Sunday, December 03, 2006

First Hospital Visit

...For Little One that is. (I've been what seems a million times for others!) He has not felt real great for a week or so, a cough, etc. We bought the cute penguin vaporizer for nights, but it didn't really seem to be helping. Friday morning he awoke with lots of green gunk all over his nose. He didn't have a fever, but did have a little temp of about 99. We stayed home and tried to get him in to the primary care physician he would soon be going to but had not yet been set up as a patient. The secretary said he wouldn't be in until 2:30, but she would talk to him in the morning between meetings and call me. Time flew with Little One and I hanging out, and me trying to get some housework done since I had to take one of my precious few sick days (I now only have 4 for the rest of the school year!). Before I knew it it was 1:30. I knew I needed to get to the grocery store since I had only one and we were about at the Mother Hubbard's Cupboard stage. Of course they called at 2pm!!! Are you kidding? I didn't even call back, I was so frustrated! It was almost time to pick up the other two. Long story short I should've called and hopefully the Dr. would have seen him.

Saturday night, a friend was over and Little One just started acting lethargic, had more trouble breathing, and he was getting a fever. I took him temp and it was 101.2. Time to go to ER. My friend took Braeden and put him to bed at her place as it was 7:20 by the time we left. Olivia came with me and Little One. They took his temp once we got there and it had already gone up to 102.9, which for a 10month old is not good. They took him right back and the poor guy had to have saline shot up his nose, an IV inserted to withdraw blood and admin. antibiotics, and Xrays to rule out pneumonia. He ended up "fine" but with a bad cold. We were told to do Tylenol/Motrin rotation every three hours and given amoxicilian prescription. By the time we left his meds had kicked in and he was much better. Today you can tell he just doesn't feel good. Doesn't really want to eat much, but I'm tricking him into it - I'm so mean! :) He has also taken two long naps. Not sure yet if I will need to be off with him tomorrow as well. I'll call his sitter tonight and see what she thinks. She has 6 - 3 bio and 3 adopted and is now expecting!!! :) She knows these things. :) Here's to feeling better Bubba. :)
Saturday, November 25, 2006


You know you've done something right when the new 9 month old to the family comes home after an overnight and your two older children yell "Brother!" as they engulf him in hugs!!!

"Spongebob is Yummy!"

Ignore that title for a minute... I do not like Spongebob. We do not watch Spongebob. In my opinion, with the ages of children I have, it's not appropriate. Too many "kids" cartoons these days are not geared toward kids, they are geared toward preteens and teens. There is too much aggression, too much sarcasm, too much rudeness and disrespect, too much of the values I don't want instilled in my 5 and 2 year olds. They have enough years ahead in public school to be initiated into those things without seeing that I "agree" by lettting them also watch it on tv. When my children reach that Jr. High age, it may be revisited, but for now, no Spongebob!!!

That said, Whenever we are in a store and happen to pass by one of the bazillion Spongebob marketing ploys, Braeden is always very excited. He knows who Spongebob is. Why??? Well, that's because the kids at his day care watch Spongebob, own Spongebob paraphenalia, talk about Spongebob. His provider knows my tv rules, and abides by them generously, but you can't keep kids from talking about or playing with their things.

What do I say whenever we pass by one of these items and Braeden says "Oh, look, Spongebob!!!" Well, I say "No, Spongebob isn't very nice." One day I said, "Spongebob is yucky." Braeden's comment, "No mommy, Spongebob is yummy!" He still says that, even now, when we pass Spongebob at the store!!!
Thursday, November 23, 2006

Time For a Parade

The parade was great!!! The kids weren't cranky at all upon getting up so early. I'm pretty sure Olivia had a hard time sleeping from the excitement, she was up as soon as her alarm began; bright-eyed and bushy-tailed!!!! (Not her usual self in the early mornings.) :) We made it to the train with time to spare, got a great spot for the parade (though I scoped out an even better one for next year!), and they did a wonderful job waiting the almost two hours until the start of the parade. (I, of course, did some planning and brought their Water Wow! - a must!, some books, and some CANDY!!!) The parade did drag a bit as we had to wait every little bit while a group performed to our right for the live broadcast. We ended up next to a very nice couple from the NW suburbs. She offered to help Olivia sit on the "fence" in front of us while leaning against her, while I did the same for Braeden. Of course my cargo, although lighter, was much more difficult in that he grew quite restless at different times during the 2 hour parade. How can you blame him? It had been a long morning, and how many marching bands can one 2 year old sit through???? :) We looked at most of Macy's windows prior to the parade, but saved the last for after since it was around the corner anyway. This year's windows depicted Mary Poppins, the literature version, not the Disney movie, and they were great. Here is a pic we took this morning at that final window...

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


We have some very exciting plans for Thanksgiving!!!

Last year I took Braeden and Olivia to Chicago for the Thanksgiving Day Parade. I had always wanted to go and I figured, why not??? Of course, had someone told me it was going to be the coldest Thanksgiving in Chicago in 30 years, I may have reconsidered! I didn't want to drive and find parking so we drove 40 min to the train station and took the train. The train is great. You can wheel the stroller right on and off and it gets out only two blocks from the parade!!! Of course, not being an avid rider of the train, I also didn't know that it runs the Sunday schedule on holidays. Basically meaning that it only runs every other train, and of course the one it skips in the mornings would be the 6:50 which is what we had planned on catching. So, we waited an hour, caught the 7:50, and although we didn't get a great spot, we ended up where the parade finished and many of the horses and people came right up to the crowd here. They got their picture with Mrs. Claus!!! They thought they were pretty cool!!! It turned out perfect for our first year.

This year, I wanted to go again, but really wasn't sure about Little One going. He wouldn't understand or care, would be cold, and probably cranky. A good friend offered to take him for the night/day. So, we were ready to begin our planning. I knew this year we would have to get up earlier and catch the 5:50!!!! So, already tonight, I have everything packed and ready, the kids are sleeping in their first layer of clothes, we will get up, do the bathroom/diaper thing, put on their second layer and coats, throw them in the car, and be off. They can go back to sleep on the drive. I have packs of mini-muffins and bottled water already in the car for breakfast. The weather is supposed to be perfect - mid 50s. The kids are excited to say the least. Should be a great Thanksgiving.

After all, what am I thankful for this Thanksgiving??? My children. What better way to celebrate them than a parade!!!??? :)

From the Mouths of Babes II


Two of those moments where you are dying to laugh, but know how very wrong it would be.

The first occured on our way home from dropping off Little One at a friend's. (More on that in my next post.) Braeden was screaming in the car, reached a count of three for a time out, and I pulled the car over for his 2 minute time out. For the next two minutes I heard (with numerous intonations and variances I never knew existed):

"Mom, mom, mama, moooommmmm, mom, mommy... etc."

I really did start laughing after a bit, but only Olivia, who could see my profile, knew. She kept my secret and did a great job not laughing herself. ;0)

The second occured with Olivia herself.
Olivia is very emotional and is prone to crying extremely easily. I don't even remember what she was starting to cry about but I was beginning to tell her she would need to go to her room until she was finished.

She (with the biggest pout and whine in her voice) said, "I'm done now."

I said, "Olivia, you need to say, 'I'm done now,' without the whine."

She looked straight at me, dead serious, and said,

"I'm done now without the whine."

Oh my gosh. ;0)
Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Thank You

I was driving north yesterday to do some Christmas shopping at Toys R Us. I was kid-free as I had taken the day off work.

The night before, Little One decided to stay up partying all night. :) He had gotten sick all over his pjs, etc a little before I came up to bed. I cleaned him up and put him back to bed. He must have thought nighttime was over and was up literally almost every hour, wide awake and ready to go. No sickness, just done with sleeping. I would keep trying bottles, bed, anything, nothing worked. He would sleep for a little bit, then wide awake again. Needless to say I was a little bit tired, and feeling quite sick myself by morning. As I knew we had quite a day after my full day of teaching (3pm meeting with a DCFS investigator who is investigating Little One's former foster mother, 4pm gymnastics for Olivia, some kind of dinner, 6pm Daisy meeting for Olivia, occupying the boys for an hour, then picking Olivia up at 7 to head home), I knew there was no way I would make it sanely through the day. I called in sick.

I slept the morning away, then did some housework which a single mom of three can't always seem to fully finish (vaccuuming and putting away the clean clothes!). I still had some time before I needed to pick them up, so I decided to drive up the half hour it takes to now get to our nearest Toys R Us, since ours closed down. Olivia and Braeden's Christmas was already pretty much taken care of (I am an early shopper type - I hate how stores get as the holiday approaches - it takes a lot of the spirit out of it for me.) Little One of course still had nothing and I figured this would be one of a few times with no kids.

On the drive there I thought about something that had caught me that morning. While working on the computer and doing laundry, The View was on in the background. I wasn't really watching, but something they said made me start thinking of my past relationships. Not only romantic, which there haven't been a whole lot, but others as well. The fact that none of these "worked out" the way I may have liked at the time. The fact that my hometown did not have the pull on me to keep me there.

Due to these, I was able to step out in faith to return to school for my teaching degree. Due to failed relationships, I was able to step into the unknown to take a teaching position in a town I had never heard of. If it hadn't been for these "failures", I would not be the person I am. But most importantly, I would not know, or be parenting, the most important things in my life. My children.

So, thank you. I say thank you to those failed relationships. Those times of hurt and confusion. I thank the fact that I was not too scared of the unknown to take a leap of faith and try something new. I thank God for guiding me along the way. And I thank all those family and friends who have been my support. Who have moved with me in spirit through my different physical and emotional places in life. Thank you.
Monday, November 13, 2006

Sneak Peek

Here is a sneek peak of Little One. No face as he is still a "true" foster child. :)

Sunday, November 12, 2006

The Wizard of Oz

The Wizard of Oz has always been a favorite of mine. For a very long part of my life I had quite a large Wizard of Oz collection. Over time, especially recently, it has been paired down to only a few things. I still love the story. Olivia has watched The Wizard of Oz, but Braeden has never seen it. We had planned to go a few weeks ago to see it at a special performance at our local old time theater. They were having a special 75 cent showing to celebrate an anniversary. I wasn't sure how he would do, but talked it up to him quite a bit. We got there 20 minutes before it was to start - they were sold out. Braeden spent the next 20 min screaming and crying. We rented Babe (farm animals you know) to pacify him. So - long story now becoming shorter- we decided to watch it tonight. We only got to the part where they reach the Emerald City, but Braeden was mesmerized. I don't think he moved an inch. I got a couple of pictures because it was too cute. This is my favorite. This is when they went into the woods and first met the lion! :)

Milestones Part 2

Well, this weekend proved to be quite the weekend for developments. Not only can Little One crawl, but he can also sit by himself and stand while holding onto something. The last is still shaky so I watch very carefully and catch when I need to, but he has come so very far! He is also getting a first tooth on the bottom.

