Sunday, August 31, 2008

What's been going on

Sorry, no new pictures or updates on Kai, but I do have a few other related things I wanted to share. First, we had a conference call with our new agency about 10 days ago. Both Kent and I were impressed with what we heard. They were very professional and really seem to have their act together. The good news is that there will be no additional fees for us to pay! In addition, they do not believe that the switch of agencies should have any impact whatsoever on our time line. Things should continue to move as they have been. I am thankful to God that we seem to have ended up in a "best case scenario" situation. Thanks for all your prayers.

The other exciting bit of news is that I have spent the last several weeks putting together a business case for my company to consider offering adoption benefits. The company currently offers adoption "assistance", which consists of an outdated book on adoption and a number to call where they can tell you which agencies are in your area. In my proposal, I requested both paid time off, as well as financial assistance, in an effort to provide equity with the benefits provided to birth mothers. I sent the proposal to the VP of Compensation and Benefits and was told that I had a compelling business case and he would look into it! Not sure where this will go, but it really makes me feel good that I may have a hand in helping future adoptive parents receive the benefits they deserve!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Latest Video Of Kai

This is latest video we received last week. If you listen very closely, on two separate occasions, it sounds like they are saying Kai Wen-Yao (somewhere around 34 seconds and 56 seconds - I guess we've seen this a few times : ). If we are right, this means that a). the care package did, in fact, arrive, since we asked in the letter to the family to start calling him Kai and b). they are actually doing as we have asked. I would like to add that this also means he is in foster care, but it could still be the women from TWCA.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

New Kai Photos!

We received new pictures of Kai today, what a nice surprise!

Check out those chubby cheeks!

There's a nice smile!

and... the "old man" pants!

Oh yeah... we finally "fixed" the comments, so now anyone should be able to leave a comment without having to log in!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Maybe it's not so bad...

We heard from our agency last night. They are in the process of potentially transitioning us to a new agency out of Texas that has been in the business for over 100 years. Our Program Director will be flying to Taiwan the week of August 20th to get agreement from the Taiwanese agency (TWCA) to transition the cases to this new agency. There have already been preliminary discussions and TWCA seems open to the change.

The other good news is that there should be no additional fees to complete the adoption, other than updating some paperwork. According to our former agency, anyone who has paperwork currently sitting in Taiwan (this means us) should have no delays in processing.

One thing that made us feel really good is that our former case manager e-mailed today to see how we were doing. She said that the Program Director will continue to be advocating for us during the transition (as he has done with getting us to even get into the Taiwan program), so that is very positive. Lastly, she said that, although she can't help us with completing the adoption, she hopes we will stay in touch, especially once Kai gets home. This simple act has given me a much more positive perception of the agency.

Stay tuned...

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Kai turns 4 months old today...and now the bad news...

Yes, it's true.. Kai turn 4 months old today! It is hard to believe we've had his referral for over three months now. Time is flying and he's not even home yet. Here's another picture (not new...most of you have seen this), but he's so darn cute it won't hurt to see it again! My boss said he looks like a hip-hop dance team member in this pic.

Now, for a very different picture. Here's a picture of Kai's daddy, with an expression similar to the one we both had when we opened our e-mail on Monday after getting home from work...

Why the long face, you ask? Well, on Monday, we received an e-mail from our agency that they are no longer "in the business of" international adoption. That's right...done, finished, kaputt. Apparently, the problems with International adoption as of late, combined with a failure to receive Hague accreditation, was more than the financial sheet could handle.

So, what does this mean to us? No idea. I have been trying to call their office all day but keep getting voice mail. I've left messages, but have yet to receive a call back. We are supposed to be transferred to another agency soon, but we are not sure when that will happen or to what agency. I am hopeful that this has no impact on the hearing on Friday or the length of time to complete the adoption. Oh yeah - and we already paid the agency the full adoption fee. We hope the new agency will complete the adoption out of the goodness of their hearts instead of charging us fees we already paid to our first agency. A girl can hope, can't she??? We will keep you posted as we hear more. Any and all prayers would definitely be appreciated.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Nursery and Miscellaneous Thoughts

For those of you that haven't seen the nursery, I thought I would include a few pictures. It's not completely done...we ordered new blinds, which are in, but we haven't put up yet. Then we still need to put up the matching valances. I also have a matching cloth wall-hanging that will be placed where the current pictures above the crib are.

We decided to go with the "jungle theme".....

The penguin in the crib is a gift from my mom...I think it may be a while before Kai is as big as the penguin is :-)

This week marks another milestone in our adoption journey. There is a court hearing in Taiwan on August 8th where the birth mother will appear and verbally relinquish her rights. I keep thinking about how she must feel and how difficult this will be for her. I know she must think about Kai every day and may be wondering if she made the right choice.

I also wonder if she thinks about us as much as we think about her. I pray for her everyday and am thankful that she chose life over abortion. She has blessed three lives in that decision...Kai's and our own. Plus, there is the number of people that Kai will bless that can't be counted. For those of you that believe in prayer, please pray for Kai's mother as she goes to court on Friday - for strength and peace and blessings for her. We appreciate it!