Tag Archives: hope

Learning Language in Toddler Time

Language development is one of the most intriguing things I can think of.  I remember as a young child sitting in history class, maybe in sixth or seventh grade listening to my teacher teach on some ancient civilization.  I remember it because of the un-thought out question that I had.  The statement was made that the civilization did not have a written language.  Before the teacher could explain further my hand sprung up and I was called on to ask “if they did not write things down, how did they communicate?”  Yes I very un-thought out question.  Being able to communicate is the the same thing as being able to write.

Read more here: http://www.oaksacorns.com/baby-puzzle/learning-language-in-toddler-time


Two Will Become One, Most Likely?

At the end of April Cheryl and I had our monthly visit by our case workers for both of our kiddos.  The workers had agreed to both meet at the same time because they were coming from the same office and would be able to use the car pool lane in rush hour traffic.  It worked well for us also because it combined two meetings into one.

The monthly visits are for the purpose of the workers having contact with the kiddos.   They can see them in Cheryl and I’s home and also so they can ask about the progress of the kiddos.  There is a form of questions that we go through and by this point we know the questions that will be asked so things run pretty smoothly.  The worker for our younger kiddo went first.  Everything has been progressing well for her and the conversation went quickly.  Then the worker for our older kiddo’s worker went and we reported the same type of progress we had seen in past months.

At the end, the older kiddo’s worker told us that by the end of May he would be going to live with relatives.  The worker told us that she did not have more details for us, but that she would let us know as the time got closer.  It is good news for him as it is a mid-step back to his home.  As always, it is hard on Cheryl and I.

In the last two weeks, we have heard no further news about when the transfer will happen.  We understand that the logistics take a lot to hammer out and that it all does not happen overnight.  Still, it is hard to feel like we are an afterthought to the communication loop.

On a side note, our kiddo who went to live with his dad in early April will be coming over this weekend to visit.  We had hoped he could visit for his sister’s birthday, but schedules did not work out.  We are excited because our now oldest placement still asks where his playmate is and when he might see him.  Transitions are so hard for these kiddos.

Thanks for reading.  Have a great day!

Phone Call

Events from Friday…

Every time the phone rings my heart goes into my throat, is this the time? 4:29am, no just Nick getting ready for work. What do I need to get done today on my day off? Clean the car, clean the house, clean the clothes, visit my mom and install our car seats. And oh yeah, maybe become a fostering parent? “Bye Cheryl, I love you. time for work.”

Nick is out the door and oh yes, sorting – colors from whites. So many more essential colors from the whites, stick those in first. On the way out to the front room two large dishes, a few cups and on look there is my phone. Stick the clothes in and beep and beep they are set for 50 some minutes off to tackle those dishes. First let the water warm up from the frigid cold, maybe I could start wiping down the counter. Why haven’t we got a call yet. It has been more than 12 hours. How does this work. Ah, the steam from nice warm washing water stats to rise. First one of the large dishes and the second. Buzz, buzz, buzz, buzz – my phone sounds like a mooing cow.

“Hey, any news”. Just Nick he made it to work just fine, but there went my heart, into my throat. “No,” I responded, just working away. So much to get done, I want this place to be perfect.

Another hour goes by another load of laundry goes in. Counter and dishes done, bathrooms are next. Our cute little frog toy sits on the counter staring at me as I start with the counter tops. Scrub scrub, “buzz, buzz, buzz, buzz,” moos my phone. My heart leaps back into my throat. Could this be the time we start fostering? I look at the caller ID our worker from the foster care agency we are working with. My heart climbs a bit higher. “Hello,” I ask? From the other end of the line, “any news?” Wait a second…. why is she asking if I have any news we are waiting on news from her. “No, we still have not heard back. How long do we normally wait to hear back?” I asked in confusion. She went on to explain that when our information is given to CPS the phone call should come through within two to three hours. Wait… I sat waiting last night and by about 6:30 we were out of that window of probability. My heart sunk.

Another hour went by, another load of laundry in, the dishwasher done and dishes out and front room and bedroom cleaned up…. Folding folding folding, “buzz buzz buzz buzz” mooed my phone. Caller ID displayed a number I do not know, my climbs back into my throat. Click. On the other line something about switching some plan. Oh my goodness my heart can’t keep going through this.

Another hour or so… Laundry switched over and I am out the door. Off to clean the car. So tough to get across the intersection coming out of our housing development. Across the inter… “Buzz buzz buzz buzz” mooes my phone. Car display says “NIck’s Work”. “Hello.” ,”any news,” how much more can I my heart handle? “No, just getting out of the house,” I explained. I went on to tell Nick about all that our worker told me. We both agreed that we feel like we had only a partial idea of what we should be expecting. We hung up and I drove on to get the car cleaned. Then over to the fire house. I learned that it is apparently a myth that fire stations will help show the correct ways to install car seats.

