Wednesday, March 26, 2008
posted at 10:51 AM
The Kyrgyz, a Turkic-speaking people, constitute a slim majority of the multiethnic population of Kyrgyzstan. The constitution enshrines Kyrgyz as the country's state language, although Russian continues to be used widely. Kyrgyzstan became part of the Russian Empire in the late 1800s. In 1924 it was incorporated into the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) as an autonomous region, and in 1936 its status was upgraded and it became one of the 15 constituent republics of the USSR, officially called the Kirgiz Soviet Socialist Republic (SSR). The republic was also commonly known as Kirgizia under Soviet rule, and Russians continue to call it that today. Kyrgyzstan became independent from the USSR in 1991. In 1993 the republic ratified its first post-Soviet constitution.
The total area of Kyrgyzstan is 198,500 sq km (76,640 sq mi). The country is almost completely mountainous. More than half of Kyrgyzstan lies at an elevation higher than 2,500 m (8,200 ft), and only about one-eighth of the country lies lower than 1,500 m (about 4,900 ft). Glaciers and permanent snowfields cover more than 3 percent of Kyrgyzstan's total land area. An underlying seismic belt causes frequent earthquakes.
Kyrgyzstan is located at the juncture of two great Central Asian mountain systems (the Tian-Shan and the Pamirs). These two systems are geologically separated from each other in southern Kyrgyzstan, between the Alai Mountains of the Tian-Shan and the Trans-Alai Range (Qatorkuhi Pasi Oloy) of the Pamirs. The Trans-Alai Range, which is the northernmost part of the Pamirs, forms part of Kyrgyzstan's southern border with Tajikistan. The main ridge of the Tian-Shan extends along Kyrgyzstan's eastern border with China, on a northeastern axis. Victory Peak (known as Pik Pobedy in Russian and Jenish Chokosu in Kyrgyz) is the highest peak in the Tian-Shan system at an elevation of 7,439 m (24,406 ft). Located on the Kyrgyz-China border in northeastern Kyrgyzstan, Victory Peak is also the highest point in Kyrgyzstan and the second highest peak in the former USSR. A series of mountain chains that are part of the Tian-Shan system, including the Alatau ranges, spur off into Kyrgyzstan. Most of these ranges run generally east to west, but the Fergana Mountains in the central portion of the country run southeast to northwest. The Fergana Valley in the west and the Chu Valley in the north are among the few significant lowland areas in Kyrgyzstan.
The Naryn River, Kyrgyzstan's largest river, originates in the mountains in the northeast and flows westward through the middle of the country. The Naryn then enters the Fergana Valley and crosses into Uzbekistan, where it joins with another river to form the Syr Darya, one of Central Asia's principal rivers. The Chu River, in northern Kyrgyzstan, flows northward into southern Kazakhstan. Yssyk-Kul, the largest lake in Kyrgyzstan and one of the largest mountain lakes in the world, is located at an altitude of 1,607 m (5,273 ft) above sea level in the northeastern portion of the country.
Forests occupy 4 percent of the country's land area. Coniferous trees such as the Tian-Shan white spruce grow along lower valleys and on north-facing mountain slopes. Many rare animal species inhabit the woodlands, including the Tian-Shan bear, the red wolf, and the snow leopard, which are protected by government decree. Other animals in Kyrgyzstan include deer, mountain goats, and mountain sheep. Kyrgyzstan's mountain lakes are an annual refuge for thousands of migrating birds, including the mountain goose and other rare species.
Kyrgyzstan's natural resources include significant deposits of gold and other minerals. Also present are deposits of coal, uranium, mercury, antimony, nepheline, bismuth, lead, and zinc. Exploitable but small reserves of oil and natural gas also exist. The country's fast-flowing rivers provide hydroelectric power. Only 7 percent of the total land area is cultivated.
