Friday, October 9, 2009

We've seen their faces, what's next?

We've set their beautiful faces as the backdrops on our phones, they've been added to the refrigerator, and we smile every time we look at their precious eyes, and noses, and sweet cheeks. . . They've been grafted into our hearts, and we're beginning to long to go to them, hug them, assure them God has redeemed their future, and bring them home. But what happens next many of you are asking us. . .

The next thing is that we go to court. Here's what our agency said to us regarding court. . .
The court confirmed today that they will not be reopening until Oct. 12th. Once they begin work it will likely take a week or more for them to issue new court dates.
I know this time of waiting can be so hard as you long to be united with your children. I am sorry that we will have to wait more time for any new news. I am hopeful that new court dates will be given for early November but we will not receive any confirmation from the court until they begin work again. At this time, the court is putting all new cases onto a waiting list and will provide us with your family’s confirmed court date sometime in early October. We will contact your family with the date as soon as we receive it from the court. Roughly 60% of families will pass court on the first issued date, while 40% of the cases will require a second court date for successful completion of court. Second court dates can be issued 2 to 8 weeks after an initial court date. Once a family has successfully passed court they can anticipate traveling 2.5 - 4weeks later.

Families who received referrals on the same day (or within the same week or few weeks) as other families will not necessarily have a court date within the same week or few weeks. Each adoption is unique and court dates do not always fall within chronological order of receiving a referral. The paperwork needed to secure a court date, and the time frame to acquire the paperwork, is unique for each adoption. These factors, along with the court’s appointment availability, will affect the timing for your specific court date.

Often times after families pass court; America World cannot immediately begin to plan travel. Documentation from the Ethiopia court systems must be completed and received in order to move forward with booking flights and further travel plans. Therefore, please be prepared to possibly book flights a week before traveling.
So there you have it, we're waiting on court dates to be issued, praying that once that date arrives, their father will appear in court, and all the necessary paperwork will be in line for them to pass us on the first go round, and then we'll proceed with figuring out when we can travel!
What are we doing in the meantime?
1. Getting our care packages together. We're required to send at least one, but of course we'll send as many as we can! We're creating a family album to send so they can begin to see our faces, recognize our home, our pets, their grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc. We'll also be sending along a toy for each of them, an outfit and one of those nifty cards that you can record on . . we want our voices to begin imprinting on their hearts.
Care packages are sent through other families who are traveling to pick up their children. Our sweet friend Karen has agreed to make room in her luggage for ours, and we are praying earnestly for her to pass court on the first try so that she can take our package and pick up her son at the end of October! She'll also take pictures or videos of B and D for us, so we'll hopefully get to see them in action!!!!!! These are crucial to beginning the bonding process, and for easing the difficult transition these babies will go through. They'll see us one day in the Transition Home, have one more night there in the familiar, and then leave with us the next day for ever. It's looking at our pictures and enjoying the things we send that will make us a little less "scary and strange."
2. We're trying to decide on a name for little boy D. His given name is a little difficult for me to wrap my tongue and mind around, so we're contemplating different ways of Americanizing it. I stopped by and spoke with an Ethiopian family who owns a restaurant in Dallas and they gave me some great advice, but we're still undecided. . . He'll officially keep his given name, but we'll call and have him go by a slightly different version of it. . . Little girl B is an easy one, and she'll also keep her given name, but it's got a natural American "nickname" that we all fell in love with instantly.
3. Complete Online Training. Because we're adopting older children, and their memories of their first family are in tact, and they've already developed many coping skills, mannerisms, established their personal norms, etc, we have to prepare ourselves for the challenges that this will bring along with it when we blend them in to our family with our expectations, boundaries, etc. I'm sure another 2 hours of online training is not what Jason's looking forward to after the 8 hours of Hague we already completed, but alas, it will help save more hours than it costs us hopefully!
4. Figure out where we're going to put them! If you've seen our house, you know this is going to be a feat! We're tightly packed in as it is, and it's going to get tighter! We've got to buy new beds, bigger dressers, and clear out some closet space! My clothes horse pre-teen is not looking forward to this particular situation!
Well, I'm suddenly feeling a little overwhelmed. I think I'll go eat some string cheese now.


  1. Dude! I hear you on the overwhelmed part! But as we both know when the time comes everything will be just as it should be! I'm praying for a fast and successful first court date for you! P.S...I voted!!!

  2. I am so excited for you guys. This all is so wonderful and amazing. Keep resting in his hand!

  3. Those are great struggles to have =D how exciting. You're in our thoughts and prayers, can't wait to see their faces too!!

    Maria LLanely

  4. So what restaurant did you guys go to? We went to one last year that was really great and the people who worked there were so nice! We definitely need to all go, how fun would that be! I didn't realize that we were required to send a care package - we were going to anyway -but that's good to know.

    So excited for you!
    Linda Trevino

  5. How exciting for you and your family!! I have just read your blog (not sure how I came across it) but it is truly beautiful! We have 2 adopted children and live in New Zealand. Adoption is very different here and can be a very long wait but we are thankful that we didn't wait to long for our darling children. From my family to travel and enjoy every moment this planning and excitement brings.
    PS What is 'string cheese" ?