Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Expanding our Family By Two

This post was originally posted on September 27, 2018 -----

First of all I want to say thank you for each and everyone that takes the time to stop by my blog. I am not sure how in detailed anyone reads my lengthy journal posts but if anyone has been following my blog then you have caught on that I have given details here and there about our current adoption process. Though I have not given too many details, I have given some through journal posts as well as by way of social media. A few day earlier with a possible match and some research into our current home study, it rests heavy on my heart to share more in depth our journey.

So let me take you back to the beginning of our new hopeful journey through private domestic adoption. Last April 2017, my hubby and I discussed extensively adding to our family again, not by one but by two.
Thus because as I have said in prior posts, I do not love or think odd numbers are great nor do they work in the universe. Hence TWO!

So we discussed together, as a family, faithfully prayed then reached out to an adoption consultant that came by way of referral but also just happened to start popping up in my social media news feed (maybe it is true social media knows what we are thinking..lol) No really, I truly do not think there are coincidences but subtle hints of things to come as there are reasons for everything in life. After many weeks of pondering, watching many posts, praying; I made contact. Lengthy one at that.
May 2017, I had our phone interview and spilled our life story. Not to forget the main reason, our reason of wanting to adopt TWO! Twins and how adamant I was that God had a plan for our family. Little did I know at the time, our journey was going to take us on a path that we would ever come to fathom. As we understood over the years adoption through the foster care system, we began to quickly learn the differences on the domestic side of things. Though we had an approved home study through our county, it was not the right home study. Therefore, we needed a new one, a correct one. As we searched via the internet a for an agency, a friend of mine, gave a referral to a local company. I made contact again. Thus, spilling our life story and our specific intentions of adopting two. Finally I felt we were on the right track, adoption consultant on board and new home study started and all going as planned. Well let me just say, after six months almost to the day from the day we made contact with the home study agency, we were informed that they could not finish due to an internal policy that nobody decided catch along with being told our social worker was inexperience though she had been in the field for fifteen plus years. Needless to say, they could not give anything in writing to support their decision. However they did provide a letter to refund our money but lets just say we are still waiting for our money.
So here the holidays are in full swing and we are back to the beginning in January 2018. Me being me, found a local company, again very upfront with our situation and here we go again, application for a new home started. All the while, props to our adoption consultant as their entire team stuck it out with us. Prayed for us, listened to me when I just needed to vent through whatever mounds of duplicate paperwork we needed to complete. Plus just their patience in the process that ended up being a little over fifteen months for us to become active with their consulting agency from the first day I made contact.
Now that we are in the active stage with a very specific home study but truly did not find out how specific until a few days ago when we had a possible match of “one”. We are hopeful to adopt two, we went into this hopeful to adopt Twins. Knowing that it is not always the plan; Twins not always easy to come by and if God had it in our path then it will be. However it was discussed that if Twins were not an option then it may be possible to do a back to back adoption as that may be a possibility. As we have been very open about wanting to adoption Twins, we would be just was open about the back-to-back adoption as well. We wrote a letter again; a synopsis of our life story and our intentions for adoption. Well as a possible match came, it made me question our home study thus we found that a back-to-back adoption is not as easy as we thought. Therefore, I came full forward again that EVERYTHING happens for a reason and we cannot force anything. We came into this process with a specific intention. TWINS! One that I saw clearly, I cannot change the rules as my husband says. We believe Twins will be a part of our family and our path of life. Since becoming active, we have been presented with thirty-four cases. Cases, expectant mothers, fathers and babies, that we prayed over everyone involved, some said yes to, some said no to but not one has been our Yes…our two yes’ are still out there!
“I prayed for this child/children” – Samuel 1:27
As much as I can say it has been an emotional roller coaster plus I am sure hardly nothing to what an expectant mother and/or father is and will be going through but I know all in all our little blessings (two) have not set forth on our path. Still firmly believing our Twins will make their way into our family. I fully understand that with adoption comes brokenness, sadness but also hopefulness, joy and a great love for one another. There is no easy answer in the adoption world, it is easy turn a blind eye to so many things but that is not a true picture of reality. Adoption is bittersweet and a true love all wrapped up in one.
“Adoption has the dimension of connection — not only to your own tribe, but beyond, widening the scope of what constitutes love, ties and family. It is a larger embrace. By adopting, we stretch past our immediate circles and, by reaching out, find an unexpected sense of belonging with others.” Isabella Rossellini
Until then our big crazy family will be waiting for the next TWO to make their arrival to further share and be a part of our love, laughter, adventures and day to day craziness.
GOD BLESS
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Our New Season - HomeSchool


This post was originally posted on August 3, 2018 ------

I write today with a feeling that a weight has been lifted off my shoulders but I really know that somewhere in the upcoming months the weight of my decision for our Littles to home school this new school year has only just begun. Whether good or not so good, it will be a Life Adventure that we will be doing together, head on, as a family. Got to say..nothing is better than that!


