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Holly2234

How are your families doing without you?

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Just wondering how everybody keeps in touch with their families who live abroad. Ive tried to teach my family to use Skype to no avail! How do you all keep in touch?


CR-1
07-01-2011 : Married

05-10-2012 : I-130 Mailed to London (DCF)
05-11-2012 : I-130 Delivered and signed for at Embassy
05-18-2012 : NOA1 Email
07-26-2012 : NOA2 (69 days)
07-28-2012 : NOA2 hard copy received
08-10-2012 : LND Case number received. Letter dated 08-07-2012
08-15-2012 : DS-230 and DS-2001 mailed to Embassy
08-23-2012 : Medical
09-14-2012 : Emailed Embassy and confirmed DS forms have finally been logged (After 29 days)
09-22-2012 : Interview letter received. Dated September 19th.
10-03-2012 : Interview - Approved!
NOA1 to Interview - 138 days.
10-10-2012 : Passport with Visa delivered two hours late at 8pm.
10-22-2012 : POE Philadelphia
11-15-2012 : Green Card received in mail
12-11-2012 : Went to the Social Security office to apply for SSN after it did not arrive.
12-15-2012 : SSN Arrived in 4 days.

05-09-2013 : Left USC Husband.
11-28-2013: Filed for divorce.

05-01-2014: Divorced

05-08-2014: Sent I-751 petition to VSC

05-13-2014: NOA1 (was not postmarked until 5/22/14 and received on 5/24/14)
06-18-2014: Biometrics in St. Albans, VT

11-21-2014: RFE. Received on 11/24/14.

01-22-2015: Interview notice mailed out. Received 1/26/15

02-12-2015: Interview in St Albans, VT - Approved during interview!

CRBA
08-16-2012 : CRBA in London for our daughter - Approved!
09-11-2012 : CRBA and Passport arrived.
09-25-2012 : SSN Arrived. Mailed from MD on 09-17-2012

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Filed: Timeline

Skype and phone. I know phone bills can rack up, so if you don't have it already, get a VOIP phone (Voice over IP). It's a regular land line phone hooked up to the internet so you call the UK unlimited for a monthly fee. I talk to my wife in Hawaii from Norway probably 10 - 15 hours a week - for $30 a month, and your family only needs to have a regular mobile or land line phone number.

Vonage is one of many providers in the US.

Also, we email daily, and we both have smart phones with 3rd party text message apps so texting is free.

Edited by jaejayC

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We use Skype a lot. I speak to my 74 year old father more than I ever did when we lived a few miles apart. I think it's because he knows it is free! :whistle:

We also use Vonage for telephone calls and Facebook is great for keeping tabs on friends. And I try to send letters and cards.


01/27/2011 - Trevor's N400 submitted
02/18/2011 - Married
04/02/2011 - NOA1 hard copy received - priority date 03/30/2011
07/08/2011 - Trevor is now a USC - called USCIS to request upgrade of the petition.
08/02/2011 - NOA2
09/08/2011 - LND case number received, medical booked
09/26/2011 - Case complete at NVC
09/30/2011 - Interview date assigned
11/08/2011 - Interview - approved!!
11/10/2011 - Visa in hand
12/04/2011 - POE in Atlanta
12/12/2011 - SSN number received in mail
12/12/2011 - Welcome notice received
01/06/2012 - Green card received
09/06/2013 - File for Removal of Conditions
10/01/2013 - Biometrics for ROC
02/03/2014 - Card production email received

02/17/2014 - 2nd card production email received

02/28/2014 - 10 year Green card received

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Filed: Timeline

Skype + logmein

this way they dont have to learn anything.


2006 - Entered US on F-1
2009 - COS to H-1
2011 - Married USC

Conditional GC Process:
04/2012 - Concurrent I-130 petition / I-485 AOS / I-765 EAD / I-131 AP sent
35 days to biometrics, 73 days to EAD/AP combo card, 85 days to interview, 96 days to Conditional Green Card

04/2014 - Eligible for ROC

06/2014 - I-751 package filing joint with spouse sent

5 days to extension,37 days to biometrics, 172 days to CSC transfer, 247 days to Green Card

04/2015 - Eligible for Citizenship

09/2015 - N-400 package filing on basis of USC spouse sent

29 days to biometrics, 105 days to interview, 147 days to oath and US citizenship

~ 9 years and 6 months from first entry to US citizenship

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Just wondering how everybody keeps in touch with their families who live abroad. Ive tried to teach my family to use Skype to no avail! How do you all keep in touch?

