Welcome to our journey through foster parenting and adopting. I am so glad you have visited my blog.

My prayer is that through my experiences on this journey, I can be of help to someone else. I want Jesus Christ to be glorified through this blog because it is only through him that I am able to make this journey.

Here we go, let's start this journey together.

With All My Heart
Paula

Saturday, December 19, 2009

COURT DATE

I found out yesterday that we finally have a court date for our pre TPR hearing. It is January 29, finally it seems like we may be getting closer to the end.  We also have a DNA hearing set for January 13.  I am not sure exactly what this is because we have not had a hearing the other 2 times we did DNA.  I think it may have something to do with the poteintial father being deceased.  If anyone knows anything about a DNA hearing please comment or send me an email.  I am real curious as to what this is.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

RUN! WHILE YOU STILL HAVE YOUR HEART

I was invited to be a part on panel night at our Department of Human Resources GPS class.  I was invited to speak because of the relationship we have built with our birth mom.

As I sat in the class and listened to all the questions the prospective foster parents had and watched as their eyes lit up just talking about the possibility of having foster children in their homes a part of me wanted to say run, while you still have your heart.  Don't get me wrong I was glad to see the people in the class and see them so excited about having children placed in their care, but no one can really prepare you for the reality of foster care.  No one can prepare you for the heartbreak of having to say good bye or having to deal with the stress of wanting so desperately to adopt the child you have in your home but having to deal with all the "policies". There is no way to prepare foster parents for the many different situations they may come in contact with.   I tried to be very open and answer their questions as honest and positive as I could be.  I would never want to discourage anyone from becoming a foster parent.  I just advised them to know their limits and to think with their head and not their heart when called for a placement.

Monday, December 14, 2009

BACK AT HOME

Well I'm posting this entry after the fact but Landon spent the weekend in the hospital.  He got sick last Monday night with a stomach virus and could not get over it. He could not keep a sip of anything down.  We went to the Dr on Thursday and they thought he was at the end of it and that his stomach was just irritated so they told me to start giving him prevacid.  I tried that and of course he could not keep it down.  They then called me in nausea meds which was a liquid and guess what, he could not keep it down either.  We called them back on Friday and they sent us to the Emergency Room where we spent 8 hours getting two bags of IV fluids because he was severely dehydrated.  After the fluids and repeat lab work he still was not better so they admitted him.

He is better now.   We got to come home yesterday morning.  He is finally eating again and up running and playing.  There is nothing scarier than seeing your child just lay lifeless on the coach for a week.  Its great to see him up causing trouble with his brothers again. HAHA

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

NO NEWS

Just a brief update on the DNA status which is no news at all.  I spoke with our SW yesterday and she informed me that they still did not have the DNA order and that once it is received they still had to go through the state forensic lab to get the DNA samples to do the testing.  I am not sure how much longer all of this will take but it seems as though the only people that are in a hurry for this to be done and over is us.  As I have said before though, every day that Little J is with us is another plus for us.  I have to believe that in the end that the judge will feel that it is in Little J's best interest to remain with us even if a family member comes forward.

We did not make the December docket for TPR hearing for BM either.  Hopefully that will happen in January.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

FEARFULLY AND WONDERFULLY MADE

Psalms 139:13-14 says:  "For you created my inmost being: you knit me together in my mother's womb.  I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made."

My friend and I have been talking a lot lately about our children and how different they all are.  Not just our foster children but our biological children also.  We have just been discussing in particular some of the issues we are having or have had with them.  But two of our children in particular that share some of the same struggles and  learning disabilities.

The questions have come up as to how do we know when they really just don't get it or will they be able to take on adult responsibilities as they get older.  How do we trust that we can turn them loose in a car, to go out with friends and make the right choices, will they ever be able to live independently and raise their own families.  These are just a few of the questions we have.

Last night I was reading in my bible, actually I was looking for something else and then the Lord led me to the scripture above and it made me stop and really think.  I felt a peace come over me like no other.  The Lord was telling me I believe that he created all of these children, in his own image and that they are indeed fearfully and wonderfully made.  All the worries we have as parents he already has in the palm of his had.  He created them and he does indeed have a plan for each child.

It is so hard sometimes for me to think about these foster children especially.  So many times I wonder why, why do these sweet babies have to go through some of the awful things they go through, where and who will I wake up with, how do I feel safe, no one to attach to, no one to guide and discipline them, no one to rock them to sleep at night, to one to read them a story or say a bedtime prayer with.  But yet they are fearfully and wonderfully made and God does have a plan for their lives whether it be staying with their biological families and them getting help or going to a Christian foster home that can teach them all about the Lord and how much he loves them no matter what.

I know I have probably rambled but to sum it all up, what I really want each of you to get is that whatever problems you are facing with your children they are fearfully and wonderfully made and that we are just blessed beyond what we deserve to have these children placed in our care from God to help guide them and raise them to be a child after Gods own heart.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

OH, HOW PRETTY

Mom:  Little J leave the Christmas tree alone
Little J:  Oh, pretty




HOME IMPROVEMENT

This was our project this week.  A much need redecorating.  I wish I had made before pictures, but trust me the color was awful.





Wednesday, November 25, 2009

FULL CIRCLE

I have to share this with everyone because when I heard these two sweet words and then the response I knew for sure that we have come full circle.

As you know from previous post my hubby was not on board with adopting Little J in the beginning.  I am not sure the reasons and may never know for sure but what I do know that with God all things are possible and we have indeed come full circle.  He is  100% committed at this point and so is Little J.

Yesterday we were repainting our bedroom so of course we had Little J locked out with his big brothers.  Once we were finished and we opened the door Little J saw me and said "momma" but then he peeked around the door and said "ohhh my Daddy" and Daddy responded hey buddy come see me.  Oh my goodness, I could have cried.  It was one of the sweetest moments I have ever had with them and it is one I never want to forget.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

MUST SEE

My family and I went to see the movie "The Blindside" last night.  I have to say this movie is a must see.  I have to warn you though, you better have your tissue ready.  Take a look at the trailer link below.

http://www.theblindsidemovie.com/#/Videos

Saturday, November 21, 2009

I AM THANKFUL FOR

My Lord and Savior Jesus Christ
My Marvelous Hubby who I love with all my heart and I cannot imagine a life without him
Amazing Children Seth, Patton, Landon and Little J you are all such blessings in my life
My Christian Parents who mean everything to me
My Wonderful Sister and Brother
 My Families Health
My Grandmothers who are both still living
My Grandfathers that have gone on to be with the Lord but were the best grandfathers a girl could ever have
My Father and Mother in law
My Sister in laws and their wonderful families
My Brother in laws and their wonderful families
My best friend in the whole world Kelly and her family
All my other dear friends and family, Amy, Lori, Angela, Melissa, Jana
My Church Family
Little J's Biological Mom T
My home
Our freedom
Our troops who protect us everyday
This amazing journey the Lord has us on right now to love and provide for his children in foster care.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Thursday, November 19, 2009

HOW OPEN SHOULD "OPEN ADOPTION" BE

I ran into Little J's BM this past Saturday at a pizza restaurant and some things became very clear to me. The first thing is this, I am very glad I have the type relationship with her that when I do just happen to dump into her I am not on edge. I was very relaxed and I did not feel as though I needed to do anything except let her see him for a moment. The other thing I noticed was that she seemed as though something was really bothering her. I questioned her about it then but she did not tell me anything.