The country's climate varies by region. The climate is subtropical in the Fergana Valley and temperate in the northern foothill zone. The lower mountain slopes have a dry continental climate, as they receive desert-warmed winds from Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, whereas the highest mountain elevations have a polar climate. In the valleys, the average daily temperature in July is 28° C (82° F). In January daily averages are as low as -14° C (7° F). Conditions are much colder at high elevations, where in July the average daily temperature is 5° C (41° F) and in January, -28° C (-18° F). Precipitation is between 100 and 500 mm (4 and 20 in) in the valleys and from 180 to 1,000 mm (7 to 40 in) in the mountains.
Commemorating the great Kyrgyz of the past The village of Kyzyl-Bairak has opened a monument in memory of Atake-baatyr and his great-grandson, Shabdan-baatyr, who did much to unite separate Kyrgyz tribes.
The memorial has been build trough donations gathered all over the country. President Akayev's children- daughter Bermet and son Aidar - are the initiators of the monument's construction.
Atake-baatyr stands on a pedestal with a snow leopard at his feet and a scroll of paper in his hands. The statue faces the sun rising from behind the mountains. In Russia in the mid-18th century Atake-baatyr was called the prince of Kyrgyz tribes. This year marks his 265th birthday.
The road to the memorial, which is going up, is covered with pink sand and has firs on both sides. A museum, left of the monument, keeps unique photographs and documents about the history of the Kyrgyz people. Some of these pictures and documentations have never been exhibited before.
posted at 10:40 AM
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
posted at 10:24 AM
Monday, March 24, 2008
Thursday, March 20, 2008
WELCOME HAPPY MORNING!
“Welcome, happy morning!” age to age shall say:“Hell today is vanquished, Heav’n is won today!”Lo! the dead is living, God forevermore!Him, their true Creator, all His works adore!
“Welcome, happy morning!”Age to age shall say.
Earth her joy confesses, clothing her for spring,All fresh gifts returned with her returning King:Bloom in every meadow, leaves on every bough,Speak His sorrow ended, hail His triumph now.
Months in due succession, days of lengthening light,Hours and passing moments praise Thee in their flight.Brightness of the morning, sky and fields and sea,Vanquisher of darkness, bring their praise to Thee.
Maker and Redeemer, life and health of all,Thou from heaven beholding human nature’s fall,Of the Father’s Godhead true and only Son,Mankind to deliver, manhood didst put on.
Thou, of life the Author, death didst undergo,Tread the path of darkness, saving strength to show;Come, then True and Faithful, now fulfill Thy Word;’Tis Thine own third morning; rise, O buried Lord!
Loose the souls long prisoned, bound with Satan’s chain;All that now is fallen raise to life again;Show Thy face in brightness, bid the nations see;Bring again our daylight: day returns with Thee!
What Thou, my Lord, hast suffered, was all for sinners’ gain;Mine, mine was the transgression, but Thine the deadly pain. Lo, here I fall, my Savior! ’Tis I deserve Thy place;Look on me with Thy favor, vouchsafe to me Thy grace.
What language shall I borrow to thank Thee, dearest friend,For this Thy dying sorrow, Thy pity without end? O make me Thine forever, and should I fainting be,Lord, let me never, never outlive my love to Thee.
posted at 2:47 PM
The season of Lent is forty days, not including Sundays. Christ fasted in the wilderness forty days after his baptism. It was a time of prayerful preparation for the years of ministry that lay ahead for him.
Christ was baptized by John the Baptist in the River Jordan. As Christ, the Son, came back out of the water, the Spirit descended and the Father spoke--the trinity manifested in one event. (Matt. 3:16-17; Mark 1:10-11; Luke 3:21-22).
