It Took Longer Than I Planned

I said I would be back, although I really didn’t plan on waiting this long to come back.

Life has been a little hectic and quite honestly, it’s a little challenging to blog right now.  Not because there is a shortage of stories and information to share, but because I have to be careful about what I share regarding my foster children.  Obviously, I can’t post pictures.  I can’t give out their names.  I can’t share details.  So let me share the latest.

Things have been going well.  Very well in fact!  Of the six foster children we’ve had, these two have been the easiest.  Not that any of them were terribly difficult, but challenges and foster children just go hand-in-hand.  Heck, challenges and children in general just go hand-in-hand 🙂

Little Bit came to us at 5-month of age.  She was a bit behind developmentally and I had never seen a baby spit up as much as she did.  After a change of formula the spit-up is greatly reduced.  Not that it’s stopped altogether, but it there a definite improvement.  We’ve spent a lot of time holding her upright, giving her a lot of attention and plenty of  floor time.  It appears to have paid off as she is not only on target developmentally now, but is ahead in some areas.  Good stuff!!!!

Big Sis also came to us with some struggles, primarily in speech.  We have seen some definite improvement with her as well, although she will likely need some speech therapy this school year.

She and Naomi have hit it off quite well, which is both good and bad.  They enjoy playing dress-up, playing with Barbie, singing, dancing, playing video games and swimming.  Swimming has been her biggest achievement to date.  She was scared the first time she got in the pool, but can now swim across the pool with ease.  She is also able to jump in, turn around and swim back to the side.  We’ve working a bit on diving down to get boys off the bottom of the pool and treading water.  Both are still a challenge for her, but she is really starting to get floating on her back.  We still make her wear a life vest in the pool when she’s playing with the girls, but when we’re in with her, we take it off and let her practice her new-found swimming skills.

Like I said, having children around is not without challenges.  Probably the biggest challenge is getting the middle two to not leave others out when playing and getting Naomi to be less bossy.  Naomi has really enjoyed having an older sister role, but there is a learning curve and she has struggled a bit on that curve.

Both Lili and Naomi have been very helpful with the girls and the baby is quite fond of both of them.

Sadly, we don’t know if they’ll be with us much longer.  On Friday, there will be a hearing to determine placement.  Only one of their parents was charged this time (sad to say this wasn’t the first time the parents have had their children removed).  As a result, they have requested that the children be returned to the non-offending parent or given to grandma.  Honestly, we don’t know what to expect, but are trying to prepare for the call that we need to pack up their things so CPS can remove them from our care and turn them over to parent or grandma.

Foster care certainly isn’t easy.  On one hand, you want them to be together with family  On the other hand, you question whether or not family is the best choice for them.

Until then, we’ll continue to love them, provide them stability and enjoy our time together, however long that might be.

Stay tuned for updates.

 

 

Try, Try Again

I’ve started several blog posts over the last week and have yet to finish any of them.

Writer’s block?

Image result for writer's block

A little bit.

I have things to write about.  After all, I’m living life and that alone gives all of us something to write about.  My struggle seems to be fear.  Fear that I’m going to cross a line if I share too many of my thoughts and feelings.  Fear that my readers won’t want to read.  Fear of negative comments.

Fear!

This is my blog.  I should be able to write whatever I feel and if someone doesn’t like it, they can move on, right?!

Some are very good about doing this.  Others feel it is their destiny in life to criticize and condemn those who they don’t agree with.  It’s the single biggest reason I dislike social media.  It’s also one of the biggest reasons I removed myself from Facebook a few years ago (although after 1 1/2 years I returned).  Still, it’s those very people who feel the need to share their negativity with the world that I fear.

Silly, I suppose.  After all, I can easily delete comments, but I also think that everyone has a right to their opinion.  I just wish that those who want to share their opinion when not asked, would simply go write their own blog instead of stopping by to share their thoughts on a blog that doesn’t belong to them.  It’s what one invites into their life by blogging though.

So here I sit, with lots of thoughts on politics, equal rights, gardening, foster care, adoption, religion, woman’s rights, children, family, white privilege, travel, animals, pets, and much much more.  Some topics seeming to be non-controversial, while others easily ruffle feathers.

Instead, today I’ll write about trying and trying over and over again to work up the nerve to state my opinion on various topics.  Topics that I want my children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren to know about me when I’m gone.  My diary of sorts, put out on public display for others to read then decide to agree, disagree or not really care about.

And next time you tune in, you’ll either be reading about my children, adoption, my attempts at raising money for a foster care project (you can click here to see what I’m talking about), gardening or maybe, just maybe my thoughts on Trump or equal rights or racism.

 

 

Busy Day

I’ve been trying to get into a better blogging routine in the last week and was doing pretty well until today.

We head out on our cruise this Sunday and I am in full cleaning and packing mode.  As such, my blog has taken a back seat.

While we’re gone, I will be disconnecting, so there will be no blog posts published.  I do, however, plan to write a little something every day.  When I return, I should have several posts, with photos, ready to share.

