Thursday, May 28, 2015

Warning: Insane woman ahead

I may be losing my mind.  I feel like I have so much internal energy going on that I'm going to make random things spontaneously combust. I'm restless, I can't focus, I can't sleep, I can't turn my brain off, I'm eating constantly,!!!!!

Yesterday was the committee meeting day where my agency meets and discusses potential foster parents and approves or doesn't approve them.  We weren't involved in the meeting, we just had to hope our case worker that we've dealt with, had classes and interviews with, likes us enough to really vouch for us.  I don't know what time the meeting was yesterday, but all day I had this restless energy waiting, waiting, waiting for a call and never got one.  I know those meetings are farther away and encompass several agency offices, so I was possibly expecting her to not have time to call yesterday, but TODAY, however!  I fully expect a call any second, but even that I don't know for sure.  I never officially confirmed with her that she'd call to report the results of the meeting to us, but I just assumed she would.  I mean, why wouldn't she, right?

A minute ago the phone rang with a number I didn't recognize, I grabbed the phone, ran to the other room to hubby with my eyes open really wide and flailing my arms like a mad woman, quickly answered it and put it on speakerphone fully expecting it to be the social worker  Doctor's office confirming an appointment.  (I have the CW's office number saved, but I don't have her cell phone number saved, so I thought she might be calling from that.)

So my heart is trying to return to normal, though it hasn't been "normal" for over 24 hours now.  Please, please, PLEASE call sooooon!  I can't stand this!

**Update, she did call around noon but not about the meeting.  She called to change the time of our next class because of a conflict came up.  After we rescheduled the time I said "So, did everything work out ok yesterday?"  She said "oh, yeah, everything's fine."  Inside my head I'm going "AAAAAND????"  LOL  Basically, they're still waiting for one clearance to come back and everything should be ok and approved but I guess they can't use the word "approved" until everything is finalized.  How frustrating!  So, everything is looking good and moving forward and I just have to keep being patient..........

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

All the good stuff in one spot

For months I've been scouring blogs and pinterest to find tips, hear stories, anything to help me plan for this journey.  It's also helped me kill time when I feel the need to DO something while I wait for the next appointment or class.  So, I have a whole bunch of websites I bookmarked on my computer and have them somewhat organized.  I figured I'd share what I found with you all (all 2 people who read my


-Info for extended family-


-Questions to ask when you get "The Call"-

-Making them feel welcome-
     -Welcome Boxes-
     -Welcome Book-
     -General welcoming tips-

-The First Night-

-Other foster tips/info-
A-Z tips --
New kid timeline --
When a child leaves --

This person's blog has been a gem to find.  It's from a former foster kid and she tells it like it is and I love hearing about experiences from the foster kid point of view.

And in case I didn't list enough websites for you to visit, here's a whole list of foster care blogs!  I haven't even made a dent in these!  lol

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

My foster care binder makeover

My binder for the licensing process so far is boring.  It's gray.  It was one I happened to have so I just started using it, but it seems so drab, especially when we're talking about dealing with kids.  It needs some life!  Soooo...I decide to be brave and try decoupage for the first time.   Here we go!


First, I needed to find WHAT I wanted to decorate it with.  I had a very worn (and scribbled on) kids' book that had cute pictures, so I decided to use that, but then I needed a background color.  Luckily, my mother-in-law got me addicted to scrapbooking, so I have every scrapbook paper/color known to man.  I found 2 of the same yellow sheet that matched nicely with my cute pictures, but I also needed an accent color for the spine because the yellow sheets weren't big enough, so I grabbed a red.

I also had Mod Podge from a while ago that I bought but never actually was brave enough to try, so I had that already on hand.  Also needed sponges to spread the Mod Podge, scissors to cut out my cute pictures, paper trimmer to measure and cut the correct size and wax paper to try to keep from making a huge mess on the
My supplies.   