Tonight I made a collage of pictures to give to Little One's mom at their visit on Wednesday. It has pics of him sitting, standing, and crawling. I hope to show his mom that I am not like his last foster mother. I hope for her to see I am here to take the best care of him that I can for as long as I have him. I still hope for a positive relationship with bio parents of one of my kids. I know they must exist, I have just had too many negative experiences with ones I've had previously. One can always hope. I also took Little One to get his pictures taken at Picture People today. I will pick them up tomorrow. It looks like they will turn out well, he did great. I plan to give her one of these as well.

From the Mouths of Babes

I've decided I need to use this forum to capture a few of Braeden's latest quotes. He is developing quite a personality.

1. Braeden and mommy were playing a "game" where he asks what a million things are, when he already knows the word. He was asking about body parts this day.
Braeden: (pointing to forehead) "This?"
Mommy: "Forehead"
Braeden: "No - Two head!" (while holding up two fingers) :)

2. While riding in the car, mommy and Olivia were discussing the "schedule" for Monday. I was telling her that she would be going to her first girl scout meeting at 6:00.
Mommy: "After dinner we'll be dropping you off for your first girl scout meeting."
Braeden: (Not to be one-upped by his sister.) "I go to my boy scout meeting!"

3. Almost anytime recently he is very upset at me for who knows what.
Braeden: (With lots of attitude.) "I no happy to you!"

4. Just this morning, we were discussing the "menu" for breakfast.
Braeden: (to Olivia) "We are having cereal and grapes and applesauce!"
Mommy: (Because the last one had not been mentioned at all.) "Braeden, I think you're dreamin' "
Braeden: "No - I awake, I'm not dreaming!"
Friday, November 10, 2006


We have a crawling 9 month old!!! When Little One came to our house last Thursday he was not crawling or sitting by himself. He can now do both! He just started crawling today so he is taking a couple "crawls" before collapsing on the floor, but it's big progress none the less! :)
Thursday, November 09, 2006


I forgot how much I really dislike (or should I say hate) bio parent visits. Maybe I blocked it out. I now am remembering things like when Braeden was given grapefruit juice at a supervised visit when he was like 3 months old. Who do you think was the one dealing with a sick child the rest of the day? Not the bio parents! Or when the current caseworker told the daycare she was just going to let him ride up front with her because he was cranky. Are you kidding???

Anyway, Little One had his first bio visits since being with me this week. He has one on Wednesdays with mom and one on Thursdays with dad. Crazy thing is, everyone pretty much knows he is not bio dad, but I guess it still has to be proven. Put it this way, you can clearly tell Little One is NOT made of the genes from this person.

Another thing: Who the heck schedules visits for an infant from 1:30-3:00 pm!!!??? Hello!!! Have you never heard of naps? A little thing called sleep? The fact that infants not only need 11 hours of sleep per night, but ALSO two naps!!!??? That is prime napping time!!! AAAAHHHHH!!!

And then you have the, what I consider to be "games" of the bio parent visits. Such as: Foster mom put him in this cute outfit, but I bought this one and am putting it on him myself right now. Come on! At least Little One's outfit fits the current season, though, I'll give them that! Braeden was put into shorts and a tshirt in the middle of the Arctic winter!

So, daycare provider and I are trying to get him an earlier afternoon nap on visit days, yeah right, and I am creating two bins: one labeled mom and the other dad. These will hold those lovely outfits he returns from visits in and will then be put right back on him the next week for the next visit. You want to see him in that? Fine. But do you really have to change his clothes simply for the reason of dressing him in YOUR outfit? I do understand they want to provide, but can't you just ask that he be sent in that next week. I am already tired of visits. We've had two.
Sunday, November 05, 2006


I finally figured out Little One's bathtime woes. I have always put the kids in the tub while the water is running. Might seem strange, but early on with Braeden I discovered he LOVES to put his head under the water as it runs in the tub - seriously! So, I don't even think about it anymore, that's just how we do it. Last night after the water finished running in he was perfectly happy. Even kicked his legs a few times. (He is quite behind most others his age in a lot of things.) So tonight, I kept him with me as the water ran in. We were in the bathroom, but he didn't mind the noise. I placed him in after it was done - no problems at all. He even figured out how to use his hand to splash the water - it was so cute! Now we should be good to go in that area as well. :)

Schedule? - Check

We have a schedule. Saturday I made sure to try to get Little One on a schedule at all costs. I put him down for a nap at 9 - he did great. After 1 1/2 hours sleeping I woke him so he wouldn't sleep too very long. I knew he was probably tired after not getting a great night's sleep the night before. At 1, he went down for an afternoon nap - again, went down great and slept almost 2 hours when he woke himself. We did the requisite Target run that afternoon with a friend of mine who has a foster daughter. We've shopped Target together for every placement, except one. It sure adds up quick! :) Little One almost fell asleep on the way home but the kids and I kept him up. We did dinner and I got the other two ready and down for bed at 7. I then gave Little One his bath and got him a bottle. He went down at 7:30. I kept waking up myself through the night. Partly because I was so congested and had trouble sleeping, partly because I was thinking I had missed him waking up. He didn't. I was up at my usual 5:30, showered, and woke him a little after 6. That will be when he will need to get up for a bottle before we hit the road during the week, so I figured I'd start him on the full routine. Again today he took a nap around 9 and then 1, and took his bath and bottle after the others were down. He went down at 7:30 and is sound asleep. Hoping for the best again tonight with no wakings. :) Here's to a schedule!!!!! Yay!!!!!
Saturday, November 04, 2006

Spoke Too Soon

Well, I guess I spoke too soon. Last night Little One was up off and on quite a few times (went down at 8:30, up at 9:30, up at 12:30 for an hour!, up at 4:20). A couple for bottles, a couple just wide awake and ready to go. Olivia showed up in my room at 3:30 complaining of her chest hurting, I just had her get in bed with me and go to sleep. All in all, it was a long night. I really think that Little One had little to no schedule at all where he was. That is the goal of the day - a schedule!!!!
Friday, November 03, 2006

Doing Just Fine (knock on wood)

Well, 28 hours into being a single mother of three and so far so good. My body feels the exhaustion of adrenline, anticipation, stress, etc, but really it's gone so well. He is very easy going which helps a lot. Olivia loves being a big sister yet again and helps out whenever possible. Braeden is getting into the role as big brother himself. I am finding lots of ways to praise him and include him as much as possible. I am taking a sick day Monday to get the house organized, etc and am going to keep Braeden with me for the day. I spent the day with Olivia yesterday going to doctor visits and shopping, and I think Braeden may need a little one on one with mom by Monday.

We did the boy bath thing tonight and they did well. The newest member is not real crazy about the baths right now, most likely because it's a bit chilly, whereas Braeden has always been a HUGE fan of water and was doing flips in the tub (sort of), so it was fun to see the difference. :) Braeden ran and stripped down as soon as I mentioned the word. I sent Olivia to find his missing diaper, only to discover that, lo and behold, he had already thrown it away!

Last night Braeden woke three or four times calling for me and wanting a toy that had fallen, etc. I hope tonight is better. Little one, on the other hand, slept from 9pm to 7am straight. I kept picturing the worst and checking to see if he was still breathing! I had forgotten about that paranoia. I had that with Braeden the first six months or so of his life as well. Not the best feeling!

On other fronts, I had Olivia's first parent/teacher conference today. I did ask about the assignment and she really doesn't think it will even be noticed by the other kids. I hope she's right but am not so sure. I also had my first "You have got to be kidding that MY child did that" moment. I'm sure it's not the last, but I really couldn't believe it. Her "best" friend in the class "S" ' mom had her conference already and relayed an interesting story to the teacher. She was home one day and going through her bank. Her mom asked why she was getting into her bank and S proceeded to tell her that MY Olivia said that S couldn't be her friend anymore unless she paid her!!!!!!!! WHAT!? I couldn't believe my ears!? The teacher said, Oh don't get on her for it, I'm sure S just misunderstood something that was said. I was thinking, no way, I bet she really did say that. So tonight after we had had dinner and unwound a bit, I brought her over by me, reminded her how important it is to tell the truth, especially to family, and told her the story her teacher relayed. I asked if it was true that she said that - she did!!! couldn't give me a reason. Wow. How do you discipline that???? I explained that a few weeks ago when she came home telling me about bullies and what they were and how they learned about them in school? She was kind of being a bully to ask someone to pay her to be her friend. I said I was very disappointed in her and hoped she would choose differently next time. She spent 15 min in her room, which of course was the end of the world. I hope she learned something from this!!! What will I do if it happens again???????

Oh, life is never dull with three! :) ( Not that it was with two - or one for that matter! )
Thursday, November 02, 2006

A New Arrival!!!

Yay! We have a baby brother in the house! The 8 month old boy, who just turned 9 months, came to live with us today. I received a call at 2:30 asking, "Do you want a baby today?" Of course I said YES! We had parent/teacher conferences tonight until 6:30 so I just had her drop him off with me at school. I don't care. I had one conference and he is a totally easy going baby. For now anyway. :)

He is so cute! Part Caucasian, part Hispanic. Foster mother dropped him off at the agency for his visit today, along with most of his stuff and, I guess, a nasty letter. I'm hoping the cw allows me to read the letter, very curious as to what is in it.

