Monday, April 30, 2012

Happy 8th Gotcha Day!

8 years ago hubby and I jumped into this journey of parenthood by adopting our first son!  We walked into a CA hospital nursery never to be the same again :)  Our son has an intense LOVE of all things reptile and we decided (after TONS of begging) that he was ready for his first real pet.  He has named her Striker and he is totally in love!  Happy Gotcha Day sweet boy...I think getting a snake and letting it live in my house is a sure sign of our love for you!!!!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Catching Up

We've been busy here with my sister, niece and nephew in town for the past several days.  We have enjoyed going to the beach, Disney World and just hanging out and catching up.  Baby and Moosie had a FUN first time at Disney :)

Yesterday Baby had his first 6 hour visit with his Uncle/Aunt.  I guess it went ok.  They invited his other brother (the one who is adopted by another foster family) over as well.  I asked them to be sure to give him a nap especially because Disney was the day before and the poor kid was exhausted.  When they showed up in the parking lot, he was fast asleep in his car seat and according to her he was having too much fun and "couldn't sleep" at their house so he got a 20 min nap in the car.  Grrr....poor kid!

I haven't heard anything from bio-Dad.  After he was supposed to have a visit last Tues. he never called and confirmed, so that was 6 weeks straight without a visit.  3 weeks with no contact with me.  I wonder what went on at his Mother's house????  Anyway, Tuesday is rolling around again....I wonder what will happen.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A visit? Uuummm...maybe not!

Yesterday afternoon I missed a call from Baby's CM.  I listened to the VM and she said that Baby's Dad had left her a message over the weekend that he wanted a visit this Tues (today).  UGH!  It had been over 2 weeks since anyone had heard from him.  So I texted her and asked if it was going to be the same time.  She then said he had to confirm the visit (Mon) and still hadn't.  It was 4pm at that point.  I didn't hear from her again, so I texted this am and he never confirmed, so no visit.

WHY???  Why do this to all these people and especially to BABY??!!

I tried texting him again and nothing.  He won't respond to anything.  It's so weird.  I don't know if his phone number has changed for the millionth time or if he just isn't interested in communicating with me anymore.  Whatever!  I guess he doesn't realize how he's messing this up pretty bad.

He's missed two drug screens which automatically ='s a (+) test.  He hasn't visited in 6 weeks.  Does he really think the judge is going to look favorably on this???  I still wonder if he's communicated with the aunt/uncle at all.

The rollercoaster is on it's way up and we are almost to the top!  Wonder how long we'll sit up there? lol!

Monday, April 23, 2012


Baby had to get some blood drawn for his pulmonologist to test, so I made the appt for this afternoon.  I knew it wasn't going to be pretty.  I was right :(  They tried to in each one of his arms, but he was writhing so much that 2 adults and the one taking the blood just couldn't get it.  So now we get to go back 2 more times (they need a lot of blood!)  The whole waiting room stopped and stared as we walked out...yeah...I'm pretty sure people OUTSIDE the building could hear my baby screaming :(  Poor thing gave that tech the dirtiest baby look he could and I'm pretty sure there were some "baby bad words" in there too! lol!!

One of the techs was an older AA woman.  She jokingly asked how a "white woman got that beautiful black baby".  I joked back saying "he came out that way!"  She then told me a story about how she was recently at the nursing home and one of the residents there had her grandchild LIVING THERE with her!!!!  Seriously??  In what alternate universe would anyone think that a nursing home would be a great place to raise a child?


My sister posted this on her blog and as I was sitting holding Baby and the tears started flowing as we listened and he lifted his hands in worship!

"You're gonna have all of me!"

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Happy Birthday to Me!

My best birthday present today was a text from our GAL...

"Well our attorney is filing with the court they have already started the process"

Of course she is referring to TPR :)  She also wrote that we have the best attorney possible!  Now, praying that the judge sees things from our perspective of what is best for baby!  From what I have heard this judge is pro- bio family, so she could see that his siblings are with the aunt/uncle and still decide to place him there, but of course we are praying that she realizes that *we* are his family too and leaves him where he is!!!

No word from Dad...2 weeks and counting!  I don't know how long he has to be gone with no contact to have it considered abandonment, but this certainly doesn't look good.  He's totally out of the picture on everyone's radar (as far as getting baby back).  April is going pretty to get through May and just a few days in nerves are going to be fried by June 6th! lol!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Weird stuff going on...

It has been 12 days since bio-Dad has called, texted or had any contact with myself, the GAL, or the case worker! This is sooooo unlike him especially since he has been involved since before Baby was even born (he knew the state would be taking baby since her other kids were already in the system). He left 14 days ago to see his sick mother a good 5-6 hours away. I received a text when he got there and she had come home from the hospital. It said he'd be back this week. I have sent several texts and gotten no response. The GAL and case worker as response.