Image result for bon voyage Cruise royal caribbean

 

 

 

Blog Therapy

Since posting Big Feelings, I have begun to feel a little better.  Not that I don’t still miss the boys, but sharing my sadness and heartbreak has led to some healing.  It has also helped that friends have reached out to me.  Many understand, at least a little of what I’ve been going thru. Hearing from others helps me feel more normal and that I’m not alone.

So I guess it’s official – Blog Therapy works!

Image result for blog therapy

Now I wonder if I’ll be able to let go of the feeling that we should still continue down the path of helping other children in foster care?  Having a heart for those who are most vulnerable is so rewarding, but at time it really sucks!  As my husband has reminded me many times, we can’t help them all.  Still with millions in need, I can’t help but question at what point we must say “stop.”  After all, if we hadn’t left Illinois, we would still have the boys.  Thus, we wouldn’t have stopped.

And the blog therapy continues.

 

NEWS – Turning a Corner

NEWS!  In this case is stands for North, East, West, South.  Direction!  It’s something I’m struggling with lately in regards to my blog.

I’m in a rut and I feel a bit lost on which direction I should take my blog.  I want it to be in a place that makes me happy, because ultimately I need to be happy with my blog and I’m not there right now.

When I started writing almost 8 years ago, it seemed so simple.

Hubby and I were on a very big adventure.  We were adopting and there was so much to write about. I wanted to share all the pictures of this beautiful baby girl that we were bringing into our lives, our home and our family.  I wanted to share the ups and downs of adoption.  I wanted to document the journey and have something that our daughter could take with her thru life.

From the beginning

 

Adoption #2 was a different experience, yet I still had much to share, but I also had a lot of things happening here at home.  Lili was growing quickly which gave me lots of stories to share along the way.  The blog turned a corner and I was not just documenting our adoption journey, but was documenting our life as a growing family.

Starting again!

 

After bringing Naomi home, we were adjusting to life with one more when tragedy struck and we lost our youngest son.  I was grieving my son while also feeling happiness that I now had two beautiful little girls in my life.  It’s was a STRUGGLE!!!!!  I had to be strong for my girls at a time when I didn’t feel strong.  I had to do everything I could to help them feel safe and secure when I felt my world had just fallen apart.  As a result, the blog turned another corner.

Our life moved forward.  The girls continued to grow.  I took on the challenge of becoming a homeschool mom.  Hubby and I made a decision to significantly change direction in life hoping to leave our life here and settle on a small farm somewhere.  Then life changed direction on us causing us to put farming on habitual hold.  We also opened our home to foster children again, accepting two little boys into our lives.  Then most recently we decided to get back into camping.  No tent camping this time around.  We’ll take our second home on the road as soon as our RV, Georgette (a name I just now decided to throw into the ring of possibilities) arrives.  And once again I feel my blog turning a corner.

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So many things have happened in our lives over the last 8 years.  Big things which gave me lots of material to blog about.   And somehow, even with 4 kids under the age of 8 living under this roof, I feel a little lost.  No big life events happening, just the day-to-day stuff that keeps me busy.

My blog is turning a corner.  I don’t know if I’ll take it to the north, east, west or south, but I need to find a direction that makes the most sense and write about those things that matter to me and my family.

Hopefully, one day I won’t ponder this so much and will instead sit down at the keyboard and have the words that describe this crazy life of ours with lots of pictures to share.  I think that’s what my girls will want to one day look back on.

 

Apology

I apologize for not posting more on my blog.  It’s not for lack of topics, because quite frankly, there is A LOT happening in our lives.  Much of what is happening isn’t something I feel comfortable putting out for public consumption though.  Or maybe it would be more accurate to say that I’m not quite sure how to share some of what’s happening.  Sometimes tough stuff happens in life and it’s best to just sit back and take time to discuss and think things through.

That’s where we are right now.  We’re sitting back and taking time to discuss and think things through.  We’re giving something our utmost attention in an effort to make the best decision.

 

Fortunately, not all of our life is full of tough stuff.  Some of our life is full of funny stuff, especially when it comes out of the mouths of my children.

For example, here is a conversation that took place in our house today.

Lili:  Naomi, it may be too monkey to take a walk today.

Me:  What?

Lili:  It may be too monkey to take a walk today?

Me:  Monkey?

Lili:  Yes.

Me:  Oh, you mean muggy?

Lili:  Yes.

Me:  (walking out to the garage trying not to laugh hysterically)

 

Then a short time ago this conversation took place.

Naomi:  Mom, police and please rhyme.

Me:  Police and please don’t rhyme.

Naomi:  Yes they do.  (Said with complete authority and confidence).

Me:  (No response)

 

Naomi has also become the song bird of the house.  Many mornings she’ll be playing with toys, but instead of pretend verbal conversation, she’ll be singing the conversation.  It’s like a constant musical in my house 🙂

 

If your going thru any tough stuff right now, I hope you’re also able to smile and laugh at the little things in life.