Little J's BM called me on Saturday night and told me that she had moved out of her Mom's home and was living with a relative. She said she had a lot going on right now and that she was very depressed. I encouraged her to go and get help with her drugs as I always do and I told her I cared about her. She said she was glad and that I was the only one who does. During the conversation she asked to speak with Little J. I put the phone to his ear and she began to talk and then I heard her say "this is your momma". This comment really bothers me because she had begun to let go or so I thought and was referring to herself as T. I know she is his BM and always will be but how do I politely and considerately tell her that she does not need to refer to herself as momma to him? I am his mom now and whether she signs her rights over or they are terminated I am his Mom. I do not want to bring her down anymore than she already is but I do not want to confuse Little J either.

So, I have been thinking about our "open adoption" and how open it should be and how it should be handled and her is what I have decided. I think I have been too open with her. I have always made the effort to take Little J to see her, get her pictures, visit with his sister (oh and by the way she wanted us to come to her birthday party but we are going to politely decline) and pretty much anything she wanted or needed. From now on these things are going to be very limited. I do not want her to expect more than what we can do. I will allow her to visit in a public place with Little J on special occasions (Christmas, birthday etc), I will mail her pictures and will allow her to call every 2 weeks. I do not feel it is safe to be around her right now. I have learned from her Mom that she is being harassed by an ex boyfriend and honestly it is an obsession and I am truly afraid for her life. She has a restraining order against him. Therefore, I am not willing to put my family at risk. Hopefully, one day she will change, be clean from drugs and break free from all the things that she is involved with but until then I have to look out for my family and I will not be responsible for putting them in danger.

I will continue to pray for T and her situation and I would ask that you do the same. She really does need all our prayers.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

DNA/TPR UPDATE

I just wanted to update everyone on where we are right now with the new DNA testing and the TPR. I do not have a lot I can tell you except that we are STILL waiting. One week ago this past Friday my caseworker called to tell me that she had signed the motion for the DNA and that it just had to go before the judge for him to sign. Well, as of today the testing process still has not begun. I also just found out that it may still be another week or so because I am sad to say by caseworkers father passed away this morning.

As far as the TPR is concerned the petition paperwork has been filed for BM. However, this really is not big news because as you already know BM is signing her rights over to us but none of this can be completed until the DNA testing is done.

Okay, back to the DNA testing. I am still struggling with the fact that if this deceased gentleman is Little J's BF, why would his wife have rights to Little J. Little J was conceived out of an affair. Do you really think that if this man was still alive that this woman would want or allow him to come and live with them. Oh and by the way, this man did know about Little J, denied the fact that he could possibly be his (if you know what I mean) and knew that he was in foster care and never came forward to try and get him before his life ended. So does this sound like a family that would want or even should be allowed to have him? I would have to say NO. It just does not make any sense to me. The only thing I can say at this point is that everyday that Little J stays in our home is hopefully a plus for us. I hope that the judge, staff and team all agree that the best place for Little J is in HIS HOME with the ONLY FAMILY he has ever know that LOVES him far more than words can ever say.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

HAPPY HALLOWEEN

Meet Mario aka Landon and Sock Monkey aka Little J. They had a great time trick or treating tonight. Seth went to his first teen party and Patton went to a haunted house with friends. I have to admit I was a little sad that Seth and Patton did not trick or treat with us this year. I am not ready for them to out grow these things.

Monday, October 26, 2009

AFTERNOON AT THE PARK

Yesterday after church Seth, Little and myself met Little J's BM, Aunt and sister for an afternoon at the park. Little J's sister will be 4 next month. She had been asking about Little J and so I suggested we go to the park to let them play. The children had so much fun but Little J's sister could hardly believe it was him. She had not seen him since he was 8 mos.

We really enjoyed getting to watch them play together. I have to admit I was a little nervous about the visit, but once it got started it was great. When the time came to leave Little J's sister started to cry and I picked her up and asked what was wrong and she said "I want to go with you to." This broke my heart but I would have taken her in a minute if I could have. I promised her another visit real soon and hopefully they will allow me to bring her to our home to spend the day very soon.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

POLICY STINKS

Okay everyone, I have said this before numerous times and I will say it again today, POLICY STINKS. I finally got a few answers for the questions I have been asking for weeks. I have been wanting to know if potential father #3 is Little J's biological dad what will be done next? Today I was told that "Policy states, all relatives must be looked at for a potential placement for Little J" This is absolutely sickening to me. Somebody please, please explain to me how looking at family members who have no idea Little J even exist is what is best for him. How is possibly removing him from our home in the best interest of the child? It's NOT but no one at DHR cares about that. They only care about the stinking policy.

Evidently whoever wrote these policies do not have children and do not have a clue what being a family is really all about. It is not just biology that makes you a family.

I hope and pray that this is not the guy either. I was told today that if this is not the guy they will not test anyone else unless someone comes forward after they publish in the paper. Please continue to pray for me, Little J and our entire family.

Friday, October 9, 2009

TEST RESULTS

We received the paternity test results today and there is 0.00% possibility that potential father #2 is the one. We now have 1 more person to test. This is the man that is deceased. This testing maybe a little tricky, but for now we will not worry about that and just be thankful for the news we received today.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow. God does answer prayers. He is answering our prayers daily on this journey.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

PLEA FOR FOSTER HOMES

I have been struggling lately about what the Lord wants me to do with Foster Care. I know he called me to this ministry and yes I did say ministry. I really believe God led me to and gave me a heart for foster children but how do I use that. We have been so blessed with the placement of Little J and who knows we may have another child through foster care one day.

I think right now the main thing I can do is make a plea for more foster homes. I know on our blogs sometimes we are very negative towards the foster system and rightfully so. However, these children have no control of any of the circumstances in their sweet little lives. They just need someone to step in and be the parents that their biological family cannot be for whatever reason. Sometimes this means being a temporary parent and sometimes it is a forever home. Please do not be discouraged by anything negative I may have said about foster care or biological families.

If you are thinking about foster care, please pray about it and follow God. It is an awesome and rewarding experience to know that you are making a difference in the life of a child. Yes you have to put up with a lot of things that you may not agree with but just remember none of that matters. In the end what really matters is that you gave a child more love than they could have ever imagined and hopefully that will help shape their tiny lives into a warrior for Christ.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

HERE WE GO AGAIN

Little J's BM called me last night to tell me she had spoken with the mother of the boy we just did the DNA testing on. The mother told T that if Little J was his that she could not wait to get her hands on him. She told T that they were led to believe he was someone else's child and that they wanted him. Let me add though that they thought he may be someone else's child but no DNA had been done so why did they not come forward and say that this was a possibility. T is friends with this lady and they have known about Little J and this whole situation the entire time.

I do not know how to feel about this right now. I am trying not to get myself worked up over this because we do not even know if he is the Dad but it is hard. My hubby said don't worry Little J is not going anywhere. I wish I was that confident but we have a crazy system.

I know that some of you feel that being with the biological family is what is best no matter what but I have to disagree. I cannot believe that taking a baby from the only family he has ever known and placing him in strangers home (and they are strangers) is best. I am not saying that this is what will happen but it could and it stinks. I feel like that every situation should be evaluated and just because its best for one case does not mean it is best for every case. In our case Little J has been with us 13 1/2 mos and we are his family biology or not.

