Thursday, December 6, 2012

Merry Christmas Isaac!

Last Christmas we hung Isaac's ornament on the tree, thinking.....surely he will be home next year.  Here we are a year later and hanging the same ornament and thinking the same thought.  We are so happy for the progress that we have made with our adoption process but we are impatiently waiting for his homecoming.  The holidays are especially difficult to be away from your child but we know that it is God's timeline...not ours!

Isaac has been very healthy this past year and gained ten pounds since arriving at the orphanage.  We are so happy that he is getting such great care, being fed very well and even getting to attend school. 

Isaac in his school uniform (front right with hands in pocket).
Please pray for swift movement with our adoption process. Pray that Isaac knows we are coming back. 

Merry Christmas Isaac!!! We love and miss you!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Our week in Haiti!!!

We just returned from a very busy week visiting Isaac and completing several more steps in our adoption process.  We arrived to the Guest House on Saturday, 8/11. Isaac was standing in the foyer as soon as we opened the door. We just hugged him and couldn't even speak due to the overwhelming emotions!  Shortly after we were escorted to our room, Isaac thought it would be a good time to take a nap. 

  Sunday, we rode to church in a Tap Tap which is a very common form of transportation in Haiti. Isaac was scared and cried part of this trip.

  Monday, we left Isaac at the Creche so that we could go to the US Embassy in Port-au-Prince to file more adoption paperwork. We completed this step and were assigned a Birth Parent Interview for September 17th. This is when the birth parents will be questioned by the Embassy to make sure that they understand and want to give up their child. 

  Tuesday, we had an appointment in Lower Court. We met the birth parents and were able to ask them questions. The parents are now separated and Isaac is the only child that they have together. His father is a farmer which is a very difficult profession in Haiti because much of the ground is rock. The mother is currently unemployed just like 70-75% of the people in Haiti. They wanted to make sure that we were a Christian family who would take care of their boy. At this point the tears were flowing as I assured them that this was the case. 

  Wednesday, August 15th was Isaac's 3rd birthday! We were able to relax that day and just spend time with Isaac. He loves to play cars, blocks and throw balls.  We also took him swimming which he LOVED!!!


  Thursday, we went to Higher Court. There are no appointments for this court......it's first come, first serve. We arrived early and were told that the judge had a meeting and had not yet arrived. We waited almost 4 hours and he was so busy that he just reviewed our Dossier, signed the papers and never laid eyes on us....that's Haiti for you!!! :-)

  Friday was the day we left. We spent the morning playing with Isaac and walking around the grounds. He loved to wear his backpack!
Isaac is a very happy boy and has the cutest giggle!!!
Then it was time for us to leave. We had a very productive week and a wonderful time bonding with Isaac. Please continue to pray that our adoption process will be swift.

Updated Adoption Cost Breakdown
Agency/Orphanage Fees (www.newlifelink.org): $11,000 (paid)
Home Study (application, 2 visits, and background cks): $1,646 (paid)
In-country fees (Consulate of Haiti legalization): $100 (paid)
INS fees: $890 (paid)
Notarization/Authentication: $10 (paid)
Translation Fees: $250 (paid)
Psychological Evaluation: $150 (paid)
Marriage/Birth Certificates: $26 (paid)
Passport photos: $22 (paid)
FedEx Dossier to Haiti: $121 (paid)
Visa/Passport for child: $400
Travel First Trip: $2,000 (actual cost $2,465)
Travel Second Trip (including airline ticket for Isaac): $2,500
Total Estimated Adoption Cost: $19,123 (paid to date $16,678.13)
 
 
We thank God for faithfully providing for our family as we complete this adoption journey.

Stacey and Keith



 

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Time to travel!

We have had a very busy few weeks preparing for our first trip to meet Isaac. On July 13, our paperwork came out of IBESR (Haitian Social Services) where it was stuck for 6.5 months.  Our flight leaves early Saturday, August 11th. We just can't wait to see Isaac for the first time! I tear up every time I think about it, so I'm sure there won't be a dry eye that day! 

Next week will be very productive. We have an appointment on Monday, August 13th to file paperwork with the Embassy so that Isaac will be a US citizen when he comes home. On Tuesday, August 14th we have a court appointment and hope to have another court appointment during the week.  August 15th is Isaac's birthday!!!  We are so excited to be able to celebrate with him as he turns 3 years old. Our return flight is on Friday, August 17th. 

We would appreciate your prayers as we travel, complete necessary adoption paperwork/appointments and spend time bonding with Isaac. We will share tons on pictures when we return.

M├Ęsi,
Stacey

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Following His Footsteps

It's Father's Day!  Wikipedia defines it this way: "Father's Day is a celebration honoring fathers and celebrating fatherhood, paternal bonds, and the influence of fathers in society." Today I can't help but think of what a great father Keith will be to Isaac....just as he is to Elizabeth and Eric.

