Wednesday, November 18, 2009

No New News...

Hello Again,

Well, just wanted to give an update...which isn't much.  Our dossier has been in Ethiopia for three weeks as of yesterday.  No real news.  We will have a phone training/conference call with our agency the 2nd week of December to go over referral and travel information - so we are prepared when the time comes. 

We are both keeping busy with work and school.  We will both complete graduate degrees mid-December, so we have plenty to do and keep our minds occupied while in this stage of "waiting."  There are lots of unknowns in international adoption, but if our particular case ends up falling into the "typical" category for our agency...we may receive our referrals in the next 3-5 months (since we have nearly 1 month down already). We could get referrals much earlier than that time frame...or later, but that's at least a rough idea of what we are expecting.

I guess that's it for now.  I should really get to my final project for my M.A., which is on coaching others through procrastination.  Hmmmm... as I sit here writing this post, procrastinating from finishing up my research ON procrastination.  Guess I picked a good topic...something that resonates with me! 

Anyhow, I hope everyone is doing well.  Have a great Thanksgiving if I don't get back on here and write anything further before then!

Oh yeah, almost forgot... I think I fixed the comments thing on this blog.  It wasn't working for a while, I apparently messed it up a while back when I changed to this new background and was fiddling with all the settings.  It should work now.   :-)


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Our Dossier is in Ethiopia!!

Yay! Our dossier arrived in Ethiopia today and was signed for at 7:59am by Tilahun!!


Sunday, October 25, 2009

We are awaiting our Referrals!!!

Sean and I are VERY excited to announce that we are now awaiting our referrals! We just got an email from our agency on Friday, 10/23, and they informed us that they just mailed our completed dossier to Ethiopia! They gave us the DHL tracking number so that we can track our dossier's trip and rest assured once it arrives at its final destination. We are so very thrilled to tell you that we are currently waiting to see who God blesses us with to increase our family. In case we haven't already mentioned, we are "requesting" a baby boy, age 0-18 months and a second child, age 0-3 1/2 years. Yes, you heard right! We are doubling our family! Sean may have already mentioned that, but it bears repeating. We will soon be welcoming two children into our family, and we could not be more excited. There is plenty to do to get ready, but we are counting down until we make the long and much-anticipated journey to eastern Africa! Thank you for your continued support and prayers! We are very grateful, and we will continue to keep you posted!!


Friday, October 9, 2009

Dossier Delivered!

Today we received a confirmation (via e-mail) from FedEx that our dossier has been delivered to our adoption agency! So, now we wait to see if we turned in everything and did it correctly...... Will keep y'all updated once we actually know something!

Have a good weekend everyone! We will be resting and trying to get over this cold/flu...or whatever it is we have had for about a week.


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Moving Right Along...

Happy Tuesday Everyone! Well, I suppose it'd be a lot happier (for most) if it were a Friday...but, whatever - just have a good stinkin' night and get on to reading the rest of the post already! ;-)

Just wanted to let anyone that is following this blog know that we received our last two documents (with State Authentication) in the mail today! This means, that as of this evening, our dossier is complete!  WooHoo!!

I spent a good portion of the evening psychotically pouring over the dossier requirements and our documents to make sure that everything was in order. I've checked, re-checked, verified, and then confirmed that everything is ready to go to the adoption agency. Yeah, I know - I'm anal... not really a newsflash for most of ya. I will be taking the completed dossier in to the local FedEx tomorrow during lunch. Yay! Hopefully, it will arrive to them safely (and quickly) and as they audit our file they will find everything done correctly. I really don't like do-overs. Having to do something (you've already put quite a bit of effort into) over is making more than one trip with your grocery bags from the car!! How USELESS is that? Just suck it up, put 20 bags on each arm, walk fast, and get it over with!! The 2 minutes of pain is worth it...and the little marks on your arms/wrists where the bag dug into you and cut off your circulation will quickly go away! I'm just saying...

Anyhow, if everything goes as planned, our dossier will arrive at our agency on Friday morning. This is good news... the paperchase is coming to a close!

Now, before we received these last few documents in the mail we had to have my aunt come over and notarize the last bit of documents (this time last week). Thanks aunt Glee for being a notary public and being willing to travel all over creation to get a zillion documents taken care of -- a blessing indeed! Anyways...we took some pictures of us signing our last bit of paperwork.

Here is one of them:

That's it for now! Have a good one....


Friday, September 25, 2009


Another quick update!!

Jaime and I got back from the fair last night and got the mail on the way in. To our surprise we had received something from the Department of Homeland Security. It was the I171H approval!! We were not anticipating receiving that for another couple of weeks or so... So, we are thrilled that it came only 9 business days after I filed our home study report at the Los Angeles USCIS office.

Anyhow, now I have to scramble up some paperwork real quick and have it notarized and send in some documents to Sacramento. By the end of next week we should be sending our dossier off to our agency in Oregon....

That's it for now... oh yeah, yes - we did have fun at the L.A. County Fair! Just looked at the exhibit halls and did some shopping. We don't care about the games, rides, concerts, food and all that - so we were just there a few hours which was plenty!


Thursday, September 24, 2009

Paperwork turned in to USCIS

Hello All,

Just wanted to give a quick update. First of all, for those of you that don't already know, Jaime and I have changed our request to two children. Besides a boy 0-18months old we will also be adopting a child 0-4yrs of age (we are not specifying gender... so, we will see what God has in mind!!). We are excited that in the coming months we will be doubling our family!! Okay, a little nervous too... it will be an adjustment for sure, but we will figure it out as we go. That's pretty typical with parenting anyhow... right? Yeah, no need to respond.... I know I'm right, and humble too - apparently! J/K.

