Friday, July 29, 2011

broken family broken hearts...

for an hour or so today we seriously considered bringing brother bear into our home...

"failed" placement


prayed hard, looked into buying a minivan...

even called the case worker and said we were thinking about it

couldn't do it

bee reminded us how important it is for him to have his own room by having a gianormous fit... over something unrelated...

to bring in big brother would break our #1 rule. bee gets his own room, a sanctuary. if we had a room i think it would have happened.

my heart is breaking...

praying he gets a placement in our county... a family who will work with us for visitation (current family seems overloaded w/ special needs etc)

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

in t-r-o-u-b-l-e

i said i would post why we are "in trouble"... it's not the oh no TROUBLE trouble, but the we love the kids so much i already miss them and want to cry a little kind of trouble.

it'll be a month this coming saturday since they've moved in.

they "fit"... she lights up when she sees me or chef hubby. bee is heads over heals in love with his new baby "brover". he wants to hold him and help feed him. i love snuggling w/ baby bear and he is starting to coo and smile... sweet sights and sound from such a little guy

don't get me wrong it's not all moonlight and roses, she tantrums at nap time... ripped a hole in the bed tent one time (fixed). she jumps off of everything... and likes to wake up right as baby bear is finishing his early morning feeding and drifting off to sleep... refusing to nap ugh ugh ugh... likes to tell us no, throws food everywhere...a typical almost 2 yr old learning boundaries...

but she fits us... they don't feel like relatives visiting... (i try to imagine our foster kids as family visiting... gives the close feeling and bonding but when they leave not the same bone numbing shock as if you lost your child) they feel like they belong here. when brother bear came, i felt like telling the cw, we'll take him - go pack up his stuff... we'll find a spot!

so... like i said we are in trouble... but good... we will keep loving on them hard... and we have faith, friends and family who will help put as back together and pull us back together when they leave...


bears go on a picnic (aka visitation)

the sweet quiet of the house with only bee in it...

the sting of guilt for splitting up a sibling set.

miss k came to pick up the bears to go visit w/ daddy... and had brother bear with her. he's so cute. so sweet... reminding myself he was on best behavior.

he lit up when he saw his sibs.

he must miss them.

when i spoke w/ the cw yesterday about getting the kids together she said the other foster family said he doesn't talk about them - so he must not miss them. UGH. seriously?!?!?... maybe it's too hard for him to talk about his family he has been torn from.

she saw today how much he loves his sibs first hand in our house today. i reminded her that i will do whatever we can to get the kids together. that if someone else gets him to our house we can do a playdate. we will even do respite IF he can sleep in the same room w/ momma bear.

it sounds like brother bear's foster folk have alot on their plate (will not mention here - but very valid overload stuff)... not as interested in setting up time for the kids. cw did admit that it is the policy to be sure the kids get together...

she asked us w/ a very confused look on our face - why didn't you take all of them???? i said it was hard, but we know our limitations. we would then have FOUR KIDS - infant, toddler, 4 yr old and 5 yr old. ummm.... also - we don't put foster kids in our bio son's room so that he can have a sanctuary (esp when kids LEAVE). oh yeah... and our car is FULL. we literally cannot put another child in the car. i have a feeling if we had a minivan right now we would be discussing it seriously. hubby and i are already talking about if they became adoptable... which is another rule we've broken.... mentioning the A word... that we would pray and seriously consider bringing in big bro.

Monday, July 25, 2011

blunt reminder

no matter how much we love these little bears....

they are NOT OURS

we've been playing and goofing around, taking trips going to disney... having people tell us how cute our kids are..

got a call tonight that they will go to visit dad tomorrow.

details that are bubbling in my chest that i can't divulge...

i hope and pray they are able to be reunified. but i feel my prayers are half-hearted.

hoping tomorrow goes well... hoping the little bears get to see brother bear... hoping that a GAL (guardian ad litem) gets appointed that will push for sibling visits more often.

what is especially hard is that our little bee is heads over heels in love with baby bear... constantly tells us how much he loves him and that "he says big brover and hi to me"...

praying for strength, guidance, and a good visit

246 - 265 thankful

246. family tradition - timeshare sharing in Sebastian

247. offers for a free replacement brown dog... and a promise they will hold onto it if needed once he was found

248. new case worker... Miss K, seems much more relaxed than mr. e was... very chill about us taking the bears to sebastian or wherever else ins tate

249. surprises for my big boy

250. tickets to NKOTBSB concert... recieved for my birthday

251. relatives who work for disney! (free admission baby!)

