“You’ve given me everything that I will need to make it through this crazy thing called life.”

I am mother to a daughter who has had three mothers.

Her first mom gave her life, brought her into this world, cared for her as long as she was able, and then let her go. There is so little I know about her, but I imagine that Jia has her nose, or her eyes or that maybe those enviable lips come from her. There is a lot we will never know about her choices and actions and motivations, but we will speak of her in our home with all the respect due someone who gave us one of the greatest gifts of our lives. There are moments when I am rocking Jia before bed, I think of her first mom and how she might have done this too when Jia was just a little baby. She stared at those same eyes, saw her with the tufty hair she had as an infant, and, I want to believe, loved her.  She holds her first moments, her first cry, her teeny tiny baby hands and feet. She holds the beginning of Jia’s life and I hope that somehow, she knows that Jia is well and home and loved.


I still remember getting a phone call from our adoption agency that started with the words “so, we have a very unique situation for you.” They went on to say that Jia’s foster family wanted to be in touch with us, and would we want to be in touch with them? Uhhh, duh. Yes, yes we would. About 5 minutes later, I started writing an email to the woman who had been raising this child I called daughter, but barely knew, as her own for the last 16 months. Jenn and her family were living in Shanghai because of her husband’s job, and they had become aware of the opportunity to foster Chinese orphans while they waited for their forever families. The way that Jia made her way to their family is another long story altogether, but she made it there, sick with pneumonia, and in need of the love of a family to heal her, body and soul. In her report to CCAI when Jia’s file was prepared, Jenn described her as “learning things at 150 miles per hour.” At Jenn’s house she learned her first words, took her first steps, and most importantly, learned how to be daughter, sister, and beloved child.


Not to mention Jenn somehow got her to eat vegetables. Miracles abound.

I can’t imagine what it must have been like to all the sudden “meet” the people who are going to parent the child you consider a daughter. But Jenn embraced us with open arms and more grace then I can even fathom. She shared information with us, answered our million questions, and worked hard to keep in touch with us through weird Internet and time zone challenges. She prepared Jia for our family as well as you can prepare a two year old for a complete life upheaval. I cannot even imagine how difficult that must have been, to prepare a child you love to leave you, and walk into the next part of her life. And I can’t even talk yet about how the end of Jia’s time in China went down, but suffice it to say that Jenn has more strength and backbone then anyone I know to make it through those last hard, sad weeks.

Jia's last day with her foster family...

Jia’s last day with her foster family…

There are no adequate words for what Jenn and her family did for us. No way to truly convey the enormity of their love for Jia without sharing more of her story then is mine to share. But let me just tell you that the foundation that they laid for her will carry her forward for the rest of her life, and will impact all of us forever.

Jia's second birthday... this is one of my favorite pictures of her and Jenn.

Jia’s second birthday… this is one of my favorite pictures of her and Jenn.


There is a quote that floats around the adoption community that says this: “A child born to another woman calls me mommy. The depth of that tragedy and the magnitude of that privilege are not lost on me.”  In our case, Jia is a child born to and a child raised by other women and never do I take the immense privilege of being her mom lightly. On Mother’s Day, the day we’re supposed to honor the mother’s in our lives, I want to make sure I take time to honor Jia’s other mothers, the one I know and the one I don’t. I feel them alongside me daily, I see them in Jia all the time, and it’s my joy to have them as part of our lives in whatever way is possible. We love you so much. Thanks for loving us and especially Jia, so well.


Family Day, Jia Day, Sisters Day… the BEST day.

Meeting Jia and the hours after feel like a dream. It went exactly how we hoped but didn’t dare to actually expect. It was perfect and I cannot believe it’s real.

We woke up this morning at 3:30am and couldn’t go back to sleep. So after we just resigned ourselves to being tired and got up and got things ready, go ourselves ready, had breakfast with some travel group friends, and then came back up to the room to wait for another hour, which seemed like an eternity. Thank you to the people who chatted with me while I waited, it was great!

