Sunday, December 2, 2012

All my children collage

Here's the collage I posted the link for yesterday. I've had 10 fosters now... Torrie, Bri, Brittany, Kayla, Chase, Alea, Kimora, Samara, Kyana and Carolyn. Ages have run the gamut from 3 days to 20 years (in KY they can still be in care until 21).

And, of course, I always, always have my LITTLE M!!! :D


Saturday, December 1, 2012

Fall is here

Here are some pics from this fall. We've been busy, as usual... I'm almost done with my Masters in Business Informatics. Mia and S are both in 1st grade. I was laid off my job in October, but have found another, thankfully. At the same time, Baby K came (S' bio sister). The way God works is awe inspiring. Not sure how long they'll be here, but definitely until sometime next year.

A collage pic I created :)

Peace and blessings to all.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Long Season

This summer and early fall have been a long season for me. I have had "S" since May. As I wrote a couple of months ago (wow, it's been that long??) we've had a tougher transition than I hoped. She's a fine girl, just a tough transition for us all... not quite the right fit in some ways, unfortunately.

Then, this month, I lost my job. My work got sold and now I'm looking. That stresses me immensely. I'm one of those who identifies with what I do for my career and so being home is very difficult.

THEN, S' baby sister was born two days before I lost my job. So, she's with us now. I couldn't say no, because I didn't think it was fair for her to be separated from her sister. And I had made the decision when I was working that I wouldn't take Baby K because no daycare will take an infant under 6 weeks. Then I was suddenly available. The agency knows i'm not working, temporarily... and they were ok with that, oddly.

Lil M loves the baby. She calls her precious and strokes her little head. She loves holding her. She waffles on "S" just like I do... but we're making do for now.

Prayers for my job situation would be Hugely appreciated. I have one class left toward my Masters degree and really need to work. But I also think this time is good to reflect on what changes I may need to make soon.

Peace and love. Here are some pics, enjoy.

Lil M's first 5K on foot! :) She did the whole thing and then her own Fun Run!!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Compassion Fatigue

S' social worker (SW) and I talked this week about how things are going and how I'm doing, in particular. School is ramping up for the 3 of us and I'm feeling a bit stressed with that and other things that are happening this month.

I asked for the agency to provide respite for me this weekend. Which means, Lil M and I will have the weekend to ourselves until Sun. night. I'm very excited about this, actually. When I asked, I had suggested that I might even give up my placement of S. I'm not going to do that quite yet, but it is a possibility if things are even remotely like they were in the Spring.

Anyway, when she and I were talking, I said that I'm not feeling like a 'cheerful giver' right now. Meaning, since I've been fostering to 'foster' and not with an option to adopt for some time now, my motives have changed. In this situation you want to feel like you're making a difference or actually helping someone. Or why do it? Just my opinion for myself...

But I haven't felt like I've been making a difference. Oh, I know... I put a roof over their heads, feed and clothe them and give them stability... but the relationships I was hoping to build are tougher than I thought or hoped they'd be to build.

And when you don't see the relationships (because, for example, the attachment is tenuous at best) ... and you don't feel like you're making a difference ... then, all the giving with no getting back starts to feel like work. Doing it because you feel like you should not because you're getting something out of it, too.

Selfish, perhaps. But, we all need to feel loved and appreciated. And if I'm not giving as a cheerful giver, then maybe I need to figure something else out. My SW calls this "compassion fatigue". You can get tired of being the compassionate one... the one with the big heart.

I struggle with giving fostering up. I definitely struggle with saying "no" to the agency when they call (though, I did actually say no to them today). I can't take the world on my shoulders... and even though I try... it's all for not because it's really God's job and He's QUITE capable! :)

I'm keeping one placement for now, and trying to remind myself that I really *don't* have to do this. I need to figure out if I truly want to continue or if I'm doing it out of guilt or *shoulds*... I've been waffling for probably a year now as to whether or not I should continue. I'm still not sure.

Anyway, if you're a foster parent or even just a parent ... I wanted to mention this thing called Compassion Fatigue... and if it strikes a bell with you, I understand.

There's a saying... if you're the one who's always giving and you deplete your energies and no one is filling your reserves up... how are you going to be good for anyone?


Thursday, August 9, 2012


I'm struggling right now with the dating, not dating, school (masters), work, parenting and fostering.

People say I'm supposed to find a man. Why? Out of the list above, that's the hardest thing. I don't get them and they don't get me. Not in a long-term sense, anyway. And, frankly, I'm tired of trying.

The easiest is the parenting and work. Lil M is still amazing and wonderful. I have two more semesters of school left and I think I can get through that. Though, it's harder and harder... just time and effort-wise.

