Sunday, November 29, 2009

Thanksgiving Aftermath.

Thanksgiving was a great distraction. It was fun to be around family and have something to do. It is good to have a reason to clean the house. We did our Thanksgiving on Friday so Thursday was just a down day to clean and prepare. Friday was busy with family over. 17 total. Then Saturday was a good recovery day to clean up after so the house is clean.. again. Today is Sunday and I am so ready for it to be Monday again. No news since everything has been closed for Thanksgiving and the weekend. I am ready to hear some news again. I really think that next week is our week for TC. I was thinking about how I was going to stay busy and distracted. Well I woke up this morning with a cold. So I guess I will put my mind to getting over that. I don't want to travel with a cold.
This week we are waiting on a RH report which should come soon, I don't know if we will get video and pics like we requested before we get our travel call or not.
Monday I plan on brining Ethan to the doctor to have his ears checked again. He is waking about five times or so each night. I really want to have that taken care of before Jack comes home, yet the last set of antibiotics did nothing anyway and if he catches my cold there is no way he will improve with the ears thing. I am starting to think that this may have been his issue with sleeping all along. Maybe tubes are the answer I don't know. We don't usually go in for ear aches until they are bad enough that he is miserable especially with the chance of catching other things while at the doc.
Tuesday is off to the doc again for flu shots. They have a clinic that day so the kids and I are signed up to go.
Next weekend we plan on taking one last road trip before Jack comes home. We are not sure yet where we are going. We may end up in Aberdeen visiting friends, but they may have to work, so then our back up plan is to head down to Omaha to the zoo and to stay at the Holiday Inn with a water park. We have a free stay to use up before the end of the month so this will be a fun trip to take with the kids. We are kind of thinking that we may get a phone call on our trip. We got our referral on our trip to WI this summer. We got Jack's EP while on a trip to the cities a month ago, so we think if we take a trip we should get another phone call!!! Just maybe???
Our Packet 3 has been out for three weeks, it will be 4 weeks on Thursday. Average times from P3 to VI are around one month. So our P3 went out on 11/5 so we expect VI to be around 12/5 but that is a weekend. So next week we think we will get our TC! This is all guessing. It could take longer for P3, there has been some families with it out longer. With Jack's RH consult even though it happened quickly we do not know if it held up P3 being returned or not. Just a wait and see type of thing.
Allie made a taggie for Jack's Christmas present. She wanted him to have a taggie so she helped sew it on the machine, with mom's help of course. Here is how it turned out. It matches his baby blanket that she picked out too.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Some news!

We got word back from Korea today saying that Jack has already had his RH consult appointment. The report has not been translated yet so it is not ready to be sent to us but they said it should come soon. At any rate, we do not have to worry about his appointment holding up our travel anymore. Thanks for your prayers for a speedy appointment. Turns out it was done before you started praying! God is AWESOME!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Roller Coaster

After my emotional breakdown at Church today I thought I better get word out about all that is going on with Jack. We got a few medical reports that said that Jack is on target for everything except weight bearing. Then we got another that said he has something they call back knee. We were not familiar with the term back knee and neither was our doctor. We ended up doing a ton of research on our own and were not able to find much. Yet our biggest fears were that Jack would possibly have CP given his background yet after talking to mothers of children with CP we do not think this is the case. On his last well baby check it said they were going to do an "RH consult". After talking to some other adoptive parents with Children from Korea we assume RH to mean Rehab. We sent questions off to the Doctor in Korea last month to get some answers and clarify the information they sent. We asked if Jack was looking at being in a wheelchair, or have braces, or maybe just do some physical therapy to correct his back knee. On this month’s WBC it noted that he needed the RH consult ASAP. Why? Well it had been a month and he had not had it yet so the Doc was asking that it be done. He also jotted down that the thinks Jack's weight bearing issues would improve with physical therapy. (aka PT) So we assume that this consult was to verify that and set him up on a PT program. Sounds good right? Well medically we are very relieved to hear that his situation is most likely not as serious as we first feared. Yet... this appointment may prove to be an issue. Why? Because if it says he needs an appointment he will most likely get it before he is allowed to leave the country. As you can tell since he didn't have this appointment last month getting children into special appointments doesn't always happen in a quick manner. Travel has been held up for others waiting for their children to have appointments. So we fear that this appointment may hold up his travel until after Christmas. Our timeline as it was already beginning to get awfully close to the week of Christmas and now I fear with this added appointment on the list he just may not make it home for the BIG day.

