Tuesday, March 22, 2011

GOOD NEWS!

We received some GOOD NEWS about Dana this morning!  We found out that she was registered in her region on April 4, 2010.  This means that she should  be cleared no later than June 4, 2011.  Although we are still waiting to hear on her official national registration date, I was told that it is very likely she will end up being cleared sometime in May.  The current plan is for our dossier to be submitted in late April, which will hopefully put us in EE in late May or early June.  I cannot begin to tell you how happy, thankful, and relieved we are today.  These past few days of not knowing have been very difficult.  Thank you again to everyone who called, emailed, commented, and most importantly, prayed!  It worked!!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

A Setback


I was hoping to write a happy post on Thursday telling everyone that we had been submitted.  That was the plan, but it didn't happen.  Instead, we got word that when our facilitator in Dana's country tried to submit our dossier, she found out that Dana isn't available for international adoption right now.  In Dana's country, an orphaned child must be available exclusively to the citizens of this country for 14 months before they are able to be adopted internationally.  We are 99.9% certain she has been registered for adoption in her country, but are still trying to find out how much longer she needs to wait before she is cleared to be adopted internationally.  It could be a few more weeks or a few months...we just don't know.  We are willing to wait whatever amount of time necessary to bring this little girl home.  We already think of her as our daughter and have no plans of giving her up.  However, rumor has it that the government in her country is planning some major changes to their international adoption program that could possibly put a moratorium on all adoptions.  Nobody knows if or when this is going to happen, but the word on the street is that it could be as soon as early summer.  So, as you can see, time is of the essence.  We are really hoping to find out some more information on Monday and are obviously hoping that our wait will not be much longer.  We are so lucky to have so many people praying for us.  Thank you to everyone who has offered support and encouragement to us these past few days. 

One more thing before I end.  Just in case there are any families considering adopting through Reece's Rainbow, please don't let this scare you away.  It almost never happens.  Reece's Rainbow does not knowingly list children who are not available.  This is a pretty rare situation and we are optimistic that it will have a happy ending.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Things are not going well. I don't have the energy to write down the why's right now. I'm sad, tired, frustrated, and mad. I just ask that you please pray that we will be able to adopt Dana SOON.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Project MACH

I've mentioned Life2Orphans before on my blog in this post.  They offer various ways to help the orphans and orphanages in Dana's country.  One of their programs, called Project MACH, helps three different families who have taken HIV+ orphans into their families in a foster care capacity.  All of these families have between 6-8  kids and could use some extra help with items like clothes, toys, and toiletries.  Last October I sent a big box of stuff to the little girl we sponsor.  She's 9-years old and her name is Ira.  I included a letter telling her a little bit about us, some basic items like soap and toothpaste, a few fun things I thought she would like, and something small for each of her siblings.  Yesterday I received a translated letter from her and a CD slideshow with tons of pictures of her and the other kids!  It was so much fun to receive this update and know that she got our box and enjoyed the contents.  I need to start working on sending her another one so that it arrives in time for summer!

Not all of the kids in this program have sponsors yet.  In fact, one family has no sponsors.  :(  After receiving Ira's letter, I can tell you that it means so much to these kids and their families.  It's very easy and doesn't have to be super expensive.  You can choose the child you wish to sponsor and are even given some basic information about them, which helps when deciding what to include in the box.  You actually send the box to Life2Orphans in Portland and include a check for shipping to Dana's country (it's so awkard not to be able to name the country!).  The shipping rate is VERY reasonable compared to what you would pay if you shipped through USPS or FedEx.  I think my box cost around $40 to send...not bad at all.  This is a GREAT family project; my kids were so excited to fill the box for Ira and her brothers and sisters.  If you're interested in particpating in this program, check out the Project MACH page on the L2O website, or email Bethany, the program coordinator, at info@positivelyorphaned.org.

Monday, March 7, 2011

The dossier has arrived in Dana's country!

