Thursday, April 30, 2009

Passports and Visas and Emigration Permits

Okay, so the passports are ours and the Visa is just an approval so Jaemin can receive his Visa in Korea.

We all received our passports two Mondays ago, except the girls'.  So I called for a couple of days to check on the status and then finally asked to have someone call back.  The lady who processed our other 4 passports called back Friday.  But, by then I had already received the denial I was expecting asking for the girls' adoption decrees to prove they were US citizens.  The lady admitting our paperwork at USPS at the beginning of April refused to take the documents.  So I ran to get the documents mailed that night and sent a check to expedite their passports so we didn't run into any other snags.  But, I did write a note to cancel the checks if they could since it was not our fault.

When the lady called me Friday I told her I had already mailed them to her attention and told her what happened.  She said she would call when everything arrived so I could rest easy.  She just called yesterday to let us know that she had everything and was sending them out to be printed and we would have them in about a week.  AND she voided our checks!  Federal government being nice?  That was awesome!  Saved us $120.

Now for Visas.  As you know we were approved by USCIS for our I600 on 4/20, which is really quick!  NVC (National Visa Center) received the approval on 4/27 and by 4/29 we were logged out of NVC and it was sent to the embassy in Korea.  All this is is an approval saying we're okay from the US' side and telling the embassy that as soon as the Korean agency applies his Visa can be issued to come home.  This doesn't mean we're done.  First a packet is sent from the embassy to the Korean agency to make them aware we're done on this side.  Then, if our son has his passport or approval (emigration permit) the agency can schedule a Visa interview and submit the packet back, get his passport and send him home.  Sounds easy, but it still takes sometime.

I watch other family's posted timelines and for this SWS (our Korean agency) we shouldn't have longer than 2 1/2 weeks left, BUT our home study just left for Korea this week, so I don't know if this will hold us up or not.  The placing agency in NY didn't know either.  She didn't think more than a week, but really didn't know.  Those darn EPs (emigration permits) are a huge mystery to all adoptive families.  So, regardless of the fact that our agency told us travel calls are usually about 4-6 weeks from I600 approval, but have been running 4 weeks, we will just have to wait and see.  I'm still holding out for the 4!  :)

So pray for us.  Hope we can leave that last week of May so Kaelin doesn't have to miss school or summer school to go.  That would be perfect timing in my perfect little world.  :)


Thursday, April 23, 2009

Still working on passports

We finally got the girls' denials for passports.  It's been so frustrating.  We applied on 4/4 and I brought their adoption decrees and Korean passports because I knew I was supposed to.  I insisted they go with the applications, but the lady working passports at USPS that day refused to at least humor me because she knew better.  Well, now I had to pay $14 to send that stuff plus I'm paying $60 each to expedite.  They do not know what they're doing.  The info line decided to let our USPS know that they were wrong so they'll know how to process these from now on.  I'm glad someone else won't have to deal with this headache!

So, if you have an adopted child, out of country, and want to get their passports, insist the proper documentation go no matter what!


Wednesday, April 22, 2009

I600 Approval

So we know have another step down.  USCIS approved our I600 application.  This means the state side is just about done.  Our agency is applying for the interstate compact this week too.  That the last state side deal.  That shouldn't take very long, maybe a couple of weeks.  The Korean side still has a lot to do.  They have to issue his passport and visa.  They cannot even begin his visa until our approval arrives in Korea through the National Visa Center.  That should be next weeks sometime.  It's hard to estimate the amount of time Korea will take for their portion yet, but we're fairly sure he'll be home before my birthday at the end of June.  We're hoping for a call in May, but it's iffy.   We'll see if we can be one of those super speedy process people like a few people get lucky enough to be.  :)


Saturday, April 18, 2009

I'm sooooo tired

Kaelin and I have been shopping all day.  We were looking for chairs to go in the kitchen that we could match up to add to our table for Jaemin and a dresser for his room.  I finally found a dresser for a reasonable price and the chairs weren't bad either.  Once we get the boys moved we'll get a mattress for the big bed that will go in his room.