Then we got on a bus and headed to the government building where we would be meeting Jia. You are taken to this little room which has an outside door and the vans from the orphanages pull up there. There was already a little guy there, so we took pictures for that family and for each successive family as they got their kiddos, and then there was a lull with no kids for a little while. So we were waiting and my friend Teresa said that a van pulled up with a little girl. It was JIA!!! We watched her walk in and were able to be right inside the door when she came in, so showed her the puppy we brought and gave her a sucker, and her nanny kind of stepped out of the way and she stood with us for a few minutes. I pulled out the photo book we had sent and brought a copy of and showed her and that seemed to maybe connect? At that point she was willing to sit on Josh’s lap and we pulled out all the stops – Goldfish, water, toys, books, whatever you want, we’ll get you! The Goldfish were the ticket and she figured out the snack trap pretty quick. We spent a little time sitting on the floor and then our guide called us over to sign paperwork. She was still attached to Josh and sat on his lap while he signed. Then we showed her the little playground they have and that was really the ticket! She LOVED it and really lit up and played with both of us, and seemed to open up to me a little bit. We also had to do a formal family picture there, which was interesting. But we managed it so it’s all good.

Then it was time to go! She walked out with me and did well on the bus ride over (no car seats in China!), although the three hour trip to Nanyang on Wednesday will be interesting. We got to the hotel and she walked in with us and straight to the room with no problems at all! Since then she’s played, we’ve walked the halls, she’s gotten fresh clothes and a diaper, and she’s eaten lunch. She actually launched herself at Josh at one point and said DADA!!! What a miracle. I laid her down for her nap and she was OUT.

I feel truly blessed by how this has gone. I cannot believe it. I had prepared myself for anything, but maybe not for this smooth of a transition. It’s very possible that she will have a hard time later, maybe at bed time or in a few days, but for now things are so wonderful it’s unbelievable. I can’t imagine how confused she is and how many questions she must have and I marvel at the openness of her heart to even let us in a little, let alone like this. She is so brave.

We are so grateful for your prayers and good thought for us today. You all must have a special line straight to Heaven because we feel like God has blessed us far beyond what we imagined.

So, for now we’re just chilling, waiting for her to wake up and then we’re going to play and hang out and venture out for dinner. It finally feels really and it’s better then I could have ever dreamed. What a gift we’ve been given.

Here are all the pictures from today.  Enjoy!  🙂


We’re going on an adventure!

Y’all.  We leave in SIX DAYS.  S-I-X.  As in one less then 7, one more then 5.  SIX.

This is a very auspicious day because a year ago today, we signed with our adoption agency and started this whole crazy process.  It seems unreal that a year ago, we only imagined our daughter, and now we get to meet her in 6 days.

The crazy thing with adoption is that so much of it is waiting.  Once you’re done with the dossier part, you’re largely just hanging out while people to pass all your paperwork around and give it their approval, so you just WAIT…. and then the last person stamps it and it’s GO TIME.  We got Travel Approval June 25th, got our Consulate Appointment and scheduled our plane tickets on the 26th and we take off the 8th.  That’s crazy fast!

It also means that reality comes slamming in, and for me it’s been some hard moments realizing that Eden won’t be my only anymore.  I assume this is something that every mom goes through when their first baby isn’t their only baby anymore, but that’s been hard the last few days.  Add that to the logistical demands of packing for China and tying up last minute details, which takes a lot of my time and ooof, Mom Guilt like WHOA.  I know we will all adjust and it’s going to be so good, but I think we’re all grieving what is because we don’t yet fully know what will be.

Josh and I both feel like our emotions change radically every 5 minutes… we’re happy, sad, worried, excited, nervous, ready to go and completely overwhelmed with everything that still has to be done.  I don’t know, you guys.  I want to put a pretty bow on this, but right now it’s kind of like we’re just muddling through to the end.  We’re trying to stay present and actually live the next 6 days aware and that’s taking all we’ve got right now.

We are looking forward to having this part of it done, and getting on a plane and being able to just FOCUS on getting to Jia.  That is one thing we don’t have any conflicted emotions about…we are ECSTATIC about finally getting her in our arms and finding out who she really is.  We know that this is going to be SO HARD for her, and that what is exciting for us is terrifying for her.  That part of it is heartbreaking.  We will actually meet her on July 13th around 11:00am (so 11pm July 12th Eastern time) and we’d really love it if people would pray and send all their positive energy for her that night.

So, here’s my conclusion… we’re all a little bonkers, and we probably will be for a while.  We’ve been leaning on friends and family and your prayers and good thoughts and kind words lately and are so grateful for them all.  I’ve had so many people offer to help do anything we need and even though I haven’t been good at taking people up on their offers, just the offers themselves and knowing people are thinking of us has meant so much.

I am going to try to blog here during our trip so stop back!  Can’t wait to share this crazy adventure with you!

