Yes, it’s been a while since our last official blog post. So sorry about that… it’s been busy around here! But we’ll get to that.
Many have been asking us a lot of really good questions, so I thought I would do a Q&A post, and try to bring everyone up to speed in one shot.
Q: You talk a lot about hosting and adoption. Which one are you doing?
A: Good question… it can get confusing. We’re doing BOTH! The beautiful, precious girls are coming this Christmas for 4 weeks as part of a hosting program (just like we did this past summer) under New Horizons for Children. But, our mindset and ultimate hope and goal is to adopt these two sisters and make them a part of our family forever.
Q: When will the girls arrive?
A: The girls (who we are referring to a N & A) are arriving for Christmas hosting on December 15 and will return to Latvia on January 13.
Q: When will you get them to keep?
A: A lot of that depends on a horrible thing called paperwork. We are in the process of jumping through multiple hoops and have at least 2 different countries involved. Our *HOPE* is that we could go get them and bring them home in the spring, but that would be the first of 3 trips we will have to make before the adoption is completed. And anything can happen to delay this, as well.
Q: The money you’re raising right now through t-shirts and donations, is that going for hosting or adoption? Or is it all the same?
A: It’s not the same. While it’s all about the same two girls, it’s two different entities (well, three, really, if you count the agency doing our home-study). Right now, the t-shirts sales and donations via our YouCaring account are going for hosting. (Donations via YouCaring are tax deductible, by the way.) We have about 25% of the money needed so far for hosting. (Total needed is about $6000.) This is the most urgent need, so that’s what we’re focusing on. We have some other events and fundraisers planned, as well, like a garage sale (October 20, in Tyler) and a ThirtyOne Bags party planned (dates yet to be set – but should be able to be done nationwide). Of course we’re also putting our own money into hosting, as well.
On the adoption front, we’ve started our home-study, which is the first step in any adoption. We hope to have this wrapped up by the end of the month… the big thing with that is that we had to be living in the location where we would bring the girls home to. After this past summer, we realized our apartment was way too small and we needed to move. Through a series of events and a number of answered prayers and divine guidance, we ended up buying a house! It’s in a small city outside of Tyler called Whitehouse and we close on October 26th. We plan to move on the 28th/29th, and then 3 days later on November 1 we’ll have our social worker visit for our home-study. That should be the last thing we’ll need to do to finish our home-study, and then we can move on to the next step. (I hope to get another page going to show step-by-step where we are in this process.) Everything for the home-study we’ve been doing out of pocket and savings. To date this has been over $1000. (We’re very thankful for Chris’ awesome job that has allowed us to be able to do this!) Before the end of the year, we’ll be paying out another $4500, and before we buy plane tickets (which could be around $5000) we’ll pay another $6500 or so. As of right now, we have *almost* all of the money we need for this stage (not including plane tickets). So hopefully fund raising for the adoption can wait until later in the spring.
Q: Do the girls know you? Do they know that you want to adopt them?
A: No, and no. They will most likely not know anything about us until shortly before they come for Christmas. (Shortly could be a week or two, or could be an hour or two). New Horizons forbids us to talk to the girls about adoption while they’re here, so unless our paperwork goes super fast in Latvia and we get the official Latvian ok before they leave (read: referral, or “matched up”), they will be asked about being adopted when they get back. And yes, I said “asked,” because they can say “no,” especially N since she is over 12.
Q: This all seems pretty risky, don’t you think?
A: True, it is. We could go through all of this, even up to our second trip to Latvia and the girls could change their minds and say “No.” (This is something a lot of adopting parents are trying to persuade the court to change… it’s too much pressure on young kids, but until it changes, this is what we work with.) But, regardless of the risk, we’re willing to go for it. We do feel like this is the path God has us on, and we’re walking it. There could be a curve in the road beyond where we can see, and our ultimate destination could change, but until that happens, this is the direction we’re headed. Yes, it’s risky, but it’s a risk worth taking.
Q: Why don’t you give more information about the girls? Why don’t you give their names and tell us about their history?
A: I wish we could! We know so many precious things about them, that I want to share it all with the world, but I can’t for various reasons. First, we have to remember that these are real people, not just pictures. We want to respect them and their privacy. Many of you will meet them one day, and how uncomfortable would it be for them knowing that the whole world knows their history? I wouldn’t want to be in that position. Second, we have no rights to the girls yet, so the government of their homeland asks that we don’t disclose too much information in public about their children. Third, there have been incidents where people have posted about adopting and given a child’s name and location and others (extended family that had no interest in the child before) have found out and started fighting to get them back, just so that they wouldn’t go to the USA. So, for the safety and protection of everyone, we keep the blog info fairly vague.
I hope that helps answer some questions. If you have more, please comment below or email me. I will either answer you directly or do another blog post answering more questions.
Please keep us in your prayers as we walk this path! It’s exciting but scary and I never want to forget that it’s God who has set us on this path, seemingly for the purpose of setting two of the lonely into our family (see Psalm 68:6).