While he was in the wilderness, Christ was tempted by the devil. The first temptation was turning stone to bread, for He was hungry. (Matt. 4:1-4; Luke 4:3-4)
The devil persisted, taking Christ to the highest place on the temple and "daring" Him to jump. After all, wouldn't God send the angels? Christ rejected this temptation, too. (Matt. 4:5-7; Luke 4:9-12)
Still the devil tempted Christ. From the top of a high mountain, the devil offered Christ all the kingdoms of the world, but this time Christ sent the devil away. (Matt. 4:8-11) Christ healed the sick, aided the poor, and spread the good news of salvation.
On Palm Sunday, one week before His resurrection, Christ rode triumphantly into Jerusalem. The crowds cheered Him. (Matt. 21:1-11; Mark 11:8-10; Luke 19:36-38; John 12:12-13)
It was the week of Passover, and Jerusalem was filled with people who had come to worship. At the temple, Christ overturned the tables of the money changers. (Matt. 21:12-13; Mark 11:15-17; Luke 19:45-46)
Thursday evening was the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Jesus and the Disciples shared the Lord's Supper. (Matt. 26:26-29; Mark 14:22-25; Luke 22:17-20; John 13:2a)
Christ was arrested in the garden of Gethsemane and was put to trial under both Jewish and Roman law. Although he could find no crime, the Roman governor Pilate sentenced Christ to die on a cross and "washed his hands" of the matter. (Matt. 27:24)
Before Christ was crucified, Pilate had Him flogged. The soldiers pressed a crown of thorns on His head and mocked Him. They spat on Him, and He was forced to carry his cross to Golgotha, the place of the skull. (Matt. 27:26-33; Mark 15:15-22)
Christ was nailed to the cross on Good Friday and crucified between two thieves. There He suffered and He died. (Matt. 27:32-56; Mark 15:21-41; Luke 23:32-49; John 19:16b-37)
Christ was buried in a tomb by Joseph of Arimathea, who wrapped Christ's body in clean linen, placed Christ in the tomb, and rolled a stone over the entrance. The tomb was sealed, and guards were posted. (Matt. 27:57-66; Mark 15:42-47; Luke 23:50-56; John 19:38-42)
Christ remained in the tomb on Friday and Saturday. On the third day, Sunday, He arose, just as He said. (Matt. 28:1-10; Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24:1-12; John 20
posted at 2:41 PM
posted at 10:32 AM
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son,that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.John 3:16
That’s the basic message of how to be assured of a relationship with God and life after death.
God. Who is He? The Bible identifies Him as the creator of all that exists. He made the world, which helps us understand our place in it. He made us—He made you. You have an undeniable connection with God whether you realize it or not.
This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved usand sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.1 John 4:10
God loves us. God created us. He loves us—so much so that He sent His Son to restore our relationship with Him. Propitiation is a word that means “to restore into good favor.” Why does this need to happen? As the verse indicates, sin is the major reason. Sin destroys our relationship with God, but God in His love made a way for us to be restored.
And He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed.1 Peter 2:24
He gave His only begotten Son. The first verse tells us about the penalty for sin. Every person is guilty of some sin, some violation of God’s standard for what is right and wrong. The penalty for sin is death. All people die, and sin is the reason for it.
But the second verse tells us what it means that God gave His Son: Jesus died on the cross, taking the penalty of our sin on Himself. Imagine sin as a crime. On the cross, Jesus was convicted of every crime ever committed, and through His suffering, He was carried out the death sentence for each conviction. We don’t have to pay the penalty for our sin—we can go free and enjoy the life God has for us!
Whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. This can be the simplest part to follow but the hardest part to understand. All we have to do to be assured of life after death in a perfect relationship with God is to believe in Jesus. If you acknowledge that Jesus is Lord—that He is the Son of God that He claimed to be who died to pay the debt of our sin—and truly believe that He was raised from the dead . . . you are saved from the penalty of death! Jesus proved that the power of death could not hold Him. If we believe in Him, His power over death extends to us as well.