Ok, sorry I know it sounds like I am sending Little J away and it has not happened but I cannot help but worry. I love this little guy so much and I do not want to even think about the possibility of him not always being here.

Keep praying, prayers have been answered so far and I know this to will work out too.

Monday, September 28, 2009

ACCEPTANCE

Chyne and I just purchased a new washer, dryer and stove and we gave our old ones to Little J's BM. Yesterday, we took the appliances to their home.

When we got to Little J's BM house they invited us in to visit. We went in and sat down in their living room and watched Little J entertain everyone. We had a very good visit with them. It was nice to just sit and visit in their home without DHR having to supervise, without having to leave Little J screaming because he doesn't want to stay, to see Little J's BM just enjoy playing with him without having to try to make him happy, and most of all to see that Little J's BM is accepting her new role.

While we were there she spoke to Little J by referring to herself by her name. She would say "come see T." It was sad in the fact that I cannot imagine being her but it was good because of her acceptance. It made everything less stressful and it truly let me know that she is comfortable with us and confident in the decision she has made to sign over her rights. She is a good person and does want what is best.

Friday, September 25, 2009

DNA TESTING DONE

Potiential father #2 went for his DNA testing yesterday. We should hear something in about 2 weeks. I really hope it is sooner than that though because all this waiting will make you crazy (if you are not already).

I do want to ask any of my readers if they know anything about the Alabama State Law which has to do with the Putative Father Registry. To my knowledge in Alabama if someone thinks they could possibly be the father of an infant they must register their name with this registry within 30 days of the childs birth in order to seek custody. If this is not done then it is giving consent for adoption and if a child is placed for adoption then they have no more rights.

If this be the case then I do not understand why DHR does not enforce this Law. What I would like to know is, is there a clause that has to do with DHR and custody that prevents this from being used? There are so many children in foster care that are ready to be adopted but they are waiting on DNA testing. This law could change alot of childrens lives if it can be used in a DHR situation. Please let me know if you have any information about this. Oh, and by the way there are other states that have the same law so you do not have to be just in Alabama to answer my question.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

FAMILY UPDATE

I know my posting has been sort of few and far between lately, but we have been so busy I never have the time to actually post.

Everyone is doing great here.

Hubby celebrated his 40th birthday August 31 and I pulled off a big surprise party for him. It was soooo much fun. Hubby is also getting ready for hunting season.

Seth is busy with church activities and also getting geared up for basketball season which is just around the corner.

Patton stays very busy with football practice, baseball hitting lessons, and texting his girlfriend.

Landon is our little head hunter on his football team. He has at least 10 tackles a game and causes 2-3 fumbles per game. Way to go Landon.

Little J is just busy getting into everything and climbing on whatever he can get a knee on. We also have had a major accomplishment, he is sleeping through the night in his OWN bed. If he does wake he just cries himself back to sleep. Yes, finally.

As for me you can tell I am just busy being mom and the taxi service.

Little J's paternity testing is scheduled for September 25th. This is for the second possible father. If this is not the one we have one more to test. We have not heard from Little J's BM in almost 4 weeks. I hope she is okay. I still worry about her a lot.

I guess that is about all I have to report for now. I will update you with more information as it becomes available.

Monday, September 7, 2009

FRIENDSHIP, ONE OF GOD'S GREATEST BLESSINGS

Friendship, I think this is something that sometimes we take for granted and miss out on one of God's greatest blessings. I want to share with you about my blessing.

I just do not really know where to begin to tell you how much my friend means to me. I have only know her for a little over a year but I feel like we have been friends a lifetime. We met in our GPS class (oh and by the way I do believe this was all in God's plan). I will never forget talking to her for the first time and just being in awe of her. She already had 5 children of her own and here she was with a burden for adoption ready to add another child. To be honest I really thought she was crazy haha. Just kidding. Anyway we just hit it off from the beginning. Since our GPS class has ended our friendship has grown. We talk EVERYDAY usually a lot more than once. I really do not know what I would do without her. I cannot imagine being on this journey without her.

God has used our friendship in so many ways I cannot even begin to explain all that has happened but the one thing I will always be indebted to her for is that she let me know about Little J. She was called to foster Little J first but after prayer and consideration she really felt like that for her family taking on a child with a severe heart condition was not what was best. She called me and told me she had turned the placement down and I immediately called to inquire about him. I do believe this was all in God's plan. She now has 3 foster children of her own and we both are real close to adoption.

As we come to maybe the end of this chapter of our life we are a little sad. We do have a heart for foster children but we cannot save all of them. It is our prayer that through our love for the Lord, our friendship, our families and our foster care experience we can recruit and be an advocate for these children. We are in prayer that God will use us to reach people for these children. We do not know if it is together or on different journey's but together as friends we do want to make a difference.

Okay I have left you in suspense long enough. Although you may have already figured out who my very best friend in the whole worlds is, It's Kelly from the blog The Missing Piece.

Kelly, thank you for your friendship I could not have done this without you and would have never wanted to do it without you. I can't wait to see what the Lord has in store for us both. Hold on tight girl because I know he has BIG plans for us.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

QUESTIONS ABOUT OPEN ADOPTION

I would like to take a minute to ask a few questions about open adoption. My husband and I are considering having a somewhat open adoption with Little J's BM. I just need to know how some of you handle the arrangements of open adoption. I do not want to commit myself to too much but I really don't know what to do.
  1. Do you setup guidelines before the adoption is final?
  2. Do you allow visits at your home or in a community setting.
  3. Do you specify who can visit?
  4. Does open adoption sometimes mean no actual physical contact just updates through pictures.
  5. How do you go about explaining the situation to your child?
  6. How do you live in the same community and not have an open adoption?

We really do not know how to handle all of this. Little J's BM has agreed to waive parental rights but does want to continue a relationship. Our stipulation was she has to be clean and it would always be on our terms but how do we make the right decisions about the terms? Any input you can give would really help.

Friday, August 28, 2009

COURT UPDATE

I just wanted to give everyone a court update. All in all I think things really went well today. As soon as I got the the courthouse Little J's BM met me and told me that she had talked with her attorney and let her know of her intent to waive her parental rights. She told me she wanted the judge to know this also.

When we got in the court room our SW testified and made the recommendation of TPR and then BM attorney shared with the judge about BM's decision. The judge then reinforced the fact that paternity needed to be established and then TPR would be granted.

I am so happy and relieved. I am so very proud of Little J's BM. She was really brave today and stood by her word. She expressed to me that this was not about her anymore it was about Little J and what was best for him, but what touched me the most today was when she said to me "I know you and Chyne love Little J and he loves yall but I have to think about your boys also. I know they love him very much and Little J loves them and I know it would hurt your boys to much for him to leave.:" This statement meant a lot to me. It let me know that she does love her son but also that she is thinking about my children and how much I love them also.

I so much want to help her. I want to be her support. Not her enabler but her support. Whether it be tough love, a shoulder to cry on. but most of all I hope she sees Jesus through me. I know most of you probably follow Hope who writes in The Monster Wrangler and if you don't please go and read her "sermon". We must love all people and especially these Birth Moms. They are most always a product of what they were raised in and somewhere the cycle must end and the only way it will end is through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and we must be the messenger. We MUST show Christ love even though sometimes we don't understand or don't want to understand. These parents need us not only to care for and love their children but to truly care about them. I do care about Little J's BM and want to be that person for her.

