Friday, December 7, 2012

K's Story-pt 2-The First Months

Pt 2

The first few months were so difficult! We had no clue what we were doing. Lol Even though we had three bio kids, we weren’t truly prepared for the difficulties of taking care of a baby going through detox.  She would scream and cry all day and all night, rarely stopping .You had to keep her hands covered with the little mitten things, or she would scratch her face till it bled.  She would draw her legs up into her chest, stiff as a board and just scream and cry in agony. It broke our hearts to see such a tiny little being, in such complete and utter misery!  Thankfully, we had early intervention services and through experimentation, trial and error, we figured out a way to help this precious one!  Super tight swaddling, and constant holding/baby wearing were what worked best. 

We made many trips to the pediatrician, because of her reflux. Everything she drank, came back up, nearly immediately.  She also was having huge issues latching onto the bottle nipples as she had low muscle tone development in her mouth.  So, you had to sort of stick your finger into her mouth, hold down her tongue, while sticking the bottle in at the same time, then slip your finger out, all in one swift motion, or she couldn’t suck. 

Her bottom was eviscerated.  It was like you raked it over a cheese grater, with immense sores, bleeding, etc.  The drugs had started to eat away her very skin, while she was in the womb. So, they gave us a thick cream to put on many times a day, which helped tremendously. All in all, it took about a month and a half to heal completely. 

During this time she had a couple visits with her birth mom.  She was so young.  We talked for a long while and she told me she grew up just like K, in the system, I mean.  Her mom and dad both did drugs and her father would prostitute her out, so he could get more. I cannot imagine what this gal has had to go through in her life, the pain she has and is dealing with.  It truly breaks my heart for her.  She said she’d like to get better and be able to take care of K. I told her we were praying for her and that I truly hope she can do it. I also told her to call me any time and I’d be there for her. I think that’s all I can do, at this point. Just try to be there for her, and be a good example for her, since she hasn’t seemed to ever have one. :(

It was also during these visits that we found out it was between 3 guys as to who the birth dad was. One guy she didn’t think it was him, the other didn’t want to be tested and the last was afraid to come forward as he already had two kids in the OCS system. 

To be continued…..

Friday, November 2, 2012

Lessons Learned

Over the past nearly 3 years, we have learned so much about the foster care system and our legal system.  Here are a few of the top things we've learned;

1.  The building says Office of Children Services but really it should be called-Office of We're Giving These Folks Every Possible Chance to Screw Up the Lives of Their Children and Endanger Their Safety and Well-Being. I suppose though, that it would cost too much to make a sign for that building. lol

2.  No one prepares you for what you are going to go through. There is no class, book or Google site that can properly prepare you for all the challenges you face, issues you need to address, learning techniques to help your child, etc.  You must constantly research and study new techniques, medicines, approaches and the like.

3. Every meeting, court hearing and the like that you attend, you are not even considered a party or participant.  The child is hardly discussed and instead it is about the parent and the progress that they have/have not made.

4.  There is a total and complete lack of minority and/or native foster homes.   There is a lack of foster homes. Period.  The number of children, here in Alaska, that need a safe home is well over 1300.  Think of that for a moment-1300 children. That's just the ones that are reported.  Doesn't count any new ones born each day, and doesn't count the unreported incidents.

5.  Often, YOU are these children's ONLY voice. Sure, they have a court appointed guardian ad litem, but I can count on one hand, the number of times we've seen ours in 3 years.  The only one who has the child's best interests at heart, and can bring their interest to the forefront of the case, address their needs whether that is therapy, physical therapy, intervention services, etc is YOU! The squeaky wheel gets the grease- so squeak loud and proud!!

6. We were so naive when we started this whole process. We truly believed that the bad guy got punished and went to jail. Yet, we have learned that in our case, the bad guy, keeps on doing what he has done the entire time, has over 70 court cases and hasn't done any jail time, follows us from OCS, but nothing can be done, racially threatens us, yet nothing is done, and even threatened my life with the words, "IF you wish to remain in her life..." and yet, nothing is done. It is written down and a report is filed. The end.  This dude even has attempted to kidnap another child in another state, and yet NO JAIL TIME! Wondering when this bad guy is going to get punished. ;(

7.  No matter what you endure, the trials your lovely little one puts you through as they detox, or face their anxiety issues, etc, it is all worth it at the end of the day. You have given loving care to someone who needed it desperately.  You have provided them shelter in their time of need, a shoulder to cry on, someone to voice their opinions/feelings to, without fear of reprimand, and that in and of itself, is a blessed thing.

