Friday, August 28, 2009

Going to China in September - Oh My Gosh!

The good Lord takes us down curvy paths sometimes....and the last 48 hours have been curvy for sure. But ultimately, God is in control....God is good, ALL THE TIME.

All along I thought I'd be traveling in October. The plan was for Anne and I to make the trip together and Mom would stay home. WELLLLLL..........we are now traveling Sept 17-30, and Mom is now going along with Anne. Very stressful couple of days, but I'm now feeling some relief that we now have a plan. Oh my goodness, SO MUCH TO DO.

Mom and I had a very nice visit with Maryann and her beautiful daughter Bella, and Jennifer and her gorgeous daughter Malia...both girls are Caroline's age and from China. It was wonderful connecting with these moms and to see little ones who will be special friends of Caroline.

I'm still a little shell-shocked that I'm actually traveling in less than 3 weeks and I will meet my precious Caroline in 23 days.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

TA Today

Got the email today that my TA is being sent. Yay! Now, the mystery is whether or not I will leave for China on Sept 17 or Oct 9. Waiting for God's plan to be revealed. I'm hanging on and trying to keep my blood pressure down.

Monday, August 24, 2009

More Fingerprinting for Mom

Today Mom got a notice from USCIS that her fingerprints did not, as quickly as she opened the notice, we got ready to make the trip to Indy to have her fingerprints done YET AGAIN. We played the 'need the appt expedited' card and handed the form to the nice lady behind the window. So, the prints are done, and we wait for them to be processed. We do know that she won't have to have them done again if there is a problem. They probably do the exact same thing as the FBI did for Mom's state fingerprinting check. When her prints did not pass, she had to have a 'name check.' OK, whatever, just get it done. No, I'm not the least bit impatient. :)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Butterflies, Butterflies, and More Butterflies

Soon after I made the decision to adopt (well, this is after God gave me a big nudge to start the adoption process) I had a very strong feeling that butterflies would play a part in the process. That may sound very silly.......and the fact is, I have no idea what that means. I did decide to decorate Caroline's room with a butterfly theme, but I think there is more than a superficial reason for this butterfly thing.

Butterflies evolve from a caterpillar.......there is this metamorphasis that takes place....perhaps that is a sort of analogy of what will happen to Caroline. She will become a part of a forever family that will encourage her to grow and become someone very special. I want to give her the 'wings to fly' so to speak.

The reason for this blog entry is this: today I was sitting outside while running a garage sale at my house. Several times today I saw beautiful butterflies. They were bright yellow with black around the edges. They were fluttering all around us (Mom and I). I've never seen so many butterflies at my house before.

I considered this another 'God moment'.....another sign that God is providing encouraging moments for me as I prepare to bring Caroline home. I feel that these 'God moments' are His way of confirming that this is part of His plan.....His schedule......His desire for me to be a mom to Caroline.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Visa Application Sent In

I sent the visa application to a Chicago courier many details to take care of, but it's done now. I'm looking at an Oct 8-22 travel time to China. Pray for the travel approval to come quickly.....but not too quickly. If it comes before the 26th, my travel date moves up to September. As much as I want to get my baby girl would greatly complicate so many things if I were to travel in September. So, I'm just praying for God's perfect timing for travel.

On Tuesday, I had one of those 'God moments.' I went to my office to do some much needed cleaning. I always end up with such a pile of stuff on my desk by the end of spring semester. Thinking back to February (or so) .......I decided to put away a wonderful calendar about China that was given to me by a former student. It is the kind of flip calendar that is not year-specific, but each day there is a description of a certain city or area of China....each page ends with a prayer. I have not looked at that calendar for about 4 or 5 months. So, Tuesday as I was cleaning I decided it was time to pull out the calendar and put it back on my desk. I opened the calendar to Tuesday's date - August 18. As I looked at that page I got was a description and prayer about Shenzhen City, where my little Caroline is from......a definite God moment. With 365 pages on the calendar, and only one page dedicated to Shenzhen City......that was not a coincidence that I pulled that calendar out of my desk. God is good.....all the time.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Fingerprints Done - Homestudy Update Done

Today was a good day. Mom and I both received our fingerprint notice from the USCIS office in Indianapolis. Since the kind Officer Kreiger from USCIS told us to 'walk-in' for our fingerprinting appointment, that's what we did today. And, our prints were finished so quickly...I was amazed. So, here's hoping that the fingerprints are processed quickly.

Also, I was able to pick up the updated homestudy. So, I think I'm closer to being able to apply for my visa. I'm going to read up on what I need to do in the morning. I'm also confused about what airline to use to fly to China. But....those details will work themselves out.

One foot in front of the step at a time....getting closer to Gotcha Day for Caroline.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Fingerprint Notices Arrive!

Praise the Lord! The USCIS fingerprint notices arrived today. The USCIS officer told us to 'walk-in' for our fingerprinting instead of waiting for our Sept 10 Mom and I will travel to Indy on Monday. I'm SO thankful that we received our notices SO quickly. Once again, I feel God's hand at work in this process. So amazing.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Bao Xin Lei....That's My Girl.

Bao = precious treasure
Xin = new
Lei = flower bud
Caroline Anne Xin Lei Lessly = my new, precious treasure...who's little lips are like rose buds.

I love you, Caroline. Can't wait to meet you in a matter of weeks.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Baby Shower!

This past weekend at the Coffman Family Reunion, I was surprised with a wonderful baby shower. It was organized by my cousin Ashley, who is more like a niece to me. Thank you, Ashley! I was presented with many wonderful gifts as well as money to purchase much needed items. I have a wonderful family. And I can't wait for my family to meet Caroline.

SCL, Referral Packet, and Fingerprints

I received a phone call yesterday from Tina at CHI telling me that my SCL (Seeking Confirmation Letter) and referral packet had arrived in St. Louis. YAY!!!!!! So, Tina said that the letter and packet would arrive today via UPS. So, you know what I did most of the day today? Yes, I put the camera by the front door and sat by a window watching for the UPS man. My plans were to take a picture of him (or her) handing me the referral packet. BUT.... no UPS truck today. I'm sure it will arrive tomorrow when I have to go out of town. That's least I know it is coming.

I also got an email from Doug, my social worker, who said that the report from my fingerprinting had arrived at his agency, but Mom's has not arrived yet. We figured that Mom's fingerprints were once again rejected by the joke. Mom's fingerprints are 'not recognized' I called the Indiana State Patrol to find out the scoop. Yes, I was right....Mom's prints were rejected. Now the FBI is doing a 'name search' on her. This report is supposed to be completed sometime this week.

I'm getting close to a 'countdown' for travel. But I have to get my TA first. I better hold off on the countdown for a little while, but it's looking like an early to mid-October travel date. CAN'T WAIT!