The Abraham Family’s Journey to Russia to Bring Home Their Daughter

January 16, 2008

Picky, Picky, Picky ...

Sometimes it seems like the paperwork is never-ending. I think this is mainly because it has to be so precise. The Russian government is very picky. Our SW called me this morning to say she received my dossier package and she thought she had everything she needed. She also said that she had our number in her speed dial in case she had any questions today because our agency is very anxious to get our dossier.

A couple of hours later, she called and said one of our reference letters needed to be redone because they called me "Kim" instead of "Kimberly". Fortunately, another reference letter just arrived in the mail today -- and it said "Kimberly". (I asked for a couple extra reference letters to be sure I had at least three ready to go and just used the first letters that arrived.) So I immediately drove it to the post office so our SW will have it by tomorrow. That's all we need to be eligible to receive our referral. I know that later on there will be more documents required by the Russian judge handling our case, but we'll cross that bridge when we get to it!

The other picky thing SW pointed out is that our bank letter was notarized by someone whose commission expires in March 2009. That sounds like plenty of time, right? Wrong! Russian officials won't accept any document notarized by a notary whose commission expires within one year. So the bank letter is only good until this March. SW says that it will be okay for our first trip, but it will have to be redone before the court date on trip two.

SW did receive our TBI fingerprint clearance so at least they know we are not criminals! We're still waiting for the CIS clearance. I don't know why it is taking so long to process. We were fingerprinted on October 11, 2007. In late November, we got a letter requesting our updated home study. Everything they asked for was sent to them on December 12. It has been another month already. Good grief!

Our agency's website states: Time for referral: when client’s dossier is complete. Parents may travel within one month depending on how flexible they are.

Oh, we're nothing if not flexible! This is consistent with everything our agency has communicated to us since my first phone call to them in November. And even though I have no reason to doubt (or even question) that we'll have a referral in the next week or so, it all still seems almost too good to be true. I'm such a skeptic that I find it hard to make any kind of concrete plans until I have the referral information in my hands.

We've done a few things like asked our bank about getting crisp, new bills to take to Russia (yes, they are very picky about US currency too!) I also ordered a travel messenger bag for our trip -- to carry those crisp, new dollar bills.

It's like this but brown, not lime green.

The boys and I have been attempting to learn the Russian alphabet and some simple Russian phrases, but that is going very slow. We've had fun playing with the electronic translator that Martin ordered. But I guess my biggest concern right now is child care for the boys while Martin and I travel on the first trip. In that respect, I'll bet we are WAY MORE PICKY than the Russian government is about its paperwork!


Troy and Rachel said...

Sounds like things are moving right along!! The whole notary exp. date things can be tricky!

Chris said...

You will be paperwork professionals before it is all over!

Best wishes!