A hectic evening with getting in late, etc, but a good start. The hardest thing is just trying to figure out his schedule: feeding, sleeping, etc. He's out now so that's good. Hoping he sleeps through the night. I'm very glad now that I had gotten a lot of Braeden's things out and ready. That has helped tremendously.
Wednesday, November 01, 2006


Well, we have our first difficult school assignment as a family of foster care / adoption. Olivia has to do a timeline of her life. She was given a strip of posterboard to attach pictures of her life from babyhood until now. For most, no big deal. Even for Braeden, that will be easy. For Olivia, it's hard. It is bringing and will bring up difficult things for her. We have no pictures of her from "before." Before she came to live with me. From birth until she was 3 1/2. Considering she's 5, that's most of her life.

I gave her a couple suggestions since her teacher didn't include a note to us or suggestions for altering the assignment. We could just place pics from 3 1/2 until now, or we could draw a pic of what she may have looked like as a baby and add other pictures to that. What else could we do??? She didn't like the drawing idea, which is fine by me. So we then role played what she could or would choose to say if kids ask about why she doesn't have baby pictures. That's a lot to have to already explain at 5 years of age. I feel for her. I fear for her. My heart breaks for her. But I know Olivia. I know how strong she is and has already had to be in her life. I know how much she loves us and the fact that she will soon be adopted. I only pray that she doesn't have to stand up to teasing at such a young age.

Suggestions??? The assignment is due next week.
Monday, October 30, 2006


I have a new title: Mom. Not foster mom, but Mom. One and only. Such a good feeling.
In addition, I wrote a poem in January 2006 when I found out that Braeden's appeal was complete and Olivia's termination was on the way. It's title: Little Did I Know. I had planned originally to use it on my adoption announcements. The two were supposed to be adopted within a month of each other and I was going to send announcements on both at once. Since this is not the case, I will be sending separate announcements and the poem didn't quite fit. I'm going to share it here. Now you will understand the title of my blog...

Little Did I Know

Little did I know that the road would be so rocky
Little did I know that the trip would take so long
Little did I know that my heart could hurt so much
Little did I know that God is never wrong

Little did I know that love could be so powerful
Little did I know that a dream, so far, could go
Little did I know that God would place the right ones
Little did I know that my heart, so large, could grow

Little did I know that a dream has it's own timing
Little did I know that this day would finally come
Little did I know that two souls would be sent to guide me
Little did I know that they would choose to call me mom

But God knew all along and He had a plan to follow
God knew all along that my dream would soon come true
God knew all along that we three should be together
God knew all along that I'd share it all with you

God bless.


It is finally here! Braeden is mine officially and forever!

The court appearance went off without a hitch, and was so quick it was hard to believe that's all there was. Luckily I had called in advance and spoken with a clerk about bringing a camera. I really wanted a photo to capture the day, but with all the new rules and regs cameras are not allowed. I had heard people were able to "smuggle" in disposables through the system, but wanted to call and find out. The clerk I spoke with said that she couldn't guarantee anything, but that she would give security my name and IF I had an adoption appearance scheduled and IF they ok'd me, then they would allow it. I first tried the "say-nothing-and-get-it-through" idea. Didn't work. They immediately asked if I had a disposable. I said yes, that my name was supposed to have been left, and that I had an adoption. They asked my name, confirmed it and ok'd the camera. They said that I had to keep it on first floor. I told them our room was on the second and they said OK but make sure not to take pics of anything else since that is juvenile. No problem. We were in and out in about 10 min. Pics and all! He is my son.

My friend, for too many years to count, was with me for this occasion. She is a very special friend and she and her husband are Braeden's godparents. I think it will be important for my kids, especially if I end up with the crew I hope to someday have :), to each have their own special godparent/parents to "call their own." That way each child will have a special person/people to rely on or take them somewhere special once in a while. Being a single mom, I think it will become even more important to them as they grow older.

As for the new one I had hoped/thought I was getting. Didn't happen. Cw told me that they had the mtg, brought out all the complaints, concerns, etc. but supervisor didn't say he should be moved as the cw thought he would. She thinks he is making a mistake and is making sure all is documented. I don't get the system. Let's remove a child from a home that is questionable, or whatever, place them in foster care at a tender age, and then knowingly keep them in a foster home that is questionable. The child is 8 months, can't sit by themselves, and has bruises when the cw visits. How would they have bruises if they can't even move???????? Ahhhh!!!! I feel for these kids we're supposed to be helping.
Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Still a chance

Braeden is doing great. He must have been working on some teeth or something. He is fine now!

Yesterday I waited on pins and needles to find out about the 8 month old and what they had decided. Nothing. I called our cw today and found out that they ended up not having the meeting. I thought for sure it was yet another failed possibility, but, there is still a chance. The meeting has been changed until next Monday and the cw is really pushing for him to be moved. Another supervisor at the agency is in agreement, which means it LOOKS like it will go through. Whether that means they would move him Monday, or transition him, I don't know. That would most likely depend on the foster parent's attitude is my guess.

We are supposed to be visiting with Olivia's brother here for the weekend. Looking forward to seeing him. I haven't told her yet, you never know.
Saturday, October 14, 2006


Here goes, this pic doesn't look great on my computer, I'm hoping it turns out great on yours.


Braeden scared me today. I had to check online to see when you should call the doctor. I should know that by now, but we really haven't had issues of that sort. He was running 103 degrees around noon, took Tylenol. At 3:30, it was 103.7, with the Tylenol still going. At 4:30, he was at 105!!!! Wow! Never had a child with that high of a fever, yes, I called the Dr. He said "I'm not lecturing you, but just so you know, high fevers happen. They come on unexpectedly and if you don't have other symptoms, just keep doing what you've been doing. You should put him in a luke warm bath and send someone for Motrin. If fever stays up the next 24 hrs. give me a call." Send someone for Motrin??? Mind you, we know our pediatrician outside the office as his family goes to our church. He HAS to know I'm a single parent. Oh well. I stuck the kids in the van, no shoes even (for them), drove the half mile to Walgreens, left them in the car (go ahead, call DCFS on me!), and got some Motrin. All I had at home was Tylenol, I thought I had Motrin, guess not. Motrin and Tylenol are great to alternate for fevers in case you didn't know. Motrin works better. Poor guy. He was just so lethargic, eyes watering, teeth chattering though he was burning up on his body. Needless to say tonight I put him down for bed a little early, not a peep. That's when I know he's sick! And tomorrow I'm supposed to be helping paint scenery for our church's production of "Your a Good Man Charlie Brown." They may be painting without me.

On other fronts, since I've been MIA on the blog front lately, nothing much going on. As far as sis, DCFS has decided to close the case. What case? They never really had a case. Unreal. My agency is calling the State's Attourney as soon as the paperwork comes in that they have officially closed it. It AT LEAST needs to be open to check up on her and make sure things are ok. AT LEAST.

We had our home visit yesterday and I was hit with another "possibility." I hate possibilities!!! Well, I guess if they actually turned out I would love them, but since they usually don't, it just gets my hopes up. Anyway, this is for an 8 month old boy. He is most likely not returning home and is currently with a foster mom. My cw tells me she wanted to move him 2 months ago, but her supervisor is stalling. She feels that he is not in a very safe/good environment. In a foster home, go figure. I guess almost every time she goes there he has a bruise or something going on. That is still pretty young to be getting a lot of bruises. He's not walking or cruising yet even. So, they are finally having a big meeting about the situation on Monday and asked me if I would be interested should they decide to finally move him. I said YES! I know, if sis ends up coming here too it could be hairy, but I have to know God's plan will prevail. He knows I wouldn't say no to either of these situations and will give me only what I can handle. So, I've gone through all my 6-12 month boy things. Lucky thing is, if he really is 8 months (cws don't always have ages right) then he was born in Feb which is when Braeden was born. So I have things in his size in the right season. And when I saw the pile of 6-12 I couldn't believe it! What was I doing, outfitting a team!? Anyway, I'm excited and hopeful, we'll see.

Plus - October 30 is almost here! Braden's adoption day! Yay! :0)
Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Who ARE some of these people???

These people who are supposed to watch out for innocent lives. To serve and protect those who cannot protect themselves. I'm tired of seeing the "bad" of this system.

We had our home visit today. Our cw said that just today the DCFS worker who was looking into Sis' situation finally came in to talk to her. After repeated unreturned phone calls. He said that since "you (the cw) are her caseworker and mom seems to be doing what she needs to, we're going to close the case." She then re-told him that no she is not mom's caseworker, that her other two children's cases are terminated which means her case was terminated, and that mom has not been seen by the agency since January, so who says that she is doing what she needs to do???? He just kind of said - Oh. She told him something needs to be done to assure that this baby is being taken care of, even if it's just to open the case intact for 6 months, which we already thought had been done. He said he'll talk to his supervisor. OH MY GOSH! So no one has even been checking on her!!!???!!! Are You Kidding!? Here it has been over four weeks since I've found out there was a baby, over three weeks since the case was hotlined, and really nothing has been done. Nothing has been done. A couple checks, which were bad at first and now "seem" ok he said. So you're just assuming she's doing things and you want to close the case!? AHHH!!!! My cw said that if they do not open the case she is calling the state's attorney herself.

Pray, please, please pray for this innocent caught in the middle of - excuse me - IDIOCY!!!! (Can you tell I'm frustrated?????) :0)
Tuesday, September 12, 2006

One Scoop Coming Up...

Here's the latest on the baby. They are currently putting them on "intact family" status. One wrong step and they will be "pulling" the baby. What I found out that that means is someone will be in the home two to three times per week checking up on them. They will look at everything from medications to drug testing, etc. One thing and I am told that "sis" will be taken into the system.