I finally let my guard down enough to really buy him some stuff.  I've been buying right around 9 month.  Thinking he should fit in there pretty well.  We got him a Cardinal's romper to start him off right.  Lois, you'll love it.  I got him a sleeper to wear on the plane and a few other things in case he has some accidents on the plane.  We don't have near enough clothes yet, but we have another month or so.  Only other thing, besides clothes, is diapers, wipes and formula to buy.

I've been starting to pack today a little bit.  It's such a big trip and so much to think about when you're bringing little ones.  So, after Kaelin and I bought the gifts for the foster family and workers at the agency we came home and bagged them up and organized gift bags, etc. so we can easily get them ready once we're in Korea.  I now know I AM going to overpack.  That's me by nature.

Oh well.  Done for now and probably until we get the call or at least a room to spread this stuff into.

Friday, April 17, 2009


Jaemin William.

Our papers have all gone to Korea now, so we can show him off.  We've done our thing with immigration and now we just wait for both countries to issue a visa and passport.  Sounds easy, but it does take some time.  The agency is saying, on the long side, June/July, so we're hoping May/June.  Of course, late May.  We're not done with the bedrooms yet.  :)  Anyone want to come over and help us paint two bedrooms soon?

These are my favorites of Jae.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Another step taken

Our agency has Jae's legals.  So now they will file our I600 with immigration.  Problem is we haven't even filed our I600A and been fingerprinted.  So we're going to try to carefully coordinate this.  We already had an appointment to do our part and will do that this week.  They will, meanwhile, fed ex their portion and we'll try to see someone to put the two pieces together so they don't get confused down the road.

Approval could take 30-60 days...according to USCIS.  Generally, our offices is a couple of weeks or so, but I'll be happy with a month.  This keeps us in the realm of possibility of June.  I'd even settle for late June.  ;)

Monday, April 13, 2009

So proud of myself

I starting getting allergy shots...AGAIN... in January.  Once I was done with build up a girl at work agreed to give them to me since she' s a nurse.  I knew she wasn't going to be at work some days last week, so she'd been teaching me how to do it myself since March.  Beside, I need to learn just in case.  She said instead of my arms I could do the fat in my thighs...there's plenty there to grab onto.  :)  So tonight I got all of my stuff out and did exactly like she said and it didn't even sting!  That was much easier than I ever expected.  I feel much better about doing them myself now.  YAY me!


Sunday, April 12, 2009

I just loved this picture so much

I couldn't resist.  We, obviously didn't plan it this way,  but the yellow in her hair and on her dress was so cute next to Grandma's daffodils while egg hunting.

Happy Easter!!

Another Easter gone.  It was a good day...not overly nice outside, but good.  Church was nice.  They had different music that I really enjoyed.  For some reason, I got kind of overwhelmed at some point in mass.  I can't remember if it was the music or just something Father was saying at the time.  I just kind of felt very blessed....VERY blessed...all at once thinking about last year at Easter and Brian was barely walking again and this year we're waiting for our 5th blessing.  God truly is amazing.  I never, in a million years, saw my life this way.  Not in a million.

Here are some pictures of the kids from today.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Baby, baby, baby

Nothing like a labor that's very short.  Problem is you don't know how long it will actually be, so what do you do?

So far, I've spent the last month, since finding out we have a son, doing plenty of paperwork.  Signatures, notaries, copies of birth certificates, you name it, we've done it!  Tomorrow, I'm sending our official acceptance Fed Ex, back to the agency.  It won't leave for Korea until 4/20 due to their schedule, but this will give them plenty of time to check it for errors.  I got it all scanned and copies tonight, which felt really good.  After we go to immigration next week, we should have no more paperwork.  We will have officially done about 3-4 months of paperwork in 1 month!  This paperwork ends up being about 3 inches thick when you're through with it.  Really amazing when you get through it all.

