Tag Archives: adoption journey



I’m not into numerology and I don’t have a lucky number but if I had to pick a number that’s been pretty special it would be “ten”.  God has chosen some special ways to use the number ten in my life.

  • March 10, 2007 Michael Luke and I got married.
  • November 10, 2011 Noah was born.
  • The tenth of every month Michael Luke brings me flowers… I forget nearly every month… honest.
  • July 10, 2013 Mother’s Choice matched us with Esther.
  • December 10, we received updated pictures of Esther with her Christmas dress.


  • January 10 we received our High Court Order for Esther. You know the little thing that says Hong Kong approves and we can come and get her… no biggee.
  • 10 weeks… the number of weeks it took us to get High Court Approval.

Yep.  Right as I had decided I probably wouldn’t hear from our social worker on Friday she surprised me with a phone call.  I love surprises!  Amidst all the excitement I was a little bummed at first because I found out we won’t be traveling a week later as we had hoped.  You see there is this little thing coming up called Chinese New Year.  You know… Just a little celebration where the government likes to shut down for a week or two and tons of people spend their holiday in Hong Kong.

I could hardly be bummed once I found out that we will possibly be meeting Esther February 10th.  It’s like it’s God’s way of reminding me that everything is happening in His timing and that He is in control.  Better Him than me.

I’m also thankful that we have a few weeks before travel.  It gives us time to do our research on the best flights and prices available.  Not that any of the prices are really that great when you wait until three weeks before travel to book an international trip.  I don’t recommend it.  We also have time to finish up our mud wall project and hopefully get the rest of the house in order.  Not to mention pack!  I started packing Noah’s carry-on a couple of weeks ago and plan to share what’s inside her bag before we travel and how successful it was after travel.

Next step… book our trip!  We hope to book our trip later this week but we are waiting on one final ok from immigration and DHR… seems there was a little slip up when we switched from Peru to Hong Kong but hopefully it will be taken care of quickly.  Let’s just pray our government can handle this in a timely matter.

Do you have a special number in your life?  A date, time, or place God likes to use for you.  Maybe you have some travel advice for flying/traveling internationally with a/two toddler(s)?  I would love to hear what worked and didn’t work for you and your little one while traveling.


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Family Friday: Approved!

I have been hoping all week that I would get to write this post.  The post letting you know that we have been officially approved by the Hong Kong Adoption Unit to adopt Esther!  I am beyond excited.

Yesterday morning our social worker called and caught me completely off guard when she let me know that she had received the news of our approval early in the morning.  It was such a great feeling to know that we had approval from both the orphanage and Adoption Unit.  We are really getting to adopt her… in a few months!

There are still a few more steps left to complete before we can travel but there is a slim possibility that we may get to go before the end of the year.  #PrayersPlease  Now we move onto the next step which is preparing our I800 for the US Government.  ML and I hope to knock that out this weekend so it will be ready to send at the beginning of the week.  Each new step gives me renewed energy to keep working hard and complete everything that is required of us.  We can do it. We can do it.  It’s also exciting to know that Fall is just around the corner and then it’s Winter. And with Winter comes Esther.  We are so close.

One of the exciting things about having official approval from the Adoption Unit now is that the caregivers at the orphanage will begin to tell Esther about us.  Remember that photo album we put together earlier this year?

adoption scrapbook

She will be getting that soon as well as a video of us.  I’m a little nervous about that part because we have to prepare a 6-10 minute video of us and our house.  I have been trying to get the house in order all day.  Not because I think she actually cares what it looks like but because our house has been so out of order these past few days that she wouldn’t recognize from the video when she gets here if I didn’t straighten it up soon.

In the video we will show her her new room.  Speaking of that I should show you guys her new room.  Esther and Noah’s room has changed a little over the Summer.  It’s not finished yet but I should show you some progress pictures.  Maybe I can take some while the house is in order. Maybe.  Back to the video.  We will also be introducing ourselves to her.  I am a little nervous about this part because it will be her first impression of us.

Please pray for Esther in the coming weeks.  Becoming part of a family and leaving the orphanage, the only place she has ever known will be hard for her.  She may not even be excited about us in the beginning because thankfully she has bonded and loves her social workers.  This is healthy and normal though.  It is good that she has already learned how to attach and while she will likely go through a grieving period once leaving the orphanage hopefully in time she will grow to love us and her new home.  These are going to be some big changes for a 30 month old little girl.

In addition to filming a video, and sending Esther the photo album we also get to ask questions about Esther.  I look forward to finding out more about our little girl and hopefully getting some more pictures of her or better yet another video.  We only have two videos of her. Each just a couple minutes long and there is no telling how many times we have watched them!  We just smile and fall more in love with her each time.

So just as a refresher this is what we have left.

Operation: Bring Esther Home

DTHK (Dossier to Hong Kong)- check
Dossier review from team at Mother’s Choice- approx.. 1 week
Dossier sent off to AUSWD (Adoption unit)
Dossier review at AUSWD  4-8 weeks
Follow up questions sent to family from AUSWD- can take several weeks to get these questions
Responses sent back to AUSWD- 2-4 weeks (of course, that is what they give you- you can respond more quickly) 6 week wait before we received final approval
Waiting period for referral begins:6-9 months (just be prepared for a shorter time frame in case)
Acceptance of referral  Because we matched with Esther who was on the waiting child list we bypassed the referral period and have already signed our acceptance of referral.  Yay!
Submit I800 for approval- 1-2 months
Approval received/ Article 5 issued from US Consulate in HK: 2-weeks
High Court for final approval- 6-8 weeks

I’ll let you know how the filming session turns out.  Watch out Hollywood!

P.S.- I was the guest post blogger at Alabama Women Bloggers yesterday.  Head on over to how an avid Ole Miss fan ended up Mississippi State University and what it’s like living as a MSU fan in the heart of college football country, Alabama.

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