Saturday, August 18, 2012

What are your three words?

I can't believe the summer is about to end and the school year is gearing up.  We've already started with all of the school choir camps have already begun and soccer (x2) has been in full force for a couple of weeks now.  I'm always on the run, sometimes I think I'm going crazy,  but I must admit that I absolutely love watching my kids enjoy what they do in each of their activities!  With school starting...that means I also head back to work... with mixed emotions.  Don't get me wrong, I do love my job..all the incredible kids that I get to work with and the amazing staff too.  However I'll miss the slow pace of summertime and getting to spend more time with my children :)

Our first task of the school year (taken off the TV show Good Morning America) was to come up with "My Three Words".  Three words that describe attitude...everything about me.  Anyone who is around me long enough knows the one thing I always say..."It's All Good".  Could those be my three words?  It's sounds like me, my feelings & my attitude.  Then after thinking about it...I decided those are three good words, but there's more to me.  Then it came to me... "Blessed Beyond Belief"... that really sums it up so much more!  To start with I am so truly blessed with such an amazing parents, my brother, my husband of almost 17 years and our 5 children.  Not to mention my extended family... my grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, in-laws and everyone else.  What about my best friend of 28 years (yes, we met our freshman year of high school). So many friends to mention...those I see often and those I haven't seen in years...each and every one of them are a blessing to me!  Most importantly, I am blessed to know, love and worship the one true God. I know God has a plan for our family.  He has lead our family down a path called is a long journey with lots of waiting and wondering.  We know it will all happen in His timing and at the end of the journey we will be blessed to call Michael & Madison our children.  So, yes... Blessed Beyond Belief are my three words!

To catch everyone up, here is a glimpse of how our school year ended, how our summer went and how our school year begins again:

FHS Pure Elegance at The Grand Ole Opry

One Girl Revelotion
Show Choir Nationals Grand Champions!

Haley's Last Band Concert

Pep Talk before game time (Freshman Team)
First High School Soccer Game
Nick- playing drums in 6th grade band
Soccer Tournament- on the field
Division Champions!
Haley ran the Jenny Evans 5K
They took pictures of themselves :)
We hung out at Myrtle Beach

We went to the Reds Game...yes every picture is of Zack Cozart

We played Putt-Putt
We went to visit the kids in Haiti

The kids already have him dressed in Red's attire
Took them pictures of the family waiting at home for them
We simply enjoyed our time together

Friday, August 10, 2012

We've been Published!!

We've crossed another hurdle!  Wanted to give you a little background of what we've accomplished lately and what the next step is for us :)

With the outdated 1974 law in Haiti, there are 3 requirements that you must meet in order to be permitted to adopt from Haiti:  1- Must not have biological children  2- Must be at least 35 years old  3- Must be married for 10 years.   If you don't meet these 3 requirements then the Haitian President must 'sign off' on our adoption file in order to continue.  Without his signature, then we can't adopt from Haiti...period.  Well, as you know we have 3 children...who are anxiously waiting for their brother & sister to come home... so we fall into the category of needing "Presidential Dispensation".   Well...we exited IBESR (the Haitian Court) on May 28th with Presidential Dispensation!!  However, before we could move forward the Dispensation had to be published in the Haitian Legal Newspaper.  On July 27th (Nick's Birthday) we found out that it was published!!  It's been approved and we can move forward!  It took two months, but it's another step forward...another hurdle crossed :)

Where do we go from here...our next step is to enter 'Parquet'.  Below is a list of steps that occur while in Parquet (copied from All Blessing International Adoption Agency).

Parquet Court
The 'step' we refer to as Parquet court is actually a very complex series of steps and processes involving multiple offices and repeated trips between them.
  1. Attorney addresses a Request for Judgment to the Chief Justice of Parquet Court
  2. Birth parents are interviewed in Parquet Court
  3. Parquet Court signs off on "approval judgement for adoption
  4. Facilitator takes approval to DGI for stamp of authorization
  5. Back to Parquet for enforcement of the approval judgement
  6. Authorization and redaction from the Civil Registrar Officer for legal Adoption Decree
  7. Verification in parquet of the adoption documents by the Civil Registrar before signing the adoption decree
  8. First Legalization of the Adoption Decree, in Parquet Court
  9. Second Legalization of the Adoption Decree, at the Ministry of Justice
  10. Third Legalization of the Adoption Decree, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  11. Obtain attestation of Adoption Decree from the National Archives
We have heard this step can take anywhere from one to four months.  We haven't heard if we have "entered" Parquet yet or not.  It has been 2 weeks since we received word that we had been published and that we could move forward.  We hope we have entered & they just haven't emailed us to let us know...that does happen...several families were not notified that they had entered until they received the email saying they had exited.  I would love for that surprise!  So, at the end of this stage (as we understand it) we will have an adoption decree...which means the adoption is legal in Haiti!  The kids will have our last name...they will be OURS!!!

In the meantime, you know what we are doing...waiting!!!  We wait for the next email that tells us we have moved forward again.  There seems to be a lot of movement in the adoptions of friends we have made during this journey, so we hope to hear good news soon. Thanks for staying with us along this long journey...we will keep you posted when we hear that we've crossed another hurdle :)