New Years News!
Happy New Year, everyone! There’s been a lot of stuff going on lately with our adoption, so I thought we’d start off the new year with an adoption update!
First of all, we’ve had quite a bit of administrative stuff happening recently with our paperwork. We had completed all the forms, reports, the home study, etc. and each page had been notarized. Then we had to get each document county certified (which Alabama is like one of only 3 states that require this step which is sssuuuuuuuper frustrating). County certification requires us to go to each county where a piece of paper was notarized and have them certify that the notary really is a notary in that county. Excessive, right? Well that took forever cuz we had certifications in like 7 counties. THEN we have to get every page STATE certified, which required me to take all the documents to Montgomery to get the Secretary of States office to certify that the county levels did what they were supposed to do. And we also had a few documents from Illinois and Colorado, so we had to mail those off to be state certified there. So many steps!
Blake and I also had to go to US Citizenship and Immigration Services to file our I800A which is an “application for determination of suitability to adopt a child from a convention country.” We were fingerprinted (for the 3rd time), and then a few weeks later we received our approval in the mail! That means the US government approves us to adopt a child!
So after all that paperwork was done, county certified, and state certified, and our I-800A was approved, all that was left was to raise enough money to submit our dossier (packet of paperwork)!!
In the weeks leading up to Christmas, we sold Christmas ornaments as a fundraiser, and it was a HUGE success! We made almost $3000! That’s way more than we were expecting, and we’re so excited about the great result! So BIG THANKS to everyone who purchased an ornament!
And what’s even more exciting is that just a couple days before Christmas we received our first grant award!! Hooray!! We were awarded $5000 for our adoption, and we’re so pumped! We still have 4 grants that we’ve applied for that are currently pending, and we should hear back from them by the end of January, or definitely by the end of February. We also have more grants that we will be applying for as we go, so we’re really hoping to be awarded some more grants in the coming months!
With the $5000 grant, the $3000 from ornaments, some savings, some Christmas money, and also some more donations from you generous folks, we now have all the fees needed to submit our dossier! Praise God! Just this afternoon I got all our paperwork together and took it to the post office! I’ve never been more nervous to mail something. I hope we included everything we were supposed to, I hope we didn’t miss any signatures, I hope we got all the proper certifications, and I hope it doesn’t get lost in the mail! Countless hours went into this packet of paperwork. And it’s a lot of papers…
Now, we officially exit the paperwork phase and enter the waiting phase. This is a HUGE step! We are hoping that within 6ish months of submitting our dossier, we will be matched with a child. That timeline is pretty ambiguous since we are in a pilot program and there is a lot of political unrest in Burundi right now, but that’s the best guess at the moment.
We’ll keep you posted with our progress! Thank you so much for praying for us and our future child.