Just tell God what you believe. If you want to accept the free gift of salvation, simply ask God. Follow this sample prayer if it helps verbalize your feelings:
God, I know that I have done things that are wrong. But I believe that Jesus died on the Cross to pay the punishment for what I’ve done. I believe that He is Your Son, the Word of God, and I want Him to be my Savior. I want Him to cleanse me of what I’ve done wrong and defeat sin for me. In His name I ask You to welcome me back to You. I know that I have followed my own rules and served my own desires. But God, I don’t want to serve myself anymore. I want to follow You. I want to spend eternity with You! Thank You for Your wonderful gift of Jesus.
If you would like to talk to someone right now about your decision and how to begin a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, please call toll-free 1-888-NEED HIM (1-888-633-3446).
posted at 9:38 AM
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
posted at 4:03 PM
Well, it's been a rough few weeks and haven't felt much like blogging. Things have sort of slowed down so I thought I'd update the past few weeks.
Starting the beginning of March Daddy ended up in the hospital because of a fall. Didn't really hurt anything but was there for a few days to recover. Was then transfered to a rehab hospital for some physical therapy. It was a lot of back and forth and accomplishing nothing at home. It just seems like when it rains it pours and everything just seemed to be over whelming. We had our counter tops put in also recently which added to the confusion. We also took Diego (a friend's dog) in for a few days while his mom took a vacation. He was such a good dog we wanted to keep him. He loved being at our house. So everthing at home sort of got put aside...laundry, cleaning, etc. But then it took a week to get our plumbing hooked up again. Hard to do dishes in a bathroom sink.
So it's now time to get things in order...Martha got some good news today from her agency regarding her homestudy. It has been approved and is in the process of being sent to her for certification. Yippee! It's about time. So in just a week or so she will take it downtown to get certified at the State Department. Then it can get sent to the agency for Authentication and approval for a referral. Not really sure how long that will be either. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we had a little one home for Christmas? That would be just way too cool! So progress is being made slowly.
Last week we got together with our Mom's Night Out group. It was just so much fun to see everyone again. Two had received referrals so it was great to see the pictures. There just seems to be so much to accomplish before our trips. But I found out we will probably never be ready. One good thing is that we think we found a few people to watch our sweeties while we go. We have a few people from our vet that are willing to stay at our house for the times we're gone. That would be a load off. I'm sure they will miss us but will be fine as long as they have the love from someone else.
We hope to do a few projects before the summer starts. We want to paint our one bathroom and get that in order. It's such a small one it's not going to take a long time. Should be fun.
posted at 12:34 PM
Affording adoption travel - Need help with expenses?
We asked our AF reader panel to share tips for saving on travel, which is often the biggest adoption expense, given multiple or extended trips to a destination, domestic or international. Here are your suggestions:
- Ask airlines and hotels about discounts. “When booking our flight, we told the ticket agent that we would be flying back with a baby we were adopting, and got half off the ticket for our daughter,” says Cecy, of Ohio. “While in Nevada, I explained to a hotel manager that we had to stay until the state released us to take our daughter home, and this could be 10 days or more. They discounted our room for the entire stay.”
- Look into local accommodations. “If you’re traveling overseas, stay at a small bed and breakfast or guest house. Many parents stay at ‘Western’ hotels, which are nice, but pricey,” says Samantha, of North Carolina. “B&Bs are often cheaper, and you’ll see more local culture.
- Experience the country you are in—don’t pick up your child and go home."
Limit the number of travelers. Melissa, of Illinois, says, “My husband and I traveled alone, leaving our sons with relatives, to save on the cost of tickets.”
posted at 12:14 PM
Friday, March 14, 2008
to protect him from the elements, and to store his possessions. One day, after scavenging for food, he arrived home to find his little hut in
flames, with smoke rolling up to the sky. He felt the worst had happened, and everything was lost. He was stunned with disbelief, grief, and anger. He cried out, 'God! How could you do this to me?' Early the next day, he was awakened by the sound of a ship approaching the island! It had come to rescue him! 'How did you know I was here?'
asked the weary man of his rescuers. We saw your smoke signal,' they
The Moral of this Story:
It's easy to get discouraged when things are going bad, but we shouldn't
lose heart, because God is at work in our lives, even in the midst of
our pain and suffering.
