Thursday, February 25, 2010

a birthday to celebrate

happy 25th birthday, my love!

you've officially been alive for a quarter of a century!!! wowsers. you're old :)

i can't wait to see what is in store for you this year...i think God has some great things on the horizon and i can't wait to walk through those with you.

"the Lord bless you from zion! may you see the prosperity of jerusalem all the days of your life! may you see your children's children! peace be upon isreal."
-psalm 128: 5-6

i love you.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

another placement call

we just got another placement call for 2 foster kiddos - a 4 year old girl and a 6 year old boy. they were just looking for someone to take them for the next two weeks until their family's next court case. it apparently was a domestic violence situation and they are pretty much guaranteed to go home with their mom at court. unfortunately, i had to say no. ryan's been traveling constantly so i don't think i'm ready to take on 4 kids on my own yet. however, i'm sad for these kids. i hope they can find someone to take them in so that the oldest can stay at the same school for the next 2 weeks. talk about traumatic if not!

please say a prayer for these kiddos to get settled somewhere great for the next two weeks! it's going to be a rough few weeks for them...

Monday, February 22, 2010


on february 4th there was a court date for the boys. ryan and i knew about it for several weeks before but we were pretty strongly advised not to attend by the boys' SW. she said that it was not necessary for us to be there and that if we needed to know anything, she would tell us. even though we didn't buy that at all, it just so happened that ryan was out of town that day any way and i did not want to go alone, so we didn't attend.

i'm still not 100% sure exactly what went on but the latest we've heard is that they did not really make any major decisions that day. we heard that the boys' mom pleaded guilty to the charges against her, but we're not really sure what those charges actually are...possibly neglect but definitely something drug related? i dunno for sure. however, baby P's dad has decided not to plead but instead wants a full trial. (*now i cannot even begin to tell how stupid this decision is but let's just say, that it's REALLY stupid! P's dad has not made any progress on his case plan at all since we've had the boys. he's repeatedly missed visits with P, been put back in jail for violating his no contact order with the boys' mom, refused drug tests and quit drug rehab. the deck is definitely stacked against him.*)

so, with that said, the judge decided to revoke P's dad's visitation for right now. the judge delayed the next court day until May 6th, and at that time, P's dad can requests his visits again. also at that court day, the SW will recommend the next step in reunifying this family. my guess, (*and this is a complete guess*) is that R and P will probably be returned to their mom sometime in the late summer, but i guess we'll just have to wait and see.

in the meantime, the SW has decided to allow the boy's mom the extra hour of visitation that P's dad is no longer allowed, so her visits are going to be increased to 2 hours/week. i cannot really explain it, but somehow, upon finding out about this, i had a sense of peace. our prayer throughout the last several weeks has been for God to prepare our hearts for what He has in store. while we don't know exactly what that is yet, i think both ryan and i have a sense that mostly it will be us letting the boys go. with that in mind, we (*probably ryan more so than me*) are trying to keep a positive attitude about the boys' mom and to prayerfully think about ways we can begin building a relationship with her. we know that in the future she will be the gateway to maintaining a relationship with R and P, and will also be the one raising and guiding them. we would love nothing more than to see her come to know Jesus through this process, and want to be mindful of if/how the Lord is calling us to be a part of that process.

mostly though, we're just soaking up the moments with "our" boys. we're trying not to take any laugh, smile or game of uno for granted. *even the moments when we both want to scream :)*

Sunday, February 21, 2010


over the last few months i have been exposed to more basketball games than i think i have in the last ten years put together. part of this increased basketball exposure has to do with this season's great performance of my alma mater, the kentucky wildcats, and the other part has to do with having R in our family. thankfully, from all this extra basketball i've become quite the aficionado...*well, at least compared to what i used to be :)

here are some pictures of some of the basketball we've enjoyed this season so far:

coach ryan (on the left) giving some advice to R's team

ryan and R before taking R to his first UK game. sadly R is a university of louisville fan so we had to force him to wear that shirt!
R getting some practice time in at home

R reading the program at a UL game (we try to be equal opportunity even though our hearts are with the CATS all the way!)

the UL game

R at one of his games (*please notice the size difference :) i think he's bound to be one of the biggest 6th graders ever!!!)