“Buzz buzz buzz buzz,” mooed again my phone. Caller ID “mom”. Click. “Hello,”. Hi sweetly, are you on your way up?” After calming my heart back into my chest I told her I was and the events of the morning. Mom continues to be supportive and helpful. Once up there we tried another fire house and another fire stations that will not help install car seats. We had lunch and did a little mother daughter grooming time at a local salon. Nice to have a good connection. Relaxing in the seat and, ” buzz buzz buzz buzz” mooed the phone. A Goodyear friend who a the end of the conversation offers to help install my car seats. Yes!!!

The drive home. Got on the road 30 minutes or so ahead of the rush hour traffic. 35 miles across the valley I drive. “Buzz buzz buzz buzz,” mooed the phone again. The hearts jumping has subsided a bit and now it feels a little less surprising. Caller ID, “Nick’s Work”. He asks about how the day went. I tell him about the events of the day and that I am on the way to finally get these car seats put in. We click off and I make my way to our friends house. The car seats are super simple and I know I can do it without a problem. Finally back home after my day off of “work”.

The evening goes by without the phone call we waited for. My heart got some good exercise. Sitting here on Saturday morning enjoying our time together and waiting for the moo of my phone, the moo from our worker.

Thanks for reading.

Thank Yous and Updates!

First off…

Thank you to everyone who were able to make it either in person and in spirit to our Welcome to Parenting Foster Party this last Sunday.  We are blessed with so much support and we are very thankful for everything people have shared with us.  So many wonderful expereince, advice and things to help us be better prepared as we welcome little ones in our home.  This process would have been/will be so much more diffecult without all of you by our side, supporting us in the many, many ways that you have.



Above is a glimps of the festivities.


Tuesday Nick was interviewed by our worker for more than two hours.  There were lots and lots of questions, but was split into three main parts.  The first were the overall skills of providing care, secondly she asked about the support system and the family we grew up in and finally the current family unit of the two of us.  Guess there is no real way to cram for that type of interview because the questions were all about him and he just had to answer from how he saw it.

Tomorrow we will have the state out for the tour and inspection of our home.  Our worker did a quick one at the end of the interview and said that everything should be fine.  We had to turn down our water heater because the temp was about 122 which is above the 120 mark.  We picked up lockes for the two crates that we have the pesiticides, paint and bleach in.  We should be set for that inspection tomorrow along with Cheryl’s interview and then our joint interview.  Should be more of the same types of questions.  There are more than 70 pages that have to be filled out by our worker to be given to the state.  

We will keep everyone posted on the events of tomorrow and the soon to be placements.  Thanks for reading

Foster class – Session 5

Yesterday we met for our fifth foster licensing class.

Since the first class the presenters have been saying they end the class meeting on a positive note which we found out yesterday that it was more in jest then seriousness. The topic of the class was foster parent complaint and CPS investigation. The largest take away received was the idea of openness and communication. It may or may not be natural to pick up the phone and call someone to file an incident report every time something happens but it sounds like that is what should be done so that they are running records of the situations. I think our presenters thought it would be a scary thing, but it makes sense that parents who have had they children removed will try everything to get them back even if it means trying a bit of creative story telling.

After our presenters talked for a time we had the chance to meet foster parents. They have 10 children in their home, 2 biological children, 6 adopted children and 2 foster children. Very interesting to hear the parenting styles and the things they do to be effective. They both work in independent jobs which lets them have more time in the home which is probably how they can manage 10 children. They talked a bit out a parenting program called Love and Logic which in Buckeye Nick was trained on the teacher side of things. It is Truly an amazing to hear the things that they have set up to be effective.

At the of of the session two of our classmates declared that they had other arrangement for the last class. We have been going to these classes for five weeks, splitting up our Saturdays. After next Saturday we will be done. We received more then the typical amount of homework this week, it looks a lot like we will be using the homework as our main driver for interaction for our single session next week.

That is all for now, thanks for reading.

Check In

More to come later in the weekend when there is more time.  Today we completed the first of 6 sessions to be licenced.  Lots and lots of information.  Good class and the presenters keep the information flowing at a good rate.  We are both much more energized about the process after todays first class.  Sill lots more to learn and do.  Specifics of the session to follow later tonight or tomorrow.  Have a great day.


It is interesting how things seem to work out some times. We have no idea why they are happening the way the are happening at the time. It takes a lot of conviction to have faith that things will work out how they are meant to work out especially when they do not not seem to work the way we wish they would.

We are 45 days away from our 8th wedding anniversary which means we have actively been trying to expand our family of two to three or more for almost 8 years now. Lots of things have happened in the the mean time and we have shared some of those things on this blog. At this point I cannot say that our appreciation for a we’d life would be the same without going through what we have. All I know for certain is how we feel about it today.

