Tanis was given a contact by our lawyer in Lusaka--as a family that successfully adopted a child into the US recently. I emailed them and in a very quick exchange of emails I was given a phone number to call them directly. A unique situation for sure but I was able to pull out of their story things that could help us. They attributed the success they did have to working with KBF and Associates Law Firm in Lusaka (our attorney as well). One thing she did say is that she felt they were charging us too much as there really is no additional fees for siblings to be adopted, especially twins.
With that I stayed up late last night and called KBF. Our attorney was out of the office so I spoke to the lead attorney. He was very courteous and quickly said he wants to assist us in whatever way he can and his fees "are flexible" :) He told me to call him back Tuesday morning and he will have an answer for me on how much he can reduce the fees b/c he wants to go to the court and see if they will let him do one set of paperwork seeing as the boys are twins. That was good news!! So I'm asking you to pray that they will reduce their fees and we will hear this on Tuesday.
I decided to go ahead and file the I-600A with USCIS here in the States. It seems that while we are qualified to skip that step...it is causing confusion because the Consular in Lusaka has no experience with it therefore she is asking for us to do it the 'normal' way :) Easy enough. The packet is signed, sealed and sitting on my counter and when the children wake from their naps I will head out and mail it.
We were told we will be given the opportunity to rename the children at our court date in Lusaka. Yes this is something we have chosen to do. For a number of reasons actually. A name is something very special that we have given to each of our biological children. Great thought has gone into name each one. This is the one thing we can give our adopted children as well, have not raised them from birth but in this new beginning in their lives we can name them. A name that has great meaning in their situation of being adopted from Africa. A name that flows with our childrens' names. And the decision has been made that they will be all of the above, plus names of their own language. That has added a fun challenge to the mix of finding a name for our boys! We have been working with Tanis on this basically using the same methods we have in choosing a name for our bio kids. Meaning. Significance to us. Unique. Containing a Z. I think its actually easier doing this in another language at this point :) As we get closer we will announce the names but for now--they remain our secret.