Saturday, February 25, 2012

New Baby News!

So we had a pretty busy week, as I mentioned on my Homeschool Blog: Homeschooling Day by Day, Mackenzie went back to public school 2 weeks ago. It has been quiet here with just Katy and Ava Marie home with me.

The week goes by quickly now with school, and dance and lots of clients stopping by to drop off their tax information. I am still around 48 hours to get their tax returns back to them, but my calendar is filling up a lot for next week and I think there may be a bit of a bottle neck by the end of next week.

The girls have a big show next Sunday the 4th at Blue Valley High School for their dance school Miller Marley. It is called Dance the Mouse House and is a kind of a fund raiser for a big trip to Disney World. Not for my girls, they are not a part of the trip, this is their first year in one of their Show Groups, and so they will probably have to wait a bit for their turn. But the competition team and the older ShowBiz Group will be performing also so it will be a really good show.

So with all of this you would think that I had my hands pretty full, that I wouldn't be looking to take on anything else. But you would be wrong! I am always up for another baby!

So.....we got a call yesterday, it is for PPC, police protective custody for an itty bitty baby girl. Of course I said yes!! She is really cute, with wisps of light brown hair and big blue eyes. She is so tiny, I don't have a scale but I would say she is somewhere between 5 to 6 lbs. I have her in size Newborn and she is basically swimming in them. So sweet, we had to actually write up a schedule for the girls because they were fighting over her so much! (No playing tug of war I promise!)

I can not put pictures of her here, but take my word for it, she is sweetness from heaven. As usual I have no idea how long we will have her, most likely she will be gone on Monday as a Grandma or Auntie will probably come forward for her. But she is in good hands and we are all enjoying the moment...for as long as it lasts.

Isn't it funny how God knows exactly when you need something and just how much you can handle. I am so thankful that my Heavenly Father knows my heart and fills my arms with the sweetness of a new baby, even if only for a few days.

I am content.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

On being a foster mother

I am a foster mother. Well, I don't have any foster children right now, but I am licensed and ready to have some more kiddos in my home.

I originally became a foster mother, because I wanted to adopt and after going through all of the training to adopt from the State of Kansas I found out there really aren't any young children that become available through the state. They mostly have 10 years old or older or sibling groups. That was back in 2004, when I first started the training and I had my heart set on infants or toddlers.

Why? That is a great question. Because it really didn't have anything to do with only wanting babies, though that is what a lot of people think. It also didn't have anything to do with having children that wouldn't remember any other family, which is another thing a LOT of people think.

No, it had to do with time. You see I wanted time, as much time as I could get. I thought about adopting a 10 year old, but if you do the numbers (as any good accountant would do!) I realized I would only have 8 or 9 years with this child. And then they would go off to college, just like my son did. And I would be right back where I started...empty house.

So a friend of mine, also a foster mother, suggested I become a foster mother and then I would have the chance, if the case went that way, to adopt a child that I had been parenting. Of course now I know that she was just sharing what God had put on her heart to tell me. He was pointing the way to me.

Now, 7 years later, I have 4 beautiful daughters in my home. My oldest is 12 and I am so lucky that I have many more years to parent my children. So I am glad that I made the decision to foster.

In the last few years I have been only a foster mother to my foster children, I have not had the opportunity to adopt any of the last 9 children that have been in my home. That has been harder on me than I have been ready to admit.

One minute you are loving and taking care of a child. Think about what that entails, you plan what they are going to eat for the day, plan what their nap schedule will be, plan what clothes you will need for them for the next season...and then all of a sudden you have to plan for them to leave. I am not complaining, it is something my head is fully aware of, but my heart can never seem to accept.

I know most of the children who left our home are in very good and loving hands. Not all of them, but most of them. And we have lots of pictures and memories of them and my daughters and I keep their memory alive by talking about them and openly expressing when we miss them. It makes us all feel better to share how we feel.

Now if you had asked me if being a foster mother was very important to me, well I may have told you that it wasn't as important to ME as being an adoptive mother. In fact, I think I had myself convinced that I was getting tired of being a foster mother. And then...I was told by a supervisor at the agency that held my license that I was no longer needed.

Of course, there is a much longer version of the story, one in which I did things and said things that I thought were very important at the time, and she did things and said things that she probably thought were very important at the time. But what it came down to was that they (The agency) lost a very good and experienced foster parent, and I lost a part of my life that was a lot more important to me than I had realized.

Would I change what I did now...mostly no, I think I was doing the right thing, I think I may have gone about it in a different way. I still think the supervisor was wrong in what she was doing and the way she was doing it, and she still is, and mostly that she didn't like being called into the light because she is used to working with secrets, in the dark. She calls it "privacy".

She is used to making decisions without anyone questioning her. She isn't really very powerful in her job and probably feels even less powerful in her life. And I say again, what she was doing was very wrong...keeping siblings from each other should never be part of a policy. And we all know that really isn't their policy...the policy that changes whenever need be. But most are afraid to speak up, those that work for the agency and those that work with the agency. I have never been afraid, I will always speak up when I see something is wrong. I will never just be quiet...never.

So now I am with another agency, and they are smaller and they are nice. And they do call me every once in a while, I am patient. I really do miss being a foster mother, and this time when I wondered if I would ever get to do that again has helped me see that I do want to continue.

