Monday, April 27, 2009

We Have an Update!!

What a nice surprise!! AJ has gained 8 lbs since January. What are his foster parents feeding him?

Here what we received:

Medical/Development:
His current health is good.
He can walk, run, dance. His speech is normal.
He does not know color yet. (that's OK, neither can his dad)

Personality:
They call him Mao Mao. (hmmm...very different than his given name)
He likes sweet foods and is not picky.
He is active. (just like his big brother!)

SoFlaMom

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Visas - Check!

Yesterday we received our visas to travel to China. What a great memory this page will make in our passports. We will look back at this time in our lives with fond memories.

In addition to the Russian Visa (from another blog) and stamps from several cruises, our passports make us look like world travelers! In reality, we live in a small little world consisting of the Caribbean (Miami is the cruise capital of the world), Orlando, Gainesville, and Jacksonville. Our big splurge is when we fly to the NE or Denver. So much for the world traveler theory. Maybe when AJ turns 18 we can be true world travelers and go to places like Europe, Australia, etc.

In case you are wondering what agency we used to get our visas, I posted the link below. The service was prompt and accurate. I highly recommend her if you are in need of a Chinese visa.

http://www.theres-always-hope.com/china_info.htm

Chinese Visa

SoFlaMom

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Another Hurdle Completed!

Fingerprints - Check
Updated I-171h to GZ - in process

The USCIS started a new process this week. Under the old process, it took 2 - 4 weeks to process and get the paper I-171h to GZ. Under the new process, the I-171h is scanned, sent to the NVC (National Visa Center), processed, and electronically sent to GZ. Being that I work in the world of computers, it just amazes me why we cannot electronically place this information into a database which should be shared by all the consulates. I'm all for imaging a piece a paper (the future of all businesses) however, in this instance, a nice relational DB with access by the officials should suffice (am I getting too techy?) Long story short, we are hoping that GZ has our updated info next week.

Anyhow, IT'S DONE!!! If we get our TA soon, the CA should not hold us up.

SoFlaMOm

Friday, April 17, 2009

No TA Yet :-(


We are so happy for our cyber friends who got their TA/CA this week. We were not among this group. However, it kind of is OK. I've been busy working on the fingerprint issue (mentioned on other posts).

I got my invitation to get my fingerprints redone on 4/29/09. This is cutting it really close to when our fingerprints expire (5/1/09). So, based on the advice of my cyber friends (that I can't wait to meet when all of our boys are home!!) I took a chance and just showed up at the USCIS office. The officer that took my fingerprints originally came up to me and said, "What happened?!?!" She ran to check the computers and the extra work that she took the first time (paper fingerprints as well as electronic prints) both FAILED. The paper prints that we all thought would be a no brainer to "pass" delayed my failure letter by 1 week. She was so upset that she took me in right away and processed me electronically only. This way, I should have my second failure registered in their computers sometime today.

Our agency is going to follow up with USCIS on Monday to hopefully expedite the next part. I now need an appointment to visit the main USCIS office in Miami (and not the greatest of neighborhoods to boot!) with police clearances, ID, and my invitation. With these in hand, I can be sworn in that I am not a criminal, terrorist, or any other "ugly" term you can come up with that would prevent us from bringing into our family a foreign born child. The last 2 times I went through this process I received my updated I-171H immediately. So I expect the same to happen again.

But this is not the end. After the I-171H is fingerprint updated, it needs to be sent to GZ which takes another 72 hours (not sure why electronic data transfers takes so long???). Once the GZ officials have the data, then we are free to get CA. Long story short, even if TA came this week, we are still in jeopardy of not being able to get a CA until the end of next week. This means we have a very small chance to travel with our friends J&S.

More on the saga later....
SoFlaMom

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Travel??

Yesterday we had a travel conference call with our agency. Another family on the call reported to our Yahoo group that they could be traveling in 2 weeks! Could this be true for us??? So soon? Yikes!!

SoFlaMom

Monday, April 6, 2009

SoFlaDad finally posts

As SoFlaMom wrote this weekend, we received our LOA (Letter of Acceptance). I was under the impression that this letter was China giving us their acceptance to adopt An Yi Fei. Had no idea that it was another letter, signed by us, stating that we wish to adopt him (SoFlaMom is shaking her head right about………now).

Every milestone that we reached, we knew we were one step closer. our home study; our dossier; our fingerprints; our physicals, etc., it didn't feel any different. However, when we received that e-mail of our acceptance letter's arrival, we realized that this is a reality. We are almost there.

Being almost there, we know how all those who went down this path before us felt. We also know how it felt to watch others receive their LOA, but not have ours. To those of you who are still waiting, do not fret. Your day is coming, and the emotions that you will feel will make all the waiting (80 days from LOI to LOA for us) worthwhile.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

L O A


3 little letters that mean so much in the adoption world. It brings hope, fear, joy, faith, and love. Our LOA arrived yesterday at our agency's office!! Today it came to our home in a FedEx envelope which we promptly signed for and are on our way to a FedEx office to ensure it gets back to our agency on Monday. The sooner the LOA is received in China, the sooner we will be on our way to meet our newest family member.
SoFlaMom