Tuesday, July 31, 2012

know more families

home improvements for a cause

Tomorrow we greet August, our 10th month in waiting.  So you could say that news of the EP submission was the end of our adoption "pregnancy."  We are very much looking forward to Gia's homecoming, but it's getting very overwhelming as THE day approaches.  So much to do!  We've cleaned her room out, painted, bought more clothes, and put together storage shelves and such, but that's just the beginning.  I keep thinking of all the little things we'll need to prepare for as travel approaches and it just makes me crazy, but in a good way.  Here we are, a couple with no children, traveling to a foreign country to get our sweet daughter who will likely be 20 months old by that time.  We have no clue what to pack or how to prepare for what she might need!  Ahhh!  Please don't hear this as a complaint...I'm simply giving you a glimpse of what's going on in my mind.  Our agency does a great job preparing us for travel and how to pack, not to mention all the friends we have that have walked this road before.  We'll be fine.  :)

I am happy to say that we can finally see the light at the end of the financial tunnel.  I checked with Holt today about our balance and it's a little less than what I thought.  We're definitely in the home stretch for fundraising, whew!  That's been the toughest part of this whole year!  We are still selling any t-shirts we have left and the puzzle pieces too.  One last fundraiser was presented to us by another adopting family just a couple weeks ago, and we had to jump on it.  If you are in Birmingham (or surrounding area) you have the opportunity to help Gia come home and get your house in order too.  Contact Precision (message me for contact info) this week and all proceeds will go to Gia.  Precision is owned by a guy we go to church with and his family is adopting too, so it makes it extra special to us that he's giving this week to Gia.  He can do literally anything you need.  We've used him for heating and air stuff, he's built retaining walls for friends, he's a plumbing expert, or can just screw in a lightbulb for you.  You name it, he can do it!  This fundraiser is for this week only, so pass the word quickly.  Make sure you tell him your with the Huguley adoption so we will get the Gia dollars.  :)

Sending Hugs

Monday, July 16, 2012

puzzle winner

51 puzzles pieces so far.  Keep 'em coming, everyone!  

I'm sure you're dying to know which picture we chose, right?

Well, the winner is...

It was fun to read all the texts, emails, and blog comments about the pictures you guys liked.  I liked them all, but at the end of the day Kevin and I both thought this one represented our journey the best.  The path, a little beaten but still beautiful, lined with cherry blossoms...perfect.  The only thing I'm not loving is that this pic is from Japan.  Oopsie on my part.  I thought they were all Korea pictures.  Oh well, the idea is the same.

This has been an intense year.  At the end of the day, we really can't complain because our adoption has been much shorter than most.  We were blessed with a relatively calm process, though we didn't know it at the time since this is our only experience.  Even so, there's been lots of (good and bad) emotions and we're glad to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  After she's home a new set of issues will surface, but right now we are focusing on getting her here!  

Only a few more weeks!!

I just placed the order for the puzzle, and I promise to update with pictures of the puzzle as we put it together with your help!

Sending Hugs

Thursday, July 12, 2012

EP is submitted

Gia's EP was submitted today!  

We got the email today.  I was at church working and I took a quick break to check my email and Twitter and FB....all the necessities, ya know.  Anyway, I saw that a Holt email had come through, which was odd because they normally update on Mondays.  Plus, I've been under the impression that we wouldn't have more updates until at least September.  Well, surprise surprise, Korea submitted another batch of EPs TODAY, and we were in it!   
I just stood there in the church hallway tearing up and trying to call Kevin.  It doesn't matter how long we wait, those big moments always catch me off guard.  Even though we know the news is coming, there's something surreal about actually reading it.  I'm sure the travel call will be the same, whenever that may happen.  

Which brings me to the FAQ section...
  • What does "EP submission" mean?
    • The EP is her emigration permit.  It's basically her permission to leave the country.    
  • How long does the submission take?
    • All we know is approval takes about a month.  Beyond that, who knows how long it will take.  
  • When will we travel?
    • It will be at least a month because her EP will have to be approved.  From what I understand, the travel call can happen anytime from approval to the end of the year.  My personal assumption is about 8 weeks, but it will likely be longer. 
  • What else are we waiting on besides the EP approval?  What takes so long to get the travel call?
    • After her EP is approved (about a month), we still have to wait on her travel certificate, visa physical, P3 packet, and visa interview.  We are not responsible for any of those things, so we're at the mercy of Holt, Holt-Korea, or the foster family to make sure those things are completed in a timely manner.  

Please continue, more than ever, to pray for Gia's transition.  This has been such a biggie to me in the last few months, and I continue to pray that God would prepare her for all the craziness that's about to happen in her little world.  We covet your prayers for our transition as well, obviously.  

Sending Hugs (sooner than later!)

Monday, July 9, 2012

cherry blossom choices

You know, girls always seem to have that certain high maintenance taste.  This fundraiser is no different.  Apparently there are no cherry blossom puzzles that meet all my requirements, so I'm ordering a custom one.  It ends up being about the same amount of money though, no big deal.  The fun part is that I get to choose the picture we use now!

Korea is home to the world's largest amount of flowering cherry blossom trees and they host several festivals in the spring celebrating its beauty.   (You can read more here.)  So naturally I found tons of great pictures from the Korean festivals, and now I can't choose which one to use.

This is where you come in.  Which picture should we use for the puzzle?

I'm going to order this by the end of the week, so send your vote in quickly.

And if you haven't sponsored a puzzle piece yet, it's not too late!  We have already had about 20 people sponsor!

Sending Hugs

Saturday, July 7, 2012

puzzle preparation

Happy independence week!  I hope everyone found lots of bbq and watermelon...yum!  

Alright, here's the latest details in our journey to Gia.  It seems that all the families through Oct 2011 have now been processed.  We sent our paperwork to Korea in November.  If everything falls into place (ha!) then we *could* be traveling as soon as October to get our sweet daughter.  Yay!  
While we are SUPER excited that our wait is coming to a close in the coming months, we are still facing an $8300 mountain.  This seems like a lot, I know.  As we look back over the last 9 months-ish it is so cool to see what God has done with the fundraising, so we can't really complain.  It is a lot to raise within just a few months, but we've come so far so fast that I just don't feel overwhelmed by it.  

With that said, I do want to launch one last fundraiser in an attempt to get this last bit taken care of.  I know we have lots of friends around the country (and some around the world!) that have followed our journey, and I think this is the PERFECT opportunity to incorporate those people especially.  

We are purchasing a 500 piece jigsaw puzzle to hang in Gia's room.  It will be of cherry blossoms because that has been such a sweet symbol for us throughout this journey.  Plus, we got this picture recently that just made us melt.  

See the cherry blossoms in the background?  
Doesn't she look like a little model??

So, the puzzle will be put together only when a piece is sponsored.  That's where you come in.  For $10 you can sponsor a puzzle piece and we will write your name on it as a reminder of who God used to bring her to us.  I cannot wait to pray a prayer of thanks over each piece as they are sponsored!  500 pieces at $10 a piece will get us pretty darn close to finished...hallelujah!

You can sponsor a piece via the PayPal "donate" button or you can message me for an address, if you'd rather donate that way.  Make sure you hit the "donate" button and not "buy now" or you'll be buying a shirt.  We do still have plenty of those too, but puzzle pieces are a good option for those of you that aren't t-shirt people.  

Please pass the word!

Sending Hugs