We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand. ~Isaiah 64:8

Sunday, May 4, 2008

THE Home Visit

Well, Friday afternoon we faced our first, slightly-nerve-inducing assessment and it was quite....anti-climactic. :) I know, I know, some of you all told me it would be "no big deal". But, trust me, if you've never done this, no matter how much you *know* it is "no big deal", you can't help having a little anxiety!

Yes, we cleaned and and we straightened. Of course, with three kids around 24-7, "clean and straight" is really relative. I tried not to go overboard. In fact, I even decided I wouldn't worry about removing the couple of toys that are currently residing on the foyer "tray moulding", which is visible from the upstairs hallway balcony.

Our Social Worker (SW) was very sweet and fun to talk with. She sat with us and shared with the kids a bit about what to expect right at first when their sister comes home. She also explained the orphanage experience a bit. She tried to engage them in conversation, however, they were awfully quiet! They did seem to perk up a bit when it came time to show her around the house. (Thank goodness!)

Her main objectives for the visit were: 1) to take down a description of the house (# of rooms, description of home, etc), 2) to share what to expect with the kids, 3) to assess the kids' comfort with the idea of adoption, and 4) to assess the baby's future sleeping arrangements.

We were done in about 20 minutes. Thank you for your prayers!

Tomorrow, Erik and I go to our first office visit (10:30). This will be a little bit more serious conversation, but I expect it to still be a friendly one. We'll talk about our marriage, our parenting, how we are preparing for a new child, and I don't know what all else. We'll be there for about an hour. We'd be very grateful if you'd pray for this meeting, too!


Sonia said...

Hi Kerry,

That was similar to ours. Our social worker came with info on all the paperwork we needed to pull together and sat and talked with us casually. She took a walk around the house and made notes as well.

BUT, there were several visits after than. One where she interviewed Kevin for an hour, one where she interviewed me for an hour, and another where she interviewed Ryan (for about 20 minutes). Then there was one more where she interviewed both of us together for about an hour.

She also had to interview our references in person.

We also had to have the fire department inspect our home. They wanted to see an escape plan on paper and wanted to make sure Ryan understood our escape plan. We failed our first inspection with the fire dept. because we did not have a way to escape from the second floor windows...we had to buy those rope ladders and have one in each bedroom!! The health department also had to come and inspect.


Kerry said...

WOW, Sonia! Your state has some pretty serious hoops. NC does not require the fire dept. and health dept. inspections. That would make me REALLY nervous.

I wouldn't worry about the fire dept - last year we spent a couple days talking and practicing our escape plan and we do have a fire escape ladder. We keep it in our youngest child's room and all agree that is our meeting spot if we can't get down the stairs. After our Junebug comes home, her room will be the new meeting place. (youngest and all)

House fires were my biggest fear when I was young (still are).

However, the health inspection! YIKES! I like to think I keep a healthy house, but boy I'd be a nervous wreck! :)

Our SW won't interview our references, but I think she does interview each of the adults individually.

?MomOf4? said...

During our home study visit for our first adoption my then 9yo son told the social worker "the house isn't usually this clean". Kids... you gotta love their honesty.

Kerry said...

Oh, I love it! Yes, we had a similar comment here, but that's OK. I expect that she would know a home with kids isn't usually as clean as when we are expecting company.

The SW did ask my "Stinkbug" if his room is "always this clean". Of course he said, "No, not usually!" :) We all laughed!

Jamie said...

So glad to hear that it went smoothly and is behind you now.

Yay for being one step closer to the next member of your family. :)