Has he given up? Is he just so overwhelmed with the rest of his life that he can't focus on his son? Hmmmmmmmmmm,......................

It seems as though the aunt/uncle's interest is not as enthusiastic as it once was (a month or so ago). I'm not sure why...have they realized that having a toddler is hard work? Have they realized that his placement there "complicates" their usual plans? Have they had a realization that perhaps this isn't what is best for baby?? Eeek...diapers, food, clothing, all adds up when you are already financially strapped.

The GAL is going hard for TPR! Dad dropping off the grid is making that easier! Of course I'm sure he'll resurface at some point, but sheesh! A month ago I was starting to grieve the potential loss of my baby. Now...there is HOPE! My sweet baby **COULD** be staying???!!!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Getting excited :)

In just 12 shorts days my first "baby" will be 8 years old!!! We will be blessed to actually have family in town to help us celebrate! When you live in FL, have guests and a birthday, what better place to celebrate than Disney??!! My older two kiddos have been to Disney 2 times before, but now they are taller and able to do more. This will be Moosie and Baby's first time at Disney!!! I cannot wait to be there to experience it all with them :) If Baby leaves us this could very well be his only chance to experience Disney and I will have lots of pictures!! This will also be my nephew and neice's first time (they are 9 and 6). I think it will be a lot of work with two little ones, but it will also be BLAST at the Mouse House!!!

For FL resident right now they have 3 days tickets for just $99 a person!!!! So...the kids get to go not once, but 3 times in the next 5 weeks!! I think in May we'll rent a place over there for the night and make a mini-vacation out of it and use the other 2 days (need to be used by May 24th).

Being the organized dork that I am, I already have a list of all the essential things to have with us at all times in the backpack :) Now I need to find the most brightly colored t-shirts I can find and I plan to get a cute iron-on for them so my kids are uniform and easy to pick out of the crowd. I plan to pin their (first) name and my cell number on the inside of their shirt in case they get lost. It happened to my nephew several years ago (got separated from the crowd of us!) and he found a stranger, handed them the paper and said "please call my mom and dad." Thank God he was found and returned to the group quickly. No matter how many precautions we take, you never know when something might happen. The littles will of course be in the double stroller although I would like to let Michael walk some (I'm sure he'll be begging). I hate those leash things, but with a kid like Michael in a big crowd like that, I'm thinkin' it just might be better to have one for him versus losing him! Hee longer a foster child I now can use it!!

I welcome any other comments on suggestions for other good ideas to keep in mind!!!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

It's a party!!

It was party day today!!!! We decided to throw one big party for all of our kid's birthdays, adoption days, and gotcha day's. We have 1 b-day in Jan, 1 gotcha day in Feb, 1 b-day, 1 adoption day and 1 gotcha day in March, 1 b-day and 1 gotcha day in April, 1 Adoption Day in May and 1 b-day in June. That's a lot to celebrate! We decided to squish it all into one big happy party :) (we have one adoption day in Oct and 1 gotcha day in Dec too :) )

We had a get together with friends (all family is out of town :( ) at our HOA's clubhouse where the kids played on the playground and swam in the pool! We ate, talked, ate some more, then we hit the cake too! We are stuffed but blessed by those who support us along this crazy journey!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Conversation in the car

For my kiddos every black man is Baby's uncle (they are in the car and see him when I do the transfer) or his Dad. I have to clarify that no, in fact that is not his uncle or Dad. I took the kids grocery shopping this morning and on our way out we saw a black man walking across the parking lot. This was the conversation that followed...

Andrew: Look! It's Baby's Dad!
Me: No, that's not Baby's Dad (they've never seen him)
Andrew: Oh, I meant it's his uncle! You know..the big fat, bald guy we see when we drop Baby off!

Ahhhh!!!! After explaining that his words were not kind and that would hurt Uncle's feelings if he heard him say something like that he replied with...

"Ok..I won't say it in front of him, but it's true. Mom, I can tell he doesn't eat healthy!"

At what age do children learn the art of tact?! Wait...don't answer that...I know too many adults who don't have any (all those stupid comments/questions we get as adoptive/foster parents!!) Well, we will do our best to teach least he doesn't say things like this in front of people anymore like he did when he was younger.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

It's not over yet!

Our GAL had a meeting with their attorney today to discuss what's been going on! I was waiting on pins and needles to see how it went! She called a bit ago and basically said that from now until court we will be working our tails off (and by we and I mostly mean her) to build a case against the aunt/uncle and for TPR. The attorney gave her exactly what we would need to do this and how to go about being the most effective. Of course when all is said and done it will be up to the judge to decide on how to proceed with Baby's future, but all hope is not lost. Of course I am still praying that bio-dad "wakes up" and just surrenders making this process infinitely easier! I have to search for my old calender and get dates of visits from when he was like 3 and 4 months old...too bad I moved and can't seem to find these little things that are oh so important. I'll tear the whole house up if I have to! lol!