Let me take you back a bit, our Littles had a really rough year last year with our school district. Things happened that no one should have experienced let alone anyone under the age of five thus causing a non-stop dealing with the school district, teachers and aides. Adding to our already crazy daily life of every thing under the sun. I have to Blog school busadmit, I was very proud of myself as I was able to graciously advocate for my children and finish their year in the positive. However, it left me with this never-ending pit in my stomach. A constant questioning of what if’s for this year to come.
As our Littles each have Individualized Educational Plans (IEP’s), I knew somewhat how the upcoming year would look like, what each class would likely be, for the most part who was in what program and who was going to have what teachers. Getting right down to it, we live in a great school district. We moved specifically to be in this district along with our housing track to be within the zones of certain schools. We already have had three children graduate through this district with one of them utilizing additional services. So, really what is boils down to is that I lost faith and trust of the overall school system over the issues that happened last year. Now, not sure how to get that back.
Our children could have the best teachers this upcoming year, the programs could be the best but when you have witnessed issues and/or have proof of the happenings there is an internal inside battle almost like a real-time movie constantly on replay.
I began to tell myself, my daily stomach ache, would just go Blog Crazinessaway. However now that the new school year is fast approaching my “so-called” stomach ache really is not and my anxiety is through the roof. I gave myself a date to make hard decision and I DID!
I know I cannot control everything but I know that I can take minute by minute, day by day. Whereas, if I did not try to do what I felt was BEST for our children and to further feed what I knew was in my heart…I failed as their mother, caregiver, protector. So, in short, Home School here we come!
Blog HomeschoolingWe already have a busy schedule but life sometimes throws us curve balls or there comes a time where there is a fork in the road where the paths that we see are not always smooth and straight. Remembering the road with the most bumps and less traveled, sometimes has the best surprises!
Plus, I am lucky to have many friends in our life who home school to ask questions, to learn from, to lean on and just listen to me ramble. As I said before, I believe everything happens for a reason and God has a timing for everything.
Life is not perfect but knowing our children will be safe and will not be in the mindset they were last year is worth every moment of chaos for the time being. Right now, I do not have the right answer, needless to say I do know I can say home schooling maybe just a season or maybe it is meant for their entire school career. Nonetheless, I do know for a fact it is a minute by minute, a day by day routine. Honestly, that is all I can ask for from each one of them and from myself.  GOD BLESS
“We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face…we must do that which we think we cannot.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
Until Next Time….Make it a Great Day!
Julie

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Life is Hectic Enough...Our Verison of Taking a Moment to Enjoy The View

So it has been a couple of months since been last post. Speaking of my last post...it was from November. It was a bit of an collaboration with another wonderful woman of which I have grown to really know of social media. I have great admiration for her, her beliefs and her passion. Truthfully, I have not sat down to write in a while due to many things not because my mind has not been going a mile a minute but nothing really says sit down and write. I have many things that I could touch on but I have said it in previous post, I will only write to publish something if it is truly meaningful and not just because. My life, our life is what I put out for all to read, whether it is for one to view or many. It does not matter; it is there for the taking so it better mean something, right?

These last few months have been a true test. Lots of soul searching, praying, acceptance for the unknown, forgiveness, new adventures and most of all a bit of restructuring of our life. Having a large family will do this and especially if our large family will be growing by Two! Well, not sure with all large families but in our family it works. Thus with having a type-A personality, I have to admit, I want very much to be in control most of the time, well 99% of the time. However, I have come to understand that is not always possible. Especially within myself having CRPS (complex regional pain syndrome) not really possible considering my body has a mind of its own. My belief is now I tend to just deal with what comes my way. I decided a long time ago I would not let my disability define who I was though I would allow and accept it being a part of me. Boy did it change how I lived. My pain is real, that I wish I could explain in full detail what I feel. The best explanation that I have come close too is when you have a sunburn, get into the shower and the warm water hits your skin. The burning and tingling feeling, the pain and sensations is what my knee feels 24/7. I am only human but I have become a firm believer life is what you make of it and how your mind thinks plays a huge part of your process.

Along with my stuff, our children having special needs, my need for 99% for control is out the window. Now I say I have structure. This comes with a color coded calendar for day-to-day appointments and events along with just being a Family. Having CRPS does not stop me from being a Mom. My children came before and after my disability and my disability is not first to anyone. Believe me there is no day is perfect. There are days that nothing is going right according to the schedule and we just improvise, there are days that laundry does not get done or completely finished (secretly it is my least favorite thing in the world to do), we do take out for carpet picnics, the dishes may be in the sink a bit longer they should be but we Live, we Pray, we Love, we Laugh, we Cry and most importantly we are a Family while together we Work to Achieve, Support and Help one another. The one thing I have learned over the years is that you do not have to be doing something every minute of the day. There are moments to just sit back with your children and cherish that time together. Those moments spent together mean lifetime...away from technology, away from sports, away from the car, away whatever activity it maybe.

