Up, up, and away! My dossier left for Ethiopia yesterday!!!
Friday, July 27, 2007
Thursday, July 26, 2007
Nothing new on the adoption front. Hopefully my paperwork will be leaving the US tomorrow. Lindsay said Thursday or Friday and since I didn't hear anything today, I'm hoping for tomorrow!
Since I have nothing new to report, I thought I'd take a trip down memory lane. I thought it would be fun to scan in some old pix and post them. I hate having my picture taken but I love all the old ones from my childhood...I'm going to have to steal some from Mom and Dad the next time I go over so I can scan them in. Here are a couple of cute ones.
This is me in January 1981 (according to the note on the back). I was almost 3 and this is one of my favorite pictures.
Here is a picture of my brothers, Chad on the left and Todd on the right. Todd is 18 months older than Chad but Chad is already taller than his older brother, even at such a young age (sorry Todd!). Yes, we lived in WV and apparently were Pittsburgh Pirates fans (check out the caps). Also check out the records in the background. Again, this was probably around 1980-81 (Chad would have be 4-5, Todd 6-7).
I love this family portrait...Mom or Dad, maybe you could help me out with the date? I'm thinking 1980 (me 2, Chad 4, Todd 5 1/2 ?). Chad is already taller than Todd! In the background is a family portrait from when I was a baby...I'll try to get a copy of that to scan in--so 1970's!
Monday, July 23, 2007
My dossier is back from DC!!!! Lindsay says it will head to Ethiopia on Thursday or Friday!!!! YippeeSkippee!!!
What happens after it goes to Ethiopia, you ask? I copied this straight from my CHI newsletter. Once the dossier is sent to Ethiopia , it will arrive in 3, sometimes 4, days. It will be processed again in the Children’s Hope Ethiopia office and translated. The translations are taking 1 week at this point. The translations will then have to be authenticated. The dossier will remain with our in-country representative until the family is matched with a child. Then a brief summary of the documents in the dossier is written, and upon acceptance of the child, the dossier and summary is presented to the Ministry of Women’s Affairs (MOWA) for review. After approval of the dossier by the MOWA, a court date is set for the case to be reviewed and approved by the Judge in the court. The time frame from MOWA review to the court date is approximately 2 weeks. If there are living birth parents they will be a part of the court process and our in-country representative has Power of Attorney to represent the adopting families in court, and the adoption is finalized and is irrevocable by Ethiopian Law.
Remember, though, that the courts are closing from August 5th until Octoberish. Everything can proceed as above but halts at the point of waiting for a court date. This means that a referral could be forthcoming in the next few weeks (I'm guessing 6-8 weeks from now because it will be about 2 weeks before it gets there and translated, etc.).
Also, Congrats to Jenni and Jim--they got a court date before closure! If all goes well (and it will!), they will be traveling by the end of August!!
Sunday, July 22, 2007
Nothing new on the adoption front. Dossier is still in DC although Lindsay said it should be back on Monday (fingers crossed!). Then it will head out to Ethiopia! I called and made my appt with the Health Department for August 3rd. I'm thinking about changing it though...maybe checking out the UVA Travel Clinic. Several of the docs at work recommended trying it, they specialize in international disease-ology (yeah, I made that word up!). The nurse at the Health Dept was not nice on the phone. She was more worried about which side of the dividing line I lived on so she could bum me off on another district. Then she informed me that I had to get "everything." Sorry...but I'm only getting a couple of the recommended shots. I am getting the yellow fever shot; it is not required but I've heard that occasionally you will be given one when you get off the airplane if the receiving officials feel it's necessary. I'd rather get it before I go. Most of the others are low risk so I'll discuss it with the docs before I proceed.
