This is an update on what we have accomplished regarding the documentation our family needs to all live/visit in the country of the other's birth. If this is not something that interests you, feel free to skip. We know, however, that many of you have asked and have been praying for these little details of our life. Thank you for that. This update is for you.
~ Kathleen's Status in Mexico:
Every year, I have to renew my immigration statues here in Mexico. I was on track to get my permanent residency in five years. On this track there are certain limitations, like time in and out of the country, plus having to ask for permission each year to stay another year. And of course pay a nice sum each time I do so.
This summer, however, I went to the immigration office and was told the laws had changed. I could apply for permanent residency immediately because I have a Mexican child. (Thank you Job!) I of course applied and my application was accepted. It was a bit of a lengthy process, but in October, I picked up my Mexican permanent residency card. It is good for my lifetime....no more going back to the immigration office every year. I can come and go as I please. With it I have every right of a Mexican citizen besides the right to vote or to carry a Mexican passport. I'm okay with that!
~Rafa's Status in the United States:
As many of you know, Rafa had his immigration appointment the first part of November. He was asked some questions then given a slip of paper with instructions on how to mail in some more documentation. We mailed the needed documentation, along with his passport, in December. On Saturday December 21st, Rafa went to Xalapa (the location of the nearest DHL office) to pick up his passport. We had no idea if there would be a visa or not. Well, it did. His passport came back with his visa stamped in it. He has till May 1st to enter the US. (Though its recommended he present himself in the States as soon as possible.) His actual green card will me mailed in 3-6 months to our US address.
~Maya's U.S. Documentation:
Because I am American, my children are born Americans, but we have to have to get a report of their birth abroad at the American Embassy in Mexico City. If her birth abroad is approved, we can then apply for her US passport at the same time. We were given an appointment for Monday, December 23rd. Her report of birth abroad was approved. Because of Rafa's visa situation, they offered to give us an emergency passport for Maya. So that day we were handed a passport for her that is good for 90 days. Once in the States we can mail it in and they will send us her normal passport at no additional charge. We can also mail it in from here in Mexico if need be.
~Job's and Maya's Mexican passports:
The only thing left are the kids's Mexican passports. Since they are under the age of five, they are only good for a year. We will make their appointments in Xalapa after the holidays are over. If approved, we will need to go pick their passports up in Xalapa a week after their appointment. This *should* be the easiest step of them all.
~The rest of it:
There are a few more thins that we already have, but are not mentioned in this post. I have my U.S. passport, Rafa has his Mexican passport, and Job has his U.S. passport.
We still don't have travel plans, but if you have done the math, our little family of four should be State-side by mid-March 2014!
Thank you all for your prayers and interest in our family. We praise the Lord for you!