Sunday, March 30, 2008

Thank you, Uncle S....

...for taking too much of our money this past year! We had our taxes prepared today and got the fabulous news that we will have almost exactly the amount we need for the next part of our adoption process coming back in the form of a refund!! This is so good and it cuts down considerably on what we have left to save in order to make our dreams of our family come true. I feel so much less stressed now, it's unbelievable. We still have a lot of work to do to get where we're going, and some of what's to come will be an uphill climb...but this is the best news we've had in a while.


Saturday, March 29, 2008

Small World...

Today after class I mentioned to my classmate, Charity. that we had just completed our home visit. Turns out she went through domestic infant adoption about six years ago. She sat and talked to me for about 45 minutes and it was really nice to hear a success story so soon after our home visit. Sometimes it's comforting just to know you're not alone in this big, crazy world. Talking to her today was a good reminder that I'm exactly where I'm meant to be, even if the process sometimes seems long and overwhelming. Today was a good day.

Sighs of Relief

Well the home visit is complete and we can now move forward again! First I'd like to say a BIG "thank you" to everyone who’s been sending us good vibes and asking about our home visit. It went very well and (as people tried to tell me) my worrying and stress was all pretty unnecessary.

Once Elly and Amanda got here I was able to relax and be myself and I think Michael felt comfortable too. They were here for about an hour and 45 minutes and they asked us all sorts of questions, from how we plan to discipline our kids to whether there was anything we would change about our own childhoods. It was like the most intensive interview you can imagine times 100, and personal rather than professional.

But there was nothing really difficult to answer...the questions did require some careful thought and it was important for us to be ourselves, but I think we did okay with that. Once we were done talking they took a fairly brief tour of our house and that was that. Now they’ll work on writing their final report for the courts and we have to work on our "Dear Birthparent" letter and our adoptive parenting photo albums. These tasks seem daunting and it’s a lot to do but at least these projects are more intriguing than the initial paperwork was. I’m so excited to be moving on and making our way through the process!

Thanks to my parents we got a lot of good (needed) house projects done in preparation. One repaired and one new garage door, a new back screen door, a repaired front window screen, a nasty wood pile removed from our back carport, a new screen for our sliding glass door and some other odds and ends. We also got a TON of deep cleaning done, which was much needed. I’m glad these things are all taken care of now and I’m so thankful for all the help from my family but I’m also wondering why I stressed myself out so much now that it’s over! Just one of those lessons that can only be learned through personal experience I suppose.

I feel happy, if exhausted.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

One More Day to Go...

...and I'm still feeling nervous but not as much so now that the house is slowly coming back together. Michael and I spent several hours tidying up the basement last night and it's looking much better. Dad, Nick and I also got all the old wood that was on our back carport loaded onto the truck/trailer yesterday afternoon. That's been an unsightly mess in our back yard for more years than I care to remember. It's a huge relief to have it cleaned up! Other than that it's just the usual cleaning and tidying that I have to do...most of the deep cleaning and big jobs are done or well on their way. I'll be glad when I can relax again! Between the home study preparations, several huge school projects, and a (much anticipated) visit with my cousin who is in town from Colorado just for today...this is one CRAZY week!!

Sunday, March 23, 2008


My nervousness has been coming and going in waves these past several days. It's so weird to think this is all happening. Right now. On one hand I feel completely prepared for the journey ahead and on the other I feel like I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing or what I'm supposed to be doing. I'm really excited for the home visit and the home study process because I'm ready to complete all the requirements so we can be in the pool of waiting parents but on the other hand it feels utterly overwhelming and clunky as we make our way down the path to "the pool." I know we'll get there eventually and part of me can't wait for that. The other part of me though is scared of fall the unknowns. My feelings and my back-and-forth mind frame are weird, I'm not really sure how to make sense of all this.

On a happy note though, my parents came over to help us on Saturday. With their financial and physical assistance, we were able to get some really big projects started and/or taken care of. We got our front garage door fixed, which has been semi-broken since 2003 and completely broken since last year. We're also getting a bran new back garage door installed, which is great since the one we have now is ancient and is pretty much a disaster waiting to happen. My dad is also putting in a new screen on our sliding glass door, a new storm door for our back door, a new lighting fixture in our kitchen, and a replacement screen in our front door. All this stuff has been piling up for some time and it feels so great to be getting it taken care of. My mom has also been helping me do some deep spring cleaning, which is so needed and getting it done feels great! I think our tub is as clean as it was when we bought it and our book shelves have probably never been cleaner. It's all good and...home study in progress or not...this all feels like good work and good improvements being made.

So there are four more days until the one I'm counting down to, I'm sure there will be more to come...

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Home Visit

Well it looks like our home visit (one very important part of our overall pre-placement assessment) is probably going to be on Thursday, March 27th! It didn't take Elly long at all to review our papers. I'm SUPER excited and also SUPER nervous!! I've been reading a little on what to expect and, amongst other things, this is what I found:

"The most important thing to remember is to remain calm about the home visit – the purpose of the social worker’s visit is not to find ways to turn you down, but rather, to be able to confidently recommend you (and your home) as a great place to raise a child." That from Exploring Adoption, which is a web site with lots of valuable info.

Still though - all those old myths and things I've heard in the past about surprise visits and extreme nitpicking make me nervous. I know Elly is working with our (and our future child's) best interest at heart...I KNOW that...and yet I'm still all jittery inside. The other part of me though, is EXCITED, elated in fact!! It feels SO GOOD to be finally moving along. I've wanted be a mom...for such a very long time and now we are making progress toward that reality.

I feel like laughing and crying all at once!!!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

44 pages later

We've finally managed to finish our whole stack of pre-placement assessment paperwork. All totaled we have 44 pages to hand over to Elly tomorrow. I'm so excited to be moving forward with this, there are no words! We have taken much longer than I thought we would to reach this point and I am feeling a huge relief at getting it done. The next big step is going to be the pre-placement assessment (home study) itself. I'm nervous but honestly a this point I just want to get the show on the road!!