This is what my house looked like on Thursday night. My friend Deborah (Kaili's mom--see blog on right) brought over "some clothes" for me and my sister-in-law to have. After 3 hours of sorting and repacking, I can confidently say that neither my daughter nor my niece will need any clothes for quite some time. In the garage is a rubbermaid full of 24 month/2T, another even larger container full of 18 months, and also one full of 6-9 and 12 months. The 6-9 and 12 month clothes are sitting in the nursery waiting on my sister-in-law Lesa to come over and go through with me. There was everything from playclothes to dresses, snowsuits and swimsuits, boots and shoes and socks! She also brought me a diaper genie and some toys, books, bottles, and an infant carrier (something that will definitely come in handy for the trip!).
She also bought me this great giraffe artwork piece as a present. I'm thinking I may actually hang it beside the door leading into the nursery. Thanks Deborah!!
My friend Shannon came over Saturday evening for a few minutes before I went to work. She brought one of her Great Danes (Josie) for Ollie-dog to meet. This is the first time that I ever saw him truly intimidated. Of course, he's never seen a dog that is taller than my grill! My cats were also quite spooked...which is unusual for them. Mickey usually hides under the bed and Sam climbs as high as he can...they just sat and looked at Josie--never hid, just sat there with their fur puffed up. Here is a great picture of Josie and Ollie...I think Ollie was confused and didn't really believe Josie was the same species. Or maybe it was because he could reach her butt to sniff and he doesn't understand anything that he can "sniff-test."
By the way...Josie is super well-behaved and it was very cool being able to pet a dog without leaning over!
Hopefully, I'll have more news to post in the next couple of days! I'll keep you "posted!"
Thursday, July 19, 2007
This week has been pretty good so far. Not just for me but for all my fellow adopters. Kevin and Stacie's court date on Wednesday went well and Micah is now officially their son! Congrats! This means they are allowed to post pix--so click their blog at the right. Now they are preparing to travel to bring him home! Jenni and Jim received a referral for a 3-month-old little boy on Monday--Congrats! No pix yet due to the Ethiopian rules and they are not revealing a name yet so keep an eye on their blog (also on the right) for updates.
My dossier is in DC. Lindsay is going to let me know as soon as it gets back and then heads to Ethiopia. Pretty soon is will be flying over that big, scary ocean! Hope the paperwork is less nervous about flying than I am! Hahahaha!
I started making lists for traveling...I am very list-oriented and I feel better when I write it all out. I even have a list of what lists I need! No point in forgetting anything because I didn't write it down. Hopefully some of the other bloggers out there that travel ahead of me will be able to tell me what to leave at home, etc.
That's all for now. I'm going to go watch some TV with Ollie--he is being very needy lately. He is in for a major shock soon!
Sunday, July 15, 2007
Wow, I didn't know I could get so much done in one weekend and still feel rested. After spending Friday with family (see previous post), I played with my MP3 player until about 2am. I was back up at 7am (thanks to Ollie!) so we took a LONG walk around the neighborhood--tested out the portability of my MP3. Then I decided to clean out the garage. The garage has been in sorry shape since before Christmas and was really a disaster after cleaning out Ollie's room to make the nursery. My two car garage could barely fit one. Now it looks so great--and there is now room for two cars (although that senario is about 16 years away unless by some miracle I find a husband!). My trash men are not going to be happy tomorrow!
After that, Mom and I went shopping. I priced diapers at Costco--not enough of a savings to make it worth the gas but I'll keep my eye on it. I did buy some more baby clothes there (they have Carter's at really great prices). Finally, someone is carrying fall/winter stuff. I got a couple long-sleeved playsuits with cuffed ankles and 2 very heavy fleece sleepers...the one for 12 months has non-slip feet! Which means walking age! It so hard to judge sizes right now but at least with sleepers and playsuits you can use them in any weather--just layer them, etc. Even the heavy sleepers will work in the summer with the AC going. Yes...I'm rationalizing again!
After shopping, I came home and blew up my MP3 player--don't know what happened, but it stopped working. After several hours of frustration, I just took a nap. Got up, barbecued a steak, ate dinner and read. My brother Todd and his wife Diana came over at 9:30 to try to fix my MP3. After over an hour, we finally tried tech support. They were actually very quick and very helpful. After finally figuring out what was wrong (actually we just determined that the player was kaput), I had to reformat the player and now it works great. I have already downloaded one book to it (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory--"comfort reading") and 181 songs.