Fostering, that's a whole nother ballgame. My foster right now is OK and she starts school with Lil M this month. Not the same school, but both in elementary. I *might* take a teen short-term while she waits to get a dorm room at NKU... but we'll see. If she's anything like past teens, I won't do it.



On vacation in the spring

Maid of Honor (me) and the Bride


Getting beautified!!

Mama Mia!!

Flower Girl and Bride

My beautiful daughter

Us in our dresses

Is it customary to make faces while being the flower girl?!
There ya go. Pics from us being in a friend's wedding this past weekend. It was a great time... and Lil M looked gorgeous. :)


Saturday, July 14, 2012


My current foster, S, has been with us since May 22. She and Lil M are getting along ok, I guess, but it's definitely been a transition. Lil M is used to being the 'oldest' little kid in the house and now she's not. She and S are both going into the 1st grade next month. S is 6 and will be 7 in October. Lil M will be 6 next month...

They've both been doing their summer programs. Lil M is at the YMCA and S is at her school. It works out better for them to have things of their own, since they're both used to being only children. They will go to different schools in the fall and I'll need to get S registered soon. It looks like she might be with us for awhile, but I have no idea really how long. My guess is after the new year or better.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Time flies

I can't believe school's out for the summer for Lil M already (as of May 30, actually)!! And that we've already made it to June! YIKES. Half a year gone!

Last month, I took a 6YO girl foster... yes, I know... I said I was maybe going to take a break. Ha. I'm out of school for the summer and when they call(ed) me with an emergency referral, I just couldn't say no. Go figure. Who knew? ;-)

She's almost a year older than Lil M and there has, of course, been some adjustment we've not experienced before... both girls are dominant and used to being the 'oldest' of the little people. But, we're making it through. Got to come up with a good nickname for her... but let's see... she is sometimes called Mar Mar, so let's do that for now.

Mar Mar just finished Kindergarten like Lil M did. She's WAY taller and bigger than Lil M. As in, a head taller, easily, and probably 25 lbs heavier. But she's a doll and a cutie! She loves sleeping to lullabies and with her princess night light. When they're not fighting for control, she and Lil M get along quite well.

Lil M is doing great... though, she's cried more in the past 3 weeks than she has in the past 6 months, probably. I work on letting her know that she will ALWAYS be with Mommy and give her the attention she needs when Mar Mar is being difficult or when she is feeling down.

My two fosters that left, Alea and 'Mora, have two brothers... they are staying with us for respite this weekend. Apparently, 'Mora has been displaced AGAIN and might get to come back to us. We shall see. I don't know. They are asking if I'd take the younger boy with 'Mora... but that'd give me 4 kids in the house and I'm not sure about that. I think having the 3 would be ok... for the summer... the kiddos in this family might get to go home at the end of July, which would be good for me and getting back to school in August.

I'm so glad for the break in school this summer!! I only have the 3 classes left, and will take 2 in the fall and 1 in the spring. I can't take the 3rd in the fall because they only offer it in the Spring! Oh well. It's for the best for my sanity anyway!! :) I desperately needed this break. Most days, it's just me Lil M and Mar Mar... of course, we do almost always have a lot going on though!! ;-)

Lil M is loving her gymnastics still. She was bummed last night when I told her we have to wait til next Wed for her to go back to her class. I'm wondering if I should just go ahead and get her into the 2nd weekly class. We'll see.

So... one of you wrote me this week, which was SO SWEET. I didn't even know if anyone really read my blog anymore... and I will try to write more this month. I have lots to say about the happenings of this year, so, maybe I'll try to get it all down here! :)

Peace and love.

Friday, May 11, 2012


Well, it's already May!! The craziness of last semester is over and I survived. 3 more classes, and I will be finished with my Masters degree. I'm very happy about that.

Lil M and I went to see Lang Lang, a very good Chinese Pianist on May 5. She was so adorable and kissed his picture when we got our bulletins. He really is very good and we enjoyed the concert, though, Lil M was tired and wanted to go home by the time he came on! She has told me several time since then that she's Lang Lang. :D I told her she can't be Lang Lang... she's a girl. She'd have to be a boy and not wear dresses and cut her hair! She said... she could just be a boy with long hair. lol.

She's been liking counting, adding, subtracting and adding money for the past couple of months, especially. One day, she got to come to my office and write on my white board and do some math problems. She loved that. :)

She made me a very beautiful bracelet for Mother's day (gave it to me early)... with Auntie Ellen. She and Auntie Ellen have gotten to hang out a bit recently... and I know they both like that!

