Friday, March 11, 2011

Last Post

Yes, this last post is just a reminder that we have now moved over to the new blog at:

Won't you join us over there and continue to follow along our journey? If you still need the password, please email me at

Thursday, March 10, 2011

I just cannot believe it

Everyday we are getting closer. It feels real, but sort of not. I have lived and breathed adoption for 2 years now. It just seems weird that it's actually coming close to happening to us. I have watched it happen so many times to other folks, prayed with them, cried with them. And I knew *one day* it would happen to us.

Someone pinch me. Is it possible I may be meeting my son this time next month? I just don't have anything to compare to what I am feeling right now. Happy, joyful, scared, anxious, fearful, excited. My husband kept asking how excited I was as he walks around with a permagrin on his face these last couple of days. I am very excited, but it just doesn't feel real yet. I lay awake at night and think of him always. I cannot remember now who said it, but someone compared their kiddo to a superstar, like you've been staring at these pictures and all of this stuff for months, what do you do when you finally meet them? I mean, what would Reece do if she met Justin Bie*er? Sorry, I'm all over the place today and I have no idea how to put this all in words!!!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Yup, your reading the right blog, EP Approval!!!!

On that day when I thought I could not bear the "no news" wait anymore. When I was literally outside sweeping leaves with a broom to keep myself busy (no kidding, ask my husband who was watching me like I was crazy outside our living room window), we finally get the email we've been praying so hard for....EP APPROVAL!!!

So your thinking, great, now what? Well more waiting of course! You didn't think it would be that quick did you?! Here is the breakdown of what still needs to happen:

Embassy Appearance: Where he will get his adorable visa photo done. Could happen this week, but by next week for sure.

Visa Physical: This is done at an outside hospital. They do these in batches every week. At the beginning of the year these were being done very quickly, but lately it's taken some groups a month to get an appointment. Let's pray that we get an appointment before a month! Our agency seems to think 3 weeks at the most for this. I hope she's her normal pessimestic self :-) She will let us know as soon as we get our appointment and I will pass along that good news!

Visa Interview: For the life of me I cannot imagine what kind of interview they do for a one year old. I think it's just something that needs to be done in person to make sure everything is in order. This is something they track at USCIS, so I hope they are getting ready for my weekly phone calls to see if this has happened yet :-)

Once this is all together, then we will get the all important travel call!! We will then have 10 days to book our travel and hotel and get our butts in gear to go get our son (not that I haven't been packed up since February)! Our agency is tellling us 4-5 weeks until travel call. I'm continuing to pray for travel call this month, but I am just excited that I can finally say with confidence that I will see my son next month! :-)

Also, just another reminder that I will be no longer posting to this blog after Friday. If you want to continue along our journey, please move over to:

All of our posts will be password protected, so please email me or leave a comment if you would like the password to follow along!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

When I get down

I get really down. It's no mystery that this adoption has definitely taken it's toll on my mood. I checked my email last night and was completely trying to hold my screams down when I saw an email from our agency. "This is it! This is the EP approval email we have been waiting for so long! Asher is on his way to coming home!" I collected myself enough to manage to click the email.

Imagine the drop in my soul when I realize they are telling me that our fingerprints expire on April 11th (do not even get me started on why fingerprints expire) and they are suggesting that we get these redone because we may not be traveling by then. Not traveling by April 11th. I just read those words over and over again. And I cried. Again. I cannot fathom not having our travel call by April 11th. I have no idea what is taking so long with this batch of EP's we are in. We had our hopes so high for traveling in March and realistically that is probably not going to happen. I am trying to be positive. Reading my scripture for support. Putting on my smiley face. It's all about being graceful in the wait. Understanding that it WILL happen. That I have no control over this. But then I have to remind myself that it's ok to be sad and disappointed about it. It doesn't mean that I don't believe any less. It doesn't mean that I am throwing a pity party for myself. I don't have to beat myself up for being sad. It's ok.

So, I am letting myself feel this disappointment so that I can just move on. Point blank, this sucks. Yes, I am thankful that Asher is being taken care of. Yes, I am thankful for how far we've come. Yes, I know that there is an end in sight. But today, I'm just morning my boy. It physically hurts that we are not together (migraine from hell last night).

Just so you know, I'm feeling better today and praying for a more positive week next week. I was told 5 weeks at the most for EP approval and Monday will be 5 weeks of waiting for us. It's got to happen next week. I'm taking hope in that.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Price drop!!

