Sunday, March 30, 2008

Soon To Be Vietnam-Bound

The dossier that is, not us. The Fed Ex package was re-delivered the same day. I was then able to scan and copy it and send it FedEx the next to CHI. It arrived at CHI on Friday, but unfortunately, it was not able to go out with the shipment of dossiers that afternoon. I did receive an e-mail that it would be reviewed and sent out on Tuesday, which by the way is April 1st (April Fools Day)! I'm already feeling so relieved that I don't have the dossier to worry about anymore. We've finished our part and now it's totally out of our hands.

Another snafu, we had in this process to complete our dossier was when I took everything to be state certified. I had one of the secretaries in my office notarize my employment letter. That sounds simple enough right? Well when I took it to the secretary of State to be state-certified. I was told that it had to be re-notarized, because the stamp she had, had the wrong expiration date on it. Had she not gone on medical leave for a few weeks, I probably would have had her notarize all of my documents and would have had to start over pretty much. Thank goodness, it happened on my employment letter and not Kevin's, that had taken forever to get. Also, thank goodness, it had happened before the office manager took his week-long vacation.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Delivery Problems

When I sent the dossier to The Assistant Stork, I included a return package that was to be sent to the FedEx/Kinkos facility a block away from me down at work. I didn't want it shipped to my home and be susceptible to the weather. When I checked the tracing number soon after I got to work, it was in Chicago and out on the truck to be delivered. About an hour later, I checked and there was a delivery exception listed for an incorrec t address - apartment/suite no. I ran down to Fed Ex/Kinko's and they gave me the Fed Ex toll-free phone number and said they couldn't do anything without the waybill receipt, but to call them. I never had the waybill receipt, it was attached to the packaging I sent for the Assistant Stork to return the dossier to me. So I called the 800 number and they said that usually Fed Ex/Kinko's don't hold package. It also turns out that the Fed Ex/Kinko's had me incorrectly fill out the waybill for address, I should have put Fed Ex/Kinko's and to the attention of "me" instead of just putting my name and their address. But even though, I had put their address, the employees at Fed Ex/Kinko's said they had never even seen a Fed Ex delivery person. They have left a message at the Fed Ex location that delivers the package and that I should call back at noon and that they hopefully will hear back by then. They also said they could not guarentee if another delivery will be made today or tomorrow to get me the package. Aarrgghh!!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

It's on Its Way Back to Chicago

Our dossier was taken to the Vietnamese Embassy last Thursday and the tentative date for pick up was this Wednesday. I decided just to check the Fed Ex tracking number and lo and behold, I discovered that it just left VA and should arrive by 10:30 tomorrow. I never thought it would be here early. If things work out right, we might be able to get it to CHI by Friday. I just have to scan/photocopy the authentication sheet on each of the documents and then after work tomorrow get passport photos taken of us to include in our dossier package. I also have to decide on a photo of us and of the house. There should be some in our file at CHI headquarters, but our adoption consultant said to be on the safe side to include these pictures again. I am so excited. It really feels like we have a good chance on getting a referral even if the MOU is not signed. Now let's just keep hoping and praying that Vietnam will give referrals to everyone, who has a dossier in country, as well as the U.S. doing everything they need to do.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Our dossier arrived yesterday at The Assistant Stork and was brought to the Embassy today with a tentative pick-up date of March 26th. Please pray that nothing is found to be wrong with it and that it is ready then.

Monday, March 17, 2008

D.C. Bound

Our dossier has been safely (hopefully) been sent Fed Ex. It should arrive actually in Stafford, VA at the Assistant Stork's tomorrow around noon. I have to agree with people who said once you send that dossier, it feels like you are sending your baby away to college or his/her first summer camp. It feels like a big part of me is gone , that I took such good care of, even if it was for only a brief time. Now, I'll probably have that darn tracking number memorized in no time, since I'll be checking its progress fatefully until it is delivered to Laura's capable hands. Well, I guess I should get some work donesince there is only 2 and a 1/2 hours left of the work day. IO doubt I'll get a chance to post tonight, but you never know! Good luck to anyone else, who's about to ship off a package to Laura or even directly to the Embassy of Vietnam. What a weird feeling it was to write out that money order to0 the Embassy. At least, I can relax somewhat, but until everything is back in my hands and has been sent to our agency and then logged into Vietnam, I won't be TRULY relaxed!!!

Part 2!

