Last year I mentioned to Ben that I wanted to go to Comic Con and NerdHQ in San Diego in July this year. It starts on my birthday and lasts until the Sunday following. Until now I figured I would fly out to California and Ben would stay in South Carolina with the kids. Hmmm. He has been thinking about making it into a family vacation. We all fly out to California and whilst I am getting my nerd on, he will be out and about with the kids (zoo, SeaWorld etc.) Once Comic Con is finished we will hire a car and drive to Los Angeles and go to Disneyland and take in the sights of LA. Then drive up to San Francisco and see the Golden Gate Bridge and Fishermans Wharf etc in the city. Ben and I went to California in 2001 for our honeymoon and the kids have not been further west in the US than New Orleans,LA and St Louis, MO. It would be nice to take them to California and show them the Pacific Ocean as they have spent loads of time in the Atlantic Ocean since we moved to South Carolina. Of course, Ben being Ben he wants to do something neither of us have done before. He wants to do a canopy tour in the Redwoods. We had been talking about what to do for my 40th birthday in 3 1/2 years and he suggested this but if we do it this year then I'll need to think of something else for my birthday. (It will also be Z's 13th birthday the year I turn 40 so we need to do something to mark the occasion!)
So, I guess if I don't get tickets to Comic Con then at least we could have a good family vacation together. May be last chance for a good 2 weeks away for a while. I could be working next summer. We got confirmation this morning that Ben's employers have started the Green Card process for us. First hurdle to jump is PERM approval. Then it is onto the next steps, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker, Adjustment of Status, EAD for both of us. Add in to that mix all 4 of us need medicals and these can only be done by certain Doctors and there are fees for that. The there are Biometrics (fingerprints). Another fee. Finally we will all get a green card and the kids will be able to get SSN and I will be able to get my SSN changed to my married name. We also now have the added joy of having to pay a USCIS Immigrant Fee. I don't want to add it all up. The total amount of $$ will make my head explode. Thinking about it we probably shouldn't go to California. Need all the money we can get to pay fees to USCIS!