Preparing for Travel: 2 Weeks Out!

Last time I shared an adoption update, we were waiting for a judge and a court date. Well, we have both – and we leave in less than 2 weeks! Full adoption timeline here.

We have the Thursday judge and our court date is March 31, 2022 at 10:15am local time (so Wednesday evening in the US).

to do list

Travel Plans

Because of quarantine, we leave Friday, March 18 and land at ICN on March 19. We’ll quarantine for 7 days (though it may end up being 8 nights depending on what time we make it to the quarantine facility) and check into our longterm hotel the following weekend. We’ll meet our son sometime the week of March 28 and go to court on March 31.

We anticipate that we’ll take custody sometime the week of April 25, but won’t know a definite custody date until about 1 week prior. I booked an arbitrary return flight home that I imagine we’ll end up changing, but my guess is that we’ll be home around May 1!

To say we are excited is an understatement! This is something we have been looking forward to since we began the process over 2 years ago. It’s surreal that we are *this* close to meeting our son and bringing him home!

The days are flying by – it feels like I blinked in January and now it’s early March. The past few weeks have been filled with crossing things off of our seemingly endless to do list.

collage of 3 images of hilari, apple chargers, and grant with car seat

What’s Left To Do

Preparing for this trip is unlike anything I’ve ever done before! You’d think after 5 moves in 5 years plus 12 weeks in Europe that we’d have this packing thing down, but how do you prepare for a 6 week stay that ends with bringing another human home?! Add a pandemic into the mix and things have been complicated to say the least.

We’ve been making great progress, but we still have a lot left to do in less than 2 weeks. Here are the big tasks left:

  • Install car seat
  • Figure out all tech – adapters, converters, reserve a wifi egg, set up my VPN, unlock my phone to use as our Korean phone (we did get the Korean SIM card already so that’s one thing off of the list!)
  • Apply for K-ETA authorization
  • Schedule covid tests for 48 hours before we leave (can’t do this until 3/10)
  • Organize copies of all of our paperwork – home study, passports, social security cards, birth certificates, marriage license, vaccination records, K-ETA authorization, covid test results – x2 so we each have a set in our backpacks
  • Order and/or pickup all quarantine supplies (but first we need a list of what we still need!)
  • Purchase gifts for social workers, agency staff, foster family, etc.
  • Choose outfits for court, custody, and family photos
  • Pu together a capsule wardrobe for our trip – thinking I’ll repeat 5 days of outfits
  • Prepare our home, pause cleaners, deliveries, etc.
  • Figure out and order what we still need at home for baby
  • Book a car to take us to the airport and one to take us from our quarantine hotel to our actual hotel
  • PACK!
  • Celebrate Grant’s birthday!!

It may not seem like much, but trust me – it has been all-consuming and this is what’s left after 4 weeks of working on our big list! The pandemic has certainly added complications and additional stress to the process – we typically wouldn’t need a Korean phone number, wifi egg, have to deal with scheduling pre-flight covid tests, quarantine, etc. Just another layer and honestly, a cool part of this adventure of bringing baby home!! Sure, it would be easier without a pandemic, but easy isn’t interesting 😉

All adoption posts here.