Friday, August 28, 2009
Well, our dossier arrived safely into the hands of our family coordinator at our adoption agency yesterday afternoon. I was tracking it all day via FedEx! Now it will be reviewed by them and then taken to the U.S. Department of State, and Ethiopia’s Embassy in Washington, D.C. for authentication and certification. They said it should be ready to be shipped to Ethiopia one week from today!
Posted by Joe & Sarah McDaniel at 11:35 AM
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
YAY!!! We received our USCIS approval in the mail today (earlier than expected) which set off the chain of events (crazy!) for our afternoon, ending in FedEx-ing our dossier to our agency! Now they will check it over and then it's off to Ethiopia!!!!! It is just surreal to me right now that we're finally done with the paperwork stage! Unless there's a problem with our dossier, it should be sent over with in a couple of weeks. It was a little scary, and yet such a blessing to be finally mailing everything in!
Also, we had a phone interview with Katelyn's Fund last night - an organization that offers adoption grants. We think the interview went well and they ended it by each of the 5 of them going around and praying for our family. It was hard to hear some because of it being a conference call, but I heard most of it, and it was such a blessing! Here were these 5 people who we've never met, but because we have all been adopted into God's family, we share that common bond. It was such an encouragement to hear them pour out their hearts to God on our behalf - their hearts that truly have a burden for and "get" this ministry of adoption! They will let us know in 3-4 weeks if they will be able to fund any part of our adoption expenses.
And, one of the "little" things - I'll try to condense this - one of the things we had to do this afternoon to tie up the last few loose ends was take this one form to be notarized b/4 we took it to the Sec. of State's office to be certified. So, we stopped at our bank on our way downtown - quick in and out, no problem, right? Turns out (found this out at the Secretary of State's office) that her notary or whatever you call it had been renewed but she put her old date . . . might have been able to work around that, but she also put the wrong county (where she worked instead of where she lived). Had to think on my feet and do several things then - when back to our bank (just happens to be a branch in the same building, right down the hall from the SOS office), then a few blocks down to the Indiana State Public Library to print out a new form, had to get a library card (which was free, thankfully), and then found out that print-outs would cost $0.25 and I literally had 2 pennies in my purse. Called Joe to see if he had $ and fortunately he had a dollar in his wallet. Then went onto my yahoo mail account and couldn't find the email w/ the document attached that I needed. So, I called our family coordinator at our agency, who I had tried to call 2 other times today and got voice mail, and SHE WAS THERE and was able to email me the form right on the spot!! Then we (yes, all 6 of us) walked 2 blocks back to the bank to notarize that form, then back to the SOS office and then as I was walking out, Praise the Lord, I saw that the SOS office actually did their part wrong! They easily fixed it, thankfully. So, in all that, she was there! I even tried calling her back again this afternoon and got her voice mail - but when we needed her, God allowed her to be there, at her desk, ready to take my call!!
Okay, and a puzzle update. We are so thankful that people have begun to sponsor some pieces of our puzzle. We hope to be able to get the sponsored pieces put together in the next few days so we can post a picture of the progress. If you're interested in reading more about this, just click on "The PUZZLE" in the right-hand column.
"Shout joyfully to the LORD, all the earth.
Serve the LORD with gladness;
Come before Him with joyful singing.
Know that the LORD Himself is God;
It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves;
We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
Enter His gates with thanksgiving
And His courts with praise.
Give thanks to Him, bless His name.
For the LORD is good;
His lovingkindness is everlasting
And His faithfulness to all generations."
Posted by Joe & Sarah McDaniel at 4:44 PM
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
First of all, you will notice a picture/link to the right-hand side of this page for "the PUZZLE". This is a well, a . . . hmmm, how do I put this gently . . . okay, I'll just say it, it's a fundraiser! :o) We have prayed and talked and thought and prayed and talked and . . . you get the picture . . . over the idea of fundraisers. We are not comfortable with bombarding anyone and everyone we know and asking them to buy junk that they probably don't even need and would probably be buying purely out of guilt anyway! So, when this idea came across our plate, we found it very interesting.
The PUZZLE is named, I know very creatively ;o), because it is centered around a puzzle. We have purchased a puzzle that we will be putting together for our Ethiopian child(ren). We will put the pieces of the puzzle together only as each piece is sponsored. Those who choose to participate may sponsor one piece, a few, or many. We will then write the name of the sponsor on the back of each piece - what a beautiful memory and testiment to God's love and faithfulness, for us and our child(ren)! If you are interested in finding out more about this opportunity to join is in adoption, just click on the "the PUZZLE" picture.
The sponsorships are not tax deductible. If you are interested in participating with us financially in this adoption but are concerned about tax deduction, we have also qualified for The Eternal Family Fund through our adoption agency. If you choose to donate through this fund, your donation would be tax deductible. However, in order to comply with the law, they say they will try to honor the donor's wishes, but they cannot guarantee that all funds donated in our name will actually go to us. There is also a set amount that we qualify for through this fund. If donations in our name exceeded the specified amount, those funds would belong to the Eternal Family Fund to fund other adoptions. If you are interested in hearing more about this option, please email me and I will gladly send you the information (email@example.com).
We visited USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) today to have our fingerprints taken. Our appointment wasn't for another 10 days, but they allowed us to be seen early!!! They now have all of the information that they need in order to process our immigration form - the final piece of paper needed for our dossier!! It could still be another 6 weeks until we receive that from them, but we're hoping it won't take that long . . . we'll see! Then I went to Kinko's and spent $30 making copies of all of the paperwork - that's a lot of copies!!
Thank you so much for your time in keeping updated on what is happening in our adoption process. And we could never express to you how much we appreciate your continued prayers during this process!!
"Not to us, O LORD, not to us, but to your name give glory,
for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfulness!"
Posted by Joe & Sarah McDaniel at 10:04 PM