Friday, February 23, 2007


What a blessing our Little One is. Not that I didn't think this before, but in the last couple of days I have come to find out that it was a miracle he was even placed with me.

This "new" rule our agency has of placing children within five miles of the birth family isn't as new as I thought. It began in July.

Our licensing workers are the ones who do the placing of children. My friend J met with ours yesterday to update J's information. J and I both have had a lot of issues with the agency lately, some of which I mentioned in my caseworker post. We have thought seriously about transferring our license or trying to get a dual agency license.

Besides the caseworker, we have had issues with the newer supervisor as well. He is a nice enough person, but doesn't know his job and seems to not have a lot of common sense I guess you could say. Just a lot of little things such as not knowing the car seat laws for our state, which the caseworkers aren't even following. Driving Little One in a forward facing seat, with only the top buckle buckled when he was 9 months old! Whatever are they thinking???

Anyway, we both aren't ones to just call and complain, but rather try to work with the people themselves to get things moving. We haven't called our licensing worker to discuss our concerns, never really thought of it. So when J and our licenser were talking yesterday all of this "stuff" came out.

I guess she couldn't believe the things J was telling her. She also relayed some of my "issues" and the worker is supposed to be calling me. She went on to tell J that she and I are her two best foster parents in our area and she feels horrible about the rule in place. She came right out and said that she has been given the names of five families in our area whom she is to place children with, period. She said that (obviously) we weren't on the list. She also said that these homes were not only not good, but now had 5 or 6 kids each and she has felt horrible knowingly placing children in bad situations and now so many there together, especially when she knows that J really wants a placement and I would be willing to take one as well.

Anyway, back to my blessing. The day Little One was placed with me my licensing worker called me on my cell as he was being dropped off. She had heard I had a new placement. She sounded actually a little irked on the phone and I couldn't figure out why. I thought maybe because our caseworker had placed him and not talked with her??? I didn't know.

Well, now I know. That rule went into effect in July, I am not on "the LIST", and technically he never should have been placed with me. I'm sure my licesing worker received flack for that and that is why she was upset.

God knew he needed to be placed with someone who would be committed to working through his developmental issues. He worked around the rule. He knew what Little One needed.

What a blessing!
Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Getting Well

I guess Braeden is OK. Once the Motrin kicked in, he has been absolutely fine. He woke up a little warm this morning, but nothing like yesterday. I did notice that he is getting a molar, but still his fever was so high yesterday. No other symptoms at all so I have no idea what it could have been. I guess we're back to normal for tomorrow. Kids, I tell ya. :)
Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Walk Like a Man

We (almost) have a walker in the house!!!

Little One decided tonight was the night to start "walking." He began by pushing Braeden's Kinderzeat around the room, which Braeden wasn't happy about. "He pushing my chair mom!" So we went down and got the actual walker. He loved it!!! Here we go!...


AHHH!!!! Just when I thought we were on the road to recovery and warmth (no sick kids, and temps in the 40s!), Life once again rams it's fist at you. Yesterday was great - warm outside, got back my tax return, stopped at the appliance place to get the process started on a proposal for all new kitchen appliances, Braeden had a GREAT day at day care, etc. We got up and going this morning, everything seemed fine. First hour I got a call, Braeden had a 102.5 fever. Which I think was taken under his arm, making it technically a 103.5 fever!!! Yuck!!! So I called the office to find me a sub and wrote out lesson plans for today and tomorrow since he wouldn't be able to return to day care with that kind of temp today. There goes some of my tax money as I have no sick days left! Yuck!!! Poor buddy. He was sitting at the breakfast table shivering saying he was cold, when she felt him he was burning up. He didn't even want to eat any waffles. He's down for a nap now. He seems better. We watched some Barney and he did finally eat half a sandwich and some applesauce. Money out the window! Yuck yuck yuck! I brought some things home from school so I could at least get some work done. Yeah, we'll see. :)
Monday, February 19, 2007

Caseworker... Blues???

Well, as I've hinted at recently, we have had some issues with our current caseworker. She's worked with us since last spring in varying degrees and recently we have really had some problems. Well, I've had some problems with her. I've caught her in lies, etc. Not the best situation.

Anyway, she has cancelled the last two weeks of home visits which are set for every Monday at 4:30pm. Two Mondays ago she called around 4 to say she left the office early because she wasn't feeling well. She said she still wasn't feeling well and would not be at the visit that evening which the CASA worker was coming to, and asked me to tell the CASA worker as she did not have the number to reach her. In the background was a very boisterous little one. She has no kids.

