Friday, April 17, 2009

April Update

-March and April have been full of excitement at the Gladney Center!! 8 families received referrals and 2 are already in country. (Pictures and family news are below ICBF chart)

-ICBF published the new referral chart 4/8/2009. An english translation is below. My math may be a little off in terms of total number of months the family waited though. :) Children 8 and older as well as siblings group of 3 or more have an immediate referral.

-Many older children and siblings groups are already available for adoption. To view some of the children availble please visit There are also several siblings groups of four who are looking for a forever family. They range in age from 2-8. If you would like more information, please call Beth Cheek at 817-922-6082 or Raul Velez at 813-265-8444.

ICBF Referrals by age group April-2009

Age of Child Date of Dossier Approval/total wait
Child 0-12 months Nov-2005 42 months
Child 13 - 23 months Nov-2005 42 months

Child 2 years May-2005 47 months
Child 3 years May-2005 47 months
Child 2 - 3 years Mar-2006 37 months
Child 3 - 4 years May-2005 47 months
Child 4 years Jul-2005 45 months
Child 5 years Jan-2006 39 months
Child 4 -5 years Jan-2006 39 months
Child 5 - 6 years May-2007 23 months
Child 6 years Nov-2008 6 months
Child 7 years Nov-2008 6 months
2 Siblings 0 - 4 years Mar-2007 25 months
2 Siblings 0 - 5 years Jul-2006 33 months
2 Siblings 0 - 6 years Aug-2007 19 months
2 Siblings 0 - 7 years May-2008 11 months

*Dates that have advanced since last chart February-2009

Recent Placements

Raelen will celebrate her 7-month birthday tomorrow! She arrived in the US in February.
We asked Raelen's mother, Lyndsey, what is the best advice you received during the adoption process?

"It wasn't really advice, but when I saw photos of other families who had gone through the process and had their child, I became really excited about our baby!"

What helped you during the wait?

"Knowing that we weren't alone in the wait, and having supportive family. We also had 2 other children to focus a lot of attention on, so that helped. Sometimes I still can't believe she's here! I would just tell families that I am glad we waited and it is totally worth it!!!"

We have another family currently in country who is adopting a 6-year old girl named Angie. Mom, Dad, and big sister, Bria (age 7), met Angie yesterday for the first time. The following summary is what Mom wrote about their first day together.

"Hallelujah this day has arrived. Bria was so excited this morning. She said this was going to be the best day of her life. Here is how the day went.

In she came, smiling and happy. She was so cute. She was wearing a pretty little blue dress with white lace socks and white buckle shoes. Like she was dressed for church. She was carrying her favorite doll in a little clear plastic tote bag and another little red tote bag, smaller than some of my purses, with all her belongings. Not much.Everyone left except for the translator, who video taped us for the first few minutes. Then he left also giving us about 10 minutes alone before we left to come back to the hotel. I asked her in my broken Spanish if she was happy to have a new family. She smiled and nodded. She was very quiet. Not talking much. But happy.


We got in the van to come back to the hotel. She was not looking like she was feeling well. The attorney asked her if she was going to be sick. They thought maybe she was car sick. We had her sit by the window and had a trash bag ready just in case. She had some crackers in her tote bag. Phil suggested that she eat something to help her stomach. She ate them. We thought it helped. We pulled up to the hotel. When we looked at Angie, tears were rolling down her face. She was quietly crying as she looked out the window. Apparently, it hit her hard at that point that she was leaving everything she had known behind. She did not want to get out of the van. Whenever anyone reached for her she pushed them away and started crying harder. The driver tried to talk to her in Spanish. Some of the women in the hotel staff tried to talk her into coming inside. Phil and I both tried to tell her it was OK and that we understood but it didn't help. This went on for a good 20 minutes. Finally, Phil picked her up kicking and screaming out of the van. We got her inside. She just stood by the door. I was at a complete loss at what to do. I just sat with her. Some of the staff again tried to talk to her and got her something to drink. She had stopped crying but was still hesitant. Another little girl her age talked to her in Spanish. It didn't seem to phase her. Then, a few minutes later, it was just her and I at the front door and she started to walk into the lobby towards the back of the hotel. I followed her. She walked straight to the back where there is a small playground with a swingset. She got on the swing and started laughing and smiling. Bria went out and got on the swing next to her and they were having fun. Phil got behind Angie and began to push her on the swing. Then, later I got in front of her and was playing with her as she swung over my head which she got the biggest kick out of. Her whole upset episode lasted about 30 minutes. The rest of the day was GREAT. She was happy and laughing the whole rest of the day.

The attachment process followed shortly thereafter when she called me Mami for the first time after about the first hour or so. Then, she came up to me and hugged me. She had a great day that started on the playground. We played foosball with several golf balls which she loved. Then we ate lunch. She eats very well. I hope she rubs off on Bria. We played outside with Dora stickers and colored letter stickers. That really broke the ice. She began to talk more.Then, we came upstairs to the room for the first time. Bria showed her how to play some video games like pac man and frogger. They did that for a while. Then, we went downstairs to the lobby to watch Barbie's Mermaidia in Spanish. They do not have a DVD in the room. Then we came back to the room where we played with Go Fish cards. "The whatever version" because she did not understand how to play and wasn't interested in the rules. She just wanted to hold the cards and take turns picking a card from the other person whether it was her turn or not. This didn't go over to well with Bria but she accepted it... Finally, about 8:30 Angie passed out first and Bria was right behind her. Saturday we are scheduled with our driver to go shopping at the mall."