So through our hustle and bustle of our "crazy" day-to-day life, my crps, special needs from autism, epilepsy, cp, failure to thrive (eating issues) along with the developmental delays for the month we are discussing (medically and in therapies). Not to mention some insomnia; we continue to fight everything head on, research what we can and partner up as you can never learn enough from others. I will gladly take a moment to sit back, share the moment together as they come, learn what I can from all my children (big and little), cherish every minute as they do not stay little long, be thankful for my husband for his support for everyday that he commutes to work from our home to put milk and food on our table then comes home to do Dad Duty. Our Life is definitely a crazy roller coaster ride one which some may not understand. I respect that having a large family is not for everyone...however, there is this saying "don't knock it tell you try it" GOD BLESS

"Who does great and unsearchable things, Wonders without number" Job 5-9


Until Next Time...Make It A Great Day!

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Friday, November 17, 2017

Part Two - Our Great Big (Adoptive) Family

Part Two of Our Roller Coast Ride - Our Great Big (Adoptive) Family  
The story of us and how our journey continues to go....Thankful for everyday, as we continue to grow and learn more from one another as well as the ones around us. Never a dull moment and there is always a surprise or two. GOD BLESS!

In Case you Missed it - here is the link - Part One - Our Great Big (Adoptive) Family 

Until Next Time...Make it A Great Day!

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Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Part One - Our Great Big (Adoptive) Family


Our family has experienced many things through the foster care system while we have seen the many sides of the adoption process. I am completely honored to have written a little piece of our reality for RG Adoption Consulting. Part One was posted today! See link below.

Stay Tuned for Part Two.....GOD  BLESS!

Our Great Big (Adoptive) Family - Part 1


Until Next Time...Make it A Great Day!

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Sunday, November 5, 2017

November - Special Month of Awareness


Another year that seems to have flown by in a blink of an eye. This year has had many ups, downs, twist and turns on our roller coaster ride along with many exciting additions, new adventures and goals set for our future. The upside to having a large family is that most every month we have something going on; however, November brings many celebrations of anniversary's, birthday's and recognizing awareness of National Adoption Month, National CRPS/RSD Month and National Epilepsy Month. With that said, I cannot stress enough how differently this month holds a very special place in my heart. 


Our family grew again by way of adoption this year. As we went through the process this time; it was a bit different from previous adoptions due to our state having policy changes at the first of the year. During this adoption, I learned more about the social service system, other adoption and foster situations from fellow foster/adopt friends and most importantly from birth families. People ask me all the time "why we choose to stay in contact with our children's family"? The answer is a no-brainer for me. My response never waivers as I say, "it is their family and the last thing I would ever want is to not to keep contact". 

I must admit there are times the contact has become scarce on both sides with all our adopted families.  Reason...LIFE! Not so much for the updates or just sending a hello message but trying to get a visit in and working with everyone's schedule does not always work. This is where I am grateful for technology as without it I am not sure what would we all do. Nevertheless, without the choice that my husband and I made those many years ago to become foster parents never really thinking that we would adopt hard to believe that here we are FIVE adoptions later.
In return, what I have really learned that this path we are on is so beyond our control. Our journey is not over. Not one to never say never as life has so much to offer but when the rat race takes over I think we only see a glimpse of what is in store. Remember it is okay to hit your inner kid side and blow bubbles every now and again. It is fun and it is a form of therapy. You never know how strong you truly are until you are tested. We all have inner strength; it is just hidden and needs the will to come out.


As for our family, we embrace one another through all; the good and the not so good, and this month a bit more wholeheartedly. Where our path may lead, I do not have any idea but we are currently in the process of working with an adoption consultant for boy/girl twins. I totally understand that it may be a total impossible journey but I also believe if something is meant to happen it will. I also acknowledge that a large family does not fit everyone's cup of tea. For me it is something that even with my disability I have had to learn to navigate through the chaos of motherhood times eight and through it all in the end it is what my inner strength, my family, my faith, my honesty, my awesome support system, my drama free zone and my guardian angel (my mom) is what gets me through.

"Because a thing seems difficult for you, do not think it impossible for anyone to accomplish.” Marcus Aurelius

Plus, it helps being a bit OCD and not taking "no" for an answer most of the time....so on that note. Waking up each day, knowing I have figured the management of my disability and pain to a certain extent along with life has throwing plenty of curve balls but when you can bring families together through the way of adoption and maintain a relationship the payoff is beyond what I can express in a short story or a few words. For that there is no measure... GOD BLESS
So many of our dreams at first seem impossible, then they seem
improbable, and then, when we summon the will, they soon become inevitable.” Christopher Reeve

Until Next Time...Make it A Great Day!

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