|[When I wake Jake up for school in the winter, he always wanders out and ends up here while I'm waking up his sister.]|
We got a wonderful surprise in the mail Saturday....our passports arrived!!! It felt like another very big step forward to finally have them in our hands. I flipped through all those empty pages, just waiting to be stamped as we enter Arnold's country!
Our first home study visit went great. Our social worker is very nice, and is excited to do an adoption through Reece's Rainbow. We spent a lot of time talking about why we want to adopt, how we "chose" Arnold, and what kinds of issues/questions we had. She is coming again tonight to talk about our autobiographies (we had to write them up as part of the home study paperwork) and parenting plan (okay, how many of you have a "parenting plan?" It kind of makes me laugh, because if there's one thing I've learned in the short 8 years I've been a parent, is that you can't plan anything! Life is full of twists and turns, which is what makes it so great. But I know she just means in general, how do we parent, what are our values, priorities, etc. The term just made me laugh.
I also received a wonderful note this weekend from my grandma, with a very generous donation to help bring Arnold home. I just can't say enough positive things about my grandma-she has been a very important person throughout my life. When I was little and my dad was very sick with cancer, we spent a lot of time at her house. It was easy to forget the troubles at home when you're surrounded by unconditional love, homemade play-dough, and freshly baked cookies :) Grandma still to this day always makes sure everyone leaves her house well fed and well loved. Her initial response when we showed her a photo of Arnold and told her he was going to be her new grandson was, "wonderful! I will love him just as if he were born into our family! There is no difference!" What else can I say? The best grandma ever!
You may have also noticed that our "chip-in" has gone up a lot in the last week or so. My mom made an incredible donation, as well as my new friend in Colorado. I have a hard time trying to piece together words to convey the gratitude in my heart, but I feel so blessed and humbled and warmed inside when I think of it. I know we all work so hard for the money we have, and there are many things we want to do with whatever "extra" we have. Sometimes these donations come when there isn't really any "extra" at all, and so I want you to know how much it means that you are willing to sacrifice on our behalf, because you believe in us when we say that this is our child, as much as any that I gave birth to. We love you so much.