I have a new favorite color

June 28, 2007 at 6:41 pm | Posted in AdoptThis!, M'ijo | 68 Comments

It’s PINK

Embassy appointment, according to the folks at the USE (GAL has not called yet) is July 11!

WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

Homecoming a couple of days after that…

More later after I climb off of my cloud.

My brain has turned to mush

June 25, 2007 at 9:26 pm | Posted in AdoptThis!, All Consuming | 29 Comments

I’m sorry for the lack of updates…

We’ve been running around frantically trying to get ready for the supposed arrival of a Real Live (and probably crawling) Baby in these parts.

I spent the weekend painting over the world’s Most Hideous Wallpaper in the room formerly known as The Guest Room, much to the delight of Tía D., who frequently occupies said room, and has been trying to get us to paint it for four years now. Pili was out of town, and probably thought I had been running around auditioning for girls gone wild due to my utter inability to concoct some plausible story about what I was doing with myself all weekend long. Witness:

Before Wide view
BEFORE AFTER

Do click through to flickr to appreciate the teal and pink splendor that was our guestroom. I picked out a light yellow for the walls because there are going to be a lot of bright colors in the room – the crib is going to be painted a nice lively red color, and the glider chair is also a big splash of red.

It looks a hundred times better. Tía D., I apologize for all the pastel-dinosaur nightmares you’ve had over the past four years.

Still no solid word on when that arrival will take place. GAL is expecting to hear about our embassy appt on Wednesday or Thursday, which means that a) GB’s firstmom has signed off for the last time, b) his new birth certificate and passport have been issued, and c) all that has been submitted to the U.S. Embassy for a visa (pink slip). If you hear a loud shriek coming from the northeast late weds or early thursday, it means we have an embassy date.

I alternate between wanting to be minimalist mom: changing table, who needs a frickin’ changing table? and coming with up arguments for buying absurdly expensive strollers and other baby accouterments. I’m nervous that my “no showers til we’re out of PGN” attitude means that we’re going to wind up buying all our baby stuff ourself… which gawd, could I be more of a spoiled brat? And could this post be any more boring? And what kind of stroller should we buy?

A boo & some cheers

June 20, 2007 at 9:52 pm | Posted in Linky Love, Political Animal | 8 Comments

Boo: President Bush, I don’t support your dumbass war. If I had any choice at all, my tax dollars would not be supporting the murder – that’s right – murder – of our young men and women and of innocent Iraqis who have the nerve to do something ridiculous like go out and buy groceries at the market. So how do you justify telling me that my tax dollars can’t be spent on stem cell research that could save my life, because “Destroying human life [embryos which have not been transferred into a human uterus, let alone successfully implanted and developed into blobs with beating hearts] in the hopes of saving human life is not ethical.” Now remind me what the hell this war is supposedly about?

Cheer: To the NYS Assembly, which passed a bill to allow same-sex couples equal access to marriage by a bipartisan vote of 85 to 61. State laws don’t grant us access to the most important legal benefits of marriage, but they’re certainly a step in the right direction. C’mon NYS Senate!

And Another Cheer: To the much deserving Sofia, who is OUT OF PGN! Hip hip hooray!

And Another Long Overdue Cheer: For Dis, who very generously donated a Children’s Place gift card to Operation Lifeboat. I’ve only been meaning to thank her for, oh a few weeks now!

But don’t you fret: Dannielynn pouts just like Anna. Just in case you were worried.

Shout Out

June 15, 2007 at 11:17 am | Posted in Linky Love | 3 Comments

I’ve been meaning to do this for several days now, but a fabulously funny real life friend of mine has started a blog.  Please go over to Missed Conceptions and give her some looooove.

Cloud Eight

June 15, 2007 at 1:57 am | Posted in M'ijo | 30 Comments

Every once in a while, in the midst of arguing about trying to figure out where we’re going to live and how we’re going to make this work, Pili and I look over at each other and one of us says: GB is coming home.  He’s coming home!  And we bust out smiling, almost as widely as this: 

Smiler

I think he’s smiling because so many of you were happy to hear that he was OUT of PGN!

For those of you in the “that sounds like good news, but what does it mean?” camp, PGN stands for Procuradoría General de la Nación. It’s akin to the attorney general’s office. PGN can approve cases quickly, or it can be a royal pain in the tuches, picking the world’s tiniest nits and making people redo documents over and over again. There’s very little rhyme or reason to it and no clear timeline.  I have heard of people getting out in three weeks, and people who have been in for over a year.  It’s totally unpredictable and absolutely miserable.

Once the case has (finally) been approved by the PGN, the firstmom signs off one more time. At this point, Guatebaby will be legally part of our family. This may very well have happened already by now.

The lawyer will request a new birth certificate with our last name on it (I really wish they didn’t do this – it’s as if they were trying to erase the people who brought him into this world) and apply for a Guatemalan passport for him. These documents are translated by an approved translator and submitted to the U.S. Embassy along with a ton of other paperwork to apply for a visa. The visa approval is issued on pink paper, so getting the visa approval, along with the date of your formal embassy interview, is often called “getting PINK.” The Embassy can, of course, do its own nit-picking and make you jump through a few more hoops before issuing the visa approval, but we’re hoping this doesn’t happen.

Hopefully within two or three weeks, we will know when the Embassy appt. will be. Then we will hie ourselves down to Guatemala, take custody of the Boy, and wait for the interview to happen and the final paperwork to be issued (another day or two). Then… homeward bound – possibly as early as mid-July.