Are You Ready For This?

Does it seem to anyone else that every blog post I write goes something like “sometime REALLY SOON we’ll be going to China, but not yet, actually… “? Because that’s pretty much how it feels around here these days. Like, we are SO CLOSE and yet, still in the United States, waiting and waiting and waiting.

So, here’s what’s new: in the last couple weeks, we’ve submitted our I800 form, and had it approved, and sent to the Consulate for approval. We’ve applied for our Visas. We’ve applied for Jia’s Visa (for a while the computer system was down and it has the potential to delay our travel and I finally came completely unhinged. They fixed it today though!).

At this point, we’re waiting on them to issue our Article 5, which we should get on June 18th. This let’s the CCCWA know our Immigration file is COMPLETE and then we will be issued Travel Approval. Travel Approval usually comes 5-7 days after Article 5 is issued, but there are a few people who have waited 20+ days recently due to a computer glitch. If you want to pray/send good thoughts for something, a super short Travel Approval wait is high on my list. Honestly, I will be devastated if we get to that point and then we just have to wait.

Once we have TA, we’ll apply for a date to meet with the Consulate in Guangzhou, which is where we’ll complete our adoption. The rest of our trip hinges on our Consulate Appointment (CA) so once we have that, we’ll be able to buy plane tickets and GO! Most people travel 10-21 days after TA, but I know some people who have only waited a few days before they were on a plane. We will be asking for the first available CA and the soonest possible flights.

Listen, there was a time when I was feeling kind of conflicted about this trip because there was still so much to do and so many things to check off my list. I’m over it now. I don’t care. My house could be crumbling around me and I would get on a plane because I need my kid home now (do not take that as an invitation to test me, Universe… it is a figure of speech.) I’ve reached the point where I will figure it out, I will make it work, I will accept anything as long as she’s with us. I am working hard to stay fully present in this current life and to notice and appreciate how awesome life is right now (because it is!), but a huge part of my heart and mind are in China now more than ever and It’s just time for Jia to be home. I’m ready to start tackling this new normal, I’m ready to have some illusion of control, I’m just READY.

So, that’s the latest, that’s our way forward… we’d so appreciate your prayers and good thoughts for speedy TA and cheap flights (because it turns out that booking international flights days before you leave is pretty much the opposite of cheap!), and most especially for Jia. We’ll keep you posted as things are happening!

Some Things I’ve Learned So Far: The “Let’s Talk About My Feeeeeeelings” Edition

china map 2

Image Source

Things that adoption has taught me (so far):

  • Waiting is not my favorite. I mean, duh, right? But this kind of waiting is unlike any other kind I’ve ever experienced because at the end of this wait lies my child, my youngest, my baby. It is very different from a pregnancy wait, too, because there are so many factors out of my control or ability to do anything about.  We simply have to trust that the people who are doing all the things we’d rather be doing ourselves are doing them well, and we believe they are.  We are so lucky to know that she is very well cared for and well loved and safe, but the process of entrusting someone else with the care of your child is rough.
  • Control IS my favorite, and I don’t have any of it. We are currently at the mercy of the Chinese government, then we’ll be at the mercy of the US government, and then it switches back and forth until the end. We’re at the mercy of plane ticket prices, hotel bookings, and other people’s plans. We are dependent on others for advice, direction and “how to’s” on just about everything. I have been so grateful for the people who work at our agency and the people we’ve dealt with in government and the people who have walked this road before me for their advice and patience and reassurances, but I am looking forward to having some sort of solid ground back. But I just realized as I’m typing this that adoptive parenting is, in some ways, a whole new ball game, so I should just resign myself to not knowing anything for a while.
  • Fundraising is hard. PLEASE don’t misconstrue that to mean that I am not beside myself with gratitude for all of your contributions. I just mean that I hate asking. I don’t like being the needy one. I am an extremely uncomfortable self promoter. I don’t ask for help well. I am a hard core introvert. I worry that people will get sick of us. I worry that people will make unkind judgments. It’s just a recipe for a lot of discomfort. But we truly could not do it without help, so we’ve asked, which leads me to my next point….
  • We have the awesomest people on Earth, ever in the history of the world, period, full stop, do not even try to argue with me, I mean it. I will do a full post about this later on, but just know that we have been truly blown away by how you’ve rallied for us, and how well you’ve loved all of us through this process. People I knew would show up, and people I never expected have lavished us with love and support and good will in way we will never be able to repay. If you want to see me ugly cry (you don’t though, ask Josh), ask me sometime about the things people have done for us this last 8 months. And know that it’s is not only or even mostly, financial support that that we’re talking about. It’s the questions, and the interest and the kind and supportive texts and emails and calls. It’s the people who say “if you need anything, let me know” and mean it. We have such an amazing community supporting us and Jia and we are so thankful.
  • Love crosses oceans and doesn’t even need to meet in person to be real. We love Jia. She’s ours and we’re hers and we’re us all together and we haven’t even met yet. That is the craziest, realest, most surprising thing about all of this. It will grow and change and go deeper once we meet, of course, but it’s there and it’s real and it’s not going away. In much the same way that you love your biological children before you meet them in person, we love Jia, and that love gets deeper when you’re in the thick of life together and it’s built on shared experiences and memories and showing up when you’re needed. I can’t wait to get started on that next part.