Last Monday she called early to see if she could move the visit up. I had taken Olivia up north for an early doctor's appt and we then were going to do some thrift shopping. I ended up only spending a small amount of time at one store as that is the moment when my illness really decided to rear it's ugly head. Anyway, the cw had called on the way to the store while we were still a long way from home. She told me that the office was closing early and she was to do her visits earlier. I had to say, sorry, but we had planned on 4:30 and I wouldn't be home before then. We cancelled the visit. I later found out that the office had closed early, but that they were told to continue working, they just couldn't be in the office due to sewer gas fumes. She lied! (The last of a few I've actually caught her in.)

Today, no one had still shown up for our 4:30 home visit. At 4:50 I called the office to see if she was even in today. I was told she no longer works there!!!!! OK!!! Well, then who is our caseworker??? Crazy!

My friend who has a 3 year old through the same agency had been having some problems with her as well and we have heard rumors that many complaints were coming in about her. So, either she quit or was "let go," but either way we have no worker right now. Unreal.
Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Sledding Fun

I really am surprised that we had today off. It was a gorgeous day. The sun melted all the snow off my car by mid-afternoon and the temperature wasn't bad at all. After naps we had a snack and bundled up to walk down to "the" sledding hill in our area. It is at the end of our block, and it's funny to look outside and see the street lined with cars from people who are sledding. We buckled Little One in the baby sled and I pulled him while Braeden walked with me and Olivia followed up the rear with the "big kid" sled. After going down a few times and people repeatedly saying how cute and brave and funny they were (they get huge grins, scream, and go super fast!), they went down what would be their final ride. Little One was getting antsy, I was getting tired of the wait while they walked back up, and I could tell they were at the point where it wouldn't be much fun anymore. On their way back up from this run, I look down to see Braeden take his hat off. He was swinging it around (like a cowboy) and I could imagine him saying "Yee Haw" although I couldn't hear him from where I was with all the many other people around. I turned to talk to Olivia who had just reached the top and when I looked back down Braeden had removed his mittens! He then started to unzip his coat and I all but rushed down the hill to him. I get there and he says, "I'm chilly mama." Are you kidding!!!! You are taking off your things in the middle of winter, of course you're "chilly"! I told him why he was chilly, zipped up his coat and hiked us back up the hill. At the top he was about chattering his teeth. We got his mittens back on and I could tell the hat he had chosen (it had a sailboat on it, so of course it had to be worn, not the plain black warm one! Duh!) was thin and wet through. I took off my hat and placed it on his head. He said "Ahhh..." and we walked back to the house. Maybe we need to learn more formally about cold and hot and what would cause us to feel a certain way while we are outside!? :) LOL

Blizzard Warning!

Our Blizzard warning was extended through to this morning at 9am. Not sure why, because it looks ok outside today - no blowing, snowing, etc - BUT at 5:40 I got THE CALL. NO SCHOOL!!! Wow!!! Another free day to spend with the kids! We sure don't get many of those during the school year! :) And we're all healthy too!

It's now 10:40 am. The kids have been up, eaten breakfast, the boys had a bath, Olivia and Braeden played outside, and now Little One is down for nap and the rest of us are watching Because of Winn Dixie. I happened to find this not long ago at Big Lots for $1.99!!! It's so new I was really surprised. And I wasn't sure if Braeden would sit through it or not, but we put it on one other time and he was just like today - mesmerized! He hasn't moved. He cracks up when Winn Dixie makes a mess, and asks why Opal is sad at times. It's so cute. Little One still has a visit today at 1, so I put him down hoping he'll sleep a good while to make up for no afternoon nap. So far so good, he's been down about 30 min.

They had a lot of fun outside today with all the extra snow. I think we ended up with 8 inches they said. I ended up having to shovel last night after the crew was in bed, the life of a single mom! I was whipped. Shoveling a driveway with 7 or so inches! Whew! But it looks pretty good. With all the blowing, some places also have quite big drifts. We have one in the front about 3 feet tall which Olivia decided she would try to sled down. It was so funny. The first time, right after this picture, she sat in the sled and it went backwards. She lay on the snow cracking up! Then she went down forwards once. Braeden received a new horse for Valentine's Day from Grandma and Grandpa and it had to go in the tub with him, outside in the snow with him (as you can see in the photo), and is now watching the movie with him! :) He LOVES horses I tell you!

We're in for a nice day! :)

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Kids Say the Darndest

When my friend came over today with her three year old, the little girl waked in the door and said, "Braeden, where did your hair go?" LOL!