252. hubby who can handle 2 under 2 on his own for 2 days!

253. sister to drive me and bee to the train

254. train tickets being cheaper than driving to orlando and back!

255. excitement of bee for his first train ride

256. fire fighter friends

257. daycare recently opening an infant room (whew!)

258. screened in babyseat

259. family lovin' on my bears

260. chance for my soccer lovin' hubby to watch women's world cup w/ a girl of his own (for now)

261. my son becoming more comfortable in the water

262. fun parks

263. science exploration

264. carousels

265. old friends walking down memory lane

Sunday, July 17, 2011

the lost is found

ahhhh.... all is well... at least on the brown dog side of things....  this sucker is never leaving the house again... love that boy  --- love that smile!

Friday, July 15, 2011

feeling failure in the little things

i know i'm a good momma...

but sometimes it takes something small to make you feel like a complete failure.

my son bee has a little stuffed dog... imaginatively named brown dog...

here's brown dog hitching a ride recently (so glad i snapped this shot)

well... brown dog has gone seriously missing... as in i was a schmo and let bee take him to the family time share in sebastian

**1st rule broken - let the durn dog leave the house!

i even ignored the little voice that said "hey! don't let that thing out of the house" but i figured i was being over-protective... sigh

then momma bear kept messing w/ it when we were at the time share and i fussed at bee to put it away in a safe place.

at one point my boy cousins were taking out the garbage and i thought... i should stop them and look through the garbage - sigh...

i have a sneaking suspension momma bear may have thrown in in the garbage and it is long gone... it breaks my heart

i know it's just a stupid stuffed dog, but it's his baby... when he is upset it's what comforts him...

when bubba left, when baby frog died... he cried and cuddled w/ brown dog...

i feel like i've failed him, i can't stop thinking about it... doubt i will get any sleep tonight - the family is packing up the time share tomorrow and if it will be found - that is when. i'm actually nauseaus

i've looked it up on the internet - $95... can't do that... don't know if i want to buy/get a replacement anyway - part of me does b/c of how much bee loves brown dog, but don't know what that teaches him about keeping track of belongings and/or what it teaches about "replacing" what we love by buying things

praying he is found...

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

the christian working mom

i love stay at home moms...

most of my friends are stay at home moms and i have never recieved judgement from them... so this is not a commentary on those who KNOW me

but sometimes i feel (maybe imagine) judgement from others... especially as a christian mom
my first choice would be to stay at home

GOD laughs at our plans

i am a teacher so i work full time (though some would disagree...) i do get unpaid vacation time - 2 mo's out of the year - more than most can ask for...

being a christ-follower... knowing my obligation to bee to raise him as a christ-following man-of-GOD makes it hard to face our financial reality

i don't work so that i can be driving nice cars (we both drive older than 10 year cars), wear fine fashion (most of my clothes are clearance items or consignment), or go on fabulous vacations (big trip this year is to sebastian fla - a short drive for us)

my job takes care of frivolities like food, shelter, health insurance etc.

my hubby and i are both teachers in fla... not known for great pay... but (for now) benefits are fairly good. we have health insurance that we wouldn't have if i stayed home (we get FREE health insurance for our fam since we both work for the same county)

as a christian working mom it's rough. i would love to home school, i would love to be with my kids all day - especially at bee's age when i feel like i could pour so much more into him and help him be the man he is meant to be.

i do experience guilt. my fav bloggers are stay-at-home or work-at-home mommas. i love ann voskamp and reading her homeschooling tips is always a sharp tug... if only...

i struggled for a short while about if i should be working as a christian mom, but knowing that the majority of moderate income women around the world and throughout history have had incomes to assist in supporting their families has helped... also - there are no direct commands of CHRIST saying "thou shalt stay at home at all costs". even the proverbs 31 woman brought in an income.

it's a struggle to be content in what HE has given and what HE has ordained...

Monday, July 11, 2011


226. a baby in our house - a real baby!