As ladies, don't we just love those two words? No seriously. I do. Things have changed a lot around here the last few years, and for the better I might add in the finance department. We started our family very young (as in I graduated from college almost 5 months preggers with Kyleigh), so we never really had a "nest" built up you wouldn't say. Tack on 3 different student loans, car payment, mortgage, credit cards, groceries, utilities, etc. and it was a recipe for disaster. We spent a couple of really hard years just floating through all of it. But, we made it through and live to tell the tale. Once I got into a decent paying job, things seemed to level out a bit, but it doesn't mean we were any better really with being responsible with our money, we just had more of it to spend. Again, we would put things on our credit card or eat out just because or I would feel the need to "treat" myself to that pedicure every week or so. When I started working from home, things changed a bit and seriously took a turn when I started toying with the idea of quitting my job and staying at home.

I took out my highlighter one month and just went through and organized our expenses for a month and I couldn't believe how much we spent on just eating out alone. Yes, I worked late a lot and was so overwhelmed at that time with everything going on and eating out was SO much easier, but still. You just get a bad feeling in the pit of your stomach when you sit and break things out like that. It's so easy with debit cards to not really see where your money is going until you get that monthly statement. A change was going to have to be in order if I was seriously considering quitting my job and staying at home. We had already begun a year ago to only use our credit card for online purchases or emergencies and cut up any other ones we still had. We cut out eating lunches out. Cut out eating dinners out 3-4 nights a week. Cut out shopping at the mall just because and really started looking for deals.

It started out as a tool to see if our family could afford one income, but it became so much more. I just couldn't believe how much money we wasted before we started using coupons and shopping smarter. I swear I would not be able to sleep at night if we spent money like we did back then! I feel guilty for buying anything without a coupon now! Of course you can take it too far and get obsessed with couponing (there are some crazy folks out there online!), but for the most part, we have saved an incredible amount of money on everything from groceries to clothes to toiletries and diapers. In fact, I've not paid full price for any pack of diapers we have for Asher and after over 18 months of buying diapers, we are pretty stocked up!

I wanted to share a few tools I use with everyone. Below are just a few sites that I check out for coupons and deals. Depending upon what stores are in your area, you might find a site that works for you! We also get a Sunday paper and have signed up for several coupon sites (groupon, etc.) which lets us get deals for half price! Hope you guys enjoy!!!

I have signed up for email deals on the following sites:

If you have a favorite restaurant or clothing store, sign up for their emails. I regularly get coupons for Old Navy, Gap, Children's Place, Kohl's and restaurants like Friday's, Quiznos, Ruby Tuesdays, etc. I want to say at least once a week I get a coupon from each of these places!

I also do some online survey taking. You are in no way going to get rich from this, but the points sure come in handy around Christmas....and when you have to re-buy all of your baby stuff years later! We haven't paid full price for any baby items we had to buy for Asher! I rack up the points from survey taking and cash them in for gift cards for Amazon, etc. Several Christmas presents were bought this way this past Christmas and I'm hoping between these and the twice a year toy mark down at Target (look for this in January and marked down 30-75% off!!), our Christmas will be paid for in full and at half price :-)

So pretty much now we either buy it on sale, with coupon, on sale with coupon (which we LOVE) or we just don't buy it at all. I've learned to be patient and wait things out (oh the patience I've had to learn these last couple of years!). Hope these sites help some of you guys out and happy deal hunting! I know my coupons for Old Navy are about to be used to get some much needed Spring clothing around here :-)

Sunday, February 27, 2011

An ongoing reminder

So I am incredibly excited to see some warm weather this way. I am one of those folks that their mood is affected by the weather and just this weekend has made the biggest difference to be out in the sunshine. It brings a much needed smile to my face. I mean, I smile all of the time...and I have plenty to smile about.

I have two beautiful daughters to call my own, a seriously wonderful husband, shelter and plenty of food, great friends and family. Our family is healthy and all of our needs are met. The only thing missing now is our son. I smile everyday because I feel so thankful and sometimes overwhelmed by all of it.

It's taken me a lot to understand that it's OK for me to be happy and to let myself feel joy. Sometimes I would feel guilty and sorrowful about other folk's situations and not allow myself to feel happy or sometimes I would let old ghosts from the past haunt how I felt about things. And the's so much easier than I thought it would be to really focus on the negative (meaning we still don't have Asher home and have absolutely no answer or information as to when that might happen) than to remember all of the positives of this.