Our latest sleep walking quote, Olivia came to my room last night rubbing her eyes and said, "I can't get to sleep, it's too dark!" She was definately out of it. I wanted to laugh so hard, but I hugged her, said goodnight, and sent her back to bed. Needless to say, she didn't remember a word of it today!

Winter Storm Warning!!!

We have a winter storm, if you haven't heard! :) Which means for us - NO SCHOOL !!!!
Olivia was very bummed, first she hears no school, which she LOVES, and then she isn't even going to her day care provider's for the day! Man, bummer, a whole day with mom and the boys! :) LOL She was excited when I told her that she and Braeden would be able to play out in the front yard, though. These pics were taken with mom and Little One safe and warm inside!!! Olivia was so cute helping Braeden down the steps to the yard. They had a blast, and mom had 45 min of "rest" from the activity. Then inside for some hot cocoa!

This "rest" was much needed, as was the snow day, since I was SICK on Monday. Luckily no school that day. It was not fun. I ate not one thing all day, I could barely smell food without feeling sick. YUCK! But, woke up much better today to the 5am phone tree calling school off.

We are under a blizzard warning until midnight tonight. My friend and her three year old foster daughter came over for lunch, nap, play time and now dinner. We had a good time. EXCEPT for the 25 min of Supernanny I did while putting Braeden into time out repeatedly until he actually sat. Usually I give up so to say and place him in his room for time out. I need to really nip some of the attitude in the bud soon, it's getting crazy. So I was consistent. I never knew, and still don't, how some parents on that show last for two hours repeatedly placing their child back in time out. I could barely stand 25 min. Wow. What a day!

Sunday, February 11, 2007


Thanks for the positive comments I've received!!! I appreciate it! It really does look good to me today. :) But, here's the email I got from my dad...

Don't cry, grandpa is looking for a wig for you to wear.
Saturday, February 10, 2007

Hair Butcher

Everyone said cut his hair really short, use the shortest guard on the clippers, cut his hair short. So I did. I don't know. It's so short!!! He looks so big!!! Where's my baby???

Friday, February 09, 2007

Living With a Sleep Walker

Well, we've come into a "I hear feet and am not so scared because I know it's my five year old" phase. Olivia continues to sleep walk, though it's really only happened about 6 times. This last time, three nights ago, she came up to my room where I was huddled under a down comforter, a wool blanket, and a down throw. Did you know the midwest is under frigid conditions right now??? It is COLD!!! And being that my room is the attic, turned bedroom, and has one register, it is FREEZING. So there I was, huddled under the pile of warmth, watching American Idol, when I heard feet coming upstairs. There was Olivia. I asked her what she needed, because this is the way I know if she is sleep walking or not. She does come to me sometimes after a bad dream, or if she needs something. Anyway, she started saying something about "I talked to my mom, and I LIED." I just smiled, said I love you, and gave her a hug. I told her it was time to go to bed and asked if she could make it there ok. She smiled, said yes, and went back to bed. Sometimes she is really out of it and can't make it to bed, but then I just walk her there. I was glad this time she was ok to get there as I didn't want to freeze anymore! :) This weekend it is supposed to warm up - to the mid 20s!!!!! Woo Hoo!
Thursday, February 08, 2007

Life Happens

Well, as I'm now on my third day home with a different sick child every day, I thought I'd take a minute to update on this week. Craziness pretty much sums it up.

Little One turned one on the 30th. He is making huge progress, and is sooooo close to walking!

Saturday we had a combined birthday party for Little One and Braeden, who would be turning three on the 7th. It was a great party! We did the whole cowboy/horse theme since Braeden is ADDICTED to horses!!! (Pretty much anything farm related actually.) We had cute cowboy plates, cups, and napkins, the boys wore cute Gymboree cowboy hats and shirts that have a cowboy and say "Giddy Up", we had a cake that looked like a pasture and field, separated by a fence, with mini Breyer horses, they made "stained glass" horses, got sticker sheets to create a coyboy scene, were given horse finger puppets, had cowboy related candy packs, which were like sweetarts in shapes of hats, boots, spurs, etc, played pin the tail on the donkey, and had take home bags with Breyer magnetic horses. So fun!!! My friend and her 3 year old foster daughter came, as well as my friend who has Braeden's 5 year old brother and 4 year old sister and will be adopting them soon, and our friend who does there day care and her 3 yr old she just finished adopting.

