Tuesday, March 28, 2006

The McMurphy Family Christmas 2005 Posted by Picasa

Saturday, March 25, 2006

An Organization in Oklahoma Helping Orphanages

Packages of Hope Incorporated provides a wide range of necessities to orphanages around the world. Visit www.packagesofhope.org to find out what they are doing, where, and how you can help. They even look for groups to help pack up boxes to be shipped. Their offices are on Garnett between 51st and 61st.

Some More From Lost Daughters of China

Here's a little more from the book:
- The only time a birthdate is really certain is if a mother delivers in a hospital, giving a false name usually, and then disappears, leaving the baby behind, or when birth parents leave a note with the child containing basic information. Otherwise the birthdate is an estimate, picked at random or for convenience. It's not unusual for a pediatrician here to disagree with the assigned birthdate.
- Ethnic minorities within China - there are numerous strains, particularly in the borderlands, but they add up to less than 10 percent of the population as a whole and were in some cases diminishing - were routinely aloud 2 children.
- Forced sterilizations, mandatory insertions of metal IUDs - which could be monitored by X ray to make sure they remained in place - became commonplace assaults on the women of China, as did forced abortions, even at full term. (Broken Earth, The Rural Chinese by Steven W. Mosher, 1983) (Human Rights in China documents "Caught Between Tradition and the State," 1995) (Slaughter of the Innocence: Coercive Birth Control in China by John Aird 1990)
- Officials of the Women's Federation of the Communist Party kept track of women's monthly cycles, and listed those to be sterilized and those required to have IUDs inserted. (A Mother's Ordeal by Steven W. Mosher, 1993)

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Something to read to help pass the time . . .

I have been reading this excellent book called The Lost Daughters of China by Karin Evans published in 2000. It is about her adoption of a Chinese baby girl and the plight of Chinese women and their babies. There is tons of information in it. I just finished it, but am rereading it to share with everyone some different facts. There's so much more to this than just babies being abandoned.
- It is predicted that by 2003 there will be 30,000 Chinese children living in this country, most of them girls. (US Immigration)
- Chinese women's reproductive lives are largely controlled by the state. Permission from the government was required in order to have a child; women who became pregnant without consent were often forced to have abortions, even late in their pregnancies. If that baby was a girl, her husband and his family could disown her for giving birth to a child of the wrong gender. She could lose her job and her home.
- For rural women, who constitute 70% of China's populace, life is desperately hard, even in boom times and model villages. The suicide rate among women in the countryside is the highest in the world. China is, in fact, the only nation where the suicide rates for women top those for men. Most victims are young. The means of self-destruction, most often, is a lethal gulp of the poison closest at hand, agricultural pesticide. (NY Times January 24, 1999)
- A Chinese parent who wants to give a child a chance at being adopted must conveniently disappear, and so must the rest of the family, if anybody else is around. It's the Chinese equivalent to what's known in this country as "making an adoption plan." Thus, a birth parent who disappears is often intentionally creating a chance for her child to find a new home.
- Abandoning a child is against the law in China, another reason why parents are usually careful to leave no traces. A specific provision of the 1992 Law on Protection of Women's Rights and Interests forbids "forsaking" baby girls (often, on Chinese adoption papers the child is listed as "found forsaken"), although no one has reported any substantial pattern of prosecution. (Human Rights in China, December 1998)

Friday, March 03, 2006

An Update . . .

We have been given the green light from our case worker to go ahead and start the process of Application II. She said that we can turn it in as soon as the end of March. I don't think we'll be getting it in that soon because it is very involved and wants to know lots of things about us: how much our house is worth, full physical check-ups for Lyndal and I, health status on the kids, background checks, reference letters, notarizing things, etc. We have had to go slow at first because there has to be at least a years' difference between our last biological child and our adopted child. So, she hasn't even been born yet!
I went to this website called www.redthreadmaps.com it shows some provinces and where most of the orphanages are. There are between 30 and 50 orphanages in each province. I'm not sure how many provinces there are in China, but China is very large! That is a ton of orphanages! China has started using foster care for some of the children.
Here is a general guideline of the steps we have to go through: fill out and turn in Application II, go through a home study, file paperwork with USCIS (immigration), gather and turn in our Dossier (this is the last of the form gathering we have to do I think) to our agency, our agency waits for any other families on the same timeline as us then mails all the dossiers at once - called DTC (dossier to China), we get a Log In Date (LID) of when our dossier is logged in with the Chinese government, wait for the Center for Chinese Adoption Affairs (CCAA) to review our dossier and match us with a baby girl (they actually try to have your baby look like your family), the CCAA sends us a picture of the baby they have matched us with called a referral, we take the information on the referral to our pediatrician and have him review it with us, we approve or disapprove of the referral, tell our agency we accept the referral, they tell CCAA that we accept, then we wait for travel clearance. WHEW!! The CCAA is currently estimating that it will take about 10 months from LID to referral. That time frame changes frequently throughout the year, it could be longer or shorter of a wait. I'm not sure what affects this timeline.
We told the kids of this plan tonight at dinner. Nicci was very excited and already has plans for her to sleep with her when she gets bigger because she has a big bed. Conner was a little apprehensive. He said, "Mom, you know how I like to fit in and not stand out? Well, this is, well, you know." We told him that he has a year to pray about it and get used to the idea and we'll learn how to deal with standing out together. He also said, "Chinese people eat dog Mom!" I told him that we were going to take Sammy with us to China. He thought that was pretty funny. Ethan said, "BAH!"