Friday, October 30, 2009

A lesson in apostillizing

We received our first apostilled documents this week (buy stock in FedEx...we are doing as much business with them as a corporate office...our Fed Ex delivery man is very nice and gives Scooter treats.) This process was something new to us, but we learned very quickly as this is a necessity for international adoption. Our birth certificates and marriage licenses had to be sent back to the state they were issued from to be apostilled. After a document become apostilled it becomes an official international document. The secretary of state notarizes the original notary. New york has an extra step and was little confusing to figure but after reading other blogs we figured it out. Let us know if you have any questions about apostillizing documents in New York, we would be happy to help.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

First Homestudy Visit Complete!

We had our first homestudy visit today. Our social worker came to our home to interview us. She asked a few questions that made Vito get gooshy but overall it was a good meeting. I knew we didn't have to dust the base boards for this meeting but better safe than sorry...the house was spotless, and the pumpkin pie scented candle was burning. Scooter was a bit rambunctious when she arrived but he slept through the remainder of the meeting. The questionaires that we were asked to fill out asked many questions about our childhoods, our relationship, and how we will raise a child. We sat side by side on our laptops (Ramie is a MAC, Vito is a PC) for hours answering the questions with all of our hearts. We sat on our front porch rockers at 11:00 pm on a beautiful night and read our answers to each other. What started out as a long task ended as a soul searching lesson that brought us closer together.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Adoption Education

Part of our approval is based on adoption education classes. Fortunately, we can do them online, at our own pace, and sit outside with our laptops enjoying the beautiful fall colors in our backyard (love technology!) So far we have completed 5 of them with a total of 11 classes to complete. We have to take a test at the end of each class (yes we have passed them all so far.) Here is an example of some of the classes we will be taking: Attachment and bonding, culture and identity, behavioral and mental disorders, effects of institutionalization, fetal alcohol syndrome, malnutrition, prenatal exposure to drugs and alcohol and travel and transition. If this sounds a little overwhelming and kind of is. I guess they just want you to be prepared for the worst case scenario. The great news is that most kids are healthy and happy, and while they may need a little extra help to deal with some of the above issues-it is better for us to be equipped to help them. And really what kid doesn't need a little extra help and love now and then!

The Paper Chase Begins

We received a letter from the agency with a list of papers to collect. Some of the papers we have started to gather: Vito (Mr. Excel Spreadsheet) has put together a color coded spreadsheet with 51 line items and timeline.

Birth certificates
Marriage certificate
Letters of reference
Clearance from the FBI (fingerprints)
Financial statements and Tax Returns
Medical Histories
Letters from our employer
25+ questions for our homestudy
Will's....who will get Scooter :(
Proof of insurance
Proof child will have health insurance
Warranty of deed
Let the games begin!!

Taking the plunge

After a lot of research, thought and prayer we finally decided on an agency and country. These two decisions took us a very long time, but now we are finally ready to get the ball rolling. We had to fill out 2 applications-1 for the homestudy and one for the agency. After being approved we were sent the contracts to sign. The highlight of this part was sitting with a friend from work while she notarized our signature 45 times. Thanks Martha Jean for spending an hour after work on a Friday afternoon!

The beginning of our biggest adventure yet

For those of you who know us, you know we love a good adventure. Well here it is.....we are going to adopt a child from Poland. We officially started the process right before our 5th anniversary. We know this is going to be an adventure with both ups and downs, but we are both up for the challenge. While researching adoption, we found other couples blogs very helpful so we decided to make our own it helps with everyone asking minutes after we tell them...when are you going to bring home a child?? So whether you are a loved one who is following our journey or a couple who is thinking about adoption, we hope you enjoy our blog and thanks for joining our adventure with us.

Who's Visiting