Thursday, December 24, 2009
I have a household of sick children and a husband with the flu. It's been this way for 6 days. 3 Days ago, Zachary decided to start climbing out of his crib- at nape time yesterday, I carried him back 16 times before he fell asleep. Now, I feel the heavy mucus settling into MY chest. And, it's Christmas Eve. :(
Despite all of this... I am determined to get up from this computer and make then make some cookies for Santa with Lydia.
Friday, November 13, 2009
By accident I ended up getting the phone number of the man who is over foster care and adoption in the state of TN. I explained my situation and our story. He was very nice, and very professional. he acted distraught to hear of all that we went through and that we will never foster again due to the actions, or lack there of, of DCS. He gave me phone number after phone number of people involved in the case and encouraged me to call, and at the end of this call I actually felt a glimpse of gratitude and remorse from the Department's perspective. Well, as you can probably imagine, that was short lived.
I did as he told me to do. I started with Satan's supervisor, *Shit for Brains. So I called *SFB and started explaining who I was and why I was calling. It only went south from there. It went something like this...
Me: Hi SFB, My name is Katie **** and I am calling b/c we just found out that our daughter's biological brother is in foster care and has been in custody for almost all of his life. He is now 17 months old and we have never once received a call asking for placement, or even a visit. We would like to get to the bottom of this for HER sake.
SFB: Oh, well, Mrs. ****, you do realize that our job is to REUNITE families correct?
(It was clear that she knew exactly who I was... B/C, well, in their dilusional world, if you advocate for the foster children in your home, then of course you are simply trying to steal children out of foster care and adopt them for yourself. Haaaaa. That's why we sent several other babies to other oster homes, and declined a few referrals.) Haaaa again!
Me: Yes, I understand reunification, that is not the point. The point is that this child has been in custody for over a year and a half and never once was given the opportunity to meet her BIOLOGICAL baby brother.
SFB: Well, this child is going home (in a very snotty voice.) This mother has worked her plan. And THIS (as if we kidnapped Lydia from under their eyes) will be going HOME!
Me: GOOD! That is GREAT news for him and for C. That means C is doing well and working her plan. But that is not my point. I want some answers as to why we were never contacted and my daughter has not been able to see her brother.
Me and SFB - Got at it bantering back and forth. She can't seem to understand simple
SFB: Mam, I don't have answers for you. I will have to get back to you.
Me: Of course you don't. GOOD. I will look forward to hearing back from you shortly.
SFB: Uhhh, Uhhhh, well it won't be today. I have other children and emergency situations to deal with.
Me: Of course you do SFB. Goodbye.
Do you think I have heard a word since then?? Hell NO.
So, I call back the "professional, caring, director" I spoke with the first time and was completely dismissed. He assured me he would call me back first thing in the morning. Haaaaa.
Well, I suppose we should cut them all a little break. I am confident SFB has some kind of associates degree in...ummm. probably how to sharpen pencils. Mr. Professional might have a real live college degree giving his ranking in the system. My guess is that is is something like a bachelor's degree in cosmotology.
Who knows... But this I do know... I am not a dentist or a lawyer, or a teacher and I would never be allowed to practice as one without the proper education and lisence. So why do these yahoo's get to "play" SOCIAL WORKER in MY FIELD (that I spent TONS OF MONEY AND TIME to achieve) only to F up REAL PEOPLE'S LIVES??
I don't get it. It hurts my heart.
What to do next? I don't know. Perhaps several of us should ban together from state to state and tell our stories?! Maybe we should all work together to CHANGE things.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
I am LIVID. ABSOLUTELY LIVID!!! Oh, and guess who the caseworker is... YEP.. you guessed it...SATAN WOMAN from hell. The worker that would have given her right arm to have Lydia taken from us.
I WILL get to the very bottom of this. I am beyond LIVID. I will never stop advocating for children, especially my own. What the hell does that woman NOT UNDERSTAND about that? Did she not learn anything about us during our 3 years at war? We will fight for each and every last right for our daughter. We did as her foste parents and we we will now and forever as her adoptive parents!
