Thursday, April 30, 2009

First visit with home study agency on Tuesday.

We got a call yesterday to schedule our first visit with our home study agency. We get to meet with them next Tuesday. This first visit will be at their office and will last about 1 1/2 hours. We will be going over all of the paperwork that will need to be put together over the next couple of weeks. I am really looking forward to this first meeting and receiving more information about the process. Fortunately, we also have a call scheduled on Monday with FTIA, our adopton agency, to go over the process with them as well. Next week will be one informationally-packed week!

Another bit of exciting news is about a fundraiser. Kevin and a couple of other guys from our home church meet every Thursday morning at about 6:15 for a Bible study. Most often they find themselves at Chik-fil-a, a Christian-run fast food chain/restaurant. They said that we could do a fundraiser there one Thursday night where a portion of all the food purchased will go towards our adoption! Yeah! That will be exciting. We will have to do some good planning and figure-out some ways to draw in customers as we will be responsible for all of the advertising. We will keep you posted on when that is going to happen. Most likely it won't be until June or after.

Until next time,


Wednesday, April 29, 2009

A hunting we will go - for turkeys, a marriage license and birth certificates!

We were looking into getting copies of our marriage certificate and birth certificates online when we realized that we could just go in person to get them - that way we won't have to wait about 6 weeks to get them in the mail. We had been planning a trip to Michigan for the tulip festival on the west side and turkey hunting on the east side and since Lansing is right in the middle we can just stop in to get our state sealed and authenticated copies of our birth certificates. Then we can get the copies of our marriage certificate in between when Kevin and Tyler are out turkey hunting :)

Speaking of turkey hunting, at about 4:30 this morning Kevin and Tyler got up to go do a little turkey hunting here in Indiana. Kevin had requested eggs so I got myself up and made a couple for each of them. Tyler was surprised that I was up and cooking them the eggs - my usual routine for when they are going hunting is to pack them a breakfast and lunch the night before so that I can stay in bed when they leave before it is light outside.

After they left I got back in bed with my adoption folder and started writing a letter to China. Everyone who adopts from China has to write a letter to them saying why they want to adopt, promising to take care of the child just like you take care of your own children, that you would never harm him/her and so on. The letter was on my heart the night before and I am so glad that I was able to get down my first draft of it. I ended up finishing it after 5:00, turned off the lights and fell back to sleep happy that I had started on one more step to bringing our daughter home.

In His name,


Monday, April 27, 2009

We have been accepted!

Yeah! What a blessing! We have been accepted into FTIA's China Waiting Child program!

For China, most agencies have two programs that you can choose to adopt from. The first is what I look at as the healthy and typically as young as possible program. The other program, for a waiting child, has children on it because they have a special need. Many have cleft lips or heart problems. There are children with spina bifada, club feet, blindness, deafness... some of the children have been blessed already with an operation to correct their special need, but China doesn't remove them from the list - they keep them on it. Other children may be on the list simply because of their age. If a healthy child is getting older and still hasn't found a family of their own, China may put them on the waiting child list.

Kevin and I have given a lot of thought to what age range of child would fit best into our family. We decided that we didn't want to go out of birth order and that we want our children to feel like they can really help in taking care of their new little sister. We are interested in adding another lovely, little girl to our family who is up to 3 years old. We are one or two steps into the process of adding her to bringing her home already.

This last Friday Kevin mailed out our application to our home study agency so we are waiting to hear back from them. And just a little while ago we all went to the courthouse to pay for everyone's passports. Mine is still good from when we went to Ukraine, Kevin has to renew his, and we had to get the children their own.

We are taking the children with us when we go - for a few reasons. One is that we have family in China. Kevin's brother Brad lives there with his wife, Jieying, who is Chinese. Two, is that we have spoken with many, many parents who have already adopted from China. They said that if there was any way at all that we could bring our children with us then we should bring them. It helps the child you are adopting to see how your children interact with you and it helps with the attachment and bonding process. And third, we love our kids! We have have a blast with them, and are totally excited about this opportunity to travel to another country with them!

So how long will it take for us to be able to go to China to pick up our new daughter? About a year for a waiting child. Of course, we are aiming for a 9 month "labor" :) It's on God's timing though, which is a lot better than ours could ever be!

In His name,


Thursday, April 16, 2009

No longer will we first remember April 15th as tax day!

We did it. Kevin and I sat down together two nights ago and finished filling out our adoption application to FTIA - Families Thru International Adoption. April 15th will no longer be remembered first in our minds as tax day, but rather as the day that we made our adoption official by mailing in our application to our agency.

Once FTIA receives our application we should hear back from them within about 48 hours as to whether or not we meet the requirements for China's adoption program. As soon as we hear back that we are accepted (expecting that to be early next week) into the program we will call and schedule what is called a home study. The entire process of the home study and gathering the necessary paperwork for it could take about 2 months so we are just itching to get started!

I want to say thank you to all of you who are joining us - either in person or in spirit - on our journey to add another child to our family. We thank God that He has opened up our eyes to this amazing opportunity and the blessings that we will experience because He has provided us with the ability to bring another one into our family.

Our family photo for the application