Today, I got up and went to Wal-Mart. I spent way too much money but what else is new. I'm starting to get ready for travel (I know--a little early but I don't want to have to buy everything at the last minute). I got a charger for my MP3, a universal adapter, and a carrying case that will hold my camera, my MP3, my cell phone, and all the cords that go with these.
Now I'm washing clothes, just finished baking cookies, have chicken marinating for supper. The only thing left on the agenda besides finishing the laundry is scrubbing the bathroom--ugh! All in all a very productive weekend but it is only 3:30 in the afternoon...still time for another nap!
Hopefully this week will be a busy one for my dossier...should head to DC tomorrow and hopefully will return quickly!
Here are some new pix of my niece Madi.
Friday, July 13, 2007
So Friday the 13th was a great day. I had a very fulfilling week at work...lots of critically ill/injured patients (which is sad for them and their families but that's why I do my job and love it). Worked very hard and enjoyed it!
I celebrated the start of my weekend off by going to Dunkin Donuts and getting a plain bagel and a coke (I used to do this almost every morning but have curbed that habit to save money). Halfway through the day, I got a call from Sharon (director of the Ethiopian program) who was calling to explain some post-adoption procedures that I had asked about. We had a great conversation. What amazes me is that, while they do this every day as a career choice, everyone at CHI is so genuine in their happiness and excitement for each and every one of us. No one has been nonchalant or removed from the process...very caring. Then I got an email from my friend Deborah (that adopted Kaili last year) that was full of support and kind thoughts (as well as an offer for some outgrown clothes, toys, etc.--very exciting!).
Here's the party part:
I went to my brother Todd's house for dinner with the family (sorry you had to work Dad--we missed you!). I had asked my brother Chad (who works at Best Buy) to look for an MP3 player for me (to take to Ethiopia) when he and Todd went last Saturday. I was surprised that he couldn't find me a good deal. Well, it turned out that the two of them (with their wives) had bought me one for my birthday. Now...the story behind this is that my birthday was several months ago! We don't get into b-days too big and I guess they hadn't gotten me anything yet (I had forgotten). So, tonight they had a german chocolate cake and my presents! They got me an MP3 player and case...it is so cool! It holds music and audio books and also MOVIES! It has a little screen (with an amazing picture) and has 2G of memory. I might be able to handle the plane ride now! Such a sweet thing for them to do! Such a nice little birthday...I'm now 29 and 4 months!
So, the wonderful end to a nice week. I'm very tired but am really wanting to upload stuff to my MP3...so it might be a late night tonight!
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Called Lindsay on Wednesday (hey - that kinda rhymed!) to check status of my dossier. It appears that the mistake in the dossier has been fixed and my papers should be leaving on the fed-ex-mobile on Monday. Apparently, they kind of batch things and send them all on Mondays to DC. So hopefully they will be certified/authenicated without any problems and soon be flying over the ocean. We shall see. Have to work tonight but then I have a full 3-day weekend! First full weekend I've been off since the beginning of April. They offered me overtime Saturday and I was really tempted, but if I keep going without a break, I won't make it. So, I'm getting excited about my weekend off!
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
Here are my latest purchases...I got this great little playsuit at Cracker Barrell (who would have thought?) and I think it sums everything up perfectly. If you can't read it...it says "Hi, I'm New Here."
My brother and sister-in-law, with their new-found wisdom as first time parents, suggested that I start buying diapers or wipes every time I go to Wal-Mart. So with the help of some coupons that were about to expire and some great sales at Wal-Mart and K-Mart, I bought some diapers and wipes at close to half price. I bought sizes that were a little big because I didn't want to buy diapers that were too small.
I also bought these great disposable washclothes (another great coupon) that will be wonderful for the trip to the other side of the world.
