Thursday, August 26, 2010

Making Our Way Around Blogland :)

So, I was reading one of my favorite crafty blogs, Make It and Love It, and...what do you know...they are doing a giveaway from Cap Creations, and she featured the Chosen Necklace on the site: http://www.makeit-loveit.com/

If you click on it the adoptive family link, it will take you to this site: http://www.capscreations.com/faqs.htm that has our picture and information.

We are also featured here: http://worthyoftheprize.blogspot.com/2010/08/new-family.html

And we're in Emily Lawrance's album here: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Joplin-MO/Moments-Captured-by-Emily/79461885961?sb=4#!/album.php?aid=241559&id=79461885961

We're famous! ;) Just kidding, but it is kind of cool how these are all intermingled! :)

Hope you're having a blessed week!
Jen

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Adoption Timeline

I have had several people ask the question, "So, when are you going to get your babies?" My reply, "Good question...probably a long time!" Of course, that's the short, non-descriptive answer and if that's good enough for you, you may want to stop reading here! ;) But for those of you who would like details, this post is for you. :)

P.S. One day I'm going to get the timeline on the home page of my blog, along with a button, pages, etc. etc. :)

So, here goes:

This Thursday, we will send our first home study fee along with our Home Study Agreement to CHI.

When they receive the agreement, they will send us a list of all the documents that we need in order to begin the home study. (*We have been frantically getting all of this together, so as soon as we get the list, we should have the documents ready to send in. :))

Once they receive our documents, our social worker will begin our home visits and will write our home study. We will pay the rest of our home study fee and our post-adoption agreement fee at this point.

When we receive our home study, we will send in our I-600A along with our $830 fee to the CIS and will wait for our fingerprint appointments.

Once we have done our fingerprinting, we will wait for our 1-171H and fingerprint approvals.

At this time, we will complete our dossier collection and complete the parenting workshops.

Then, we will send our dossier, our preparation fees, and our authentication fees totalling $4100 to CHI, who will take care of sending them to DC for authentication at which time we will be an official waiting family!!

**This document collection and processing period is supposed to take 3-6 months.

At this point, we will do just what the name suggests...we will wait for our referral. We were told that we should expect to wait 15 months for our referral since we are wanting to adopt two of such a young age.

Once we have received and accepted our referral, we will send in our $10, 735 referral fee.

We will wait approximately 1.5-3 months for our court date and will arrange travel at that time (Travel Expenses=$6,000-8,000).

We will travel to Ethiopia for our court date and to meet our babies at this time (the trip is supposed to last approximately 5 days).

We will then return to the states (without our babies):( and will wait until we can go get them 5-6 weeks later.

We'll travel to Ethiopia, get our babies, return home with them and CELEBRATE!!!!

So, there you go...the long answer! ;)

P.S. Don't forget if you want to help us out and get some really cool gear in the process, you can click http://teamchase4andcounting.blogspot.com/2010/08/application-approved.html :)

I'm leaving you with this last little thought (oh, how I love this boy!)

video

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Let the School Daze Begin

We are off to an amazing start to our school year this year!! Especially considering the "newness" of it all:

A "New" Preschooler

Camden with his "new" preschool teacher, Miss Michelle

A "New" Kindergartner

Melia with her "new" kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Schmidt

A "New" Assistant Principal

Trevor with his 2 biggest fans!

(Yes, we look a little sleepy...it's MUCH earlier than we've been waking up the last couple of months!!)

I have to say, we are covering this school year in some major prayer! Between the four of us, we have the potential to impact so many people for Jesus and (as we tell the kids every morning) "show His love." Our prayer is that our love for Christ is contagious and those who are around us will want to know Him like we do! :)
Love you all!
Jen

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Prayers Covering Us

One more little step complete...we sent in our adoption agreement today. Even though it's just a little thing, it's one step closer to our babies!!

