Monday, August 29, 2011

And the REAL wait begins today...

Our dearest AJ,
Hi Sweet Boy. I can already feel the tears welling up in my eyes as I write to you today. Daddy has overnighted via FedEx our documents to USCIS for immigration approval. All the paper chasing before today has been through our hands. This isn't in our hands anymore. We are at the mercy and compassion of someone, somewhere, who doesn't know us or you. We know who is really in charge though, but sometimes that control is so hard to let go of.
I got to the point last night that I couldn't look at the file that was leaving my hands this morning anymore. I couldn't read one more instruction or second guess myself as to whether or not I may have misread or misunderstood something. Tomorrow morning that file will be in Texas. After that it will go to Missouri. We'll wait in prayer for the text message and email to tell us someone has it. Then we'll wait some more....
We'll wait for our fingerprinting appointment for the FBI in Des Moines. We'll wait on the doorstep of the building in hopes of walking in to be fingerprinted before our appointment date. We'll wait as long as they say we have to. We'll wait for our approval. We'll wait to return to Des Moines one last time, I171H in hand with our entire dossier ready for apostille. We'll wait to hand over all the papers, piles and piles of papers we've been collecting for you. We'll wait for word that it has all arrived to the right places and right hands. We'll wait to hear from SDA in Eastern Europe to tell us we can come to you. We'll wait for that travel date. We'll wait to have our referral in hand. We'll wait for the blessed day we can walk into your baby house and meet you. We'll wait to hold you and kiss you. We'll wait to give you Paddington. He waits on your bed for you. We'll wait to read you "Are You My Mother?"  We'll wait to see your beautiful face. We'll wait for a day in court when we get the chance to ask a judge to please let us be your parents. We'll wait for your Gotchya Day. We'll wait for your visa and passport. We'll wait to bring you home to your new life, family, and friends. The real waiting, I think- has just started.
In the mean time, while we are waiting- we will rejoice in the One who blessed us with you and our faith rests only in Him and in His name.
I will keep working on your room. It is still waiting for you.

It's 10:37pm where you are right now. I hope you're asleep and dreaming of good things. We love you Buddy.
To the moon and back,
Mommy, Daddy, and Big Brother A

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Getting Closer- Can you dig it?!

Hey Hey Little Buddy! Mommy here!
Just finished up our FINAL homestudy visit with our social worker who's helping us bring you home Dude! Daddy is pretty relieved because he says that I will finally let him "use the bathroom,shower, change clothes, eat something, drink something, and sit anywhere I want..." :) Which of course is a complete and total....truth.
We did spend about 7 hours cleaning yesterday! Whew....glad that's over and we can resume "life" in a home that looks lived in.
Daddy surprised me the other day by picking up your dresser for your bedroom. Sure wish we knew what size you are so we could start filling it with clothes for the winter and next summer! Your bed should be here in another couple it's coming along nicely. We are just missing a certain little boy to sleep in it.
Your brother started school a few days ago (8/18) and is loving it. Already had a school dance and he's found himself a little gal friend. Hmmm....something tells me you aren't going to have any problems with that either. I'm thinking you are going to be just as much of a Cassanova as your brother is- he will show you how if you aren't sure. I don't know, something about big brown eyes and lots of eyelashes seems to work for him. Hey! You have big brown eyes and lots of eyelashes... oh boy- here we go! ;D
Well, what's left to get you home? Our social worker told us she will send a copy of our homestudy to proof read tomorrow or Tuesday at the latest. Yep, that quick! YAY! Once we have a final copy- we can send our paperwork to USCIS for approval. We're almost there Little Man, almost there!
It's a beautiful sunny summer day here that Jesus gave to us to enjoy. We are going to head out and go for a walk with your brother and your dog. Wish you were here. It's 2:37pm here, so that is 10:37pm where you are. Are you asleep? Have sweet dreams, Love Bug.
To the moon and back-
Mommy, Daddy, Big Brother A, Monster, and Fatty Fatty 2x4

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Today You Are 6!

