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Monday, May 31, 2010

frustrated with myself

well well i neglected to gather materials i need to send to our social worker, Hollie. They are here on my desk, but a few copies need to be made and i need to prepare the envelope. I guess that can be done in the morning. John goes back to work tomorrow and gabe just got back this evening....but i have a pretty busy week planned for us. Playdates, baby sitting, working (i am covering at the music academy for one of the day time employees), piano lessons, guitar lessons, bills to be paid, errands and grocery do i normally have time for all this and work too? Tomorrow is my first official day of summer break. I am still in search of an additional part time job and am striving to get a healthier grip on my diet. Its detox time! I am not going too strict with it, although when i think about it, I am cutting alot of things out. Being that i was vegan for close to 8 years, its not so hard. I am earning junk-food points to be used during my trip to Florida June 9-13th :)
We also are gearing up to possibly request to go to committee. I am trying to find an additional
medical perspective for one of the little boys and am sending the information to our social worker to review. I hope/pray/plan to have an decision by Thursday.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

WOW- what a week

Well I am done with school/teaching- this was my last week until August. I really loved this group of seniors but they had me stressed out this year- what a stressful turbulent year; professionally and personally. It was filled with ups and downs- but we definitely left on an up. I am picking up some extra hours next week at the music school, so that's good. Also, john has had some fun researching flights through different places on our way to Ethiopia. I got my insurance and employment letters for our dossier/home study- John finally has medical appointments to get his form done, which will be Tuesday, June 1st- so we are just waiting on our letters of reference (two have arrived, two haven't)- and we should be good to go for our homestudy
I got an email from USC yesterday saying i needed to accept my financial aid awards. I thought this was odd, because as of last month i had a measly work-study package (this goes with my teaching mentorship for a new teacher). So i went back online to their student system and saw that I had been awarded $20K!! This is because during my real research focused years in the program I won't be able to work full time, so this is my living expenses etc. Well this year i do have time to work full time (two online courses and a night course is what i have )- I still get the $. I am so happy because the overage will be used for living expenses and i can use our savings and my salary for the adoption!! This puts us super super close.
Our estimated time line looks something like this:
June- go to committee on a special little boy
End of June- Completed home study
July-August- immigration forms completed
October 12- Home study officially accepted at HOLT-
Mid October- invoiced for Dossier (which will also be done and ready to go)- pay dossier fee and agency program fees for ET child
November- materials sent to ET
DEC/JAN- court date- first trip????
March or April- 2nd trip????

I am hoping and praying that next Spring Break will be spent with a special new 3 year old

Sunday, May 23, 2010


We had a great homestudy visit....the kids we occupied with some crafty toys and frisbee "horseshoe" game for the first hour and a half- hung out in the living room...she really didnt tour through our whole house- just downstairs ...our social worker is super sweet and nice. She spoke with our kids some and lots with us...told us what documents were needed and said she will start typing up all she could this week and wait on the last two references and insurance benefits statements....sweet!!

Saturday, May 22, 2010


MY house is not ready for we are having a little family get-together at our house tonight- which will lend itself into more crazy messiness, but i am excited. I feel that when i get a clearer assured feeling about really being able to adopt (as in, a strong positive home visit- and the sense that our finances are truly sound) then we will request to go to committee....i am hoping and praying that it will be at the end of june/early July. I guess it just doesn't seem real to me until we are matched....and i am scared to go to committee until i feel super stable about it all...ugh all the unknowns! I am also apprehensive about who to chose to go to committee on...we are following two adorable little boys and i can't see how to chose without being ridden with guilt!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Easy like Sunday Morning

Ha- i wish things were easy....but they aren't always, but i guess things in life could always be harder. John is painting our windows and door frames onthe front porch :). That can be kinda easy for me- haha i actually did help.
In WORK NEWS- I have a contract for next year and will be teaching mainly all 9th grade geography- which was a request, not a punishment (i realy do not like teaching 9th graders when i am also teaching seniors- but all at once and no seniors will be good). I am aiming at changing some of the more common teaching practices with this subject. I am creating a service learning component to it (mainly raising funds for international charities- clean water, health education, sustainable farming "fair trade" issues- etc)- i am also impletmenting a portfolio based final assessment instead of any traditional, more standardized test. We will also plan an "international cxommunity building project- and invite teachers who are here from other countries, foriegn exchange students (we have a group or two each year at CHS) and any community members from our school district that are also from other countries- and put together an "international community festival- Richland School District". I shall be using this as some research for my PhD and i will also be getting a teaching intern from USC- HOLLA!!!! The way that my adviser at USC is prgraming the interns is that i will have the same one the whole year- different from when I did my masters...but i like it better this way for many reasons.

ADOPTION NEWS- Got a very promising health report on one of the little guys we are "watching"- was told we should not have any big issues going to committee beofre October (maybe in june or july) because many families are matched and then finish getting all paperwork done, also HOLT got my application specifically for the Ethiopia program on Thursday....

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Big expensive steps! Ups and downs

Well we have started things rolling! Paid the first half for the home-study and had our first meeting with our HS social worker. It went great. We have the actual home visit (2 hours or more) in two Sundays. We also sent in our International Adoption Services Agreement to our agency HOLT. I have been receiving information on two little boys we are interested in . I got a great update this week on a little 3 year old who had a brain bleed/stroke when he was a baby- that left him unable to use his right side, walk or talk. Since he has been in care (i think since last summer) he has regained movement, can run and walk and is beginning to talk!! I am so excited for him. He has a good sized grant which would really help out.
I also got my contract today for teaching next year- a plus. But I need to get another part time job for the summer. We will see...i am in super save mode and am a bit antsy that we arent doing enough. John used to tutor math/physics and he may go back to that on the side.
I need to renew my passport and pick up my medical documents, then get a statement from my bank and employer...then its on to immigration forms. I hope to have it all done by the end of the summer so we can submit it all at the end of September.
One of the guitar teachers here has already agreed to help with a fundraiser concert! woo hoo

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Limbo sucks... and its the story of my life

Ugh i hate how everything feels like its in limbo....the whole process of adoption in general feels like limbo to me until we actually have a child BUT thats not even the only limbo-esque part of my mind right now. We (us, teachers here in my district) still have yet to get our contracts. Many districts have given them out but others who are hard hit by the recession have waited and waited. The deadline ia May 15th. I am freaking out- what if i dont get a contract? PLUS i am trying to line up summer work teaching summer school or working more days in at the music academy, and thats all up in the air too. I hate it all beig up in the air... ironically i have gotten a little better with it. I just know i have tried to do all i can to secure these positions and get what i need done....but maybe it will all be for nothing? Although i feel bad b/c today i had a doctors appt at 1pm- i hate mid day appointments but i have to get appointments done before the end of May because i may not have insurance after June!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Sunday cleaning-fest 2010!~

Since yesterday was the Rosewood Crawfish Festival today must also have a festival theme- and is CLEAN-O-RAMA fest!! Well its not as festive as it could be (where are the margaritas??) Anyway we are not only cleaning but decluttering, throwing stuff out, donating for good-will, packing up winter clothes, painting the foyer, mowing the yard, cleaning patio, spraying down the porch, reorganizing the kennel-room. My mom and step dad are coming Wednesday- so I want it look nice. Also we should be planning our home visit/interview of our home study soon. We are meeting with our social worker next Saturday but its at her office. The meeting after that will be here.

John is doing a great job painting. We have new furniture in the living room- pictures will follow...for now i will just add a picture of me and Gabe.