This blog is chicken scratches really.  It's my feeble attempt at writing about life, namely, what's left over from parenting four daughters. It's about Down syndrome and international adoption, field trip permission slips and Moyamoya disease. It's about God being in the driver seat and me constantly attempting to crash up my car.  It's about life, both secular and sacred; writing and taking baths and board games and date nights; learning how to knit and feeling guilty that I haven't taught the girls anything about home economics.

I live in on the North Side of Chicago.  I am married to Sergei. We parent four daughters; Elaina (10), Zoya (9), Polina (5), and Evangeline (4). Evie, our newest daughter came to us through international adoption. She happens to also have Down syndrome like Polly, daughter number three.

I am a busy chic; a wife, a mom, a writer, an advocate for my kids. I love good reads, yoga, stringing words together and going for walks.   I am also thankful to be a child of God.

Before Chicago, we lived in Ukraine for almost four years church planting. Sergei was born and raised in Kiev. Now he pastors a church in Roscoe Village, our neighborhood.

Five years ago, I picked Pocket Lint partly because Elaina and Zoya referred to Polly mostly as Polly Pocket, which worked because she was so little it seemed she could fit in your pocket. Mostly, though, I picked it because there wasn't much left over from the grief I experienced in having a child with Down syndrome. But I am a writer by nature, and so I wrote about it, both on the blog and in journals at home.  Most days it felt like what I had to offer on paper amounted to the lint you find in the bottom of an empty pocket.

Tonight at dinner, Polly arrived with her hair all done up in bobby pins and bows. She had spent the afternoon playing hair salon with her sisters and came to the table when called, sat up like a big girl and had chicken like the rest of us. She laughed at her sisters and contributed to the conversation.

It hits me once in a while: I was so sad and scared when she was born. I remember reading an email from a fellow parent of a child with an extra chromosome. He said, "hold on, the sun will rise again." At the time I didn't believe him. I thought I had taken a turn in life that would never work itself out. I truly believed I would be living in gray.

I'm happy to say I was wrong.

Now my pocket overflows. I fell deeply in love with Polly and a year and a half ago we added Evangeline, who also has Down syndrome, to our family.  I've thought about changing the name of my blog. I know strategically it's hard for people to locate. But every time I seriously consider a different name I realize I need this blog to be pocket lint. It's my beginning. It's my story. And the magnanimity of the fact that there is so much to fill my pocket now is only felt when I think back to the days when there was only a little lint between my thumb and fore finger.

Pocket Lint it is. 

In the midst of four girls, two schools, various doctor appointments, therapy and cleaning the toilet, I am also currently working on a memoir called KRASATA, A Memoir of Motherhood, Down syndrome & Unexpected Beauty.  The book spans three years of my life from Polly's birth in the Former Soviet Union (2005) up until the adoption of Evangeline in 2009.  Go to my website: or like my facebook author page for more information and to sign up for updates about the progress of my book.  Get more information about KRASATA here.

Thanks for stopping by.