Space for Older Foster Children: The Importance of Space of Love

November 21st, 2012

unicornRumor warned against becoming foster parents of older children while having younger children. That's the advice I'd heard for years. Younger children can't always express their feelings or what's going on, and sometimes it's just easier on everyone if the ages of the children in the home either match or you become a foster parent after they have all gotten older. Sadly, that was my mindset for quite awhile. And with a toddler and two elementary school kids, I stuck pretty firmly with that. But then everything changed with just one phone call. One Phone Call, One Emergency My best friend, Cassie, works at DSS, monitoring foster care cases. At times, Lake and I had thought about becoming foster parents. After all, we have this… [more]

Forever Families

October 13th, 2012
Posted By: on Foster Care

1389105_happy_familyOne of the coolest things about the month of November is that it is National Adoption Month. I love that there is a whole month dedicated to the children who have been adopted, the parents that have adopted and the children who are waiting to be adopted. Adopted, adopted, adopted. I love to throw that word around. And this November that is exactly what we all should be doing. There is no better way to let people know about the need prevalent in foster care than to tell about your own experience with fostering and adoption. There is a lot of fear around these two actions. It is not unfounded. Adoption from foster care brings many unknowns into a home. Yet, there are… [more]

A Home Filled with Love and Laughter

October 6th, 2012
Posted By: on Foster Care

617844_never_grow_upAs I sit here thinking this morning, I cannot help but bring focus on the huge need for foster parents today. There are so many children in need of solid, stable homes and so few prepared to stand in this gap. It takes a lot of dedication, sacrifice and strength to place yourself in a situation that will be trying. If you know that it will be difficult going into it, healthy fear sets in. I use the word healthy before fear because it is accurate. There is not service to be found in walking into a foster care situation without the ability to handle it. An honest look at fostering, from someone who has done it, will show that their are daily… [more]

Calling Out the Greats

September 30th, 2012
Posted By: on Foster Care

1207125_promiseI think that one of the most amazing people I have ever had the privilege of watching was a foster mother who intentionally opened her life to foster teens in her area. I have never seen a  woman so willing to deal with the issues and baggage that a teen brings home in order to change a life. This woman used to tell me that her goal was to ensure that the teenagers in her care were given the opportunities that they needed for success. She not only made sure that they got the services that they needed, she also sat with them and made sure that their fully understood their responsibilities. This was good for the teens in her care because… [more]

Does Not Play Well With Others

August 30th, 2012
Posted By: on Foster Care

1121033_moonI have found that I do not play well with others. This may come as a surprise to some of you who know me. I appear to be the one who has the world by the tail. That is true- to a point. I do enjoy life and the people that I am walking with every day. I see no other way to live. Yet, there are hard times. Life is tricky. It is difficult to maneuver. The children in my home can wear me out. They are a constant drain on my emotions. I work harder keeping this family afloat then I have ever worked at anything. That is why I do not play well with others. When I get time… [more]

Touching the Life of a Teen

June 27th, 2012
Posted By: on Foster Care

1095865_happy_time_1I am sitting in a very hot room waiting for a pack of teenagers to head my way. I am their teacher. I look forward to every moment of that teaching time but I have to admit, I am relishing the quiet of this room to collect my thoughts before I am overtaken. Teens are an interesting bunch. They have so much energy and a certain power that resides in their youth. I think that is why many people covet the teen years and wish them back. If the teen years are good, they are very good. If they are not- they are terrible. This is where foster teens struggle. They are in what some would call the prime of their lives and… [more]

Respect and Research

June 21st, 2012
Posted By: on Foster Care

258822_nephew_sepiaOne of the hardest things to decide in life is whether to foster a child. It is such a difficult decision because of the huge change it makes on the existing family dynamic. The family relationship is such a precious thing and so very fragile. When children are added to that- things change. These changes are not always good. The children that are coming into your home often have baggage that follows. This coupled with the other children (and your own) baggage can make for hard times. I believe that some of these hard times can be avoided. In order to successfully maneuver fostering a healthy dose of reality must exist. The reality is that you (as a parent) are not going to… [more]

Comfortable Nights

June 4th, 2012
Posted By: on Foster Care

1158476_rainy_street_at_nightI am sitting in the dark blogging while the rain falls outside. This is my favorite way to unwind after a long day. That and we sure need the rain (this coming from a farmer's wife.) I love to sit with my little family and revel in the warmth of my beautiful comfortable home- I am blessed. My dream is that every child can experience lazy, rainy, comfortable nights. There is something about snuggling with a daddy on the sofa that makes life okay. The safety and stability that comes from the intimate family moments is the reason that foster care is successful in rebuilding a child's life. I have seen children who have learned how to love again by the power of a… [more]

Gratitude

April 23rd, 2012
Posted By: on Foster Care

1167253_love_u_mammaToday, I have been thinking about the mass number of foster children I have routine contact with and wonder how in the world things have gotten to this point. It seems that in my area, the need for foster parents grows on a daily basis and the suitable homes are overflowing with kids. This is not a good thing. I worry about a world that has so many kids in need of rescuing. The good news is that there are many people stepping up to the plate. They want to make a difference in a child's life and are willing to invest themselves in the greater good. I love that. I heard a quote recently that put everything in perspective for me. It… [more]

Tough Love

March 31st, 2012
Posted By: on Foster Care

485740_steel_heartSometimes on mornings like this I just want to crawl back into bed and sleep for another three or four hours. Doesn't that sound good? Yet, I know that there is a lot of work that must be done in this house, the lawn and with the kids. I know that my responsibilities for today alone could easily require 30 hours to complete. In lieu of all that I must do, I sit here on this fine morning and blog. Makes sense to me! Responsibility and respect for those under my care keeps me on track. There are many things that I would rather not do. I had to fold and put away the laundry this morning. I did not want to. Some… [more]