Journey to Julia Video

James 1:27 – “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction”

Saturday, July 31, 2010

The long and winding road...

Things continue to move along, albeit a little slower as we reach the end of the first phase of the paper chase. We thought we had finished the last of our medical paperwork this week, but a couple forms need to be re-done and our doctor is now on vacation. We need to get the home study finalized so we can get that off to immigration to get the final phase moving.

If we needed any motivation, we found out recently that there is a deadline of Nov 1 to get our dossier accepted in the birth country, or they freeze new applications until Feb 1. 4 months! Backing that off a month for shipping, translation, corrections, etc we need to have our final dossier mailed by Oct. 1. Being that we are at Aug 1 that gives us 2 months. The problem is the USCIS although they can be as quick as a month, are sometimes taking 11 or more weeks!

Pray for quick homestudy completion and USCIS approval so our little girl doesn't get stuck waiting for four months on paperwork. We sure are!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Progress - keep the cards and letters coming

It has been ten days since our last post.  We are not the most prolific of bloggers eh?  Truth be told we have been very busy with medical physicals, document authentication,...  We greatly appreciate those of you who have commented on our story or connected with us.  It is very encouraging during this long and sometimes challenging journey.

Two important things have happened in this last week.  We are about at the point where we have completed all the paperwork for the dossier and homestudy that we can.  We're pretty close to being in waiting mode, dependent on a number of public agencies to respond (USCIS, Homeland Security,...).  We had a couple notarized documents that needed to be authenticated in far away towns and states that we sent out this week and need to wait for them to come back.  All documents that have been notarized to date in our own county have been authenticated and are ready for our big trip to the capital in Albany to get the whole package certified there.

The other thing is, we had our first contributor to our adoption fund.  Her name will be withheld to protect the innocent, but you know who you are, and we thank you.  Only $23K and change left to go.  ;-)

With so much paperwork behind us we took some family time Saturday to enjoy one of the great new sites of the Hudson Valley, the "Walk Over the Hudson".  For those that are not familiar with it, this is a state park built from an old abandoned railway bridge that crosses the Hudson River near the Mid Hudson Bridge at Poughkeepsie.  These few pictures will give you a sense how beautiful the Hudson Valley is. The walkway is a unique landmark due to it's high and unrestricted views in all directions. It feels like you really are walking through the clouds.

Walk Over the Hudson

It was a really enjoyable afternoon and our little guy slept through most of it in his stroller, and then woke up and sprinted the last quarter of the walk.

And to connect this all, the last picture above shows the county office building where we spent all our time Friday doing adoption paperwork (if you know where to look).

Hope you are all enjoying your summer's too! Bye for now.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The changes a year can bring

One year ago on July 3rd we returned to the US with our son from Ethiopia.  He was almost 2 and somewhat frightened by the sixteen hour flight home and these strange new things called seatbelts.

For this 4th of July, here is what our happy little immigrant looks like:

What an adorable little brother and sister.  Who but their heavenly Father could have known that these two little people with such different birth heritages and stories would come to be siblings?
This 4th of July we are thankful to have them in our family, just the same as their other brothers and sister. They really enjoyed the fireworks.

We hope by next July 4th to have another smiling little face to add to the mix!

On the current adoption front, we are completing paperwork and appointments fast and furious as you can see on our Timeline page.   We got out first official docs on the way to the birth country and completed our home study visit today as well!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

We are official!

Today we were quite excited to see that we are officially listed on the "committed families page" for Reece's Rainbow.  Those of you that know us, know that perhaps we should be committed for other reasons, but what this means is many other adoptive families can now track our progress and status as we move through our home study and dossier prep towards an official travel date.  It also means we have a "family support page" where people interested in helping sponsor such an adoption can do so safely, anonymously and in a tax deductible way.  Donating this way also guarantees people that the money will go towards this childs adoption even if for whatever reason we were not successful in completing the process. 

Each day brings new challenges as we get our backgrounds checked ten different ways, have four different kinds of fingerprints taken, and are generally scrutinized in every way imaginable.  But the tasks keep getting checked off, and we know each one takes us another step closer to the little face we long to bring home, and she has been waiting long enough.

Little milestones like this are an oasis along the way in the arid desert of adoption paperwork.  Keep us in your prayers, and chip in to  Jenny's fund if you are able. 

If you have an account with Paypal, the process is as simple as this:
1) Click on the "Bring Home Jenny" picture to the left
2) Follow "Click HERE to donate to this families adoption"
3) Click on the "Donate" Paypal button
4) List our family name and Jenny's name in the comment field for the donation

Or just send a check to Reece's Rainbow as mentioned on the family support page listing our name in the comment field on the check.

She and we will be forever grateful.  May God Bless you and yours!