Monday, September 29, 2008

The Cut-Off

Referrals were issued by the CCAA for families logged-in through February 15, 2006.

Big sigh here!

4 weeks.....

30 days......

It's hard to say "We're next!" when I was so hopeful that we would be in this batch. I really wanted it to happen this week.

I have so much to do between now and November 1 (plus/minus a few days!). I guess I need to start making some lists and getting things organized around here and getting prepared to travel.

I'm disappointed, but I've climbed bigger mountains. Kaelie, Mama's on her way, you hang in there! I love you so much!

So, with a November referral, I anticipate travel will be in mid-December. There is so much to think about: Will I be home for Christmas? I can't imagine missing it! Santa is going to need to do some early shopping to get ready for that one. Christmas decorating: definitely before Thanksgiving. I have a ton of stuff to post up on Ebay to get rid of, plus try to make some money.

Guess I need to do some shopping. We have three big items we need to get for Kaelie: carseat, high chair, and stroller. And some toys! Kaelie has lots of little goodies, but as far as like a toy kitchen, baby dolls, etc. No, I take that back, Kaelie has a Cabbage Patch doll. I want to find some Asian dolls. I can think about that later, though.

Guess I can get back to my life now. The last few days have been tough. The anticipation has been agonizing! I think I can say with certainty that we will be referred in November, 42 months since we started the process on May 30, 2005.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Rumor Alert

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Today has been active on the rumor front!

According to Rumor Queen, a European source (Spanish RQ?) is saying that the cutoff is likely to fall between February 14th and 17th. I could have told them that weeks ago! My prediction at the first of the month was that the cutoff would be February 16th.

Earlier this afternoon, as I read a translation from the Spanish RQ, the way it sounded like was, well, the cutoff is going to fall BETWEEN these two dates, so it would have to be the 15th or 16th. Right on target for my earlier prediction and also right on target to trample my overly-excited mama heart. Trying to calm my heart down has been so hard!

I'm suddenly very hopeful! I'm going to go to bed and try to sleep so I can do some serious nesting tomorrow!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

New Rumor

Hi Everyone ~

There was a post on RQ tonight from a waiting family. The poster reported that their agency had contacted the CCAA and the CCAA is reporting that matching will be going on "as usual." I hope this is good news! Now if they would just do the next 8days!!! PLEASE!!! No word on the cutoff date yet!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Very Bad Rumor

Hi Everyone:

Rumor Queen posted today that a European agency is speculating that this batch will be extremely small because of the tainted formula crisis. They report that the CCAA wants to get updates on the children before sending out the referrals. She has this rated as an R2.

I'm upset about the whole formula business in China. Basically, what's happened is that the formula manufacturers added a plastic additive called melamine to infant formula. Melamine is high in nitrogen and therefore mimics protein in scientific tests. Therefore, the infant formula LOOKS like it is high in protein when in fact it is not. In lab testing, animals that ingested melamine developed kidney stones, renal failure, and infertility. There is not much out there as far as human ingestion is concerned. Melamine is the chemical that caused so many problems with the pet food last year.

I'm going to cross this bridge when I get to it. There's nothing to do at this point except pray. Kaelie is safe and sound in the hands of God and her caretakers and at this point I just have to trust that she is OK. I hope that she hasn't been given any of the tainted formula, but she probably has. In fact, CNN reported the other day on "American Morning" that this could go back as far as 2005. If we don't get our referral this month, then hopefully still next month. I'm trying not to stress out too much! There still isn't anything about a cutoff. Please pray that we are in this batch!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Nothing New

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There is hardly anything new to report today. The Spanish RQ is saying that there is a holiday in China next week (September 29-October 3) and that it is the usual custom for the CCAA to send out referrals before they are off for a week. This happened last year; referrals were sent out before the October holiday.
RQ predicts referrals to come in anywhere from September 24 through October 6.
Nothing, NOTHING! about the cut-off date!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Early First Rumor

This was posted on RQ in the comments section of her blog:

I have also heard from my agency that the group before mine with LID of 2/17/06 has been matched. No other information given.

The early rumors rarely prove true, but a mama can hope and dream........

How will the process work?

We heard from our agency (through a friend) about what the process between referral and travel is like. Thought I would share it here, mainly for my own recollection if nothing else.

Here goes:

Referral Call Process:

When the agency gets the referrals, they turn off their telephones and check and verify that each referral is in order. Most of the time they wait until the next day to make referral calls. We will not receive Kaelie's picture until it comes in via overnight delivery service with the rest of the referral package. We will not have any advance notice about when we will receive the call. We will likely know that referrals are on their way from other adoptive families and sites like Rumor Queen.

I'm hoping for the best. Best-case scenerio is that we would all be together on referral day. I don't know how likely or possible that is going to be, since we won't have a heads-up on when we'll get the call. I think I will have Stephe's call sheet in all possible locations: work, car, home. There is no telling about how it will go down. If I get the call at work, I'll most likely ask if Shelby can step out of class and be with me during the call. At least two of us will be together. Then, we will all go out and celebrate that evening! I will likely take the next day off so that I can meet the delivery service at home. Hopefully David and I will be together for that.

