Highlights

December 13, 2014

Some days of full of good things and bad things.

Today was one with a significant highlight.

Reid is in his second season in a special hockey program.  One of our main goals has been for him to learn to be able to skate independently.  He was getting close at the end of last year.  It took him a while to get back up to speed this year.  He has been getting close.  The coaches have ben working to be get up by leaning on his hockey stick, or his leg to get up.

I was watching him play on the ice, like he usually does.  Then, I saw him get up and skate about five or six steps.  I was completely stunned.  I was pleased to see all the work he has been doing pay off.

Life can be surreal

November 25, 2014

There’s a whole lot of stuff going on this week.

We just finished sending an email to Reid’s birth mother offering to pick her up for the annual open adoption Christmas party. This will be the fourth year we have done this.

We just found out that a foster situation we have been dealing with for the last year is not going as well as the agency had hoped, so it will still be going on for a while. We don’t know how much longer it will continue. There are so many things that need some involvement from family, but it isn’t. It is unbelievable how frustrating it us when people don’t get the whole picture and his serious things are.

We have seen another situation where things have happened to a child that are just awful, and the child is just dealing with the situation.

It is interesting how our family has been formed by adoption, and continues to be shaped by our involvement with the system.

Adoption has enriched our family and our lives.

Observations

November 23, 2014

It is interesting how each child has special abilities.

Reid seems to have an uncanny idea to identify places that we have been to, often only once, or at some distant point in the past.

A couple of weeks ago, he picked out a spot Tate played soccer a couple of years ago as we were driving down the street.

Today, we were driving by an arena that he played hockey at this spring.

Tate played at the soccer field for a few months, and we could have approached the field from the other way on a couple of occasions.

The arena is really unusual, as we would not have been by there before.  We were driving down a street at a completely different angle than we would have when we went there before.

He has always been good at recognizing locations.

So, is he just good at locations, or is this some sort of extraordinary skill?

Foster/Adoptive Dad — Got a Minute To Chat?

November 18, 2014

ouradoptionexperience:

Here’s a post from a dad who adopted two boys when they were a bit older. It rings very true.

Originally posted on Parenting Traumatized Children:

How are you doing? No, I mean really… how are you doing? Behind that facade you’ve built. You see, I’ve been a foster/adoptive dad for a while and I know you struggle. I struggle. So, we have some common ground. I have boys. Do you have girls? Are they young? Teenagers? Doesn’t really matter, the issues are still the same. 

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Reflections

November 17, 2014

Foster care can be a tough gig for everyone involved.

Children are removed from their families.  Some go back.  Some don’t and are placed for adoption.  Some adoption placements break down for various reasons.

It is serious to remove a children from families.  Everyone is affected.  Children end up feeling angry and resentful.  They wonder what they have done to deserve this.

November is adoption month.

World adoption day has passed, with no comment from me.

Not everyone is called to foster or adopt.  It is difficult yet rewarding work.

Everyone can be provide some sort of support.  Be a friend.  Offer a listening ear.  Offer to watch the kids for a couple of hours so the parents can go and do errands or just be together alone.

Developmental phases

November 9, 2014

There are certain phases of life that parents dread.

One is the barrage of “Why?” questions, about pretty much everything in life.

Another is the tattling of siblings on each other.

From what I have heard, it seems the why question seems to pop up around the age of three.  Reid started asked it quite frequently within the last month or so.  Sometimes he’ll get a “Why not?” back.  He is approaching the age of five, but that milestone seems to be more consistent with where he is at.

This morning, as the boys were eating breakfast, Reid complained that “Tate is looking at me”.

Again, one of those annoying little things, but it is nice to see and hear these typical developmental milestones, even though it may be a bit late.

Sometimes phases seem to last forever, but eventually they will pass.

I read something quite recently, you never know it will be the last time you do something – tuck in a child, pick up a child, throw him over your head, or get ready to send them off to school….. elementary, high school, or college.

Time is slipping quickly away.

Stubbornness

October 31, 2014

Kids can be stubborn at times.

Sometimes, it is cute.

Other times, the floor opening up and falling in would be a relief from the absolutely overwhelming temper tantrum.

Ultimately, it does serve them as, it helps them move past obstacles that seem insurmountable.

It’s part of the human nature to respond to “You can’t do that”, with “Oh yeah?  Watch me.

Changing seasons

October 25, 2014

There are a few signs that fall is well under way and winter will be rolling in soon.

The days are becoming agonizingly short.  Arriving at work in the dark has been happening for a few weeks.

It is becoming cooler.  Jackets are a necessity, not an option.

The leaves have been scenic for a few weeks, and are almost down.

We took our last trip of the season today to Wonderland.

Before we know it, snow will be blowing around.

Status changes

October 20, 2014

It has been a busy year.

I haven’t been writing as much this year, as I have other years, for many reasons.

We have had a foster child since September, 2013.

It took about a month for him to adjust to our family, but things have gone pretty well.

Since August, he has been having more visits with his mom.  There have been some overnight visits since September, and they are becoming more frequent and longer.  The case goes back to court in late November, and it appears that he may be returning, likely by Christmas.

We have mixed feelings.  We can see that there are requirements and expectations that are not being met.  It looks like the agency is trying to get to to a point that there may be come concerns, but not at a unacceptable level.  Sounds confusing?  it took a few tries to land here.

So what’s ahead?  Good question.

Milestones

October 3, 2014

In the midst of our busy lives, it us important to be aware if milestones.

Yesterday (October 2) we celebrated our 21st wedding anniversary.

Two kids, four trips to Burkina Faso, and many other adventures later, we are happily married.