Thursday, September 22, 2011


Nothing in the adoption world seems to move quickly, and we have understood that very well these last two weeks!  We have all of our paperwork submitted and China has received everything they need to complete our transfer.  We spoke to our new agency again today, and they said that their China contact is working on the transfer and hopes to have it completed by the end of next week, if not (hopefully) sooner!  Next Friday is just her goal.  The Letter of Intent paperwork is also in China, so hopefully, it will be processed quickly.  It may still be a couple of weeks until we have that "official" provisional acceptance letter, but at least we are progressing in the right direction!  Today I also received additional photos from an American doctor who visited with him in July.  I will also be receiving an updated medical report from her as soon as she completes it (hopefully by the weekend).  In one of the pictures, he is crying........but she told me that he was just "very unhappy that he had to be still long enough for them to complete the medical exam."  He looks great and is happily playing in most of the photos.  We can also see the cleft repair a bit better in these pictures, and we are still impressed with how good it looks.  It appears that some dental work is in his future, but that is something we can handle and fully expected.  What kid doesn't need dental work these days? :-)

I can't wait until we can share the pictures online!  I'm very happy to share them in person, though! :-)

Our agency case worker indicated that she thought we would likely travel around March or April, although it could be sooner.  Timelines are unpredictable in China, at best!

Please continue to keep us, the process and, most importantly, this little guy in your prayers.  This is a gruelling process and we have been a little exhausted from the emotions of everything over the last two weeks.  We are thankful, and feel blessed to have made it to this point!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Family Pics for LOI (Letter of Intent)

My photographer friend, Dana Basham, took these photos with our camera today for us so that we could send the JPEG files to our new agency.  They will need these files to attach to our Letter of Intent, or LOI, this week (indicating that we want to adopt this specific little boy).  She kept telling Alexis to smile because she would have a baby brother.....she produced some adorable little smiles as a result!

Friday, September 16, 2011


Whew.....the last week has been such an emotional and exciting week!  I'm not sure we have still fully wrapped our heads around everything.  We are excited to share that we have accepted a referral for an ADORABLE little boy with a repaired cleft lip and palate.  His repair was completed at 5 months of age, and our pediatrician indicated that his repair was "beautifully" done.  She commented that his file is the best case scenario she could imagine for a child in the "special needs program."  In fact, based on the information we have, she doesn't consider him "special needs" at all!  His development is right on target - if not ahead in some areas!  He is around 22 months at this time.

Someone shared his agency's link with me, and asked if I had heard of their special program that receives referrals of children from one specific orphanage (not the shared list).  I had not, so I checked it out, but was reluctant, because his file couldn't be transferred to our agency.  I asked if we could be matched to his file before we switched, but the new agency didn't think that was possible.  They thought we'd likely have to transfer first, then try to be matched to his file.  This wasn't very appealing at the time, because we worried his file would be locked to a different family in the process.  We truly have been very pleased with our agency and loved working with a smaller, Kentucky-based organization.  His little face was stuck in my mind, though, and we decided to wait for about a week and see what happened...

On Tuesday, the new agency called us and said that they had found out that we could, in fact, be matched to his file and THEN transferred.  So, we would be able to secure his file just for us!  We asked to see his file and reviewed it with our pediatrician that day.  After seeing his sweet face, and hearing such positive news from the doctor, we knew that we had to move forward!

We have been swamped - once again - with paperwork since then.  We completed a new (very lengthy) application for the new agency, had to write an official withdrawal letter to our current agency, called the US Immigration office to inquire about revising our home study (it gives us permission to adopt a girl, so we have to revise it to adopt a boy), and started working on the 12 documents we need to gather in order to submit his "letter of intent" (official request to China to be his family).  Our old agency has now released us, and the new agency has accepted us!  Everything is ready for them to send to China for our transfer.  Once it is complete, we will submit the LOI (letter of intent) and wait for provisional approval (PA).  We are **hoping** this will all happen by our Fall Break.  The transfer can take anywhere from a few to several days.  The PA is usually issued within two weeks of the LOI submission.  Either way, we are just thrilled and thankful to be blessed with this new addition to our family.

Even though he isn't "officially" ours yet, we truly feel that the events that transpired over the last two weeks were "meant to be."  We were really questioning ourselves as August passed without a match....and then our agency thought they were going to be able to lock a released file over Labor Day, and that was a disappointment.  Our director indicated that she didn't know why our case was taking so long, but she knew God had a plan for us.  Today one of the directors from our new agency commented that they "didn't know why this little boy's file had sat without interest for 3 months."  I think we know why!

I'm not allowed to share pictures, details about his province or any other specifics until we receive the PA.  When we do, I will share!  If you see us in person, we can show you pictures that we have in hand, just not electronically.

We want to thank everyone for your support, encouragement and prayers thus far in this journey.  We have been amazed at how many people are interested in our experience and it really contributed to our hope when we were disappointed over the last several months.  We know that this little guy will be welcomed and loved by many, many wonderful people in our lives!