at the harlem globetrotters game
now we just need our wildcats to win the national title and this basketball season will be the best ever!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

my husband, the olympian

while ryan and i were studying at the university of kentucky we were both involved in campus crusade for Christ (*actually, we got engaged at one of crusade's weekly meetings...but that's a story for another time!). for a year or so, ryan was the emcee of the weekly meetings and made a bunch of funny videos with some of the other guys. occasionally i will randomly think back to some of these videos and laugh.

well, being that the winter olympics are going on right now, i have been reminded very frequently of one of my favorite crusade videos. ryan made it with some of his college roommates during the 2006 torino olympics. for some reason that year, the guys had a fixation on the hilarious sport of curling. here's their attempt to join the 2010 US olympic curling team:

i know that you are probably surprised by this, but unfortunately, ryan did not make his goal of joining the 2010 olympics. darn. he trained so hard...

Friday, February 19, 2010

the honeymoon is over

i'll try to keep this short and sweet so you're spared from all the details you don't want to hear...

basically, the last 3 weeks have been the most challenging of our foster care journey with R. through the training classes and the books i've read about fostering and adopting i saw a lot of information about the "honeymoon period" with foster kids. usually this period lasts about the first 3 months when the child is still trying to impress and not create a ruckus. they don't know their foster parents and their foster parents don't know them. some people call this the "observation and assessment period". the foster child is trying to figure out what will or won't press our buttons...what will get him in or out of to play one parent against the other, etc. well, i believe the honeymoon ended a few weeks ago for us. after the honeymoon, there is a period of testing the limits to see how much they can do before their family stops loving them. i think we got rocketed straight out of the honeymoon into this new phase a few weeks ago when all this happened.

now i don't want to mislead you into thinking something bigger happened than really did. i know many other foster families have experienced far worse than what we're going through! i mean thankfully R didn't do anything violent or crazy. instead, he just really disappointed us and caused us to question who he really is. even more than that, ryan and i were really disappointed in ourselves and our naivety! we thought we already had R pegged, when in reality, he probably has us pegged better than we know!!! we gave him too much space, too much freedom and too much trust too soon...

what it boils down to is that R cooked up a pretty big lie when he was backed in the corner about something else. unfortunately the lie he created was one that caused us to alert his social worker, therapist and the visitation center where the boys meet their mom. slowly, after about 36 hours of R elaborating his story with lie upon lie, we got to the truth. however, the hardest part for ryan and i in this process was an issue of pride. we went to bat for R. we told the social worker and the visitation center that they were the ones confused, not us, because we got our information from a more reliable source (*at least that's what we thought!). we stood up for R, believing what he was saying to be true, when it was not. defending him over his mom because of her track record...

yikes! it was pretty gut wrenching to have to make our apologies later, but all pride out the window, we did. unfortunately, the truth that came out of the situation was not rosey either. it was definitely different than what we were first led to believe but it wasn't necessarily any better.

this has just been such a learning experience for ryan and i. progress with R is definitely 2 steps forward, 1 step back, but at least we're aware of that now. even though he looks older, R is still a kid at heart. a very confused kid at that. he's been exposed to stuff that ryan and i could not dream of and a few months with us is not going to change that or wipe those past grievances away.

however, now being a few weeks removed from the situation, i can really see God at work in redeeming our family already. our trust will take some time to develop again but we are glad to see that we are still able to move forward. we have tried to reassure R all along that his mistakes won't make us stop loving or caring for him, even if they hurt us. this situation definitely has given me a new picture of the Gospel. it's hard for me to hold much of a grudge or stand in judgement of R when i do the same things everyday to my loving Father. it's amazing the insights God gives us through parenting :) all i know at this point is that i have a lot to learn!!!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

catching up

hey there blog world.

i am alive! i know, you're probably surprised by that. sorry for the lack of blogging but it's not that i haven't been writting posts, it just that i haven't been completing them. anyways, i've decided to work on actually publishing the posts i written over the last several weeks so you should see those popping up. sorry for the randomness of this, but at least they're finally getting posted :)

i hope to post an update on our lives sometime soon too! ta ta for now.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

happy v-day