Thursday, February 28, 2013

Somewhere o're the Wild Blue Yonder

Flying high in USPS truck/plane/vehicle of sorts.....

IS OUR I-800A EN ROUTE TO USCIS IN TEXAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The last two documents arrived today & the folder was back in the express mailer & to the local post office about 37.5 minutes later! In between all that drama, I changed out all the boys' clothing for size this afternoon & did some other mammoth organizing tasks that had been on the back burner (Thank you Stormy for all your help!)

*This* is what is referred to as paper pregnancy nesting....

Monday, February 25, 2013

A Shout Out for Friends

This is a re-post from over at Forty to Forever ( Today's family is the Mitchells', who are bringing home Adam (you'll recall from the Awesome Adam Hidden Treasures' auction & he's in Princess P.'s orphanage) and Mathias! You can follow the family's adoption blog at A Journey to Add 2 More ( Jaclyn and her family are but 2 weeks from potentially traveling to meet their precious boys! Please GO check out these links, PRAY over these precious children and families, and GIVE as the Lord leads and you are able! Thank you so much!!!!

Day 11: Matthias for the Mitchell FamilyPosted on February 25, 2013 by fortytoforever
Our Goal is to raise $500 for Matthias and Lina… $476 to go!
I am so excited to share this wonderful family with you today! The Mitchell family first began their adoption for a little boy named Adam. They were almost fully funded and doing well in fundraising to bring their son home.

Adam is not in a good orphanage. He is almost 6 years old and weighs just 16 pounds. He has hydrocephalus and just received a shunt this past September, after over 5 years of agonizing pain. In the midst of trying to get their adoption expedited to get him the medical care and nutrition he desperately needs, they made the commitment to bring home a second son – Matthias. This means they are now crunched for time to finish their fundraising efforts.

Matthias was recently transferred to a group home at nearly six years of age… In the last two months since being there, he has learned to sit up, crawl and walk with assistance. Matthias does not have a medical diagnosis, but he is significantly delayed due to being in an orphanage. We are fundraising for this second boy, so the Mitchell family can continue to move quickly and bring both brothers home.

After knowing Jaclyn Mitchell for just a short time, let me tell you – this lady is an amazing advocate for orphans. She shouts so loudly for the adoptions of every other family she knows that she often forgets to remind people about her own fundraisers! Can we take a day and return the favor? Shout for this sweet mama and her two wonderful boys!

We also have an extra special giveaway today!! If you donate at least $10 you will be entered to win a $25 gift card or $25 to the Reece’s Rainbow child or family of your choice. We will be giving away two gift cards! One when we meet the first half of our goal ($250) and the second when we meet our fundraising goal for the day!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

More milestones :D

Today we received word that our Hague oversight is completed! This is the final hurdle to complete our home study & will allow us to file our I-800a as soon as I have a hard copy in hand-should be this up comming week. My February 1 goal came & went, but March 1 is still more than do-able! I have all the forms and what-not for the I-800a, but am not entirely sure how to present it. Sort of want to stick it in some sort of binder, but I don't know as that would be helpful or not. I am open to suggestions on this one, lol!

I also (just now, like 5 minutes ago) wrapped up all of our education for the adoption. Both sets (long story....) But it's DONE!!!!! Hooray, hooray! My regular computer croaked, so I have been working on my very old, very cranky, likes to die rather than open PDF's desk top. That made the course work loads of fun ^_^ Upon the third or so crash in an hour, in between emails gone MIA, and other disasters inherent to the process, Mr. P., who seems to never tire of the cute paper pregnancy analogies, surmised that this is what's known as paper pregnancy 'Braxton-Hicks'.

Next stop....dossier!!!!!!!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

It's the first day of Lent....

(No, our church doesn't historically observe the traditional church calender, however, 40 days of preparation seems especially meaningful this year...)

