Today we had our first home study interview!! This one took place at our agency's office, and it was a joint interview with both Micah and I. The questions weren't quite as bad as I expected, and overall I think it went really well. We found out from our social worker that the FBI did clear our fingerprints (yeah!!) so it's at least nice to know that we won't add extra time to our process by having to re-do them. I was kind of bummed to learn that the remainder of our home study process, up through being certified through the AZ court, will probably take 2-3 more months from now. I had been thinking that we would be able to submit our dossier by the end of next month, but it will more realistically be in March or even April. I think in my mind I am going to start thinking "April," just so I'm not being overly anxious about it... then if everything is completed faster than expected that will be a nice surprise!
We also received an email update from our placing agency today, that the adoption process in general in Ethiopia is slowing way down. I guess they are very understaffed for the amount of adoptions that are processed in that country, and things are just taking a lot longer than they were even a year ago. So, we pretty much just need to be preparing ourselves for what could be a long waiting game. It's at least comforting to remember that God already knows who our child is, and that ultimately the timing of everything will work out perfectly in His plan for us to bring THAT child into our family forever. I get so excited just thinking about it!!
Here's our timeline for the remainder of our home study (as of now):
Jan. 23rd - Bethany's individual interview
Jan. 28th - Micah's individual interview
Social Worker writes up most of the home study
February - Social worker visits our house to meet Eli, and have our final interview (pretty much just to fill in any holes in what she has written up)
Social Worker finishes the home study and sends it to Holt for "approval"
Revisions are made if needed, and then the final version is sent to the court
So everyone be praying for this portion of our process please!! Pray that our social worker would be diligent in dedicating the time to write our home study, our interviews would go well, and that things would be in place for approval from Holt and the court on the first submission :)
On a final note, we are so excited for a number of Holt families whom I interact with regularly through an online community board. A number of them found out this past week that they made it through court in Ethiopia and are going to be traveling Feb. 5th to bring home their long-awaited children. Please keep the Rhodes Family in your prayers, as they are in Ethiopia right now bringing home their sweet little girl!!