I emptied my binder (which might be a pain to put all the stuff back in then but I didn't want to risk getting the papers messy.)  I did the spine first.  According to what I've read on how to do this, I spread the Mod Podge on the binder AND on the back of the paper.  Placed the paper where I wanted it, creased the corners and then spread more all over it again, especially the edges.  I used a baking scraper (seen in a picture farther down) to help get rid of air bubbles and make it smooth. I was a big old mess after this initial attempt.  It looks all nice and neat in the photo, but it took me a while to get it just right, get it creased without shifting (and the paper was somewhat stiff as well, so that didn't help.  Though in another how-to blog I read, they suggested dampening the paper if it's thick or stiff to help it be more pliable, but I didn't do that.)  So, got the red on finally and somewhat happy with the results, then I was stuck with how on earth I sit this to dry?  lol  If I laid it open the creases got funky and I wanted them to dry in a nice position, so I balanced it carefully (after it falling on the floor once and the glue picking up dust and dog hair, yay) on the back of the chair to dry (or mostly dry.)

I used this drying time to start cutting out my cute little pictures.  Once the red was mostly dry, I attached the front side of the yellow.  Again, made a huge mess, but got it on there.  Put Mod Podge all over the binder, then all over the back of the yellow sheet, then after placing it, attached more all over the whole front and especially around the edges and corners to make sure they stayed sealed down.  I've seen people fold the paper over to the inside, but the inside had a pocket and I didn't want to mess with that, so I just cut it right to the edge and hoped it'd stay down.  Then I let that dry again.

The front getting ready for the cute pictures.  Notice my baking scraper thing, it worked fantastic to help get rid of air bubbles and scraping off excess.

Once that was mostly dry it was time for the fun part!  Adding all my cute little pictures.  I did lay them out on the other yellow sheet, kind of as a guide so I knew where I wanted them.  There was a lot of picking up and laying back down, but I got them on.  Again, I Mod Podged the base (the yellow sheet) AND the back of the picture AND over top of all of it once it was all down.  Once that all dried, I did another coat AGAIN, just to seal it well and make sure (and the edges again just to make sure.)

 After that was really dry, I turned it over and just placed a yellow piece on the back, no special pictures or anything.

The final result.  I had a hard time getting a good angle shot showing the spine as well, but you get the picture.

I let it all dry well overnight and this morning I put all my papers back in.  It looks to be holding up really well, no issues with anything peeling up at all.  I'm pretty pleased with it, especially as my first attempt at Mod Podge.  Next I'm going to decorate up an empty oatmeal container and use it for my headbands.  ;)  lol

Thursday, May 14, 2015


I often will talk to myself...yes, I admit it.  Usually when I'm in the car by  myself.  It kind of ends up being a deep thoughts kind of time for me.  I've been doing it a lot lately with all the foster care stuff going on. 

You may need a little back story to fully appreciate my epiphany, see my Religion versus Spiritualism blog post. 

There are three specific moments that tie into my epiphany. 

1.  We were at a holistic center of some sort years ago, I don't remember exactly what was happening, it may have been a class or maybe a short ritual to welcome the new year or something like that. The specific point relevant to this story is that one woman sitting in front of us, whom I didn't even know, turned around at some point and said to me that I was a healer.  It was a little surprising, I didn't really know why I would be considered a healer.  I don't have a gift with reiki (my husband does though), I don't work in the healthcare field, I didn't really know how "healing energy" connected with me.  (You have to understand, a lot of our beliefs revolve around intuition, reading auras, gut feelings, that kind of thing, so the fact that a random person made a comment about what she "felt" around me wasn't surprising.)  I didn't think much of it after that.

2.  I was at a holistic or spiritual festival, again, years ago, and was just wandering around.  There was a workshop at the side of the huge conference room with a woman talking about auras.  I missed most of it, but happened to be standing behind everyone sitting there when she offered to read some auras.  She started talking to the woman sitting in front of me and after a moment had to stop.  She looked at me and said, sorry, but could I move over?  My aura was distracting her.  LOL  Such an odd thing to hear.  Not something you hear every day.  I moved to the side, about 25 feet away and she kept going.  After another moment she stopped again and apologized to me again but said my energy is so high and my aura is so strong, she's still distracted by it.  I apologized and moved to behind HER so she couldn't see me even out of her peripheral  I do think this ties into my story...bear with me!

