Friday, May 31, 2013

Where We're At & What's Next

We received a donation this week from someone who included a note saying they had checked the blog and noticed where we are at in the process and wanted to help move it along.  This was very kind and generous and made me think that I needed to post an update on where we are at  now and what is coming up next.

Trying on Nellie's Shoes
So where we are at is waiting on paperwork and continuing to raise funds for the adoption, which seems to be a common state.  However, we are at a more advanced stage of both of these........
  • First, we have resubmitted Kim's fingerprints to the FBI in West Virginia so they can process a background check.  Lucas and Nate have already passed with flying colors, but Kim's fingerprints were not clear enough for the FBI to complete the task, so a new set was sent to them three weeks ago and we are just waiting for them to get to look at them again.  (Hurry up, stop spying, and HURRY UP FBI!! ~ Kim) On June 6th it will have been four weeks that they have had them and I will be free to call and ask them if the new prints are clear and try to get them to move the whole process along.  So - keep your fingers crossed.
  • Second, we  have submitted the first of two requests for a clearance to adopt from Homeland Security (the I800a, not to be confused with the I800).  This first clearance approves Nate to go to  Bulgaria (after Bulgaria says we're kosher and invites us to come on over) and meet the two kiddos and then come back to the United States to continue the paperwork train. Homeland Security has sent us the I797 document that is both openly hostile to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980 (don't invite them both to Thanksgiving dinner unless you want to see the fur fly) and lets us know that they are confirming that they have our application in case the email that told us that wasn't clear enough.  During the week of June 3 we should hear from Homeland Security to schedule a time to get fingerprinted (they get fancy-schmancy and call it "biometrics") separate from the one for the FBI.  So that continues to move forward.
Not Fingerprinted but Still Hiding from the FBI?
  • Third, our home study is completed and has been sent to our adoption agency so they can check it to make sure it is ok, put it together with other documents (Kim here; LOTS of other documents - just to be clear) we have been gathering, and voila - it is our dossier!!!!!!  Then it will go to Bulgaria for translation (might be there already - squeeeeellllllllll - Kim again), and along with these other two pieces will be what the Ministry of Justice in Bulgaria will be looking at before they officially invite us over.
  • Fourth, we need to pay a fee to the adoption agency of $8000 before
    the first trip.  The estimated cost of the trip with airfare and Nate living on Bulgarian feta and local produce is $2500.  We have $7000 cash on hand, so we are trying to raise another $3500.  We are taking donations for more eBay selling (click here to see what we have) and another tag sale that will happen in two weeks - if you are local and have something in good shape to donate to it then let us know, we'd be happy to take it. In the past the tag sales have raised $800-$1000 each so we're hoping we can do that (or even better).  Nate is also filling out grant applications as well.  
  • When Nate gets back from Bulgaria after the first trip, another $4000 fee will need to be paid to the adoption agency before the process can be moved along, so once the $3500 is raised, we'll turn our energy and attention to this $4000.
Stan "The Man" Musial Baseball Card Puzzle
So although it sounds like it is moving along slowly (and from where I sit it is moving slowly), we are making progress and are on a similar trajectory time-wise as we had expected when we first started off on this journey.

And the other thing we remember to do is REMEMBER THE TWO KIDS WE ARE ADOPTING.  We love them and think of what life will be like when they get here - how they will fit in at our favorite swimming pond, favorite walk, if they like asparagus, if they will snuggle the Tubstah or if he will scare the dickens out of them (Corgis are intimidating - in their delusions of grandeur anyway......).  This helps us remember that bringing these two kiddos into our family won't mean we have to raise money constantly and fill out mind-numbing paperwork, they're actually going to be in the family doing things with us here in......

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