Anyhow, as for an update on where we are in the process: as of tomorrow (Friday Sept 25th) it will have been 2 weeks since we drove our home study report in to the immigration office in Los Angeles and turned it in. The approval they give (called an I171H, which clears us to bring two children into the U.S.) should arrive in a couple weeks or so. This document is the last item we need to complete our dossier. So, as soon as it gets in I will be sending (a copy of) it to be state certified. Once that gets back we will send the whole packet to our adoption agency. After they review it and have a couple documents certified in Washington DC.... .THEN our dossier will be sent to Ethiopia. We are hoping that our dossier (reminder: a dossier is just a fancy name for "exhaustive mound of paperwork.") will arrive in Ethiopia by the end of October. At that point we will be officially "waiting" for the referral of our children.

That's it for now! Hope all is well with everyone! Have a great weekend and behave yourselves...


Friday, August 28, 2009

Little Ethiopia in Los Angeles

Hello again, it has been too long since we last blogged...sorry about that!

Anyhow, in July we had the opportunity to go to Little Ethiopia in Los Angeles with a new friend of ours (who works at the same university as Jaime and I). Having lived in Ethiopia for several years, our friend was more than familiar with the food we would be partaking of, as well as the restaurants and shops in the area we were visiting. She was great in helping us determine what to order and how to go about eating a traditional Ethiopian meal. Having her along was a blessing indeed!! (You may notice that I have used "friend" and "her" with no name etc... This is only because I have not, as of yet, asked permission to post her name and/or picture on the internet. I know that if someone posted my picture or anything about me online without my permission - I would promptly, and without hesitation, hunt them down and slap them upside the head....with great force! So, I will go ahead and NOT do unto others that which I would not have them do unto me! Can I hear an Amen! )

Anyways, the food was great. Here is a picture of it before we dug into it!!

Here is a picture of Jaime and I pretending to be eating (but, obviously posing....). Whatever....

And finally, this is how appetizing it looks after you've finished. Mmmmmmmm...... want some?

I would go into detail about Ethiopian food, how it's prepared, and how you go about eating it etc... Except, ....yeah... I don't wanna. If you are truly that interested, we can have a conversation...OR you can take responsibility for your own learning and go google it. You'll find plenty of information AND have the joy and satisfaction of gaining the knowledge and insight on your own. Yay YOU!

Wow, I can tell by my sarcasm that I am too tired and cranky to do this anymore - so I am going to stop for now! It's not the writing that's so's just the fact that this is the first time I have tried to do a blog post with pictures embedded within it. Since I am not an 8 year old, it takes me a bit of time to figure it out and, quite frankly, it frustrates the daylights out of me. I have the attention span of a laboratory rat, so going to the online blog tutorials and reading instructions sounds about as desirable as repeatedly hitting myself in the face with a bat...with spikes in it... then cleansing the wounds with lemon juice and a salt scrub.
That's it for now....


Saturday, July 11, 2009

Our Baby Boy

As Sean said, we are adopting a baby boy from Ethiopia! We are very excited!! I cannot wait to be done with all of the paperwork. We are just about done completing the numerous documents that comprise the dossier. We are just waiting for our social worker to finish up the home study report. There is a light at the end of the tunnel!

We have been buying clothes and stuffed animals among other items in preparation for the day when we will bring our son home. His room isn't quite ready, but his daddy is working on that. Sean has been reading many books on international adoption and Ethiopia specifically so he might be a little more prepared than I will be. I am in summer school and applying to a PhD program (to start in the fall of 2010) so I regret to admit that I have not read many of the books that Sean is reading. However, I have been actively praying in preparation for our little guy to come join our family.

It has been so wonderful to have the support and love of our extended families. Sean's parents and my parents as well as our siblings have been so great during this process. We love you all!


Saturday, July 4, 2009

We're Adopting!!!

Hello Everyone! Well, here it is... the beginning of Sean & Jaime's Blog. I know you're all SO excited. Just kidding. Anyhow, a handful of you may know already... but, for those of you that don't... Jaime and I are in the process of adopting from Ethiopia!!

Here's a quick timeline/rundown for those of you that knew nothing of this until now:

1. Even before we got married Jaime and I knew that we wanted to grow our family through adoption. The only thing that hadn't been confirmed was when and from where.

2. At the end of 2008, after much research and prayer, we felt like God was telling us that our child was in Ethiopia.

3. In December 2008 we sent in our application to an agency. By February 2009 we had signed on with them and began our dossier (huge packet of paperwork). International adoption is quite a long and involved process... but we have finished quite a bit of the paperwork and hope to have our dossier complete soon. Once it is complete we will send it to our agency who will have it sent to Ethiopia. At that point we will begin our wait for a referral. Once we have and accept the referral of a particular child we will have to wait to get a court date, pass court, and then shortly after court passage we will travel to Ethiopia to pick up our son (oh yeah, we are requesting a 0-18 month old boy).

That's it for now. We will give more info and updates throughout the remainder of the process.

Thanks for reading... and God bless!! Oh yeah, it is not too soon to start praying for our little one, that the remainder of the process will go smoothly, AND that we find favor with: the orphanage from which our child is located, the Ethiopian government, US immigration, and the judge who will eventually hear our case.