Recently we got the opportunity to send Isaac a new pair of tennis shoes.  I purchased the shoes not realizing that they were the exact same shoes that Keith wears. :-)  I figure we are preparing him to follow in his Papa Blanc's footsteps.

Isaac wearing his new shoes.  


We do not really have an adoption status update.  Our paperwork is still in IBESR (social services dept in Haiti).  Every other week, our representative goes to this office to see if our paperwork has been signed.  Each week we wait for the email that our paperwork is approved and that it's time to make our first trip to meet Isaac. We will not be able to bring Isaac home on this first visit, however we will be able to go to court and file more paperwork.  Please continue to pray for our adoption process.  Thanks, Stacey









 




For God called you to do good, even if it means suffering, just as Christ suffered for you. He is your example, and you must follow in His footsteps. 1 Peter 2:21


Monday, May 21, 2012

Another Successful Fundraiser!

We had a very successful Adoption Benefit Yard Sale in Louisville, Kentucky. We appreciate all of the hard work that our family put into organizing this sale. We raised $770. Thanks guys for helping us bring Isaac home!!!

We are so blessed to have a wonderful group of fellow adoptive parents who have kids at Isaac's creche. We go to church with a few of these couples and are able to send items to Isaac when they go. Last month we sent a couple crib toys to Isaac. It's fun to see him hold something that we have touched....makes it so real! :-)


Please continue to pray for our adoption process. Our paperwork is still stuck in IBESR (social services dept) in Haiti. Praying it comes out soon so that the President of Haiti can sign it.  

Thanks again for your love and support!
Stacey and Keith

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Successful Yard Sale and new pictures of Isaac!

We were very pleased with our Adoption Benefit Yard Sale this past weekend!!!  So many friends and co-workers generously donated items for our sale. We raised $1,142!!!!! The larger items that did not sale, we are posting on-line so our amount raised will continue to grow! Our next yard sale is scheduled for May 12th in Louisville, KY.  
April 14, 2012
We want to sincerely thank all of you who made this fundraiser possible.  The day of the sale we were showered with well-wishes by many who stopped by to purchase items. 

Currently we do not have a new update on our adoption progress.  Just waiting and waiting...  We have been fortunate to receive a few pictures from other adoptive parents.  In several of these pictures, Isaac is wearing a Cookie Monster shirt.  We find this fitting since it has been said that his first English word will be SNACK!  If you know our family well, then you will agree.  HA!




This week another adoptive mom from our church is visiting the creche and will be loving on Isaac. We have sent her with a couple items for his crib and can't wait to see pictures of her visit!

We ask for your continued prayers during this long process.

Thanks,
Stacey and Keith

Monday, March 19, 2012

Update on Adoption Cost and Fundraising

Early in this process, we posted a blog listing our adoption cost breakdown. As we are chipping away at the expenses, we are able to edit the numbers to make it more accurate. The amount we need rose a little mainly because we figured out that Isaac needs a plane ticket to get home.....slight oversight! HA, HA!

Updated Adoption Cost Breakdown
Agency/Orphanage Fees (www.newlifelink.org): $11,000 ($4,000 paid)
Home Study (application, 2 visits, and background cks) $1,646 (paid)
In-country fees (Consulate of Haiti legalization): $100 (paid)
INS fees: $890 (paid)
Notarization/Authentication: $10 (paid)
Translation Fees: $250 (paid)
Psychological Evaluation: $150 (paid)
Marriage/Birth Certificates: $26 (paid)
Passport photos: $22 (paid)
FedEx Dossier to Haiti: $121 (paid)
Visa/Passport for child: $400
Travel First Trip: $2,000
Travel Second Trip (including airline ticket for Isaac): $2,500
Total Estimated Adoption Cost: $19,123 (paid to date $7,215)

Our paperwork is still in IBESR where it will eventually go before the President of Haiti for signature. As soon as we get out of that step we will need to send the remaining $7,000 fee to our agency/orphanage. Then it will be time to travel to Haiti to meet Isaac for the first time and go to court!!! We are very excited about this next step but realize that it is a very expensive step....about $9,000 for our fee and travel.

       
To offset this cost, we are planning two more yard sales!  Our first one will be Sat. April 14th in Hendersonville, TN. The second one is TBD in Louisville, KY.  Please contact us by FB or email kasmitchell@hotmail.com if you have items to donate!!! We appreciate those who have already donated items!

Please also consider donating by PAYPAL using the DONATE button or email me for mailing address. 


"Once our eyes are opened, we can't pretend we don't know what to do. God, who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls, knows what we know and holds us responsible to act." Proverbs 24:12

God calls us ALL to help orphans. He does not call us all to adopt; but he DOES command us all to care for the orphans in the world. 
 
Thanks to everyone for partnering with us on this journey!
Mitchell Family