We were under the impression that our file had been “kicked out” and resubmitted June 1. Normally, it takes 6-10 weeks from a resubmit to get OUT. So we were not expecting this phone call AT ALL.

So why not Cloud Nine?

As I mentioned in my deleted post on Tuesday night, our sweet boy has a big smooth bald patch on the back of his head. It’s not from lying on his back as he rolls over like a madman. We’ve gotten about six different explanations from the doctor, agency, and dermatologist they took him too, none of which really make any sense. [cradle cap, reaction to medicine for cradle cap, reaction to medicine for a rash on his neck, and “something fungal”] And we haven’t been able to get the full medical history we’d like to have in order to be able to bring the pictures to a pediatrican or pediatric dermatologist here. (If you are a medical professional who might know something about this and you’d like to take a gander at the pictures, please email me). Pili took the pictures with her when she went to the dermatologist today, and he said it looked like alopecia areata. This wouldn’t be the end of the world, by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s worrisome, and we’d like to figure out what’s going on.

Geez, this kid isn’t even biologically related to me and he may have autoimmune issues. Am I a bad influence or what?

Plus there’s the aforementioned two mortgages, one and a half jobs, situation to argue about discuss respectfully.

Oh My G-d!!!

June 12, 2007 at 9:17 pm | Posted in M'ijo | 91 Comments

I just posted this horribly mopey post which you might read on bloglines and then deleted it because… we got a phone call and…

WE ARE OUT OF PGN!

And Operation Lifeboat is going swimmingly!. We have raised enough for TWO MONTHS RENT FOR CHERI & ERIN. We are keeping the raffle and donations open ’til Friday and then we’ll announce the winners. Thank you all so so so much for your generosity.

Operation LifeBoat

June 8, 2007 at 11:24 pm | Posted in Linky Love | 6 Comments

I have been known to whine about our adoption situation. But the truth is, it ain’t that bad. I’ve had the privilege of getting to know both Erin and Cheri in person, and they are both such kind and generous people – as well as great moms. They are both down in Antigua right now – fostering their babies away from their families and homes.

Erin & Azucen@ Cheri & Eliana

They are also stuck in a bureaucratic catch22 that is hard to even begin to explain. Essentially, Erin, Cheri, and their families are caught up in a war of wills between the mayor’s office in Guatemala City, and my dear friends in PGN. They just received news of a major setback that means that they will likely be living in Antigua for at least another SIX months.

The babies are quickly approaching their 1st birthdays and Cheri & Erin have NO IDEA WHEN they will be able to return home with their daughters to America.

Nu… why am I telling you this? I’m so glad you asked…

Can you imagine the financial burden these families are facing? Cheri & Erin are making major sacrifices to be apart from their husbands & families. They have accepted legal responsibility as the foster parents of their daughters and cannot leave. They’re away from their work (and Erin is her family’s primary breadwinner) and are paying rent & utilities & all monthly expenses in Guatemala – which ain’t cheap. Plus, y’know, the mortgage back home.  Yeah, that old thing.

A bunch of fellow adoptive parents have gotten together. Our goal is pretty simple: We’d love to be able to pay their rent & expenses in Guatemala for at least a month or longer. They have never asked for help of any kind, by the way… but we know they are struggling.

We’re calling this Operation LifeBoat because Azucen@ and Eliana are the babies stuck in the same crappy boat… and we’d like to help bail it out.

The fabulous Tricia has put together a raffle to encourage people to donate and help out Erin & Cheri. She has $150 in gift cards to be won. And I’m adding in a $30 TarZhay gift card as well. And… something else is in the works from a friend who works at a very nice children’s clothing store…

Leave an encouraging message for Erin & Cheri here or at Tricia’s and you’ll get one chance at winning a gift card. Click on the button below and donate what you can through paypal and you’ll get SIX CHANCES at winning. You’ll also get a boatload of good karma.

ETA: I can’t seem to get the button to work… go to Tricia’s to donate!

Pity Party

June 8, 2007 at 10:14 pm | Posted in AdoptThis! | 5 Comments

Today has been a really rough day.

Four families from our agency with babies younger than GB are out of PGN.  I am happy for them of course.

But I feel so hopeless, helpless, and doomed.

Why me? Why can’t one fucking thing go smoothly?

I take that back: the close on the house in MUCDTR seems to be going quite smoothly. Unfortunately, they still don’t have funding for my job.

Five wishes for LGBT families day

June 1, 2007 at 4:37 pm | Posted in AdoptThis!, Political Animal, We are Family | 31 Comments

Family DayToday, I am blogging for all the LGBTQ people who want to have families or to have the families they’ve already got legally recognized. I am blogging…

…for those of us who are estranged from our families of origin because of our sexual orientation. May this year open their hearts  and let them see that loving well and being loved well matters most of all.

…for those of us who struggle to find love. May this year bring you the family of your choice.

…for those of us who long for the presence of grubby fingers and dirty diapers in our lives. May the doors of homophobia, infertility and beauracratic indifference* finally swing open and let us in – and SOON.

…for those of us who kiss boo-boos and wipe noses but are legally ignored as parents. May wisdom and common sense prevail over intolerance and hatred.

…for those of us who grow older living in fear of the financial consequences of an unjust system that won’t allow us to enjoy the extensive federal benefits of marriage. Again, may wisdom and common sense finally prevail over intolerance and hatred.

Mama & GB

Today I am blogging for him.

* We learned today that GB’s case was given a previo by the assessor (not sure when) and readmitted to PGN today. What a thoughtful 7-month birthday present from my friends in PGN.

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