Here are some spring pics. :)

Rapunzel day

Easter :)

Library fun!

Mommy's white board... really, it's fun!

Lil M and Baby B

Kindergarten art show

Kindergarten art show

Maggi Moo - stylin

Easter eggs!!


Lil M and Maggi Moo in the car


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Craziness almost over...

This semester in school has just been the toughest in a LONG, LONG time... not because the material is harder... but life was just crazy. I'll admit I took too much on. Yes, write that down. ;-)

The craziness has been dying down and I've got just shy of 2 weeks left of school. Then SUMMER break!!! :) Very excited about that. IF I can pass this semester, I'll only have 3 classes left toward my Masters. Let's see...

Lil M is doing great. Maggi is doing great. All is well. :)


Sunday, April 8, 2012


I've been sick this weekend (cold, ugh), but Lil M and I had a fabulous weekend in spite of it. :) Happy Easter!! (ps. my hair isn't this red... friend did some fun effect somehow. but i like it!)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Just the two of us...

T and G are moving into an apartment as of tomorrow. I am sad to see them go, but it is necessary for T to grow up and learn how to be on her own... I love her and wish her the very best, and will always be right here for her...

The two fosters are already gone. We had a rough weekend and I had to call and have immediate removal.

As of Thursday, it'll be just me and Lil M... and Maggi. :)

I've learned a TON throughout this fostering process. I'm not sure when I will foster again, or if I will. I will continue to pray about it and see how life turns out over the next few months. It is time right now, though, for me to concentrate on a) Lil M, b) my Masters and c) ME.

Peace to all. :)

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Lil M

This one right here makes Mommy's heart Sing.



It occurred to me today that perhaps I'm trying to fit a square peg into a round hole in my life.

You see, I started fostering thinking I would eventually adopt again. But I don't see that happening. I don't 100% know that I want it to after all this. I've been trying to make someone fit into our lives, our family, when they aren't meant to. I'm not saying it couldn't happen. And to some extent, it has happened... but, really. If I'm completely honest with myself, I think maybe Lil M and I are meant to be by ourselves.

I've taken on the world, and it wasn't mine to take. Only God can do that. I can help, but if I can't figure out how to draw clearer boundaries in my life/heart, then I need to back off.

I have two fosters right now that aren't too bad. Not perfect, but not awful. Just in between somewhere. But with all the drama with T, I'm just not sure I can handle it anymore.  I don't want to hurt them, or be the cause of any issues for them. But, my health and my relationship with my daughter needs to start taking precedence.

I take too much on. I get that. Now, I've got to figure out what "balance" really means.


Sunday, February 19, 2012

How much is too much

So. T sort of went off the deep end this week. She didn't go to school. She didn't go to work. She didn't call in or anything, which means she doesn't have a job (from what I can tell). She found a new 'guy'... and has been over there since Wednesday. I'm a wreck. But, it's her life and her choice(s) to make. So, I've got to let it go.

I still have the other two girls, but have had them in respite this weekend. I need a break. I'm considering putting in notice for the first time ever. I just think I need a break for ME. I'm no good to anyone if I'm not OK.

And, I'm not feeling OK this weekend. I'm afraid I've hit my limit. :(


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Littles Gone and New Ones Come

In January the two little kids, Kayla and Chase, left to go live with their Mom (Jan 7). I hope it works out for them.

Then, I was asked to take a 16YO and her baby sister, 2YO. They came for a weekend of respite and then I decided to accept placement. I guess this is their 3rd week here with us now; they came on Jan 20.

All is reasonably calm for now. Next Tuesday we go to court to see if they will stay here for awhile longer or go live with "Daddy", a family friend.

My sister took Skippy (my male English Setter) for now, because he was stressing me out... he just wasn't happy and it was making us both unhappy. If it doesn't work out there, he'll go back to Sue's. It is unfortunate, but necessary for me. Maggi (my female Sheltie) is doing great. I've let her sleep in my room on the floor 3 nights in a row now.

School has been a challenge for me, just because of everything going on, but I'll manage. I can't wait to be finished with this degree. I really want it, but I really want it done now. lol.

Torrie started school this semester, but is thinking that she's not really ready. That's tough for me. But I'll deal. I've got to figure out how to get the state to still pay for this semester... if that's even possible at this point. :(

I really wish she wouldn't give up.


PS. I've convinced Torrie to not fully give up this semester. She's taking 4 classes, and I just dropped one for her. She should be able to do at least the 2 classes if not the 3. We're going to talk about it again tonight. Prayers welcome. :)

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


The littles, or two little kids, that I was fostering left on Jan 7. That was this past Saturday. I have no idea if I'll be able to see them ever again, and am lifting up prayers for them for sure.