More later... I am waaaay too angry!!
P.S. I stole "Satan" from Snarky Mom. I couldn't help it. I think we both had the same caseworker. Is that possible?
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
I am reading this book.
My friends, Stacy and Annie recommended it to me. It is freaking hysterical. It is so wrong on so many levels, but you just can't help but laugh. It's like a bad wreck you just can't take your eyes off of. You know it's wrong, but my gawd, you just HAVE TO watch, or laugh in my case. So, I highly recommend it if you aren't easily offended.
AND This BOY...
Is talking up a storm.
- Byeeeeee Yidia
- Hiiiiiii Yidia
- Stop that!
- And absolutely anything else he wants to say if he is in the mood. The VERY best though... He counts to FIVE, and will sing the ABC's. I HAVE to get it on video. It's too GREAT!
We made a very quick trip to PURDUE this weekend to see the Northwestern/Purdue game. Ughhh, it was agony watching the Boilers turn over the ball and miss opportunity after opportunity. The kids were awesome though (even though the game was FREEZING) and had a lot of fun playing with the other kids, Megan and Owen. We stayed with some of Seth's best friends and were also able to see several others. All in all it was a fun weekend minus the final score, but my camera really didn't make it out much while we were there. And I am BUMMED we didn't get to see the Taylor's. Oh well... Next time.
We have a weekend at home this weekend - No football games to attend. Yaaaa. We love football, but it's been a busy fall so far and our teams are crappy. We really need to get some projects done around the house. Hopefully we will.
I am now trying my best to keep up with two blogs. I will continue to post the present on this blog and my private blog will always hold our past. That's not to say that I won't share stories from our past or need to vent about some of the craziness of it all from time to time here, because I know I will.
Ohhh, one more thing. We are hosting a Halloween Costume Party in a few weeks and have yet to decide on costumes. We really like to make a big deal of it... any suggestions?
Friday, September 25, 2009
10 Granny Smith Apples
1/2 C. Sugar
1/2 C. Margarine-melted
9 Oz. Yellow Cake Mix
1 t. Cinnamon
Place peeled, cored and sliced apples in a greased 8x12 inch pan.
Combine sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over the apples.
Top with dry cake mix, then drizzle the butter over the top.
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
-Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and warm caramel sauce.
I wish I had a picture but I don't. It is soooo YUM though! If you happen to try it, I hope you enjoy!
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Work is kicking my butt. I picked up another day in the district and now I only have Fridays off. I am conflicted about all of this but all in all, it's ok.
Football season is not going well at all, but we are enjoying it nonetheless. Seth and I went to Oregon to the Purdue Vs. Oregon game. The outcome was unpleasant, but the trip was lots of fun. The kids stayed with Grandma and Grandpa, so it was a vacay for them as well (and I don't mean for my mom and dad). haaa.
Vandy is playing but not winning. If you like football you know what I mean.
Zachary is talking up a storm now, but only on his terms. He has to be the cutest little boy in the world though. At least he is to his momma.
Lydia is all about getting her nails and toenails painted, but not by me. It has to be from the little girly salon Sweet and Sassy. It's a totally CUTE place and she has been talking about it forever. Well, we have had a couple weeks of her getting out of bed and coming in to our room over and over in the middle of the night. That makes for crabby parents so I came up with an idea.
She has a bedtime chart with VERY special princess stickers she can use IF she stays in bed all night. Haaaaa. It has worked like a charm. I told her if she gets 5 stickers in a row, (meaning staying in bed 5 nights in a row) I would take her to Sweet and Sassy to get her nails done. As you can see, she's 3 for 3. Yaaaaa Lydi!
I let her place her stickers herself so there is not much rhyme or reason, but it's working so HEY...
