And She Loved A Little Boy Very, Very Much…

3 02 2018

Tomorrow is our foster son’s last visit with his bio mom.

Last week we had court. A judge sat behind his bench waiting to decide the fate of three families, two sets of parents, and one little boy.

What had been anticipated to be a 1-2 day trial turned into a court session that ran over an hour behind then only lasted 30 minutes.

We lived miracles last week.

The day before court we had mediation with bio mom. She came into the meeting contesting the Termination of Parental Rights (TPR). But after speaking with us and I’m sure many sleepless nights considering her options, in the end, she decided to consent to the termination of her rights and agree to the adoption of her precious little boy.

I’m still unsure how to process that scene. We sat across the table and watched as the court document was signed. I still have trouble wrapping my head around the concept that a SIGNATURE is all it takes to sever those ties. It looks so simple, but was oh so amazingly swift and final.

I hugged her and thanked her. I acknowledged her sacrifice. I’ve learned that love comes in so many ways. She showed an act of love I’m not capable of.

We got word earlier that morning that bio dad’s attorney was asking for a continuance. Someone else hadn’t done their job correctly. So we expected the next morning to bring consent and TPR for bio mom and a continuance for bio dad.

While we waited. I sat with my son’s bio mom. She sat alone on one of the hardest days of her life and I couldn’t ignore that. Maybe I was the last person she wanted to see or talk to. I don’t know. But I asked questions about the children we share. How they got their names. Who they take after. What kinds of things she was going to do with the baby on his last few visits. Our parent aide has agreed to record her playing with the baby and sending me the videos so I can hold on to them for my children.

That hour they ran behind? Bio dad’s guardian ad litem and the court worked some things out and the GAL consented on bio dad’s behalf. I was surprised, too, when bio dad’s sister told me they were happy with how things were working out. She hugged me after court was done. I couldn’t believe we had the support from both sides of the family.

In the end, I couldn’t comprehend – I still can’t – the enormity of her loss. To gain my son, another mother LOST hers. But going through this journey with her for almost two years, the Lord has provided many opportunities for me to understand, to a small degree, the heart crushing cost to one mother so another could raise the child they both loved.

I wanted something special for this last visit. I used his footprints for this card andΒ  included the actual footprints with it so she has those too.

It’s so incredibly inadequate, but it’s all I have.

Advertisements




Mediation Day Tomorrow

10 01 2018

Tomorrow is mediation.
We’re praying for a miracle.
There’s a small, small possibility bio mom will consent after mediation. This is our prayer.

This can be a very hard day for the bio parents. They’re discussing what the future looks like without their child.

Emotions can make us build walls and block possibilities. We have the option of going in and not bending. We can choose to have the attitude of “too bad so sad for you”.

But one of the things the Lord has been trying to teach me the last few years is that LOVE is usually the best course. Hate, insecurity, anger, a lack of empathy – NONE OF THESE will help our cause.

It is a negotiation time, but my child is not a car. These people are not questionable salesmen. They’re parents losing their child.

So although love, empathy, understanding, and generosity don’t condone their actions of the past, they can certainly open doors to the future.

Here’s to open doors.





I Want To Vinyl All the Things

10 01 2018

My husband bought me a heat press for Christmas and now it seems nothing is safe from me and the HTV πŸ™‚

So tonight, I did a shirt and beanie for my youngest. For the most part, I like how they turned out, but I do think the words on the beanie would have looked better in white. But I was too worried about not being able to see the white as well.

Dang. May have to play some more πŸ˜‰

I also wasn’t sure if the knit beanie would be okay in the heat press. I’m kind of going with the idea that if something doesn’t melt in the heat press, it’s fair game for HTV.

The knit beanie didn’t melt πŸ˜€

Here’s how they turned out.

Thanks for stopping by!

Xoxo

File for the shirt: I still live…





A Christmas Surprise REVEALED!

25 12 2017

So, I’ve done this thing for my kiddos where I’ve hand made stockings for them.

One of my 18yo daughters came to us a little later in her life, and I wanted to make sure she had a handmade stocking, too.

Unfortunately, life isn’t as simple as it once seemed. My body can no longer do the same things it used to, so it took me longer to get this done. I also had to think outside the box.

I can no longer do the needlework, but I can make my Silhouette Cameo sing and boy did it. Here’s the “symphony” we created together.

There’s a pattern for the stocking. I had my Cameo cut it out for me.

