Monday, February 28, 2011

NAMI (National Association for the Mentally Ill) Minnesota Update

Yet another resource -- here's their Legislative Update

National Children's Mental Health Day coming May 3

Check out more information about this here.


Click here to find out about three workshops being offered by Pacer:

Students with IEP's and Minnesota's Statewide Assessments

IDEA: Understanding the Special Education Process

Children Taking Medications for Behavioral and Mental Health Reasons

Let Me Introduce you to Someone

Sam doesn't know I'm doing this. He might not like me doing it. He's really not into self-promotion at all, but is simply intent on glorifying God in whatever he does.

He and his wife Vicki have been my friends since 1985. Wow. That's a long time. Vicki played in our wedding and Sam sang in a quartet -- and they have been mentors to me during various periods in my life.

Sam is now the Executive Pastor at Bethehem Baptist and has a blog. He has also just written a new book that is hot off the press. It's called Practicing Affirmation: God-Centered Praise of Those Who Are Not God. I haven't read it yet, so I can't tell you anything more about it other than that if Sam wrote it, it's good.

Jimmy and I had supper with Sam and Vic on Thursday night. It was so great to catch up and to talk They inspire me.

Maybe I won't tell him that I told you about him cuz like I said he isn't interested in self-promotion. But if you are a person of faith his writing will encourage you for sure.

For Me It's About a Good Start

If I can make myself get out to the Y in the morning my days always start better. I KNOW this is my secret -- but it's still hard for me to make myself get started again. Once I'm in the pattern of it then I do much better.

This morning I made it up and there by 5 and was home by 6:30 feeling ready for all kinds of things. I had a tough transition personally when Bart left yesterday -- he hasn't been gone for months and I wasn't interested in him going -- even though I've had a break a couple times a month for the last several. Funny how I don't have a problem going myself -- just don't like being left!

But I have given myself a talking to and I am doing a bit better.

I am messing with the cover for my next book. If you are interested in graphic design and would like to give me some input you can email me and I'll send you the link. I am sold on the concept -- but it needs tweaking I think.... I'm not detail oriented so any feedback would be welcomed.

Some of the kids asked to be awakened earlier this morning and that seems to be working out (I wasn't sure it would).

And it's one degree outside. One. Why?

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Sunday Morning Once Again

Yesterday was quite a busy day. The new agency where I work was having a support group family party and that took up most of the day. Ricardo and Leon finished 5th and 6th in the section for wrestling last night and now their season is over. I missed the second day, but was there Friday night.

John had court Friday -- looks like there will be more jail time beginning the end of March because of a minor probation violation (this is from the incident two years ago when he was 18 and had a minor girlfriend). I can see this two ways -- there is certainly nothing redemptive about the system, but I also know that he has always had the view that no rules apply to him. In fact, their whole sibling group shares that bent.

Last night I had to go pick up Sadie in the middle of the night because she had gone somewhere not having a ride home (she has chosen this as a consequence -- to not have us provide rides, but instead of just not going places she gets herself stranded). She had no coat, it was hovering around zero, and she didn't even know the address of where she was. I met her at a fast food place near there. Her stubbornness will lead to tragedy if I don't figure out a way to curb it.

I could go on -- there are kids facing some consequences -- natural and imposed -- in our efforts to prepare them for adulthood.

There is some good news on the horizon -- it looks like Jimmy will have a job after graduation which is HUGE. He has done so well in his Special Ed work program that they want to keep him on. And Rand has qualified for vocational rehab services so he should be participating in a job try this coming month.

My husband is leaving from today until Thursday and I'm not looking forward to that. I've been way off track lately -- just not feeling myself and making dumb choices about what I eat, how much I exercise and how I spend my time, so I'm feeling a bit unprepared to do this alone.

But I have no choice. And you know me, I cycle back and forth to the point that reading my blog must be similar to a cat watching a ping pong game....