In other news, another family received a referral today. The only thing we were told is that is was a referral for a sibling group (an infant and a toddler). Either the parents are not part of our chat group or they are laying low to tie their loose ends together. I can understand... when I get my referral, I will share it with my immediate family before I post (but don't worry fellow bloggers--I won't wait too long...at most an hour or two!). I also can understand that the family may not be on our chat group for their own reasons and our adoption agency has a committment to confidentiality. So while we are all dying to hear from the new parents and see pix, we may never hear anything. And that may be the way they want it. But hopefully it is just someone laying low for a day or two. Hopefeully there will be more referrals in the coming days.
No word on my dossier yet. Hopefully it will go to DC soon. Lindsay has been out of the office since Thursday so I haven't heard anything. But if there was a problem, I think someone from the St. Louis branch would have let me know since that is where my dossier is. So I'm hoping it is headed out soon!
Monday, July 9, 2007
Added a new link "Baby G." As we speak, mom is in the air (or should be) on her way to Ethiopia!
Posted by Jill at 1:54 AM
Friday, July 6, 2007
Thursday, July 5, 2007
My dossier made it to Lindsay on Tuesday. She found one mistake (I won't go into it because it would take me 2 hours to explain it) but hopefully we can get it fixed quickly and easily without any delay (they are working on it in St. Louis). Yes, that is right...Lindsay sent my dossier on to St. Louis (the main CHI branch) for them to check. They were supposed to get it on Thursday and since I haven't heard anything, I'm hoping everything is kosher. Hopefully sometime next week it will make it's way to D.C. I'm guessing that my dossier may make it to Ethiopia by the end of the month, maybe sooner. Then I wait for a referral. I need to call and make an appt to get my shots and start working on my house. The nursery is close to being ready but I need to rearrange some cabinets to acommodate baby bottles and little bowls, etc. I also need to review the house for some child proof issues. I'll save the washing of crib sheets and clothes (all that kind of thing) until I have a referral.
Oh...and the name. I want to narrow my choices down to about 3 or 4 and then once I have a referral, I'll be able to choose. Everytime I try to narrow it down, I just add more to the list. Current front-runners include Amaya, Elena, Gabrielle (Gabby), Isabelle (Izzy), Bethany, and Emily (Emmie). We'll see.
Got to spend some time with my niece Madison (after a 3 week hiatus thanks to a busy work schedule and a contagious virus) yesterday and today. She is almost 5 weeks old and really getting a personality now. She is so pretty! I'll post pix soon. I am upgrading to DSL today so pictures will be a lot faster to upload to post.
Picked up more overtime this weekend...my schedule has gotten so messed up at work (supposed to work every third weekend and I've worked 10 out of 12) so I figured I might as well work on my one weekend off! Can't pass up the money right now...might as well pack it in while I can. Money is definitely becoming an issue the further along in the process I get (come on tax time!). I have applied for a couple grants...not holding my breath but figured it couldn't hurt to try! I have also stopped eating out (to the tune of about $100 month--which is sad considering I enjoy cooking!) and have stopped buying Coke. I know....everyone just had a heart attack! I figured out I was spending at least $20 a week in Coke products! That will buy enough diapers for a week. So, no more Coke! So sad!
That is the update for now.
Monday, July 2, 2007
It's Done, It's Done!!!!!!!!!!
What can I say? Ahhhhh, sweet relief! Hopefully my dossier will be in Lindsay's hands by three pm Tuesday (guaranteed by UPS to be there by three). And now the waiting begins for real!
Sunday, July 1, 2007
Okay--this is post #49. If I time things right, post #50 should be that my dossier is done! My last post lamented the fact that the Secretary of State (acutally the Commonwealth--VA is very particular about that fact!) had not sent back my certified I-171H yet. However, I checked the tracking Saturday morning (wishful thinking, I guess) and I was surprised to see that it was on its way...it must have been put in a drop box because it hit the tracking at like 11pm. So, hopefully I'll get it Monday and then it is straight to the UPS Store--everything else is ready to go!
Looking forward to post #50--I guess I won't blog again until that happens. Hope it comes Monday otherwise I will have blogging-withdrawal.