COURT TODAY

Court is at 9:45 this morning. Please keep us in your prayers, especially the judge. I will update as soon as I know something.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

THE TRUE LOVE OF A BIOLOGICAL MOTHER

I received a call last night from Little J's BM and the person that was on the other end of that phone was a different person than what I am used to talking to. This person was the person who truly wants whats best for her son. Little J's BM called to tell me that she is ready to sign over her rights to us. I was shocked and really didn't know what to say to her other than thank you and to tell her that Little J will always know that she loved him.

I have thought about this alot since last night and I have to say that through all of the drug abuse and all the events leading up to this point she really does love him. I know that she has decided to do this with only a week before termination but I do know that several months ago she talked about signing over her rights. I think this is something she has been thinking about for a long time.

I have a new found respect for Little J's BM. She told me that she knows that right now she could not possibly take care of him and that even if she was well that she could not provide and care for him the way that we can. She said she knows that we truly love him and he loves us and she just wanted what was best for him. She did request that she be allowed to see him and we did agree that this would be an open adoption under the condition that she be drug free and she will only see him when she is drug free.

This is a true picture of true love of a biological Mom. She is finally putting her sons well being and future before herself. She does love him, I have known that all along but she has definitely proven that now.

I care about Little J's BM and I want her to get better. I would love for her to be well and be able to spend time with Little J. I think that one day she will. We will just keep praying for her because God is at work in this situation and he is revealing that to me everyday.

Thank you God for hearing us when we pray and answering our prayers. You are an awesome God!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

WHAT NEXT

I need to vent so here it goes. I would like to say in advance that I am sorry that sometimes I seem so negative about foster care.

I received a call today from our SW who wanted to let me know that her supervisor has told her that she MUST do DNA on anyone that Little J's mom has mentioned as a potential father. This makes me so angry because the first person that they are going to have to try and test is deceased and the other is 18 yrs old and has known about Little J since he was born. This guy surely could do the math and figure out that if they were together then that he might be the father. It seems pretty obvious to me that even if he is the father he doesn't care. So why, why do we have to try and force these people to be parents.

I know that DHR says that they are trying to do whats best for the children, but are they really? I just don't understand how they could think that trying to test everyone she names to see if they are the father and then possibly finding him and moving Little J would be best.

I am trying so hard not to worry and be positive but it is hard. I just want them to do these test as quickly as possible so we can move on. I just have to wonder, what next?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

NO VISIT TOMORROW

In our last ISP the SW made it clear to Little J's BM and everyone in the room that she was to make phone calls twice a week and call on Tuesdays to confirm our visit for Wednesday since she has begun to not show. It was very clear to her that she must call or there would be NO visit.

SW called today and said NO conformation NO VISIT tomorrow. SW said if she calls in the morning or shows up that it is too late. She has to take responsibility.

This is so sad to me that she does not care enough to even call or want to visit. It is ok with me to not have to take him but it is still sad. I really believe she has accepted the fact that it is over and he is NEVER coming back to her.

Friday, August 7, 2009

OFF TO KINDERGARTEN

Today was Landon's first day of kindergarten. I cannot believe it has come the time for me to have to leave him at school. He was so excited about school. He did much better than I did with saying good bye. As a matter of fact I had to ask him to please come give me a hug and kiss bye because we was already at his table ready to go. I wanted to share our conversation from this morning with you. It was funny and sweet.

Mom: Landon momma is so sad that you are going to school today.
Landon: Well momma, you know you could just home school me.
Mom: Please don't tempt me because I just might think about it.

Here are a few pictures: Landon before leaving for school, Landon and Ms Joy, Little J.






















Wednesday, August 5, 2009

MOVING FORWARD! MAYBE

Ok, as you all know our ISP meeting was today. Our SW let Little J's BM know that they are moving forward with TPR or at least in paper work I guess. Let me explain. We go into the meeting and as I have said the SW let her know that they are moving to TPR and changing the plan to adoption with current foster placement (and by the way when asked by the SW if we had talked about adoption and were we committed hubby said YES). Now just as I expected BM is desperate to go to rehab. She asked several times if she was in rehab would this stop the judge from granting TPR. Little J's attorney told her that they want her to get help but that in her opinion it was too late for her to regain custody. BM also tested positive again today.

Ok, so after all this BM then proceeds to tell us that she may have an aunt that will take Little J. I am not too awful worried about this though because whoever this aunt is did not take her sisters kids. But, she then named someone else that could possibly be the dad. So you know what that means, another paternity test. This is ridiculous. So many different men she has no clue who his dad is but if this guy is his dad then here we go again with visits, and whatever else he needs.

Does this ever end? Moving forward almost seems as though we took 2 steps backwards. This is so crazy and frustrating. Little J and our family need closure with this. We are ready to be a normal family again.

The GAL (attorney for Little J) said that she will ask the judge to try and push this case on forward so hopefully that will work. Please pray for us. We just want this to be over.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

COMMITMENTS

Last Friday my SW came for our monthly home visit and we had a really good visit. We were able to talk about what the future is looking like for Little J. The SW told me that on August 5th we will be having an ISP meeting and she will be changing the permanency goal for Little J from reunification with parent to adoption with current foster placement. Wow, that is us!!

This is something that I have been waiting to hear for many months but my hubby is still so scared. He is so scared to make commitments sometimes for fear that things may fail. I know with out a doubt that he loves Little J. I wish you could see him with him. He is great with him and Little J adores him.

I understand some of his fears and concerns but that does not change the fact that I feel Little J is ours and is meant to stay here. I think adoption through foster care is a scary thing. Number one we live within 25 miles of his BM which is not bad its just awkward because she now his bad feelings toward us because "he is still MY son." Number two these children all come with problems whether it be health issues or emotional issues. We got Little J at a great age (6 months), so the emotional issues are not there but of course there is the health issue that will never change. Number three, is drug addiction more hereditary or environment. Little J's BM family ALL have drug issues. Will it be the same for him is it just born in someone or can our love, support, morals and values be enough to prevent this from happening. These are just a few of the things I think about but in the end I am willing to risk all my worries and concerns to have a chance to Love and Mother this baby forever.

I have to believe in my heart that God would not have allowed this beautiful baby to live in our hearts and home for a year and then us have to say no to adoption. God is good and I know the details are already worked out they have just not been revealed to us yet. I am trying hard to be patient but I am not a very patient person. Hummm, maybe this is the lesson God is trying to teach me, patience and COMPLETE TRUST in him. God I do trust you.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

NO SHOW

BM was a no show for the visit today. She has completely quit making phone calls, will not come to door for SW visit and did not come for a visit with Little J today. I wonder if she has accepted the fact that it is pretty much over for her as far as getting her children back. She knows that the permanency hearing is next month and SW told her last week it did not look good for her.

Monday, July 20, 2009

HAPPY 13TH BIRTHDAY PATTON

July 16th was Patton's 13th birthday. Oh my goodness I now have 2 teenagers in the house. Anyway Patton was at the beach with a friend and his Dad, myself, Seth, Landon and Little J showed up there and surprised him. He left last Sunday and had no idea we were coming. It was so much fun. I love surprises.