All documents have finally been certified!!!! I will post a more detailed post of my experience when I get a chance. One more step 2 go for now!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Part 1 of Our Dossier is Done!!! Only 2 more parts to go!

We have all of our dossier documents and they have all been notarized; next step is to have them state certified at the Secretary of State. They can only be certified at the offices in Chicago and Springfield; thank goodness I work in downtown Chicago, only about 1/2 a mile or so from the Chicago office. I will take my lunch and get them certified, so hopefully, it will only take an hour.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

40 Tips for an Exceptional, Superb & Powerful Life for 2008!

1. Take a 10-30 minute walk every day. And while you walk, smile. It is the ultimate anti-depressant.

2. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day. Buy a lock if you have to.

3. Buy a DVR, tape your late night shows and get more sleep.

4. When you wake up in the morning complete the following statement, 'My purpose is to __________ today.'

5. Live with the 3 E's -- Energy, Enthusiasm, and Empathy.

6. Watch more movies, play more games and read more books than you did in 2007.

7. Make time to practice meditation, yoga, tai chi, and prayer. They provide us with daily fuel for our busy lives.

8. Spend time with people over the age of 70 & under the age of 6.

9. Dream more while you are awake.

10. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants.

11. Drink green tea and plenty of water. Eat blueberries, wild Alaskan salmon, broccoli, almonds & walnuts.

12. Try to make at least three people smile each day.

13. Clear clutter from your house, your car, your desk and let new and flowing energy into your life.

14. Don't waste your precious energy on gossip, energy vampires, issues of the past, negative thoughts or things you cannot control. Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment.

15. Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn. Problems are simply part of the curriculum that appear and fade away like algebra class but the lessons you learn will last a lifetime.

16. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a college kid with a maxed out charge card.

17. Smile and laugh more. It will keep the energy vampires away.

18. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.

19. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.

20. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

21. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

22. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.

23. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.

24. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.

25. Frame every so-called disaster with these words:
'In five years, will this matter?'

26. Forgive everyone for everything.

27. What other people think of you is none of your business.

28. Time heals almost everything. Give time, time.

29. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.

30. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch.

31. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.

32. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.

33. The best is yet to come.

34. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.

35. Do the right thing!

36. Call your family often. (Or email them to death!!!) Hey, I’m thinkin’ of ya!

37. Each night before you go to bed complete the following statements:
I am thankful for __________. Today I accomplished _________.

38. Remember that you are too blessed to be stressed.

39. Enjoy the ride. Remember this is not Disney World and you certainly don't want a fast pass. You only have one ride through life so make the most of it and enjoy the ride.

40. Please share this to everyone you care about.

During times like this, these are all things that we need to remember!!! For me, this came at just the perfect time!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Sorry if I had any of you worrying about me. In reality, I have been healthy, minus an earache. But for the most part, I've been mainly in a real funk about how long everything has been taking. It has been 10 months since we were added to the waiting list and according to Mindee's blog (she is one place ahead of us on the list), we should be sbout #94. I don't know how many ahead of us only want girls or who want toddlers, instead of babies. Referrals are coming in very slowly, so the soonest may be somewhere near the end of the year and then travel has usually been 4-6 months later, although there have been some who have had to wait much longer. But now that it is March and spting doesn't seem so far away, since the sun is shining more often, I am feeling somewhat more upbeat and happier. The weather is still quite cold, but we have seen a day or two in the 40s and it has been over a week since we had any new snow. It's suppose to be very cold over the next couple days, but a slight warm-up is possible next week. I think maybe even in the 50s, which after this winter sounds almost tropical. Sunday, we start Daylight's saving time, so although we lose an hour of sleep, we will be staying light longer in the evening . It'll be so nice to have more daylight again, after getting off work.

February is always a bad money month with car insurance due and several other big bills. Usually, I have the March work bonus to look forward to and then the April pay raise. But this year they aren't as good as past years and with the adoption, I was really expecting it to help with things. We still have a bonus, but it's just not as generous as any of us were expecting it to be, nor was the pay raise up to the same caliber.. Works has also been extremely busy and hectic and with the bonus/pay raise issue, it's really disappointing and depressing. In the past, the generous bonus was our motivation to work harder, but now that we have and we aren't being rewarded like we have in the past, well need I really say more.

Hopefully, tomorrow we will be getting a positive update from our agency. Hopefully, there will be some referrals to report and other happy news.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

I am alive, but I've been very busy and extremely stressed. I will be back to posting hopefully soon.