I found all the documentation that I needed on my blog! Yay! it was worse than I remembered. They only had 3 sibling visits at the mall with baby and 1 overnight and it was all in the month of June 2011. That's it...until the recent visits ONLY because they think Baby will be with them under a PG. Hmmmmm.....we'll see what the judge says about all this! :)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Sharing with kids

So I need all of you experienced at saying goodbye to give me some advice! How/when did you share the information with your other kiddos??? We are pretty certain that Baby will be leaving, and want to prepare them, but I feel like now is not the time to tell them (2 months is a long time to a child). Children feel stress so much and one of my children in particular does not do well at all with change. He easily gets dysregulated and is a very anxious person. Unfortunately he is also the child with deepest bond to Baby! He is the one who has said time and time again.."I hope we get to adopt Baby" Now my kids "get" that with foster care sometimes you have to say goodbye...they know it's a possibility, but they haven't had to do it yet and neither have we. So....all you seasoned foster did you prepare your kids??? Especially those with anxiety issues??

Tuesday, April 3, 2012


Ya certainly hasn't been deemed "over" and no judge has said "we are moving baby" but at the same time I feel like I need to start the grieving process and give myself time to slowly let him go. I guess after yesterday's meeting I just "know" that baby will most likely be leaving us. The chances are slim (although I know God can change that!) that he would stay here and I feel like I almost need to grieve some now so that I can be stronger for my kids when the actual day comes.

Last night hubby was fast asleep in bed and all I could do was think about the last 14 months of Baby's life. ALL that we have experienced with him...the awesome things like first smile, learning to sit/walk, all the feeding fun, etc. and then the icky stuff like longs nights, getting puked on a lot, and of course our hospital stay. Tears flowed on my pillow as I thought of all these things. They may be able to take my baby away from me , but those are always things that I will hold in my Mama heart...those can never be taken from me.

A friend of mine could be going through a similar situation very soon as well. We have both talked about how even though this is hurting us we think more about our babies. Will they feel abandoned? We hurt for their hurting hearts knowing that those on the other end simply do understand what these children will be going through.

I think I will start to pour through our tons of pictures of the last 14 months and put together a nice book so he can always have a piece of us with him and always remember the place where it all began. Hubby and I have talked a bit and shared and cried! The next 2 months + will be gut wrenching. Can we do it? Will we do it all over again? YES! God is faithful and his grace will be enough to put us back together again and say yes to the next little one who needs us!

Monday, April 2, 2012


I got a text from Baby's GAL this morning saying she was meeting with Bio-Dad today, do I want to come? Ummm....ok! A bit later I get a text from Dad telling me about the meeting (surprised!) His mother is in the hospital and he is leaving town tonight to go see her. That meant that he would miss his visit again this week, so I offered to bring baby with me so he could see him as well chatted.

We got there and Baby freaked out! :( It was across the street from where we meet aunt/uncle and he knew something was up! He calmed down after he realized I was staying and of course the french fries didn't hurt either! LOL!

Basically we wanted Dad to know that he has options. I think after our meeting he realized that it's not looking good for him to get baby back because he's just in a hard place now (and no one sees that changing soon). bullet format here is what the meeting was brought down to...

  • Do not trust what anyone said UNLESS it came straight from them
  • Dad WILL NOT give up his rights...he said they'd have to take them from him
  • Dad does not have the disdain for aunt/uncle as I was told
  • Dad wants baby to have a real relationship with his siblings
  • Dad is appreciative of all we have done for baby and didn't want to hurt my feelings (don't worry...I assured him that we want what is best for's not about US!)
  • I love our GAL even more today!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
At the end of our meeting the GAL was SO SWEET and gave Dad the bus fare he'd need to get to his very sick $100! Then she handed me a one-hour massage gift certificate!!!!! She said "if anyone deserves it, it has to be you!" As if that were not enough, as we were saying our goodbyes she said to hold on a second...she came back with a bag full of snacks for Dad for his train trip and a whole Easter basket full of goodies for my boys!!!!!!!!!! It is amazing the people we have met on this journey. There are some really stinky things about foster care, but I can see that as much as she made an impact on us, we have made an impact on her too. She now is openly talking about God and said she has started praying, especially for this case! It's exciting!
Shining on!

To sum up...I have this gut feeling that baby will leave us...court in June is going to be tough. I will be sure to have my Kleenex handy! I trust that we have done everything that we can do in our earthly power and no matter the outcome God will receive all the glory and we can have PEACE. Now of course I will be a blubbery mess, but I think that goes without saying!