*** Disclaimer: Incredibly long read, if you aren't interested in our next steps, back out now LOL :) ******
We are so blessed to have so many wonderful Friends and Family curious about where we are in our adoption process. I thought I might take a quick moment and post the next steps and a general outline of what happens next:)
We are currently starting our "paper chase" phase for our adoption. This is called our "Dossier". I won't go into the long list of documents that are needed, but most of the documents, after we request and receive them, will need to be notarized, certified and authenticated. The most difficult part is that some documents expire. Once we receive each document (if not already notarized, get it notarized) we send it to a government agency for Certification. Then once they certify it, they send it back. Then we have to send it to another government agency for Authentication. Then they authenticate it and send it back. Seems easy enough except certain documents have certain expiration dates, and trying to make all these get done in their correct time frame takes some effort:). We will have to have a notary travel with us to some things. Such as our doctors appointments for our health checks. A notary has to be there with us and notarize our doctors statements. Uncomfortable:) LOL :)
There are also forms that we have to fill out and send to various government agencies etc... I don't know all the details on this one yet since we are just getting started:). Our agency has a guide to help walk us through this difficult process. From all the wonderful mothers I have met that have adopted Children from China, this was their least favorite part. It's time consuming:)
While this is being assembled, we will be doing our Homestudy ( Homestudy goes in the Dossier to China). This generally takes about 2 months to complete. An agent comes to our home and they conduct personal interviews, interview our families and friends, review our finances and our home etc...
We are expecting to be done assembling our dossier and home study by September 1st. Then we submit our paperwork to our agency. They review it, and if everything is good to go, it will be translated and sent to the CCAA. Once the Chinese government reviews our documents and approves us, we will receive a LID ( log in Date). We are expecting our LID date to be sometime in September/October. This LID is what determines when the CCAA will match you with your child. Right now, if you are wanting to adopt a child with no needs, the wait is pushing 5 years. It's essentially "take your number and take a seat". The wait time for China's "Waiting Children" is signifcantly less. That isn't why we are adopting a waiting child, but it is a nice benefit!
Our agency will work on matching us with a child based on the needs we stated we would be able to handle, and we were approved for in our Home Study report. However, we do have access to the Waiting Child list. So, while our agency is looking for us, we can look ourselves as well:) If we find a little one that we want to adopt, we can request her file. Once we receive her file, we take it to a doctor for review...then decide if we want to move forward. If we do move forward, there are a few additional steps ( I'll go into that too when it comes) but generally it's 2-4 months until we fly to China to pickup our little one!
So, we could be matched and on our way to China in November/December. It all depends on how quickly we are matched or find our little girl:)
Wherever, Whoever, and how long we wait is all in God's hands, and we know since HE has control, it will go exactly as it's meant too :)