She was getting up so frequently that this became a learned behavior, almost like a habit. I am hoping this will break this habit and once the fingernails are painted, we can move on and get back to a normal night time routine without all the FLUFF!
Seth celebrated a BIRTHDAY on the 14th. It was low key, but the kids LOVE birthdays so we tried to make big deal about it. We had just gotten home from Oregon the night before and I had to work all day the next day. So, GiGi's Cupcakes it was... Oh, they are to DIE FOR! I can't believe I didn't get pics of the actual cupcakes! HAPPY BIRTHDAY DADDY!
Here are a few pictures of our lives lately. Enjoy...Glad to be back!
Lydia hanging with the Vanderbilt Cheerleaders! Fun Times with my friend Annie
I love this Baby more than life itself!
He tried so hard to hang in there at the game...
And he's OUT!Lydia started back to dance!! Of course she LOVES IT!
LIFE IS GOOD!
I think I finally figured it out. After a lot of thought and soul searching, I have realized why I am not sitting down and blogging.
I changed my blog from a private, password restricted blog to this very public, "hello world here we are blog" because I wanted to help others. My nightmare was over and I now had all this information, and experience and knowledge and I knew I needed to do something with it. I knew that I wanted other potential adoptive and foster parents to know what we knew. I would have given my right arm to have this knowledge under my belt when we were battling the courts, and navigating through international and domestic adoption, not to mention infertility. A lot of heart ache and aggravation can be saved if you are educated on these areas. And I am here to tell you, it is not easy to come by, especially if you are in the thick of your own experiences.
So, I came here as a platform of information and experience, hoping to reach out and advocate. But, in this process I realized I am not ready to do this. It's not that I am not ready to share and help others. I am just not ready to sit down and relive it all yet. The stories and experience are still to raw. I still have nightmares of Lydia being taken away, and Zac being left in the hospital. It was too much to sit down and dig it all back up. I would leave the computer exhausted and therefore, I would just avoid it all together.
I was also completely conflicted with putting The Bug's story out there for the world to dissect. Sure, Seth and I went through hell and back and yes, I want to help others...BUT, this is Lydia's story too and I am not sure that it is fair of me to share HER story, at least not so publicly.
And then I feel bad because, how do I help others but not tell my story. Well, I have thought about that too. I am going to renew my former private blog. Our story was documented from day one. If you are a follower and I have gotten to know you...email me. I will send you the link and the password.
But as for THIS blog...I want to keep it in the HERE and NOW. I want to rejoice my kids and tell funny stories and also share my frustrations as a mom, wife and so on. This is our life now and I just want it to be light and fun.
I hope you all understand that I am STILL HERE if you have questions or know someone else who does. It is still very important to me to help. Foster and adoptive parents will always take a back seat to birth parents, but they still have rights, and everyone should know that.
Peace Out... You will be seeing me much more regularly now. Yaaaaa!
Saturday, September 5, 2009
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
So now I have to figure out how to tell Lydia the bad news.
DEEP BREATH...HERE GOES...
Mommy: "Lydia I have some sad news sweetie."
Lydia: "Oh you do mommy? Can I watch a movie?"
M: "Maybe, but I need to tell you something."
L: "You have a surprise for me mommy?"
M: -Trying not to laugh- "No honey, Annie died."
L: "Annie died mommy? I don't want her to die."
M: "Me either sweetie, I am so sorry."
L: "Well, let's go see her. Can we go see her mommy"
Hmmmm, how do I handle this... Well, ok...she can see her and say good-bye I guess.
-Now we are standing in front of Annie's cage...
L: "Oh mommy, Annie died."
M: "Yes, she did Bug. It's very sad and I am sorry your guinea pig died."
L: "I am so sorry you died Annie. I miss you. Mommy, can you wake her up now so I can play with her?"
Huh??? Oh yeah, she's 3!!!