So, those are a few things I’ve learned so far, and I can’t wait to learn more.  This process has been crazy and hard and magical and humbling and achingly beautiful and full of bone deep grief and mind boggling delight.  This is adoption, and it’s brutiful (brutal/beautiful).

Win an iPad Mini 2 *** Help Bring Jia Home!

Hi there!  If you’re new here, let me catch you up!  We are currently in the process of adopting a sweet as can be 2 year old, named Jia.  She is from China.  You can learn more about her here.  Our total adoption costs are in the neighborhood of $30,000, so we’re doing some fundraising to help with that.  And here are the details on our current fundraiser!


ipad raffle 1


That small print you can’t read just says that you can make a tax deductible donation at https://www.purecharity.com/jen-pollards-adoption. If you’re local, you’re welcome to just give us cash or a check.

The raffle will conclude on 4/15/15 and we’ll post here and on Facebook to let you know who won!  If it’s you, we’ll ship the iPad Mini 2 to you directly from Amazon.

Thank you for your donations and for helping us get closer to bringing Jia home!  We’re so lucky to have such awesome family and friends!

Dossier = DONE!!!

Today was a big, big day because today I sent our dossier to CCAI – the completion of months and months of literal blood, sweat and tears.  I’m not sure it’s truly sunk in that it’s DONE and there are no more pages in the Dossier Guide to read, no more documents to track down, no more asking our awesome notary friend Michelle to bring her stamp to church yet again.  Looking at that packet of paperwork in July I could hardly imagine this day and now it’s here.

The final stack of paperwork, copies, certifications, and pictures.

The final stack of paperwork, copies, certifications, and pictures.

Every time we hit a big moment, I expect something akin to the skies parting and the voice of God descending.  But instead, today I sat in the parking lot whispering fervent prayers of safe keeping and speed over my documents, I mailed my package and posed for this picture… and then I went to the grocery store.  The holy and the normal happening all together, which is just as it should be.

dossier complete

So what happens now?  Well, that’s a good question, and one I asked my CCAI group today because I really wasn’t sure.  I’ve been so focused on getting our dossier done that I haven’t even looked forward to what comes next.  Tomorrow by noon our package will arrive at CCAI and will be there for 9-11 business days where it will undergo three levels of critical review to check for anything we missed or mistakes.  They’ll put it in a pretty red folder, mount all of our photos, and then it is sent off to China (eeeekkkk!).  Then after about a week, we are officially “logged in” and we do a happy, happy dance of joy.  At that point, we are waiting for our official Letter of Acceptance that indicates that we do, indeed, want to adopt Jia (we do, we do, we do, we do!!!!!!!).  From what I understand the wait for that is currently running about 2 and a half months so it’s going to be a little while.  People who have been there, done that have said that this is the time to get in shape so you can lug around a toddler, get your house in order (in our case, getting Jia’s room ready), get your funding in order, and basically to use your waiting time well, so that’s my goal.

We are one (freaking enormous) step closer to Jia and it feels pretty awesome.  We have an ending in sight, we have a clear path forward and we are ready, ready, ready.


Fitting our hearts in a shoebox is hard….

One of the exciting things that happen when you get matched is that you get to send your child a care package! I am planning to send Jia’s this week and thought you all might be interested in knowing what we sent.

This care package will go to her orphanage before it goes to her foster family.  In the instruction guide they request that you keep the size of the package to shoe box size due to customs issues, so we’re talking about cramming gifts for Jia, her foster family and the orphanage director and the nannies… in a shoe box.  It was a challenge for sure.

