Friday, March 31, 2006

Our First Interview!

Troy and I drove this morning to Bloomington for our first interview in the homestudy process! We came back with MORE paperwork to fill out! Many of it is personal and makes you think about how you really live and operate in this world as a individual, but also as a couple. I think all couples should have to fill this paperwork out! Maybe the divorce rate would be less, maybe there would be more mature and responsible parents, maybe more people would choose to marry instead of having children outside of wedlock...

Here is some of the material we have been reading and watching! China's Lost Girls video by National Geographic is fabulous! It really explains the one child policy in China and the problems that have come with it. It also follows a group of adoptive parents on their trip to China to pick up their daughters! It is definately 5 star material!

Monday, March 27, 2006

Things are Looking Up!

Yeah!!! Troy and I got our physicals scheduled for this week along with our first appointment with a homestudy agency! We decided to go with ABC Counseling and Family Services in Normal, IL. They are cheaper then the other agencies, plus they had the best customer service! We are also getting our passport pictures taken this week. A new Walgreens went in by our Dr. so we are going to be efficient and kill two birds with one stone! My passport is current, but we need to send passport photos in with our dossier. Troy is going to need two for the dossier and the other to send in with his old passport! It feels good to get the ball rolling! I was reading online where it is taking longer for referrels since Oprah did a show on the one child policy in China. In addition, Russia and Ukraine adoptions have been unstable, so people are switching to China. China has had three times as many people applying to adopt which has slowed down the process. At this point, we are OK with that. It gives us time to save more money and work on fundraisers. I am sure once we are finished with our Dossier, we will be anxious. In the meantime, we conitnue to push along and pray for our child(ren).

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Our Chinese Imperial Dog

Here are some pictures of Jack(son). He loves to sleep, chase rabbits and play with his hedgehogs! Troy and I decided it is only appropriate to stay in the tradition of adopting Chinese children since we already have a Chinese Imprerial dog... a Lhaso Apso.

Back to the paperchase...we mailed the application for Troy's birth certificate today and my birth certificate and marriage certificate went in the mail last Tuesday. Our first agency fee along with the signed and notarized service agreement and fee schedule go in the mail on Monday. We prefer to send those by certified mail,so.... On the schedule for next week is to make an appointment with our Dr. for physicals, get passport photos taken (Troy's needs to be renewed and we need to send extras in for both of us) select our homestudy agency and get fingerprinted. I have been calling and getting information on homestudy agencies in the area and it has been extremely frustrating! It looks like we will be choosing one in Normal, IL. They returned my phone call right away and were the only ones who offered to send information before I got a chance to ask. I was impressed by their customer service, plus, they are cheaper then the rest, but it still isn't cheap! It is amazing how the fees vary by each agency for the same service. I have been extremely frustrated with Lutheran Social Services of Illinois. I wanted to get info on their service since they are a part of our church body and sometimes pastor's get a price break in services. I have left 7 messages with them and only one has been returned. Even then, I gave the social worker my work phone, cell phone and home phone. She could have reached me if she really wanted, but... I don't know if they are under staffed and their caseloads are high, but customer service plays a huge role in our book! Hopefully the agency in Normal continues to impress us!

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Snow in Spring

Yesterday was the first day of spring and we had 4 inches of snow! This was the first time school has been canceled for me since Troy and I moved away from Texas! It was a great day to get things done around the house, work on adoption paperwork and read! While I was reading, I heard a bird chirping outside my bedroom window. There perched on the branch was a beautiful cardinal!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Our Story

Troy and I were accepted to adopt from China on 3/18/06! We sent our application to Chinese Children Adoption International out of Centennial, CO 3/14/06 and were estatic when we received the call our app was accepted! Adoption was always in the back of our mind and it was never an issue of whether to go for it or not, but after dealing with infertility for several years and having procedures fail on us, God kept planting the seed in our mind. We had two potential domestic adoptions that fell through and knew with international, it was a guarantee! We started researching countries and agencies, but felt led back to China. People ask us why China and we say, "Why not?" On our way to Alaska for Troy's brothers wedding, God kept on putting adopted Chinese children in our midst when we were in Chicago. While eating lunch at The Cheesecake Factory, a child was in the booth in front of us. Later on, two more families walked in with children. While killing time before we had to get to the airport, we walked Woodfield Mall. Once again, we ran into another family at Rainforest Cafe'! Troy and I stopped to talk with them and asked what agency they used! CCAI came up again. This was after I had talked to people about the agency they chose and we felt God was leading us to CCAI! Then the real kicker, we went to our friends church from seminary in Wasilla, Alaska and a girl was baptized at the 8:00 service who was adopted from China! Once again, God was speaking to us!

So now our application has been accepted for either a boy or girl and we requested we were open to twins! Now the paperchase, fundraisers and grant writing begins! We cannot wait!