Last week, while out of town and away from my computer of course, I got the e-mail stating that my application was incomplete. And there were no fewer than 10 missing items!! To be fair, most they just considered insufficient, unclear, or didn't quite understand. But some of the stuff they wanted was actually different than what the materials said they wanted...for instance, they originally said I need a letter of good standing from my current employer--I sent that....but what they really wanted was a letter of good standing from my current licensing organization--namely the Missouri State Board of professional registration!
They also wanted my exam scores for tests I had to pass almost 20 years ago! I can get those, but it would set me back almost $200 to get them.
Anyway, I've collected, amended, and supplemented my data. I've paid the ADDITIONAL AU$110 necessary as a fine for my original AU$210 application being incomplete and am praying I've dotted all the "i's" and crossed all the "t's" now.
On Tamara's side of things we've hit more obstacles. We couldn't book our 'round the world' ticket for the actual dates we wanted to travel at the end of the trip b/c you can't schedule more than 330 days out. But we had the impression that all we'd need to do was pick our dates, bring in the tickets and they'd change the dates without penalty....well, not so fast buster! Turns out that there are not flights available for our dates! The 'Round the World' tickets are sort of like frequent flyer tickets and there are very limited seats available. We're hoping that one simple option will make the rest of the trip pretty easy to schedule (namely, we need a direct flight from Honolulu to Sydney to open up), but if not, we're going to incur at least one $600 itinerary charge and lose one of our destinations (maybe Beijing). That's very disappointing to say the least. So we need some finger crossing that our scheduling works out.
On a brighter note, Tamara has talked with all of the teachers that the kids would have had (and will for a few weeks) and they have all be super excited about the trip and very willing to help us with our home schooling. Most want to stay in touch while we're there and maybe even have some Skype conferences with their classes so it can be a two way learning opportunity. The kids will be basically virtual students with their Nixa classes.