I explained that she went to live in heaven with Lucky, our Maltese that was hit by a car last year. It seems that was all she needed b/c she rsponded with,"Oh yes, mommy, now Annie is living with Lucky and God in heaven in the fluffy white clouds." "Yes, she sure is Lydia."
Annie hasn't been brought up since. If only life stayed THIS innocent!
Rest in peace Annie.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
For now I will just catch you up. We have been doing A LOT OF THIS...
We have also been hanging out with friends and wrapping up summer. I also started back to work which has been interesting thus far. I did have a very weak moment one afternoon and bought Lydia a guinea pig. Sh named her Annie which is very cute. The little pig is cute too but OMG, I never in a million years thought I would EVER have a rodent in my house. When the novelty dies down I think she will be making a trip to one of my classrooms. hehe.
I am off to get dinner started and am thinking I will start coming around more often now.
First though, here is The Bug with her Annie...
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Well, we have had our share of illness and mishaps lately, so that is to blame as well. Sorry for my absence. I say that as if anyone cares... haha. I WILL return soon with some more of Lydia's adoption story. I really want to finish it up. I want to finish Zac's too, but OH LORD, that may take a while. Everyone I know says I should write a book. But my story doesn't even do the real life justice. I wouldn't know where to start.
Anyhow, summer is wrapping up around here. I am back at work - must get to bed - have an early meeting.
Friday, July 24, 2009
The Back of my dress
Haaaa, it's a long story... But I am here to tell you that Las Vegas in May with no A/C is damn HOT!
I thought I would throw this one in just b/c I like it!
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
A Daddy and his Daughter...
My Happy Happy Bug
Seth's DREAM. He's sooo Happy!
Lydia was jumping in over and over. She LOVES the water - Thanks to Swim America lessons!!
It was an unusally COOL weekend in July. We had to bundle up!
Enough is Enough. We weren't in the car 5 minutes on the way back to the lake house and she was OUT!
MOre FUN in The SUN to COME!!!
- Next though is A LOT more of Lydia's adoption story. I need to try to finish it up and get on to Bam's. He's is CRAZY TOO!!
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
I try to keep my days jam packed with activities, as you have seen from all the pictures, all the way up until bed time. We all function better that way. At least Lydia and I do. I should have listened when everyone told me that 3 is harder than 2. Furthermore, she has given up naps and also come to our, ahem, I mean, MY bed several times a night. I am not the best sleeper. I used to be, but I'm not anymore. So once she comes in and wakes me up, I'm done. I can bet I will be awake for another couple hours trying to go back to sleep.
Here's another funny thing. Isn't it crazy how life always looks so perfect in pictures?! I mean, I browse around to other blogs and get pictures sent online from friends and I often think to myself, "man, her/their life if perfect." That's a completely distorted thought. I know that know now and I know that when I am in the moment, but I can't help but go there. I am sure that my life looks perfect in pictures too. Who goes running for their camera when they are so angry at their 3 year old for hitting her baby brother for the second time in the last ten minutes? NOT ME! And we're certainly not zooming and shooting when we're sweaty, frustrated and trying to console or discipline our children. At least in my house, the only reason the camera pops out is when we're happy - when we are ALL simultaneously happy. And ummm, truth be told, that just doesn't happen all that often.
Don't get me wrong WE ARE A HAPPY FAMILY!! We love and trust and pray and play and we have a GREAT LIFE, we really do. We laugh A LOT! We are truly blessed in the whole sense of the word. We both have awesome jobs, we are HEALTHY, we have the things we need to survive and then some, and then a TON! God has been SO GOOD to us!
So why do I get these summer blues? I find myself feeling sooo guilty. I have a recording inside my head that tells me "how awful and guilt ridden I should feel for ever being sad, or frustrated or anxiety ridden. I start to tell myself what a terrible person I am for having these feelings after all HE has blessed us with - Answered prayers, and I AM STILL NOT HAPPY? What gives? I must just be an awful person!" And that is when the trouble starts.
