Foster Parent Prayers Day 3

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. Psalm 91:1-2 I have discovered there is a lot of worry that can accompany the foster care journey. Our kids come to us with sad and sometimes scary stories. Sometimes they are reunited before we think they are (or their bio family) ready. Sometimes a judge orders contact with a parent that hurt them physically. Sometimes they are exposed to domestic violence. Sometimes-- heck, most times-- we don't get much of a say for their safety or well being outside of the walls of our home. I have also discovered that worrying and fretting doesn't serve a purpose other than to work me up and stress me out. A wise friend reminds me frequently that fear and faith can't co-exist. So, the next time you are worried … [Read more...]

You’ve Got This, Mama

My monthly post for The MOB {Mothers of Boys} Society is up over there.  I wrote about a difficult topic but one that many of us mama's have or will face.  Would love you to join me there today!   … [Read more...]

My Real Children

One of the questions that annoys me {and many other adoptive parents. I'm sure} is "are you her real mother?" Or, even better, "are they real brothers?" Really? They share the same parents and the same last name, what do you think? For the record, real moms come in a variety of packages.  Some carry their babies for nine months, only to make the brave choice that the best way they can parent is to let someone else parent their child.  Some travel thousands of miles to the other side of the world to bring home a child from an impoverished, desperate situation and literally love them to life.  Still others provide homes for children temporarily, until the child's parents begin to make better choices or an adoptive family is found.  Many feel called to parent older children, about to … [Read more...]

When Parenting Teens and Young Adults is Hard

Wouldn't it be nice if our kids could look at the replay of our lives and consider our mistakes a lesson learned on their behalf, thus saving themselves from anguish and heartache? If you read here regularly, you know I write a monthly column for The M.O.B Society, a popular website just for mama's of boys.  As a writing team we try to watch the Facebook page and give advice and insight when we can to questions that moms post there.  Yesterday, a mom posed a question about her 14 year old questioning his relationship with God and not wanting to go to church.  I've been down that road once or twice with my kids and quickly typed out a response for this mama that went something like this: One of my boys was 14 when he went through this same type of issue. I was so scared and sad but our … [Read more...]

Wisdom from a toddler?

It's been awhile since I've been around toddlers, considering that my youngest son is almost 16! Since moving to Florida I've been spending lots of quality time with my youngest niece and nephew {almost a year and 3} and my Sweet Pea {who will turn 3 September 1st} is staying with the hubby and I for the time being.  I'm knee deep in potty training, temper tantrums, Bubble Guppies and the like. And, I LOVE it.  Toddlers and preschoolers have the sweetest dispositions and even when exerting their will can't help but be cheek smooching adorable. Recently, Lariah {aka Sweet Pea} pulled me to the sliding glass door for the 3,491st time that day to "look at the lithards".  I felt irritation creeping up my neck but it dissipated as I glanced down at her eager face.  She was genuinely … [Read more...]

Dear Weary Mom: The days go by so fast

I texted him at 9pm "This time 17 years ago you were 45 minutes old :) Love you so much!" How does seventeen years go by in the blink of an eye? How do you put the brakes on this growing up and becoming a man thing that is happening before your eyes?  How do you look up into the eyes of the baby that is taller than you and not want to press rewind to the days when he sat in your lap asking you to "read it gen, mama" or when he would fall asleep on your shoulder with a strand of your hair wrapped in his chubby hand so he would be instantly alerted when you tried to lay him in his crib? I know that when you are in the throes of temper tantrums, runny noses and sleepless nights that it is hard to imagine ever wishing every.single.one of those days back again.  Believe me, I … [Read more...]

Worth the Wait

  Take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4 Have you ever prayed for something for such a long time that you started to wonder if God was listening?   The longer the wait, the shorter my faith. Shame on me. It was 17 years ago this spring that I had to make the incredibly difficult decision to stay put while my dad and brothers moved away.  I was a scared 17 year old girl, about to become a mama for the first time.  I didn't want the type of life for my baby that I had grown up with.  Letting my little brothers go without me literally tore my heart out and took me years to get past.  Looking back, I know I made the right decision but a piece of my heart traveled with them and I have never gotten it back. I have prayed and longed to … [Read more...]

About that extra 21st chromosome

Today is World Down Syndrome Day. Just typing that makes me smile.  My life has been blessed by knowing several people with an extra 21st chromosome. Each one has brought joy to my life, especially Shawn. Shawn has taught me A LOT in the three years I've known him. Like the joy of turning up the music {despite the fact that his favorite is Justin Bieber} and dancing crazy-like in the car.  That going over bumps in the road is hysterically funny.  That ice cream cures all.   That playing fetch with my mini schnauzer, Chloe is a great way to spend three hours on a Sunday afternoon. I love how God shows off.  What the world views as a mutation, a genetic abnormality, is the perfect blend to create the most loving group of people I've ever had the pleasure to know. Do you know … [Read more...]

Loosening My Grip

Sometimes, when I am quiet in this space, it becomes increasingly intimidating to return. Is anyone reading here still?  And the haunting question always lurking in this writers mind-- do I have anything important to say? But God, sweet friends! He just doesn't give up on this pen to paper call He has placed in my heart.  So, I write again. Life has been challenging so far this year.  I am learning to parent palms up--letting go as my children learn to navigate this world on their own.  I never imagined watching my children stumble could hurt so much.  Gone are the days of brushing off skinned knees and bandaging boo-boos.  Two of my children are actually grown-ups now and two are quickly nearing the end of their childhood years. We had to carry out some tough love with one … [Read more...]

Homecoming

We don't always realize how beautiful the tapestry of our life is turning out to be.  We get caught up in the busy of everyday life and fail to take note of the extraordinary way He weaves things together.  Friends, even when life doesn't make sense or you are left wondering why God lays something on your heart but doesn't explain His plan, trust that He has a purpose for ALL things in our lives.  Seeing those things come to fruition is truly a beautiful thing. I have always had a special place in my heart for children with special needs, specifically Down Syndrome.   I worked as a case manager for children with developmental disablities back in 2007 and LOVED it.  Many of you that read here know I advocate for Reece's Rainbow, an agency that assists in the adoption of children with … [Read more...]

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