Acceptance Letter:

Our agency gives one week to get the acceptance letter back to them. This will give us time to consult an IA clinic and also talk with our pediatrician about Kaelie's health and if there is anything we should be concerned about. After all the acceptance letters are received, the agency will mail them back to China. If there seem to be major health concerns (this happens rarely, but it does happen), we have the option to turn down the referral and wait for the CCAA to issue another referral in the next batch. Hopefully, this will not happen!


Travel Approval:

After the acceptance letters are sent back to China, we will wait for our travel approval, which comes from the CCAA. I believe that during this time we will work on obtaining our China visas. After the TA's come in, our agency will work to secure our consulate appointments.

Consulate Appointment:

This is the final step! Once our consulate appointment is secured at the U.S. Consulate in Guangzhou, we will be able to make our travel arrangements, book flights, etc. Our agency tries to travel about three weeks after the consulate appointment, but of course this could vary widely.


Usually the time between referral and travel is about 6 to 8 weeks. That's nothing compared to how long we have waited. We will be very busy working on Kaelie's room, getting ready for travel, making maternity leave arrangements and getting everything ready for school while I am away (I think I'm going to have a terrific sub who is a retired teacher!) I've spoken to several people who are simply amazed at the amount of paperwork that must be completed during this process. But after waiting for so long, I am completely up to the task! Daunting to be sure, but doable! I can't wait to meet Kaelie for the first time!

2nd Annual Sumner Egg Festival

Hi Everybody!

We had a great day at the Sumner Egg Festival today. My friend and fellow black belt Regina and I set up a booth to raise money for our causes: me to go to China and her daughter to go to Florida for a chorus trip. We split the costs of doing face-painting, temporary tattoos, and crazy hair! It was wonderful fellowship and we both actually made a little money for our trips. It was a lot of fun. Below are a few pics from the event:





Getting set up before the event




















Danny and Regina, black belt extraordinaires! All the while, Anya, an event coordinator and ATA buddy, chats (as usual!) on the phone!

Danny was a huge help with the set up and even made a drink run after while Regina and I set up the table! Also, thanks to Clint for helping with the canopy and setting up the board for the "Go Fishing" activity.




Sara and Steffany get a new look!















Regina hard at work...or play?











Horrible picture, but I did wear my Scrapping Panda t-shirt!











We did this family...the kids were so cute!

Jess helps out and earns money for her chorus trip!













Fellow ATA'er and lovely sister Lisa came by and visited this afternoon. We all ate lunch together and Lisa agreed to help us at the Peanut Festival. My sister is the best!

I have to give a shout out to Regina and her sweet family...we first met when I taught Jess in the third grade. We were able to start a stronger friendship when we all met up at ATA, then we all started working out together. It's amazing because two-and-a-half years later we all have our black belts. Our ATA center is like a family, that what keeps me going week after week, having the companionship and like-mindedness of kind people with strong moral values. Regina and Jess even kept the boys a few weeks ago when I needed an emergency babysitter. Thanks guys!

We are going to have another booth at the Georgia Peanut Festival on October 18. That festival is much larger and we hope to make more profit!

Kaelie, Mama's coming! I love you!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

New Mama Do!

Hi Everybody!

Since it is our 31-month LID'versary today (and HOPEfully our last, but who knows!), I treated myself to a new do. My good friend and ATA buddy Anya gave me a new cut and a drastic new color! Now I'm going to tell everyone at work tomorrow (not everyone knows about our adoption or they just conveniently forget, it's not like I'm showing or anything!) that it is my "New Mama" do!
I also got a French mani and a pretty pink pedi with a pretty big toenail design (sorry if that is too much info, but it is so cute!).
Then over to Walgreen's for some makeup...maybe it will go to China with me!

Donna, this is for you!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

LID'versary....

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Well, today is the day...on February 17, 2006, our dossier was officially registered with the China Center for Adoption Affairs. We've waited ever since.

Waited.

Waited.


Renewed paperwork.

And waited some more.

Prepared a nursery.

Shopped. And stopped.

Involuntarily changed agencies.

And waited some more.

And it is hard. I never believed the month or two prior to getting our referral would be the hardest. Are we next? Or aren't we? What will our little Kaelie look like? Where is she now...Hunan, Jiangxi, Chongqing, Guangdong? Is she warm? Fed...or hungry? Sick or well? How old is she? How big is Kaelie? 9, 12, 18 month clothing? How long has she been waiting for us?

A million and one questions keep going through my mind.

What will referral day be like? Where will I be? Will I cry? Will I remember Stephe's call sheet? How will we celebrate?

When will I travel (DH is staying home with the boys)? Over Thanksgiving, Christmas? What will China be like? Will I leave a part of my heart there like I did in Russia?

To my sweet, precious daughter-to-be: Know this, that God and I love you very much and I'm looking forward to the day we meet and become a forever family.

