Here are our crazy animals in our backyard on squirrel patrol.
Grissom (the cat in the tree) is the newest member to our family.
At ground level is Kyler, our dog. She is the best dog ever.
The photo shows our squirrel chasers. The squirrel at the top of the photo, arrives daily around the noon hour. Kyler and Grissom spend most of their afternoon watching and chasing the squirrel from tree to tree. It is quite comical at times.
We do not have a name for our unoffical squirrel pet. In fact, help us name the friendly squirrel that torments our favorite dog and cat.
We will post photos of our turtles (we have three of them) at a later date...
Friday, March 31, 2006
Monday, March 27, 2006
Well, it's an army crawl, but we're slowly but surely getting there. I got back my physical form written clearly this time (because I rewrote it). It's all signed and notarized and everything. However, something even MORE exciting happened today. We got our rough draft of our homestudy (4 weeks and 3 days later---they were pretty speedy) via email today! WHOO HOO! Now Tony and I just need to sit down and make a few corrections on it. It says that Tony HAS a caucasian male, when actually, he IS a caucasian male. It also says that I was born and raised in Richmond, not Fountain City. Anyway, we'll edit it, fax it, and wait on the final copy. This is huge news because once the final copy has been sent to our agency and to the Department of Homeland Security, we can get our LAST set of fingerprints done! GOD IS GOOD!
Ok, so I'll do a quick to do list
- Edit and fax homestudy draft
- Get our letterhead copies of our local criminal history checks--should be tomorrow
- Fax my physical form to our coordinator to check for neatness
- Write our letter of intent
- DO the parent workbook--yikes, we're behind!
Ok, ok, I know I just told our IDX group that everyone needs to slow down and not "wish their lives away" but I still have to do the DTC count-down....after I explain a little about how the DTC works (we just got an email from our coordinator regarding this). Once we send our dossier to FTIA (our agency) on June 12, it will take about 3 days for them to translate it (no Jarrett, to Chinese, not Spanish!). Then, they send them all to China on Friday, which should be June 16. THEN, we'll anxiously await our LID or Log In Date. This is the date we officially go on the books in China and the TRUE wait begins. Right now FTIA is saying the wait is 9-10 months for a referral (the picture and medical info on Abby). SOOOOOOOOOO, what I'm saying is, please pray for God to move mountains (and the wait time too :) ) . No, really, pray for His timing to be perfect for our family and all the others waiting on their little ones to come home.
Ok, now, countdown till DTC (well, not China, but dossier to FTIA) is: 2 months and 16 days!
Thanks for all of your support, love, and prayers! Keep 'em coming!
Friday, March 24, 2006
Well, needless to say, we were very surprised to hear several of you say that you check our blog daily! Evidently, you were upset that we hadn't posted in a few days. We are SO glad you're reading this, but please POST A COMMENT so that we know someone's enjoying it. Comment and questions are welcome!
OK, on to the business at hand. We got our local criminal history checks back, and WHEW, no records! Unfortunately, they didn't put it on department letterhead so it will have to be redone. Hopefully, we'll have that back next week.
Something neat this week is that Tony I have been able to do is email back and forth with a person we met on the FTIA message boards. Rhonda has been a very valuable resource to us. She has a 4 year old daughter, Millie, that she brought home a couple of years ago. She is now pursuing her second daughter. She has been honest about the challenges we might face, and she has given us a window into the joys we'll experience.
Rhonda has told us about issues we may or may not encounter with Abby. Millie had a little trouble with hitting/head butting Rhonda when she first brought her home. I suppose this was some type of communication issue although Millie could not yet talk. Maybe she had trouble expressing her emotions. She also said a lot of the little girls will have night terrors when they get home. Most will taper off over the weeks and months, but to be aware that might occur. She's even giving us links to do some research. I told her about Jarrett and how he used to have those periodically. I suppose stress in a child's life can have that effect.
On the positive side, she affirmed that it's ok for us to keep shopping!!! She said to look for 12-18 month clothing that would span a couple of seasons. PJ's are also important to buy too, and they always get forgotten.
Speaking of shopping, in the back of "Adoptive Families" magazine we get, there was an ad for a website with Asian-related materials. I'm going to post it here for anyone who might want to look at it. We will probably eventually do a wish list on it so you'll have an idea of what we would like. The website is: www.asiaforkids.com
Thanks for keeping up with our journey. As we take further steps, we'll post more. We LOVE you!
Keep praying for our Abby-girl!
Friday, March 17, 2006
Um, yeah, that title would mean much more if we drank...because we went to Little Sheba's tonight for a young adult networking night and they were selling $1 drafts. Silly drunks, our soda was FREE!
