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

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.