I pulled different files from the Silhouette Design store and created the scene which I cut out of HTV. It’s kind of hard to see it in this picture, but the HTV is glittery πŸ™‚

This was my first HTV project, so I was a little nervous about applying the vinyl to the stocking front. But I watched a lot of videos and did my research. I even cut out test pieces and applied them before I tried this. Luckily, it worked πŸ™‚

The next step was sewing the stocking pieces together so it actually held things. I was nervous, but I managed to get through it and the sewn part turned out better than I thought it would. But I didn’t have very high expectations of myself, so that made it easier πŸ˜‰

Let me just stop here and say, I am not a seamstress. My husband has actually used the words, “I rue the day I bought you that thing.” (Meaning the sewing machine).

After creating the stocking I hand stitched the bling around the top and closed up that top seam (I left it until last to make sure I had enough space for her name. Math and numbers aren’t my strong suit). Last, I added a few sparkly things to the snowflakes and parts of the scene.

She saw it for the first time this morning. The look on her face was worth all the recuts and all the extra rolls of HTV I had to buy because I kept messing up.

She was truly surprised and really liked it.

To me, that’s the best part of Christmas. Giving of yourself and seeing someone’s joy later. And that giving can come in many forms, not just a glittery stocking. AND, even better, it’s something we can do all year.

So Merry Christmas my friends. May you feel the love of those around you and give it freely to those whose paths you cross.

Xoxo

Links to project pieces:

Stocking pattern (there are directions, but I did my own thing.)

Church, Snowflake scroll, Saying





Crafting and Speech Therapy

2 11 2017

My littlest kiddo is developmentally delayed. One of the delays is speech. The evaluation report used big scary words like “severe” and “profound deficits” in describing his delay.

At about 16 months old, his skill set was equivalent to that of a 3-6 month old.

So we’ve been doing speech therapy. He’s making progress even though it’s kind of slow going, but we have great people with great ideas and experience to back him up πŸ™‚

We’ve introduced signs, and he’s starting to get the hang of things now that he’s realized that communication makes his life better πŸ™‚

In addition to signs, we have pictures. The idea behind these is that he exchanges the pictures of the things he wants for the actual things he wants.

The therapist had a good system that worked for her when she’s working with kids, but it wasn’t as quick and easy as my situation needed. I needed something easy to get to and easily portable.

This is what I came up with πŸ™‚

I have things he knows the signs for, as well as words we’re starting to work on. I’ve also included family members’ pictures so we can add signs for their names, too.

I used my Silhouette program and machine to size and cut the pictures then laminated them. Lastly, I punched a hole in the corners and slid them on a binder ring. This ring is then attached to my belt loop. Easy to carry, always at our fingertips and I can continue to add pictures as necessary.

My hope is eventually, he’ll be speaking verbally. If he can’t, signs are good, too. The pictures are a good starting place for both and a good back up for him.

Thanks for stopping by!

Xoxo





This Crazy Foster Care Thing Update

11 08 2017

I've blogged a bit about my family and how it's put together. I've shared the books I've made for my foster son's bio mom. I've asked for prayers at crucial times in our case.

Yesterday, 70 days after the state suggested the case goal be changed to adoption (with us), we finally got the news.

The judge CHANGED THE CASE GOAL TO ADOPTION.

So, if you've prayed for us, thank you so much. We're not done, we're on a different path that may still take some time to finish. But we're on it and that's the important thing.

You might think I'm jumping up and down in excitement. I'm not. That sounds odd, doesn't it.

I'm relieved. I'm grateful. I'm conflicted.

This was the right call. But somewhere today, there's a mom, a mom who truly loves her son, who is learning that she will probably not get him back.

A mom who's heart is probably breaking. I can not celebrate my good fortune, not when I understand the magnitude of her loss. And I think that was a lesson I needed to learn. My heart aches for her.

The next goal is for the state to file the appropriate petitions in a timely/quick fashion. So, if you're a praying person, we'd be grateful for more prayers on our family's behalf.

And while you're praying, please remember his bio mom. I'm sure she can use some prayers, too.





I’m Not Dead

25 08 2014

But it has been a while since I posted.

In March we dropped off our three foster kids with their mom for the last time. It was bitter sweet. We’d spent thirteen months with them, but we helped a mom put her family back together.

We took a small break – my family so earned it – and May 29th welcomed a toddler and a teenager into the family. That makes six kids total now. We spent the summer getting to know each other better.

Now school’s back in session and there are finally moments (not many, but some) of quiet. There still doesn’t seem to be enough time for me to get done what I’d like though!

I kept trying to squeeze writing in. I’m about half way through a New Adult Adventure Romance kind of thing.

Because summer is the time to prepare for the MS ride we do in the fall, I missed out. It’s been hard this whole idea of not being able to do it all right now, but I’m coming to grips with it. The things I chose to do hold more importance. So, the ride is out for this year.

Hoping things will stabilize in a bit and I’ll find a way to get in everything I want to do πŸ™‚

Happy back to school time!