I've learned a lot of lessons and sadly I'm so stubborn I've learned most of them the hard way. As much as this hurts everyday to not have my son home, I'm ultimately thankful for the wait. At some point, I quit putting on my "poker face" of everything being OK and realized that it really was. All of this wait is for a purpose. Maybe mine, maybe Asher's, maybe someone else's. But either way, I know I've learned so much about how my mental outlook affects my life, about how I depend on my husband and my Savior for support, about how I portray my situation to others.

I feel like I've posted on this so many times, but this is a process if I'm being honest here. I've learned adoption is and just being a Christian is. I do not wake up every morning always with unfailing confidence. I continue to make mistakes even when I am trying my best. I need constant reminders that I do not need to depend (or stalk!) information or updates from others or be anxious about how long things are taking. I cannot worry about how or why things have slowed down. Worrying gets me nowhere. What I can do is to remind myself that even though I have no information and I feel completely out of control here, that is OK. It's all being taken care of. The only thing I need to do is be still and wait and have patience in the good things that are in store. I need to push out those old feelings of anxiety, fear, stress. I need to replace them with joyful expectation and faith. I need to get off of the Holt boards and go play in the dirt with my kids. I need to let it go and have real peace with it. I really needed this reminder after last week and I continue to pray for all of my adoption buddies that are waiting on referrals, I-600 approvals, EP approvals and travel calls. I hope we all see movement this week, but if not, that we find peace in whatever comes.

Friday, February 25, 2011

I am going private in the next two weeks...

We have come so far in this adoption journey and I want to be able to share pictures and updates, so in two weeks on March 11th I will release a new blog. Everyone will be able to access the blog, but you will need our password to view the posts as they will be protected. I have left information such as Asher's timeline and our basic family information for everyone to see as I found viewing other blogs during this adoption process has been incredibly helpful. It's bittersweet to make everything private, but I know we need to protect Asher's privacy until he is an official US citizen!

The reason I am posting this now is I am going to compile a list of folks and their email addresses so I can send you the new blog address and password to view. I have made so many great friends through this process along with so many of my already wonderful friends and I hope that you all will continue to follow us along this journey!

On adoption progress note...I wish I had EP approval news to share, but I don't. It's been a really disappointing week between Asher's birthday and no EP approval, but we are staying strong in knowing that it's all in God's hands and we will be united with our son soon!!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Working through the emotions

So, today is hard. There is nothing soft and easy about it. Today my friends is Asher's first birthday. And he is turning one without us.

When we started this process, we thought for sure we would have our son/daughter home by their first birthday. God has other plans. I was having lunch with a fellow adoption buddy I met through church on Friday and we were talking about our timing versus God's timing. I would have had this happen so many times already, but every time that "date" in my head passes without anything to show for it I am sad yes, but there is always a reason for the wait. Maybe it was a heart change that needed to happen or maybe a connection that needed to be made or something that needed to happen for Asher and his Foster Family. Sometimes I know what these reasons are and sometimes the time passes and I don't have a clue.

While I have swallowed back a couple of tears today (and last night), I'm trying to stay focused that my time lines aren't always right. Seriously, so far my plans have paled in comparison. I am sad we didn't get to share this special time with him. I wish he was home. But I know his foster family has given him a wonderful celebration and I just hope they took bunches of pictures!!!

We did celebrate last night by going out for Korean and it was delish! We had dumplings, galbi (Korean marinated short ribs), bulgogi (marinated *spicy* chicken), bunches of side dishes I had no clue what their names were and bibimbap (which is a vegetable, beef and rice mixture with spicy red soybean mixture). We were worried if the girls would like it, but they loved it! Our nice waitress even brought more of one of the mystery side dishes because Reece literally ate the entire thing :-)

I really tried not to cry, but I have to admit I got teary eyed on the way home. Of course what comes on the radio but that darn "While I'm waiting" song to just make matters even worse! We got a birthday cake for Asher and sang him Happy Birthday and the girls' blew out his candle for him. I couldn't get through the song without tearing up, so I "conveniently" had something to clean up while they were doing this :-(

While I am still sad today, I am at peace. This is out of my hands and has been from the beginning. I'm praying for peace and understanding. I'm praying that we hear something tomorrow about EP approvals. If we can get our EP approval this month, there is a great chance we will travel in March. I hope we get some great news for Asher's birthday week tomorrow!!!!!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Tonight while our family is sleeping

Korea is fast at work. The 14 hour time difference right now is nice because they are always a day ahead, so it feels like I get news faster.