Love, Mama

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Desperately Seeking Rumors!

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HELP! I'm going rumor-crazy! If you're LID in February and heard anything new, please leave a comment and let me know!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Rumor Queen Projections!!!!


My heart skipped a beat when I saw this! OK, now I really, REALLY can't help it that I have my hopes up for October!
October, maybe, NOVEMBER FOR SURE!
Hurry up CCAA! I want to see my baby girl!
Here's one of the reasons that I'm really hopeful for October. There were only about 17 days between the August 11 and September 2 batches, and the CCAA referred 101 poll (RQ followers, you know what I mean!) families. So, if they can do 101 poll families in three weeks, why can't they do 107 poll families in a normal month???!!!!
Please post a comment and tell me what you think! I am so, so hoping that I'm right and not just getting my hopes up. So much for guarding my heart, I want to see our baby!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Happy Birthday and Butterfly Kisses!

The boys and I spend a wonderful afternoon among friends. The Weimers and I met through APC in July, 2005. Dennis and Kim had just come home from China with their precious bundle of joy Lia. In August, 2005, I met the Talleys at a get-together organized by Dusty and her darling husband Chet. Dusty and Chet brought MaryJoyce home in September, 2006, and Jen and Mike brought home Mei this past January. Once Mei woke up from her nap and warmed up a bit, she shared some kisses with me...it just melted my heart!

Lia was so excited because we were all together to celebrate her fourth birthday! Pizza was enjoyed by all, then on to Princess cake and ice cream! She received some wonderful presents and had a great time blowing out her candles with Daddy's help! All the boys played Commandos and War, and the girls played dress up. It was wonderful to hear the stories of been there, done that parents! The visit was truly amazing!

I have to give a shameless plug here for Dennis' new movie "Fireproof." This movie was produced by Dennis and Kim's church, and is to be released later this month. Dennis worked on the production team. It was so facinating to see video clips and pictures from the production. Much of the movie, starring Kirk Cameron, was filmed in Albany and south Georgia. I even got to hold the axe, which was signed by all the actors and the director!

I'm so disappointed because I forgot to take pictures!

Twenty-Nine Lines to Make You Smile!

ENJOY!

1. My husband and I divorced over religious differences. He thought he was God and I didn't.

2. I don't suffer from insanity; I enjoy every minute of it.

3. Some people are alive only because it's illegal to kill them.

4. I used to have a handle on life, but it broke.

5. Don't take life too seriously; no one get s out alive.

6. You're just jealous because the voices talk only to me.

7. Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder.

8. Earth is the insane asylum for the universe.

9. I'm not a complete idiot -- some parts are missing.

10. Out of my mind. Back in five minutes.

11. NyQuil, the stuffy, sneezy, why-the-heck-is-the-room-spinning medicine.

12. God must love stupid people; He made so many.

13. The gene pool could use a little chlorine.

14. Consciousness: That annoying time between naps.

15. Ever stop to think, and forget to start again?

16. Being 'over the hill' is much better than being under it.

17. Wrinkled Was Not One of the Things I Wanted to Be When I Grew up.

18. Procrastinate Now!

19. I Have a Degree in Liberal Arts; Do You Want Fries With That?

20. A hangover is the wrath of grapes.

21. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a cash advance.

22. Stupidity is not a handicap. Park elsewhere!

23. They call it PMS because Mad Cow Disease was already taken.

24. He who dies with the most toys is nonetheless DEAD.

25. A picture is worth a thousand words, but it uses up three thousand times the memory.

26. Ham and eggs...A day's work for a chicken, a lifetime commitment for a pig.

27. The trouble with life is there's no background music.

28. The original point and click interface was a Smith & Wesson.

29. I smile because I don't know what the hell is going on.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Obama or McCain?

Your Issue Profile: 56% Obama, 44% McCain


Truth be told, you're not really satisfied with either of the candidates.

You could vote for either of them. You are the typical coveted swing voter.

You may want to narrow yourself down to a particular set of issues in order to pick your president.

Or start looking at third party candidates. One of them might suit you better.

Referrals and Predictions

Hi Everyone!

I wanted to update that Rumor Queen is reporting that the CCAA has issued referrals through February 9, 2006. This is terrific news...now they are only 8 days away from our LID. That being said, I think that I can honestly say that we will receive our referral the first week in November, with mid-December travel. WHAT AN AMAZING CHRISTMAS PRESENT!!!!

Here are my predictions, based on an average of the number of days CCAA has matched (over 13 batches, that would be 6 days) and number of poll families (from RQ, 86 poll families across the last 7 batches):

October - LID's through February 16, 2006 (congratulations Rhonda and Lori!)
November - LID's through February 22, 2006 (that would be US!!!!!!)
December - LID's through February 28, 2006
January, 2009 - LID's through March 6, 2006

It would be awesome to get an October referral, but the numbers just don't lend themselves to it. I just can't get my hopes up. Anyway, a November referral and December travel would be great, it would give me a couple more weeks off at the end of January with Kaelie!