Monday, August 31, 2009

Dossier Progress!

Let me just say this: If you have a major project you need to tackle, the best thing to do is to have your inlaws come for two weeks and schlep your kids around from one adventure to the next for days on'll get a lot done!

Here's the list of what needs to go in our dossier (and it all needs to be notarized, too):
1. Application letter
2. Husband's Birth Certificate-requested, still waiting
3. Wife's Birth Certificate-requested, still waiting
4. Marriage certificate-requested, still waiting
5. Husband Physical Exam Form.
6. Doctor's letter
7. Wife's Physical Exam form
8. Doctor's letter
9. Proof of medical insurance
10. Proof of life insurance
11. Financial statement
12. Husband's employment letter-working on it.
13. Husband's 2nd job employment letter
14. Wife's non-employment letter
15. Home Study
16. Letters of Reference (3)
17. Husband's Police Report
18. Wife's Police Report
19. Agency Post Placement Agreement
20. Agency Recommendation
21. Power of Attorney
22. Dossier Cover Sheet
23. 2 extra passport photos each
24. Copies of passports.
25. Family photo pages

As of a week ago, I had just 2 of the 25 required papers (# 5 and #7 in italics). Everything in bold has gotten completed just this past week...and it's all notarized, too! It feels sooooooo good to have the weight of this lessened, and to know that much of what we still need is out of my control. I am so grateful to mom and dad for all their help while they were here...the kids had a wonderful time making memories with them, and we're that much closer to our baby girl!

Friday, August 21, 2009


Have you noticed our list of adoption expenses in the sidebar?
Take a look at #5 and #6. Doctor visits for both of us.

We thought Mark's insurance would have covered his, but because the blood work our agency requires isn't deemed as "usual or necessary" by the insurance company, most of his wasn't covered. I have just a major medical policy, so we knew mine would be more expensive, though I'll admit we were a bit blown away by how much it costs to have extensive blood work done.

So here we sat with $748 in medical bills. Having gone through Providence Medical Center, we decided we had $748 to lose and who knows how much to gain if we didn't apply for their financial assistance program. I submitted the necessary forms weeks ago, and we've still been waiting to hear back.

Today, we received the Financial Assistance Approval letter. "Thank you for your interest in our Financial Assistance Program. We are please to notify you that your application has been approved. The level of Financial Assistance that you qualify for it 100%."

What more can we say? Hallelujah, God is good!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

For lack of a better word...

I know the word "weird" isn't exactly descriptive, not on the top ten list of words used by skilled writers. But sometimes it works for lack of a better descriptor.

I took the kids on a Tot Time field trip to the fire department on Monday. There was only one other mom from MP; most were from S, so I didn't really know any of them.

At some point during the tour, it came up that the volunteer firefighter giving the tour was pregnant, and the questions revolved around how that would affect her work at the station. And lo and behold, there were at least 2 other moms there who were also pregnant, all of them due around the same time.

The conversation turned to morning sickness, prenatal yoga, and due dates.

I wanted to chime in just as excitedly, just as eager to share my news as they were to share theirs. "I'm expecting a baby, too!"

But imagine the conversation.
"Oh congratulations! How are you feeling?"
"Would you like to come to prenatal yoga with us?"
"Well, um, thank you, but..."
"Well, when are you due?"
"Hopefully by next Christmas!"

Seriously. How does one interject into a conversation like that with a bunch of strangers?
I only saw one not to. (Yes, one of our favorite lines to repeat from the movie Cars).

I don't fault the other women one bit, and I'm sure they would have been excited for me if I had shared. But the whole feeling I had during their conversation was a brand-new experience for me, and it was

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Home Study Visits. Check.

We are almost over the big hurdle of our home study! Our visit yesterday went much better than I water and all!

Of course with coming down from Anchorage, the first thing she asked when she got here was if she could use the bathroom! I simply let her know that our pump was in the process of being fixed, so we don't have water today, but here's the bathroom, don't flush, here's baby wipes for washing up with, I'm sorry for the inconvenience! It didn't seem to phase her a bit!

She asked Andrew for a tour of the house, which he was happy to do. Ironically, she didn't even see the girls' room, since Anna was taking a nap...but she basically just wanted to see how many bedroom/bathrooms were in the house. She was also impressed with our basement, "what a great playroom," to which we owe a debt of gratitude to our NC VBS team!

(The basement had been a huge worry of mine. Regrettably, I neglected to take a "before" picture. But just imagine a construction zone...with having just finished the apartment remodel job on the other side of the basement, we had boxes of plumbing parts, piles of electrical outlets and wires, a mound of insulation, bits and pieces and sheets of drywall, enough tools to outfit a hardware store, an extra toilet and bathroom sink laying around, and enough dust to create a man out of...all of this covering and creeping over every part of the basement so that we could harldy walk through it. Sound like a perfect part of a family home ready to be inspected by a social worker concerned about the safety of children? Hardly. Mark and I had just the night before asked ourselves how many years it would take to clean it all up. Knowing my concerns, the team came home from VBS on Tuesday afternoon and had the place gleaming and organized. I kid you's an awesome sight to behold)!

At any rate, she was here for about 2 hours, tapping away at her notes on her laptop as we talked and as she interviewed Mark. The kids were extremely cooperative, answering her questions when needed, and playing quietly when not.

The only downside is that she didn't end up coordinating our visit with another family down in we'll have a bigger chunk to pay for her travel expenses than we hoped for. But we already have almost half of the $650 that will be due...and I'm sure that God will provide the other half before we need it!

All in all, Judy was very encouraging about everything, and said she would have it written up for us to review in short order! Praise Jesus!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Home Study visits are today!

We would be grateful for your prayers for a good visit with the social worker a mere 2 hours! This will be Judy's first and only time to our house, which, incidentally, hasn't had a drop of running water since Saturday night. Not exactly the "tip top" shape I was striving for.

She will interview Mark first, who also, incidentally, hasn't had more than 5 hrs. of straight sleep a night for over a week now. Yes, that's directly related to our water situation.

Then she'll talk with both of us together, particularly about parenting our three angelic cherubs whiney kids who are overtired from VBS all week and are missing daddy time, since he's been spending an inordinate amount of time with our water system down in the basement.

Do you see now why I'm asking for prayer? Thanks!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Coffee Name Change

You may notice that the link on the sidebar for the Coffee Fundraiser has changed. Instead of One Love Coffees, it's now Just Love Coffees. I personally kind of like the name change, and hopefully you'll like the name and the coffee! Here's the scoop (no pun intended!).

After being on the phone with our attorneys all week, we have changed our name to Just Love
Coffee Roasters. The children of Bob Marley are attempting to register and protect the name "One Love" as it pertains to, not only, coffee, but every industry. So we decided to go back to the drawing board to come up with an alternate name. We believe that "Just Love" is actually more
synonymous with our mission. We like the dual meaning of the word "just" as it relates to the orphan crisis and our efforts to do our small part in helping. We are currently redesigning all of our artwork, working with our web team to make the necessary changes and getting all of the
paperwork filed with the State and Federal government. We apologize for the confusion and look forward to getting everyone up and running in a short time.

Saturday, August 1, 2009


Well, not usually. But on rare occasions, yes.

You know how I just spent $97.25 on original certificates from NY?

On Sunday, Kindra (our church treasurer) passed along an anonymous gift.


Are you kidding me?

No, God is pretty serious about blessing us. Wow.