We found out on Monday that the EP group ahead of us got their approval. Yup, we are next in line! I'm praying, hoping, wishing, begging for our approval this week! The holiday at the beginning of the month slowed things down a bit, but I really hope they are back to cranking things out. I'm still holding onto hope that I will open my email on Friday or Monday and see those wonderful "Your EP has been approved" words. I've been taking comfort in knowing that while I sleep, so much is happening there....because let's be honest here, I'm looking for anything I can to hold onto during this wait :-)

After EP approval, then Asher will have his Embassy Appearance, Visa Physical and Visa Interview before he will be completely ready for travel. I'm still trying to figure out the process for those things over there. I know some agencies will do these before EP approval is even given, but I'm not sure about Holt. I'm thinking everything is done after EP approval. And I've been told that they batch the physicals as well, so I'm not sure about that and we may have to wait until they do another batch. I'm praying that some of this stuff has already been done and that we will not run into anymore bumps in the road bringing this little guy home! After EP approval, we are looking at 4/5 weeks until travel call. Fingers crossed it's sooner!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

I'm going private soon!

So I just recently found out that I can show off all of the pictures I want as long as my blog is private...what am I waiting for! I am trying now to figure out how to set this darn thing up or if I need to create a new one all together (if anyone has any advice on this I would greatly appreciate it!!!), so it will be another week or two I'm sure, but I wanted to give everyone a heads up.

I have really enjoyed being able to openly follow other blogs and make all of the friendships I have through them, but I don't want to wait another 6 months after Asher is home to post his pictures! I will give everyone notice if you want to continue to follow and hopefully will have this all set up before we get our travel call :-)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

EP Submission!!!!

So I finally heard back from my agency.....

First of all, Asher is doing much better, which puts my heart at ease. I felt so unsettled not knowing what was going on. So thankful again for such a wonderful foster family!!

Secondly, they sent 3 absolutely adorable pictures of Asher! I cannot believe how big he has gotten. He truly looks like a toddler now (his birthday is coming up on the 21st). I'm so thankful to have these pictures. They make the wait not feel so horrible.

Thirdly, our EP submission has already happened! We figured it would be later this month, but thankfully it happened on January 31st! Korea was fast moving in January with these EP submissions and approvals, but with the new year holiday last week, it seems things have slowed back down. There is one EP set in front of us waiting for approval. I'm praying they get their approval this week and we get our approval next week!

If we can get our EP approval in the next 2 weeks, there is a good chance we will still get to travel next month. There are still a couple of steps after EP approval (visa interview, embassy appearance, etc.) that need to happen, but normally these are wrapped up within the month. Holt does batch the physicals for these kiddos, so that might slow us up if we miss being included in a batch, but hopefully most of the large road blocks are out of the way now.

It's crazy to think this time next month we might be on a plane to go get our son! Thanks everyone so much for all of your thoughts and prayers!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Reece made me think about a bigger bed

So I've had sleep a lot on my mind in anticipation of Asher coming. I'm mentally trying to prepare myself for the nights without sleep again...and my husband, who doesn't seem to be worried about it so much. Maybe because you could put a blow horn to his head at night and he won't move. Let's see how a screaming 1 year old works :-)

Kyleigh has always been pretty good about sleep. She slept through the night pretty early as a baby and we never really had any issues until she was 3. She had a bad dream one night and we let her in our bed...which turned into two nights, get the drift. It took months to get her to sleep back in her own bed alone. She would go to bed and then sneak in our bed in the middle of the night. I am a very light sleeper, so I would usually wake up, but she got very sneaky and more times than not I would wake with her in my back. Luckily now she is awesome about bedtime and goes right to bed promptly at 8:30.