He got UK version of Vonage with a UK phone number. Less than 10 pounds a month. It's drawn out of the UK bank account he kept. He brought the Vonage box and plugged it into my router. UK friends, family, and most importantly his children can ring a UK phone number and it rings in Texas. If your family can call next door then they can call you. There is no charge to them other than whatever they pay to make a local call. No international dialing codes for them or you. Just something like 01234 456 789.


England.gifENGLAND ---

K-1 Timeline 4 months, 19 days 03-10-08 VSC to 7-29-08 Interview London

10-05-08 Married

AOS Timeline 5 months, 14 days 10-9-08 to 3-23-09 No interview

Removing Conditions Timeline 5 months, 20 days12-27-10 to 06-10-11 No interview

Citizenship Timeline 3 months, 26 days 12-31-11 Dallas to 4-26-12 Interview Houston

05-16-12 Oath ceremony

The journey from Fiancé to US citizenship:

4 years, 2 months, 6 days

243 pages of forms/documents submitted

No RFEs

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We have along distance plan on our land line that allows us to call Canada as often as we want for $20 a month. My mom often calls me, but just to say hey, let's talk! Then we hang up and I call her right back.

We sometimes use Skype. My parents are kind of new to that so it isn't too often.


formerly sherrybaby

ROC Process

12-13-2013 * 90 day window to apply opens

02-24-2014 * ROC package sent to USCIS Vermont Service Center

02-25-2014 * ROC package received at USCIS Vermont Service Center

02-26-2014 * NOA1 notice date

02-28-2014 * Cheque cashed

03-05-2014 * Biometrics notice date

03-28-2014 * Biometrics Appointment in Baltimore

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Anyone know how to call UK cell phones cheaply from the US? Preferably nothing that charges a heft connection fee?

We have Ooma's VOIP servive, and calling a UK landline is great. But calling a UK cell phone requires a second mortgage.

Most of my relatives are elderly, so still have landlines - but my friends in Britain generally just have cell phones these days (and are rarely in their houses anyway) so being able to (affordably) call their cell phones would be fantastic.


11-24-2006 Annette and I meet in Rome

09-09-2008 Engaged!

01-30-2009 Fiance petition filed

03-22-2009 Fiance petition approved. Case moves to U.S. embassy in London

04-01-2009 Package received from U.S. embassy in London

06-01-2009 Visa Medical (London)

06-23-2009 K1 Visa Interview (London)

06-27-2009 Passport returned by embassy. K1 Visa received!!

07-04-2009 Fly to Denver (port of entry - Houston, TX)

07-25-2009 We are married (the joint happiest day of my life)

08-07-2009 Social Security number obtained

08-20-2009 AOS, Advanced Parole and Employment Authorization forms filed

09-24-2009 Biometrics appointment (Aurora, CO)

10-05-2009 Advanced Parole received

10-09-2009 Employment Authorization received

10-13-2009 Colorado Learner's permit obtained and driving test scheduled

10-21-2009 Driving test taken and passed

11-30-2009 Green Card Interview (Centennial, CO)

12-08-2009 Green Card received

01-04-2010 Employed

01-28-2011 Our daughter is born (the other happiest day of my life)!

11-21-2011 Filed for Removal of Conditions

12-28-2011 Biometrics appointment (Aurora, CO)

03-16-2012 Card production ordered

03-23-2012 Card received

09-04-2012 Application for Naturalization filed

10-05-2012 Biometrics appointment (Aurora, CO)

12-11-2012 Naturalization Interview (Centennial, CO)

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Thanks everyone :) Loads of great ideas. I will definitely give them a try.


CR-1
07-01-2011 : Married

05-10-2012 : I-130 Mailed to London (DCF)
05-11-2012 : I-130 Delivered and signed for at Embassy
05-18-2012 : NOA1 Email
07-26-2012 : NOA2 (69 days)
07-28-2012 : NOA2 hard copy received
08-10-2012 : LND Case number received. Letter dated 08-07-2012
08-15-2012 : DS-230 and DS-2001 mailed to Embassy
08-23-2012 : Medical
09-14-2012 : Emailed Embassy and confirmed DS forms have finally been logged (After 29 days)
09-22-2012 : Interview letter received. Dated September 19th.
10-03-2012 : Interview - Approved!
NOA1 to Interview - 138 days.
10-10-2012 : Passport with Visa delivered two hours late at 8pm.
10-22-2012 : POE Philadelphia
11-15-2012 : Green Card received in mail
12-11-2012 : Went to the Social Security office to apply for SSN after it did not arrive.
12-15-2012 : SSN Arrived in 4 days.