Yesterday afternoon nick had a conversation with his dad. His dad told Nick that there was a close friend whose niece just had a child. That niece and her partner are unable to take care of the baby. Additionally the family members on both sides are involved in things or too old to take full time care of this baby. He said that his friend was seeking others, like friends of the family to try to adopt the child.

It really felt like a story book idea, but after talking with the friend we realize there are some hurdles that may still be in our way. It has been a few weeks since the friend has been in contact with the niece so it is still very possible that the child has found a forever home. Also it sounds like there might be some issues with the state (they live in Utah) concerning the process.

We are optimistic that this baby may be in some way our future, but understand that there are a lot of things that we are going to have to overcome. Our next step is to wait for Monday when the mother of the niece goes to talk with the case manager. We hope to have a better understanding of where the future for this baby lies. We will keep you all posted

Returning back to the start of the post and talking about the experiences hat we have had bring us to where we are. If all of the numbers stack up just right the boy was born almost on the first day of our IVF cycle. If we had known from the beginning we would have been much further along on the process. However at that time we were not in Alsace to consider adoption. We really had to have the emotional experience of the IVF cycle to feel this calling to adoption/fostering. And either way we know that even if this baby does not solve our puzzle this will not be the end.


Arrived at ARMS a half hour before our scheduled appointment.

Cheryl has been taken back and given an IV drip. All of the pre op stuff was done and we able to be in the room together. At around 8 they asked me Togo into the main waiting room and took Cheryl back. It is now 9 and still no idea where they are at in the procedure. Cheryl was very nervous about the day.

Our Doctor came into the pre op area with his hair net… Kinda funny looking. But he said the the symbols on it were Native American fertility symbols. Every little bit helps.

Sitting in the front waiting room there is never any real conversation. Couples come and go and singles as well. Cheryl and I have talked about it… Kinda weird, but we have figured put that it is the culture of the office.

I was expecting to be called back for my own contribution a while ago. I guess that Ido not know their time frame. Should have been something that I asked. I know Cheryl thought the procedure was only 20 minutes long. I am sure it is normal timing, just the nerves in my own head.

Have to go… Being called back. More to come…


Before the appointment thoughts:

This morning we woke up and decided to spend a few minutes out on the back porch. Anticipation of any upcoming event can cause some excitement, desire, fear, joy, really those butterflies. We sat with Marley and Curley and enjoyed the morning air. We sat down with a pen and a pad of paper to write down questions to ask our RE. The truly difficult thing is what can a couple really know to ask. We have only had one chance to meet directly with our RE and even with the list that we made that time I remember thinking afterwards that we knew a whole lot but still did not know everything we wanted to know.

We plan on asking about the complete process of IVF. What we should expect. What we will encounter. What procedures will come up. What types of diagnostic procedures will occur. I think we are looking for a timeline. With all of these questions I cannot say we will have a that full picture that we are looking for.

I think at the center at our questions is one thing. FEAR! We are in fear that we will do all of these things and have the same result as we have had. This emotion is validated, I believe. A good friend and priest told us as we were preparing for marriage, “every emotion experienced is a gift from God, it is not evil or bad, but an experience. Every emotion should be validated.” I think that our fear is not one of “we will not become parents” but rather the fear of let down and the unknown of how our parent story will happen. It is our journey and we know as much as we want something it happen in our own timing it is does not always occur on our designated schedule.

The above portion of this blog is being written before our appointment. We plan to write the next portion after we have a chance to ask the questions.

After the appointment thoughts :

Frustration : that was the first of many feelings which we experienced at our appointment today. Why? Lack of prior knowledge. When we arrived at our treatment facility we were hit with information that we did not expect and did not agree with. Once we straightened out the misunderstanding and miscommunication we were able to get back into “game plan” mode. One feeling that continues throughout this process is frustration because of a lack of knowledge. No matter how much investigation we do it seems that there is always a blind corner that we encounter.

Timeline : It looks like there will be a few diagnostic tests that we will be doing in July. At the first part of August the doctors will be “hitting the reset button” on Cheryl’s cycle. (the nurse’s words not ours) Mid August we will start the cycle with the end of August “pumping Cheryl up”, retrieval, and then implantation some time that first week in September. Obviously this is tentative and depends on other factors, but it is the basic timetable.

The big take away that we both have gotten from today is a renewed determination to be parents. After leaving the RE’s office we talked about our feelings and experiences. We talked about timing and “meant to-bes”. One quote from Cheryl was that she feels a draw or calling towards adoption with or without success in fertility. Nick shared the excitement of the timing of this fertility journey coinciding with our experiences with engaged couples.

So many things on the horizon and at the end, a feeling of both hope and of relief for the time being. We are now on to work with the Engaged Encounter couples in Tucson!