Dossier Drama

After spending last night in Cologne, Germany, our dossier has made its way to Warsaw, Poland.  I've been watching it all weekend and can tell you that it got off to a very slow start.  It never left Louisville until Sunday morning!  This stupid dossier has caused me to lose quite a bit of sleep this weekend.  I know...I need to relax about this, but that's kind of hard to do.  On Friday, the UPS clerk made a mistake when he entered the address I was shipping it to in the country I can't name.  Luckily I caught the error, but he had already processed the order so he had to cancel it.  This changed the tracking number, which he had already given me, and he never bothered to give me the new one.  All night (and I mean ALL night) Friday, I kept trying to track the package with no luck.  I was on the phone with UPS twice overnight and they couldn't figure out the problem either.  Of course, I thought it had been dropped in the parking lot by the delivery guy and was laying in a puddle somewhere totally ruined.  The lady at the 1-800 number told me she doubted this was the case.  (I was totally kidding...kind of).  Anyway, when the store opened on Saturday morning I went back over and we figured out what had happened.  I won't bore you with the details, but Saturday night brought a new set of worries, although since I was so tired from barely sleeping the night before, I sort of didn't care and fell asleep on the couch watching the Alvarez vs. Hatton fight.  Then on Sunday afternoon, I received an email from my RR helper telling me that Dana's country has changed the requirements for one of our documents and that I will need to redo it and ship it over so it can replace the one that hasn't even arrived yet.  Just when I thought I was done with the paperwork, I'm back at it.  This document requires copies of our 2010 W-2's which, of course, are at the accountant's office right now.  My plan for Monday had been to attend my MOPS playdate at the Children's Museum, but instead I will be stopping at the accountant's office to dig through our file and make copies of our W-2's, head to hubby's office to have them notarized (I'm giving your stamp a break, Emily!), get the thing apostilled, and head to the UPS store to express mail it.  That should pretty much take most of my day since I'll have Caleb and Sam with me and will probably have to stop 37 times to use a bathroom or get food.  Oh, and I get to spend another $100 to ship it after spending $135 on Friday!  Ugh!  Okay, I'll stop complaining now and just get it done.  After all, I know all this running around and frustration will be totally worth it in the end.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Dossier sent!

Our dossier is on it's way to EE!!  I'm so happy to know that it will soon be in the same country as Dana!  It should arrive by next Thursday and I'm sure that I will be tracking that envelope multiple times each day until it's safely in Yulia's hands. 

Matthew is home sick from school today so he went along with me to the Secretary of State's office to have our last document apostilled. 

The completed dossier.  By the way, look at the awesome parking spot I got right at the front door of the Government Center this morning.  It was raining, so I really lucked out!

 Sammy and me at the UPS store mailing the dossier.  Matthew took the picture.  :)

We moved from the "Compiling Dossier" to the "Almost There" page on Reece's Rainbow yesterday. One step closer...   


                                      

Thursday, March 3, 2011

We're Approved!

According to the ticker at the top of my blog, today marks 5 months since we committed to Dana.  Five LONG months of paperchasing and stressing and worrying.  Yesterday I was really hoping to hear something from USCIS since it was the day our officer thought she would have us approved.  I was checking my email every few minutes for most of the day hoping that our approval letter would magically appear in my inbox.  By 4:30 I hadn't heard anything so I decided to call our officer.  It was almost as if I was speaking to a different person than the one I talked with 2 weeks ago.  She was so nice and friendly and assured me we were next in line for approval and it would happen in the morning.  I thanked her, hung up the phone, and did a happy dance!  Sure enough, this morning a very ordinary form was faxed to my RR helper and then emailed to me.  This very plain but oh-so-coveted document now completes our dossier!!  I will take it downtown to the Secretary of State's office in the morning and have it apostilled and then on to UPS to overnight the entire dossier to EE.  It's a great feeling to know we're DONE with the paperwork, for the most part, and an even better feeling to know that we are mere weeks away from meeting Dana!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Like Dandelion Dust

I watched this movie over the weekend at the recommendation of one of my favorite bloggers, Christine at Smiles and Trials.  I honestly don't watch very many movies these days, so it was a treat to sit down and enjoy this one.  It was a really good movie and very thought provoking.  I could completely relate to and sympathize with both moms in the story.  The movie is based on a book, which I have heard is even better than the movie, so I might have to add it to my reading list.  The DVD extras had an interview with Karen Kingsbury, the author of the book, which was really interesting.  She and her husband had 4 biological kids and adopted 3 older boys from Haiti.  She shared their adoption story and told a bit about her family.  I found the movie on Redbox for only $1--totally worth it!

Here's the trailer:
 


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