I think I've just resigned myself to the fact that these days I won't be blogging as much as I'd like. There's just too much to do!!! However, tonight, at 11:35 while Karl's watching National Treasure II, I can't resist as we've gotten two pieces of very big news.
First, (and this isn't one of the two pieces) our first t-shirt order went REALLY well. Thanks to my aunt and uncle's generosity with printing, we made over $500.00!!! The shirts look great! We are in the process of putting together another order and plan to get it to Three Cord for printing in the next week or two. This may be our last order, but you never know :) The above picture is from yesterday's pizza and movie night with Grandma and Grandad proudly wearing our shirts.
Second, WE GOT OUR I-171H in on December 31st!!!! This is huge. Originally, we thought this would come in February, so to get it on New Year's Eve was such a blessing. Now, I am frantically trying to get the last couple of things notarized and last reference letter in hand to send everything to the state department at the beginning of the week for certification of all our notarized documents. When these come back (should be in about 1 1/2 weeks), we'll have the final picture pages and copies done to send our dossier to America World, the Embassy...and Ethiopia! This will end the main portion of our "paper pregnancy" and will begin the months and months of waiting for that referral call. We're so close!!!
Lastly, we got a call from Lifesong for Orphans (formerly Life International) with word that we have been accepted to receive tax-deductible gifts from family and friends AND Lifesong is giving us a significant matching grant for money that people give!!! This is SO amazing. While we've applied for several grants, the fact that we're requesting a single, healthy infant girl from Ethiopia...I just didn't expect much, if anything. Again, WHAT A BLESSING. I always felt in my heart that God would provide...though I didn't know how...and this was just a piece of that puzzle.
Thanks for all your prayers. I've thought much in the last few days how smoothly everything has been going for us (very strange for an international adoption) and wondered what part of this is due to everyone's prayers. There is still such a long way to go, but I am as convinced as ever that God is walking beside us every step of the way and will continue to be faithful, even though we don't know what that will look like specifically. We're hoping to get a letter out in the next two weeks (on top of everything else!) sharing our hearts/adoption journey and FAQ. We are hoping it will shed a lot of light on where God has led us to this point. Blessings to all!!!!! We'll tell you when the dossier is in the mail! :)