Ok, on to other stuff. It was a pretty low key week. We're kind of in a holding pattern right now. We have our reference letters and financials notarized and are sleeping soundly in the mail on their way to the Adoption Support Center in Indy. We should be getting our local criminal history check any day now, and our official Homeland Security appointment soon. In the mean time, we're checking all adoption boards, chatting on FTIA.org, and trying to figure out what Rett's schedule will look like this summer with Safety Town and such. We're trying to figure out if we can swing a mini-vacation in July..to DISNEY...hahahahahahahah ok, not really, but a girl can dream can't she? More like the jacuzzi room at Lee's Inn in Richmond. HA!
Well, our financials are done! We've had them notarized and everything! (Thanks Robin!) We also have our last reference letter in and should be happily floating through the mail this weekend. Hopefully, we'll be getting our rough copy of our homestudy late next week or the following. THAT will definitely be a milestone! We'll look it over, make sure all the numbers match up, then send it back to be finalized!
We are also waiting for our letter to get fingerprinted. I was hoping it'd come this week and be scheduled for my spring break week so that I wouldn't have to take a day off to get it done. Ahh well, taking a day off (or half day) w/ Tony isn't so bad :) Even if we DO have to go wait in line at a government office! I'd do that ANY day!
Ho hum, otherwise nothing much is going on . I'm counting down the days until the end of school. And I have lots to keep me busy in the mean time. I am leading IDX next Tuesday night, and I'm in a drama at church at the end of the month. I see those faces. You KNOW I'm the perfect person to be in a drama!
OK, things I'm counting down... (I know, I know Mom, "Don't wish your life away")
---Days till Spring Break--5 school days, 7 if you count this weekend
---Weeks till Summer Break--8 weeks if you don't count the week off for spring break
---Months/weeks till DD--2 months and 25 days!
Sunday, March 12, 2006
We were invited to attend the International Adoptive Families group meeting and they met on Saturday night. It was a surreal experience. There were families and children there in all stages of the adoption process. There were families waiting on referrals, families who had recently returned, and families that had been home for quite some time. The children ranged in ages from an 11 month old, to a seven year old. One little girl, Fedon (I think) came from Azarbayjan (sp?) and another family was waiting on their daughter from India. Otherwise, the girls were mostly from China. The 11 month old just came home two weeks ago. She was SO cute. Two of the girls were wearing the infamous "squeaky shoes" from China. We evcn got to see the 11 month old do the Chinese splits when she went from a sitting position to a crawling position. The whole evening was a very valuable experience where we learned a lot about the wait, and what to expect once we get home with Abby. It was also just nice to get to see the joy and life that each of these girls brought to their families. It makes us even more excited to be a part of God's plan.
Thursday, March 09, 2006
The bedding is in, and beautiful :) One day Abby will be able to enjoy it :)
Our financial forms are done, and we started the forms for our local criminal history checks.
--wait on letter of reference from one person
--get local criminal history check done
--have Dr. notarize my form again (he wrote too crazy on the first one)
--write our intent to adopt
--get Dept. of Homeland Security fingerprints
--get preapproval to adopt an orphan
--get homestudy back and edit
--get passports back and photocopy
--get everything authenticated
--send to china
--wait some more
--bring Abby home!!!!!!!!!!!!
Whew, I'm tired just from writing it.
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
Monday, March 06, 2006
Ok, I know this is cheesy, but I cannot figure out how to post pictures to the blog. Can anyone help? This photo was already loaded on the computer. When I download pictures and try to post them, I get an error message. Anyone, PLEASE HELP! Thanks, Tony.
This weekend Robby and Allyson purchased me a sweet RC18T. A RC18T is an 1/18 scale radio controlled stadium racing truck. It has 4 wheel drive, electronic speed control and came RTR (Ready to Run). He also purchased a peak charger for me. Now we can race. He too has a RC18T truck.
More to come...
It was a great conference that we attended in Indy on Saturday. It was called "The Journey Through Adoption" and it was very informative. Mostly, we learned about health issues that may or may not be a concern with Abby. We also learned about bonding issues and what to do/not to do when we get home. It was very valuable :)
Also, Robby surprised Tony with an R/C car that he had been wanting. Thanks guys :) He has already played with it non-stop like a 5 year old! (and if he isn't playing with the car, he's looking on Ebay for accessories for it!)
Ok, that's it, that's all. We'll update you when things get exciting.
Friday, March 03, 2006
We got our Abby bracelets in! They're great! People are already asking about them. :) Hopefully Abby and her birth mom feel our prayers every time we look at them.
Tomorrow we're off to a conference in Indy on all things adoption. We'll fill you in on any new insights we gain!
Happy birthday to our family this week...Kristy and Big Tony :)