We are making good progress on gathering our dossier paperwork. This week we got one letter of reference and employment letters from church for Aaron and our accountant/tax preparer for me. On Friday we had planned to make a day of getting several things up in Newport (nothing brings freelance work pouring in like having appointments to keep).
Our day involved getting the car ignition looked at (yep, it's messed up), getting passport photos taken at Rite Aid, picking up photos and other things at Wal-Mart and Staples, going to City Hall and learning that the courthouse is a different building (oops), and going to the courthouse and requesting our criminal checks, house deed, and passports. Unfortunately, they noticed that our passport photos weren't done right, so we had to head back to Rite Aid. Now we know why my dad calls it Wrong Aid. As we're driving up and down the hideous part of Highway 101 that's all strip malls and fast food (like 28th St. in GR), the bank sign tells me its 95 degrees. Since 75 is a warm day here and 85 is a heat wave, plus I was hungry and annoyed with Rite Aid, I was getting kind of cranky. But a snack from McDonald's and a free drink from Rite Aid to go with our reprinted photos and I felt better.
Back to the courthouse we went, and the nice lady got our passports finished up. I felt pretty dumb taking that oath with my right hand raised and my left hand on my checkbook, but whatever makes Uncle Sam happy. Then she said, "Now you just have to get your blood drawn at the lab and bring that back . . ." Aaron said, "WHAT?!" He fell for it big time. But she was just yanking his chain and truly very nice about it all, as was the woman across the hall who had the criminal check letters done by the time we checked back (at least the Rite Aid delay was good for something).
The day yielded 2 major documents plus the passport applications. That's a good feeling! Unfortunately, when we learned we would not be assigned a passport number until our passports actually come, we realized we had to pay $120 extra to have them expedited so we can get the number to put on another letter that goes in the dossier. Ah well, at least we will not have to order another copy of our birth certificates since we'll get the copies that went with the passport application back in two weeks. But the birth certificates would have been cheaper. See how confusing all this is? Expensive, too. I laid out $408.95 in two days.
While we were out chasing papers, the couple we met recently who were waiting for their referral got it! He's three months old and his name means "Be a hope." Like us, they are young and it's their first child, so I'm hopeful we'll get a very young referral too, as our social worker said was likely. Every referral story and picture makes it seem more real!
Question for the day: What should we do to celebrate when we have the dossier complete? (Bonus points if you can come up with something cheap, for obvious reasons!)