I completely understand trying to keep the family together. I really do, don't get me wrong. But a person who has already had two children taken, did absolutely not one thing to even try to have them returned, and then the state had to step in and terminate rights, exactly one week after this innocent life entered the world, and that newborn, unable to protect herself or speak up for herself is left in those same hands - that I just don't understand. She is now the guinea pig in this thing called family reuinification? How does that, how can that, make sense? I just have to believe that this is completely in God's hands. Technically, through a coincidental and most likely right-violating way, I came to know about this baby. If not, no one else would be involved. No one would even be looking in on this family to see if the child was ok. No one would have searched for fun to see if a baby had been born, because no one knew she was even pregnant. God has a plan and I have done my part to make people aware who need to be. I just pray that IF it is in His plan to remove her from the situation, that it be done sooner, not later. These are important important months in a child's development. Who will her biggest influence be???
Friday, September 08, 2006


Finally, we finally, finally, finally have an adoption date! Braeden will become "officially mine", a forever part of my family, on

October 30, 2006
I can't believe that this part of our journey together is finally almost at an end. No more requesting permission to travel out of the state. No more asking permission for an extended trip. No more asking permission to get his hair cut!!! I will now venture into the unknown life of (duh, duh, duuuuhhhhhhh) normal - regular - everyday parents!!! :0) Yippee!!!
Friday, September 01, 2006

Blah, blah, blah, nothing new...

On our front, still no news about "sis." Still having horrible relations with Olivia's brother's agency regarding visits (have not seen him since May). Still no date for Braeden's adoption. Still trying to get a couple days ahead on lesson plans for school. And, still trying to completely figure out planning for a regular education class.

My prayers continually are with sis. I think of her constantly, as if she is already mine. Setting myself up for a let down? Maybe. Linked to her already through my own wonderful daughter? Maybe. Wanting her out of what is most likely not the best situation for her? Definately. All I know is that DCFS is "still investigating."

Olivia's brother's cw called a few days ago wanting to set up a visit for September. "Call me back right away," the message said. Amazing. Like I'm the one who hasn't been working on getting these visits together. Right. We had two visits in May, and two were scheduled for June. When it was almost the first, with 5 days to go, I still didn't know a meeting time, place, nothing. Only the date. As it was summer and my vacation time, I had many people wanting to make plans, and things we wanted to do too. I could not set aside a whole day without knowing a meeting time for a visit. I called and left a message about wanting to know a time, etc. and that if I didn't know within the next two days I would assume there was no visit and would make other plans. Nothing. The day before the visit, the transporter calls. I explained the situation and that we had other plans. She then set up the time, etc for the other planned visit, an overnight later in June. The day before that one, of course, I was deathly ill. Sick like I am only once a year or so. Horribly sick. So I called to explain we wouldn't be able to have the visit and could we possibly reschedule for next weekend? She said she would have to wait and see, that the transporters already had their schedules for July. Which must mean that we weren't scheduling a visit for July because it had never been brought up. Not a word since that phone call that I made.

Anyway, back to a couple days ago when his cw had called me. On my way home for lunch, I called my house (I know, I'm weird, but it saves a couple minutes on a 30 min lunch) and there was a message from our cw. She said his cw called her too and said that they had called me last month and I had not returned their call. Are you kidding? She had told them that they must have that wrong because I always returned calls. You go! Thank you for sticking up for me!

Anyway, I called her brother's cw back after school. She said they wanted to set up a visit for Sept, and I said, well, first I want to discuss what you had told my cw. I was told you said that you called me last month and I didn't return the call. She said "Mmmmm Hmmmm... " like, yessss... I said, I never received a call from you. She said, it wasn't me it was the transporter who called. I said, they never called me either. There was no message and nothing even on caller ID for either my cell or home phone. She just said oh. I told her I was very unhappy that they were making me out to be the bad guy when I have done nothing but try to get these visits worked out. So, nothing, we just set visits for Sept and Oct, that's it. No apology, nothing. I don't say this often, but I HATE them! Isn't your job to serve and protect children, not make innocent people look bad.

Besides all of this, she then said that basically they were going to tell her brother about the new baby and wasn't sure what I was going to do with Olivia. Why on earth would you tell him about her? There are no legal connections, rights are terminated. You can't do visits, nothing. Plus, now, if the baby hasn't been taken into custody by our next visit, he may tell Olivia. We still have 3 weeks until then, so I'm just hoping we have more news by then. I just don't want to decide to tell her only because he may. I want it to be because it's the right time. I guess, like everything else, it may be out of my hands. We wait and see.

No date for Braeden's adoption, but we are closer. Two days ago I signed the petition to adopt. It's at the courthouse now, so we wait for a date. I've been told by a couple people that it could be within the next two weeks!

And work, well work is work. It's going well, no major issues or behaviors, just the usual yucky stuff and attitudes. (of staff that is!) I'm just trying to get ahead in my lesson plans, which I usually am by now, especially so that if a placement does happen I already have some organization on that front! :)

Hope you are well... God bless...
Thursday, August 24, 2006

A Sister

More to the post I began this morning. To update you on the baby: Olivia has a brand new sister, born August 8, 2006. Unfortunately I haven't been able to tell her yet. Not that I can't, but I won't. I don't think it's fair. She wouldn't be able to yet understand the forces that arise to remove her and her brother from someone unable to fully care for them, terminate parental rights on them, but now leave a brand new baby with the same person. Does that make any sense???

After my informing the agency about the information I received, I felt like they really weren't doing much to find out themselves whether this information was true. A good contact/friend I have in the agency was of course out of town from the day I found out (14th) until yesterday (23rd). It was my first day with kids in class and I called her the second they left for the day. She freaked, like I thought she would, and went online immediately while on the phone. She found the record! A baby girl, born August 8th, 5lbs 7oz! I won't give her birth name, but will call her "Sis" here. My friend said she would talk with someone and was planning on hotlining the call.

My friend then called back and left a message ( as I was in a mtg ). She found out that Olivia's cw found out about the baby Monday from a birth announcement in the paper. She hotlined the call Tuesday after digging up her new address/info. DCFS refused to take the call. My friend hotlined it again herself and this time they did take it. By law, they are to go to the residence or make contact, not sure exactly, within 24 hours. I was told to "be ready." She called me at 5pm (made the call at noon) to say she still had not heard anything. This morning I informed my principal of the situation and that if I received this call, I would take the placement and would take a couple days (at least) off. My mom has said that she would fly here to help, if needed, until she could begin day care at 6 weeks. I readied the "baby container" and got out the couple 0-3 mo outfits I knew I had. I waited anxiously for my cell to ring all day, while trying to teach! No call. :( I still have hopes that this child, this innocent will not be left with someone I know to be unsteady to say the least. I pray for her constantly. I await the day I can show Olivia her sister and explain the situation. She will be a great big sister, she already is with Braeden.

My prayers are with sis tonight.

Hi Ho, Hi Ho...

It's back to work I go. Well, today is my first full day with kids. Yesterday we had a half day, Tues was homeroom only, and since I don't have a homeroom this year I had time to work, and Mon was institute day. While I'm glad to be back in the routine, I do miss not seeing my kids during the day. Also, making it very hard :) - they updated and strengthened our security on the internet. I can no longer get on my (or anyone else's) blogs, and no ebay!!! Ahhh!!! What will I do during down time??? :)

I hear feet upstairs and will need to update more later. See you!
Monday, August 14, 2006

So Much Information

We're back... We're back!!! (OK, I admit, we've been back for two weeks!) :(

Prior to leaving I was able to get the living room and hall floors refinished, and painted the living room, looking good!!!

We had sooooo much fun in FL! It was nice to have two more sets of hands and attention to go around for a while. :) We swam almost daily, ate out constantly (since my parents don't know what the term home cooking means :) Just kidding!), went to the beach, Busch Gardens, Mickey's Magic Show on stage, and Sing Along Mary Poppins at a grand old theatre. Didn't buy too too much, but found some great deals. How can you pass up Gap boys flip flops for 97 CENTS each!!! Got two pair in upcoming sizes for Braeden. Also found a great outfit for him for our Adoption Day!

Speaking of adoptions... Braeden's subsidy paperwork has been turned in to the courts and we anxiously are awaiting a court date to finalize!!!! Unreal!!! Within a month it will be a done deal!

Tomorrow is Olivia's final termination court hearing! Also on her front I found out some unbelievable news today, but am waiting on pins and needles to find out if it is true. Through some unusual circumstances I found out today from some people that they are 99% sure that her bio mom had another baby within the past week or so!!! It fits turn of events because she completely dropped out of the picture with no phone, address, etc about 7 months ago... Hmmm... I wonder why? Obviously trying to hide the fact and hope to get by with keeping the baby??? Well, I passed the info on to her cw who now will be calling the hospitals and health dept to find out if this is true. I guess that her name should have come up at the hospital as a red flag. So - it sounds like, from what I heard from people today, that if this info is true, and if they can find her and the baby, I may be getting a placement! Wow. Needless to say tonight I find myself going through all of my baby stuff "just in case." A newborn in tow is not the time to reorganize all my clothing bins, etc.

Olivia turns five on Wednesday! How exciting! We will be going out to breakfast and opening gifts that evening, then having her party on Sat. Next Thursday she begins kindergarten and she is soooo very excited!!!

They began day care today, and are with Olivia's former cw. She lives only a couple blocks from my school which will be great!

I finally got a new computer, but for some reason it won't upload photos!!!! What is with me and computers? Anyway, I'm at least on the right track! :)

This past weekend, a friend of mine had planned a christening for her son, my godson. We were to go Thursday ( my hometown ) and stay through Sun morning. She called right before we were leaving to say they would have to reschedule due to the airline issues. Unfortunately many who were attending are from out of town and were flying in. We ended up still going to visit and had a great time. I'm exhausted!!! I don't know how long ago it was that I stayed up til 1 am! But it was great fun. We picked blackberries which was a first for the kids and a blast. She also helped me to make, on the computer, almost the exact same adoption announcements as ones I wanted to order online. I think it will be soooo much cheaper! What a blessing!

Remember back when we went to see Barney? I had talked about wanting to take them to the Wiggles? They LOVE the Wiggles! Well, I had watched their website for literally months as to when they were coming nearby. Finally, they were to come to Allstate Arena this past weekend and tickets were going on sale in June. Well, of course after months of watching for this info, they went on sale while my mom was here and we were out of town for the weekend. I conveniently remembered two weeks later!!! I couldn't believe it!!! By then I could only get tickets pretty far back. I didn't really want to go if we weren't close, because I just didn't think they would really "get it" otherwise. Anyway, long story short (too late), my dad found out about this, and last week got on the internet. He found fifth row "hot potato" seats and purchased them for us!!! We went on Sunday on our way back from my friends and had sooooo much fun!!!! Their faces when the different characters were coming out were priceless! Especially Captain Feathersword, they love him! In fact, we did a lot of pirate things in FL and they both want to be pirates for Halloween! Too cute! I'm checking on Ebay! :)

Well, I think that's a pretty good update for now! Hoping you are well. God bless.
Saturday, July 08, 2006

Subsidy is Done!

