Thursday, March 24, 2011

I600 (Immigration) Approval and 3 WEEKS?!?!

Today I made a phone call to our assigned immigration officer to inquire about our file status. Guess what? Our I600 was approved on March 21! And guess what? Our 171 (the official approval notice) came in the mail today!

Now for the real news. I e-mailed our agency with this update, as they need to communicate our approval date to the Korean agency to continue our processing. I got this e-mail back from the Korea program manager:
I've been looking at my files and it seems that the families who have been notified they can travel had their acceptance paperwork sent to Korea right around the same time as you and received I-600 approval about 2 weeks before you did. If travel keeps up like this you may be traveling closer to mid April.
Did you catch that last line? Mid-April. MID-APRIL. As in, 3 weeks from now. So if things continue as they have been in our agency's recent experience, we should get our travel call in about two weeks. And then we'll need to be in Korea within two weeks of that call.

Heads are spinning here tonight! (In a good sort of panic-induced way, of course.)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

the non-update update

I know, I know. Bad, bad blogger.

You'd think that if I am too busy to update the blog that I'd have lots of exciting things to report on the blog. Ummmmm, yeah...not so much.

On the Kamron front: no news. Nothing but a few pieces of paper from immigration saying they received our paperwork and are "processing" it. Hmmmmm, processing, eh? So I called them. Turns out we've been assigned an immigration officer as of today. I will say this for the non-Hague adoption processing unit, they do answer the phone. So my call gets transferred to our assigned officer who tells me, based on our case number, "Oh, you're part of this huge pile I got assigned today. Ugh. This stack is huge. Like 40 families. I'm sooooo behind."

Reassuring, right?

So I turn on my Jen charm. (Incidentally, if you've never before witnessed said charm, it do I say this humbly...powerful. Think Jedi mind tricks. Yeah, like

It goes something like this:
"Ohhhhhh, bummer. I know you probably don't hear 'thank you' enough, but there is not much better than getting that approval in the mail. Seriously, I know the paperwork end of your job must be so frustrating, but it's so cool that you are directly involved in so many families coming together. Not many people can say that at the end of a day. So, for what it's worth, 'thanks!' I'm just so excited to go get our little guy."

And she says:
"Wow, that's so nice of you to say. Well, I think I can get to you this week or early next. Why don't you call me mid-week next week and I'll give you an update on where I'm at. Hopefully you'll be all done. You can just call me directly."

So we'll see how long it takes to get that immigration approval...fingers crossed.

Besides that, we're waiting on a photo and narrative update and will hopefully have that within the next week or two. We sent a letter, photos and a Nedy original to our agency for forwarding to Kamron's foster mother. Nedy was so cute--when she found out I was writing a letter she said, "Ooooh, I have a GWEAT idea! I will send Kamwon's foster mudder a picture dat I draw myself!" and she returned a while later with a colorful masterpiece of random floating people holding balloons and walking floating dogs. Good stuff.

As for travel, we are still thinking early Mayish. Right now, in addition to the immigration processing here in the U.S., the Korean government is engaged in their process that will result in the issuance of Kamron's emigration permit and visa. We will only get a week or two of notice, so it will be frantic preparation time when the 'you can go now' call comes.

In the words of Nedy, "Oooooh, it's getting warmer outside! Dat means it's almost yitto brudder time!"