Yep, this is the recording I have. We all have recordings. Some are distorted and some are not. It's the thoughts that were ingrained in us at such a young age. It's the new thoughts that start as we begin to gain Independence and learn earn our sense of self. And then the ones that come with parenthood. I swear no matter how great a parent you are, I don't know that any of us escape the recordings. "Shit, I blew that.", "Did I handle that right?", "I really shouldn't have lost my patience.", "Oh hell, I sound just like my mother!" Haha. Am I the only?
What are your recordings?
Ok, I am taking off my therapist hat now. Although. I think I quite needed that session with myself.
And here are just a few pics of me and my Fam, keeping it real!
Yep, I am wearing HOT PINK shorts and a Turquoise tee shirt. I had to ditch my khaki -too tight Capri's(b/c all I have done is eaten and drank beer all summer) the minute I walked in the door. Boy, that makes you feel good about yourself! Haha.
And, here's Baby Bam - crying tonight at bedtime when I REALLY, REALLY just NEED for him to go bed.
Notice, the chewed up crib rails. Yes, just another piece of my very imperfect life!
Oh, and since we're talking about how GREAT I feel about myself, here's my dinner tonight after the kids finally got to bed. Holy Hell...Oh Well.
P.S. I use spell check EVERYTIME I post.
Ok, Good Night.
Sunday, July 12, 2009
As soon as we got home this afternoon it started pouring! Seth got half of the lawn mowed and I got my car cleaned out. My flowers are doing GREAT!!! :) Pictures to come - headed to bed.
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Daddy and Baby Bam in the pool...
Lydia jumping in for the 100th time!
Picnic at the pool.
Whew...Ben throwing Lydia. She LOVED THIS!!
Shannon and Lydia swimming!
That's my little cheerleader!
Saturday morning we went to our neighborhood 4th of July parade where everyone decorates their wagons, strollers, bikes etc. and follows the fire engine. Lydi and Seth decorated our wagon.The kids loved it, but the sun was bright and it was hot!
They are in there somewhere...haha.
Zac's ready for the pool!
We headed back to the pool after that
After the pool we were off to a neighbor's house for a FUN cook out and small fireworks. I forgot my camera though. And then of course we went out for the REAL fireworks. I love fireworks! My photography skills (or lack thereof) did them no justice though!
My sweet Zachy waiting with Grandma to watch!
He was amazed and never took his eyes off of them!
Lydia liked them too but thought they were loud!
All the kids watching...
On Sunday we were invited to another swim party at some of our other friends home. Lydia had so much FUN swimming with her friends, Marlie and Macy. Sorry, I forgot my camera AGAIN, *sigh*!
This week has been a little nuts as we were seriously considering making an offer on a house just a couple streets away from us. It was stressful and in the end we just couldn't get the numbers to work - bummer. I guess we (ahem, I) just have the itch to buy something because we have been searching boats on Craigslist and Ebay like crazy the last couple days. Now, I MUST have a boat! Haha. I guess we'll see.
Here's a few more, just b/c my little Bam is so stinking CUTE these days. He LOVES stuffed animals and dolls and he loves to push things around. He figured this out and it was the best of both worlds...
And... I had to modify my post after looking at it. Seth thinks this outfit that Zachary is wearing is awful! He said he was too old for it and he think it looks "gay". Of course the term "gay" to US does not at all have a judgement attached to it or mean anything about sexuality (in this situation). Some of our very best friends and relatives are gay, and after all... if you read my "about me" you would see that I am very liberal and think all should be accepted just as they are... ANYHOW... back to the outfit... I have to ask you women and blogger friends... Is this outfit too young for my 16 month old? OR...Does it look Gay? And when you answer, think of the term "GAY" as in... completely southern momma dressing her kid in the way too preppy polo romper, trying to make her boy look like a little girl "GAY". Lord, I hope not, but I have to admit, it did cross my mind. We are so sweat pants and sweat shirts... Just ask my Gay Boys... hehe.
YES or No? Help.