227. buying barrettes
228. snuggly baby time

229. hugs from momma bear

230. a crib tent to keep her safe at bed and naptime

231. a swing to rock baby bear to sleep

232. a swaddle-me swaddler to get him to stay asleep in the crib

233. my big boy helper

234. keeping a tradition - 4th w/ friends - even in the midst of all our blessings

235. sleep

236. ruffled socks

237. support from our church---when (on facebook wall post convo) i said i didn't want to overwhelm the church by having them do meals -- just been 2 mo's since they last did it! - a friend made this comment: OVERWHELM us M****!!! It is a privilege to serve Him by serving you!!! ok - y'all i know i didn't give birth - but i felt like a hormonal postpartum momma at the moment when i read that - and just about lost it! LOVE my people who get it

238. having friends who get it

239. a husband who has summer's off

240. a husband who is a hands on daddy.

241. hairy baby ears... i have a weak spot for hairy ears... the kind you only see on new babies... never thought i would have a baby in our house that young again

242. pigtails... cute lil' blonde pigtails...

243. sit n' spin i jacked from our neighbors garbage...

244. bubbles
245. unisex handme downs (red and white oshkosh overalls in specific)

Sunday, July 10, 2011


i love my hubby, he is a true hands on daddy

he works hard and takes on his 50% + of the kid work

but for some reason, other men seem to think he is lazing around on his duff free of any responsibilities

two different times (in my presence) he's been asked how he enjoys having time off to relax.

today he was asked this as he was holding baby bear in the carrier and helping me out w/ covering momma bear

i wonder how stay-at-home dad's deal w/ it? i remember how it felt as a stay-at-home mom... the idea that i sat around eating bon-bons all day

newborns are tons of work - a newborn and a toddler is ridiculously large amounts of work --- hubby and i are constantly busy and it's two of us!

there's the double whammy that since we are teachers people think we truly are doing nothing all summer... in truth it's when we try to get all the things done that we put off all year, and try to regain strength to face the next school year.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

routine, routine, routine

the secret to all successful parenting...


even in the crazy world of foster parenting... and in this case i'm referring to bee's routine.

our bio son (now 5 years old)

one of the top questions we get is "how is he handling it?"

we spent over a year talking about the idea of foster care and a good 6 mo's intensely prepping him for kids coming and going)

he gets it...

but the day to day handling of the whole deal is just as important as the explaining the comings and goings...

we have a routine.

he likes to help feed babies, totally cool

we do mealtime devotionals no matter what (even if i'm holding a screaming toddler --- or feeding her, even though family rule is everyone finishes and waits for devos)

whenever a foster kiddie is in the bath - that's bee's assigned wii time (insures he gets to do it w/ out being messed w/ - AND he is engrossed just in case it's a single parent night and whoever is home has to be focused on someone else)

we don't ditch big plans (4th of july w/ friends, church lunch time, playgroup) --- we need to keep his routine somewhat normal...

also his room is sacrisanct... no foster-kiddies allowed... we tell him (and them) it's b/c the legos aren't safe... but also - it gives him sanctuary...

he gets bedtime story and 5 minutes of momma snuggle time everynight

we do occasional movie nights after foster kiddies are to bed...

important for him to feel secure and loved and "special" w/o obviously excluding the other kids...

delicate, but important balance~

Monday, July 4, 2011

the art of juggling

have you ever watched someone juggling?

the thought that oh crap, they'll drop something... especially when they bring out the fragile items or really heavy stuff...

have you ever tried juggling... i mean seriously tried - given it more than the 10 - 15 minute attempt?

me neither... i don't like dropping things...

so... 3 kids - two people - each w/ 2 hands - SHOULD have a hand left over... nope - LOTS of juggling going on in this house right now

GOD in his providence knew we couldn't have handled this last year... i keep thanking him for making us wait...

we LOVE baby bear and momma bear (we're hooked on these kids in a big way - post to follow on thought on that!)

but it is HARD... not the same hard we had w/ bubba... who liked to throw monster fits, and anything he could set his hands on. he was into everything, except us.

momma bear is infatuated w/ chef hubby (and the feeling is def, mutual) and she likes to be my shadow... this is no big deal...

i dreamed of having another baby in my life... and this little guy (6 weeks old y'all) is more than i dared to dream of. i have a baby again. sweet, snuggly, fall asleep on you baby.

