Matching Panel says yes!

The last hurdle has been cleared…

After what has been reported to us as a ‘gruelling’ panel – with our social worker and the boys’ social worker being given a ‘grilling’ – the panel has recommended the match between us and our three boys: McGrew, Cuthbert and Dibble.

So full steam ahead!
We meet them in two weeks.
But before that, a well-earned holiday!
And some champagne tonight!

Washing machine crisis

Our washing machine has just died. Not slowly or gracefully, but in a cocophany of bangs and shakes, culminating in a shower of burnt plastic from its gut being dumped onto the nearly clean washing within.

Better now than in a month’s time, mind you… and it’s served us well for 11 years.

off to Comet I go…

What I learnt at the weekend

I have learned that:

Mothercare staff are very helpful

There are hundreds of different types of push-chairs
Stair gates come in different colours, sizes and styles
Stair gates have extension pieces so they’ll fit wide stairs

Mothercare store cards are called Mothercards
Mothercards are pink
Mothercards get you money off :o)

No matter how many different combinations are tried, it is impossible to get three car seats in the back of a Skoda Octavia…
Mothercare staff are very patient!

Having three boys means having to buy a people carrier
When compared to the cost of a people carrier, car seats aren’t actually that expensive

The Citroen C4 Grand Picasso comes in some very suspect colours, like ‘anodised gold’
The Citroen C4 Grand Picasso has a panoramic roof so you can watch the sky (not while driving, of course!)
Our new car will be a Citroen C4 Grand Picasso… in anodised gold…

The panel – they say yes!

Just back from the adoption panel – so excited!
We went in early, and were introduced to the 12 people round the table – a mix of legal advisors, medical advisors, adoptive parents, social workers from other agencies…

They made us feel really at ease, and then some of the panel members asked us questions they’d prepared in advance, having read our report.

There were questions on church and our busy-ness, about why we were thinking of up to three children, about how we and our church would value diversity, and about our resilience as a couple.

We left for them to deliberate, and within a couple of minutes, the chair person had come out to tell us that they’d said yes.

So we’ll be approved to adopt up to three children – which is just as well, considering!

Next stop is the matching panel on 30th July… and before that, loads to do, loads to buy, and lots of effort needed to stop Mrs D spending all our money in Mothercare and ELC!

School places available

Just a wee update – we heard yesterday from the head teacher of the school we’d like the two eldest to go to, that although she didn’t strictly have spaces, she’d phoned the local authority and explained the situation – they’ve told her to give us places! How fantastic is that! God is so good!

We’re still unsure which years the boys will go into. The eldest should be starting year 1 in September, but he may benefit from going into reception, given all the change he’s going to be facing – and he has a late summer birthday making him one of the youngest in his class at the moment (the cut-off for school years is the end of August). The middle one will then either go into reception (full-time) or nursery (part-time), depending on what we decide (with their social worker) for the eldest. We don’t want them both in the same year.

But the head teacher has said she doesn’t need to know what we’re going to do until the end of August – which again is fantastic, and gives us a bit of time to consider properly.

Jobs this weekend include completing the matching report for the boys’ social worker (questions like ‘why do you think these children are a good match for you’ – this will form the basis of the information available to the matching panel when they meet to decide on the match at the end of this month. We also need to think of questions we want to ask the boys’ foster carers, as we hope to be able to speak to them next week.

There’s so much going on – lots of phone calls, emails, forms to complete, lists of things to do, lists of things to buy… but through it all, we have peace. A peace that it’s right. A peace that God is completely in the driving seat.

Our new family

We had a great meeting with the social workers yesterday.
We had loads of questions.
They didn’t!

We saw photos taken on Friday, as well as a video of the boys feeding the ducks at a local pond!

We’re as sure as we can be that they’re the ones for us! Wow!
Words can’t really describe how we’re feeling – but ‘excited, overwhelmed, apprehensive, anxious, can’t wait’ go some way…

We’ve been to see the headteacher at the school we think is the right one for the two older boys – but there may not be spaces – we’re praying hard that spaces would appear!

We’ve lots to do over the next few weeks – not least the purchase of 3 beds, 3 wardrobes, 3 car seats, a high chair, stair guards… you can imagine!

If everything goes well, we’ll be approved by the matching panel on 30 July, go on holiday for a week or so at the beginning of August, start introductions with the boys mid-August, and have them at home with us in time for the older two to start school at the beginning of September. That’s only about 8 weeks away!

8 weeks till we’re mummy and daddy.