Reece on the other hand has never been a sleeper. Like ever. She gave up naps at 2. Yeah. All those moms that would talk about the stuff they would get done during 3 hour nap times I never had that wonderful notion. She still doesn't sleep. She fights bedtime every night still. We *start* at 8/8:30. Starting earlier doesn't work any better I will add first. We tried earlier and it just means fighting for longer periods of time. It's usually a 40 minute ordeal before she finally gives up and stays in her room. We hear every excuse...I'm hot, I'm thirsty, I'm not tired, I cannot hear my radio, etc. etc. etc. And she's up in the middle of the night too. Yup, sneaks in our bedroom just like Kyleigh did. On average 3 nights out of the week I wake up next to her. She is vocal about not liking sleep. She asked me this weekend if God had to go to sleep and I told her God wasn't like us and really didn't have a bedtime. "well, when I grow up I want to be God then so I don't have to sleep". Yes folks, this is our Reece a roni :-)

So, I know Asher's sleep transition is going to take some time. I'm trying to decide how to tackle things to have a game plan, but I also know it depends greatly on Asher's grieving and also what he is used to. I'm sure we will co-sleep for a while...but I bought a crib with purpose, so I'm hoping in a few months we will be able to transition him over. I think everyone does better when they get a good night's sleep in their *own* bed!!

Any sleep advice or tips to share?

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Fun at Marbles Museum!!

You know, we've been here for 6 months and we hadn't checked out the children's museum, so we decided last weekend as a girl's day out we were going to go! We were there for 6 hours and they had a blast! I'm seriously thinking of getting a family membership, especially to have somewhere to go this summer and with Asher as well to play indoors on rainy days. Here are some pictures from all of our fun :-)

Kyleigh wouldn't come out to perform on stage, but you know Reece will put on a show!

Here I am behind the camera holding my heart watching them set up water play with a sweet
Korean cutie

Reece delivering the pizza she made :-)

Got to love that smile!
Reece working hard cutting her wood
Showing off the mannequins they turned into models

Friday, February 4, 2011

How can I put into words how much I love him?

So my husband rocks. Seriously. This man is a saint. Valentine's is coming up and I am racking my brain trying to think of something to do. This past year he has been incredible, supportive, my best friend, a shoulder to cry on when I needed it and my strength.

You know, every year and every time we have something big happen in our lives, I just cannot imagine loving him more, and yet I do. I think back 13 years ago when we met and I would have never imagined our lives now. And to top it all off, we are going on our first date since September tonight! I'm not normally a huge NBA basketball fan, but Bobby absolutely loves basketball! This will be the 2nd time we will go see King James play (Bobcats v/s Heat), so he is pretty excited. Let's hope that 5 hr energy drink kicks in for that late 3 hour drive home!!!

His mom is coming to stay with the kids tonight and they are completely excited. We are really lucky to have family close to us again. This weekend will likely be a blur as we have two birthday parties on top of everything else and have to get all of these valentines done. And Bobby got Asher's dresser put together and mounted to the wall so guess who gets to wash and put away clothes this weekend? I've never been more excited to do laundry!

Hope you all have a great weekend and prayers for some good news next week!!!!!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

When they are gone...

the house is really quiet. really quiet. Sometimes too quiet and I'd rather hear them fighting even. All that quiet leaves me to my own thoughts. These days that has not been a very good thing with all of the waiting for Asher. Today I wondered how my days will be once Asher is home. How different it will be. No more weekly schedule for cleaning (yes, I am a complete dork and have this).

Chores may fall behind. I'm almost certain laundry will. And I love it. You know why? Because I will be doing more important things. Like getting to know my son. I am incredibly blessed to be able to stay at home with him and I never take that for granted. And as crazy as it's going to be this summer with all of them home, I cannot wait to be home with all of my kids. I'm so happy this year that I can say that instead of saying "I wonder if we will be all together this summer". It's been awesome to think about summer plans and include Asher. Because he will be home this summer. Oh yeah!

It's been a rough week honestly. On Monday I opened my mail expecting to find the usual junk mail and ridiculously high electric bill, but instead there was a document from my agency. It was a hospital report for Asher...dated January 11th. Yup, Monday was February. Seems our little guy is back to his respiratory issues and had to go back to the hospital. I was initially upset that he was sick again...and then upset that we were finding out 3 weeks later....then upset that no one called to tell us or even emailed and just mailed something like that...and then upset that we had no follow up. At all. I don't know how serious it was. I don't know if he's fine now. I.know.nothing.

I didn't call on Monday. I was incredibly upset. I waited until Tuesday to call when I wasn't so emotional to speak to our agency. They apologized for mailing something like that without a call or email and she said she would send an email to Korea and try and find out how he is doing now. Of course I also took this opportunity to ask about EP's, but she said she still didn't know anything and they never contacted her back from an email she said she sent 3 weeks before. I pushed again. Hey, don't judge me. This is my son. We need him home! So, she says she is going to email again. I know with the Lunar New Year, Korea is on holiday the rest of this week, so I am praying we hear something next week.

