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Happy birthday to me--I mailed our adoption application! We have applied for the Ethiopia program of Dove Adoptions International. It's a mid-size agency near Portland. We also have started working on home study paperwork for Sandy C., who is an independent social worker but has worked with Dove a lot.
Choosing an agency was somewhat difficult, but since only a few agencies are licensed for Ethiopian adoptions, our choices were greatly narrowed down. I got information packets from five agencies; two of them have waiting lists because their Ethiopia programs are growing so quickly. I got recommendations from people on online adoption forums. I read a lot and eventually called our top choices to ask questions about their programs and process. I won't get into detail here about why we decided on Dove beyond saying we feel comfortable with their program, their accessibility, their facilities in Ethiopia, etc. For you Reformed fans of Providence out there: Dove was the first agency site I ran into when I started thinking seriously about adoption and doing research. A hint? Ethiopia lodged permanently in my heart right then and there. Just took us a while to get to this point of applying.
We have also started on home study paperwork. Well, Aaron has. He spent a day cranking through his "homework" before Young Life camp. My parents have been here, so I have yet to catch up with him. Sandy may be able to come here for our visit around the second week of August. Yes, things are happening fast! Since the application is in the mail, assuming all goes well, the 9-month timeline clock starts now. Stay tuned . . .