Now... on to the "back knee" since I am sure some of you are very curious. Well it is described as the hyperextension of the knee joint when you look up the definition on the internet. Which in plain terms as far as we know.. just means that he is double jointed at his knee joint. So when he stands or puts weight on his legs they bend backwards. How much? We don't know. We assume it cannot be that severe or they would have diagnosed it sooner than they did. What do I think at this point? Well from the information we have been given from our doc, and the doc in Korea, I think Jack has the same knees as my brother and his daughter Autumn, my niece. My niece when she was little and would stand with us holding her, her legs would bend backwards at her knee joint. It actually looked very odd and looked painful to us, but never bothered her a bit, and her doc was never concerned about it. Furthermore it never affected her ability to walk and is not an issue today. My grandma tells me my brother's legs did the same thing when he was little. So am I worried? No not really. My doc says there are a lot of babies at this age that just don't want to put their legs down period. She assumes because his development in all other areas is right on target and he is obviously growing well, now 24lbs at 8 months by the way, that this is really not an issue. Could it be an issue? Yes. Is it likely to be an issue? No. He is creeping and crawling according to the report, and sitting up without assistance. So if he is doing so well and this is a minor thing, why did the doc bother with documenting it? Well Korea is very through with its medical reports for their children in the adoption process. They want every detail documented so that if an issue arises in the future they can say that it was documented. Because Jack has “weird knees” and is not weight bearing the same as other 8 month old children they do all they can to figure out why/get him caught up. I do not know if the Doctor even knows how close Jack is to travel. So that is not even on his mind. We hope that this week we will receive the photos and video to show what they are reporting so we can see for ourselves. It is hard to know from the two words of Back Knee what they are referring to for sure. Photos and videos usually come a few days after the medical report. Our agency has sent off the request for these if they have them, and has asked that their main priority is getting him home. If missing this appointment is not detrimental to his health. Yet others in the same situation have made this request and still the appointment was carried out and caused delay in the child's homecoming.
Pray that the appointments are done fast. He needs the consult, then visa physical, and his visa interview. Plus... Just to add to this list, it turns out starting in the month of November all children must be seen in person at the US embassy. So this too will add more time to our wait. We figured we would get a call within the next two to three weeks now we are not sure when it will be. The appointment for the RH consult was supposed to happen last month and didn't. So I am sure it is possible for it to take another month. Who knows?

It is all a guessing game and we get to be along for the emotional roller coaster ride. Pray for pictures and video, pray for fast appointments, and fast processing of his visa.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Lucky "8"

Jack turned 8 months old today. This is a lucky day for him. In Asian cultures the number eight is considered lucky. This is our lucky month! (We hope!) He is also considered lucky because he was born 8 lbs 8 oz. Double eights are considered twice as lucky!
Many have said that Jack is a "lucky boy" because he is going to be a member of our family. We don't see him to be lucky in that sense. Why? Because if Jack was not matched with us there would have been another family waiting further down the list that would be matched with him. He would have ended up with a family either way. He is not lucky in the sense that we have rescued him or anything. That isn't ture. Is Jack lucky to be a part of our family??? No. We are the lucky ones to have Jack.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Jack Jack Appleseed

I had to share this before I forgot to write it down someplace. My kids love the song Johhny Appleseed. They like it so much and know it is a prayer that they like to sing it at bedtime for an extra prayer. But.... Ever since we knew we were going to have a Jack Baby, they sing the words a bit differently. Here is how their prayer song goes.

Oh the Lord is good to me, and so I thank the Lord,
For giving me the things I need,
The sun and the rain and the Jack baby
The Lord is good go me!

Amen, Amen, Amen...... etc.

I hope Allie and Ethan always remember singing that every night waiting for their brother to come home.