but i also have an active 20 month old to chase... and a 5 year old who would occasionally like some attention.

ok - sis - if you are reading this stop now... diaper and toilet talk ahead!

i was telling a friend tonight that sometimes i feel like all i do is change poopie diapers.

i TOTALLY forgot how much newborns poop. oh my lanta!

he sleeps, when he wakes up - we change him (super wet usually) then bottle... then half way through bottle that awful noise i had forgotten.... the newborn liquid gurgling pooing sound... ugh.

and the smell... he is on formula (um... yeah - before any random finder of this blog forgets - THEY ARE FOSTER KIDS ---- NO BREASTFEEDING THEM!) and blech - the stink of formula poops...

i recently found myself going to the bathroom, while changing a diaper, and having hubbie knock on door to pass me the next one... at someone else's house


i have gone two or three days (and they have only been here four) and realized at the end of the day i've only eaten 2 meals.... a late breakfast and dinner.

i'm sure we'll hit the groove eventually... but praying it comes soon. hoping to enjoy some of the summer i have left (less than a month!)

the sick part of this... as tired as i am... i love it... <3


203. vbs at my mom's church --- something to keep bee busy while bubba left

204. 3 hours to myself

205. my own "private" beach

206. time alone to process that he is gone - not even 24 hours afte he had left... but gone

207. just enough other people to fell alone on this stretch of sand, but not creepy alone

208. a small grey shell, my new worry stone - a gift from him

209. the wave from bubba - a small perfect gift from our case worker gave me

210.bowling on the first day of summer, the day he left

211. the silly videos that played after each gutter ball

212. the fact that bee loved the videos more than trying to hit pins down

213. starbucks with a friend and a bit of baby love - the balm for a hurting heart

214. my sweet sensitive bee --- putting his head to my chest and saying he could hear my heart crying

215 a new family tradition

216. how the moon is out even in midmorning

217. the moon that reflects the sun... may i be a moon who reflects the light of the SON (inspired by this book)

218. watching a class of paddleboarders... idea for the future

219. a reminder there is a future and happier days to come

220. rocking chair on our front porch

221. rain

222. sweater and hot tea --- yes even in the summer in south fla!

223. old plastic slide  and the memories made there

224. painted toes

225. new bike for our FIVE year old

Saturday, July 2, 2011

happy belated birthday bee

 truth is - i typed this ahead of time and meant to do autopost...
2 reasons -

1. we will be celebrating the marriage of hubby's youngest (of 6) siblings

2. the biggest reason - i can't think about the birthday on the birthday

a while ago, i took a survey and did an interview for survivors of pph and hysterectomies... it came back i was at risk for PTSD.

i think i am just really honest

most days are good... and this year i'm hoping bee's bday will be even better than most

BUT... i will not get any alone time - i will be w/ family. very in-your-face- stressed-out and (unfortunatly) drama ridden family.

i do not get along w/ one of my hubbies sisters. i've blogged about our fractured relationship before.

i am a bit more raw on my son's bday.

the day after even more.

the day i almost died.

it seems surreal to type and honestly sometimes i feel like i'm being my usual dramatic self.

but 20 units of blood... not so much the drama.

i have actually re-looked at the paperwork before to be sure i wasn't over-blowing the numbers.

i have had well-meaning people in the past BLOW IT OFF as me being selfish (that i don't like to celebrate his birthday ON his birthday - trust me we go all out before and after)

i think i've said it before - but you find out who is and isn't your real friends in the midst of trauma/tragedy.

it is a tad selfish.

i try.

what truly sucks is i LOVE this scene from Gilmore Girls - i want to do this w/ my child. but to relive the hours leading up to his birth and just after are too hard.

my hubby mentioned it one time... ooo.. .this is what was happening - and it was if i was hit with ice water - and it was the good stuff - not the bad.

but to think... ooo this is when we were leaving for the hospital, or ooo this is when he was being born... is to lead me to oooo... this is when they tried to send chef hubby home saying all was fine, or oooo... this is when the realized something was wrong... or esp the next day - this is when i woke up to a new reality...

so. even though i have typed this a week before - if you are reading it on or close to JUNE 25... say an extra prayer for me.

it still hurts