So, first, the things we sent for Jia are a large blanket, a small fabric square blanket, a stuffed dog, a photo album with all of our family and a few friends in it, and a recordable story book with all of our voices.  I was going to send the Puffs, but totally ran out of space.  Thanks to the suggestions of people on Facebook, I ordered some vacuum seal bags which worked really well to get all the “fluffy stuff” down to a manageable size.  We also sent along several memory sticks because we’ve heard that they often get returned with many, many pictures from the time kids were brought to the orphanage, and we’re also hoping to get one back from her foster family.  It would be a gift to her and to us, to have those pictures.

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We actually bought two sets of all of Jia’s items, so we’ll take those with us when we travel in hopes that if she did get the care package, she will recognize some of the items, as it’s likely that many of the items won’t be returned to us or brought with her.  Eden has been sleeping with the puppy every night since we got it, and we washed her blankets in our detergent so she might recognize that smell when we meet her.  They say smell is a powerful sense, so we’re hoping they’re right.

For the nannies and director at her orphanage we sent Bath and Body Works lotion.  Apparently, that’s a highly regarded gift, so hopefully they like it.

For her foster family, I actually was able to talk to an expat American living currently in China and just sent whatever she suggested, so I sent Reese’s cups, Kraft Mac & Cheese, Ranch dressing mix packets, and disposable razors, which we hear are hard to come by in China. I was going to include the lotion too (another hot commodity in China), but… shoe box. We also wrote them a letter introducing ourselves and telling them about our hopes for Jia.  This package is how they will likely find out Jia has been matched, and I’m sure that will be a bittersweet moment for them.

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The care package will be delivered to her orphanage and then forwarded on to her foster family from there.  While her orphanage has been pretty good in the past about getting the package out, there is now a new director, so we’ll see how it goes.  You can send all your prayers and good juju for our package to get to Jia.  In the long run, it probably won’t be a huge deal, but for now it feels like all we can do for her, so we really want it to get there.

In other news, just as a quick “where we are in the process” update, we sent our documents to the NY China Consulate expecting it to be about 10-12 days before we got them back, but due to a paperclip where there should have been a staple (nope, not even kidding…), we had to resubmit a document which meant a whole mess of additional paperwork, money orders, copies and swear words.  As of this morning, all of our additional paperwork is on its way to New York, so hopefully this will do the trick.  If it doesn’t, as I so calmly told my friends the day we found out about all this, I’m going to drive to New York and staple my home study to someone’s forehead.  I kid, of course… but I really do hope this is it!

A little of this, a little of that…

Hi friends!  No big news to share, but I wanted to do a quick update that includes a few different pieces of this adoption puzzle.

Where we are now:

Our dossier is currently in the hands of the China Consulate in New York City.  This is the first time since we started this process that our dossier has been mailed anywhere (we just walked it in to all the other places), so it’s a weird feeling not to have it close by.  Currently the wait time for processing is 6-8 business days, so we should have it back by the first week of February.  Then, it’s on to critical review with our agency (about 9-11 business days) and then on to China where we should get an official Log in Date within about 5-7 days.  The end is in sight!  I look back over the last 6 months and am blown away by how much we accomplished in that time.

Telling people about Jia:

I thought maybe some of you would be interested in how we told people we were matched.  We got matched a lot sooner then we expected so we didn’t have a lot of time to think about how to announce the news to Eden, our parents and siblings, but I think we did okay.  We printed out sheets of paper that looked like this, but personalized them for each person,


And put them in red envelopes and gave them to people as Christmas presents.   Everyone’s reaction was a little shock mixed with a lot of joy.  It was so fun to get to tell people in person and in a special way.

I also wanted to say a huge THANK YOU to all of you who left your excited well wishes on Facebook and elsewhere.  Getting to share this experience with all of you has made this process even more special.

What’s next:

Once we have our LID, we wait for our “hard” Letter of Approval, and then we start filling out more paperwork that I don’t even know about yet because I think our agency doesn’t want to overwhelm us (too late!!).  We will travel 3-6 months after our Log in Date in China so we’re still on target to travel sometime between June and August assuming nothing significant changes.  Josh and I both keep having moment of “at this time next year, Jia will be ______” or, my favorite from the other day as we were sitting at lunch “holy crap, we’re going to have two kids.”  We’ve already starting making plans for the summer with the tentative “well, we’re not sure when we’re traveling, so we probably can, but…”.  I mean, things are getting real, folks!

