Friday, April 18, 2008

Has Spring Really Sprung For Good?

It sure has felt like spring with highs in the 60s and maybe in the 70s the past few days. The grass is starting to turn green and some plants have even started growing. After a cold and very snowy winter, we are definitely ready, here in NE Illinois for the weather to warm and for spring to be here to stay.

There has still been no news by USCIS about the new DNA policy for the biological parents of relinquished children. After over 2 weeks, one would think they would make some official announcement. Also, rumors have been rampant about the future of adoption. Many are saying the future looks dim and there's uncertainty about whether there may be a deadline of June 1st; the question is that is that for a referral to be given or for a dossier to be in the country? Our agency has been very good about providing us information, but nothing has been said about the new rumours that have just materialized this week about June 1st. Until I hear something from our agency, I really am not going to worry much about it.

Things have been pretty quiet lately; at least in blogsville. People are just not blogging as much as usual, me included. A lot of the Yahoo groups and message boards discussing Vietnam adoption have been pretty quiet, also. A lot of my blogging buddies and those from the Yahoo groups are taking a little hiatus. I have pretty much unsubscribed at least temporarily from getting any mail from several of the Yahoo groups, except for ones from our agency and local FCV (Families with Children from Vietnam) group and these groups have been quieter than usual or even totally silent.

Last Friday, our agency reported 2 referrals: a 13 month old girl and a 8 1/2 year old boy. Also, another family received I-600 approval and ended up traveling this week with 4 other families to Vietnam, where they were united with their children. One family included one of the Vietnam adoption consultants at our agency, also you can follow Katherine and Drew's blog of their journey to pick up their daughter, Tori. There were no referrals this week though at our agency.

Upon reading this week's agency update, I realize they did mention the June 1st rumour. They are saying that it is merely a rumour and they feel people are confusing referrals with the acceptance of dossiers and that there has not been any statements made by either of the governments. A couple of my blogging buddies have found out their dossier was logged in by Vietnam on April 8th after having been sent and then translated. Their dossier was sent over to Vietnam a little less than a week and a half before ours was, so hopefully we will hear something soon that our was logged in hopefully this past week.

Thanks to everyone who has been praying for us; please continue to do so and also for the future of Vietnam adoptions continuing, as well as for a speed up in the process. Things have been really slowing down, especially in relation to adoptions between Vietnam and the United States, compared to other foreign countries, who work with Vietnam. This post is much longer than I expected; I really haven't written this much in a while.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Before and After

Several of you have been waiting to see my before and after haircut pictures. And although, I believe I liked the before haircut pictures better and will be allowing my hair to grow again, I will post the after picture; although I kind of cringe doing so. Remember this picture is also a self portrait which I took. I may be able to take some pretty good photographs of other things, but the photographs are not very good when I take them of myself. Well here goes nothing.



Next time, I think of cutting my hair short, remind me of either this time or even better the short hair disaster of the late 90's. No photo of this awful event will be posted. It is too horrible to see. The memory of this still haunts me. There's a reason I've almost always had long hair (or at least shoulder-length) and hopefully will be able to continue wearing as long as possible.

This weekend was gorgeous. The temperatures were in the 60s or close to it. Being that it was this warm also in the U.P of Michigan, while we were there was quite a treat. I expected it to be in the 30s and was pleasantly surprised. We didn't do much, but it was nice to get away and just relax. Hopefully spring comes back real soon, so I can pull or dig up some of the stuff, I didn't get to before winter set in.

I'm just feeling a little overloaded with all the adoption-related news that has been going on the past month or so. I have pretty much either unsubscribed or gone no mail from most of the Yahoo groups that I belonged to, except for some from our agency and the Chicago Families with Children from Vietnam group. I'll continue to read the many blogs I've been following, but I may not be posting comments as often, but I am reading and following along.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Good News, Good News and Uncertain News

It is almost our 11 month anniversary on the waiting list and over 15 months since we were approved to adopt from Vietnam, as well as a little over a year since we signed on with our agency. We originally had been going to adopt from China, but that is another story that you have probably already heard and is found on our old blog, Journey to Our Chinese Princess.

I'll start with the uncertain news and end with the good news. As many of you know there was an internal USCIS that was leaked or publicly posted or whatever, by another website. The memo from USCIS (Citizenship & Immigration) said that Vietnamese adoptions would now require DNA testing for all children who were abandoned by there parents. This was posted on April 1st, so many of us were hoping this was some sort of cruel April Fools' joke. It since has been announced to be true by our agency, as well as many others. How this will impact future adoptions is not fully known, but children whose parents gave them up willingly for adoption, will now need to be DNA-tested (both the child and the parent (s)). This will probably lengthen the already lengthen the already long wait between referral and travel. The parents will need to be located and flown to Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City to get tested along with the child. This extra cost will probably be the responsibility of the prospective adoptive parents.

But on to some good news and luckily there is quite a bit to share this week. As of April 2nd, Kevin's and my dossier was sent to Vietnam. It will take several days for our agency representatives in Ho Chi Minh City to receive our dossier, as well as the 11 others that were sent out at the same time. Once it has been received in HCMC, it will be sent out for translation (into Vietnamese) and then will be sent to the DIA (Dept. of International Adoption, I think its called) to be logged in. They expect this process to take a couple weeks. So hopefully, we will hear by the end of the month or sooner that we have been logged in. This is very exciting news, but unfortunately does not mean we are anywhere close to receiving a referral. Just got to stay positive and keep us and the process in prayer.

The other good news was that 2 referrals were received this week, both were infant boys, one was 7 months and the other was 11 months. It has been a couple weeks since any referral was received, so this is news we should all rejoice too for the lucky parents of these little ones. Also, later next week, there will be 4 families flying to Vietnam to adopt their children.

I will be away this weekend in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan visiting Kevin's family, so I will not have any computer access. Last weekend, I also got my haircut, and have a different hairstyle, so next week, I will post before after photographs. Have a great weekend and hopefully, spring will start springing forth very soon.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

April Fools!??!

Yesterday, I received a message that our dossier would be going out on Wednesday. Sounds good? Sure, but Friday, I got an e-mail telling me it would be sent out on Tuesday. Was anyone else from CHI told Tuesday and then it changed to Wednesday?