Friday, March 30, 2012

Taipei 101

Posted by Angie at 7:05 AM 3 comments
Lately, I have been doing a lot of dreaming about our trip to Taiwan.  While our number one priority will be loving on and bonding with our child, we also hope to enjoy some of the cultural experiences of the country while we are there!  One that we are extremely excited about is the Taipei 101 tower.  Over 1,600 feet tall, this building is a treasured skyscraper of Taiwan.  It has 101 above-ground floors and was the tallest tower in the world from 2004-2010.  It also has one of the world's fastest elevators, going up 84 floors in 37 seconds!  I can't wait...my wary-of-heights-husband, however, is not quite as thrilled as me.  

For my fellow families adopting from Taiwan (or those who are planning a vacation), here is a great website with all sorts of tips for visiting the tower.

But for now, let's enjoy a virtual vacation, shall we?
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Happy Friday!

Much love,
Future Mama

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

WOW: Adoption Cravings?

Posted by Angie at 7:02 AM 2 comments
{Definition: WOW Wednesday.  Also known as Words of Wisdom Wednesdays.  This is a post which begs invites you to SHARE your wisdom with first time mamas...like me!}

Haven't had one of these posts for awhile!  But, it is Wednesday, and I do have a question for my adopting/adoptive mamas out there...so here we go!

Did you get weird cravings during the adoption process?  Are you questioning your sanity as you reach for a strange food item?  Do you want something you usually hate? 

Because I do.  I have the strangest craving for something that I usually despise.

Pickles.
Be still my heart...a brand new jar...
And not just any pickles!  Bread and butter pickles.  And I can't get enough of them these days. 

Is that weird, or what?!

Much love,
Future Mama 

Monday, March 26, 2012

Our Registry!

Posted by Angie at 7:25 AM 6 comments
Our exciting news about the biometrics appointment interrupted my scheduled "trip update" posts last week!  Time to get back to business,  because I have one more little baby update that I just have to blog about...we set up our registry!


I went back and forth about setting up a registry.  People have been so wonderful, supporting us with donations for our adoption and our paperwork, that part of me felt like setting up a registry would be greedy.  We are so blessed and I think I can do wonders setting up a nursery with garage sale finds and craigslist purchases, I think!  But after being asked by multiple people if we had one, and on the advice of my mother (who pointed out that my grandparents and relatives who lived many miles from us would appreciate a registry), we decided to set one up at Target.  This is our first child, after all, so if anything it was just one little way to remind us that the paperwork, the worry, and the waiting was actually leading to something...a baby who needs a car seat, bath toys, and a video camera (well...his or her parents' need a video camera to document all those embarrassing moments for future significant others)!!

We still haven't announced our adoption to our places of employment, and don't plan to until after a referral, so registering in our home town would have been a bit risky.  While I have been up and down those baby aisles more times that I can count, it's a little easier to say "oh, I'm shopping for a friend" when you run into someone you know.  Can't really say that when you have a registry gun in your hand ;-)  So, one night on our business trip/getaway we went ahead and set up the registry!

And let me tell you, I was excited.  Are we really going to be parents??
Holding the "new mommy" welcome bag they give you

Future Papa with his registry gun...do all men love those things or what?!
Our registry certainly isn't complete, but it's enough to get us started and excited.  Is this the week we get a referral so I can start picking out pink or blue?

Much love,
Future Mama

Friday, March 23, 2012

Biometrics, Check!

Posted by Angie at 11:49 AM 10 comments
Today, my husband and I completed our United States Central Immigrations Services Department (USCIS) biometrics appointment!  What does this mean?  Well, after filing our  I-600A (Application for Advance Processing of Orphan Petition), which I talked about here, we waited about three weeks and received our appointment for biometrics, which is a fancy word for fingerprints.  Our appointment wasn't supposed to be until April 10th, but we had been told by other adoptive parents that if you go early, smile big, and they aren't busy, sometimes they will let you complete the appointment early.

Well, the center for our appointment is in our state's capital (as most are), and today Future Papa had to go there for work.  So, I finagled my schedule so I could come along and early this morning we put on our friendly smiles and prepared to beg our way into the office.

Let me just say, I am usually a person who likes to go by the book.  If I have an appointment on a certain day, by golly, then I will be at that appointment on that day, 15 minutes early, ready to go.  It was really tough for me to do this and I felt so nervous.  When the security guard sent us away from the door because I was carrying a purse (no bags allowed!) I was certain they would take one look at our appointment date and send us away.