Remember that the next time your little hut seems to be burning to the
ground it just may be a smoke signal that summons the grace of God.
For all the negative things we have to say to ourselves,
- God has a positive answer for it :
- You say: "It's impossible"
- God says: All things are possible (Luke 18:27)
- You say: "Nobody really loves me"
- God says: I love you (John 3:16 & John 13:34)
- You say: "I can't go on"
- God says: My grace is sufficient (II Corinthians12:9 & Psalm 91:15)
posted at 10:34 PM
Thursday, March 6, 2008
Even children who are experiencing attachment strain may have some of these signs of healthy attachment. Knowledge of positive attachment will help parents build on the areas that are strengths, but should not be used to ignore indications—even mild ones--that a baby/child is experiencing difficulty.
1. Joyful the majority of the time.
2. Seeks out primary caregiver for comfort and to meet needs.
3. Likes to be cradled and held facing primary caregiver.
4. Makes good eye contact with primary caregiver and initiates eye contact--both close & distant proximity.
5. When primary caregiver makes eye contact, the child smiles back, showing signs of being happy with the interaction.
6. Smiles and exhibits pleasure when seeing self in the mirror.
7. Frequently engages in playful interactions with primary caregiver (interactions initiated by both parent and child.)
8. Uses different cries to alert primary caregiver of needs and wants; easily consoled by primary caregiver.
9. Accepts limits placed by primary caregiver.
10. Willingly allows primary caregiver to hold bottle, hand feed, and nurture.
11. Melts into primary caregiver when held; lays head on shoulder; holds on when held; faces primary caregiver rather than away.
12. Enjoys cuddling, hugs, and kisses given by primary caregiver and initiates cuddling, hugs, and kisses without wanting something in return.
13, Can co-sleep without major difficulty.
14. Prefers primary caregiver to all others.
15. Imitates primary caregiver regularly (actions, language, etc.)
16. Content to sit on primary caregiver’s lap or stay in primary caregiver’s arms for an age appropriate amount of time.
17, Settles quickly when held by primary caregiver.
18. Enjoys skin on skin contact.
19. Prefers close proximity to primary caregiver but not in an anxious, desperate way.
20. Consistently sleeps well and peacefully.
21. Wants to please primary caregiver because he knows it will make his parent happy.
22. Reacts appropriately to pain; wants primary caregiver to nurture him when in pain or sick; easily consoled.
23. Uses food appropriately. Recognizes when hungry and full.
24. Shows true personality to primary caregiver and family and friends (discovering a child’s innate personality takes time.)
25. Initiates “sweet nothing” talk with primary caregiver.
26. Shows appropriate stranger anxiety.
27. Displays age appropriate anxiety at brief separation from primary caregiver but is able to be reassured.
28. Reunites happily with primary caregiver with eye contact and physical contact.
29. Show signs of feeling safe in social situations; able to play and interact with others, but stays close and checks in with primary caregiver regularly but not in an anxious or desperate way.
30. Is gentle to self and others.
31. Gets along with other children & siblings most of the time.
32. Is okay with primary caregiver leaving the room for short periods of time. Conversely, cares that primary caregiver has left the room and shows happiness when that person returns.
33. Speech/language skills are developing appropriately.
34. Angry outbursts/tantrums are infrequent, short in duration. Parent can soothe child.
35. “Normal” discipline methods/parenting techniques are effective.
36. Child can identify his own feelings (at an age appropriate level.)
37. Child can identify the feelings of others (at an age appropriate level.)
39. Child can delay gratification (at an age appropriate level.) -A4everFamily in consultation with Kali Miller, PhD
posted at 1:52 PM