I'm sure I"ll get my groove back. Too bad it can't go to Jamaica like Stella to do so.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Trying not to Make Minor Things Major

There are a whole bunch of little things this morning that are driving me crazy. Things of mine that were "Borrowed" without asking while I was gone, kids who refuse to do their chores (but we're unveiling a new plan for that). People who take advantage of the fact that I'm gone to do stuff they shouldn't. People stealing each other's stuff. Etc.

I think that one of my survival skills is to not make minor things major. But today I'm really finding them to be annoying.... so I'm trying to take deep breaths and realign my thinking so I don't have to kill anyway.

(hyperbole folks, hyperbole)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

My Reponse to a Troubling Email

Yesterday as I was in my hotel, having traveled for several hours, after most people are relaxing and enjoying their hotel room, I was pounding out emails about waiting kids. When I told a family that was not registered with our agency that I could not pass on contact info for a 2 year old I received a troubling email.

This is a shame because it should be about getting children homes and not about control.

I emailed back asking if she would like me to explain the whole thing, to which I received the response that she had already adopted many times and didn't need anyone to explain how the whole thing worked.

I wrote back and apologized if she felt I was insulting her and asked her forgiveness. But I wanted to explain it all to her so that she would know that it is not all about control for me. But since she apparently isn't interested, I think I'll explain it to you to get it off my chest. Grant it, you might not be interested either, but you can easily stop reading.

During the month of February I have posted 60 situations about children to our network that I have received from social workers. It takes me about 15 minutes to post a situation, and if it received a lot of response, about an hour to do all the follow up on each one. While I currently do get paid, I spent years doing the same thing as a volunteer. If you know me very well at all you know that I am passionate about finding homes for kids.

So, why won't I pass on contact info of social workers to families? Let me explain.

Back in 2003 I started speaking to social workers and I met some very great people who are incredibly overworked. With caseloads of anywhere from 25-50 kids each, they are swamped. Not only do they have to find families for these kids, but they also serve as their social worker -- making monthly visits, coordinating staffings at RTCs, at times attending IEP meetings, doctors appointments, etc. I think you're getting the picture.

At that point I understood why workers weren't able to answer everyone's phone call. Most of the workers have several very difficult cases of teenagers, but once and a while they will get an "easy" kid -- a child under 5. If that is the case, all of the sudden they have hundreds of families interested. People are calling and competing and studies are coming in in droves. They are overwhlemed.

So yes, it is about control. It is about controlling the time of social workers for their "easy" cases, so that they have time to focus on the harder cases -- the ones closer to 18 who may age out.

I could go on about this forever, but at the risk of making more people angry, let me simply say this.

I understand if you would like to have a child under 5. Most people who are looking to adopt would. But there just aren't that many out there. So the huge competition for these kids is huge and sometimes can be quite unfriendly.

The kids under five will get homes. They will most likely find homes for them in their own state or possibly even in their own county. And while I'm not going to refuse to help a worker asking for help for a child that young, they aren't going to be my focus.

SO I guess the bottom line is that maybe it is a bit about control -- but the control is not about this being a lucrative business (another accusation in the 2nd email) because AAN is a non profit and charges no fees. It's about controlling the privacy and time of overworked social workers so that they have time for the older children who have been waiting for years.

I wrote a free ebook about the whole matching process that you can download here if you are interested....

So my response to the troubling email regarding philosophy is above. It helps my emotional response which I always have when I get criticized when I'm working so hard. But I'm not asking for sympathy or anything -- just understanding. And I usually get that from y'all :-)

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

So, here's how it all went....

I went to Best Buy to get a new mouse because I needed one desperately and went to lunch with Bart and when I came home -- 54 emails, and only four of them were people messing with me because I said I had an empty in box....

I spent yesterday at my desk -- filing paperwork and getting organized, finishing up the last of what I had to do for taxes. The desk is just about cleaned up and I am almost caught up on paperwork.... which if you have lots of kids you know hardly ever happens...