But they didn't!  They didn't even mention our date!  And, about 30 minutes later, Future Papa and I walked out, the process complete.  WOO HOO!  Now we wait for our case worker to get the fingerprints and evaluate our file for the next piece of paperwork.  We will either receive a Form I-171H, Notice of Favorable Determination Concerning Application for Advanced Processing of Orphan Petition (which is what we WANT) or a Form I-797, Notice of Action...which means they need something else.

Another quick tip: if you are able to complete your appointment early, like we did, you should call or e-mail USCIS to let them know you did so, so your case worker knows to check for your information earlier.

I know this seems like way TMI (too much information) for non-adoptive parents, but for those in the process, I hope this is helpful as you navigate through this journey!

And for us, it is another step complete, another check on the to-do list.  That, my friends, is a good feeling.  Because as soon as we get a referral for one of these, we want to be ready to go!

(all pictures below from His Hands' Facebook Page)



Much love,
Future Mama

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Lighting a Candle

Posted by Angie at 7:15 AM 3 comments
While most of last week's trip was for work, Future Papa and I did mange to squeeze in a little fun!  On our way, we explored New Orleans for the afternoon.  What a neat town!  We visited the Saint Louis Cathedral.

It was as beautiful on the inside as it was on the outside.  Near the altar we lit a candle for our future baby and his or her birth mother, stopping to say a special little prayer just for them.

I also ate enough beignets for the three of us ;-)

As we walked around that beautiful day, I reflected often on our flickering candle, and wondered...has our baby been born?

Much love,
Future Mama

Monday, March 19, 2012

Home Sweet Home

Posted by Angie at 6:12 PM 1 comments
Home sweet home!

We got in late last night and I have quite a few fun updates to give.
(not a referral, unfortunately, but some other fun baby-related adventures to share)

But for now, you'll have to wait in suspense!  
I just got off work and need to jog the dog, unpack the bags, do some laundry, and get excited because a new Castle is on tonight.

Here's a teaser from our trip.
This is our first beautiful stop...where we had a picnic break from driving!
(saving money by packing a lunch looks good here, doesn't it?!)


Much love,
Future Mama

Friday, March 9, 2012

Vacation

Posted by Angie at 7:03 AM 3 comments
Future Papa and I are taking a little trip!  Or, rather, I am going on a business trip and Future Papa is joining me for the fun!  To fully enjoy it and recharge, I'll be taking this upcoming week off blogging.  While my 9-5 work schedule should keep us away from bears and caves, but I'll still try to get some good pictures and see what kind of other adventures we can get ourselves into...
From our last trip
Much love,
Future Mama

Monday, March 5, 2012

Free Compliments

Posted by Angie at 7:50 AM 1 comments
I saw this and just had to share.  Are you in need of a compliment today?
{Free Printable available here}

Not much going on in our neck of the woods.  My students took a midterm test Friday so I will soon be grading, which will go a little like this old post (still love those cartoons).  Our I-600a is in the mail, woo hoo!  We are currently working on a grant application.  I check my e-mail a dozen times a day.  Happy Monday!

Much love,
Future Mama

Thursday, March 1, 2012

February Swap

Posted by Angie at 7:02 AM 1 comments
Friends for Adoption is a "buddy system" that links adopting families together so that they can encourage each other through the twists and turns of the process.  Each month, you and your Friend send and receive encouragements (with a $15.00 limit) in the mail.  This post is about my gift to Brooke.  Even though my husband and I are saving up for our own adoption, we believe we should support others financially, with prayer, and with encouragement as we are able.  Find out more about Friends for Adoption, including how to sign up, here

Wow, what a month Brooke has had!  A month ago today we were praying and dreaming.  Now, she is a mother with a beautiful baby girl!  Her blog has all the details. 


So what do you give a girl who has received the best gift of all?  Well, I had something made...but it was delivered to her home, so it will be waiting for them when they get home from the hospital and will count as the March swap! 

So for February, my mom was a sweetheart and visited Brooke in the hospital!  As you may remember, Brooke's baby was born in my hometown.  My mom went by earlier this month to give Brooke a couple little pink baby outfits and spread a little cheer!  Unfortunately, I don't have any pictures, but that is what we are counting as the "February Swap."  My mom had a wonderful time!  As you can imagine, she loved buying pink ;-)

Brooke sent me the most adorable bookmark that says "Aunt" on it.  As you can imagine, it made me a little teary!  

So, this post is a reminder to all of you involved in Friends for Adoption...it's now March!  Which means you have 2 weeks to get your encouraging gift/letter/package of smiles ($15 or less) in the mail to your Friend!   Wow...March...will this be the month we get our own referral?

Much love,
Future Mama
 
Want to catch up on our past swaps?  Need some gift ideas?  Here's the July's swap, August swap, September swap, October Swap,  November Swap, December Swap, and January swap!
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