Happy belated birthday Patton I love you.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

ONE MORE MONTH

As I write this post I am filled with so many emotions. I am scared, nervous, excited, happy, sad, filled with joy, thankful, the list can go on and on. We are just one month away from our permanency hearing and it seems like an eternity from now.

As I look at the case and everything that was laid before Little J's Mom to complete she has done nothing and I do not see how the judge can do anything any different but to terminate her rights but that may or may not happen. I am so happy that we may finally be able to be a family in every since of the word but I am sad for Little J's mom because she just cannot seem to find a way to beat her problems. My heart breaks for her. No matter how mad she makes me she is a human being that deserves love and support and she has no one to give her that. I just hope through this process she has seen that I have tried to be an example of Christ's love and that one day she will come to understand that Christ is truly the only one she needs and the only one who can help pull her out of this pit she is in.

Please just keep our family and Little J's Mom in your prayers. This will be a long month of waiting and hoping. We love Little J so much and cannot wait to call him ours for real. He is a special little boy sent to us from God and for that we are very thankful.

Friday, July 10, 2009

WORLD CHANGERS

My oldest son Seth has been gone this week with his church youth group to World Changers. This is a mission project which has around 400 people participating in the area he is in. They have projects they work on for the less fortunate. Seth's group has been painting a porch and foundation this week. They have also had the opportunity to walk through the neighborhoods to share the gospel with those they come in contact with.

I am so proud of Seth for participating with this group. Seth has Cerebral Palsy and it would have been so easy for him just to say I can't and not try but he doesn't do that. His leader said he has fallen alot this week because the ground is so unlevel but he just gets right back up and keeps going. He received an award this week for being the most overcoming. Way to go Seth. God will bless you for the work you have done this week.

I love you very much Seth and I am so proud of you.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

WHAT IS PROGRESS

What is progress, now let me see!!

NO JOB

NO SUITABLE HOUSING

STILL ACTIVELY USING DRUGS

NO REHAB

NO COMMUNITY SERVICE FOR HER PROBATION

LOOKING AT POSSIBLE JAIL TIME

BUT, WE NOW ARE BRINGING A DIAPER BAG TO THE VISIT.

I am not joking guys, the caseworker supervisor told me that she heard that Little J's mom is beginning to make progress. Are you kidding me? I almost had to laugh at her but it made me too mad to laugh.

Monday, June 29, 2009

YOU CANNOT MAKE HER LOVE HIM

We have been dealing with several things with Little J and his BM lately. She is in a position now where she knows that it is getting close to her losing her children forever and she is now really making up many more lies and excuses. She still is not in treatment (but according to her this is the caseworkers fault) still no job, still no adequate housing, and still ACTIVELY using drugs.

I just get really frustrated with all of this crap. You cannot make BM love her children. No matter how hard you try it will not happen. Let me give you an example of how ridiculous this thing is. The BM never calls me to check on Little J. The only contact she has with him is once per week for a visit. BM has been lying to caseworker and telling her she calls and I never answer so caseworker decides that we need set days and times that BM must call. Caseworker set this up for Mondays and Saturdays from 2-5. This past Saturday was the first day this was to start. Well, you guessed it no phone call even after BM sat and told caseworker she would call. Don't get me wrong. I do not care if I ever talk to her but I don't like someone lying about me. I just do not understand how once per week is enough for BM but if this is all she wants please quit trying to force her to do more. If she doesn't care I don't either. We love Little J more than she can ever imagine and I just pray we get to give him that love forever.

Friday, June 26, 2009

STILL HERE

I am sure many of you think I have just forgotten to blog lately but the truth is we are so busy and things are going so well right now we have just been a little quite.

Patton begins his all star tournament tonight so for the next 2 weeks we will be very busy. Seth is just traveling from one set of grandparents to the next this summer. He really enjoys spending time with them and they enjoy it also. Landon and Jacob are just trying to keep up. They are having lots of fun swimming and just normal summer things.

Oh and one more thing, Whitney please hurry home Patton misses you so much.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

GOD AT WORK

Right before my very eyes I can now begin to really see God at work in our adoption journey. I know he has been with us all along but I believe he is beginning to reveal his plan. As I posted in an earlier post, DHR has asked us to begin to try and decided if we will be able to adopt Little J. As I have also posted before my hubby still has had a lot of doubts, but today he got really frustrated with DHR and said to me "you can get mad at me if you want but I am going to call DHR and tell them they need to put Little J back with his mom or leave him with us forever but something needs to be done". I almost ran into the police car beside me ( not really but I was shocked). I could not believe those words just came out of his mouth. I don't think he could either haha.

I post this entry not to say that it is a done deal and Little J will be ours, although I hope and pray he will be, but I want everyone who reads this blog to know that God is in control of every situation and every thing is in his perfect timing. We just have to trust that and I must admit that is very hard for me sometimes because I want answers and I want them immediately.

To all of you who have been praying for us, thank you and please, please keep those prayers going up. We still need all of your prayers as we face the next few months that lies ahead of us. There are still many things that can happen and nothing is certain about Little J's future until the judge grants the TPR request.

Friday, June 12, 2009

WHAT IS GOING ON

Little J had a 3 hour visit yesterday (only because the case aide asked the BM if she would like that since she missed last week due to us being on vacation) she could have cared less about a longer visit. I had almost been phyisically sick all morning about this visit because Little J cries when I leave him with her. I get to the visit, start through the door and the case aide snatches Little J out of my arms, shoves him into BM moms arms and rudely states " I will take him here" and tries to close the door on me. Needless to say I was very upset because Little J was just waking up and had no idea where he was and they asked me no questions about him. I very sturnly asked the case aide what is going on. She advised me that she was told to take him from me as soon as I got there. I spoke to my SW about this and she did tell case aide to try to take him in the lobby hoping maybe this would help with the crying. Now, why would he not cry with the case aide?

I know this probably seems like I am being hard to get along with but I am tired of Little J and my family being jerked around. They have placed this child in my care and it is my job to protect him as long as he lives with me. I would NEVER allow someone to do my own children that way and I can promise you this they will NEVER do Little J that way again. It was almost as if I was the BM who had done something wrong and that makes me very angry. When does the children in foster care ever have any rights? When are their feelings ever considered? The answer is NEVER. The only thing that DHR is concerned with is the BP and how much they can help them. BM has been working with DHR since the day Little J was born. Come on guys after 16 mos isn't it obvious she is NOT going to change. It is time to stop believing all her lies and start thinking about Little J but that will not happen anytime soon.

Monday, June 8, 2009

WE ARE BACK

Well, we are back from our vacation, back to reality. We had a wonderful week on vacation. I loved it. We actually felt like a "normal" family. No visit, no phone calls from BM (although we very rarely have those calls), no DHR, no job, just our family and it felt great. But, we are back and now we have to start all over with visits and everything else that DHR expects of us.

Anyway back to the wonderful vacation. My children had a great time and Little J liked the beach a little more each day. The beach is the life to have. Lay on the beach all day and go out to eat and night.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

MUCH NEEDED VACATION

My family and I along with 3 other families are leaving for the beach in the morning. I hope everyone has a good week and I will post some pictures when we return.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

HAPPY BIRTHDAY LANDON

Happy 6th birthday Landon!!! We love you:)

MEET MARLEY, OUR NEW ADDITION TO THE FAMILY

Marley is Landons birthday present from his Dad.



