So I'm feeling pretty good as I leave town this morning -- heading to Duluth today and either coming back home Thursday night or Friday night, depending on if a training I am supposed to do is cancelled.

I always feel much better taking off when I know I can come home to a tidy office...

And just in case you are wondering, I worked real hard last night to catch back up on my email. I would love to stay on top of it for a few days because the feeling I have when it's under control is amazing...

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Empty In Box

For the first time in at least six months! I'm going to go celebrate.

And wait for the smart ones in my life to fill up my box just to spite me ;-)

First Thing in the Morning

Apparently Isaac likes to get up a bit earlier than his mother so some mornings she'll bring his very happy self in to my office so that she can sleep a little longer. This morning he is VERY happy and is making all kinds of sounds, and moving his arms and legs. He makes a coo that sounds a lot like "Hi!" and it's so adorable.

He's interrupting my attempts to finish a couple of signs about bathroom and laundry etiquette that will more than likely only make me feel better for writing them.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Success of Loving

Facebook can often be a black whole of time. I have almost 1000 friends and at least 850 of them are live people I have met in person over the years -- the rest are you guys -- people who have met me through my speaking, writing and blogging.

Today though I clicked from a comment one of my friends made to the page of someone I don't even know and read this quote

"The success of love is in the loving - it is not in the result of loving. Of course it is natural in love to want the best for the other person, but whether it turns out that way or not does not determine the value of what we have done."

Mother Theresa said it. And she said it much better than I could say it. But especially when it comes to our kids -- "our kids" meaning the ones we have chosen to love through adoption.

I don't think I need to comment on it. It speaks for itself.

And this time the Facebook black whole journey was very productive.

Saturday, February 19, 2011


Today is planned from start to finish-- Powerpoint for church, getting a perm (my hair is even starting to bother me, which means it has probably been bothering my family and friends for weeks), spending time with a friend of mine and her daughter who are int he adoption process, getting the rest of the tax stuff done, helping Courtney with her taxes, attending the Spaghetti Dinner that the youth are doing at church, finishing up whatever didn't get done before then, and falling into bed exhausted.

Last night a couple of frustrating situations with kids not being where they were supposed to be had me stressed, but for some reason just a few minutes with the little guy in this picture can bring my blood pressure down. He's 4 months already and he and I have very lengthy conversation. He is so animated when he coos and gurgles -- his facial expressions change all the time and he's now starting to move his arms while he talks like an Italian. ;-)

Am hoping to find my rhythm soon so that I can keep caught up and get back to more serious blogging as well as spending more time with my kids. In 2 years three of them will be looking at graduation, leaving only 3 more in school! Time is going by too fast!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Getting Back into a Vehicle

Travelling up to St. Paul today for a couple meetings -- leaving as soon as I take the kids to school.

I haven't written about the kids much -- because nothing major is happening. But we have several little things going on -- testing of boundaries -- and the kids grades are not nearly up to their potential. We aren't sure what more we can do -- we could force them with many consequences but at what point in time does internal motivation have to occur. By the time a kid is 15 or 16 it's time for them to start caring more about their own lives than we are.

The problem if they don't get it now -- is that we will have a houseful of unemployed adults with no subsidy that we are trying to support. Not quite what we signed up for.

If young adults don't qualify for services but can't find jobs, can't go to college, and possibly can't graduate, where do they end up?

I'm wondering how many kids adopted from foster care have a smooth transition to productive adulthood....

Any stories out there like that? If you have more than one kid -- what is the percentage of your kids that transitioned well to adulthood?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Coming and Going

if you could see me and how badly I need a haircut, you would realize that I'm busy beyond measure!

You can check out Kari's blog post today to see some of our news -- why should I rewrite it?

Appointment with our accountant for taxes is in an hour and I THINK I have everything compiled correctly. Now watch -- she will send us home with a list of 20 things we still need to do....

I've been in and out and all over MN the last couple days -- today home -- but taxes.