Monday night the CASA worker came to see Little One in his "home" setting and meet us. I was all prepared to talk to her about some issues with the caseworker, visits being during naptime, etc. She got here and I fond out that she is retired from computer work, has never been exposed to foster children or the system in anyway, and Little One is her first case. I kept my complaints to myself, for now anyway. I talked to her about what he was like when he came and what he can do now, about her role, etc. I asked about court, which I knew was in mid Jan but hadn't heard anything about what happened, and you could tell she was very worried about what she should and shouldn't tell me. I didn't want major intimate details, just the general outcome which I knew was ok for me to know. She said it seemed that there wasn't progress being made and she didn't know if he would be able to go home. Little One was pretty shy while she was there and was mostly sitting with me the whole first part. He did start opening up and being more himself after a little bit. She then told me she couldn't believe how animated he was. I thought, animated? this is nothing. She said that when she saw him at the visit he just sat and stared at everyone, no interaction, no smiling, nothing. She had asked the worker who transports him and supervises the visits if he ever smiles and he told her no! I was shocked! It makes me sooooo incredibly sad to think what he must have gone through in his short little life to act like that with his biological mom. He hasn't lived with her since he was four months old, but he's been visiting her every week since. Why is he so timid around her????? That scares me. She said again she couldn't believe how different a child he is in this environment compared to what she saw. I hope that is a great thing for Little One and that come this next court date in July, she is able to share that with the court and that that will make an impression on where this little life should be permanently placed.

Tuesday, I was planning on calling in sick. Long story, but our administration has been kind of jerky about leaving early for appointments lately. The kids at our school get out at 2:35, and teachers are to work until 3:20. Once in a while if we have appts around 3, 3:30, they will allow you to just leave early. Lots of drama lately and Little One had his first Dr appt with a physician, not the health dept, at 3:30. I was planning on calling in sick because I could not change his appt and there has been a lot related to this appt with the cw and I was taking him no matter what. Anyway, called in sick Mon night and Tues morning, out walks Olivia crying that her stomach hurt!!! God, what are you telling me???? She was sick. She stayed home and threw up a couple times. By afternoon she was doing much better and I thought, yay, I'll get back to school tomorrow and preserve my one and only sick day I have left for the year. Went to pick up Little One and Braeden just layed his head on my shoulder. He was hot! I couldn't believe it. I called in again for Wed. Mind you, not only are these my last sick days, but we have internal review at two of our three district schools and are out of subs too!!! Wed was home with Braeden, on his birthday, but luckily he seemed to be doing great and we would all be good to go for Thursday. This morning I went in to get the boys at 6:30, to get them ready to leave by 7. I had been up, showered, eaten breakfast, etc. I walked in the room and thought, what is this smell???? Little One had covered his crib in vomit!!! I could not believe it! He didn't cry or anything during the night, I never heard him getting sick, nothing. I called in right away and got everyone ready to go since I had to write out lesson plans again. They are allowing me to use my only personal day so that I don't have to take a day without pay. Let's pray no one needs a sick day again between now and June 1!!!!!

Tonight I have a sitter coming. I was going to cancel, but need the break. I think Little One is running through what they did, he's been ok since, so unless anything major happens, I'm going to play bingo tonight!!!! :) A friend and I try to go twice a month, but we haven't been since fall. Another friend is also coming tonight. I need to get out of this house! :)
Friday, February 02, 2007


I've been trying since Little One was placed with me to have him evaluated for developmental delays/concerns. He has made HUGE progress since then, but I knew he was still behind in areas. The cw didn't feel he needed to be evaluated any longer, which I never knew until she told me that her supervisor still thought he should be and that she would be referring him. I thought it was a done deal. Oh well, at least he was going to be referred. Last night the intake coordinator for Child and Family Connections, who link families to therapies, scheduled Little One's intake and developmental screening at the same time. That way they could both come and get done what they needed without taking too much time from us since I work during the day. They are so nice. I worked with them in the past for another little girl who was with me. I also had Braeden evaluated when he was young, mostly because I was starting to see some toe walking behavior, which his brother and sister have issues with. He flew by the charts and didn't require any therapy. The PT gave me some ideas for his toe tendency, but she wasn't concerned at the time. He does fine now.

Anyway, last night they came for Little One's eval and intake. He doesn't qualify due to gross motor issues because he has made such progress there. He has made a lot of progress in other areas as well, but does qualify for DT, developmental therapy, due to lack of linking words to objects, speech, etc. They also want him tested by an OT, occupational therapist, but that will be more difficult as we don't have any in the area right now with openings and they have five others who qualify, who are not "state kids." He qualifies for OT due to some fine motor delays. BUT, the DT will have ideas for me to work on things with him to meet those which will be great. They already gave me some ideas last night, so we're off on a good start.

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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