You see my fearlessness is what makes me such a good foster mother. I am not afraid to love a child, even if I don't know how long it will be. I am not afraid to take on unknown issues with these children, I will hug them, and kiss their little tears away. I will feed them, and when they throw their good nutritious vegetables on the floor and declare in a loud voice that they want only french fries and chicken nuggets, I will quietly clean up the floor and give them organically made chicken nuggets and sweet potato fries and even pedia sure when I can not get them to eat anything at all. I am not afraid to stay up all night rocking them and singing to them because they miss their last caregiver so much and they are too little to understand why they are here.

I will continue to be a foster mother, how can I not? I do what God calls me to do. My arms are empty, but I am patient.

Friday, February 17, 2012

The Single Mom Life!

I wanted to link to Kelly's blog, mostly because I LOVE to read her blog!! And I just can't get enough of those cutie patooties Harper and Hollis! But I don't really think of myself as a single mom, I think of myself as part of a large family!

When my son was little and I was newly divorced, we struggled a lot. I was in college, we lived for a time with my parents, I sometimes worked 3 jobs and my son had to go to daycare. At that time I probably would have called myself a single mom. But it wasn't by choice, I was really hoping to get married again one day.

Fast forward to now, I have a pretty comfortable life, I work out of my home, I spend most of my time with my children and doing things for them. Most of the struggle is gone.

I think the biggest difference is that when I was younger and my marriage ended, I found myself in a particular situation...not of my choosing.

Now, I have a life that I have built...and most of it is by my own choice. I say most of it, because my first choice is to be led by God...and He is in control of my life! When I decide to adopt another child it is because I have prayed over it and am certain that is what God has chosen for me.

Thanks for visiting my blog! Hope to see you here again!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012


Adoption is a pretty popular word in our family. My daughters and I discuss it quite frequently.

As in, "I was adopted, right?"

And the ever popular, "Why aren't all kids adopted?"

And lately, "When are we going to adopt another baby/sister/brother?"

In fact, it is not uncommon for us to be out in public, see a cute baby and then the girls start asking me, out loud...very out loud, can we adopt that baby? Of course this is usually followed by the parents of that baby getting up and moving away from us...very quickly!

No, we can not adopt every baby we see, but sometimes I wonder why does adoption have to be so hard and sooooo expensive?! It seems to me the largest cost of adoption is the agency fees. Agencies give a lot of good information to the prospective parents, they also screen both sides to make sure everyone is on the same page, but they spend a LOT of money on advertising to find birth moms and adoptive families. But if you know a woman who wants to find a family for her child and you have a good attorney, do you still need the agency? Most would say, "No."

I have been a foster/adoptive mother for 7 years. Fostering to adopt is really a great way to add to your family, while also being useful to the greater good. It is especially great when you are younger and have lots of time, so if you have a child for a year or two and then they are eventually adopted by a relative or go to live with grandma, you don't feel like you have run out of time to repeat the process. (Yes, sometimes it takes years to find out you will NOT get to parent that child forever.)

I have also been involved with International adoption. It too can take years before you actually have a child in your home. It can also go very well and make everyone very happy, but it is pretty expensive at about $35 - $50 thousand dollars for one child! And what does that child lose? Well, since it is so expensive, often the family can only afford to adopt one child, so that child loses out on the opportunity to have siblings.

I started looking at domestic adoption, I originally stayed away from that because I thought it was going to be tremendously expensive AND I also believed that no birth mother would ever choose me. I'm not down on myself, I am just being realistic. Since I thought most women who place their babies for adoption were single and only wanting their children to be raised in a traditional two parent family, preferably with no other children.

But I have recently found out that I may be very wrong. There are women out there that would welcome a single mother. They are less interested in how many are in the family and more interested in what kind of people make up the family. In other words, are you an active family, do you go on vacations, do you have pets, is your family diverse, I think you get my drift. The trend is to look more at the character of the family, not just do you have a Mom and Dad and a White Picket Fence.

Now I am not saying all birth mothers are looking for single women like me to parent their child, but I am saying that it is not unheard of. So where am I going with this? I am starting to think that there are a LOT of families out there that would just love the chance to adopt and add to their family except for the cost! I am saying that there are a tremendous amount of families, both big and small, with one parent or two, who may not fit the traditional look of the nuclear family from the fifties...but they would make terrific families for many children out there. If only adoption was NOT so expensive!

I am saying I do not think adoption has to be so expensive!! What if there was a a website...that birth mothers and adoptive mothers and fathers to be could find each other...without the agencies?! What if they could talk and meet when they were ready and find out if they had the same hopes and dreams for these children on their own?

What if there could also be social workers, and attorneys, and screening agencies, and anything else that these families needed on this website, to make the adoptions safe and secure and NOT cold and all about the paperwork and the $$$$!

Is there anything like that out there? Maybe there needs to be.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Ginger Envy

Did you know there is a name for people who love redheads? It's called Ginger Envy!

We found this out one day when we were at Subway getting lunch and Mackenzie noticed that everyone who worked there had red hair.

I thought maybe they were all from the same family or something, but we asked the gentleman who was making our sandwiches and he said, "No, the Manager just has Ginger Envy so he only hires redheads!"

Isn't that a hoot?!

I mean, I can see why someone would be drawn to that beautiful red hair

...that porcelain skin and those adorable freckles...

...and those dreamy blue eyes!

Yes, I've definitely got it...I've got Ginger Envy!

And it's oh so sweet!