Thursday, May 31, 2007
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
Friday, May 25, 2007
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Troy and I have been adding to our family through the adoption of animals since the week before we got married and these are our current babies!! Hopefully soon we'll be adding another 2 legged member to our family as we are currently out numbered!!
Jack – The 12 year old cat who is the very reason we are adopting a child. We have taken to putting him in baby shirts and pushing him around on his new favorite toy we bought for our new little one!! No really, Jack just had a tumor removed off his back and the shirt is in lieu of an Elizabethan collar around his neck. It keeps him from licking and keeps the site clean. Poor guy, just had the tumor removed, his teeth cleaned and then put in a baby’s shirt!! And what’s even worse? I humiliated him by taking the picture!
Jill – How creative were we with her name. She came to us about 5 years ago as a stray where she had been living in a barn with about 6 other kittens. Troy put on a glove and made a grab for a kitten. I pointed at a black one and said “That one”, and he grabbed and out came Jill and he said “This one.” Hence, Jill became a member of the family.
Elka – a Sharpei-Shepard mix who is the love of my life, after Troy of course. She is 9 years old and better live to be 100. She is the sweetest, most loving, most well behaved dog in the world. She won’t sit on command but will give kisses when asked. She loves to visit her “grandma’s house” and is just a wonderful girl.
Jerry – a mutt through and through and not yet a full fledged member of the family. He is the tan guy in the middle. He actually is a foster dog from the local SPCA where I spend one day each weekend as an adoption counselor. He was treated extremely poorly and was brought to the shelter by animal control. He was extremely shy and wouldn’t let anyone near him but me. He is currently learning how to be a dog!! He will now play outside by himself and has made himself at home. (I am sure he will be a permanent member soon!)
Ruby – a Heinz 57 brindle hound mutt!! She loves Troy and Troy only. She will only sit in my lap or cuddle with me when he’s not home. When he is, she is all about him and I do not exist!! Gotta love her although she thinks she’s a cat most of the time!! She has been with us for 2 years!!
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
So the process began.
The first step...calling Children’s Hope International (CHI) and asking for the application package. Then filling it out and waiting to hear if we were approved to continue. We received the approval on Troy’s birthday –December 7, 2006. At that time we were emailed the dossier documents and told we should start by applying to USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) and contacting homestudy agencies. We did both right away and were pleased when we received a fingerprint notice on January 3, 2007. Wow, this was moving quickly!! Even our homestudy went quickly as our agency agreed to meet with us on weekends and we scheduled the meetings as close together as we could. We received our homestudy on February 9th and sent it straight to USCIS. During this time we began the tedious process of collecting the documents for the dossier. Those of you reading who have adopted or are in the process you know just how many of those there are. For those of you who know, you can probably figure out how many there were by my level of stress over the documents and to Bambie, my good friend who notarized them all—thank you!!
So far the biggest snag we have had with the adoption was receiving our I171-H from USCIS. We had our prints done January 3, 2007, and they received our homestudy on February 9, 2007. They had sent us a letter stating the current processing time was 9 weeks. NINE WEEKS??!! I kept hoping they would come in early and finally in the 9th week I contacted our local congressman after trying to call USCIS myself and getting nowhere. Our congressman was kind enough to get a response from USCIS stating that a decision had been made but wouldn’t be sent to us until May 5th. We finally received it on May 8th (12 long weeks later) and our dossier went to Vladivostok “Vlad” on Friday, May 11, 2007. I suppose if this is our biggest issue of the adoption process then we are in good shape. Now the fun stuff...waiting. I have joined several online groups and been chatting with some great people. Troy and I have been out looking at baby stuff constantly but get discouraged about buying anything as we don’t know the age or size of the child. We have managed to pick up a few small things from stores, like the blanket we want to take and leave with the child and a new carry on bag for the plane for me that Troy said he’s be ok to carry (in other words it’s not too girlie!)
So here we are now.
A waiting family. Waiting to bring home a son to love, cherish and become a prosperous person and a member of our family. Troy can’t wait to teach him how to fish and hunt and if he doesn’t like either of those, then to cook instead. Me, I just can’t wait to be a mom. I want to teach our child how to play games, the value of family and I want them to learn they can always count on Troy and I for anything and everything they will ever need.
We are praying daily that God will bring us to the right child and the right child to us. So, even though we hate waiting we know God’s plan is at work for us.