LOA, part 2!

So, after the exciting news that we were
LOA
sunk in yesterday…
We started filling out forms and collecting documents so we could
submit our
I 800 to US Immigration.

Remember the chocolate cake?

Then today, our LOA arrived after being overnighted to us
by our worker at Lifeline in Alabama.
The hope was that we would be able to overnight everything right back to
her today.  Becca informed us that the UPS Store’s last pick up
for delivery tomorrow was 6:00pm tonight, so after Jason got home, we quickly finished gathering, copying, scanning, and signing and jumped in the car!

UPS1

We arrived just in time!

UPS2

Next on the list?
A home visit Wednesday morning from our social worker at
Lutheran Family Services to update our homestudy!

LOA!!!!!

We have some exciting news from our worker at
Lifeline today!!!

We are officially
LOA!!!

On July 24, she gave us the great news that we were officially Match Reviewed.
This process only took 4 days, she had anticipated it would probably take a couple weeks.  At that time, she told us to expect our LOA (Letter of Approval)
to arrive from China in 1-2 weeks…
It arrived today -
4 days later!!!!

At this point, we can anticipate traveling in 2-3 months…
2 months is the end of September!!!
We have a lot to do in the next few months!

cake

(Warm chocolate cake definitely helps when working on US Immigration forms
after 10:30 at night, just saying.)

On another note, people are often curious when we will travel, how long our trip will be, and how much the China adoption process will cost from start to finish.
Today’s news and events of last week are great reminders that we just don’t know.
Dear friends of ours have been in China this month to bring home their new daughter.  They anticipated staying the expected two weeks and traveling home last Thursday.  They found themselves unable to leave the country, even though everything that China requires had been completed.  They along with many other families did not have VISAs for their newly adopted children.  Due to a computer problem in Washington DC, no VISAs were being issued by the US Consulate in China (or anywhere else in the world).  The hold up meant several more days in country (additional expenses incurred for food, lodging, plane tickets that needed to be changed) before being able to start their trip home around dinner time tonight, which will be early in the morning on Tuesday according to their time there in China.  Sometimes things happen slower than expected, sometimes they happen more quickly than expected – we hope to be prepared and grateful in any circumstances,
either way!

“…give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
1 Thessalonians 5:18

 

 

 

Thank you!

thanks4

Thank you so much to all who have contributed,
Lucy Joy’s Coming Home Puzzle Project is complete…
and then some!

Here is Spencer’s version!

happy

If you would still like to contribute to help bring
Lucy Joy home from China,
you can continue to use the paypal button in the sidebar.

Also now available, is a tax deductible option by giving to Lifesong for Orphans
and specifying “Rothfuss” as the family name and “4413″ as the family account number.
To give online, go here and choose “give to an adoptive family.”
To give by check, send to:
Lifesong for Orphans
PO Box 40
Gridley, IL  61744
(mention “Rothfuss” and account number “4413″ in the memo line)

Almost Done!

 

PuzzleJuly2We are so excited to share that Lucy Joy’s Puzzle Project is almost complete!
Here is what the nearly finished puzzle looks like now…

Lucy's PuzzleAnd here is a peek at the back of all those pieces!
Lucy's PuzzleSo many kind friends, loved ones, and even people we have never met
are represented by the names written on the back of the pieces.

_MG_9438-4What a treasure this will always be to us -
and we cannot wait to share the story behind all of
the pieces of the puzzle with Lucy Joy!

In other news, we heard from our social worker today that
our dossier has been officially reviewed and is now
in the last phase called Match Review.
This phase will probably take a few more weeks.

Each and every step brings us a little closer!

ChinaMap

About Us

outreach8

Last week we participated in an
outreach to the refugee community here
in our city.

Although not directly related to our adoption journey,
it really gave us a feel for being in a different
context than we are usually in…
dear friends are in China right now…
We can’t wait to get there!

We have added some pictures from the week to the
“About Us”
page.  Many of them were on Facebook already,
but you may want to take a look!
*smile*

For (if we are) in Christ Jesus,
neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything,
but only faith activated and energized and expressed and working through love.
Galatians 5:6
Amplified

Yes!!!! I met her!!!