Please pray that Asher is better. Please pray that we get some good news that his EP has been submitted so we can bring him home hopefully in March before I lose my mind!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Out of the millions of orphans

Asher, God chose YOU to be our son. Sometimes I get caught up in this wait, how long it's been, how far my patience and faith have been stretched. But I am forgetting the most important thing of all.....God is in control. Not me.

As January comes to an end soon, I have to admit it's been the toughest month yet. There have been incredible highs, and lows. I've cried, I've laughed, been mad, happy, thankful and angry all at the same time. I've prayed for understanding, for patience, for peace. The more I pray for these things, the more and more my eyes are opened to certain scriptures that He lays on my heart:

Psalms 68:6: "God sets the lonely in families"

Psalms 27:14: "Wait on the LORD: be of good courage; and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord"

Psalms 68:5: "A father to the fatherless, and a defender of the widows, is God in his holy habitation"

Philippians 4:6: "In nothing be anxious, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be known to God"

2 Samuel 22:33: "God is my strong fortress. He makes my way perfect."

John 16:33: "I have told you these things, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have oppression; but cheer up! I have overcome the world."

Psalms 146:9: "The Lord takes care of those who are in a strange land; he gives help to the widow and the child who has no father"

I've found that I'll say several of these many many times a day. The moment I start to wonder or get upset because we've not heard anything. The moment I feel sad because we will miss his first birthday. The moment I feel so disheartened and out of control. I say these words of truth. These are things that are clearly spoken to us. I do not have to worry about when Asher will be home, because God sets the lonely in families and He is in control. Everyday I wait my faith is straighten in the Lord. God is a father to the fatherless and wants nothing more than Asher to be forever with us. God is on our side. He is working even when we feel like nothing is happening. Even while we sleep. Even while we go about our everyday lives, God is working out Asher's wonderful journey. I do not have to worry. I will continue to pray knowing He hears my prayers. He knows my heart. He sees the end when I cannot. He is watching over Asher. I may not be able to do anything to get him home, but God can, and will. With Him anything is possible. I trust His will. I trust His timing.

Thank you Lord for opening my eyes again to the bigger picture. This wonderful journey we've all been on. Thank you for giving us the boldness to live it out. Thank you for making us wait so that we would have Asher as our son. Thank you for all of the preparations you are working through now. We wait in peace and rejoice in everyday, with news or not, because it brings us closer to our son.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Just a rough week, that's all

I am now able to blog about this past week. boy it was a rough one. Two call. Well, lack there of.

I know, I know...we haven't been waiting as long as some families have for their travel call. Before I even begin this post, I want to say that no matter how long we wait, I am incredibly grateful and thankful for this entire adoption process. I am in no way bitter towards anyone or anything. Just sad really.

So, when speaking to our agency back in December concerning EP's (if you remember from my earlier posts, Korea ran out of EP's-permits that our kiddos need to leave the country and come home-and everyone was *patiently* waiting for January 1st so they could start submitting them again), she told us that Holt prioritizes waiting children (Asher is from Rainbow kids) and she said we should be in that first batch. Our agency doesn't get notification of when or what families are submitted for EP, but I've been following the Holt boards to watch this information. A batch was submitted on the 4th and 11th. I was so excited! There has been 4 or 5 other friends I've made along the way and we were all in the same boat in this waiting process.

So on Tuesday, there was action all over the boards and fac*book of folks getting EP approvals and travel calls! I was so excited! This little boy I've prayed for and love so much would be coming home!! I thought for sure that we were in that group going by what our agency said, so I was literally waiting by my phone. Ready to make that call to our family and friends. Ready to feel that completion after almost 2 years of waiting. Ready to know that we were finally bringing our son home!!!!

Well, as you can guess, no call came. I finally called our agency. To sum it up, they don't really have any information to give. She was pretty sure we were not submitted, and did not give any idea of when we would be. Nothing at all hopeful to go on. At all. When I asked about the first batch situation, she clarified that was "an assumption". Would have been nice to have that clarification as soon as she said it in December since I had been holding onto that conversation this entire time. So, we were not getting a travel call that day, this week, this month, probably not even next month. It's looking more and more like March....or worst April or later.

