Time in Kigali Rwanda

Saturday, November 29, 2008


Oh dear... just when I thought we had finished the paperwork there's more to be done. I got home from a nice little thanksgiving break to find a letter form our CIS office regarding some paperwork that I submitted two months ago. Apparently they either misplaced the paperwork or cannot figure it all out and alas... now I have to go back to the place where I got the orignials lasttime and have more certified copies printed and overnighted to the CIS office. Yuk!!!! I will bust my behind to get those out asap on Monday. Also, we have to get ANOTHER round of fingerprinting done. This will make the third set for three different agencies. Why they cannot streamline this process into one central adoption agency is a mystery to me, but I am sure they have their reasons.

Anyway... I refuse to let the frustration of it all get in the way of the joy of this experience. Keeping perspective I know that these beautiful baby blessings will be worth it :)

Wish us the best and speady turnouround and approvals as we tackle this next hurdle towards Rwanda! :)

In the meantime I found some good pictures of rwanda on the web and made a little slideshow to tide people over till they can see our pictures :) Enjoy!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Not much news

Not much news to report this week. We are waiting for a letter from the CIS office regarding some additional paperwork that they need. As soon as we get that I will turn around and send it back and we will continue to wait for CIS approval. Once we have that we can submit our dossier and wait another month or more for approval from the rwandan embassy and then it goes off to Rwanda for another series of waiting and paperwor. Whew! What a process!

On a much more interesting note, I stumbled across two more families who have adopted from Rwanda recently. Once even adopted a baby girl! It has been so much fun to connect with other families who have been there, done that!!!

Happy thanksgiving!
I know we have a lot to be thankful for! Among these gifts are our baby girl(s) who might definately be waiting for us as we speak!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

about the orphanages... and a great book!!!!

During our phone call with the Rwanda people on Wednesday we were asking about the orphanages there. They said that there are several orphanages but Gladney will only be working with about three to start with. And, of those three, one orphanage has mostly infants to three year olds, so it is very likely that our girls will come from that orphanage. Because Gladney is trying to get established there, it is not recommended that we connect with the orphanage directly but they are going to keep us updated on things that they might need that we could bring with when we travel etc. They did say that the children in these orphanages that they work with are very well taken care of and the staff are great so our babies will be in great hands till we get to them.

On another note, I am reading a fabulous, but heartwrenching book right now called Left to Tell by Immaculee Ilibagiza. She survived the genocide by living in a tiny bathroom with seven other women for three months and tells the story of her family and what her village went through during the genocide. It is a great book and really helps to understand what happened in Rwanda and how despite that horrible ordeal you can still find hope and a future with Christ. I would recommend the book to anyone that wants to learn more about the culture, people, and history of our babies.

One interesting sidenote that I read in the book is that people there give their babies a unique last name, in America of course we often give our children a unique first name... but its reversed in Rwanda.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

busy week and more work

Ok... so we had our phone call with the Rwanda people on Wed and it went great. We were assured that we are on the right track and were given some insights into how thigs are expected to roll and how to navigate easily through some of those processes. The Rwanda people also made sure we understood that this process is super dooper new and we are only the Third family to have gotten this far so far and only one family has submitted their dossier and is waiting for a referral at this point, so, although they will be good at giving us updates there is a lot of unknowns and we will have to see as we go :)

Also... we were officially approved to adopt from Rwanda this week. They sent our dossier packet and I have been busy putting together those few documents that I did not already have. The good news is that we do not have to have our dossier autenticated by a bunch of people... it will go the the Rwandan embassy in the US and then take about three weeks for them to process and then they will send it off to Africa! So... for now we are just waiting for our CIS approval and federal fingerprints to get back and then we will send off the dossier to the embassy. I am hoping that we can get it in the mail in the next two weeks, which means about 5 weeks until it's sent to Africa... just in time for Christmas! What a perfect Christmas gift, and only one that Jesus himself can orchestrate!!!!

We would still appreciate all your prayers for this process. Pray that the roadblocks will be out of the way, or minimal at best :) And... most importantly pray that our babies will be safe, happy, healthy!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Snow, New Friends, and a link or two...

We have had an eventful last week. Not necessarily adoption wise but by plowing ourselves out of 4 feet of snow!!! Being snowed in for two days did allow me to get some things done, including watching 8 hours of training videos that we have to watch in order to complete our adoption. So.. the good news is I am done with the training videos!!!! Hooray!!!!

Not much else to report though. I am expecting that we will be getting our "official approval packet" in the mail this week. This packet will contain caseworker information, and step-by-step dossier instructions for Rwanda. We did get a call on Thursday from the Rwanda caseworker. She just wanted to double check with us that we are still wanting to pursue Rwanda before moving forward. There is a slight "issue" in our application that she wasn't sure how Rwanda would respond to. She did check with some in country staff and they seem to think that we will be fine. However, your prayers are definitely appreciated. Specifically we want God's will to prevail. If you can pray that any roadblocks for us in this process would be dismantled that would be swell :)

Oh... and another fun thing... A family got in touch with us this week who is also in process of adopting from Rwanda. We have a lot of friends who have been through Ethiopia programs but none from Rwanda so it has been great touching base with them. It's crazy how, despite not knowing people and living in completely different geographical areas... just having that common vision and goal can instantly connect families. I wish them the best and God's blessings in their journey and hope we'll have a lifetime of chances to share our amazing adoption stories together!

We have a phone meeting with our caseworker and another Rwanda representative on Wednesday morning and will probably have a lot of information to share at that point. In the meantime, below are two links from our agency's director who is in Rwanda right now touring the orphanages and working with the government there. These are short and sweet and don't provide a lot of information but are nice to listen to anyway. The first link is the post from today... the other one is a link to archived posts from the last week (some are about Ethiopia too).



Saturday, November 1, 2008

names and update

Just heard from our agency that our home study report is complete. Now they just need to "officially" complete our file and transfer it to another department to help with the dossier (the paperwork that goes to Africa).

In the meantime we have been watching some not-so-entertaining training videos, although there is lots of valuable information in them, and checking out baby names.. which is a fun process!!! :)

And.. now I am always wondering if she, or shes, have been born and if so what they look like, if they're healthy, when we'll get to meet them etc. etc. Sooo much to think about! I can't wait for our lives to change in this way!