Friday, 29 February 2008

more stuff

Hey! So I got my documents (passports, birth certs, etc) back from the NZ Embassy on Monday. That took just over three weeks, which is pretty good. Not so good is the fact that I also received notice from them that they needed additional documentation to process my application. Mother frakker! I sent so much stuff already, and they want more?!?!

Turns out I missed 2 teeny tiny instructions on the health form. Despite the fact that the form has 2 pages dedicated to the doctor indicating whether each of the lab test results and the x-ray results was normal or not, I was actually also supposed to also include print-outs of the actual results, signed by the doctor. That required me going back to the doctor's office, which I did today.

The other thing I missed was enough documentation to prove that my husband and I have been cohabitating for at least 12 months. Funny thing is, though, that to prove that, they ask for joint bank statements, separate individually addressed mailings, etc. from the past 6 months. How does that make any sense? I don't know.

Well, I had only sent in one recent joint bank account statement, and our marriage certificate (from 10 years ago!), and our daughters' birth certificates, which both showed that we were living together 4 years ago and 2 years ago. I had thought that would be enough. Guess I was wrong. So today I went through our files, got 12 months worth of joint bank account statements (they said they only needed 6, but I sent 12 just in case), a recent excise tax bill addressed to both of us, a health insurance notice sent just to spouse 6 months ago, a credit card statement sent just to me 6 months ago, and a joint car insurance statement sent to both of us 6 months ago. That better be enough, man. I UPSed it all off again today.

Now it's back to waiting.

Friday, 15 February 2008

g'day mate

Too bad we're not bringing Giles with us. He'd fit in perfectly Down Under.

Though I guess the heart bandanna would set him apart a bit.

And yes, that is an authentic, Australian Driza-Bone he's wearing. We got it for him in the Blue Mountains when we were last visiting Aidan's brother in Sydney.

Sunday, 10 February 2008

Andy's got it

According to the UPS web site tracking, my application arrived at the New Zealand Embassy in Washington, DC safe and sound on Wednesday. Seemingly fitting, it was February 6, Waitangi Day, a New Zealand national holiday, commemorating the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi.

The UPS site says the package was signed for by Andy. Just Andy. Hee. That makes me think of Murray, in the New Zealand Consulate in New York City on Flight of the Conchords. If you haven't seen Flight of the Conchords yet, you must. It's a show by, and about these two New Zealand guys who are trying to make it in New York as a band. We don't have HBO, so we haven't been able to see it until recently when we got it out on DVD. So far we've watched the first 4 episodes of season 1, and it just keeps getting funnier. A lot of the humour seems like it would only be understood by Kiwis, or those who know some, but I guess enough of the humour crosses over, because it's a big hit, and everyone I know here who's seen it loves it.

Monday, 4 February 2008

it's out of my hands now

It's done! I've sent the whole application package off to the New Zealand Embassy in Washington, D.C.

Here's what I sent:
- Completed application form
- 2 Passport photos of me
- 2 Passport photos of my partner
- Certified copy of my birth certificate
- My US Passport
- Letter explaining why I couldn't obtain an FBI police certificate (with all the paperwork from my failed attempts)
- Completed Medical & X-Ray Certificate form (with 3 passport photos of me attached)
- Completed Sponsorship Form
- Certified copy of my partner's birth certificate
- My partner's New Zealand Passport
- My partner's FBI police certificate
- Certified copy of our marriage certificate
- Certified copies of our daughters' birth certificates
- Our daughters' New Zealand Citizenship Certificates
- Joint bank account statement
- Bank check made out to the New Zealand Embassy for US$925
- Prepaid self-addressed UPS envelope for return of documents

Now the waiting begins.

Sunday, 3 February 2008

maybe tomorrow?

Okay. So Friday Aidan went and got the 2 passport photos the partner of the New Zealand residency applicant needs. He went and signed his Sponsorship From with the Notary at our bank. I thought we were all set. Saturday morning I started piecing it all together, with the hope of mailing it off that day. But then the one item I was sure I had a copy of, was missing. I can't find a certified copy of our marriage certificate. I found 2 regular copies, but neither are certified, so they won't do. I found the certified copy of my birth certificate (2 actually), I found the certified copy of Aidan's birth certificate, I've got both our passports, I've got the medical form filled out, the sponsorship form filled out, and the actual residency application form filled out. All I need is this marriage certificate. Oh, and a money order for the fee. On the application there's a spot for your credit card number, so I assumed that I could use my credit card. But according to the Immigration New Zealand fee finder the only options for paying the fee when filing in the US are bank checks, money orders or cash. Like I'm going to send $925 in cash. Yes, $925. I should just move to New Zealand first, then apply, because the fee when applying in New Zealand is only $700 in New Zealand dollars. That's like a US$500 difference to apply from here. Oh well. I'm way too close to finishing this application of change the plan now.

So tomorrow it's off to City Hall to get a copy of my marriage certificate, off to the post office to get a money order, then off to the UPS Store to mail it all, along with a prepaid return mailer for getting my documents shipped back to me. That's important, because we'll definitely be needing our passports soon. We're planning a reconnaissance trip down to New Zealand for July!