Saturday, May 23, 2009

ONCE UPON A TIME.....

Once upon a time, our family set out on an adventure to bring a daughter/sister into our family. We believed that this was exactly how God intend to complete our family and then something amazing happened.

We were called to foster this precious baby boy that has been a member of our family in every way for 10 wonderful months. This baby has truly changed our lives forever. We have learned that sometimes our plans are not always Gods plans. We have learned that we can love someone else's child as though they were our own. We have learned that we can love no matter what the race may be or what disability they may have. We have learned how truly wonderful our family support has been. Oh, the things that God has taught us through this process is amazing.

But, now we are being faced with making a decision that may possibly never happen. We are faced with needing to decide if we can adopt Little J should he become available for adoption and our family is torn. We do love Little J with all our hearts but we must decide if we can adopt him. Part of my family still has their hearts set on a little girl and we know that adopting one child is all we can do. I know some of you maybe be thinking that we are looking at this as a pick and choose kind of situation and that is not it. We want what is best for everyone involved. However, from the beginning of this whole process our family made the decision to do this together and we also agreed that we would all be in agreement on our decisions because at this point our family has to be considered first.

There has been no decision made yet and we still have sometime to pray about this and wait for God's plan to be revealed to us. I have begun to sense his will beginning to be revealed to us and if what is unfolding before me is truly God's plan I do know that all the details will be worked out and I cannot wait to share this with you. I just do not want to go into any details at this point until we are absolutely sure. Keep on praying for us please.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

SURPRISE, SURPRISE!!!

Well, I must admit, I turned 40 on May 14. I really thought I had it made, but boy was I wrong. My family and friends surprised me Saturday night with a party to help celebrate. I was definitely surprised. I had NO idea they had this planned. Way to go guys! You got me. Just remember though, some of you still have to turn 40.

Thank you so much for the party and gifts. I really did enjoy being with all of you.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

HOW?

How can such a tiny little green eyed boy steal so much of your heart?

How can that sweet little cry be something we will long for when he is gone?

How can we forget what he will be possibly going home to?

How can DHR ask us to bring these children into our homes, love them like our own, oh and by all means though don't get attached?

How can we love someone so much and then say goodbye?

How can I continue to bring children into my home, ask my children to love them and then say ok kids its time to say goodbye?

How can I look into those sweet little eyes everyday and not wonder how many more days we have or could this be the last?

How can I not hold him just a little longer each night because I don't know how much longer we have?

How can I not dream of us being his Mom and Dad forever?

How can my children not have those same feelings of being his brother forever?

How can having your children taken away not be enough motivation to do something about it?

How can a possible prison sentence be the best motivation?

How can a little community service of keeping a section of the highway clean and rehab be punishment enough for a charge of chemical endangerment to a child, having your baby born addicted and a heart condition that cannot be reversed that he has to live with the rest of his life?

How can THEY DO US THIS WAY?

I guess you can tell I am very upset as is my whole family. The ISP meeting today was awful. We are now looking for a rehab to take Mom and Little J and his sister. Do you want to know the real kicker? The real motivation behind going to rehab now. It is not because of the children and whats best for them, it is to stay out of prison. You heard me right a little community service and rehab (slap on the wrist) and Little J has a heart condition which may require a transplant that he has to deal with the rest of his life.

My children are devastated and do not understand and I don't know how to explain what I do not understand. This attempt at rehab may fail to. As always I will say we will love him for as long as we have and trust that Gods will be made cleared to us and that as he promises, he will be right there with us every step of the way.

Friday, May 8, 2009

BECAUSE "I'M YOUR MOTHER"

I just talked with Little J's mother today which was a most frustrating conversation. I need to catch you up to date a little bit. Since our last ISP meeting she has continued using drugs and has received no help, but of course this is everyone else fault. Yeah right. Anyway the last 2 weeks that Little J has had a visit with her he has cried for me. This past Tuesday it was so bad that 45 minutes into the visit she called me to come get him because she could not get him to stop crying. I went back to get him and he was immediately happy. This really upset Little J's mom but I cannot apologize for that because this is HER fault.

She called me last night and left a message that she really needed to talk to me. Well, me in my not right mind (haha) thought that this is it, she is finally ready to sign over her rights. Boy was I wrong. She again is back to "I want my kids back and I want help". I do not believe her and I told her that.

She continued with the conversation and began talking about what was best for Little J and this is what really upsets me. She said "What are we going to tell Little J when I get him back because he loves you so much"? My response was I don't know you tell me. She said "we will just say you are going home because I'M YOUR MOTHER". Ok I have a real problem with this answer because blood is not all that makes you a mother.

Can someone please explain to me why our courts, social workers, lawyers and anyone else involved thinks that "because i'm your Mother" is a good reason to destroy a childs life. Little J does not know her as his mother. He will not understand why he is having to leave the only Dad, Mom, brothers, grandparents, aunts and uncles he has ever known and why should he be expected to understand. These parents think that just because they have decided after 6 months, 9 months or even longer they are ready to get help their children are supposed to understand. So we help parents get well and damage children. Does not make alot of sense to me but this is what will happen and I have NO CONTROL of the outcome.

All I can do now I guess is change nothing. I will continue loving Little J as my own and I will keep reminding myself that this is all in Gods hands (oh and Kelly I will need your help with this so just keep reminding me often that all Little J needs right now is our unconditional love and whatever happens is Gods Plan).

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

THE GIFT


Here it is Kelly. He did good, didn't he?

TWENTY YEARS

Hubby and I have married 20 years today. Wow!! I love you Chyne, thanks for 20 great years and I look forward to 20 more.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

MY LITTLE GRADUATE

Today was Landon's preschool graduation. I cannot believe my baby is going to kindergarten. I wanted to share a few pictures with you:





MY BEST BUDDY!!!







MRS MARCIA-MY SPECIAL TEACHER























Wednesday, April 29, 2009

ADVICE NEEDED

My oldest son Seth has cerebral palsy. Seth is one of the sweetest, funniest kids you will meet but sometimes he and I really have our moments. He is not confined to a wheelchair nor does he use any kind of walking aids. He does have difficulty walking but he can walk and for that I am very thankful. Seth, I feel has become very dependent on others. What I mean by very dependent is that he really wants someone to do everything for him, from making him a sandwich to helping with homework to you name it he wants help. He does not even want to try to do anything for himself. He says I can't and that drives me crazy because I know he can. I just want to find some way to motivate him and find something that he can be successful at and feel good about. If anyone reading my blog deals with the same issues with your child whether it be cerebral palsy or any other handicap, please let me know if you have any good motivation tools. I would love some new ideas.

Friday, April 24, 2009

COURT

Today is court for Little J. We were a little disappointed earlier this week because we had been told that today was the permanency hearing and we had hopes of knowing if Little J would officially become ours. However, we found out that this is just a judicial hearing and from what I understand this is the hearing that is just a "paper hearing" where all the facts of the case is presented to the judge for review and that the permanency hearing will follow in August which is the point where Little J has been in custody for 12 mos. If anyone reading this blog knows anything different about this type of hearing or if I am just completely wrong please let me know.

