Friday, July 17, 2009

The day we've been waiting for

This small little box contains all the information that will be sent to China for us to adopt Claire. All the months of collecting paperwork, sending off paperwork and trying to maintain a decent level of organization boils down to this one 2 lb. 6 oz. box. The anxiety I experienced when leaving the dossier at the Secretary of State's office pales in comparison to the anxiety I feel now handing over months worth of work to a FedEx truck. Hearing horror stories of lost paperwork recently DOES NOT help either!

So here is what is involved in a China dossier.
  • Intent letter to Chinese officials (basically says who we are, why we want to adopt and the condition/age of the child desired.)
  • Home Study (Refer back a few posts to see what all went into that. It was condensed into a 14 page narrative of our life; a bit weird to read.)
  • Birth certificates for each of us
  • Marriage certificate
  • Health examinations for each of us
  • Financial statement
  • Employment letter for J
  • Non-employment letter for me since I stay home with the children
  • Criminal history check for each of us from 3 states (states we've lived in within the last 5 years)
  • Copy of I-800a approval and affidavit that it is a true copy
  • 3 original letters of reference
  • 2 passport photos for each of us
  • Photos- couple, family, house exterior and house interior

All of these documents with exception of the reference letters had to be notarized, certified by the secretary of state and authenticated by the Chinese consulate. Documents from two states had to be certified by the county clerk prior to certifying by the secretary of state and one state had to be certified by the US secretary of state prior to being authenticated by the Chinese embassy. Confusing? I've kept a checklist and flow chart to keep up with it all. Oh, and we've gotten great use out the FedEx account we established a few years ago.

This afternoon I will drop off my 2 lb. 6 oz. baby with strangers and pray that she reaches the correct destination on Monday (FTIA). They will review it to make sure it has all necessary documents and everything is correct and if so they will courier it to China next Thursday. What a birthday present!!

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