Earlier this month we were fortunate to attend a gathering of a number of families who have adopted from South Korea through our agency, the Children’s Bridge. And lucky for us – the gathering was only 10 minutes away! The gathering was at the home of Bob and Marilyn Brickman, a wonderful couple who have been nothing but amazing to both Matt and I since they first learned that we were adopting for Korea. This was our third time at their picnic, the first was in 2008
and the second in 2009
. Last year we couldn’t go because of our vacation schedule, but this year we worked around vacations so that we could attend.
It was an absolutely perfect day – lots of sun, not too hot, and great friends to hang out with. Most of our “Seoul Sibling” families were able to attend so we got to catch up in person – amazing how much can change in just a few weeks. The highlight of the day was definitely discovering the new pond area that the Brickmans’ had put in a couple of years ago. The boys were hunting for frogs and they loved going for boat rides. It was really a beautiful and peaceful area – we may have to go back for a visit!
I really enjoyed seeing all the families and the kids who have obviously grown from year to year and the families who have grown since we last saw them – there were quite a few new babies… sigh.
So here’s what everyone really wants… the pictures!
Lucas going in for a 'slam dunk'
A tad blurry, but Alex and Xander having fun on the swing set
Not sure who is more into the frog catching... the kids or Jeremy
Matt getting a ride from Alex and Adam
Belinda and Ben resting on the dock
Who would have thought the play doh station would be such a hit?
Well... I tried.
Got a smile out of Isabel!
Today we received our bi-weekly update from our agency (well Matt did – for some reason I didn’t get one) … and sadly there were no updates about the South Korea program… however… I know of an update! One of the lovely people I have met through this blog received her referral… TODAY! They received a referral for a little boy, and their dossier went to Korea in mid July … just one month before ours! Congratulations Barbara and Andy! I look forward to meeting you at the upcoming Adopt Talk (we have the same agenacy).
I am trying not to get my hopes up… but knowing that so many referrals are happening so quickly makes me very excited at the prospect of getting a referral soon. If the trend continues, it could be as early as in a couple of weeks, but we know it averages at 6-8 months… if that is the case we obviously still have a while to wait.
This weekend I’m hoping to finish some Christmas projects and get a real start on the nursery… just in case!
Today we received a new Children’s Bridge update. In the last 2 weeks there have been three referrals received – a 5 month-old baby girl, and two 5 month-old baby boys – waits were 3 to 4 months. But this past week there have been referrals for five boys (5-7 months old) and the wait for referral was 2 to 4 months! Congratulations everyone!!
In the last 2 weeks there have been 5 referrals to families through Children’s Bridge! While that is quite amazing itself, what is really amazing is that the referrals took 3 – 5 months to receive!! 3 Months! The average that we have been told are 6-8 months. How very exciting for all of those families.
The picnic for families who have adopted from South Korea through Children’s Bridge was great! Matt and I were a little unsure if we should really go since we have not adopted yet – but I’m so glad we did. Everyone there was extremely friendly and welcoming. They answered so many questions and were very open about their experiences. And my goodness – the children! What adorable little ones!! There was a very nice family with a little girl they just brought home 3 weeks ago – just a little doll!!
We learned lots about travelling to Korea, what to expect etc. We also learned about other events that are held in the area thoughout the year. There is a Christmas party in Toronto each year and a culture camp just north of Toronto. There also is going to be the Jeng Yi Korean Drummers performing at Stratford Summer Music on August 3rd that we found out about – we will be there for sure! We also learned about some grocery stores that sell Korean food in Kitchener that we plan to explore.
We thought we would stay about 30-45 minutes, but we were there over 3 hours. I’m so glad we now have a couple of families we know in the area who have gone through the same experiences, and hopefully we will be able to socialize with a bit once we get our baby!!
I know – too many exclamation marks… but hey – I’m excited!