Monthly Archives: January 2010

Speaking Fus-ha with a Moroccan

Visited the Moroccan embassy today.  I was surprised that there was absolutely no wait and I was able to sit with the consular to ask him my questions about translation services and certificatons and how to obtain a Qatari visa for the baby in Morocco.

He was very friendly but spoke almost no English. So, I had to break out my fus-ha.  Remember, Moroccan Arabic is a mixture of crazy ameeya (slang Arabic) and French and Fus-ha is the formal language of the Qur’an.

After lots of hand gestures and what sounded like Quranic ayas coming from my mouth, the consular managed to understand and answer all of my questions.

Alhamdulillah, this was an easy day.

Step 5: I600-A is on its way!

We just sent off our I600-A to Athens!

IA it will reach there on Feb. 3.  We anticipate hearing back from them in 30-60 days.

Hope it’s sooner.

Step 5: check

No Advanced Parole or 4-month stay *phew*

Had a great conversation with a US immigration attorney.  Come to find out, he’s the same lawyer Rebecca at Coordinators 2 recommended this past summer, and he’s the business partner of a family friend.  Small world!

So, when we enter the US, we’ll receive a green card for the child and have our first post-placement visit with Rebecca.  Once that’s done, we can come and go between the US and Qatar as we please.  We won’t need to apply for advanced parole!  On our next visit to the US, we’ll finish up the post-placement visits and finalize the adoption/citizenship/passport process. Alhamdulillah, things are looking good 🙂

Step 3 & 4a: HS is A-OK!

We just got word from ISS-USA that they have approved our home study and that they will send it and a letter of certification to Athens!

Step 3 + 4a: check.

What the heck is a Demand Draft?!

After a visit to my bank to get an International Money Order to pay for our I600-A filing, I found out that they’re actually referred to as Demand Drafts.  Big difference there, huh?! Tomaato, tomato.

I went in to QNB in City Center and asked someone to help me with an Int’l Money Order.  After being passed to 3 different people, a guy put a slip of paper on the desk and said Fill out this form…you need a Demand Draft in US funds.  I said really? Is that what it’s called? He said yes.  Being the skeptic that I am, I decided to take a walk and think this through.  If we send a check that the US Embassy in Athens can’t cash, we’ll have to send another form of payment costing us another $50 in FedEx bills.  I wandered in to Home Center (furniture store) and ofcourse called dh to ask how to proceed.  As I was on the phone, I got the brilliant idea to call Athens and ask them directly if they can accept a demand draft check.  So, I made myself comfortable at a table and chair set in the bedroom section and made the call.

They advised me to send the check and hopefully it will work.  If not, perhaps they can accept a wire transfer.  Not sure why that’s not an option anyway being that we live in a tech savvy world.

Fingers and toes crossed.  IA, the demand draft will work and the form will get approved soon!.

6 month wait?

I spoke with the director of the orphanage in Morocco.  She told me that once they receive our paperwork and determine that we’re worthy of being parents, a child will be referred to us.  Here’s the kicker…the child must stay in the orphanage for 6 months in order to process their paperwork.

I’m not sure if I can handle being apart from the baby for that long, knowing that he’s ours and we can’t bring him home.  When we visited, that wasn’t the impression we got.  AND she might be telling me a longer time-frame as a kind of test, to see if we’ll do what it takes to ‘weed’ out those who really want to be parents.

Afterwards, I spoke with our contact in California who just traveled to Meknes.  They have facilitated several adoptions successfully through the orphanage there.  They house about 400 children as opposed to about 50 in the other orphanage.

We need to figure out where we’ll apply.  Istikhara and salatul haja are in our plans tonight.

Baby’s “Advanced Parole”

Sounds scary, doesn’t it?!

When we enter the US on the IR-4 visa, the baby will be given a green card. So that we don’t have to stay in the US for 4 months while the post-placement visits are going on (3 visits-1st and 3rd separated by 90 days), we’d like to travel back Qatar and spend our time bonding and becoming a family there.

To travel with the baby, we’ll need to apply for advanced parole (permission to leave the country while waiting to receive citizenship).  Things we need to figure out:
1. can we get the baby a Qatari visa for more than 1 month?
2. will the Moroccan passport stipulate that the baby can only travel to 1 country after leaving Morocco?
3. can we get the baby under dh’s sponsorship and family RP w/ just kefala custody?

We have a call w/ an attorney on Friday, hopefully he can help answer our questions.

**Update** Check out this entry