Monday, April 28, 2008

Time....A Luxury We No Longer Have On Our Side.

Nerve rattling news struck us on Friday afternoon. The Government of Vietnam announced that it will allow the completion of adoptions for those prospective adoptive parents who have been matched with a child and received their referral PRIOR to September 1, 2008. This is the date that the current MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) expires. They will also accept dossiers until July 1, 2008 (ours is already in Vietnam). So, as it stands, we currently have 4 months and a few days to receive a referral, or it is from our understanding that adoptions from Vietnam will be halted until a new agreement is reached and the issues are ironed out.
Needless to say, this is a very scary time for us, and other PAPs in process. We feel that we are in a good position (12th) to receive a referral by 9/1 , but nothing is a given and "the line" per say is not one that advances at a set speed like a line for a roller coaster when 40 people board, the coaster runs for 3 minutes each time and then 40 more hop on. We try to keep busy and try not the think about it, but it is virtually impossible since we know at this point, there is a child in Vietnam that has already been born. A child that we hope to be matched with. A boy or a girl. A life that we so desperately want to be a part of. Thank you all for your continued prayers, well wishes and support. It means the world to us.


You can read the full release HERE
*PLEASE NOTE: Our agency, Holt, has catagorically denied that they have been involved in any of the alleged cases of fraud. Their work in Vietnam and other countries is one that all agencies should mirror as it sets the bar for ethical and legitimate adoptions.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Movin' On Up!

In the past week, three families that we know of have received a referral which is GREAT news for us. Holt has informed us that we are number 12 on the waiting list as on today! So, we have made great progress in this arena. We started as 48 on December 5th, 36 in February and now 12 on April 24th! So, with that in mind we hope and pray that we receive ours by July or August. It may be sooner or later, it just depends on the children available and eligible for adoption through the homes that Holt works with and manages in Vietnam. So, from Baseball Heaven (AKA St. Louis) that is latest on BabyBelz!

~Hank

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Tricia's Party

Last Saturday we hosted 30 family and friends to dinner at our favorite restaurant, Pho Grand in St. Louis, which happens to be Vietnamese.
Food, as always was great. We shared laughs, stories and well wishes for many more years of Tricia and her wonderful personality. We are very blessed to have such great friends.
To mark the momentous occasion I had our good friends at customink.com (they did our babybelz shirts) print up some t-shirts that scream my wife. Thanks to Tammy and Michael (Pho Grand owners) for making this a great party! Everyone had a great time. Many happy returns TBelz!




Thursday, April 3, 2008

Another Small Victory. DOSSIER TO MOJ!

Trish received an e-mail from Holt Eugene telling us that our dossier is now with the Ministry of Justice in Vietnam! This will stay there until we receive our referral. After the referral, we will complete a special power of attorney and forward it to Holt for the same process as the dossier has gone through, VN Consulate in San Fran for authentication, then to Holt in Vietnam for translation and join the dossier at the MOJ where we will begin the formal approval process. Happy news on another cold and rainy day here in St. Louis!

~Hank

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Happy 30th Birthday-- no it's not an April fools joke.

Today I celebrate my 30th birthday! Wow! Thirty years old. How did it get here so fast? It feels like yesterday I was blowing out candles on a home made birthday cake. The past weekend I have thought about what have I done and experienced in my 30 years of existence. I gained a brother, who is my hero and my heart. I've gained a lot of cousins as well as aunt and uncles. I won medals and trophies lost some too. I dance, kicked, jumped, twirled, tumbled, punted, pass and cheered through the 30 years. I won a blue ribbon for my peanut butter cookies at the fair. I played a hippo in a play and was broken hearted because I did not get the part of the flamingo (guessing because I was all of 3'4). I remember the mean boys in 6th grade and the awkward stage . I cried when a boy told me my Dad was Santa Clause. I also cried when my Mom put pig tails in my hair. I rebelled agaist my Grandmother by having all my curls chopped off.... she told me I looked like a boy and that made me happy. I absorbed all of the holidays; cooking, cleaning, laughing, Grandad passing out presents, no bake cookies, beer wienies, hamburger cheese dip, drawing names, no lumpy mashed potatoes, Grandma yelling (not in a mad manner she just had a loud voice), pretty china, yams, ham, turkey, and big poofy dresses. I was there when my Grandpa Jones passed, I was one of the only Grandchildren to see my Grandad before he died. I have experienced life and death. I would swim in the public pool-- only $1.00 to get in . I discoed at the young age of 8 I was going to be in sales, why because I won a TV from selling the most Blue Birds candy. I spent vacations in major league ball towns, I have met a lot of ball players, lots of autographs just to see the smile on my baby brothers face. I've been to home opener of the brand new Busch Stadium. I saw the Cards win the World Series that same year. I sat in the dugout at the age of 10 not knowing I would soon be living in St. Louis. I moved to the big city of Sand Springs, made so life lasting friends as well as lost some too. I found a boyfriend, broke up with him, found another one, broke up with him- I'm pretty sure this happened a lot during my 6th grade year. I made the Jr. High cheer team went to Nationals made the High School cheer team , went to Nationals. Feel in love, had my heart crushed. Went to college met some more friends, partied a little to much, racked up some major credit card bills. I sold everything from shoes to underwear to cell phones. I met the love of my life, got married, move to St. Louis, beat cancer and consider myself a successful career woman. I've gained 2 nieces, 4 nephews, 2 sisters, 2 brother n laws, a mimi, 2 sets of mother and father n laws. My mother and father after 30 years are still my best friends. I still share my brothers heart, I know when he's hurting. I have the best husband anyone could want. I've have laughed and cried throughout my 30 years and I'm looking forward to seeing what the next 30 years will bring me! Cheers!