Wow, finally. And talk about having to take things into your own hands. I had heard from a couple people that Braeden's subsidy paperwork was done, but had not received a call from the cw. She was supposed to come the Monday we returned from our family reunion, June 26 to give it to me in order to contact my lawyer to go over it and sign it. Only then can it be sent in to the state. She didn't, and she didn't call. Finally Thursday morning, July 6 I called her myself and left a message, asking if it was finished and reminding her we were going to be out of town July 11 - 31. I figured that maybe I could at least get it and I guessed see my lawyer when we returned, wasting three weeks basically when it could be on it's way through the process of sending to the state. She called back right away once she was in the office, apologized, and brought it over around noon. I then called my lawyer and left a message for him. When 5:00 came and went I thought, maybe he'll call tomorrow. But no, he called that evening!!! I explained the situation and he got me in on Monday eve!!!! He will then give the cw the paperwork so that she can send it in ASAP! Yay!!! We won't have to wait the extra three weeks! SOOOOOOOO excited!

On other fronts, although we all LOVE Olivia's new hair, she told me yesterday she'd like to grow it back out. I think she misses having her hair done! :) It'll be a long process, it doesn't grow that fast, but it'll happen. I'm hoping that the cw will begin her subsidy paperwork while we are gone so that once her Aug 15 court date comes and we wait the 30 days for appeals, which won't happen, her paperwork will be ready to go. We'll see...
Wednesday, June 28, 2006


It blows my mind how different websites can look depending on your computer. My parents gave me their old computer recently, which is an iMac. We have Windows at work so my blog I created and worked on there was how I liked it. Now I look at something so different. The layout is very different on the iMac than what it was at work. Plus, for some reason I get the comments left to me by email like before, but for some reason I can't publish them. So, I have been getting comments, and please continue sending them, but I won't be able to publish them until I'm back at work I guess. In addition, I finally found the software for the camera and got it onto the computer, but now can't figure out how to post pictures. When I did my blog at work and was creating a post, there was a tab labeled html that I could click and link in a picture. Not on this computer am I seeing that tab, and I can't figure out how to do it otherwise. I've tried the help button, but the screens come up blank. Computers!!!!!!
Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Unfitness Hearing

Well, today was court date #1 for Olivia's TPR. I found a sitter, not an easy feat itself, and was able to go. The cw doing the kids' subsidies thought they MAY go ahead and do both hearings today if I was there, but we later found out they can't do both the same day anymore. Oh well, I was still able to go, it was a very quick hearing, and parents were found "unfit." Due to our vacation to visit the grandparents in FL July 11-31, the next date for best interest will take place August 15 at 10am. Seeing as Olivia's bday is Aug 16, what a gift that will be!

Braeden's subsidy paperwork is almost done, my homestudy is done, and we're very close on his adoption. Looking like August??? Let's hope! :)

Grandpa came to visit on Friday and the five of us went away for the weekend to our family reunion. We went to my uncle's and the kids were able to ride Commanche, an Appaloosa horse which they LOVE!!! They also got to ride the four-wheeler and feed some very cute kittens! Swimming in the pool at the hotel was also much enjoyed. Unfortunately I have been sick with a horrible cold that has made it's way into my chest, sinus', head, etc . I feel lousy!!! Didn't enjoy the hotel and swimming as much as I could've.

Grandma and Grandpa left today and the kids are sad. They miss them bunches! BUT, only two more weeks and we will be on a plane on our way there.

Still trying to find the software for my camera in order to download some new pics!
Sunday, June 18, 2006


Braeden's subsidy paperwork is DONE!!! The cw doing it went to work and it is done! She is bringing it over Monday morning to go over it with me, then I need to go over it with my lawyer and have him sign it before it can finally then be sent in!!! Yay!!! We are so close. She is also going to start Olivia's, even though we're not quite at that point yet. That way it's done and we don't have to wait.

Yesterday was such a great day. Being my birthday, I thought it would be fun to take the kids downtown on the train, especially since I had an extra pair of hands with grandma here. We then took the free trolley up to Watertower and went to the American Girl Place. Olivia has a Bitty Baby, although she never really understood what that meant until seeing this store: she had a blast. Since her birthday is coming up soon grandma let her pick out a new outfit for her baby. We then went to Cheesecake Factory for lunch where I almost started crying and just wanted to crawl into a hole. Shortly after sitting and getting our bread, Braeden grabbed a bread plate and simply flung it behind him, hitting the hard floor at the base of two tables of people. It shattered!!!! I about died!!! I couldn't believe it!!!! Needless to say everything breakable was moved out of range, he was pulled up right next to me and I basically fed him his lunch! AAAAHHHHHH!!!! The looks I got! Wow! Anyway, after that we went to a couple stores in Watertower. They have a new one which was a big hit - The #1 Blue Engine. A store that is ALL Thomas! So Braeden was able to pick out something too. We then took the trolley back to Millenium Park. The Joffrey Balley had a free performance which we watched for a while - so neat! We then went to the Crown Fountain. Very cool. Two huge rectangular towers covered with glass brick. Water comes out from the top and make an ankle deep "pool" at the bottom for kids to play in. On one side of each tower they put up a HUGE face of different Chicagoans. They look like a picture, but then maybe will blink an eye or smile. Every five min. or so a jet of water shoots out of their mouths. So cool! The kids had their swimsuits for this so they played a while and then watched a performance of African stomping. We then caught the train home where Braeden slept the whole way! :) A wonderful day!!!

I know, I know, when are you going to see a picture of Olivia's new hair??? Well, with working on the house (coming along great, I'll blog about that in a min.), now being off work and having kids full-time, and having my mom here visiting, Haven't had a lot of time on the new computer to hook up the camera and figure out how to download pics yet. Soon, soon. :)

The house like I said is coming along so well. I finally was able to get the wallpaper boarders out of Braeden and Olivia's rooms and paint them. They look great! I then moved all my boxes of books to his room and the three bookshelves and dining table and chairs to hers in order to pull up the carpet and padding in the living room and hall. I still need to take out the tack strips along the edges, but the floors look really good. Wednesday night the floor care people will call and come see the space to give me a final estimate, although they already gave me a preliminary one. More than I expected, or should I say hoped, but they will look so good and curtains, etc. can wait. They will most likely then start the floors on Friday. That way I can get the furniture back in.

In addition to everything else I had a message yesterday from Olivia's former cw. She had asked me a couple weeks ago about doing respite for someone she knew. The woman has, I think she said, foster kids of her former foster kids?, I am not sure, but regardless, she has a number of kids and her husband got sick all of sudden and then passed away. She said she may need respite for the 9month old, but definately wanted him back. Well, I guess she is just too overwhelmed and has given notice on two of the kids. Their agency, different from mine, cannot find a placement in the area and they may be moved. They still have siblings, I think at the house, and it would be very hard. Their caseworker is a former one of Braeden's who switched agencies. This cw friend of mine said if I was interested they may be able to work it out and gave me the name and number of the foster parent. She didn't say anything about ages/genders, so I definately would want to at least know that before calling the foster mother and getting her hopes up that they may stay in the area. So, I'm waiting to hear back from her. We'll see...

So, until I am on again, I am thinking about you all and your situations and praying for the very best.
Thursday, June 08, 2006
I have been tagged-

This is kinda funny-

1. YOUR MOVIE STAR NAME: (grandfather/grandmother on your father's side, your favorite candy): Merle Milky Way Midnight

2. YOUR "FLY GIRL/GUY" NAME: (first initial of first name followed by izzle", first two or three letters of your last name follwowed by "dizzle"): Lizzle Busizzle

3. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color, favorite animal): Orange Tiger

4. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (first 3 letters of your name- last 3 letters of mother's maiden name, first 3 letters of your pet's name repeated twice): Lisran Ras Ras

5. SUPERHERO NAME: ("The", your favorite color, the automobile you drive): The Orange Windstar

(OK - Julie - I'm an idiot, but it's fixed now!!! :) )

We ARE Alive!

Yes, it's been a while, but we are here! School is officially out and I find that I am not at the computer near as much as when I was inputting grades, typing assignments, and having planning periods daily at work.

Picked up grandma from the airport and she has been helping me around the house. We have the POD completely unloaded (finally) and it is being picked up tomorrow. Cable was (finally) hooked up today, and OOPS, they hooked it up wrong and instead of basic antenna service with the minimum channels for $17.50/month, they hooked me up with expanded cable with Disney and HGTV - which I love but was foregoing due to money. This happened the last time I moved four years ago and I ended up having expanded until they audited my area and found the mistake - a mere 2 1/2 years later! We'll see...

On the kid front - Olivia's hair is so cute! We are still having problems with her pulling her barrettes/clips out if we put any in so she is "banned" from "pretties" at school. As soon as I get the software set up on this computer which my parents so generously passed on to me after purchasing a new one for themselves, I will post a pic.

I was very worried about getting Braeden's subsidy paperwork done, but I actually think it is going to be done fairly soon. The person who will be doing it is the person who brought Braeden to my door at 3 days old. She was also the caseworker for the little 2 year old I was supposed to be adopting which turned into a fiasco. She ended up in another aspect of the agency, but we have kept in touch from time to time when I see her there. She knows what I've been through and wants to get it done quickly. She also told me she is going to start Olivia's subsidy paperwork too. Yay us!!!! I, unfortunately though, will not be completely convinced and assured until I know it is done and has been sent in to the state. Prayer that it happens soon!!!