3.  We do belong to a small Native American type group (known as a tribe) locally.  Without going into a lot of details and explaining, which would take a while, you just need to know that when someone is asked to join and welcomed in, they get a tribal name, a gift and given a "job" (teacher, warrior, healer, etc), well, I was given "Healer".  Again, this healer thing comes up.  I still don't understand why *I* am a healer, but I'll go with it.  There are a lot of things in this world and in my life I don't understand and just assume that there's a Higher Power that knows best.  

Other things you should know about me to relate to this epiphany:
I have experienced having high "energy" fields before (I mean besides the distracting aura Growing up, my mom often would ask me to rub her head and said I had "healing fingers" (there's that "healing" again), I've had more than one person tell me that my energy is so strong that they feel my emotions, for example, I was annoyed with a lot of crap at work, having a rough and annoying day, was talking to my mom on the phone and she physically started shaking because my emotions and energy was so strong that day.  (I think my mom is very sensitive and empathic, so that could have some to do with her reactions to me as well.)  And, lastly, I break electronics.  No, seriously...I break them.  I don't know how, I don't do it on purpose, it just happens.  I honest-to-goodness think there's some sort of actual energy field in me that screws things up.  I've broken countless computers, cell phones often go screwy with me, I've even broken an EKG machine.  I don't DO anything to them, they just go wonky.

So, in the car, I'm just kind of chatting, daydreaming, thinking about fostercare, etc and out of no where, seriously like a light bulb went off, I feel like I have answers.

I am a healer, I've been told this many times, just don't know what or how I'm healing.  
What if I'm meant to be a "healer" for these foster kids?  What if I'm storing up all of this energy because I don't have any foster kids right now to "heal" so I'm kind of getting overcharged with healing energy with no where to release it yet?!  It sounds so simple to say.  Maybe no one else will really understand the sudden realization that I had and how strongly it felt "right".  I don't care.  (lol...that sounded rude, sorry.)  I just mean, it means something to ME and I feel how "right" it is, so that's most important.  It's ok if no one else gets it, it wasn't meant for them, it was meant for me and I get it.

I seriously cannot wait to finally get approved and get some kiddos in here!  Our CW said, you either love it or you hate it and you'll never know until you experience it.  Maybe I'll be shocked and absolutely hate it (I can't even imagine...and I think I'll be heartbroken since this may be our only option to have children in our lives.)  But I have to continue to think that we'll get approved (still have that stupid lingering doubt of what if!!!)  and we'll get a kiddo (or two) and we'll love them and love the fostercare process and will continue to help these children heal.  It may or may not work out that way, but until I know otherwise, that's what I'm hoping for....and I can't wait!

It sounds like I expect it to be all peaches and don't.  I definitely don't.  But I do expect it to be extremely rewarding and make those non-peaches-and-cream moments worth it.

Religion versus Spiritualism

Another blog post about an epiphany that I had will touch on our religious beliefs, so I'll sum that up here first, then feel free to read my "Epiphany" blog.

I'm a very spiritual person.  Not very religious, but very spiritual.  Some people don't understand what the difference is.  For me, personally, religion is very structured and has specific rules and usually involves other people, sometimes a lot of other people (ie-church service), being spiritual means I have a personal (and private) connection with a Higher Power, God or whatever you want to call Him.  (I don't think He/She/It cares what you call Him, otherwise that means He has an Ego and He doesn't, right?  Sorry, don't want to get too deep here and don't want to cause any kind of religious debate, just voicing my opinion.)

Anyway, I prefer not to have a title when it comes to religion.  I don't go to church or practice any specific path or faith.  I just don't think it's necessary and I haven't found one that I completely 100% agree with.  I believe what I believe and I think "God" wants us to be good people and do the right thing.  I think it really can be as simple as that.  However, the closest "path" I've found would be a form of Native American or some sort of earth based religion.  I do my own, private, spiritual things, my own version of prayer, meditation, candles, incense, smudging, etc.  My husband feels similar, he's very private, but he mostly considers himself pagan.  (For a great website debunking the stereotype of paganism click here.  Pagans do not worship the devil or sacrifice babies, that's so ridiculous.)

