Just to catch everyone up, on September 13th, we did not receive our referral for Ivelina as we had hoped. Instead, we received word that somehow someone in Bulgaria had re-worded the labeling of Ivelina's special needs. The new wording did not match the wording in our paperwork, so we were told that we must re-do our home study and NBC approval so that all the wording matches.
This unexpected event has caused us to back-peddle a little bit and jump through a few extra hoops. We have officially made it through Hoop #1: on Friday, October 4th, we received copies of our updated home study, and we were able to get those sent off to NBC the same day. Yay! Just not quite as exciting as it was the first time.
Now, we wait on NBC. I was concerned that the government shut-down would affect our NBC approval, but we were assured that our officer is still working. That is good news. The first time around with NBC, we were given approximate turn-around times, but this time, we just don't have any expectations of how long it will take. I will definitely be a squeaky wheel to our NBC officer, though. =) We hope it won't take too many weeks to get through Hoop #2, but who knows!
We also received word this week that there are some new requirements for our second trip to Bulgaria, the pick-up trip. Instead of 7 days, we will be in country for 11 days. This was a definite shocker for us! This change means 3-4 more days of hotel and food we must pay for, but it also may reduce our airfare a tiny bit because we will no longer be flying in and out on a weekend. Still, I know from reading my other favorite blogs that after everything is official and you have your baby, couples just wanna get home! I'm sure that will be us too, but now the reality is that we are looking at an 11 day stay in country.
I am SO ready for some good, positive, definitive news to tell people! I get asked the "how long" question at least 5 times a day, and believe me I want to have a better answer, I do. Lately, I've just been saying, "Well, everything is just going slowly right now, but it's going." I know people don't fully understand this comment, but just trust me, we are do everything humanly possible to get things done as quickly as possible. Yes, it's unfair. Yes, there are tons of children in the world needing families. No, we don't love all this government and paper work mess. Yes, it's all a bit crazy. Yes, we are excited, we love our girl, and we want her now. But, this whole thing is building patience, long-suffering and trust in Jeremy and myself. We have good days and not-so-good days, but we know God is in control of this adoption.
Even though I don't have photos or updates about Ivelina, I do have an Ivelina's room update! You can read more about our progress on her room here and here. She now has the cutest step stool in the world to help her climb into her big girl bed! Check it out:
Yeah, I went to visit my mom for her birthday and she gave me a present! We just love it!
Thanks for reading,