Hope all is well with everyone else. :)
Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Girl's Day

Tomorrow Olivia and I are having a "girls day." We're dropping Braeden at day care, then she will come with me for my last hour of "teaching" for the year. After that, we have an appointment to get her hair cut... finally. I have really put it off because I'm so nervous about what it will look like, but it's what she wants. Oh well. It'll grow. :) After the hair cut we're meeting up with a friend of mine from high school and her two daughters. We'll show them our (crazy) new house and then the five of us are going to lunch at Ryan's - Olivia's favorite restaurant! After lunch my friend is taking her daughters the rest of the way to visit with friends in Indiana and Olivia and I are going to see The Wild at the movie theater. She likes going to movies, but mostly she LOVES the popcorn!!! She is too funny. I guess it is just not the same out of the microwave at home! After the movie we'll hit a store or two and then head to gymnastics. Braeden will finally be picked up after her gymnastics class. :) Should be lots of fun!
Tuesday, May 30, 2006


I mean, how many things can be thrown in your path when all you want to do is legally adopt the precious child who has been placed with you for over two years? Come on... it feels like for every one step forward there has to be two more back!

I just talked with Olivia's cw. She is the one who is doing the subsidy paperwork for Braeden's adoption. She had switched not long ago to working part time and primarily doing subsidies. She just told me that when she got to work this morning she was told that today was her last day!!! What??!!

Now, in a way, that's good news. She is an awesome person, who, while single had six children: biological, adoptive, and one foster. She was recently married and went to part time work with the agency. We've wanted to be "friends" and hang out, etc. for some time, but weren't able to due to our working relationship. So, now we'll be able to see each other outside the "job."

BUT - she doesn't know who will now be doing Braeden's subsidy paperwork. She also told me that a cw of Braeden's, 2 cws ago, was supposed to give me a questionnaire to fill out to begin my adoptive homestudy, but never did. So, I have paperwork to fill out that could have been done months ago, and once they figure out WHO is doing the subsidy work, that will have to get started, and completed, and sent in, etc. AHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!

Seriously, how many tests in patience does one person need?????


To answer a question - the "wagon" I was talking about was a kids pull along wagon! :) Not a car. :0) It's a Radio Flyer, LOVE it!!! It's a "regular" wagon, but then you can pull up each side of the bottom to make two "seats" with seat belts, cup holders, the works. Gotta love the seat belts. :)

What a Weekend

Whew... What a weekend! Crazy, but fun, was the theme of the day. With such high temperatures all of a sudden, we had a lot of fun playing outside each day.

Friday night we ended up able to pick up Olivia's brother, J2, earlier than we had planned. He did well. There were a couple times he "shut down," but all in all it went really well.

Sat morning, with J2 still here, my friend T came over with Braeden's brother and sister. What a crew! We all went to lunch together and then drove the 1 1/2 hours up to drop off J2 with the transporter. Turning around in the parking lot, we drove straight back and picked up a friend of mine to attend an anniversary party. After returning home and showing my friend around the new place, the kids and I went for a walk in our new wagon! It even has seatbelts so Braeden won't be able to take off on us! :)

Sunday brought church and a day of playing outside in the little pool.

Monday we went up to Lincoln Park Zoo (free entrance fee, but do you think we found a free parking spot - oh no!). Of course Braeden's favorite part was the farm!!! I was surprised though that on such a hot day they didn't have the little jets of water going for the kids to play in. Maybe next time. After leaving the zoo we drove south a ways toward my friend T's. We were invited for BBQ! We spent a little time tooling around Toys R Us before we had to be at T's. We then got to their house and had major amounts of food while the kids played like crazy.

So much fun in such a short time!!!

We are now looking ahead excitedly to Saturday - when we pick up Grandma from the airport. My mom and dad live in Florida, where they retired after teaching. She'll be with us until June 23rd, when Grandpa will fly in to join us. We will be going to a family reunion out of town for the weekend. Then they will fly back the 27th. My mom and I will be spending lots of time peeling wallpaper border and painting!!!
Friday, May 26, 2006

Communication, What's That?

I am so sick and tired of the lack of, or mis-, communication within this lovely system. I am with Julie on that! I have had too many instances to name of miscommunication, or no communication! Right now I'm frustrated that the caseworker who is supposed to visit our home once a week and has a set day and time, has completely missed the last two without calling and I have been the one to have to call the agency and get it reset. Right now I could really have used that extra hour or so I could have kept them at day care those days in order to unpack and move things into the house. In addition, we are "supposed" to be driving an hour and a half tonight to pick up J's brother for an overnight visit. His caseworker, with a different agency, said the transporters would be calling me to set up times and meeting places. Yeah, right. I have heard from no one. I know we're supposed to pick him up around 5, but have no idea where. I know that tomorrow will probably be a drop off time of around 1, but no idea where or for sure when. I called their agency yesterday and left a message, no response. I told Braeden's caseworker yesterday who didn't seem real concerned. I called and left a message for Olivia's caseworker this morning but she isn't in yet (It's still early) and don't know what she can really do anyway. Unreal! I am not driving an hour and a half to a suburb of Chicago without knowing a time and place to meet!!!!!! So frustrating! Sorry - had to vent! :0)

Names Part 2

Now that B and J are (almost) finished with termination, and adoption, we've started to change over their names.

Their new names will be: Braeden Lucas and Olivia J...

As I stated previously, I've called B, Braeden at home off and on since he was born. We are now calling him Braeden B so that he and others can get used to the "new" name and will then drop the B and just call him Braeden. Lucas is a special family name. J has known since she came to live with me that this is why I would call him Braeden at home on occasion. She has talked for a year of changing her name too. I kept putting her off to make sure she understood what that meant. She was emphatic, so I choose 6 names I loved, and she in turn found one to call her own: Olivia. We are keeping J as her middle name. As soon as termination happens for her we will begin calling her J Olivia to transition to her new name as well.

So, long story short I will begin calling them by their new names in my blogs.
Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Meet The Family

Well, since B is officially terminated, and J is only a month or two away, I have decided to post their picture. This is my favorite one right now.

So... Meet Braeden Lucas and Olivia J...

My two, very soon to be legal, children! :)

It's A Date!

We finally have our first TPR court date for J!!! Yesterday, the date of June 27 was set for the unfitness hearing. After that will come best interest and then termination. We're on our way! Adoption, here we come!
Friday, May 19, 2006

Home Sweet Home

Well, we are finally in our new place. I LOVE it!!! It is going to be so great for so many reasons. And if you read my last post, you can tell the kids, especially B, love it too.

The one thing that will be difficult to get used to is the fact that I now will be living in the city where I teach. I already had two 6th grade girls who came over to "visit" as I was hauling stuff in after they were home from school. One family lives right across the street from me. I have two of their kids in Language Arts and Study Hall, one being one of the girls who stopped over. My life will essentially be under a microscope. And not from always the best of people. Such is the one drawback of living where I am.

The only bad thing from yesterday's experience, aside from the fact that the closing to sell mine took almost two hours and the closing for my new one took 15 min!, was that I ended up with about half the money I thought I would after the completion of the sale ( minus my new downpayment and paying off a loan ). So I'm back to refiguring and working on deciding what I absolutely need at this point in time - such as finishing the fence in the back yard to allow the kids free reign without my worry of them ending up floating away in the river that is very close by! I also am in NEED (no matter what some may think) of putting in a dishwasher. I did not have one in this last house and while it wasn't a big deal with just me, with kids in the mix it's a nightmare. There are always dishes to be done, especially cups it seems! Beyond that, curtains and a little tikes picnic table that I wanted, etc, I'm waiting and will get things once in a while as time goes by.

But the house itself is great. It'll take a while yet to unpack the POD and get everything situated, not to mention the removal of wallpaper border in 5 rooms (I am just not a wall paper person!), painting, etc, but we're on our way. Can't wait to see what the future holds!


B says the funniest things right now! Two examples from the past few days:

We were driving in our loaner car (since the van is in the collision shop after my little accident a little while ago) and there are not tinted windows in the back like ours. The sun was in his eyes and he was doing everything to let us know he was not happy about it. It then went behind a cloud and B said, "Goodbye sun! See you tomorrow!"

The other happened this morning and while it was frustrating at the time, it was also cute. We finally moved to our new house yesterday. Upon leaving this morning, B broke out into the most pitiful crying episode, screaming "New house!" He was not happy to leave his new place!
Friday, May 12, 2006

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to all mothers. No matter your status: with children, waiting for children, pregnant, fostering, whatever the situation, this is for you. The following was sent to me by someone at work. It is a wonderful testament to mothers everywhere...

This is for the mothers who have sat up all night with sick toddlers intheir arms, wiping up barf laced with Oscar Mayer wieners and cherryKool-Aid saying, "It's okay honey, Mommy's here." Who have sat inrocking chairs for hours on end soothing crying babies who can't becomforted.

This is for all the mothers who show up at work with spit-up in their hair and milk stains on their blouses and diapers in their purse.

For all the mothers who run carpools and make cookies and sew Halloween costumes. And all the mothers who DON'T.

This is for the mothers who gave birth to babies they'll never see.
And the mothers who took those babies and gave them homes.

This is for the mothers whose priceless art collections are hanging on their refrigerator doors. And for all the mothers who froze their buns on metal bleachers at football or soccer games instead of watching from the warmth of their cars, so that when their kids asked, "Did you see me, Mom?" they could say, "Of course, I wouldn't have missed it for the world," and mean it.

This is for all the mothers who yell at their kids in the grocery store and swat them in despair when they stomp their feet and scream for ice cream before dinner. And for all the mothers who count to ten instead, but realize how child abuse happens.

This is for all the mothers who sat down with their children and explained all about making babies. And for all the (grand) mothers who wanted to, but just couldn't find the words.

This is for all the mothers who go hungry, so their children can eat. For all the mothers who read "Goodnight, Moon" twice a night for a year. And then read it again. "Just one more time."

This is for all the mothers who taught their children to tie their shoelaces before they started school. And for all the mothers who opted for Velcro instead.

This is for all the mothers who teach their sons to cook and their daughters to sink a jump shot.

This is for every mother whose head turns automatically when a little voice calls "Mom?" in a crowd, even though they know their own offspring are at home -- or even away at college.

This is for all the mothers who sent their kids to school with stomachaches, assuring them they'd be just FINE once they got there, only to get calls from the school nurse an hour later asking them to please pick them up. Right away.

