The Road To Ren

Our adoption journey to our son Ren William.

Musings by Elaine and other Blitherings. This blog was origonally intended to document our China adoption journey to our son Ren. Now we are home and this blog is about our family. I would love to have you sign my guest book.

Scroll to bottom to see slideshow pictures.

Friday, March 28, 2008

The paperchase (do not read if sleepy or driving)

Many people ask if it is hard to adopt so just for fun I thought I would list numerically all the hoops we have to jump through to complete an adoption from China. This is only the actual legwork and paperwork we do. I think the hardest part is the waiting and emotional turmoil you go through in the process, but that is a whole 'nother post. So just for kicks here is what we have been doing and gathering for the last couple of months (some are the state of Maryland requirements!).


  1. fill out application to adoption agency
  2. fill out application for Homestudy agency
  3. ordered and paid for 2 birth certificates for Mark and Elaine
  4. ordered and paid for 2 marriage certificates
  5. gathered divorce certificates
  6. had physicals to include blood work of ALL kinds (yippee).On a side note my lovely Dr. who I shall withhold her name to protect her identity will now be known as Dr. Frankenstein (because she likes to scare the crap out of people) took it upon herself to "make sure I did not have cancer because if I did she was not going to let me adopt". Good grief. sigh. Well the good news is I now know that I do NOT have cancer. :-P
  7. Try to get Dr. Frankenstein ,a military Doctor, to have her signature notarized on the physical (wondering if a God complex at work here, not sure)
  8. physical for Eden
  9. notarized physical for Mark
  10. clean house ;-), install cabinet locks, lower water heater temperature
  11. arrange and have a Home Sanitation Inspection by county inspectors
  12. install fire extinguishers, post fire escape routes, buy 2 fire escape ladders
  13. arrange and have Home fire Safety inspection by fire Marshall
  14. ask 3 people to write letters of reference
  15. write letter of employment get signed and notarized
  16. fill out financial statement/notarized
  17. write plan to provide space for children
  18. drive to Baltimore to have 4 (four) sets of fingerprints taken EACH (one is for FBI check).
  19. file I600A at the United States Citizenship Immigration Dept in Baltimore
  20. get child abuse clearances from state
  21. get child support clearances
  22. get driving record from Georgia for us both
  23. provide IRS 1040
  24. provide copies of all life and medical insurance
  25. get dogs vaccinated
  26. provide proof of rabies vaccinations
  27. provide guardianship plan and letter
  28. Take 10 hours of very tedious boring online adoption classes (some informative stuff but not new stuff)
  29. provide homemaker letter/notarize
  30. Provide all bank statements
  31. have 4 separate visits with a social worker to be interviewed and basically looked at under a microscope. This is where the social worker determines if we are fit parents to adopt and if we are ready. Even though this can be an uncomfortable process this is necessary and in my opinion very important to the process.
  32. When the above is finished we take 12 documents which have all been notarized from several different counties and take them back to the correct county seats and have them county certified at the court houses.
  33. after county certifying we then get them certified by the Secretary of State
  34. then by the US certified
  35. then authenticated by the Chinese Embassy here in the US
  36. Buy new copier
  37. Make HUNDREDS of copies of everything we have put together!!! (one document alone can be 6 pages and we have to make 5 copies of it, then do that to 11 more documents, and that is just our dossier)!

If you are still reading this, this is just some of the stuff keeping us busy. I have left out all the phone calls, having documents reviewed, redoing documents done incorrectly, and the list goes on. This can explain the cost of adoption because each process costs something and is usually per person ,piece, service etc. This explains how we are NOT buying a child but paying for services and travel etc. :-P. So that is just the stuff up until time to get ready to travel, then the packing mania begins!!

3 comments:

Rachel said...

hahaha, You make me laugh...Dr.Frankenstein. Good post.

Rachel said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Elaine said...

Thanks Rachel, whoops I added your post twice. I will get the hang of this