Saturday, April 21, 2012

Meeting Naomi

March 8th:  We (Mom, Dad, 2 kids, and Grandma) left Texas
March 9th:  We arrived in Beijing.
March 10th:  Flew to Nanning, Guangxi
March 11th:  SHOCK!  China was NOT what we imagined! 
March 12th:  We met Naomi.
March 13th:  We finalized Naomi's adoption.
March 14th:  We got to know Naomi.
March 15th:  We went to Liuzhou to see Naomi's orphanage and meet her foster parents.
March 16th:  We got Naomi's passport and final adoption paperwork.
March 17th:  We flew to Changsa, Hunan

Naomi was the oldest child (by far!) being adopted that week.  Children had been brought from different towns in the province to meet their parents at the Civil Affairs Building in Nanning.  She was very timid and shy.  I don't think she spoke at all while we were at the office building. 

We brought her a gift, a purple dress.  (We had gotten a size that would have fit our 9-year was WAY too big!)  She seemed very uncomfortable opening it.  She had brought us gifts--friendship bracelets that she had made.

After we got back to the hotel, she quickly bonded with my other two girls (ages 9 and 7).  They bonded over Barbies and jewelry. 

(They have been together over a month and I still haven't heard any real arguments.) 

It took Naomi a few more days before she trusted her new parents, but she eventually got there.  :)

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

China Bound!!!

We have our flights.  We leave on the 8th!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
We pick up our Visas in a few hours. I should be sleeping.

Don't you hate when you wake up with a to-do Liston your mind? Unfortunately for me....none of the items on my list can be done until our agency gives the go-ahead to buy tickets.

Yesterday we received our I-800 approval. For those of you that have NOT done an international adoption, that means that the US has given their final approval for us to bring BOTH girls into this country. There is very little left that I can do other than "nesting".

People have told me that they forget the pain of child birth shortly after the baby is born. The same thing happens with adoption. After one child is in your arms, you forget the paperwork and the stress of adopting her. I don't know about other adoptive moms, but I also forgot about the boatload of Tums I was taking every day, because I was so stressed. I forgot about all of the times I woke up in the middle of the night to make sure that I had packed an "essential" item (stuffed lion, puréed prunes, 2 sizes of nipples, etc).

The only thing I didn't forget was the post-adoption depression. I don't know how much of it was related to the fact that I was 25 years old and had NO IDEA what I was doing and how much was related to the fact that we brought K home and I had hormones going everywhere because I promptly got pregnant....I just hope that I can avoid that this time around.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

As I am typing this, I am in Houston waiting for the Chinese Consulate office to open. (We will have our Visas tomorrow!)

We have 12-days left before we MUST be on a plane and there is still SO MUCH left to do! Other people that have had to rush to beat China's deadlines have told me that I have plenty of time, but I'm still worried about the timeline...

I have to take a second to compliment Kris and Morgan. We were told to submit our Visa applications at 1:00. Since then, I have been in spastic-mode finding hotel addresses and typing Visa applications and getting passport photos for everyone. (Why didn't our agency give me a heads-up about this before the weekend?!?!). While I was doing that, my kids put together lunch and snacks for themselves and their 3 cousins that were over for the day. They even cleaned up footprints after a dog came in muddy! They were totally independent for several consecutive hours--WOW!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

I am doing my HAPPY DANCE!!!

I have SO MUCH respect for the people that work in the adoption division of immigration! However...the officer assigned to our family needs to be transferred far, far away! (He has been totally unhelpful with getting our file expedited.)

Fortunately, his supervisor is WONDERFUL! She has agreed to expedite our paperwork herself! (WOW!!!) Yesterday, she called our agency to get the receipt number (from it being checked into their office). She will be getting it from the mail room herself and processing it ASAP!!!

I am over-the-moon happy!

On another husband said that I can tell EVERYONE that we are bringing home TWO kids as soon as we get our I-800 approved.  I am really looking forward to telling my other kids...and making a bazillion phone calls! :)

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

How we "met" our girls:

Someone suggested I share how we were introduced to our to-be-soon-adopted-daughters.

With Leina, we recieved a middle of the night email and photo.  The team that searches the shared-list for children that meet your criteria live in Missouri, but works China-hours, so it's not uncommon to be woken in the middle of the night with good news!  :)  The next week was spent rushing to get paperwork to China before their 72-hour deadline.

I absolutely LOVE our adoption agency!

We were introduced to Naomi with an email written by someone advocating for kids that have almost aged-out.  I have a HUGE amount of love and respect for these people! 

One of them put together a brief you-tube video about her: 

At this point, Leina is a done-deal.  Depending on paperwork processing times, we might not be able to hold her until April, but she's OURS! 

Naomi, is still going to be down-to-the-last minute.  I am hoping like crazy that immigration approves our I-800 by Friday.

Losing Hope...

Two weeks ago, my husband shocked the bajeebers out of me by telling me we were going to adopt Naomi / Kate.

Tonight, I read him an email about another child that was aging-out. He didn't even want to hear that child's info.   He gave the typical "Josh" response that I had expected him to give about Naomi.

This young boy has had his time run out. A family needed to commit to him by today. He is no longer available for adoption. He will go through the rest of his life without a family. It breaks my heart!

It amazes me how God works on people's hearts at specific times.  I know HE has a plan, but sometimes, I would like to see the basic outline.