Also, I didn't win the writing contest so we will be self publishing the book. Right now it looks like the title will be:

A Glimpse of God's Heart: How Trying to Change My Kids Changed Me.

Goal is to have it printed and here by APril 7th when I am speaking at a women's conference....

SO much to do -- and I love it all -- but SO LITTLE TIME!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Adoptees Have Answers -- Webinars and Newsletter

Here's the newsletter. It talks about some interesting webinars...

Ok, not quite -- Tax Discount!

Wanted to pass this along

On my Way Out the Door

Spent the night in a hotel last night after three home visits -- all of them enjoyable. Now I'm heading to my office en route to another visit.

The Zero Kids Waiting newsletter this month has a bunch of interesting adoption news it in that certainly goes beyond Minnesota Check it out here.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Exciting Valentine's Night

Bart and I had a wonderful lunch together and exchanged sentiments earlier in the day, but by evening we chose to watch Isaac so John could take Courtney to a movie. That kid! he was the fussiest he has ever been -- I think maybe some tummy issues -- but I finally had him all calmed down just before they got home. Courtney took him and put him in her lap and then he couldn't keep his eyes off me -- smiling and giggling. It was as though he said -- Ha ha ha. NOW I'm going to be good.

ANd I took this second picture to prove to those of you who think otherwise that snow is not always beautiful!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Simply because you haven't seen him for a while

Edgy Makes Us Edgy

There are three definitions of edgy according to Mirriam Webster:

1. having an edge : sharp

2. being on edge : tense, irritable

3. having a bold, provocative, or unconventional quality

Today I've been thinking about how doing things that are number 3 makes us number 2.

I was going to be a bit more vague, but I think these guys could handle this being public, so if they find it -- hi guys!

Four years ago a couple 8th graders who were in classes with Salinda and Jimmy were here in our basement hanging out with Mike who is a good 4-5 years older than they are. They all came up from the basement hungrier than was explainable naturally and reeking of pot smoke. They consumed an entire loaf of bread made into toast within 10 minutes... and I was laughing simply because they thought they were hiding the obvious. This is my first clear memory of the guys.

Lately one of them, and later joined by the other, have started attending our church. They are very rough around the edges having had a pretty hard go of it the last four years. They have been addicted (might still be) to substances and had some things on their record. At least one has graduated from high school and is currently homeless, the other I haven't gotten all the details from.

They showed up for church yesterday morning and were out on the church steps, puffing on something that was either a very tiny cigarette or something else. I gave them a look that at least moved them down the block to finish up -- but they came in on time, sat through first service, stayed for second service, and didn't get into trouble in between.

I pulled them aside, looked them both in the eye and said, "I want you guys to come out to lunch with us. But my kids think you are cool and they will do whatever you do. So no smoking. Not even cigarettes. Can you make it?"

Very eagerly they promised me they could and they were VERY grateful -- expressing it multiple times. One of them even asked me for a hug because he was going through a hard time. After lunch I gave him my cell number and watched him put it into his phone. I told him to text me if he needed anything.

But many parts of the day I found myself nervous and edgy. I wondered if their presence was bothering others. I worried about what they might do next. But they handled themselves very well and I was proud of them.

Sometimes we have to do edgy things even if they make us edgy. If Jesus would have been around yesterday, he would have sat by those two in church, no doubt in my mind. He was drawn to those on the edges -- those who society had pushed off to the side.

Adopting from foster care is edgy and it makes us edgy for years. Reaching out to people who might make me uncomfortable is still a struggle sometimes even though I've lived this way a long time.

But just because something is hard doesn't mean we shouldn't do it. Do you have something edgy that you know you need to do but the idea of how uncomfortable it might make you keeps you from it?

Dive into edgy! It might be cold, but once you get used to the water, it's a really great place to swim.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

This is Why....

If people wonder why I'm losing my mind, this is a vivid example. Last night one of my children (between the ages of 14 and 19) was getting paid to do chores. They charged me for an hour of time to clean the shower and this was what it looked like AFTER it was "cleaned."

