Lots going on here!! Lots of great things!!
HAPPY 1st BIRTHDAY EMERY!!!!!
I would like to say Happy Birthday to our newest little one Emery!! Today 4-6, she turns 1 year old! I cant believe our little girl is 1 already. She was barely 7 months when we got her referral but now she is 1. I want to bring her home so desperately and her having a birthday without us being there is really hard but, we will be coming SOON!!!! China centralized the the way you have to ask for an update on your child and you cant just have your agency call and check, rather you have to go through CCCWA's translation department-- BLAS- and you have to wire them $80 (with a $35 wire fee-- uggg) and they will obtain you an update and 3 pictures. If you remember, Emery's orphanage, Kunming in Yunnan, does not do pictures with the updates. In fact, it is rare to even get an update (the kids are in foster care far away from the orphanage) so by going through CCCWA, we actually will get pictures- which we would not have gotten if the request was not from CCCWA. So as lame as this new rule is, it actually will help us a lot and we might actually get pictures. So, yesterday we requested an update with pictures and they confirmed they received the wire so we just now wait. I cant wait to see how much Emery has changed. The only pictures we have of her is from when she was 3 months old so I am assuming she has changed dramatically over the last 9 months!! So HAPPY BIRTHDAY EMERY!!!! We will be there soon!!!!
That leads us to the next good news!!!!
That leads us to the next good news!!!!
WE GOT OUR LOA!!!!! We got it on Kevin's birthday- this past Wednesday! Letter of Acceptance (LOA) is the most unpredictable part of the Special Needs Adoption wait. All you China adopters know what I am talking about. The wait for LOA can take 50 day 90 days or even 130 days. The wait is all over the place and there is ABSOLUTELY no rhyme or reason why the wait varies so much. I was PRAYING we would have a short LOA but that did not happen. We received our LOA on day 91 of the wait. 3 LONG months of waiting for China to give us the final approval that Emery can be our daughter. The wait was torture but now that it is here, the rest of the process is very predictable. The thing is, I have summers off-- the whole thing-- from about Mid June till the end of August- so I wanted to be in China right when school was out so that I would get the most out of bonding time-- of course Kevin is home most of the time but I wanted my time with Emery too. As weeks were going by on our LOA wait I was seeing travel being pushed further and further into summer and it was freaking me out. BUT, now that we have LOA, if we follow the average time frames for the rest of the wait, we should probably be in China at the end of June-- so it is not as early in June as I would like, but I should still have plenty of Emery bonding time~ YAAAA!!! So what is next? We sent out yesterday our I800 to US Immigration which is the process where our government approves Emery as an immigrant and our daughter. That usually takes about 2 weeks. USCIS then sends your file to The National Visa Center (NVC) to get Emery's Visa prepared. This usually takes another 8+ days. Then once the visa is prepared the file gets transferred to the US consulate in Guangzhou and they prepare our Article 5 and that takes exactly 2 weeks and then the file is moved back to CCCWA and they issue our Travel Approval (TA). Once we get out TA we can travel anytime after that. All those steps take approx 60 to 70 days to complete so we are looking at TA beginning to mid June and travel right after that!!
Finally, I don't want to let today pass without saying happy referral day to our beautiful Mia Jun Fei!!!! We received her referral on April 6, 2007
sorry for the poor quality picture- I cant find the good quality ones on this computer
She was a chubby little baby in her referral pictures and we were in love!!! I'm going to do a quick photo shoot with her later today with her referral picture so I will add that to this post later in the day so check back, but for now I will post the first picture we ever saw of our little girl. It's been 5 years and we could not love our smart, loving, kind little type A leader more!!! We love you Mia Jun Fei and I will post her picture later today!!!