Torrie started college this week. That was huge and fantastic. Lil M is glad to have Mommy back, as is Torrie, lol. I also start classes this week, too.

If I take a break (temporary or otherwise) from fostering, it is not because I'm burnt out or overwhelmed. It is mostly because I have my little family in Mia, Torrie and Gabe, and am not sure what would be a good fit for us right now. Torrie told me yesterday that she is planning on staying for awhile (perhaps even longer than a year), while she's in school and such. Prayers would be welcomed. :) We're doing well, it's not anything like that. I just hope she likes school and makes some new friends and does well. I made it my goal to help her with school... and that I plan to continue to do as much as I can.

The next thing on the list is to make sure that the state is paying for her school like they are supposed to be. I do NOT want her kicked out because the STATE didn't pay. Ugh. And they said they would... so, let's see.

Here's a pic of Lil M and Gabe from Christmas. :)


Thursday, January 5, 2012

New Year

Well, hello there, 2012! 2011, just sped on by... and here we are. :)

Let's get everything updated, shall we?

Torrie and Gabe moved back/in in September. We had a great Christmas, and T has even broken up with the 'fiance'. I'm praying that stands and she doesn't go back with him. He's not a nice guy. Gabe will be ONE this month, on the 22nd. I can't believe it's already been a year since he was born. Crazy. Torrie starts school this next week (as do I) ... and I'm pretty darn excited about that! I'm hoping to help her get through her first year... or even just this first semester, so she can feel confident on completing her degree.

Mia started Kindergarten in August, 3 days before she turned 5. She has grown a ton this fall... and I need to measure/weigh her to see how much! She definitely had a grown spurt and her hair is halfway down her back, too!

She's in Piano lessons and Gymnastics. Piano started last summer and gymnastics about this time last year. She's doing well with both. Once I got her some private gymnastics lessons she seemed to really start to get it and is doing great. :) She's also learning how to read, and can sight read words like: the, an, a, like, of, and ... and can sound out many 3 letter words. Her handwriting has really gotten better this year, too, and she likes to add numbers together.

Mia has been a great 'big' sister to the younger foster kids I've had in 2011, and now. She and Bri did well together, and when Bri gets to visit, it's a lot of fun.

I had Bri last year for about 4.5 months... she's now with her grandmother, and that's going really well. Yovonne is about my age and has really stepped up to be the parent in Bri's life. She and I are friends and I'm SO VERY thankful for that relationship! It means that I get to continue to be in Bri's life and have a new friend on top of it. :) I have a feeling she'll end up with permanent custody of Bri soon. Of which, I'm glad.

In December, noted in my last post, I took in two foster kiddos. They are 3 and 4, boy/girl respectively. They are still with us; it's been 3 weeks today. No word, yet, on when they go back to their Mom. I suspect it will be by her next hearing, Jan 26, though, it could always be sooner or later depending. Yes, they were with us for Christmas. No, she hasn't had even ONE visit (her choice) with them in 3 weeks. Makes me fairly angry, actually, but what can you do.

The Dr said they are both a little delayed (nothing school won't take care of)... and that I'm right to get them into Head Start. I'm trying to do that, but haven't been able to get them on the phone yet. I've been extremely fortunate that my friend Melissa (and Torrie, when not working) is taking care of them for now. Yovonne said she'll even watch them next week for me. So blessed. I want to give them consistency and let them stay close to home until they go to school... if I have to put them in daycare (DC), I will... but for now, I'm glad they get to be at home while I'm working.

So, yes, I do work. I work full-time still. I'm also still working on my Masters. I should *hopefully* be finished Dec of this year. :) I've just got a ton on my plate right now, I do know that. But life is good and it'll settle down sooner or later!

I'm not sure how much longer I'll foster. I might continue this year, or I might stop after the littles go home. We'll see. You know many years ago I felt that God was telling me I'd have a lot of children. I didn't know how it would turn out back then, but growing my 'family' through adoption and fostering has been a blessing in my life. Back then, I didn't intend to foster. Although, soon after that, I did realize that adoption was definitely a possibility.

I've officially had 5 foster kids now. Torrie, Bri, Brit, Kayla and Chase (my only boy, not my nephew). 6 children total, with Mia, of course. I pray that God always stays right with each of them and helps them live fulfilling lives. And, if I get to be in their lives (the fosters), then that would be completely awesome, too. If not, I know that God will take care of them for me. :)

Peace and blessings for this new year.