05-09-2013 : Left USC Husband.
11-28-2013: Filed for divorce.

05-01-2014: Divorced

05-08-2014: Sent I-751 petition to VSC

05-13-2014: NOA1 (was not postmarked until 5/22/14 and received on 5/24/14)
06-18-2014: Biometrics in St. Albans, VT

11-21-2014: RFE. Received on 11/24/14.

01-22-2015: Interview notice mailed out. Received 1/26/15

02-12-2015: Interview in St Albans, VT - Approved during interview!

CRBA
08-16-2012 : CRBA in London for our daughter - Approved!
09-11-2012 : CRBA and Passport arrived.
09-25-2012 : SSN Arrived. Mailed from MD on 09-17-2012

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Facetime on ipads/iphone. free and unlimited


USCIS (201 days)

07/12/2011-I-130 sent

07/15/2011-NOA1 received

02/01/2012-NOA2 receieved

NVC (20days)

03/19/2012-case received at NVC

04/03/2012-Got case #,IIN from operator

04/03/2012-Emailed DS-3032

04/04/2012-Pay AOS fee ($88)

04/05/2012-AOS fee showing its PAID

04/09/2012-Sent AOS package

04/16/2012-Received IV fee bill

04/17/2012-Paid IV bill ($230)

04/18/2012-IV fee showing its PAID;sent IV package

04/23/2012-Case complete

05/03/2012-Interview date set

06/06/2012-Interview date

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Canada
Timeline

We use magic jack and facebook. My mom has long distance also so she calls when ever she wants too.


Spoiler

Met Playing Everquest in 2005
Engaged 9-15-2006
K-1 & 4 K-2'S
Filed 05-09-07
Interview 03-12-08
Visa received 04-21-08
Entry 05-06-08
Married 06-21-08
AOS X5
Filed 07-08-08
Cards Received01-22-09
Roc X5
Filed 10-17-10
Cards Received02-22-11
Citizenship
Filed 10-17-11
Interview 01-12-12
Oath 06-29-12

Citizenship for older 2 boys

Filed 03/08/2014

NOA/fee waiver 03/19/2014

Biometrics 04/15/14

Interview 05/29/14

In line for Oath 06/20/14

Oath 09/19/2014 We are all done! All USC no more USCIS

 

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Wales
Timeline

To the UK persons in this thread, there's actually a simple solution known as Sipgate.

Sipgate creates a virtual telephone line that looks and acts just like a physical line in your home, except it's entirely internet based. Sound familiar? Yup, Vonage worked on the same principal! Still does.

If you go to sipgate.co.uk you can register for an account, and get yourself a UK, geographic number for free. Gratis, zero. Nada. .... Incoming calls to that number are completely free for you to receive, and don't cost the person who is calling any more or less than a regular call, because as far as they and their phone provider is concerned, it is a normal call. You actually do this already whenever you ring a call center. 90% of call centers, and around 50 - 60 % of businesses operate on the same principal, and in the case of at least 4 places I've contracted in, they DO run on this principal. It's why places like LloydsTSB don't have to have a huge telephone exchange for the 1000 staff. They just have an internet line and it goes over this.

If you want to make calls in the UK then you have to add credit to the account, it's actually pretty cheap. Quite often about the same price as a BT line used to be.

Disclaimer, I don't work for Sipgate, nor dor I sell it's services and I have no link to it. I just work in IT, and I'm quite enthusiastic about it because it's so bloomin simple

Right, so , how DO you make and receive calls?

Well, you can do this in a few ways. Sipgate offer some software on their website called Bria (made by a company called counterpath) so you can run this on a laptop, and it'll act just like skype, except for physical lines.

You could buy a 'special super amazing internet phone...' (Ugh, you don't need that unless you're a geek like I am...)

Or, you can do what I do, which is buy an Analogue Telephone Adapter (ATA), in other words, a box that on one side is plugged into your internet router, and then you can plug a normal every day phone into that so everything looks and feels like a real phone (Because it is) (Yes this is the same thing Vonage used to do, they used a box called a PAP2, they're pretty cheap)

Sipgate even have configuration instructions on their site for a large number of products and no you do not have to buy from them, and yes any SIP enabled phone will work and NO generally you won't need to do anything to your router and YES there is a lot of information on google and Yes it's easier to get the equipment in the US and No you don't need to be in the UK, sipgate don't care (Even says on their website)

By the way, the sipgate help pages don't just say 'do this'. In most cases, it'll show you a screenshot of the config page, and then it'll overlay your information so you just have to copy and paste exactly what it has in there.