Anyway just please continue to pray for our family and that we just always remember whatever happens is God's perfect plan.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

RESULTS ARE IN

Well, paternity results are in and the guy they tested is NOT Little J's father. I don't know whether to be happy or sad because they still have to pursue other possibilities but for now I guess I am a little happy. They may not ever find out who Little J's father really is and that to me though is very sad.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

UNCONDITIONAL LOVE

I have been thinking a lot lately about unconditional love and with that I just realized that I have not taken the opportunity to express to my amazing extended family how grateful I am for their unconditional love for Little J and our family as we continue this journey with the Lord and Little J. We brought Little J into our home and from day one my family has treated him just like he was my biological child. Their are no words to express how much this means to me. I know that for some people bringing a foster child into your family, let alone a child of a different race is sometimes very difficult but I can truly say I never had any doubts or worries of how Little J would be loved or accepted.
Many of my family members read this blog so to you THANK YOU and WE LOVE YOU VERY MUCH.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

CARDIOLOGY VISIT

Little J had his visit with the Cardiologist today and we got some very good news. The Dr told us that Little J looked great and his heart looked great. I asked the Dr if he thought that his medicines were doing what they should or if he still thought we may possibly need a transplant and he stated that he was very optimistic about Little J's future. He did not see anything that concerns him now and he sees no reason to even talk about a transplant at this point. As long as things go good on meds no transplant. Praise God, keep on praying for him.

Monday, April 6, 2009

IT'S DONE

The DNA testing is done. I have so many emotions about this. I hope he is not Little J's Dad, but is this fair to Little J? I know one day he will want to know who his dad is but it would make things so much simpler for the process if he is not. What if he is his Dad? Will he do what he has to in order to get his son back? Is this the best thing for Little J? I know that in most cases being reunited with your biological parents is supposed to be whats best, but in this case I am not sure because we are the only family Little J really knows. What will it do to Little J emotionally if he has to leave his "family" when he knows we love him and we provide him with whatever he needs. What if a biological family member steps up and wants Little J? I cannot even bear the thought of losing him. I am so scared of what the outcome maybe, but yet I do have a since of peace in knowing that everything that happens is for a reason and God and God alone is the only one who has the master plan for our lives and that we just have to trust that whatever the outcome maybe it is GODS PERFECT PLAN.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

HERE'S YOUR PICTURES WHITNEY

I had a request for some pictures of my son Patton. It is a little joke between my friend Kelly (most of you follow her blog) and myself that we have prearranged the marriage of her daughter Whitney and my son Patton. We laugh about it but if really would be nice if we could do that because they are both great kids.





LOOK WHAT A GREAT DAD HE WILL BE!


BACKYARD SKIM BOARDING

Oh what fun, Landon put on a show for us today in our yard. It rained so much here that we had water standing in our yard. Landon decided that he would skim board for a while. He stayed on the ground more than he stayed up but he had lots of fun.

ON YOUR MARK, GET SET, WIPE OUT!!!
























Monday, March 30, 2009

HAPPY BIRTHDAY SETH

Well today is the day, my baby is 16 and I cannot believe it. I Love You so much Seth and I hope you have had a wonderful day. Sorry you had to spend alot of it at the ball field but we will have a big fat juicy steak Wednesday night so you get to celebrate a little longer.


Saturday, March 28, 2009

SWEET LITTLE STEPS

Nothing is more precious than those first sweet little steps. Little J started walking this week by himself (well with a little help from his brothers and some bribery). He has been cruising around furniture for about 4 or 5 months. Here are a few pictures for you to see. I DON"T WANT TO!!!
HERE'S THE BALL

OH, ALRIGHT



IF I MUST


LOOK, HERE I COME
Oh, I almost forgot, another achievement this week was that Little J began sleeping through the night. Yes i know he is 13 mos and just now started sleeping through the night. I really do not know what changed but it is great. I do love those sweet times of just me and him no tv, no phone, no one else but us but I really did need some rest. I feel like a new women. Its amazing how 7 hours of uninterrupted sleep makes you feel.



Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Paternity Testing

Little J had a visit with his Mom today. We had not heard from her since last week at the ISP where she told me she was going to start calling and checking on him. Yeah right, never heard a word from her. I just do not understand how you can allow someone else to raise your children and not do everything possible to try and get them back. What is wrong with these parents?

Our caseworker informed us today that the paternity testing for Little J will be April 6th. Please keep that date in your prayers we really need to establish paternity so that we can move on with this case.

Patton and Landon are in full swing with baseball. Landon has moved to pitching machine and is trying to see if he can out do Patton with his hitting. This should be a interesting season.

Seth has his 16th birthday coming up Monday I cannot believe my baby will be sixteen. My Dad gave him his old truck and Seth and his dad have been working on it to get it up and running. Seth is more excited about this truck than a brand new one. Thanks Dad you saved us a lot of money.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

ROLLER COASTER RIDE

Wow, what a week. Monday my caseworker came to my house for her monthly home visit. While she was here she informed me that she and her supervisor had reviewed Little J's case and due to the fact that no effort had been made on the moms part that they were going to inform her Wednesday at the ISP that all services were being withdrawn and that they were pursuing TPR (termination of parental rights). After she left I was a bundle of nerves. I would love for Little J to forever be a part of our family but my hubby is still not sure. He loves Little J very much but because of Little J's heart condition (don't know if I have touched on this or not) but he has an enlarged heart and may eventually need a heart transplant he is very worried about the future for him and our family. We already have one child that has Cerebral Palsy and my Hubby is just very concerned. I guess being a man he has to try and think with his head and not just his heart unlike me. Anyway I prayed alot about this up to this point but even more since Monday.

We went to the meeting on Wednesday and nothing was like what I was told. Everything had changed and we are now back to trying to get Mom into another rehab. I could not believe what I was hearing. I was prepared for the TPR and now it seems we are back to where we started. Crazy, yeah that's what I thought also.

The only thing that I did take from the meeting was that the caseworker told Little J's mom we just wanted what was best for Little J and mom said "me too and I am trying to decide if that is me or Paula". It sounds to me like she is considering possibly signing over her rights to us.

As frustrating as this was I do believe that everything happens for a reason and only in Gods perfect timing. Maybe just maybe God allowed things to change to give me and my hubby a little more time because I do feel in time he will put aside his fears and we will adopt Little J.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

GOD IN MY HEART

My children and I had the privilege of going to church last night to see Mike Hagen and the Strength Team. These guys are awesome. They preform many acts of strength like, rolling up frying pans, making a horseshoe into a heart, driving nails with bare hand just to mention a few but the greatest thing however is their LOVE for GOD.

They bring a message along with their performance. At the end of the performance they offer a time to become saved and they help lead people in a prayer to receive Jesus Christ. I am a sign language interpreter and so I was involved with signing last night. After the prayer was given Mike told everyone that he was going to count to three and then he wanted everyone who asked Jesus into their heart to please come forward. In just a moment a felt a tap on my shoulder and it was my 5 year old son Landon and he said momma I need to go up there because I prayed and asked God in my heart. It was an awesome experience and now all of my older children are saved.

I am not real sure if at 5 soon to be 6 if children really understand all about salvation but Landon has always been raised in church and he is very mature for his age. Our pastor me, Chyne and Landon are going to sit down and discuss this decision a little more but we are going to support him and encourage him and if he is too young or this was not a real experience for him I know God will deal with him again at another time, but for now I just praise God for his decision.

If anyone reading this blog has any advise please let me know because I think this is the correct way to handle this. What do you think?