As far as getting ready for Jaemin, we're getting there.  We're still working on the big boy's new room.  We're going to have to pay to get some help so we can get it done in time.  Only so much you can do when you both work and have 4 kids.  We have the basics of what we need, so we'll be okay.  Our friends are letting us borrow their crib mattress.  We still, amazingly, have the crib.  I was just about to sell it at this month's rummage sale.  I left a booster with tray at mom's, so we're getting that back until Brian can make a bench to go with the table we have.  We're slowly getting some clothes.  I have a whole rough tote now.  I went rummage saling for some and some girls at work have brought in some.  He has PLENTY of toys!  Another girl at work is having her son bring home some clothes from her niece's 2 year old in May.  Someone else at work bought us a diaper bag.  It was actually the one I'd been eyeing at Kmart, so that was pretty cool.  She filled it with receiving blankets, socks, bottles and nipples.  We have enough to get by now.  I think the only thing I'll have to, eventually, get is clothes that will fit at this age, more socks, diapers, wipes, blah, blah, blah.  :)

Once we get the boys moved out, paint and carpet Jaemin's room and buy a dresser or chest for Jae we can get the clothes out and figure out what we still need.  We should have around 2-3 months to do this.

We'll get it done......eventually.


Monday, April 6, 2009

We have a referral!

It's the official referral.  They expected it by 5/1, so this was great news!  We're getting everything taken care of this week, hopefully.  Then the paperwork will be off to Korea.  Once we get his legals and can finish up with immigration we'll really be on our way.  Could be as early as June or as late as September.  We're hoping for July!

We got a picture too and he's too cute!  I'll post that after we get our acceptance off to Korea.

Thanks to one of the local bank employees (who's staying late), we're getting our papers notarized quickly.  Hopefully, I have enough time after work to really go through the paperwork and get things in order and ready before we get notarized.

We're getting closer Jaemin!!

BTW, you know what's super funny is I called my mil for something and also told her we had his referral and I was in the middle of packing things up to send to him when I told her what we'd gotten him.  We'd gotten him a little blanket animal and then I bought a 2nd to keep at home in case his foster mother didn't send this one back with him.  She told me how she'd already gotten him and then was telling me about it.  We bought the exact same one.  So now Jaemin has 3!  One for Korea, one to bring home and one to keep at daycare.


Wednesday, April 1, 2009


I think that speaks for both of us.  Brian's been home all week with Kaelin.  She started running a temp last Saturday.  Monday he brought her to the doctor because her kindergarten class has been running Influenza B through the class and we wanted her tested.  The nurse practioner didn't seem to think it was necesary and didn't do it.  So, now, today, Kaelin is still sick after 5 days and Chelsi has it.  We got her in and made them run the test and she tested positive.  So we now have meds for Chelsi, Cole and Chase so hopefully Chelsi's won't last as long and the boys won't get it at all.  I'm FURIOUS at that nurse for thinking she could charge us $25 to tell us it was a virus....REALLY, no kidding?!  The flu generally is!  We wanted to protect the other 3.  We didn't need Chelsi getting it for sure.  With the high temps Kae was running Chelsi would risk another febrile seizure.  So, now we're having to medicate her 'round the clock to keep her from spiking to fast.  I picked the girls up from Brian around 4:30 after he took them to the doctor.  He then went after the meds.  He came home at 8:00 pm!  Waited in line at one pharmacy for an hour to be told they were out and then went to another and had to wait over an hour to fill.  Luckily, while he's been home with sick little Kae, he's been able to work on the boys' room, but he's now at a point he has to wait on others in order to go any further.

We also found out we can't file our I600A without home study.  So we had to cancel our appointment.  And the worker who's been processing that office's I600's for years (and was quite great at it/quick) passed away last week.  I'd just received an email from her two days before she died.  So sad.  She was quite young.  So who knows how slow and delayed that office will be without her.

It's going to be a long, long process!