But before I get into Friday morning, I should start with Sunday. Why Sunday, you ask? Well this past week was Spring Break for my kids, so we decided that we were going to go camping Sunday - Wednesday. So, Sunday after church we loaded up and headed for the great outdoors! For the adventure that is camping with a 7, 5 and 2 year old!
And, in case you are interested we went to Brackenridge Recreation Complex in Edna, Texas and I would highly recommend this place! It was clean, had plenty to do and our kids had a blast! But anyway, it was suppose to rain most of the day on Monday, so instead of staying in a tent all day, we decided that we would travel about 30 minutes to the surprisingly cultured city of Victoria (no seriously, there is a zoo and a Children's Museum in this relatively small town). On the way to Victoria, my phone rang with a number I didn't know, and most of the time I just let it go to voice mail if I don't know the number, but this time I decided to answer it and it was Lane Coco, our social worker. After a couple minutes of introductions and small talk, she explained to me what all needed to happen and then asked when I would like to schedule the home visit. I quickly responded with, "Well, we will all be home this Thursday and Friday. Why don't we do it then?" Then as soon as I got off the phone, I looked at Chad and said, "So the social worker is coming to evaluate our home this Friday. What does the rest of your week look like?"
*Side note: I tend to schedule things before thinking through, but eh, Carpe Diem, right?
We actually decided to come home late Tuesday night, and then hit the ground running starting Wednesday with getting things ready. And boy did we! In one day we:
- Cleaned out an entire room and made it into the office
- Hung pictures
- Bought and installed plug covers and cabinet fasteners (No, we never did that with our biological children! But guess what, no one from Memorial Herman Hospital ever inspected my house either!)
- Installed a fire extinguisher
- Obsessively cleaned out closets, rooms and drawers
- Hung all the pictures that have been sitting in the places they need to be hung up for the last year or so
- And, did all the post camping chores (laundry, put away camping stuff, etc.)
By the time Friday morning rolled around, I was so wound up from franticly getting everything ready, I was just ready to be done with the Home Study! At 10:30 AM Lane showed up at our house, and y'all she could not have been a nicer lady! She was so kind during all the interviews, and did not so much ask us questions like and interviewer but more like a friend. In fact, after she left Chad said, "She is more concerned with getting a kid a family, then keeping a kid from getting a family." And he was right. For some reason, the whole time we were preparing for this, I was going into it as if we were having to prove ourselves. Persuade the social worker as to why we deserved a child. It never occurred to me, that out of anyone in the situation she would most want to see kids have families. After all, she is the one that actually sees and works with orphans on a daily basis and experiences firsthand the importance of kids having a family that loves and believes in them. She did not put on a white glove and run her finger over our mantle, she instead asked us about our childhood, careers, and what led us to wanting to adopt. She asked our kids about things in their rooms and what they thought about having a little sister from China. And in classic Jones kid fashion, the one kid she was not interviewing (our 2 year old) is the kid that talked to her the most! The whole thing lasted about an hour and then just like that it was done.
Chad and I still have our individual interviews to do, which will be done over the next 2 weeks, and then our complete Home Study will be sent to our agency. I can't tell you how grateful I am that Lane is our social worker (especially sense we will work with her up until 5 years after our adoption is finalized), and seems very invested in supporting us thorough this whole process.
Thank you so much for your prayers, it could not have gone any better, and we are so thankful for a great support system from our friends and family!