Also, sipgate run a voicemail server with this too, which is free... completely free.... If someone leaves a voicemail, sipgate will (if you want) email it to you, and email it as an attachment. So if you have an iPhone or an Android phone, you can listen to it right on your phone, and you don't have to be in the house... (also they have android and iPhone apps, so you can even receive calls on your cellphone, totally over data. It does not cost extra...

I do this, my fiancee does this, I got the place I work for doing this and the place I worked before! It's awesome

and yup, I'll help if you have questions or issues where I can,

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Thanks that sounds just like what most of us need! :)


CR-1
07-01-2011 : Married

05-10-2012 : I-130 Mailed to London (DCF)
05-11-2012 : I-130 Delivered and signed for at Embassy
05-18-2012 : NOA1 Email
07-26-2012 : NOA2 (69 days)
07-28-2012 : NOA2 hard copy received
08-10-2012 : LND Case number received. Letter dated 08-07-2012
08-15-2012 : DS-230 and DS-2001 mailed to Embassy
08-23-2012 : Medical
09-14-2012 : Emailed Embassy and confirmed DS forms have finally been logged (After 29 days)
09-22-2012 : Interview letter received. Dated September 19th.
10-03-2012 : Interview - Approved!
NOA1 to Interview - 138 days.
10-10-2012 : Passport with Visa delivered two hours late at 8pm.
10-22-2012 : POE Philadelphia
11-15-2012 : Green Card received in mail
12-11-2012 : Went to the Social Security office to apply for SSN after it did not arrive.
12-15-2012 : SSN Arrived in 4 days.

05-09-2013 : Left USC Husband.
11-28-2013: Filed for divorce.

05-01-2014: Divorced

05-08-2014: Sent I-751 petition to VSC

05-13-2014: NOA1 (was not postmarked until 5/22/14 and received on 5/24/14)
06-18-2014: Biometrics in St. Albans, VT

11-21-2014: RFE. Received on 11/24/14.

01-22-2015: Interview notice mailed out. Received 1/26/15

02-12-2015: Interview in St Albans, VT - Approved during interview!

CRBA
08-16-2012 : CRBA in London for our daughter - Approved!
09-11-2012 : CRBA and Passport arrived.
09-25-2012 : SSN Arrived. Mailed from MD on 09-17-2012

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Australia
Timeline

My parents refuse to use skype, facebook, or anything else too scarily technological. They won't call us because we use cell-phones instead of a house line, and they NEVER write old-fashioned letters or send anything in the mail. My mother uses an internet chat program to talk to me occasionally. We phone them every Saturday night (okay, most saturday nights) using a phone card and talk to them for about an hour. If I haven't called for too long, mama will send me a quick email to find out if I've dropped off the face of the earth.


Karen - Melbourne, Australia/John - Florida, USA

- Proposal (20 August 2000) to marriage (19 December 2004) - 4 years, 3 months, 25 days (1,578 days)

STAGE 1 - Applying for K1 (15 September 2003) to K1 Approval (13 July 2004) - 9 months, 29 days (303 days)

STAGE 2A - Arriving in US (4 Nov 2004) to AOS Application (16 April 2005) - 5 months, 13 days (164 days)

STAGE 2B - Applying for AOS to GC Approval - 9 months, 4 days (279 days)

STAGE 3 - Lifting Conditions. Filing (19 Dec 2007) to Approval (December 11 2008)

STAGE 4 - CITIZENSHIP (filing under 5-year rule - residency start date on green card Jan 11th, 2006)

*N400 filed December 15, 2011

*Interview March 12, 2012

*Oath Ceremony March 23, 2012.

ALL DONE!!!!!!!!

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Filed: Other Country: Canada
Timeline

I haven't talked to my parents on the phone since the beginning of January. I used to talk to my mom at least once a month for an hour or more but they own a store now and are very busy with it.. I gave up calling them because every time I would call they would be busy or not home.. :(

the last time I did talk to my parents, my mom said she thought it was enough that she read my Facebook page.. :blink:

oh my mom will send me a e-card once a month or so..


mvSuprise-hug.gif

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