I also hope Jack will realize how excited they are to have him come home. Ethan even tells random people we see in stores like the checkout lady that he is going to have a "Jack Jack" he is in "Koweea". Jack Jack is the name of the baby in the Disney movie about a superhero family called the Incredibles. Ethan knows that his Jack is not like "Jack Jack" but the name stuck. Ethan loves to look at Jack's picture and say "my Jack Jack". Allie told aunt Lara once that she doesn't like it when Ethan says it is "his Jack Jack" because it is "All of our's Jack Jack". Allie associates Jack with Christmas and thinks she is going to unwrap a present with him inside it. We are trying to talk her into just a bow. They both like to say when their brother drools on them or tries to crawl on them that they are going to say "Jack Jack Attack"

We have Packet 3

I called DC this morning and they told me P3 was sent out yesterday!!!!
You know all the paperwork we had to do to get this far? Well it is their turn. Holt Korea was sent a packet to fill out from the US Embassy in Seoul. It is the packet that ties up all the loose ends so to speak. Sometime between now and when the packet is complete Jack will have his Visa Physical. We will never see this packet, but once it is completed, Jack's Visa Interview is scheduled and we should receive TC right after that. It seems like it has been about one month give or take a week from P3 to the Visa Interview for other families in the process. Some people get a travel call within days of VI some actually the day of or I have even seen the day before.
To me right now I am feeling like 4 weeks is going to be so fast!!! But ask me again in two weeks. I don't think that the wait gets harder the closer to TC you get, like some say, but I do think it gets more stressful the closer you get. Maybe that is what they mean. Well... time to really dig deep and baby proof the house again. I’ve got to go through the kids toys and put away all the choking hazards and it is time to put safety plugs in all the outlets again.
I broke down and started buying things we need like bibs and bottles and I am even starting to think of buying some formula. It’s Jack Jack time.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Waiting for Jack #3

Plugging along on Jack's room. I was in love with a bookshelf I had seen in another nursery picture, so I told John I wanted one for Jack's room. I searched all over and was able to find it on Ebay in a couple listings. One was a guy in the cities who made them. I contacted him and he said we would not have to pay shipping if we picked it up. This was our best bet since we were going to the cities anyway. The other listing was from Pottery Barn so we all know what the price was like on that one. John finally took a look at the shelf and decided, because of the fact that wood was on sale last week, that he would make it himself. So $60 later we have the bookshelf I wanted. Ended up costing around $90 less than the one we were considering picking up in the cities. Sorry, I get excited when we save money on things like this. I am so grateful for my handy hubby! He has even started to stain it now, a job he originally said was mine, but he volunteered to do once the shelf was built. Here are some pictures of John's building the shelf for Jack. We hope he likes it. I joked with John saying that Jack can take it with him to college and when he gets married etc.



The back is not attached yet because it is easier to stain and finish it that way other wise good to go!

Jack has his Immigration permit!

We are three for three for trips! We took a trip at the beginning of August and got our referral, we took another one at the end of August and got a nice WBC report while we traveled and yesterday while traveling to the cities for our yearly get away/John's work trip to the MOA area we got an email! We were eating at Outback Steakhouse one of John's favorite places and I told him to check his email on his phone. I added... “It would be nice if you could find an email about Jack's EP or a picture or something.” and he said “OK how about EP” and he smiled!

The email stated that we actually have had notification of EP since 10/27 but it was delayed being sent to us since since Mrs. Lee in Korea, who usually sends them, was out of the office recivering from surgery for apendicitis. We actually knew of her illness already so we were not upset at all. Everyone says Mrs. Lee is the best in the world at what she does and we will most likely get to meet her when we got to get Jack! We are happy she was able to recover.

We expect to have word that our P3 or (Packet 3) has been sent from the US embassy in Korea to the HOLT Korea adoption agency to be completed. It takes average about one month from what i have seen on other's timelines for P3 to be completed. That is when the Visa Interview (which is not really an interview) is set up for them to review all the information, then most people get a call within days of that interview. So... This may mean that we are traveling late Nov, or early Dec. if all the cards fall right. If we have to sign a waiver for any medical conditions it could take two or so weeks longer. But still this puts us before Christmas like we hoped!

Only time will tell! But he has permission to leave the country!