Year of the Pig...Maybe even a golden one

Will our baby be born in the Year of the Pig?
Many people are acting on a belief that 2007 is not only a Year of the Pig, which comes along once every 12 years, but a Golden Year of the Pig, which comes along once every 60 years and showers extra-powerful blessings on those born during its passage. But cultural researchers have said that belief was mistaken. This year is not golden, it is earthen. The last Golden Year of the Pig was 1971, and the next one should be 2031, with 60 years as the full cycle. (Washington Post)
The Pig type is usually an honest, straightforward and patient person. They are a modest, shy character who prefers to work quietly behind the scenes. When others despair, they are often there to offer support. This type of person is reserved with those they do not know too well, but as time passes and they gain confidence, those around them may discover a lively and warm-hearted person behind that mask of aloofness. Despite those born in the year of pig having a wide circle of friends and acquaintances, they have few close friends who understand them and share their inner thoughts and feelings. It is easy to put trust in pig type; they won't let you down and will never even attempt to do so. Such people simply want to do everything right according to social norms. It is important to remember that these people are not vengeful creatures. If someone tries to take advantage of them, the pig type tend to withdraw to reflect on the problem and protect themselves. All they need in such situations is a little time to find a constructive way to respond. The people of the pig type are conservative creatures of habit. They dislike being made to travel too far from familiar surroundings, unless it is a trip to the countryside. They love nature and are never happier than when they are out somewhere, far from the city. There is a tolerant and peaceful side to their character. Such people are never afraid to allow others their freedom of expression; they do not want to cause arguments and if there is any way to avoid arguing, they will probably take this option. They are not weak, however, and if the situation forces them to fight these people will rise to the occasion, whether it is to defend themselves or those close to them. (
Thank you Nonnie and Poppie for the beautiful golden pig!

The Journey

In this journey each is a "baby" step in what feels like a marathon.

December 20, 2005: Application to adopt sent to Harrah's Adoption International Mission

January 3, 2006: Email received stating that our application had been accepted

January 14: Registered with Harrah's AIM, Adoption and Post Placement Agreements signed

***Gathering of documents begins, all which needed to be notarized and sent to our Dossier Consultant Teresa in Long Island to be reviewed, verified, and authenticated (with the County, State, and Consulate)

February 17: Medical Exams, covering every aspect of our beings

March 4-5 and 25-26: Our Social Worker Robin makes 4 visits for our Home Study (she rode all the way from Long Island to visit us)

***One month wait for NYS to process and give us child abuse and criminal clearance

April: Home Study completed and mailed (arrived at USCIS on April 20)

April 19: Applied to United States government for Advanced Processing of Orphan Petition (I600A) and fingerprinted at United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in Buffalo

May 5: Notice of Favorable Determination (I-171H) granted
"YOUR APPLICATION HAS BEEN APPROVED FOR TWO CHILDREN " (need to be prepared if we get twins)
EXPIRATION DATES: Finger prints 7/18/07
I 600A 11/4/07

June 2: Dossier sent to China (Date To China, 6-2-06)

June 7: Dossier Logged In, Log In Date = LID, 6-7-06 our referral will be made by this date

January 12, 2007: Brown Envelope received. This contains verification that USCIS has sent notice of our approval and our child's Visa application

Faith Teaches Us

Since educating others is what presently one of us lives and breaths for, we have decided to share the knowledge we've gained on this journey.

What we thought:
* Our child is waiting in The People's Republic of China and we'd have (her) home within one year.

What we've learned:
* We will become a family maybe within two years.
* China moves at an unpredictable pace.
* No matter how fast you work there are elements beyond your control.
* More people are excited about our baby than we ever imagined.
* Patience.

What we know for sure:
* If God brings you to it. He will bring you through it.
* Our family will be "Made in China".
* Faith and love are believing in something bigger than yourself.
* What it means when they say we are all a small part of something bigger.