This is the same child who stole his former only friend's ipod, asked him what the code was to get it open, and then denied taking it.

Getting a better understanding of my mental condition?

Friday, February 11, 2011


Bart and I are hoping to plan some kind of a getaway with the kids once we get our tax refund back. But it is turning out to be a very complex experience to get everyone's schedule coordinated. Every time we think we have a few days figured out we end up having to change our minds.

So we are continuing to juggle everything trying to get it set up.... but here's hoping....

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Behavior Problems: Suspension, Expulsion, and IEPs

Interesting stuff about this topic here.

NAMI MInnesota Update

Click here for the National Alliance on Mental Illness News Update from Minnesota.

The Word for the Day

As Kari and I walked out of the Y this morning I asked Justin, our favorite front desk guy what the "Word of the Day" was. He said, Cold. BORING I told him. He said, So what is the word of the day? I told him I was counting on him to provide it so I could blog it.

He said "Diversion." I said, "What do you mean?" He replied, "You know, putting your problems onto someone else." I was momentarily offended thinking he meant that that was the purpose of my blog when all he was saying was that he had used diversion to get me to think of my own word of the day.

But looking at the definitions I realized that we often, as adoptive parents, use diversion... or at least we should. Here are the four defintions:

1. the act of diverting from a specified course

2. Chiefly Brit an official detour used by traffic when a main route is closed

3. something that distracts from business, etc.; amusement

4. (Military) Military a feint attack designed to draw an enemy away from the main attack

As adoptive parents we look for diversions from our own lives -- we find something that keeps us sane, whether it is other adoptive parents, time at the gym, good books or TV shows we enjoy, or simply taking a long walk or a bubble bath. If we do not do these things, we run ourselves ragged. We need diversions.

We also use diversions quite often with our children. Kids with ADHD are easy to divert and a meltdown can be avoided simply by changing the subject. Bart is excellent at that with Dominyk. Dominyk will head down one of his ADHD/OCD paths and Bart will ask him a totally unrelated question which makes him forget he was getting ready to have a meltdown.

In fact, we can make a lot of progress by thinking ahead and creating diversions. I'm sure you do it all the time in parenting tough kids.

So the word for today, according to Justin, is Diversion. See if you can find ways to apply that word to your lives and then let me know how it goes. It would make Justin proud. ;-)

TAXES. Need I say more?

Yesterday morning I decided to devote my morning to getting our tax stuff ready for the accountant. However, I did something really stupid -- I had 12 spreadsheets open at once, one for each month and I was entering receipts (That isn't the stupid part). But I had to run to the doctor at 11 and when I left, I closed my computer laptop. Apparently instead of putting the computer to sleep it shut it down instead and I had neglected to save several of the spreadsheets. Thus, my afternoon was spent redoing what i had done in the morning.

By this time I was a bit too crabby to blog.....

Today I'm heading over to my new office to spend the day getting things done in a different environment. If I switch things up a bit I tend to get more done...

Maybe along the way today I'll come up with something brilliant to share with you. Here's hoping...

Monday, February 07, 2011

MOFAS newsletter

Click here to see the Minnesota Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome February Newsletter.

A Great Weekend

We got home yesterday around 2:30 -- nearly perfect driving conditions both ways -- had dinner out Saturday night with our friends -- a very fun time. Drove home all day yesterday and when we arrived Bart and I snuck out for a couple hours while the kids watched the super bowl. Very nice to reconnect quietly. We need to do it again.

Now it's Monday morning -- Tony had strep throat this past weekend and now Wilson isn't feeling well. Everyone else seems to be OK and they are buzzing around getting ready for school. Monday mornings the buzz is very quiet -- they all seem to be very tired.

Another day at the desk toady -- I'm thinking I might actually get caught up on email today -- something that hasn't happened for ages...

But first, the ride to school......