I just thought I'd say a word on prayer through this journey and how the outpouring of prayerful support has been surrounding us on all sides. I have always considered myself a prayer warrior. I love to pray for anyone and everyone. It occurred to me in the last year or two that praying for someone is awesome, praying with someone is even better, but praying over someone about a particularly pressing or hard situation is the BEST!! I love to see how God lifts burdens off shoulders and allows Jesus to carry them when we ask Him!

I also know that people have prayed for me and my family about several things in the past, and I have even seen personal medical miracles (i.e. Camden's vanished hip dysplasia...Praise Jesus!), but I can honestly say that this journey is probably covered in more prayers than any other I've ever been on! For example, in the last two days, I can think of at least 5 people who either texted, E-mailed, called me, or sent me a facebook message to say that they were thinking about us and praying for us. I even had one sweet friend (who I hadn't had a chance to talk to about the adoption) come into my school, up the stairs, into my office to listen to my story and pray with me on the spot! It was awesome and so powerful! *Thanks, Chelle...praying for you too, my friend!

Something else that is amazing is that some of these were people I've never met before. They were friends of friends that had heard about this calling in our hearts and wanted to be obedient in praying for us. Now that's some powerful stuff!

I read a blog post today that scared and energized me all at the same time...
http://itsalmostnaptime.blogspot.com/2010/08/spiritual-attack-for-those-who-adopt.html
I think it's so true, but, honestly, people, we haven't encountered it *YET*, but I'll betcha it's coming! So, to make a long story short,

KEEP EM COMING!!
We SO appreciate them. and need them. and are feeling them. :)
Love you all!
Jen

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Application APPROVED!!

Yep, you read right...we received our phone call from CHI letting us know that our application to adopt from Ethiopia is approved! YEA!! This call actually came sooner than we expected and it was music to our ears. Each little baby step gets us closer to Ethiopia!

I have to be honest, though...along with our excitement is a minor amount of sheer panic about how in the world we are going to pay for this! So, here is fundraiser #1:

The AMAZING ladies at http://www.worthyoftheprize.blogspot.com/ have this amazing ministry and they are sponsoring us to help us get moving on the financial aspect of our adoption journey. If you don't know about their ministry, click on that link and follow them! They are so gracious and generous and are taking several of us families under their wings. There are three ways to help us out and get some really awesome (and inexpensive...right up my alley!) stuff. Here is how it works...

1. Click on the link below and go to their website. Select what you want and E-mail my friend, Mary Jo, at scottandmjsmith@gmail.com. Let her know what you want and I will get it and deliver it to you!! By doing it this way, I can save you shipping! If you live further and still want to help out this way, you can order directly from their website...just be sure to designate that you want the proceeds to go to our family. Here's what we get from your order...50% of the proceeds from every fit band (roughly $5), lanyard (rougly $5) and half loop (roughly $4ish) with the "Chosen Child" fabric as shown below. See how awesome they are?! They are barely covering their costs!!

2. Order one of these super cute shirts (where did they find such cute kids to model these?!). Again, just E-mail Mary Jo at scottandmjsmith@gmail.com, let her know the quantity, size, color, and style (large applique/small applique), along with the country or continent you want (if you don't know, pick Africa! ;)) and she will deliver those to you either by shipping them or through me if you live close. We also get $5 per shirt on these! They are $20 for adult sizes and $15 for child sizes. P.S. This is an "insider" deal...they haven't even released these shirts yet!

3. Order one of these adorable necklaces from Cap Creations. They just happen to be on sale right now and we get $10 per order (just be sure to specify us from the drop-down menu). I love that this necklace represents the chosen child, but also that it represents that each of us is chosen by Christ to be His son or daughter! In addition, she will donate 10% of anything else you purchase from her on-line store if you mention our names! If everyone we know bought some of this jewelry for the most special woman or girl in their lives, we'd have our adoption fully funded!


Please send this to any and all of your friends/family members...especially those with a heart for orphans or for Africa (and those with a lot of money to give! ;)).
In all seriousness, we know that God is going to provide financially for our adoption and we find rest in Him that it will happen in His timing. We are thankful for all of you for supporting us whether it is financially or prayerfully.
Much love,
The Chases
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