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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

We are planning to adopt TWO children

Garth and I are excited to announce that we are going to be attempting to adopt 2 unrelated children. About 3 weeks ago, America World had a conference call, and at the end of the call they mentioned that they are opening up the option for parents to do this. After much prayer and talking, we have decided to go forward with this endeavor. One of the kids we adopt will be 5 years old and the other will be 3 or younger, so they won't be the same age. The only thing that is different about this is we will have to fill out a separate application after we have passed our home study visits. We will also be paying an extra $3750 (half of the international program fee). The court hearings will be on the same day as well, so that won't be an issue.

The other change that has happened, is that the law that Ethiopia made stating that parents would need to be present for court has been put on hold. It is possible that it could go back into effect at any time, but right now we can have an AWAA representative go for us. I would still kind of like to go meet our kids and then go to court so the Ethiopian government can see how much we will love and care for these children, but since that will be an added expense that isn't absolutely required, time will tell whether I can or not.

I have also been asked by a number of people where the funds go that we pay in to the adoption agency, so I have outlined them below.

APPLICATION AND PAPERCHASE
Application fee $250
1st Installment of Program Fee $1500
Home Study $1300 plus mileage for 3 trips
Hague Training $175
Documents/Background Checks/Passports $100-$500
USCIS Fee & Update Fee + Fingerprinting $830
Notarization, Certification, and Authentication $400

DOSSIER SUBMISSION & WAITING
Courier Service $150
2nd Installment of Program Fee $2000
Post-Adoption Report Deposit $1000 (fully refundable if all post-adoption reports are returned on time)
Dossier Service and Transportation $800
Half international Program Fee (2 children) $5625

REFERRAL & TRAVEL
International Specialist Consultation $100-$400
3rd Installment of Program Fee $1500
1/2 International Program Fee (2 children) $5625
Airfare (2 adults) $2400-$4000
Airfare (1 child) $250-$1000
Visas (2 adults) $40
Visa/Embassy Fee (1 child) $400
In-Country Travel Package (2 adults) $1400-$2000

POST ADOPTION
Post Placement visit (2 children) $350 plus mileage
Post Adoption Administrative Fee $385
Re-Adoption (this is so the child will have a US birth certificate) $300-$1000
Post-Adoption Report Refund (refunded in installments as, and only if, each report is returned on time) ($1000)
Other Costs (doctor visit, related co-pays, social security card, passport cost, postage, phone calls, etc.) $100-$1000

This brings us to a grand total of $25,980 to $31,230

Thank you for your continued interest in our adoption. We are hoping that we can begin our home study visits as early as next week. I spoke to our Home study agency today and even though they won't have my background check yet, as soon as they receive the final referral letter, they will begin the visits. Yeah!

Sincerely,

Garth and Carmen

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Today I Kissed an Angel

Today I kissed an angel. I knew it from the start. The first time my angel smiled at me; I gave away my heart.

Today I kissed an angel; This angel child of mine. Though not of my creation, My child by God's design.

Today I kissed an angel. My heart is dancing wild; Our family, by a miracle; Blessed by our angel child.

All I Really Want by Steven Curtis Chapman