Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Not once have I thought...

how lucky the little girl will be who we adopt. I have had a few people tell me this. Not once has it crossed my mind that she is the lucky one. Instead, this is what comes to my mind quite often:

Thank you, God, for opening our eyes to adoption. There are so many children who need a family to call their own. We are incredibly blessed to be able to add another daughter to our family. I can't wait to see who she is, Lord, and to go get her. Imagine, another little girl to cuddle with, to tuck-in under the covers at night, and eyes that light up with excitment at little things that we may take for granted... and hugs - they are one of my favorite things in the world, and I can hardly wait until the day I get one from our new daughter.

We are the "lucky" ones.

In His name,

The Burgess Family

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Officially done with home study!

We are officially done with our home study and have 4 copies to prove it! One is for our records, one for our agency, one for our dossier, and one for CIS.

CIS stands for Citizenship and Immigration Services and is a part of Homeland Security. Every U.S. citizen who adopts must get approval from CIS - so that is what comes next. To get that approval we fill out an application and send in supporting documents, like birth and marriage certificates, along with $680 for the application to be processed and $80 for Kevin to get his fingerprints taken for a FBI criminal background check and $80 for mine. That total comes to $840 - and we have it thanks to all of the generous donations! When the CIS processes our application we will get approval in the mail along with when we can get our fingerprints taken in Indianapolis. At that time we will also be able to send a ton of paperwork to Chicago where the Chinese Consulate for the People's Republic of China is located for Indiana. All the documents that have already been authenticated by the United States (they have a gold seal on them) will now be authenticated by China. After we get that paperwork back, we can finally send our complete dossier to our adoption agency so that it can be sent to China. If by this time we still haven't been referred a child off from the waiting child list, we will be put on another list - but this time with China.

While all this is going on we can, at any time, get a referral for our daughter. Each month China sends out to each of the agencies that China works with a list of children that are available for adoption. Our agency reviews the list to see if any of the children will match with what our family has described as the best match for us - like a girl who is up to 3 years old with a minor heart condition. If she is on the list and no one is ahead of us with the same requirements, we will get the referral. Our agency, Families Thru International Adoption, also receives their own private listing of children that they can find families for. Our daughter may also come from this private listing.

Special thanks - our puzzle now has the complete border on it and a few more pieces added to the inside! We want to say thank you to those who have recently donated. They live in Maysville, Georgia and Indianapolis, Indiana!

Thank you!

The Burgess Family

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Thank you's - and some updates

I want to say a special thank you to my parents. Two weekends ago they let us have a yard sale at their house in Michigan. We were able to pack in a few items to sell from our home in Indiana, but the rest of the items were all theirs! They had gone through their house for the sale and donated all of the proceeds to our adoption. Thanks to their kindness and to all of those who stopped by to shop and those who made donations, we were able to raise $500! If any of you are on here reading this who stopped by the sale, I want to let you know that I enjoyed talking with you - and I did learn something important - from now on our signs will say "Child Adoption Fundraising Sale", instead of just "Adoption Fundraising Sale". We had a lot of people stop in who thought we were raising money to adopt an animal :)

I'm really excited about the new donations made to the puzzle fundraiser. With the ChipIn button we can't include donations that were given to us by hand or mailed in so we added a thermometer tracker to show the right total. It is at the bottom of the page. Thank you to those who recently donated - we really appreciate it and you can see that the border of the puzzle is almost completely connected thanks to your generosity.

Sadly (and a bit frustratingly if that's a word), we are not "officially" done with our homestudy yet. We are waiting on our criminal history background checks from when we lived in Georgia. Our adoption agency has reviewed the homestudy though and all the corrections have been made. As soon as we get that last piece of information we can package up all our paperwork and get it authenticated. I believe we have to send it to Chicago. I have a call in to our homestudy agency to see if they can let me know when we might have it back. It could be this week or even three weeks from now...

Oh! We were approved to work with a not-for-profit called Kingdom Kids. What it means is that if you donate to our adoption through them you will be able to write it off on your taxes. I'll try to get more information about Kingdom Kids and how to donate through them later in the week.

In His name,

The Burgess Family