So, how were we raised in regards to religion and what do our families think of our choices?  (We get asked this a lot.)  I was raised in a Christian home, most of my family still practice Christianity, but all of my family supports the choices I make regarding religion/spiritualism.  My husband was raised Catholic and also has respect and support from his family regarding his choices..  We're very lucky that we have families that are open minded and supportive regardless of race, religion, sexual preference, hair color, weird piercings or tattoos, pretty much whatever, as long as we're good people.

It's a shame, but our religious/spiritual beliefs partially caused us to delay in approaching foster care.  Bottom line, there's a lot of negative stereotype in regards to paganism (and several agencies locally are Christian based.)  Luckily, our case worker (and agency) are completely ok with it (as they should be) as long as we're willing to allow the children to practice whatever religion they are used to, comfortable with, prefer, etc.  Of course we are and actually look forward to maybe learning about other customs or practices.

I know I don't have a lot of followers yet (I think maybe, but regardless, I will welcome any questions or comments regarding our beliefs as long as they're respectful.  It's sad that I even have to say that, but from experience, I know I have to.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mother's Day and conflicting emotions

DH and I have been "trying" for 13 years with no success.  Mother's Day has been pretty painful for me every year as a constant reminder of my desperate internal need to be a mother and my body's failure to successfully get pregnant.  I struggle every year with dealing with those emotions, but at the same time trying to enjoy and appreciate the time spent with my own mother, mother in law and grandmothers.

This year, like many others, I feel saddened because, yet again, I'm not pregnant and have no children, but I have the little bit of hope that things will change due to foster care and while I might not be the bio mom, I'll be another version of "mom" and while I hope to have the permanent "mom" position eventually, I'll cherish the temporary mom role while I have it.  But, again, I don't have it yet.  (And that stupid little niggling doubt in my head that we might not be approved is always there.)  This year I also have to deal with the recent loss of my grandmother, whom I was very close to and miss very much.

I do wish everyone a Happy Mother's Day and I hope those who have pain around this holiday, for whatever reason, find peace in the day somehow.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Sometimes my timing is so gosh darn amazing...

Amazing timing can be a good thing or a bad thing.  In this case, it had the potential for very bad.

My lovely grandmother passed away last week. It was heart breaking as she was like a mother to me and we were terribly close.  It was expected and due to her seriously poor health at the end, it was a true blessing for her, but still sucks for me (and those she left behind.)

Her funeral was Monday.  I had another foster care class on Tuesday (which they absolutely would have rescheduled, but I knew Nanny wouldn't want it postponed.  Any reason to hurry the process so she could have another great-grandchild in the family, she'd  I really was ok with having the class the next day, it did help me to get back to normal life.  I had been mourning the loss of "my Nanny" for years due to her health and like I said, it wasn't unexpected.  Anyway, the class was the next day and the topic.....grief and loss.  Are you kidding me?  Couldn't it be ANYTHING else today?  (And again, if I asked, she probably would have done something else, but I figured, maybe it's meant to be to have that class today.  "Everything happens for a reason" and blah blah blah, right?)

Well, it wasn't so much about death as it was about the loss the child feels about their bio parents, their toys, their routines, their lives as they knew them before, good or bad.  The stages, denial, anger, etc, and how they process them, how we help them cope, how the bios deal with it themselves and with their kids, etc.  Luckily, it didn't really trigger or relate to our recent loss.

I noticed when she left, I was back into foster-care-obsession-mode.  I realized that last week, after Nanny died (and I have to say, with my allergies going NUTS all week too) I was very distracted and had lost the obsession over it, but obviously just temporarily because it was totally back after she

So, I'm back to making my lists of to-do's, back to my constant daydreams of having a child there with every single thing I do, making dinner, running to the store, watching tv.  Going through scenarios of what I'd do with a child who was crying, who got in trouble, who asked questions, who met the family for the first time.....and on and on...  It's never-ending what my mind comes up with.  I think my brain is totally glad it had a break last week and wasn't uber-focused on it for a short time.  Well, sorry, brain.  Uber-focus is back.  I promise to try not to be neurotic about it, but I'm not holding out much hope.