukraine.

The girls shared the bulk of their toddler years in Kiev, in two different, cold apartments in the midst of the city’s four million people.  There was no baby proofing.  I was exhausted acclimating to life, trying to speak Russian and keeping my girls occupied during the long winter months indoors.

Polly has not had the benefit or safety of baby-proofing in her life either.  It took her a little longer to crawl and she just started walking a few weeks ago at thirty-one months.  Actually, Elaina and Zoya have been the best baby-proofers.  Polly’s simple never left alone.  The girls love to include her in all their play.

And I haven’t thought of baby-proofing for years.

Until now.

A social worker is coming to our house on Tuesday to expect our inhabitance with the goal of giving her recommendation of our family’s standing in a written home study that will be submitted to the INS and ultimately to the country in Eastern Europe where we hope to adopt Evangeline.

Therefore, today after church Sergei started his projects, carbon monoxide and smoke detectors on all floors of the house and baby gates.  There is a pile of little packets of drawer locks and plug closers on the kitchen table.

And tonight we are officially ;iving in a gated community.

I have to say that we are all thrilled with the new arrangement.  The girls played upstairs, secure with the gate and Sergei and I were able to do some things downstairs in peace.


(And a big thanks to our friends, Kirk and Bonnie and Ella and baby Justice who had an extra gate to share!)


Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

Merry Christmas Happy New Year with a cheeky smile!

6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. camommy2kj  |  December 29, 2008 at 8:04 pm

    I just asked our homestudy lady about child locks on the cupboards and she said none of that is necessary! Hmmmm Can’t wait to hear how it goes!

  • 2. ukrainemom  |  December 29, 2008 at 8:12 pm

    I don’t know if the locks were that big of a deal Renee. We for sure needed the gates and the carbon monoxide/smoke detectors. I’m sure your HS social worker will tell you for sure before the visit.

  • 3. tracey  |  December 29, 2008 at 11:34 pm

    A good gate on the stairs is fabulous… I miss my old gated days… 🙂

    Ask the social worker if anything else is needed or recommended. She probably has a list of requirements, etc.

    Good luck!

  • 4. heartsong  |  December 30, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    Praying for you today. May God grant you the desires of your heart….quickly…faster than you ever dreamed.

  • 5. Alida  |  December 31, 2008 at 3:04 pm

    Praying that all went well!!

  • 6. theramblinghousewife  |  January 2, 2009 at 1:12 am

    This is a strange phenomenon–My house which was completely, “baby-proofed,” for the Tractor .. .was somehow not nearly baby-proofed,” enough for the Choo-Choo–

    How does this happen? 🙂

    Happy New Year–Wishing you the best 2009 possible!!! 🙂


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