This is for mothers whose children have gone astray, who can't find the words to reach them.

This is for all the step-mothers who raised another woman's child or children, and gave their time, attention, and love... sometimes totally unappreciated!

For all the mothers who bite their lips until they bleed when their14-year-olds dye their hair green.

For all the mothers of the victims of recent school shootings, and the mothers of those who did the shooting. For the mothers of the survivors, and the mothers who sat in front of their TVs in horror, hugging their child who just came home from school, safely.

This is for all the mothers who taught their children to be peaceful, and now pray they come home safely from a war.

What makes a good Mother anyway? Is it patience? Compassion? Broad hips? The ability to nurse a baby, cook dinner, and sew a button on a shirt, all at the same time? Or is it in her heart?

Is it the ache you feel when you watch your son or daughter disappear down the street, walking to school alone for the very first time? The jolt that takes you from sleep to dread, from bed to crib at 2 A.M. to put your hand on the backof a sleeping baby? The panic, years later, that comes again at 2 A.M. when you just want to hear their key in the door and know they are safe again in your home? Or the need to flee from wherever you are and hug your child when you hear news of a fire, a car accident, a child dying?

The emotions of motherhood are universal and so our thoughts are for young mothers stumbling through diaper changes and sleep deprivation...And mature mothers learning to let go. For working mothers and stay-at-home mothers. Single mothers and married mothers. Mothers with money, mothers without. This is for you all. For all of us. Hang in there.

In the end we can only do the best we can. Tell them every day that we love them. And pray.

Home is what catches you when you fall - and we all fall."


Well, God certainly has had His hand in things here in the last day! Yesterday as of 2pm I still had not heard a thing about the closing on my house, that was originally to be today. My realtor thought it may not be going through at all. At 2pm I sent out an email to friends and family asking for prayer for the situation. In the email I asked that they pray for any type of financing to make this happen. I also stated that we hoped to be in our new home within the week. Remember, this was sent Thursday. At 2:30, just 30 min later, I received a phone call from my realtor. She said she couldn't believe it, but the sale and closing were going through, but not until next Thursday. I said, that's fine, I don't care, we can do a week. A week! It hit me that that is exactly what I had prayed. All day long I had worked on being patient and remembering God was in control, not me. My realtor then told me that my buyer's lender had had 24 Ameridream loans they were trying to push through. 22 ended up going through, mine had NOT been one of them. They were calling everyone they could think of and finally were able to get the buyers other financing! Exactly what I had prayed - again! My realtor was even told that this was "a miracle." And that's just what it was!!!!!

6 more days and counting...
Thursday, May 11, 2006

Let Me Off!!!

The past day and a half has been a rollercoaster ride I want to get off of - and I LOVE rollercoasters normally! Starting from receiving the phone call about B's appeal being denied I thought: I'm on cloud nine, nothing else means anything, etc.

That afternoon, five minutes before picking up the kids from day care, three days before we were to move on Friday, I got A CALL. The kind of call I have not had for over a year since Jcame to live with me. The kind of call I had been itching for in the last couple months. A call for a placement. A two year old girl. Oh My Gosh! I wanted to say yes in a heartbeat. I wanted to, I wanted to, I couldn't. Not with having nothing in our house. Not with having my minivan packed to the max in preparation for the move and no room for a third car seat. Not today. I called back to say no, after the most agonizing ten minutes I've had in a long time. Ended up they didn't need the placement after all. My agency was secondary, another was first, and they ended up finding a placement for her.

Whew! I thought what a lot to thing through in one day. (There is also something else going on that I'm not really at liberty to talk through over the internet, sorry. :( ) But, then, Wednesday brought even more.

We had our home visit with B's cw on Wednesday. She told me that they may have a "possibility" for me. Now, I've had a couple other "possibilities" before. You get your hopes up, start thinking about where they'd sleep, what clothes you have that might fit them, how they would "fit" in your family, etc. You start to bond with a child you know absolutely nothing about other than their age and gender. Crazy, but it happens. So, while I'm not convinced this will definately happen, I do have hopes, I can't deny it.

The cw told me that they had a newborn come into care. The newborn boy was placed with a relative. That relative placement already has three of their siblings. A 9 MONTH old!!! And while I was in shock from her telling me that, she said the ages of the other two which I didn't quite hear, but am pretty sure they are both under 6. So now they have a newborn, a 9 month old, and two others under 6! She said that the agency doesn't think it will probably work out due to the other three they already have. She and J's cw have already talked about how I was hoping for another baby. So... We'll see. :0) Perfect case scenario would be for them to try it for a month and then decide they can't do best for him due to the situation and then call me in June. That way school is over and we're in the new house. But I won't hold my breath - not too much anyway! :)

Ok, so then when I was practically on cloud nine thinking B and J are headed to adoption, I may get a new baby, etc. the dreaded phone just has to ring. My realtor. She said she had some bad news and the closing will not be happening on Friday. WHAT???

The people buying my house are going through FHA with the Ameridream program. Yesterday Ameridream put a freeze on all money going out. While I could understand freezing money for new people just applying for financing, how on earth can you justify freezing money for people you have already approved and are about to close??? My realtor is supposed to find out more today. She said they will let some through to continue but we're not sure who yet and Friday will NOT happen no matter what. They are hoping to get it to go through by Monday. So, we have clothes through Sat, no food, hardly anything at all in the house, I've already sold the dryer, and my van, packed to the max I tell you, is supposed to go into the shop Monday to be repaired. Pray we can close Monday!!! It not only affects me, but the people whose house I'm buying and the house they are buying. The family currently in the house I'm buying also has two small children so I'm sure they're in a similar boat. I know it's not my fault, but I feel terrible.

What on earth will today bring???
Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Hip, Hip, Hooray!... They've Known For How Long???

The best voice mail message I've ever received - "Hello, I'm just calling to let you know we found out today that B's appeal has been dismissed." !!! Done !!! As in, parental rights are no more, as in I can officially adopt him, as in we can start calling him by his soon-to-be-new name, as in YAYYYYYYYY!!!

After then speaking to his newest caseworker, she tells me that they happened to find this out yesterday in court for another case. The judge was asked about B's case and he said, "Oh, yes, we've had that decision done since February." FEBRUARY!? Are you KIDDING??? Two and a half months ago this decision was made: February 24, 2006. Which means that had we found out then we could have finished the subsidy paperwork, sent it in, waited the 4-6 weeks it usually takes and be getting it back by now. I would have been able to submit it this week to get an adoption date!!! And now, now it will most likely be mid to late July or early August that we get it back from the state!!! AHHHHHH!!!

But, the silver lining, I DO know that it is finished, I DO know that he is MINE! :)
Monday, May 08, 2006


Well we had our first (and hopefully last!) issue with stealing over the weekend. As I was doing our final loads of laundry in our current house, I discovered a pony tail holder and play doll baby key which I knew were definately not ours. After J was up from her nap I told her I had found something in her pockets while doing laundry that I knew she had taken from somewhere because they weren't ours. I reminded her how important telling the truth is, especially to family, and that I wanted her to be able to tell me how these items got into her pocket. I showed them to her and she was immediately weepy and said that they were from day care. I looked her right in the eyes and told her how proud I was that she told me the truth. I then asked her why she took them, and she said that she wanted ones like that. We discussed want and need and all the fun things we already have. I let her know she would need to give them back on Monday, telling day care what had happened and that it will not happen again. I again praised her for telling the truth and talking to me about it. I know that this is a pretty age appropriate thing, but also want to be sure to handle it right the first time so that hopefully it won't happen again. We'll see... :)
Friday, May 05, 2006

One Week and Counting...

Only one more week until we move!!! I cannot tell you how much I am looking forward to this! Not just to get out of our now practically empty house, but also to "start" our new phase of our life. This move seems like the beginning of so very much. A new school district for J to begin kindergarten in, a great neighborhood with parks, etc, a "new" house without all the updating to finish, a "real" family area, etc. Just so many things to look forward to.

And, I must admit, I'm excited about decorating again. B's room will pretty much be the same as it is now since it was JUST redone: his cute new dino quilt from grandma and grandpa, red sheets, blue IKEA bed, dresser, and shelves, khaki/tan walls, red IKEA curtains. Very boyish!

J's room will be completely different: it is now all Wizard of Oz. I had painted huge coloring book pages on the walls (apple tree, wizard in balloon, flying monkey, and lots of flowers) in preparation for kids, the floor is painted green (wood) with a yellow "brick" road, etc. The bunkbeds are loft style and impossible for me to change the top one. We sold the bunks, bought her a gorgeous quilt at PBK (1/2 price!) and are going to do her new room around that. She LOVES red, but it was near impossible to find something girly that had red, so we did the next best thing and found a quilt that has a very dark pink, she actually kind of thinks it's red. We're going to pull the light green out of the quilt to do the walls and are buying white beds. Should look great.

The living room will have my three book shelves and table and chairs that match and are an antique stain (from IKEA again). The walls with be a "spa/robin's egg" blue. I want to then sometime get a brown leather loveseat and some kind of chair and table for a sitting area. We will mostly "live" in our basement/family room.

I can't wait!!! :) J has been a huge helper on what she thinks will look good (though it's mostly what I like, I think.) Maybe someday she will be the host of Trading Spaces or Sell That House! :)
Monday, May 01, 2006


Ahhh, siblings. I could write a book on this topic alone. This will be a long one, you may want to read this another time! :)

We'll start with B's side. As you may remember, B has a slightly older brother and sister who are with a friend of mine as foster children. They are going through the termination/adoption process at the same time as B. Since my friend has them, we see each other on occasion. She moved a bit farther north this past year which, when added to their incredibly busy lifestyle, has made it more difficult to see each other, but we do. In fact, we were just at their home yesterday. B's brother (J) turned five!!! I can't believe it! He was just this little 19 month old when she first got them. His sister (L) is now three!

