home study

Since the last time I posted, we have made some good adoption progress!  We sent our preliminary home study documents to our agency, attended our first round of adoptive parent training classes, and we have started working on our dossier (pronounced dos-ee-ey).  The dossier is a huge packet of documents that basically tells our story in paperwork form.  It includes – certified copies of our birth and marriage certificates, an employment verification letter for Andrew’s job, health physicals for Andrew and I, copies of our passports, criminal background reports, an application to adopt from Bulgaria, a power of attorney allowing our agency to act on our behalf in Bulgaria, photographs of us and our home, our home study report (written by our social worker), and various other documents.  All of this paperwork must be approved by our agency, notarized, and then sent to our state government to be “apostilled.”  When documents are apostilled, it means that the Secretary of State verifies that the notary who notarized the documents is in fact registered with the state with a current, valid license.

To do list

After everything is apostilled, we will send the packet to our agency for the final review before it is sent to Bulgaria.  In the meantime, our social worker will be visiting our home and compiling our home study report.  The home study will go through US immigration, along with some other documentation, so that we can obtain approval to adopt a child from Bulgaria.

At this point in the process, there isn’t a lot of super exciting news to share.  On our end, it’s a lot of obtaining documents and going here and there to do adoption errands.  We don’t yet have a face or a name for the child we are doing all of this for, but we know it will be worth it!

Ways you can pray for us –

  • We are both pretty nervous about the home study.  Our first visit is February 7, so we’d appreciate your prayers for us!  I don’t know exactly how many visits there will be, but we have to spend several hours with our social worker over the course of the process.
  • Please pray for efficiency for us and the various agencies we are working with to get paperwork moving.  A lot of this process is hurry up and wait, so we are trying to do everything we can on our part to be efficient.

Fundraising update –

  • Our coffee fundraiser has brought in almost $200!  Thank you so much to everyone who has bought coffee or purchased something from my etsy shop! Your continued support is always appreciated as we have pretty constant adoption expenses at this point.  Also, I am supporting another adoptive family this month with a portion of my etsy profits, so your purchases from my etsy shop will be helping TWO adoptions!  I’ll share more about the family I am sponsoring soon!
  • We were very blessed to receive my retirement check from the state of North Carolina (I’m thankful to a friend for telling me this was even an option, since the state doesn’t tell you that money is there when you leave the school system), which covered a huge portion of our first agency fee.  We are now saving toward upcoming fees and expenses.  I’m not sure what fundraisers we might do in the future, but if you have any ideas, I’d love to hear them!

As always, thanks for your love and support!

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Lately, I have gotten a lot of questions about where we are in the adoption process, so here is a quick summary.

So far, we have –

  • Applied and been accepted to our adoption agency, CCAI.
  • Been fingerprinted for the Colorado Bureau of Investigations and the FBI.
  • Sent in background check info for the state of Colorado.
  • Currently completing home study paperwork to begin the home study process.
Fingerprint cards

Fingerprint cards

Background check paperwork

Background check paperwork

What we have coming up –

  • Send in all of our home study paperwork to our agency so we can schedule our home study visits with a social worker.
  • Pay our first large fee to our agency.  The total fee is $4800, but we took the option to split the payment up over a few months.  The first half is due as soon as we can get it in.
  • Getting our Dossier together!  The Dossier is the huge packet of documents that will be sent to the Bulgarian government so we can be matched with our child.  As we begin the home study process, we will start compiling of our Dossier paperwork.  This is a pretty involved process and will take several months to complete.

How you can help –

  • Please pray for us!  The process can be a bit overwhelming (especially the first hurdle of the home study), so we appreciate your prayers so much.  At this point, we don’t know much about the child we are adopting, other than the country, general age, and that he/she will have Down syndrome.  Please be praying for our child, that he/she is safe and being cared for until we can bring him/her home!
  • If you feel led, we’d love for you to participate in one of our fundraisers!  Right now, we are doing a coffee fundraiser through Just Love Coffee. We earn about $5 for every bag sold, so we appreciate your support!  Diana’s etsy shop is also open, and proceeds go into our adoption fund!
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