Friday, February 25, 2011

One Delicious Fundraiser

Just a quick update on our latest fundraiser- a cookbook. I am feverishly proof reading many yummy sounding recipes submitted by family and friends. We have over 150, which is incredible! Thank you all who have submitted. As I sat and proof read for hours today, I just kept getting hungrier and hungrier until I had to get up and get a snack. I have extended the deadline for recipe submission to Sunday. I would love to have everything done tomorrow, but that's being ambitious. So, if you have waited until the last minute possible to submit, or if you are just hearing about this cookbook, you still have time to add a few recipes. Comment on this post or email me for the login and password to submit online. It's super easy. We would love to have any recipes (as long as they are tasty)!

Thanks again. I will keep you posted as to when the books will be available for purchase.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A Small Snapshot

We received an encouraging email from our agency today. It was an in-depth report on Neylan's development, characteristics, and personality. He is doing really well and we can't wait to have him home. Many people have said that this phase of the process is the hardest. The waiting gets more difficult with time. I can fully attest to that. All we have is some info on paper and 4 pictures, but I am falling in love with this kid. My kid!! Unfortunately, we still have a few months to wait to meet him. So, for now, I will try to be happy with the info and pictures that we do have. He better enjoy not having so many pictures now, becuase when he gets to this house, his momma is going to make up for it. There will be a camera out all the time.

So, back to the update. Developmentally, all is good. He is learning to sit on his own. He rolls all over the place, reaches for toys and brings them to his mouth, visually tracks objects, smiles when he makes eye contact, and looks up when his name is called. He is also a good eater and sleeper!!

It was fun to hear about his personality and some of his likes and dislikes.
  • He laughs at music
  • He watches children's TV programs attentively
  • He enjoys deep sleep in a quiet and dark environment (HALLELUJAH!!!)
  • Does not fret before sleeping
  • Likes to take baths
  • Likes to be massaged after baths
  • Is not shy with strangers
  • Makes friends easily when he is played with
  • Likes to be held
Does this personality sound familiar to anyone? For those of you who know Grayson well, it sounds like Neylan and Grayson are two peas from the same pod. Reading over this list brought a lot of joy to our hearts as we realized that our boys have a lot in common already. This is going to be a fun journey.


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Oh Happy Day!!

Well, it's not as exciting as our referral day or the day we will meet Neylan, but since there has been very little happening in our process since we got our referral, Tuesday was a big day. We received our legal paperwork!! It's always fun to come home to find FedEx envelopes at your door. We knew this one was coming, but it was still exciting. This is very important paperwork from Korea that we need to proceed.

 It is the paperwork that tells us that Neylan is officially adoptable and his rights have been severed between he and his birth mom. I'm not sure why, but for some reason, it was a bit difficult for me to see the piece of paper that had his birth mother's name and fingerprint on it, where she had signed this perfect little boy over to be adopted because she was not able to care for him. She is giving us an incredible gift. I hope that she is able to experience the joy of being a mother one day and know that her first son is going to be well taken care of and loved unconditionally.

Basically, we took out the legal paperwork and put it in a different envelope with some other documents and sent it on to the immigration office. We applied for our I600 within this paperwork, which says that we are making a petition to classify this orphan as an immediate relative. It will take 2-4 weeks for this to be approved and then the rest of the process is up to Korea to complete. We are still hopeful to travel in late spring or early summer.

Doesn't Grayson look so excited to bring Neylan home?! He's going to make a great big brother (or bother)!

Monday, February 7, 2011

We're trained parents!

Well kinda! Last week we completed our 8 hour training course that we needed before we travel to pick up our little guy. When we told people we had to go to "parenting classes" we got quite a few comments such as "they really don't think you know how to parent", or "why do you need to go to parenting classes when you already have a kid"? These are not just simple parenting classes for the sake of learning how to raise a child. These are classes designed to prepare us to take on an adopted child and all that that experience brings with it. It was a great class and I think we are better prepared now. It definitely brought up some issues and questions that we had not discussed. There are some really tough issues that adoptive families deal with and knowing how to properly handle those as they arise makes a world of difference to your child. Our social worker made the comment that the minute we agreed to adopt, we became a transracial family. This is something we are completely comfortable with, but know that we will likely have many comments and stares from others as our family will look different than most. We will not all be one color. So we have many things to think about and get prepared for such as:

How will we deal with racial comments directed towards our family or our child?

How much information would we like to share about our child/process and what information should be private to those who like to ask questions?

How will we incorporate other races into our family routines?

How much information will we share with our child about Korea, their culture, and his heritage?

How will we deal with the really tough questions that he will begin to ask about his birth parents and why he was placed for adoption?

How will we handle "family tree" projects at school?

Although, we know that adoption is not the easiest road to navigate, we are embracing our experience and are excited about how our family will soon be changing. We are praying that Neylan adapts quickly to us and our lifestyle and that God gives us guidance and wisdom about how to love him and welcome him into our family. We are so excited that each day we are one day closer to bringing him into his forever family. We still have a lot to learn about how to be a good adoptive parent and in time we will have it figured out (ha ha). I'm really glad we had our "parenting class". We learned a lot and had a few eye-opening moments. Now, I just really need to start reading an adoption book that was recommended. I need to learn more about how to correctly attach and bond. You know, that really big, important piece of this whole process!

Neylan update- We received his well baby check last week. He's doing really well health and development-wise. He weighs 22 lbs at 7.5 months. Grayson finally weighed 22# at 15 months! Wow!! Gotta keep going to the gym, especially since Korean babies are used to being carried in backpack carriers all the time. He is creeping around and is sitting well by himself. Unfortunately, no more pictures.