Today was the last day of classes before Thanksgiving break. I was thrilled that almost all of my students were in my classes today. I did receive about 25 philosophy of education drafts that I need to finish reviewing before I leave. I assign my students in one class to write their philosophy of education. I assign a grade and give them an opportunity to rewrite as many drafts as they can before the final one is due. Today was the last opportunity for them to turn in drafts before the final one which is due next Thursday. Some of my students have turned in 4 and 5 drafts. I know this process helps students, but it certainly is more challenging as I prepare to leave for Russia on Saturday.
I received my visa today--Yeah!! I have to fax a copy of it to EAC tomorrow. I also finished the Hague online adoption training today, which cost another$120. I had to fax the certificates of completion to EAC before I could travel. So many extra hoopd then my last process with Will's adoption. I'm excited to meet my hopeful son--I hope to get even more excited as the day to leave draws nearer.
Yesterday, I celebrated my birthday. One of my friends took Will and me to dinner and she gave me a fun singing card that inspires Will to dance. Check it out!!!
Saturday, November 15, 2008
I found out on Thursday that I'm heading to Russia on Nov 29. Wow..... Due to internet protocol, I cannot be specific about the region I'm heading to. However, I leave on Sat, the 29th and arrive in region on Dec 1, Monday afternoon. I will head to the orphanage and do paper work Dec 2-4 and head home on Friday, Dec 5 and will arrive home on Saturday Dec 6. My trip will literally fly me around the world. Amazing..... I'm excited to meet my new son--Of course......Thank you for your continued prayers for him and for this process. I have much to do before I travel.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
First, I want to thank the many people who have prayed for me, this adoption process, and for the child who has been referred to me. I continue to be humbled and grateful for the ways in which God has been and is working in our lives. The news....It's great! The doctor evaluations were good and so, I have accepted this referral! Do I hear an Amen?? Because of internet protocol (I've signed a document to follow certain protocol rules), I can't share a lot of information or pictures that I currently have. When I am able, I will--Trust me! I faxed over agreement papers and have about 15 documents to complete for the region that I will be visiting. Those documents include more medical exams, police clearances (again), and other details. In addition, I am in the process of extending my immigration approval from the US gov, which includes updating my home study (with additional details) and being refingerprinted in Pittsburgh. If the immigration approval isn't extended, the entire process can be delayed. After completing the paper work, I will find out my travel dates for the first trip, where I will meet my "new son" and be officially presented with the referral. I will probably be in Russia for 5-6 days. I will then have return for court a month or two months later. Depending on court decisions, I may stay or have to return to Russia for a third trip. I'm praying that I will be able to go within a month and then return for only a second trip--the sooner the better.
I'm not telling Will quite yet--He is having a hard time waiting for Christmas. Since I have no true idea of the timing, I will wait to tell Will. In the mean time, Will continues to pray for his brother and talks about him frequently. He has no idea how much his life is about to change....
My niece, Ash, came over for dinner this evening. She brought a chef's hat and apron that my mom had sent for Will. (She had been in California over the weekend.)
Again, thank you for your continued prayers
Friday, November 7, 2008
This evening I received a referral for a baby boy--I do not know much about him and will receive a dvd and some minimal medical information tomorrow. I am thrilled and grateful that God has brought this referral. I will be sending the medical information and dvd to a doctor to assess this child's health. Please please pray for this baby and for peace and guidance for me as I must respond by Wednesday evening if I will accept this referral. In the process of adopting Will, I did not accept the first referral I received. That decision was one of the most, if not the most, difficult and hard decision that I've made. Again, please approach the throne of grace for wisdom and clarity. Please also pray for this child as well.
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
The past couple of days have been challenging for me as I struggle with patience and peace in this adoption process. Yesterday, I received a letter from Shaohannah's Hope, an organization established by Steven Curtis Chapman to help adoptive parents with financial grants. The letter informed me that I did not receive a grant. I am disappointed. While I didn't really expect to receive a grant, I still had hope that just maybe....... I have another grant application in the "hopper" and have yet to hear any word. I am still convinced that my deepest convictions about God must determine how I pray. Yet, like the Psalmist, my soul feels downcast. Pray for this child who yet lives in Russia and pray for me.