Thursday, January 29, 2009

Our New Kid's Bathroom

Check out Kellar's awesome work in our newly decorated kid's bathroom!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

I did it

I have successfully figured out how to get pictures from a digital camera onto the computer and ultimately this blog.  Yes, I know I am slow in this.  I have just relied on Kellar to do this.  He is at CCF right now and I wanted to post some pictures from last weeks snow.  See now I can post snow pics the day of or after instead of a week later.  Yes, Greenville had snow last Tuesday January 20th and Wednesday the 21st!  This was our first snow in I believe in 3 years!   Ashleigh measured 4 inches in our backyard.  The kids went outside several times each day. Because Elijah does not have boots his 2 pair of socks and shoes were soaked each time.  

Our FBI checks came today, you would be happy to know Kellar and I do not have a police record (Ashleigh was scared for a moment when she thought her daddy's said yes he was arrested).

Friday, January 23, 2009

Top picture we are eating lunch at 50's Prime Time Cafe at Disney's Hollywood Studios.
Elijah's first picture with a live character at our recent Disney trip (Dec. 4-10) this picture was taken on the 9th.  He had no desire until this day to have his picture taken.  We were at Tusker House in Animal Kingdom.


I am going to brag on my big girl, who by the way will let you know she is now 10.  She is in a  homeschool speech and debate club.  Basically at her age the kids are learning public speaking skills (kids 12 and up can be in the debate part their topic has to do with India and US relations).  My first public speaking class was in college and I dreaded it especially the persuasive speech part.  Well back to Ashleigh's speech class.  Their assignment on Jan. 15 was to prepare a 3-5 minute persuasive speech.  She was the least bit thrilled.  As a typical child she put it off until I nagged her enough this past Tuesday.  She had no idea what to speak about, so with mom's help she decides to persuade her friends to give their change to help orphans.  After the Steven Curtis Chapman concert last spring we have been saving our change in a bucket "Change for Orphans" check out  Ashleigh did an awesome job yesterday!  Not all the class was prepared with a speech.  The teacher I found out later had not even shown the video about persuasive speeches.  She told in her speech that she would be bringing her bucket for the next several weeks for any change they wish to give (the change goes to showhope not to us)  Last night she gave her speech to her daddy.  He was very impressed.  We may be using this speech later to help with our adoption (just changing the bucket part).

Please pray for our friends Todd and Gretchen (campus ministers in Illinois) who left today to bring hope their Ethiopian daughter.  They will meet her on Tuesday.
Also pray that we receive the rest of our documents soon so we can get our dossier completed!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Oh my it has been a long time

Okay, for those of you keeping (trying to keep) up to date on our adoption progress, my sincerest apologies.  How time really does fly.
Well on December 17, Gladney approved us to adopt from Ethiopia.  YEAH!  So now we are officially in the next phase (preparing our dossier).  This is the important documents that will go to Ethiopia.
Today Kellar and I will be going downtown to the police department to be fingerprinted.  Yes, you may be asking like I have (we were fingerprinted by United States Immigration) so why a new set of fingerprints by the FBI?  I still have no answer other than another step in the process of international adoption actually I believe domestic adoptions are fingerprinted at the local police dept.  Once this is complete it will be mailed to FBI to be processed.
We have also been working on some additional paperwork.  Every document included in the dossier needs to be authenticated by the Secretary of State from which the document originated.  For us this means sending stuff to Illinois, Kentucky, North Carolina, and Texas (our agency state as well as health insurance company location).  After this step is complete Gladney will place on on the waiting list for our son.  Then all the documents go to the US Dept. of State in DC and then to the Ethiopia Embassy in DC.  A courier will deliver from one building to the other and charge us $75.  Then our dossier will be on its way to Ethiopia!
My timeline to send things to the Secretary of State level is the first week in February.  This depends on if all paperwork is in our hands by then (from FBI and USCIS).

We will then have a wait time of 6 months before a referral.

While we are waiting we will be applying for some adoption grants and doing some other fundraising to hopefully cover $20,000 (yikes!) But we serve a BIG God.  He has called us to international adoption and He will provide the means to do it.  Please be in prayer for us and if God leads you to support us we will possibly apply for a matching grant where an agency will match what donations we receive.