Please, please consider becoming a foster parent. There are so many children who need you! You can help! You can make a difference. Contact your Office of Children's Services today!!

Monday, August 20, 2012

10 FREE ways to Make a Difference

For those of you who aren't familiar with it, I believe in a simple take 10 philosophy; take 10 minutes a day to make a difference in the life of someone else. I believe that if everyone did that, the world would be a better place!

Here are 10 ways you can do that, for FREE:

1. Make a conscious effort to smile; You'd be surprised how often a simple smile can brighten someone's day.

2. Give someone a genuine compliment; Pretty skirt, nice shoes, I like your hair like that, or even You are so patient! Good job!

3. Remember your manners-say please, thank you, no sir, yes ma'am, etc.  Being polite is always helpful!

4. Do something nice for someone; take initiative and fold the laundry, grab an extra cup of coffee from the coffee pot for your spouse, make a homemade goodie for after work/school etc.

5. Go through your stuff; donate old clothing, shoes, furniture, what nots, etc.  Someone can use them and appreciate them! AND your home will be neater/easier to clean so you are helping yourself at the same time!

6. Volunteer-I know, you are so busy. But are you really so busy you can't spare 20 minutes a week to read to a group of preschoolers, to cut out shapes for your child's teacher, to make copies, etc?

7. Do a good deed; Gather your vacationing neighbor's mail, walk a dog, wash a window, cut an elderly neighbor's grass, etc, clean the home of a new mom, sick neighbor, etc.

8. Organize a neighborhood garage sale/food drive/clothing or toy drive; Give the profits/proceeds to your favorite charity.  You can also do the same with any of those home party companies; Scentsy, 31 Gifts, Tupperware and have the proceeds donated to your food bank, women's shelter, etc.

9. Make something for someone; perhaps you have a painting talent-paint a picture for a sick neighbor, or sewing-make a pillowcase for Conn Kerr Cancer Center, knitting-knit a remembrance blanket for a family that's lost their little one.

10.  Send a letter, text or email; just to let someone know you are thinking of them and how much you miss them, how important they are, what a good person they are, etc.  Take a minute to personalize it.  Haven't heard from a friend in a while? Write them and let them know you care, they just might need to hear it.

If you do one or more of the things on this list, you WILL make a difference. Not just in someone else's life, but in your own!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Top 10 Most Annoying Remarks/Comments Made to Foster/Adoptive Parents

Some folks are just blunt and some are just rude, yet some are just curious. Here's a small list of the most annoying/rude remarks folks have made to my family;

1. "Oh, she's so pretty! What is she?"  Umm, she's a human, she's a little girl, she's a two year old-what exactly is the response you'd like? lol

2. "Did you adopt her?" Um, do I know you? This is your business, how?  Maybe the wife before me was brown, for all you know. Does it make a difference?

3. When telling someone about foster care and the number of kids in AK that need homes, "So, I can get a brown baby of my very own?"  Um, yeah. Once you go to the hospital and have my foot removed from your behind, you sure can.

4. "White trash whore."  This one I left alone for two reasons- the people that said it were two huge, fat, skinhead looking dudes, and I choose to act like a lady in front of my children.

5. "What are you going to tell her about her real mom?" Um, hello? I have had her since birth, taken care of her 24/7, it doesn't get any more real than that! Thank you.

6. "White people shouldn't get to adopt black babies." Well, you know what they say about opinions. ;) And for your info, she is not JUST black, she is also Native. My husband is Native. We are educated folks, me with a degree in Childhood Development-so I do think we are knowledgable enough to teach her about her culture, expose her to people of different races and heritages (that's the good thing about the military) and to be honest, if OCS waited for folks of suitable cultures and races to be found for each child, there would be even more homeless children than what we are dealing with now! And furthermore, using the same argument, she will get more education about her culture and heritage in my home than what she would in her own birth home.  This has been a proven fact.

