Senor and Linda Lou have been in Pueblo Alamos, Sonora, Mexico for 10 years.
Every day brings a new discovery.
They are still working on the casa............Senor says, it won't be long.........but Linda Lou says, it won't be long until what..............stay tuned to find out what's next.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Yesterday's Trip to Olympia

Yesterday's sunrise was truly one to remember.
The sky was a brilliant yellow and pink and the valley was filled with pink fog.

Even the little green bunny out in the yard looked happy.....can't believe he is still there. During the moving sale folks snatched up the rest of the bunnies hidden through out the yard....

It was a great day! We still can't believe what we accomplished, but today is a different story and we can't believe how far in reverse we have gone.

Naturally I'm going to start with yesterday and maybe just the repeat of it will put me back in a good mood.

Just to give you some background:
There are 3 types of Mexican visas: FMT, FM3 and FM2.
The FMT is the typical traveler's visa. It is the one you get on the airplane when you fly into Mexico. Or when you cross the border in your car for a trip to Mexico. It can be valid for 180 days, but is generally meant for 90 days (after which it can be renewed for another 90).
Regardless, you must return it to customs upon returning to the United States. The requirement for receiving the FMT is your passport. Simple as that.
If you want to stay in Mexico for a longer period of time, an FM3 is a one year permit and grants a no-immigrante (non-immigrant staus just like the FMT), but after one year, it can be renewed again for up to five years, after which you can apply for an upgrade to an FM2 or just request a new FM3.
The upgrade to an FM2 will make you an immigrant. Each year you will need to reapply, but after the 5th year you will become a permanent resident of Mexico.
Under none of these FM's will you ever lose your US citizenship.
So, yesterday, we went to Olympia in search of what the Mexican Consulate requires to get an FM3.
The following are the requirements of the Seattle Consulate: (each consulate is different!)
1.A letter of good conduct from the state patrol (which is a criminal background check).
2.A notarized letter from your bank stating proof of income. The head of household must prove an income of at least $1,000.00 and that the money will be deposited into a Mexican bank.
3. Your US passport.
4. 2 front view 2x2 passport photos
5.Fill out the application.
6.Pay the fee
We were able to apply for the criminal background check, online, from home. We already knew our bank wasn't going to give us a letter. So we took the past 6 months of our bank statements and personal documents with us.
The State Patrol was a breeze, they said come back in an hour and they would have letters for us.
The lady at the Secretary of State thought that our bank statements should be sufficient, but that we should have an affidavit and then, get them apostilled. So Bill and I walked 2 blocks down the street to a library where he wrote an affidavit, basically stating that we know these documents to be truthful. We returned that to the Secretary of State who apostilled (a form of authentication issued to documents to be sent to foreign countries) and notarized the bank statements.
We returned to the State Patrol, got our letters, high fived and, after 5 hours, including travel time, plus lunch, we hit the road again.
Find out tomorrow how and where we hit the roadblock..............

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