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Gotta Love It

I'm sitting in a Panera in a suburb of Kansans City having a delightful time. For some reason this trip so far has been great.

First of all, I have had some fun with Sadie and Sara. Not silly wild fun... nor anything intentional .. .but just relaxed ease and conversations that flowed. The trip went surprisingly fast and we made good time.

Secondly, our hosts are wonderful. We are staying with people I have known a long time. Kevin went to youth camp with me when I was 12 -- I've known him that long -- and I met Renee when I was 19. We're all pushing 50 -- some of us harder than others Kevin -- but it's been so fun to see them -- meet their kids who are Jr. and Sr. in high school that I had not previously met, and stay in their beautiful home.

Renee, a native of South Africa, has a huge heart for orphan adoption and it is fun to see how we have arrived at a similar passion after heading in very different directions as couples.

And finally, I have just enjoyed the perspective I always get when I drive and when I am in new places. Being in larger cities always reminds me of the overwhelmingly huge number of people out there who have busy lives and who are in many ways so similar to me and in many other ways so different. For example, I am sitting next to a table of women who are planning activities for several girl scout troops. Last night I was in a coffee shop while the girls attended the first session of the Revolve Tour and experienced Kansas City night life for the upper class. Starbucks is open until midnight and was packed at 9:30. I don't even think there is a coffee shop in our town open past 9...

I love getting away and thinking and evaluating my life from afar. It always gives me motivation and vision and calms me down from being caught up in the crazy drama of our home. And having a husband who is willing to allow me to do this and who capably handles everything alone is a tremendous gift.

I'm thinking about sending out an email to promote my speaking again. These times away are so important and the things that I share with workers and parents so important that the word needs to be out. I'm horrible at self-promotion.

Hey wait, you can help me! Have you all seen this page about my speaking topics? Check it out and if you have some connections, I'd love to come somewhere where YOU live!

Friday, February 04, 2011

heading to REvolve

leaving in a few minutes for Kansas City for the revolve tour with Sadie and her friend Sara.

Need to go warm up the car....

didn't want anyone to think something happened to me if I didn't blog today!

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Therapy and Evaluations

One of the most significant pieces used in the matching process between match and placement is the Psch Eval. Families are given this document to help them decide whether or not they would like to adopt a child. Now, there are many birth kids out there who are diagnosable, but parents often do not take them to a psychologist. They learn their kids from birth, manage their behaviors, and everything is kept within a reasonable space so that they have no need for intervention.

However, children in foster care have to have psych evals. Their diagnoses qualify them for services, get them moved up a level as far as difficulty of care so that their foster parents can be paid more, or get them into a residential setting. Even if a child is doing well later, their prior diagnoses are listed per history.

Psych evaluations (we just had them done for Tony and Dominyk a couple weeks ago and got Tony's results last week and will get Dominyk's today) are based on history provided by care givers and a series of tests. These tests take a couple hours to give. Most pscyh evaluations are done within 30 minutes to 3 hours. In fact, John met with an D.O. once about six years ago. He met with John for 20 minutes and me for 15. He diagnosed him with nothing but attachment issues and stated that he lived in a home with two many children. Interestingly this was the opinion of the workers in our county who had filed a CHIPS because we wouldn't pick him up after he ran away multiple times saying he needed intensive help. ANyway, I digress...

My point is this. The opinion of one person, backed up by the opinions of professionals with an agenda and caregivers with an agenda, that takes 30-120 minuets to spend with a child, shouldn't be the basis for saying no to a child. Add to that the cooperation or lack there of of the child, and the results can be less than accurate. I have placed many children who were diagnosed bi-polar in another state. In MN it is not good practice to diagnose anyone under 18 with Bi-polar. WIthin months these kids have been taken off bipolar meds and function better without them. In fact John, who was on similar medications, has functioned much better since he turned 18 and refused to take anything.

