Sunday, July 31, 2005

We got it....We got it....the I-171H!!!!!

So....I headed out to get the mail as any other day. No big brown envelope, but a little white one containing the much sought after I-171H. YAY!!!!!! All we need to do is make a copy of it, and get it together with the rest of our adoption paperwork and take it to Lansing to get sealed!! I'd like to head to Lansing tomorrow, then get those documents off to Chicago to be authenticated. What's scary is that our address was printed on another couple's I-171H form. Yikes! What exactly is Homeland Security? :-)

I did some shopping to celebrate the arrival of our last form. I got Julia 2 new dress from Wal-mart. They were only $3.oo a piece so I couldn't pass that up. I also started to stock up on diapers, pull-ups, disposable bibs and wash clothes. It's super hard not to just buy everything! Auntie Cheryl, don't get any ideas!! :-)

Ok, I need to get in the shower. See ya!

Monday, July 25, 2005

We got the home study and the Packmates, What a day...What a day!!

So the most exciting news, is that we GOT OUR HOME STUDY!! Yes, ladies and arrived. Well, it didn't arrive as much as we (Cameron and I) went to Grand Rapids to retrieve it. We met with Michelle this morning to go over our documents. There are some changes that need to be made. 3 of our documents don't have the correct wording on them and so that needed to be worked on. I sent all the paperwork needed to generate our I-171H. That lovely piece of paper states that we are OK'ed to adopt an orphan by the US government. Imagine that, the gub'ment let us have 2 biological kids but we still have to be checked out. I know why, just seems redundant. I finally feel like we are working on something again. The sitting around waiting is (was) driving me nuts. Waiting for travel approval will suck too, but I just want to be done with the freakin dossier and try to working getting the kids ready for school.

In other adoption news, we received our packmates. What are packmates you ask? The are like large Zip-Loc bags that you put clothes in and roll all the air out, and then they pack you clothes flat in your suitcase. I'm still thinking that we want to try to take most of our stuff in carry-ons. I need to get with Liz and Brion and see what they've been thinking about. I know they talked about taking their older kids. Liz and Brion are the other family who are adopting a little boy from the same orphanage as Julia. I don't know if they've chosen a American name for their son.

Ok...I need to take a little break. I'm super tired. Talk to you later!! :-)

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Sick husband and STILL NO HOMESTUDY

Well, I can honestly say that not a whole lot has happened with the adoption since the last time that I wrote. Actually, nothing has happened! I'm still waiting on the homestudy, I was hoping to get that today from Michelle, but apparently that wasn't in the cards. Wayne has been very sick for nearly a week. We think that he might have a gallstone. What? A gallstone? But Wayne doesn't have a gallbladder! Oh lord, what's next? He needed to get some more blood work done today to see what's going on. Hopefully, tomorrow will bring better news about what's going on.

With Wayne being sick tonight, I missed the waiting families meeting. I was truly bummed. Actually, I'm bummed that Wayne doesn't see why those meetings are important. He's too self absorbed with work to know the true anguish of the waiting. I suppose it's not his fault, but it still drives me nuts none the less.

I will be calling Michelle tomorrow to see if our homestudy is complete. I want to get our I-717H!!! At this point, I just want to hear word that the homestudy is remotely close. Ughhh...

Anyway, enough of my gripes. The kids are at Grams and Pops' tonight for a sleepover. Anna was really excited. Cam was too I think. :-) I'm off....G'Night!

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Swim Lessons/New kiddos on AAI

Nothing new really to post about today. Kids started swim lessons yesterday. Anna has Amy Way again (wooohoo!). Anna loves Amy, Amy loves having Anna in her group. Speaking of Level 1 group...Anna is the only one. Yep! One on one swim lessons. Anna gets Amy to herself for an hour. :-) Cameron is in Level 3. He has Matthew Sutton and some other girl for his instructors. Cam knows Matthew from church and from the 2 prior years of swimming. Cam is a little bummed that Nathaniel isn't around this year. Nathaniel is Matthew's brother (they both are Mik's sons) and one of the most fun instructors. Both the kids love the program at West Shore and for $40 a kid, it's a good deal. To keep it more in the family, Matthew and Nathaniel's mom, Polly is the director of the program. Sometimes Rosanna and David help out too. The entire Sutton family, with the exception of Mik. :-)

I noticed yesterday that AAI has new kids listed on their website. There is one little girl Jing Jing that I would love to have as well. She has some ear deformity. I think Julia's is a little more critical, but Jing Jing is a cutie. Cam is still asking for a brother, I think it's something that Wayne is giving more thought about. He would love another son and much as I would. There are more and more boys from China going up for adoption and I think as smooth (well, at times) as all this has gone, I'm up for another paperchase. Why not? Anna is getting a sister, Cam needs a brother. :-) Ok, I need to get the kids ready for swim lessons! Later!!

Monday, July 11, 2005

How Mr. Bill saved my day/The finding Ad

Sooo...after the breakdown on Tuesday, I got regrouped and went over all our info that we need to get going on. We need to get our pictures together, we needed to get our police letters notarized, we are still waiting for wanes letter to get back from the Chinese consulate in Houston. This brings us to how Mr. Bill from the ISD saved my day.

