Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Brown Envelope

I forgot to post that we received the "brown envelope" about 2 weeks ago. One more step in the process. I've seen people post that they were happy to get it because then they know their documents are safe and sound in China. Well, not exactly. Remember this has nothing to do with the China side of things, with your dossier. It is from the US government in Guangzhou, indicating they have received your approval from the USCIS to adopt and are ready to process your child's visa when you get there. One of the requirements for the visa is the child's medical exam in China. The clinic is pure chaos, and on the wall is a sign that says "Quiet Please" or something like that. We got a kick out of that.

This pic has nothing to do with our adoption :-) but I wanted to post a picture of my awesome Westie, Chester. He turned 5 last week. We got him when he was 8 weeks old and only 2.3 pounds.

Have a great day!

Thursday, November 24, 2005


Thanks everyone for your compliments about Lindsey. She really is quite beautiful if I do say so myself. :-)

She had a great time at the parade (we all did!). It was in the 20's but I wasn't cold at all except for my toes a little bit. Lindsey was adorable in her pink coat, pink snowpants, pink hat, pink mittens, and pink boots! :-) I wish I would have taken a picture but we had to rush out the door and when we got home we just wanted to get all those layers off! We brought her stroller and a blanket and my sisters came with their kids and blankets. So Lindsey first watched the parade on her daddy's shoulders and then we piled all the blankets on top of her stroller and she sat on top of them like a queen!

Yesterday morning we woke up to this:

It's almost all melted now though. Never fear, we WILL get more! :-)

HAPPY THANKSGIVING! Next year we will have one more little one at the table. I'm very thankful.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Lindsey - Now

Here are 2 current pictures of Lindsey. The top one was taken about a month ago and the bottom one was taken late this summer. She's grown so much! We're going to our city's annual Christmas Parade tonight, brrr! We went last year and she just sat in her stroller and watched intently. I wonder what she'll do this year.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Lindsey - Then

(Since there's not much to report on Adoption #2 right now other than waiting, waiting, and more waiting, I might start posting more about Adoption #1 for awhile.)

This is Lindsey on Gotcha Day (5/31/04). She was so serious like this for the first 3 or 4 days we had her. Now she is all smiles and a whirlwind of activity. She can be a real challenge (she's 2!) but a huge blessing also. I can't wait until her sister Allison comes home.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Ladybugs Part 2

There's a dead and dismembered ladybug in front of our fireplace. Now what does THAT mean? ROFL Hey if you're going to get all giddy when you see a live ladybug thinking that means good things for the adoption process, then you can't say the dead ones are meaningless!

Saturday, November 12, 2005

One month down, ??? to go!!!

We've been logged in for one month today! After how disappointed I was to get an October LID, the first month went pretty fast. I know the rest of the wait will go fairly fast too. I am determined to enjoy the journey and not get caught up in the ups and downs of the process (well not TOO much anyway!).

That said I can't help but be a little disappointed that the wait times have gone up several months. When we started adoption #2 the wait from LID to referral was about 6 months, then it went to 6-7 months, then most recently we got an email from our agency that the estimated wait is now 8-9 months. The weekly update on their website (http://america-world.org/weeklyupdate/) now says 9-10 months! If it takes 9 months or more our homestudy will expire and we will need an update which means more $$$ to the agency and $75 to the State of Wisconsin. As if money isn't tight enough. Sigh. However I know anything can happen and things can speed up and GOD IS IN CONTROL AND WILL PROVIDE!

AWAA along with many other agencies got referrals on Thursday, but only for 2 weeks worth of dossiers (LID 3/17 and 3/30). For the most part since I've been a part of the Chinese adoption world (about 2 1/2 years) they've sent at least a month's worth at a time.

I watched another Chinese movie tonight - Yellow Earth. I didn't really get it. It wasn't as good as Beijing Bicycle.

We're still waiting for the infamous "brown envelope". This comes from the US consulate in Guangzhou, China. When they receive our approval from USCIS here in Milwaukee, they send out a brown envelope with some forms (they don't need to be filled out until we get to China) and a map of Guanzhou. Our case number is also on there. It's not a big deal if you don't get one. But it does show that they received our file and are waiting for us to come next year so if we don't get it we just have to let AWAA know so they can make sure our file was received. The forms can be obtained in China or from our agency. Last time we got it about 3 months after our I-171H was issued so that won't be until the end of this month this time. Friends of ours who received their I-171H 2 weeks before we did just got their brown envelope today. It's fun to get something mailed from China!

Have a great weekend!

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Beijing Bicycle

I watched a Chinese movie tonight - Beijing Bicycle. It was pretty good! Interesting, brought back a lot of memories of China, sort of a strange ending. But I guess there are some political/class messages to it that of course I missed. I've never watched a movie with subtitles before. So that was fun. I'd like to try to watch a few more while we wait (and wait, and wait, and wait....)

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Ladybug Craze

I have a confession to make. I don't really like the "ladybug craze" associated with China adoption. I guess at one time someone on this big adoption email list I belong to (APC) saw a ladybug while waiting for referrals and shortly after that referrals started coming in and ever since then the ladybug has been a "sign" that good things are happening in the adoption process. SOMETHING like that! I'm sure I don't have that exactly right or maybe that's completely wrong, but nevertheless people go crazy over every ladybug sighting and post their news "I saw a ladybug today! Referrals must be coming!" and everyone goes ga ga.

Please no offense to those of you who get into that! But I just don't. It's starting to get a little old. Referrals come when they come and ladybugs have nothing to do with it! I know it's all for fun so call me a party pooper if you want but those are my feelings on the subject.

"Every party has a pooper that's why we invited you! Party pooper! Party pooper!" That's me (ducking and running!).

(Edited to add: I know, I know, I have a ladybug up there on my ticker. I did choose it because of the association with China adoption. I don't mind a ladybug reference here and there. It's the crazy stuff, the constant posting of "ladybug sightings" that bug me.)

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

LID Explanation

I finally heard a reasonable and very possible reason why my LID took so long. It used to be that my agency (AWAA ) sends the dossiers to China, they get logged in, THEN go to Bridge of Love Adoption Service (in the same building with the CCAA) to be translated. But now the dossiers are getting translated first and THEN logged in. Some agencies translate the dossiers here in the US before they go to China. So those would be the agencies whose dossiers got logged in more quickly than ours.

I'll have to look into this some more, ask those with fast LIDs and those with long ones who their agency is and what their translation policy is. If my "research" doesn't support the above explanation, then we're back to who knows what the CCAA is doing over there. :-)

Have a great day!