I always knew that nature and nurture were both extremely important in personality development, but now I have witnessed first hand some interesting tidbits. As B has gotten into those perverbial "terrible twos" he has become quite strong-willed. You may giggle, but those who have been around him much know what I'm talking about. A friend and her husband came by with their one year old a few months ago to help plane the bottom of a couple doors in my house. B isn't used to other children in "his" home I guess, first thing he did was bite his nose!!! I couldn't believe it. He also hits, a lot. Now, I kept thinking, I know there are some pretty aggressive kids in his day care class, the pros and cons of day care, but what am I doing wrong??? Besides this one incident, if B does not get his way, right away, he looks you in the eye and hits the nearest thing, be it book, table, curtains, whatever. He has also been known to yell "Don't want it" if he is mad about a time out or having to give up on banging his horse into the very breakable glass window. I thought, what am I doing wrong???

Then we spent an afternoon a couple weeks ago with his brother and sister, J and L. :) Let me tell you, B has nothing on L! Whew! That girl gave me a run for my money and I wasn't even disciplining her! I really hope that we are able to head off a lot of what we saw out of her! Wow! Talk about a battle of wills! :) They sure do LOVE their little brother though! And although B does not truly understand that they are his siblings, he will. And hopefully we will continue with our friendship and ability to get the kids together.

NOW - J is a whole different story. You may remember she came to me with her older brother, J2. J2 had a lot of problems that really came out about two months into his placement. Bio mom had decided to come back to town and take up visits again after almost a year. We saw LOTS of acting out, in some pretty major ways, especially considering there was a 3 and 1 year old in home as well. As much as I understood this, I teach special education and deal with some pretty raw behaviors there too, it was difficult to deal with behaviors at school, and then also at home. With B becoming very scared and J being practically neglected of attention at times, it was not working. I unfortunately had to give notice, but did convey that J was doing well with us. I felt that if this was going to become a pattern for him it was unfair to place her in a position of losing placements due to his actions. At his second hospitalization, with notice turned in, they agreed, and made him specialized. He was then placed in July with a family almost three hours away.

We were all made aware that J and J2 would need lots of visits, probably two each month, since they were all each other had had for so very long. I was more than willing. This other family turned out to be just what he needed. Two parents, a male role model, three older siblings, and one his age. The first time we talked, that foster mom seemed great. She wanted them to keep in contact, even after the adoptions, etc.

The very first visit we scheduled, things started to unravel. At the beginning of August, we scheduled a visit for a Sat at the end of Aug. She had told me that she doesn't drive and that we would have to do them on weekends around her husband's schedule. I said that was perfect. The week before the visit I asked about plans for the visit and meeting halfway, which is a suburb of Chicago. She said that her husband was working and couldn't do it, but she would work something out. She then told her agency that I had cancelled at the last minute and the visit had changed and he needed transportation! Ended up her sister was coming even further south and we scheduled the visit at a McDonald's about 45 min from us. We drove there that day, waiting another 45 min and they never showed!!! I got home to two messages that they were running late and stuck in traffic. She hadn't called my cell and then didn't call back again.

Our agency had to step in. Long story short, we have had 3 visits since July!!! I sometimes have called with dates to be told she'll check the calendar and get back to me, with no return call, etc. I put together an entire packet of ideas for things to do halfway between us. Nothing. I finally drove the kids the whole 3 hours there and back for 1 visit and J's caseworker picked him up there for another. She then has told her agency a few times that she has left me messages and I don't return her calls!!!

So, now J2's agency is stepping in. We are doing two visits a month where I drive halfway and a transporter drives J2 halfway, the other foster family isn't doing anything. One Fri a month I will leave school, pick up my kids, drive 1 1/2 hours to pick up J2, go out to eat, and drive 1 1/2 hours back home. Only to then practically put them all to bed, have a visit the next day, and then drive him back 1 1/2 hours and then back home. So, 6 hours driving and - on a toll road - 12 tolls! Then the other weekend in the month we will just go up there for a few hours visit and come back, 3 hours and 6 tolls of driving. With gas prices and all... wow.

BUT - I have had people say I don't HAVE to do this, I'm letting them WALK all over me, etc. I guess some may look at it that way. BUT, J NEEDS to see J2. And I will do whatever I need to to be sure that happens. If visits right now are mandated and they're not happening, what on earth will happen when the adoptions go through???? She loves her brother. She needs to be connected to him however we can accomplish that.
Thursday, April 27, 2006


Ok, I just talked with the cw. I guess it was the state itself that didn't publish or didn't publish for all involved parties. Whatever it was it was not the agency's fault. So I guess that's good, but still, come on. Another month lapses in actual people's lives...


Well. The intern came for the home visit yesterday and after not hearing back from the cw, I was about jumping down his throat for info on J's termination. Well, ok, not really, but he was in the house not two min before I asked if the cw had given him the info on what happened at court.

Me: "So did **** tell you what happened at court today?"

Intern: "Oh, I was there with her! I can tell you!"

Me: "Do you have the dates? When is termination?"

Intern: "Well," with slight grin, or is that a grimace, "we don't have them yet."

Me: "What do you mean we don't have them yet?!"

Intern: "Because the info that need to be published in the paper trying to contact the bios never was published and we had to push the date back. It will be published tomorrow and then it will have been published for the necessary 30 days when the next court date happens on May 23."


I really need that patience and understanding God! :)
Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Pins and Needles

Well, today is the day J's cw is supposed to go to court in order to have the termination dates scheduled. I'm waiting on pins and needles, hoping she will call when she has them in her datebook. I'm having a home visit today with the intern so maybe she will send the dates with him... but will she??? I just want to know!!! :)

In other news, on top of everything else that's going on right now: moving!!!, adoption plans, etc. I got into a car accident on Friday! My stupid fault, no one was hurt, their car hardly had anything but a couple scrapes on the bumper, but mine, well it sure looked ok the day of the crash. Must have had me fooled. We didn't see any damage that day, but Saturday I walked around the front to get B from the other side and happened to look down. There must have been a crack in the grill because it is now almost completely cracked in half and separating. The grill and headlight panel need to be replaced as well as the bumper touched up, though I'm not worried about that. And what is my deductable in all this, since I've only ever had one car accident in my life, and didn't think it needed to be real low??? $500! May not seem like too very much, but in the midst of moving it's like a mountain that rose up out of a molehill.

God, grant me patience and good stewardship over Your money right now! :)
Tuesday, April 25, 2006


Circus admission for three: $12

Three hot dogs, one bottled water, cotton candy, and two bags of peanuts: $12

Two bounce house tickets: $6

One pony ride: $4

J's face after riding the pony, and B's face when the elephants came in: Priceless!!!
Monday, April 24, 2006

Simple Things

J has had a few very cute comments lately in regards to adoption.

Like I said previously we do talk about it and it's a subject not put in hiding. Almost any time I'm reading a book she asks, "Is that about adopted?" I do read quite a few books on adoption, but not every one is! :)

Besides this, I also have one of the highly popular "rubber" bracelets. Mine is purple and white and says "Adoption = Love." She likes this bracelet and wants one for herself. I've shared with her how I've already ordered and received these for her, B, my parents, and the kids' Godparents when that day finally comes and the adoptions are final. A short time ago we were talking to someone about the adoption and I asked J to tell them what adoption will mean for us. Of course I expected her to say "We will be a forever family," or something like this that we talk about all the time. Oh no - instead she said "A bracelet!!!!" :) Too cute!

Prior to J coming to live with me she shared a bedroom with her brother. She has had issues with going to bed by herself which we have worked on the past year. I have seen this in a number of foster children I've had. They're still there though for J, even after one year. She sleeps with her comforter or blanket pulled over her head. Only once have I allowed her to sleep in the same bed as me, though she has asked a number of times. On that occasion she was very ill, her bed had been thrown up on, and I couldn't bring myself to completely make and clean her bed in the wee hours of the morning. I know it is a big no-no, with her being a foster child, but she did sleep in my bed that one night. Anyway, the other day J asked me, "When I'm adopted can I sleep in your bed???" We had such a "serious" discussion on how hard it is to sleep alone in a room and how after she's adopted if there are any really scary nights, especially with bad storms, then yes, she could probably sleep in my bed. :)

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About Me

I am a single mom to four amazing kids; each of whom just happen to have been adopted. The first three were adopted through foster care, and we just completed an international adoption from Haiti. Our family has grown through adoption and I am all the more blessed to know each of my children. I worship a mighty God, teach Special Ed, love bargains, and am inspired by Pinterest... come along with us for the ride!

Olivia - 14

Olivia - 14

Braeden - 11

Braeden - 11

Liam - 9

Liam - 9

Macy - 5

Macy - 5

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What you should know about HIV

-HIV can NOT be spread through casual/household contact. HIV is not spread through hugging, kissing, shaking hands, sharing toys, sneezing, coughing, sharing food, sharing drinks, bathing, swimming or any other casual way. It has been proven that HIV and AIDS can only be spread through sexual contact, birth, breastfeeding and blood to blood contact (such as sharing needles). - HIV is now considered a chronic but manageable disease. With treatment, people who are HIV+ can live indefinitely without developing AIDS and can live long and full lives. - People who are HIV+ deserve to be treated with love, respect, support and acceptance as all people do. Additional information on transmission of HIV can be found on the Center for Disease Control website:

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Orphan Crisis

• 147 million orphans in the world
• 50 million orphans in Africa 
• Every 14 seconds a child is orphaned by AIDS
• 16,000,000 have been orphaned by AIDS
• Every week, AIDS claims as many lives as American fatalities in the Vietnam War
• 854 million people do not have enough to eat
• Malnutrition is associated with the deaths of 5 million children under the age of five
• Every 2 seconds an orphan dies from malnutrition

Hence the title of my blog

Little Did I Know

Little did I know that the road would be so rocky
Little did I know that the trip would take so long
Little did I know that my heart could hurt so much
Little did I know that God is never wrong

Little did I know that love could be so powerful
Little did I know that a dream so far could go
Little did I know that God would place the right ones
Little did I know that my heart, so large, could grow

Little did I know that a dream has it’s own timing
Little did I know that this day would finally come
Little did I know that four souls would be sent to guide me
Little did I know that they would choose to call me mom

But God knew all along and He had a plan to follow
God knew all along that my dream would soon come true
God knew all along that we five should be together
God knew all along that I’d share it all with you