As of Thursday morning I still hadn't heard from AAI about our reference letter from Beth. Feeling that I no longer could wait, I stopped at the ISD to see if I could scrounge up someone to write a letter on Wayne and I's behalf. I HIT THE JACKPOT!!!!! Mr. Bill was in his office and volunteered his services as well as his computer to write the letter at that same moment!!! So, we sat down with the requirements that MaryBeth had told me and we wrote (I typed) the letter. YAY!!! We got the letter done, he signed it and I was off to meet with my new love--The Fed-Ex man!! Lucky for me Cal-Chlor has a Fed-Ex account and there's a drop at the Shell station just a few blocks away. PHEW!!!! MaryBeth told me she would hold our home study hostage till she got that letter. I just hope it includes all that she needed. That was a HUGE weight off my shoulders. I wanted to get our info to officer Teske before she headed out on vacation, but it's not gonna happen. :-( Bummer, but I'm still hoping to be DTC (dossier to China) before the end of July, but I think that's just a bit to hopeful.

On Wednesday we received Julia's (aka Yin) finding ad. What's a finding ad you ask? In China, when children are abandoned they place "ads" in the local papers. Those ads consist of small grainy pictures, what little info they know about the child (ie: birthdate, what date the were found, what clothes they were wearing, the exact location of where they were left and any physical deformities). Some ads are just text, no picture. We are extremely lucky that her ad is a picture one. As luck would have it, Liz and Brion's son is 2 ads below Julia. I sent a scan of the ad to them. So what did Julia's ad say exactly? Here's what we got:

Ad #30: Name now: Lu Yin Gui, A girl Birthdate: 10/14/2003 (estimated) Finding date: 11/22/2003 Found abandoned at #2 Huarongshan, Xianan district, Xianning City (gate of the district orphanage) She was wearing a yellow sweater and white cotton pants with yellow flowers and had a red cap. She has no right ear.

This is similar info to what we got from AAI. I knew that it was her when they mentioned her clothes. Those match exactly to what AAI said. Wayne and I would love to have that outfit. I doubt I will get it, but it's always worth asking for. We feel as though this ad is as close a birth announcement that we will get for her. No matter I guess, we love her already. The kids are over the top about her. Here's a picture of her ad.

I also went to the summer Pentwater Art Fair. I purchased 2 of Todd and Brad Reed's books to take to China. Go look for the book titled: Lake Michigan: Point to Point. I bought one for Director Lu and one for Julia's foster mom.

Ok, I need to go. G'Night!! :-)

Tuesday, July 5, 2005

My first breakdown and the power of ice cream and cookie dough

For those of you that know me, I am the emotional one. I tend to cry easy over silly things and not so silly things. Today I had my first major breakdown over the adoption stuff. MaryBeth called to say that she still doesn't have the letter from Beth for the educator side of the homestudy. This really bothers me. We need to have the homestudy ready so we can get those documents to USCIS and to finalize the dossier. I hate, hate, hate, hate having to depend on people to help me. From what I've read in my attatchment books, that could be a sign that adults let me down when I was a child. Interesting to say the least.... I'm finding that some of documents need to get notorized before they get sent to State. Sooooo...this leads me to the breakdown once Wayne got home. I just had to have a nice cry, get it all out. I feel somewhat better, not really a whole lot though. I had planned on a nice dinner, but now all I want is greasy, fattening comfort foods. I did have a small smidge of cookie dough, however it's healing power wasn't as effective as I had hoped. I plan on hitting Dairy Queen to pile up on little snacks for after the comforting dinner. :-)

Anyways, no need to worry. I will be fine, just feeling a bit overwhelmed by the control issues. I'm sure tomorrow will be a much brighter, happier day. Thank goodness that Julia doesn't know that her momma is a certified nut. :-) G'Night

Happy 4th of July!!

YAY!! It's July 4th. I'm sure that means nothing to Julia while she waits for us in China. :-) We did have a great time with all our families this weekend. It started out with us having my parents, grandparents, and sister over for dinner. Nothing that special, just hot dogs and brats. I think the kids liked having Granny and Poppa over as well as Grandma Denise and Grandpa Tom.

Saturday, we went to Tustin to the Stewart family get together. We had a great time talking to Aunt Susan and Aunt Wendy.

Sunday, I worked from 7-3 at the hotel and then we went to my parents for Theresa's birthday party. Aunt Susan and Uncle Brian came over for that party.

Today, we had the traditional Wagner family breakfast at Peach's house. Man, were there tons of people there today. Tyler came up while Theresa was at work. We did manage to make it to the parade (actually, the rain held off long enough for the parade to be held). It rained and rained and rained, ALL FREAKIN DAY!!! BLAHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!! Kids had a great time with all their cousins. Anna loves being with Sydney and Madison. Cam loves being with Mackenzie, Adam, Mitchell, and Max. I'm sure that Julia will fit right in with all of the kids. Christmas should be a blast. :-)

Ok, I'm super tired. I will write more tomorrow. G'Night!!

Friday, July 1, 2005

We want to buy shares in Fed-Ex

I'm getting ready to send Wayne's employer letter to the Chinese consulate in Houston. YAY! Yet another piece of the puzzle that needs to be complete before we can bring Julia home. So, we need to get to the bank and get a money order for $25.00 for the processing and paperwork that goes with it. This letter was gone from Lousiana to Michigan, back to Louisiana, now to Houston, it will come back to Michigan, then on to China once this is all said and done. Hard to believe it will still be in one piece by that time. :-)

We are taking Anna to the doctor today. She has a lump under her right breast. I'm hoping that it's nothing, maybe a fatty tumor at worst case. I'm sure it's nothing, but we still need to know. I will keep you up on what's going on with that. Alrighty, I'm off. Later!!