Travel 04/05/2005

Keith reporting:
Itís another glorious day for the Holt family in Guangzhou, China. Kasenís appointment with the US consulate was today (actually, she nor we didnít have to go there, but rather our guide took all the documents that frustrated daddy to no end to the consulate where they reviewed everything for accuracy and completeness). We passed with flying colors! This means that the US government now recognizes and approves our intentions to bring Kasen home. Tomorrow we all three go with the rest of the families in our group to the consulate for a swearing in ceremony (Kasenís got to learn how to swear-in rather quickly; sounds like an all-nighter of studying!). After this brief ceremony, theyíll issue Kasen a visa to travel to the US under her Chinese passport. (Sheíll become a US citizen the minute we land in Chicago on Thursday.) At this point, we will have survived and conquered this unbelievable bureaucratic process! (One which we plan to conquer a second time in about another year).

The rest of the day has been a marathon shopping experience unlike any I have ever experienced. Itís like we caught a fever that we couldnít shake. We may end up leaving some of the things we brought over here with us just to have room to bring all the neat, new stuff home.

As you can see from the pictures, Kasen continues to thrive and is a gift beyond imagination! I wish on one hand we had done this earlier in life, but at the same time itís amazing the rejuvenation and exhilaration it has infused into this ďnearly middle-agedĒ first time dad. I recommend it highly to anyone out there who hasnít tried it yet.

We head for home in less than 36 hours! Once again, thanks for your continued thoughts and prayers. See you all soon!