We are also working on grants and fundraising right now, so more paperwork!  We’ll keep you updated as we get fundraisers planned!

So, that’s our update for now.  Nothing earth shaking and it’s hard to beat my last post, but I wanted to keep you all in the loop as we wait for our girl to come home!

Our Beautiful Daughter, Jia

When I first started this blog, one of the posts I was most excited to write was the one that started “WE’RE MATCHED!!” and here we are, months sooner than we planned and more delighted than I could have imagined.  Friends, please meet our beautiful daughter…. WE’RE MATCHED!!!

  Dang Jia Qi 10.15.14 4

Some of you want the facts and some of you want the details, so we’ll do facts first:  Our daughter’s name is Jia Qi, and she is 23 months old (she’ll turn 2 on February 2nd).  She is currently living with an American foster family in China, but we don’t know much about them other then that.  We do know that she has an older foster sister though, which is kind of awesome!  We really hope to stay in touch with them after she is adopted, but it’s unlikely we will be able to contact them before due to the rules and regulation regarding adoption in China. We also don’t know if they speak to her in English or Chinese, but we’re hoping she will at least know some English before we get there. She has a postoperative heart condition (that was repaired in China) that will need followed up with a pediatric cardiologist, but otherwise, she is healthy!  Her paperwork says that she is learning things at “150 miles per hour.”  We  could not be more smitten… isn’t she beautiful?!  We feel so lucky to get to be her parents!!!

foster sister covered

Now, for the details!  I received a call from CCAI on December 12th, sitting at work.  I saw CCAI come up on the caller ID, but I had been waiting on a phone call back about a dossier question, so I was pretty surprised to hear the person on the other end say “we have a file for you to review!”  Our CCAI contact went through the basic contents of the file and then asked if I was still interested.  I couldn’t say yes fast enough!  As soon as I hung up the phone, I started crying… mother’s intuition?  I don’t know.  In any event, I waited for the info to come through in my email, and called Josh to tell him.  Because she is with a foster family, we were lucky enough to get lots of extra pictures, which was so awesome.  I looked at those pictures and that was pretty much it for me.  I honestly didn’t care what the paperwork said.  She was ours from the minute I saw her.  I started looking through her paperwork, and emailed it all to an international adoption clinic doctor with whom we have an established relationship and asked her to look at everything.  And then, because it was a Friday… we waited.


We heard back from Dr. Ottegen on Monday who reviewed all of the paperwork we had and confirmed our feelings that Jia’s medical situation and prognosis were excellent.  She also consulted with a pediatric cardiologist and he also give us a good report.  So we were left to make a decision that had the potential to totally change our lives.

Dang Jia Qi 10.15.14

Of course, this all happened during one of the busiest weeks of our year….  I had a late work event, Josh had late meetings and activities, my mom and I went to Columbus (and, by the way, I did not breathe a word of this to anyone… so imagine me, the worlds worst secret keeper, having to spend 4 hours with my mom, to whom I tell just about everything, and not being able to talk about the only thing on my mind!  It was rough, y’all.), and by the time we had a minute to really sit down and hash things out, it was Thursday night at 10:30 and we had to make a decision by the next morning.  Making a decision like that feels like holy ground, and we certainly didn’t make it lightly, but it wasn’t a hard decision in the end.  I think we both knew nearly from the minute we saw Jia that she was our daughter.  So our conversation was more “how did we get so lucky?” then “should we say yes?”.  We had said yes in our hearts a week before, it just took a while for our brains to catch up.

Dang Jia Qi 10.15.14 3

So, the next day, we called our agency, and said “she’s ours!”.  We had to fill out some additional paperwork, write a letter of intent stating that we understand her medical needs, and have a plan to care for her, and submit some basic family information.  Once we sent that in, her file was “locked” which means that no one else could see it or request it, and then all of that information was submitted electronically to China.  We were told to expect not to hear anything back from them until after the new year, but the day after Christmas, we got our Letter of Acceptance and it because unofficially official (it will become really official once we have our dossier to China)!!


As far as what changes, our process is now quite a bit expedited, and we are expecting to travel no later than August.  That means we’re working like mad people to get all of our documents to China and our dossier completed, we’re trying to figure out our fundraising plan on an expedited timeline, and we’re are nearly out of our minds with excitement about getting to meet our sweet Jia.


So, that’s what’s been going on behind the scenes, friends…  what a ride!