AND is the huge kick off to Forty to Forever! Today all funds raised go towards the guest of honour, Sweet lil Lina , and ROOF, a Russian orphan adoption ministry. There's a beautiful devotional as well, talking about the historical background of the Lenten season, a reading in Isaiah 64, and a challenge. You should do today's--it's pretty managable. :-)

But MOST OF ALL, please be challenged to PRAY. This is not the last thing, the thing we do when we feel we have nothing left to offer, but should be the first weapon we draw in this spiritual battle. Let's face it; to quote Voddie Baucham, we're decorated dust, we have NOTHING to offer a Holy & Merciful God. But we also have a Saviour, who has shown us the way, through His cross, to go boldly before the throne and petition the very God of the universe on behalf of these children. Please LOOK at their faces, choose just one, put their picture on your fridge with all the other treasures that accumulate there. PRAY for that child. There is a home & a family. I won't be naive; God is not a vending machine with a prayer in, petition out policy. Sometimes, He calls these sweet babies home to His forever family. And He's still GOOD. I can say that with some certainty, knowing my own two sweet boys are safely with Him. But we know we are not outside His will to pray for early families, because His Word assures us that he places the fatherless in homes. (Psalm 68 )

New International Version (NIV)

6 All of us have become like one who is unclean,
and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags;
we all shrivel up like a leaf,
and like the wind our sins sweep us away.
7 No one calls on your name
or strives to lay hold of you;
for you have hidden your face from us
and have given us over to[a] our sins.

8 Yet you, Lord, are our Father.
We are the clay, you are the potter;
we are all the work of your hand.

{Blogger's being a putz about hyperlinks, so y'all are going to have to copy & paste this one Forty to Forever }

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Updates and Trip Day #1 & 2

    Updates, frankly, is a misnomer….there's nothing much new to report. We are still waiting on our Hague oversight component to be completed so we can file our I-800a (for the government forms lingo uninformed, that's essentially obtaining permission from OUR government to adopt.) I am also paperwork gathering for our dossier (that's the stack o'forms that gets shipped to Penny's government to obtain their permission.) This process is as stop & go as a bunch of 4 year olds playing red light/green light, lol! On a bright note though, I got my official US passport!!! I feel like such a grown up J


    So I promised some trip photos of our adventure to KY, visiting the Cincinnati Zoo and the Creation Museum. We left on Thursday, really, respectably early for 'Zinger family time keeping, and headed our 64, following it all the way to Lexington, where we caught 75 north. We discovered that 64 in West Virginia has numerous tolls, but not too much traffic, and pretty decent roads all things considered. The front which gave us fog and rain, had coated the trees in eastern Kentuckey, making them absolutely glow. Forgive the through the window pics…

By the time we were hitting Lexington, Mr. P. and I were both frantically searching for sun glasses, as the clouds had certainly lifted, and while chilly, the weather was gorgeous for the entire rest of the trip. We stayed in Florence KY, which has a unique welcome:


Not especially readable here, but it says "Florence Y'all" I found this amusing. After finding our exit, spotting our hotel, and then missing our turn & finding the exit all over again… We finally arrived. The little boys thought it was great that the airplanes from the local airport appeared to be going right up over the highway. Airplane here!

We loaded into the room, looking only slightly like national lampoon's home school vacation, and Paul thoughtfully made a run to White Castle for us, and Lee's Chicken for him. Never had real White Castle. I highly recommend everyone find some excuse to try a real White Castle burger (or 4-5 real WC burgers…!)

    Friday AM we stopped by The Creation Museum, but the 2 day tickets have to be consecutive days, so we opted instead to hit the Cincinnati Zoo. Not all the exhibits were open (many critters are apparently not amused by day time highs of 30 ^_^ ) but the winter entrance fees are also greatly reduced. Took way too many pictures to count, but these were among my favourites:

My cold & goofy boys!


This guy, flapping about, is a Sellar's Sea Eagle. Very cool, impressive beak. Bad news to be the fishy…


Mr. Polar Bear. He seriously posed like nothing else. Obviously, he wasn't the least bit put out by the temperature (or lack thereof, depending upon whose opinion you sought). I am not sure I have ever seen a Polar Bear quite this up close. It's hard to fathom just how very, very large they really are.



We also saw some manatees in one of the large indoor displays. I promise, I've gotten out & gone to zoos, but not sure if I'd seen a manatee in an aquarium setting like this (though, like all the other Richmonders, I was glued to the TV when the one swam up the James River a few years back!)

They also had penguins


And ridiculously fat squirrels, who spoke mooch the tourists!


We stopped by the gift shop, and then headed back to the hotel to thaw, swim, and eat an ever so healthful dinner for assorted snackies including by not limited to spaghetti-o's, mac & cheese, left over chicken tenders, salad, sandwiches, and I am pretty sure 2 yogurts and a can of soup.