7. "She's not your real sister." This was said to my son and I love his response, "We are the only family she knows. I would do anything for her and I love her so much. She is too, my real sister. "

8. "Oh, she's your FOSTER daughter." No, she is my DAUGHTER. ONLY.  No additives, no adoptive daughter, adopted daughter, foster daughter, just. plain. daughter.  ;)

9. "She's so lucky there are people like you to take in kids like her."  Um, Wow. She is not a dog.  She is not a stray and if you ask any member of my family, WE are the lucky ones. We have been truly blessed to get to know and take care of this little one. You should always help others, it's the right thing to do. We choose to set the example for our kiddos, instead of the whole do what I say, not what I do theory that seems to be so popular nowadays.


10. "Why didn't you pick one that looked like you, then nobody would know?" Well, it's not like you can hit your local Walmart and look through the aisles selecting the "perfect" child.  And when we entered into this decision, though admittedly we wanted a girl (my house is testosterone city) , we decided we would help whoever needed it, boy/girl, baby/teen, white/black/purple, etc.  I am not, nor will I ever be ashamed of having a child that looks different than the rest of my family.  I am so proud to have this little one, and any future little ones that we may have one day.  I know that the rest of my family feels the same.

These children need you. They need a shelter from the storm that is their everyday life.  They need kindness, love and a nurturing environment.  That is and has always been our number 1 objective, to provide a safe home for a child in need. When you do that, with an open heart and open mind, you set a wonderful example for your family and for your community.  I ask that you think, before you speak.  My little one is getting to be two, she does understand what is being said and so do her brothers, who are usually present.

If you are curious about a family, ask them when the children aren't around.  Be discreet.  If you'd like to consider foster care; I implore you to do so! There are hundreds of children right here in Alaska, that need homes.

For more information on becoming a foster family;


1-800-478-7307 or

Thursday, July 5, 2012

1000 Fan Giveaway-Crib Couture

We have reached a major milestone over on my Facebook Page-Crib Couture. To celebrate, we are having  a giveaway. Please go like the following Facebook pages, who have sponsored this giveaway:

Kellye Green of Cat's Meow-Donated a custom baby wipe case-Winner's Choice

Jean Santiago of Body by Vi-Donated a Balance Kit, Shaker Ball and Blender Cup

Tiffany Dalzell of Scentsy-Donated One Plug In Warmer and Three Scent Bars-Winner's Choice

Jessie Goodwin of Crib Couture-Donated One Beautiful Pettiskirt and Matching Bow-

Jessie Goodwin of 31 Gifts-Donated a Thermal Tote-

Sandy Turner of Discovery Toys-Donated a 10% off Gift Certificate

April Mazey of The Steady Hand-Donated a $10 Gift Certificate to her Etsy shop

To like the Facebook pages (mandatory entry) just click the links and click like.
Good luck!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Coach Purse and Wallet Giveaway-Hosted by Madame Deals

This is a multi-blog event for a FABULOUS Coach Purse and Wallet!

**Powered by Madame Deals and Slop Swap**

Thanks to our hosts for helping us run this great giveaway:
Dixieland Product Reviews & Giveaways
Colleen's Book Nook
Still Blonde after all these YEARS
Saving More Than Me
Diva Fabulosa

This giveaway will run from 6/14 12:01 am EST thru 6/30 11:59 pm EST

If you've entered any of our other Madamde Deals Events, this will be easy for you.

There is 1 mandatory entry of a blog comment plus Facebook likes for bonus entries.

Wait for the Rafflecopter to load and enter below:

Monday, June 4, 2012

Celebrate Father's Day with $100 in Omaha Steaks-Giveaway!!

Celebrate Dad,with Omaha Steaks! Grill out for him, for once, and let him kick back and relax! Get a chance to win 1 of two $100 gift certificates to Omaha Steaks! This giveaway was made possible by American Family, Bay Area Mommy and some awesome bloggers!

What's more, American Family is offering a new recipe ebook for barbecues! Download it to get 25 entries to the giveaway! PLUS an additional 25 bonus entries for it, giving you a total of 50 entries for just downloading! How can you pass up these FREE entries? I don't know about you, but I am ALWAYS experimenting in the kitchen and appreciate new recipes, especially FREE ones! ;)

Giveaway runs from June 1, 12am EST to June 14, 11:59pm EST. Open to US residents only. Must be 18 years or older to be eligible to win. Please read the Terms and Conditions of this giveaway at the very end of the Rafflecopter form. Good luck!