We have talked with many other adoptive families and have heard all kinds of stories of the Dossier paperwork.... it's the BIGGEST and MOST IMPORTANT document you prepare when you pursue an International Adoption. Some of the stories were how they knocked it out in "lightning time" and how "it was a breeze", "ya know no big deal at all"... to all out HORROR stories. Our journey was some where in the middle of the two, but closer to the "Oh my gosh, don't talk to me, I am loosing my mind, what did I do with that piece of paper" version. I know Philip is sooo glad that this paperwork found its way to the mailbox today. There was a LITTLE stress mounting between us this past week,(just a little, right honey?) and we both just wanted and NEEDED this journey to be complete. We finished our homestudy preparation documents in ONE week, so super overachiever like I am, thought THIS would be a cake walk. WRONG!
We practically had to do EVERY STINKING piece of our homestudy paperwork OVER. We learned A LOT about the notary process do's and dont's in Tennessee, we learned a lot about dates and signatures of dates,sworn oath wordings and I don't even remember what else!
Hats off to our girl, Sherry Cardwell, who is the sweetest gal and best notary this side of Nashville...She was sooo patient with us.... I THINK she is still talking to us after all of this! :) Let's just say she used a WHOLE LOT of ink from that stamp of hers!! :) Thanks again Sherry!!! You ROCK!!!
We had some documents that were done once, twice, thrice and lastly a 4th time. If I told Philip that he had to go back to Vanderbilt to redo his info one more time, I am not sure what would have happend!!! You know it's bad when your doctor office isn't happy to see you coming with another piece of paperwork for them to Fill out AGAIN!!... We are sooo glad it's ALL in the mail.
Please PRAY that it is all CORRECT and that it doesn't find it's way back to our home! :)
Caitlin and I assembled 4 sets of documents yeterday, making sure that each copy was the latest revison.... Man, I hope we got that right! :)
2 inches thick. Caitlin and I thought it would be FUN to measure this gigantor stack of paperwork for y'all to see! THIS is what we have been working on EVER SINCE we have been home from our Ethiopia trip (end of July). I AM an overachiever and those of you that got this done in a week or two are NUTS, LUCKY or something I shouldn't type!!(haha) :) Happy for ya, but man, I don't know how you did it!
This is the final COVETED State of Tennessee Seal that we got for the Power of Attorney and for our Dossier Cover Letter.... Gathering all of this paper was like a giant scavengerhunt! Got this today over my lunch break- that was our last and final piece of the HUNT! Had to get a county seal too, because of course, Tennessee is one of the States that requires BOTH!
This was my new friend, Ramona, who helped me get all of this paperwork into the mail and prayfully to the right people. By this point, my brain was fried, it was a zoo at Kinkos/FedEx(it was lunchtime), and I was barely able to fill out my address. I was so stinking NERVOUS I was going to do something wrong! Lord forbid we have to REDO anything because of my nerves getting in the way!
As I walked out the door of Kinko's I lost it! Tears streaming down my face!!! Of course they all knew that this was a monumental occassion for us--- I mean we were taking photos at Kinko's!! :) They were all wishing us luck and congratulating us.... I was a HOT MESS when I left there! I was soo happy, so relieved, so READY to get our little guy home! I think this was the equivalent of OUR FIRST ultrasound... We have seen him now, and we have done what we are supposed to get him, and so now we just PRAY that everything goes RIGHT from here on out. Tears of joy, my friends. Tears of Joy!
So here is what happens next (at least this is how I understand it) ( Lots of room in here for error folks- it's a LOT to figure out). Our paperwork went 2 places today. One set (originals) went to my "Assistant Stork" Courier service in Virginia, who will hand deliver it to the US Department of State and then later to the Embassy. Once everything gets Authenticated they ship the documents back to our agency.... My other package we mailed today contained 2 COPIES of the Dossier and went to our agency. Next week, our agencies husband will be traveling to Ethiopia, so he will take one of our copies over (while we wait for the Originals to be approved) and he will hand off to their people over there. They will begin to TRANSLATE our documents....soon to follow that will prayfully be the originals, once everything checks out and then we WAIT for the courts in ET to reopen. We THINK they are opening late September or the first of October.... Whew!If all goes well, then WE MADE IT!!! We were striving to have our paperwork sitting there, waiting on the courts to reopen!!! Ok, still we have to PRAY that everything was done correctly and we have NO corrections....Then once that happens we PRAY for the courts to OPEN so we can be assigned a court date. Also, we are mailing off the I600-A form in the morning- so let's hope we got that paperwork right too...
So next week our paperwork will be in ET (copies only), they will begin to be translated, our I600a will be sitting on someones desk AND our little Daniel Mamo will find out that we are going to be HIS FOREVER family!!! Next week is such a BIG week for our family!!!!!!!!!!! :) At last!!!! I know this is a LOT of work, but wow, he is SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO worth it!!!