Thursday, September 27, 2012


We have been submitted!!!!
The countdown begins in earnest, and you can expect to see me post that we are outta here in 4-6 weeks.
That's all for now!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Epic Fail

After all of that work, our dossier was rejected.  Our medical had the wrong codes, and I failed to include the embassy address on one of the forms.

It is unlikely that I can get it where it needs to be before next Thursday, but you know I will be trying!

So again, stay tuned...

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

All out CRAZY!

After the awesomeness of the last post on Tuesday, who knew that Wednesday and Thursday would not go quite as well.  My daughter Sveta and I were scheduled to leave for Georgia to attend the Together for Adoption conference to man a table and host a break-out.  What could go wrong?

The day began with more email from my facilitator, but this one had a different tone: (I have highlighted every point that caused my heart rate to skyrocket)


I should have noticed this problem earlier, but I did not. I am really sorry about it.
The social worker made a mistake in you passport number in your home study. If you have a copy of the home study, please revise it and you will see on the first page, your passport number is different from the copy of you passport. There is a chance nobody will notice it, but there is also a chance they will see it and reject the dossier, because of this stupid mistake.
How fast can you correct it?
I was planning to submit the whole dossier on the 20th of September, which is Thursday. Do you think we can do it? If we are not able to submit the dossier on the 20th, the next time will be the 27th of Sept. In other words every Thursday.

Talk about knocking my hat in the creek!

So how fast could I correct it?  You know, since I'm supposed to leave for Georgia at noon and I still had to drive to Joliet to pick up a box of t-shirts to be sold for Village of HOPE.

Prepare to travel at the speed of TRACI!!!

This is what it took to make it happen:

Quickly found the error on my home study.  Made the correction and reprinted out the first page of the home study for reassembly.  Discovered that all of the margins were crazy and spent the next 20 minutes reconstructing the cover page.
Reprinted cover page.
Drove to Joliet at 9am an got the shirts.
Drove to Carolyn's house to have another form notarized.
Discovered I needed 2 home studies for submission but I only had 1.
Called social worker- no answer.
Called home study agency.
Re-called social worker and explained the problem.
Panicked when she said she may not have another original.
Waited for a call back.
Social worker had located an original and requested the correction.
New wrinkle- home study in Oak Park, an hour north of my house.
Drove to Oak Park and retrieved home study.
Drove into the city for Appostilles.
Gave explicit instructions to Sveta about where to take the paperwork while I circled the block on State Street so I didn't have to pay for parking.
Frantically called Sveta's cell phone 15 times as I watched her walk into the wrong building.  She didn't answer until I had circled the block once.  She had realized her error and went to the correct building next door.
I circled the block for over an hour while I waited for Sveta to return.  
Used that time to locate a FedEx office.  
Discovered one around the block.  I am not kidding.
Sveta finally came down right when I was passing the entrance for the hundredth time.
Drove her around the block and handed her a pre-filled out FedEx form and envelope.  
Stressed that delivery must be in 4 days. (this is how long the previous 2 packages took)
Sveta completed the transaction and states that delivery will be on the 17th.  Plenty of time for 20th submission.
We headed to Georgia around 3pm.

I wish I could say the saga ends there, but I would be lying.

Sveta and I drove a little over 300 of our 700 miles before turning in at a not so Super 8.
We collapsed into our beds and went to sleep.
Up at 4:30 am.
Decided that Sveta needed to experience WAFFLE HOUSE for breakfast.
Continued 400 miles to Georgia and arrived right on schedule at 3:30pm.

It is at this point that things take an unexpected turn for the worse.  I will just say that no orphan conference is complete without at least one hysterical adoptive mom, and unfortunately this mother was me.

What caused this explosion?  I decided to track The Package. 
The screen happily informed me that my package would arrive on the 20th by 6pm.


My heart was racing as my fingers punched, yes punched in the FedEx phone number.  
The string of unfortunate souls who had to handle my rapidly escalating call learned that hell hath no fury like an adoptive mother being told her paperwork was not going to get there on time.

I think it was when the person I spoke with told me, "Well, all I can tell you ma'am is that I HOPE it gets there on time."

This was a very poor choice of words on his part.

 (I will take this opportunity to remind you gentle readers that I work for Project HOPEFUL.  Did you catch HOPE in there?)


Yes, I really said that. 

The call ended with them letting me know that my package was already in Paris and that they would make sure it went on to Ukraine that night, but that FedEx is closed on the weekends in Ukraine and Kramatorsk is very far from Kiev.  
Yes, I know how far Kramatorsk is from Kiev.  I have been there.  I have driven 12 hours at 125 miles an hour from Kiev through Kramatorsk on my way to Donetsk.  I KNOW HOW FAR AWAY THAT IS!

So what is going to happen?

Well, subsequent calmer calls betwixt myself and Fedex as well as emails with my facilitator has the package being held in Kiev for Masha to pick up there.  She needs it in Kiev to submit to the SDA/DAP anyway.  
We believe it really will be submitted on the 20th, but we will have to wait until Thursday to find out for sure.  

stay tuned...

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Awesome news!

I awoke this morning to the most beautiful message.  (yes, if you are on a path similar to mine, you will find that you go to bed with your phone next to you so that you can check email messages before your feet ever hit the floor.)

I just talked to the director Vladimir. He said he has talked to the kids and they said YES. they can't wait to become the part of your family. 
This is all I can say, because he is not very talkative. I also informed him, that you will probably come sometime in October\November. He said he will let the kids know.

I don't know that my feet ever hit the ground after that.  I have floated all day.  My heart is full of joy.

They said YES.  

They can't wait to become a part of my family!

Oh, how they already are.  

Just thought you'd like to know this too.

Thursday, September 6, 2012


I received word yesterday that my i171h was approved on September 1!  I should have it any day.  As soon as it is in my hot little hands, I will get the proper state seals and send the rest of my dossier to my facilitator.

Although I had hoped to at least gone to get my kids, if not home by now, I have adjusted my expectations and am pinning hope on sometime in October to travel to get my family.  Only God knows and while I like to plan, I recognize this is all in His hands and submit to his time frame.

Speaking of submission, the closer we get to making their adoption into our family a reality, the more I become aware that our lives are going to change- big time.
I think about each precious child entrusted to me so far and how I have been refined by their addition.  This refining process is on-going.  God is not done with each change and constant adjustments are being made.  Some I welcome and some I am more resistant to.  This is when the heat gets turned up on me and my kids.  They are being refined too.  It is layers of refinement.  Their resistance to refinement creates the climate into which I am thrust so that more of me can be pealed away so that more of HIM can shine through.

I get dizzy just thinking about it.

I can't help but think that God granting me 4 children at once is setting up for serious change, a kind of
"Extreme makeover- HEART edition" so to speak.

Oh Lord, drown out the whispers of doubt and fear and worldly conformity that satan uses to dissuade us from being transformed into your likeness. Fill my ears, my heart with the sound of Your name...