I'm not going to lie, I cried. A lot. I'm just so emotionally exhausted from all of this. I want him home so badly it physically hurts. Tuesday and Wednesday were very bad days with lots of puffy eyes! But, my crying didn't do anything to change the situation. In reality, we are with Holt and their travel takes much longer than SWS, which is who most of my friends are with. It's not a surprise they got their travel call at all. I decided that instead of having a pity party for myself, I was going to be positive about much as I can!

It sucks that we will not be there by his birthday. I mean, it just does. It sucks for every family to have to wait like this, it doesn't matter how long they have waited or what their situation is. I've said it before, adoption is not for the faint at heart and boy I've learned that lesson over and over again this week. So, I'm just going to be thankful that Asher is with an amazing foster family who is taking great care of him. Thankful he had a good January check up. Thankful in knowing that this wait Does have an end. We Will be in Korea soon. So for now I'm still trying to keep busy and February is turning out to be action packed..and the shortest month of the year thank maybe it will fly by. We still have to get his room straighten up and now I have time to learn some Korean phases (I love you, thank you, etc.) that I really wanted to learn before we traveled.

Thanks everyone for your support this past week and kind words. It's really meant a lot to have such great friends!!!!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Some travel advice?

Nope, they haven't told us we can travel yet (though a girl can wish!!), but in this time of *patient* waiting for our travel call, I'm trying to go ahead and get things together because I know how crazy things will be then!

So, I'm looking for travel advice. I've never booked a flight in my life, so we definitely think it's worth the extra money to get a travel agent for this, but I'm looking for advice for the flight. What is something you suggest for a flight for us and also for Asher? Keep in mind the flight from Korea to Chicago will be 14 hours...yup. Not for the faint at heart! How the heck will I keep him occupied for 14 hours in a seat?? 5 hour energy will be my friend I suspect :-) At least Chicago to Raleigh is only 2 1/2 hrs!

If you've been to Korea, we would love to know must see places. We've gotten a couple of books and read them, but it's always great to hear about other experiences! I figure if I do a little bit each week of packing and planning, then not only will it hopefully keep me occupied, but I will be prepared when the call comes in. Last week I got all of Asher's laundry done (and crib set up and made!) and I have to admit you couldn't wipe the smile off my face folding those sweet little clothes. Ask me again in a few months when I'm up to my eyeballs in laundry for 5 people if I'm smiling while folding!!!

So, we are waiting without really knowing anything right now. Everything on US side is done and all of the final approvals and documents were sent to the Embassy in Seoul last Friday. Now they will sit waiting until the EP (Emigration Permit) is approved. This is where the mystery is. There was such a backlog from last year (all agencies ran out before the year was over because Korea has been decreasing the amount of EP's every year) and I'm sure everyone sent in EP's from all over. We are still praying Asher was submitted last week, but our agency cannot find any of that out to tell us. They said they will only know when it's approved. If it was indeed submitted last week, we could have approval by the end of the month! Travel call usually comes a week or two after that, so we would be there in February by his birthday! If it was not submitted in January, it would be submitted in February and we would be praying to travel in March. I just feel like we will be there by his birthday. I even bought him a birthday shirt to celebrate with him. I'm trying not to get my hopes up, but at the same time I pray everyday and know that what is impossible with man, is certainly possible with God.

The next few weeks will be nail biting! If we don't hear anything by the first week of February, we know we should be in the next batch for EP's. Please pray with us that he has already been submitted and please please feel free to leave any travel advice with kids you have!!!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Dreaming of my baby today

And I cannot seem to think of anything else!

I have a great group of adoptive moms in my area and asked if any of them knew how long it takes to get EP approval once you have submitted. I am hearing back around 4 weeks...6 at the most. Really?? Awesome! That means we actually may have a chance of getting Asher by his birthday (Feb 21st)! Of course I know that every situation is different, but this just made me so excited today! Plus getting the official I-600 approval in the mail today made it even better :-)

I feel like I have so much to do. I am sitting down tomorrow and putting together a to do list to keep me accountable and make me feel better about all of it. I need to go back through some of the places to see and do in Korea, figure out what we need to pack and look at some of the hotels and figure out around what our airfare may be if we travel in February. We have his crib up, but everything else is just laying on the floor. Clothes to wash, baby carriers to figure out, his special bag to head is spinning!