Happy Birthday To You. Happy Birthday To You. Happy Birthday Dear Sweet AJ, Happy Birthday To You! We so wish you were here with us, little love. Do you know what a birthday party is? Well, no worries. If you don't- YOU SO WILL. I think we have more friends and family planning a party for you that Daddy and I won't have hardly anything to do but hold you and love you. I like the sound of that, AJ.
Holding you and loving you.
To update you on where we are with our paperwork...the two marriage certificates we have been agonizing over finally arrived yesterday, with their apostilles!! YAY and WHEW!! Our second homestudy is scheduled for this coming Sunday August 21. And Daddy and I faxed more papers for their pre apostille check yesterday. We got all of those done with the help of some dear friends, Nate and Libby. You'll meet them too. You'll love them as much as we do. If all of those are ok- we just need our finalized homestudy and USCIS approval to gather the final papers for our dossier- and then off to Eastern Europe it will go. We are asking everyone to pray that USCIS approval goes QUICKLY and smoothly! We know that it's all in the hands of Jesus, so we will come as soon and right when He says it's time. We just pray it's sooner than later. :)
It's 5:32pm where you are right now. Maybe you're getting ready to eat supper? I wonder what you are having? Have you ever had birthday cake before? I see Scratch cupcakes in your very near future. They are delicious, almost as delicious as you. I'll write more to you very soon. Know that we think about you and pray for you non stop.
To the moon and back-
Mommy, Daddy, Big Brother A, Monster, and Two

Monday, August 8, 2011

Thinking of and missing you...horribly

Our dearest AJ,
How are you Love? Did you have a peaceful sleep? I so hope it was full of great dreams of doing big things! It's 68 degrees, partly sunny, and 6:45am where you are right now. Are you just starting to open those beautiful brown eyes or are you squeezing them closed for a few more minutes? I would suggest, you know, as your Mommy and all- that you keep them closed for a few more winks.

We've been busy here, still working on getting you home! We've had a few minor glitches with paperwork, but I think I've got the kinks out and we should be alright now. I'm waiting for my employment letter from my work and our Doctor called us today to let us know our medical papers should be completed in the next day or so. You'll meet him, our doctor. He and his wife and family are great friends of Daddy and me. They actually helped us so much in our fundraising to help bring you home! We are so blessed to have them in our lives.

The most frustrating glitch, which I think I finally fixed for good this morning had to do with the marriage certificates we had received from Oregon. (We'll take you there too, maybe even next summer!) The ones we had, that your Auntie Kimie so graciously obtained, paid for, and mailed to us, were not the ones that the state of Oregon would apostille. They were notarized by a county registrar, which the Secretary of State's office does not have a signature on file for. We didn't find this out until an envelope came in the mail on Friday night, spelling out what we had done wrong. It was too late to do anything about, but stew and get more frustrated. So, FedEx received a donation of 73 dollars to overnight our useless notarized marriage certificates to Salem, Oregon. This morning I was able to buy two new notarized marriage certificates- this time notarized by a State Registrar- and the Vital Statistics office in Portland will send them to Salem for apostille. Daddy, your brother, and I went and faxed the paperwork for apostille to Salem tonight. I've been assurred and reassurred by the Secretary of State office- this will all work out and we will receive what we need. I'll leave it in God's hands now.

Been getting ready for our final homestudy meeting- tomorrow at noon! I've been cleaning. I've been shampooing carpet. I've been dusting. I've been mopping. I've been scrubbing. Your house has now been cleaned within an inch of its life. The regular cleaning is just the norm but it's probably been a good 6-8 months since I shampooed carpets last, yikes!! Shhh...don't tell.

AJ, I have to tell you how much we love you. We've never met you, but we miss you. You were never supposed to grow in my tummy. And for some reason, I wasn't supposed to be your mommy until now. Maybe I was supposed to have your brother first and learn how to take care of him,  to get comfortable with being Anthony's mommy. Then, maybe I was supposed to meet Daddy so he could learn from Anthony and me. And this last 9 years was all to prepare our hearts and lives for your VIP most grand entrance. I want you to know, without a doubt and no matter what- we are your family. We've prayed for you before we knew anything of you. We asked God to bring us someone to love and to call our own. We asked God to bring us a little one who would complete our family. He showed us your picture and gave us your "name." Don't ever think that we had to see two lines appear on a stick to fall in love with you. Our two lines appeared the day we saw your picture, the night that Daddy read out of  Matthew and through his tears, said- "Let's bring our little son home." We love you as if you've always been ours. And I think, really, you always have.

To the moon and back-
Mommy, Daddy, Anthony, Monster, and Fat Two-ee Cat

PS. I'll explain the "two lines on a stick" comment when you're a bit older. ;)