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Name Prayers

My parents are involved in craft shows and travel to many different states. We try and go to some of the craft shows that are fairly close to our house. About two years ago we traveled to Tennessee to be with my parents at a show they were doing. While I was there I was introduced to a wonderful lady Leslie Stephens that does name prayers.

What is a name prayer? A name prayer is a prayer written especially for you or your child. You will provide Leslie with any information you want her to have and she prayerfully writes your child's prayer. You can give her any special concerns you have about your child, what they like, what you want for them etc. I am going to share with you my children's prayers.

***When I gave Leslie Seth's information he was facing health challenges and some problems with respecting others and I also told her about his love for other people.

S overeign Lord, I know that you have made plans to prosper me, plans to give me hope and a
bright future.

E stablish a sanctuary of compassion and mercy in my heart, so that I can minister to others.

T each me to honor my father and mother, live in harmony with my brothers, and willingly
serve you all the days of my life.

H elp me to clearly recognize my sin, so that I can humble myself and seek true repentance.

***Patton loves baseball, and is a very compassionate person.

P recious Lord, thank you for coaching me through all the games I have to play in life

A ppoint your angels charge over me to bless and keep me safe in all circumstances.

T ag my life with your capable hand, and let me always listen to the coaching of your spirit.

T each me to recognize my sin, repent and find restoration in Christ.

O ccupy all bases inside my heart, and create a dugout of your love within me.

N ever let me be silent in my faith, instead let me boldly share the gospel of Jesus Christ with
everyone I meet.

***Landon just blesses us with his joy and smiles he was small at the time this was written.

L ord of creation thank you for giving me the gift of joy and laughter.

A pply the blood of Jesus to my sins, and scatter them far from me

N ourish my spirit by planting me next to springs of living water.

D o immeasurably more in my life than I can ask or imagine.

O verflow my cup with godly love and mercy as I draw near to you.

N o matter where I go, go there before me paving paths of righteousness.

These are a little hard to read on the blog but you can see their name down the side and each letter of their name starts a new sentence.

I hope you like these because they mean alot to me. Leslie's link is listed on my blog.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Baseball

Well baseball has officially started around our house. Our entire family just loves baseball and are so excited that practice is finally underway. Seth is manager for his schools baseball team, Patton plays O Zone Dixie Youth and Landon plays T-Ball. I hope Little J enjoys living at the ballpark this summer:)

Saturday, March 7, 2009

PLENTY OF TIME

Little J had a visit yesterday with his Mom. I was speaking with the case aide the day before about the visit and about what is going on with Little J's mom. The case aide told me that she asked mom if she had made any progress finding a rehab and she stated no. She asked her what she had been doing and mom stated nothing "I still have plenty of time (5 mos) before they terminate my rights."


This comment makes me so angry because these parents do not stop to think or even care about what the impact of this has on their kids. They only worry about themselves and nothing else. They never stop to think about the emotions and attachments that their children develop for their foster parents not to mention the emotions that we the foster family may feel. In Little J's case we are the only family he has ever really know.

I am really struggling right now about my feelings toward Little J's mom and the system as a whole. Please keep Little J and our entire family in your prayers

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

FROM THE BEGINNING

I have been thinking about where I should start with this blog and I feel like I need to add a little more about our placement from the beginning so here it goes.

We received a call from DHR in July about 3 children that needed a home. The oldest was a little girl that was 3, a little girl 2 and a little boy 15 mos ( sibling group). The foster care worker asked if we were willing to take these children and my heart said yes but my head should have done a little more thinking but when you receive those calls you feel like you have to make a decision right then and I personally have a hard time saying no when it comes to children. So of course I said yes. They were very precious children but had never had very much discipline and were very much a handful. We kept them for about a month and then Little J came into care and he has a heart condition and needed a stay at home mom to care for him. So the 3 children we had were moved and Little J came to live with us.

From the time we saw Little J we loved him. It was a little difficult in the beginning for some of the family because he is biracial and that was just something some of the family had to get used to. I met Little J's biological mom the next week and I decided that I could help her and wanted to help her. She was young and grew up in a very similar situation that she was about to try and raise her son in. I thought that all she needed was support, a role model, prayer and that I could give her all that. Well I tried really hard to help her. I drove her to rehab, took her to pay fines for probation, picked her up for visits, bought her a dress for court, gave her encouragement as much as possible, and even brought her into my home to spend the day with us I I tell you all this not for praise but to let you know that I truly tried to help her.

Everything that she told me I believed to a certain extent but my husband kept telling me Paula she is an addict and don't fall for everything she says. She went to detox for a week and then went to her first rehab attended two meetings and dropped out stating she could not get a ride but transportation was provided as long as she called them. She then started another rehab and again quit because of transportation reasons. Then there was the last rehab she started on Monday 01-25-09and left on Tuesday 01-26-09 and to today's date she is not enrolled in any treatment.

I do believe I guess that she loves her child as much as maybe she knows how but I have a really hard time understanding how you can have such a precious baby boy and not fight with all you have to get better and get him home.

I have now backed off and I only allow her to call once per week and we visit only when she calls DHR and schedules a visit. I do this not to be mean and Little J has to be my focus and priority at this point. I cannot do it for her. If she does decided to make a lifelong commitment to getting clean and staying clean then I will be the first to help her.

You may ask me will you ever do foster care again if Little J should have to leave and I would have to say I am not sure. Do you regret your decision to foster and I would say absolutely not because as I stated in my previous blog if we had said no we would have missed out on this wonderful, precious gift that God has graciously blessed our family with and that in itself makes this whole journey worth it.







VISITING KINDERGARTEN

Landon's preschool class is going to visit kindergarten today. I am not ready to let him go to school yet. I am already feeling sad and its not even the first day of school. Oh no!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

LET IT SNOW!!!!

My kids are soooo excited that it is snowing here. I think this is probably the first real good snow Landon my 5 year old has ever seen. I will post some pictures later today.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Our Circle of Love

I would like to start this blog by telling you a little about myself and family. My name is Paula. I am married to Chyne and we have three boys Seth, Patton and Landon. I would like this blog to be a place where I can share with you about my wonderful family and our amazing yet frustrating journey through the process of fostering and adopting.

We are a very busy family and very involved with our church, schools, and extra curricular activities. Chyne is a contractor, I am an aide on a handicap bus, Seth is in the 8th grade and manger of his schools basketball and baseball teams, Patton is in the 7th grade and plays baseball, football, and is in the process of trying out for the golf team, Landon is 5 and plays t-ball and Little J is just along for the ride.

To catch you up on where we are, we started our journey through foster care to adopt a daughter but my how God has changed our hearts and by the way God really does have a sense of humor. Let me explain that last comment. As I stated earlier we began this journey to adopt a waiting daughter from foster care. We only wanted a girl and we were NOT doing foster care. Well here we are one year later right in the middle of foster care and yes you guessed it we are wonderfully blessed with a 1 year old baby boy who I will call Little J.

Once we realized that God had different plans for us than what we had we discussed this with our sons and made a decision as a family to foster. Little J came to us in August and has truly changed our lives forever. I do not regret for one minute the decision to foster because our family would have missed out on loving Little J.

I do not know what the future holds for our family and Little J all I do know is that I would not trade this journey for anything because we have been truly blessed.