This week we are participating in an outreach with our church, but I just had to take a few minutes and share this story of God faithfully encouraging us and providing for us.  We are so grateful!

Many people have asked us questions concerning how much contact we are able to have with our Lucy Joy, what we know about her life right now, and if she knows we are coming.  These are all great questions, and often people look very surprised when we answer, “We don’t know.”

I have been combing the internet for information about Chinese adoption, travel in China, Baoji City, Guangzhou… Jason has detailed knowledge of these places from studying google maps.  Recently when we received new pictures of Lucy as part of an update from her orphanage, even though he has never been to China, Jason recognized the park she was in!

Sometimes in a Facebook group I am in or on a blog people will post pictures of their child along with other children who have not yet been adopted in hopes of advocating for them, helping them to find a family or perhaps find the family who is matched with one of the other children or who has perhaps adopted one of the other children.  We have 6 photos of Lucy, that is less than one per year of her age and they are all probably taken in the last 2 years. How many pictures do you think you might have of your 8 year old?  I could probably not even count how many pictures we have of each of our other children by the time they were eight!  As we have traveled this path to bringing our daughter home, each and every little bit of information and each and every picture has been a gift, a treasure to us and something that we can use to help tell her story with her, give her a history.

Last week, someone posted in the Facebook group I am part of that they had been to Lucy’s orphanage in March and would be returning in October.  She invited people to message her if they would like to know if she had met their child.  I decided to try, it was possible… I messaged Kelly, included a picture of Lucy Joy, and her reply was,

“Yes!!!! I met her!!!”

She kindly offered to speak with me on the phone and then graciously spent over an hour of her time speaking with me.  Imagine, out of 300 children at the orphanage, she had met and spent time with our daughter!  She was able to share with us that the orphanage has received word that we are coming and that Lucy knows she has a family.  God is so good, thank you, Lord!  Not only did we get to know more about our daughter, but she also shared valuable information about that will help us navigate our time in China.

We hope to be in China in October, but if we cannot be, perhaps our Sparrow will be able to participate in this amazing project called Their Vision is Valuable.  Please take a look, they are in need of sponsors to make this happen!

Ah, Sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm.  Nothing is too hard for you.
Jeremiah 32:17

Making Progress

PuzzleJune2

Big progress has been made on
Lucy Joy’s Puzzle Project!
We are so grateful to everyone who has sponsored puzzle pieces.
Thank you so much!

More than half of the puzzle has been completed!

Here is a peek at how the puzzle is looking now:puzzlepickjune

I think my favorite piece is this one with the little man who
is making his way home…
Just like our Sparrow!

puzzleman

If you would like to help complete Lucy Joy’s Puzzle,
you can use the paypal button in the sidebar and
if you would like to read our original Puzzle Project Post,
you can do that here.

P.S.
We are still nesting!
nestingboys“building shelves for the girls’ room”

nestinggirls
“making room for our new sister”

Pictures!

 

 We received our update on Lucy Joy!

They say a picture is worth a thousand words…

LucyJoyPark

LucyJoyMarket

Isn’t she beautiful?

We also appreciate the words that were sent in answer to our questions.
We learned that Lucy Joy is 120cm tall (or 47.2 inches) and weighs 20kg (or 44 pounds),
and that she likes fruit and yogurt.
We have also learned that our Dossier has already been translated
and is now being reviewed.

It seems as though our paper work is speeding along and we cannot wait
to meet our Sparrow and learn many more things about her.

If you would like to help bring our precious daughter home,
there are still puzzle pieces left to sponsor in
Lucy Joy’s Puzzle Project!

The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.
1 Thessalonians 5:24

through the power and strength of Christ

Wisdom from our social worker, Meagan,
at Lifeline Children’s Services…

“While it is important to try and process as much education as you can before Lucy Joy gets home it is good to remember how you will implement that education. It is through the power and strength of Christ that your family will be able to implement those resources and education in a way that brings glory to Him. I love adoption because it is the perfect picture of what Christ has done for us. He sought us out and pursued us even though we fought and pushed away. That is exactly what you will be doing with your sweet daughter and it will definitely take Jesus being in the equation like you mentioned.”