Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Logged In

This will be a SHORT post, and on the surface, the topic seems relatively insignificant. However, those two little words in the title of this post have a profound meaning. Our dossier, all that paper that took months to complete and compile, have officially been logged into China's child welfare system! We have now begun the intense and stressful period know as the LOA(Letter of Acceptance) Wait that can vary from 45 or so days to (heaven forbid) 100+ days. Horrifyingly, we were in the latter category with Ethan. I am trying to tell myself that I am prepared for that eventuality -- but I'm not! Here's hoping and praying no matter how long until we receive that glorious piece of paper, I can maintain some semblance of sanity and calmness! Let the counting begin.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Rummage Sale, Brittany's Hope, and...DTC!!!

We have officially concluded our outdoor rummage sale but are continuing to sell items that are left on Sioux Falls Rummage Online (Facebook page) and Craiglist. We met and actually nominally exceeded the goal I had in mind! In that vein, we also found out today that we officially received a matching grant from Brittany's Hope. That means for every dollar we raise, up to $1500, we will receive equal funds from Brittany's Hope! We have a ways to go before we reach that amount, but it is certainly not insurmountable. We may have to be creative and find a few more items to sell (as we cannot contribute any money of our own to the grant per our signed agreement), but we will think of something. Even if we do not reach the full $1500, they will match whatever we do raise. We are eternally grateful for this organization's commitment to helping to bring children home.

Not only did we have a successful rummage sale, we also got the wonderful news that our dossier is enroute to China. Hopefully it will be in the hands of the CCCWA next week and logged in soon thereafter. Then we can start the LOA wait. It is such a huge relief to have all of that paperwork on its way -- out of my hands -- and to be one step closer to Carter. In the past, to celebrate this milestone, Troy and I have had Chinese food, shared a bottle of champagne, gone out to a nice restaurant. This time around, however, we were a little worn-out from our garage sale and having to chase around and worry about our "precious little guys" during said sale. So,

this year we share a Lucky Buddha (enlightened) Beer (no kidding, it says enlightened). That was pretty much it. Please know we are as equally excited for Carter's DTC as we were for Aiden's and Ethan's DTC day; we are simply out of gas right now. Maybe we'll do something special on Logged in Date (LID)!! If we can summon the energy.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Brittany's Hope Blessing and the Corrosponding Garage Sale

We have been informed we have likely been blessed with a gift of a grant from Brittany's Hope Foundation. The essence of the program and organization is below.

From Brittany's Hope Website:

"We believe in the fundamental right of all children to have the security and love of a family.

We resolve to facilitate adoptions of special needs, older and sibling children by providing financial grants for special waiting children; to actively seek out healthy and happy families who can offer love and support to special needs children; to raise public awareness of the need for healthy homes for special needs, older and sibling children and to raise public awareness of the unique joys of parenting a special child."

Here's how their program works:

The most important and sustainable part of the Seedling Gift Program is that we ask our recipient families to raise half of their total grant amount to help future families bring their child home.

This goal can be reached through tax deductible donations from family, friends, colleagues, neighbors or individuals from your local community.

This is where our garage sale comes in. We are not comfortable asking for donations, so June 12, 13 & 14 we will be having a garage sale and are praying that it is successful as whatever we make will be DOUBLED! We have had friends generously donate some awesome items: a treadmill and other exercise equipment, table and bar stools, brand new luggage, a pak-n-play, a new 6 pack mini-fridge for a vehicle, a desk, a 2 drawer filing cabinet, two 'chandeliers' (one brand new), a corner entertainment stand, and a couple of dressers to name a small portion of what was gifted to us. We now pray for good weather, a big turn out, and generous hearts since we are doing free will donations, except for the "big ticket items." We would sure appreciate any prayers and good wishes to the same effect: prayers for a successful fundraiser and prayers for this beautiful little guy.

On a related note, the last of our paperwork is in Washington, D.C. awaiting approval from the Chinese Embassy. As soon as we have their seal, those two items will be forwarded to our agency in Oregon and the entirety of our dossier will hopefully be China-bound on Friday, June 13. We will then officially be Dossier to China (DTC) and begin the interminable LOA (Letter of Acceptance) wait. Last time, if anybody would like to recollect which I would not, our wait exceeded ONE HUNDRED DAYS. Ugh. However, on the upside, I can with great relief say, we (let's face it, Troy contributes only what is absolutely mandatory -- haha!) I have officially completed my last dossier EVER! As much as I love my boys and know they are worth every pen stroke, every tear, every curse, every minute those dossiers took, I am SO over all that paperwork! So, YAY! A chapter closed and on to the next!