ENGAGED! (No, Star Trek fans, I’m not pretending I’m Captain Jean-Luc Picard)

Saturday night Yoli and I cooked pizza and then we got engaged.

We’ve been planning this for a while, and I must admit to you now that I left all the details related to our engagement out of my entries for the past two weeks so it would be a surprise.

It didn’t happen exactly as we originally envisioned, but it still went well. She said yes and she’s wearing the ring, and that’s the main thing. 🙂

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Winding down (and still very rainy)

Well, now we’re down to the wire. Two and a half days left before I return to the U.S.

This weekend was pretty nice. I got to spend a lot of time with Yoli’s family, and the two of us got some important things taken care of.

On Saturday we went to have our pictures taken. It’s a requirement with this fianceé visa application. The funny thing (to me) is that here in Bolivia all photos for official documents are very strict.
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Twice the rice

Monday was a tough day at the Seminary. They’ve been facing an incredibly tight budget and now they have a personnel problem as well.

It was frustrating for me, because I wanted to purchase web hosting and get the site online before the day was over. But Rusty, the rector of the seminary, was busy most of the day and couldn’t come until late in the afternoon.

On the lighter side, Louise took a photo of Yoli and I with her digital camera, so enjoy!

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No NOA yet, but hope springs eternal

While we still haven’t gotten our second “Notice of Action” from the Nebraska BCIS service center, I know from checking several other websites that they are processing case numbers close to ours. I hope and expect to hear something within 2 weeks.

Once our case moves out of the black hole of Nebraska, it will move to the NVC (Nevada Visa Center, I think). There they will run our names through the FBI and CIA databases and make sure there are no red flags. This process should take a couple weeks. After that, we get approved and a packet of stuff will be sent to the American embassy in Bolivia.

Yoli will have an interview there, and if all goes well, she’ll get the visa in hand, and our wedding will proceed!

The interminable wait

I’m learning lots about patience these days, far more than I ever wanted to know.

You see, to bring Yoli here to the U.S. so we can marry is not a simple task. It involves forms and interviews and evidence and other stuff.

Our first order of business is to get her a “Fiancee Visa” which will allow her to come here and marry me. We applied for this visa at the end of March. The tough part is that our application was sent to the slowest of all the visa processing centers in the U.S.
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In the waiting

If everything works out, in 3 months Josh and I will be getting married. This days we’ve been working in “A Handbook For Engaged Couples” by Robert & Alice Fryling. It is a good book. It has given us lot to talk about and helping us to get to know each other better.

I have also had weird dreams from too much thinking of him, chatting and talking. It shouldn’t surprise me because my dreams are always weird.

Now we are waiting patiently for my visa. Hopefully, we will get it in time for our wedding. August will be my last month at work, so I can focus in September on preparing for our wedding.

Finally — An update!

Last time I posted a message here was in February after my return to the U.S. from my 5-week trip to Bolivia.

Yoli and I, of course, are continuing to prepare for marriage. There are so many things to do. One recent hurdle we cleared was getting our fianc{e}e visa petition into the mail. We had almost all the materials ready, but I didn’t have money for the $110 fee.
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Past the “expiration date”

Today is day 180 (6 months) since our K-1 Fiancee Visa request was received by the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (formerly the INS).

Unfortunately for us, because I live in Missouri, I had to submit my visa to the Nebraska BCIS service center, which is the slowest of all the service centers. Though they send out notices that say it will take “150-180” days to process the visa application, the truth is that they are much further behind.

I’m planning to call the office of my senator, Jim Talent, to ask for help. But I know ultimately I just have to wait a little longer. Hopefully I’ll have a result on our visa by the end of September.