I had a minor heart attack today when our permanency specialist called. She is visiting tomorrow morning to have us sign our adoption home study so we can actually have the adoption on November 7th.
She said “I’m not calling to cancel but I almost had to.”
I was like, oh crap. She knew she was taking our home study to the county next Wednesday but she forgot she was meeting us tomorrow to sign it so she was planning on writing it this weekend. Then she checked her planner and so she had to spend all day today finishing it up!
I told her we really appreciate it. She said she knew that and that is why she worked so hard to get it done on time!
I will really miss the ladies at our agency. They are all such great people.
After hearing from the Permanency Specialist at our agency last week, we got the packet of materials to update for our Adoption Home Study. We’ve already done the adoption training so we just have to read back through the information and sign. The paperwork to update our profile for the adoption is no joke. I am SO glad that I made copies of all the original paperwork that I sent for our first home study because this paperwork was very similar. Here is what we had to do, and I starred next to the items that were the same as the originals:
*Health History forms (this time including the three new children)
*CY131: is for the Pennsylvania Adoption Exchange, it is the family applicant registration/update form. We had hardly anything to update but some questions I elaborated a little more concerning the three children we have in our care
AAPI: Adult Adolescent Parenting Inventory. This was a multiple choice test asking about your beliefs regarding children, their care and punishment strategies.
So the only thing new was the AAPI, everything else was either identical to the first home study paperwork (reference, health histories) or we just had to add in a few things here or there for the three new children that we have. It just took a long time to re-write! I wished that my copies were better quality or I might have been able just to give her a copy. Or if I had typed it all the first round (don’t know if you can do that), then I would just have to add a little and print it off. Now we just wait to sign the new profile!
Last Thursday Hubby dropped off copies of our 2013 tax returns and copies of our most recent pay stubs/paychecks.
Friday I received an email that the doctor’s office had faxed over the letter that the agency needed.
Now I am just waiting to hear that we are approved!
In the mean time, questions to ask your social worker before placement…
Got an email from the foster agency yesterday. Remember that last form that had to be signed by the doctor and then we would be approved?
Yeah, now we have 3 more things we have to submit before approval!! It’s not a question of if we will be approved, but when.
Now we have to turn in a copy of our 2013 tax returns and copies of our most recent pay stubs to show that we are still working. Sigh. Wish I had known a week or two ago because I would have been able to do that quickly. We won’t be home until next Wednesday so I won’t be able to submit any of that until late next week. I guess we have to submit our tax returns because my Social Security Statement didn’t have my updated income for 2013 on it when I printed it out for the agency. Not sure why that is a huge deal since I already submitted my 1099 and we definitely qualify on my husband’s generous salary alone. But I will do it!
Since I am an independent contractor I don’t get pay stubs, I just get either direct deposit or a physical check in the mail. The agency said that I can make a copy of the most recent check and that will suffice.
Sigh. I thought we were ready to be approved!!
Yesterday we got to read through and sign our home study/family profile. I wasn’t quite sure of what to expect other than some mistakes. I was surprised by how thorough it was and how few mistakes there were! Other than a few typos there wasn’t anything in the profile that I needed to change or eliminate. There were a few questions our adoption specialist had, some clarifications and additions, but there wasn’t anything that I wished was not in the profile. The home study walked through the information from all of the papers we had turned in for the application, plus information from our criminal records, child abuse records and health histories. It listed our insurance policies and drivers license numbers. It went through all of the information we gave in our interviews pertaining to our family structures, discipline procedures, community involvement and desires for our future family. There was a complete section on our daughter and her understanding of the adoption process. I had a proud Mama moment because it stated that she has shown to be above average cognition. The profile also detailed all of our PRIDE training. The whole home study was all so positive, I couldn’t help getting chills! I only hope those that read it in the future are as excited about the profile. It is officially signed but we’re not quite ready for placement.
I have one more form to turn in, from a mental health counselor that I had a session with this year. My psychiatrist gave me the go ahead and so did my primary care physician but since I haven’t seen my mental health provider in over six months (since we moved), I need an updated mental health statement. I called yesterday but they won’t sign any forms. Sigh. So I’m talking to the manager of the counseling office to see if they can at least give me some sort of receipt showing time and date of session to prove that I am continuing counseling.
We walked through the house with the adoption specialist and she tested the smoke detectors and checked for a fire extinguisher in the kitchen. I asked her what we are specifically approved for, regarding age/number of children. She said whatever we wish. So that was pretty cool. She also spent some time with our daughter, who gets so excited when anyone from the Adoption agency comes to visit. Little One has to show off anything new since they came last. So she showed off her new remote control monster truck that she got for potty training. The adoption specialist was laughing at my petite feminine daughter with this big huge truck! But she’s so into it. The adoption specialist said that she needs a brother badly! We agree.
Hopefully I will be able to get that last paper in quickly so we can be officially approved!
One of the Adoption Specialists at our Agency is coming today to review our family profile, make any revisions, and have us sign. Then we are ready to accept placements! It seems so crazy to be finished with our approval!
I took a picture of the binder I’ve made out of all the resources we’ve been given thus far. There’s a tab for the Orientation Manual, PRIDE chapters, CPR training and a tab for the copies of everything we submitted for our application. This way we have everything in one place. I made copies of everything we submitted in case anything got misplaced or needed clarification. Hubby said that my mind is a scary place. But I’ll just go crazy if I don’t have it organized! All the information was in 20 different folders. Now it’s just in one spot!
Today we had our interview with the Foster Agency Director for our family profile. Once it is complete we will be able to read it before anything is published. We covered topics like who constitutes our immediate family and how are relationships with them have been and are currently. We were asked questions about our job history and education history. We answered about our history with special needs children. The director asked about our discipline policies and the policies of our parents. Overall, it wasn’t as in depth as we had planned but it was a nice conversation with the director. One of the questions did involve where our desire to adopt has come from. It wasn’t really a big deal and she didn’t ask any follow up questions so I am guessing we said what she expected.
We still need to do PRIDE training and we are waiting for all of our clearances and references to be returned. My mother was able to meet the director since she’s been in town helping after my surgery. It was a nice time and her next appointment is set for three weeks while we wait for everything to be returned. We will have the PRIDE training in the mean time. The director hasn’t let on either way whether we will be matched this summer or not, but it seems to me that they are pushing our licensing pretty quickly. We’re very excited!