Oh boy, here I am doing something I never had any desire to do...start a blog. But here I am, entering an amazing journey that I always hoped for but never knew, until recently, if it was truly in God's plan for us. Years ago, God placed the idea of adoption on my heart and I mentioned it to Erik and, amazing man that he is, he was all for it. We both were, as a maybe thing in the future. We have since been blessed with our beautiful children, Ella and Ethan. Around the end of the summer, the idea of adopting a child really started to weigh on my mind. Being the type A person that I am, I began to research. Where? How long would it take? How much would it cost? What are the requirements? Is this really possible? I asked Erik his thoughts and he really wanted to do it. So we took some time to think about this and pray and we knew that this was what we wanted to do. After a lot of researching, we decided to adopt a litte girl from China. Ethan was only about 15 months old at the time, so we thought, maybe we should wait until he turns 2...? We prayed some more. After all, God knows when our daughter in China will be ready for us. After a lot of prayer, we just knew He was saying, nope, now is the time. So on October 1st, we applied to Holt International. We were quickly accepted into the China program and our journey began.
Now, here it is December and we've made some great progress. On Friday, after over a month of getting all the paperwork ready for our home study, we had our first home study visit and then yesterday, we had our second home visit. As scary as a home study sounds, it went great. Yes, it's a little intrusive but understandably so. After all, they're trying to fit a child with the right family. What could be more important? So the homestudy is a big deal. Now, we're just waiting on our social worker to get it all put together and then she will send it to Holt and once they approve it, we will send it to USCIS (Immigration) with our I-800A application to get approval to adopt a child from another country. It takes 2-3 months for them to process this so it's a long wait. While we're waiting on that, we'll be finishing up our dossier, which is a whole lot of paperwork that China requires for adoption. When that is done and we get the approval from USCIS, we'll include that in our dossier, along with our home study and send it to Holt who will make sure everything is done right and then they will send it to China. Once our dossier is logged in, we can officially receive a referral for a child. Yeah, it's confusing and a lot of work but it'll all be worth it when we receive the referral for our daughter!