So this morning we are going to head to the psychologist to hear what they have to say about Domniyk. Tony's evaluation was interesting -- most of it I had guessed ahead of time, but he had not taken things seriously and thus some for the tests lacked validity. I can pretty much guess what Dominyk's is going to say as well. But we wanted ot have them done in case we have to seek further services for them -- then we will have documentation.

Feel free to comment if you have had experiences with a child who doesn't look anything like what their psych eval said once they were placed in your home. I'm interested to hear if anyone has similar experiences...

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Upcoming event in Mankato

FASD Day on the Hill

Check out information about this event to be held in March in St. Paul, MN

It's So Funny... How We Don't Talk Anymore

Has anybody else noticed this? We don't socialize as much as we used to 20 years ago. And I'm not talking about "us" as adoptive families who have nobody who wants to invite us over because we have too many kids -- I'm talking about "us" as a society.

Twenty years ago I was single but I had a lot of married friends. And we hung out together a LOT. Almost every weekend night of the year I was either at someone's house or they were at mine. We played games. We played cards. We talked. We shared life with each other -- we were closely following each others lives -- the ups and the downs -- and we felt each other's pain and shared each other's joy. Now I just like someone's facebook status.

What has happened to people genuinely meeting face to face to share life? To "break bread" together? To connect in meaningful ways? We are all so busy, wrapped up in our own journeys, that we don't take time to get involved in others.

But the richness of life is in the stories of other people! The depth, the marrow so to speak, of life itself is in the digesting of the narratives of the people around us. They make us richer, they make us stronger, they make us healthier. Knowing your story makes mine make more sense.

Yes, we have blogs. Yes, we have Facebook. We have instant messaging and email and twitter and a host of other avenues in which we can click our way through other people's lives. But it just isn't the same thing is it?

I have had a theory about my social life since I was a teenager. I believe that the ball is always in my court. I don't wait around for someone to invite me to do something - I do the inviting. But lately I haven't made time to do that as much and I need to.

Sure, I"ll keep commenting on blogs. And I'll keep updating my status on Facebook if I have time. But I want the depth of the real thing.

Have you experienced the same changes in your life? Isn't it up to our generation to demonstrate to our kids that it is more fun to be together in reality than it is virtually? Or have we given up on them getting it?

I challenge you to get together IN PERSON with someone in the next 2 weeks and ask some questions and get to know more of their story. I'm sure you'll be glad you did.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Feedback for a Blog Friend

Any body who has time and interest should head over and read Kathleen's posts. She is preparing a presentation on the role of support groups, and especially churches, in supporting adoptive families. She is seeking comments on her blog posts. There is one here and another one here.

The first post and one topic of the presentation is how outsiders don't necessarily see things as they really are in the family,and how sometimes such outsiders can hinder family attachment and the child's healing. She's made a table correlating RAD symptoms and other behaviors as how they may look to outsiders, vs. how they look to us.
The other post is some of the truly unhelpful things that people say to adoptive parents, and some suggestions for better approaches.

She's also going to be developing information about the spiritual-emotional-psychological aspects of supporting the family; practical aspects like providing respite, helping with home repairs, providing appropriate child care so parents can actually GET to church, why Sunday school classes and youth group activities may not be appropriate for many adopted kids, and more.

She is asking for input and I know no better people than you to provide it....

Adopting Teens Retreat in MN

I have registration forms if you want to email me. maeflye at mac dot com.

Free MNADOPT Webinar with Rick Delaney on Thursday

Looks good and would probably count for training hours. Don't even think you need to be in MN! ANd if you haven't heard Dr. Delaney he has been around a LONG time and has incredible insight into the minds of kids like ours...

Check it out.

Finding my Rhythm

I am hoing that this is the week I find my rhythm. January was full of so many changes. New job, new diet, new routines at home... and I have had trouble getting things straight. For the first time in my life I signed up for something I couldn't follow through with! I really wanted to attend a Bible Study for women at church but it was on Thursday nights and eight and by the time I got to Thursday I was ready for bed by 8:30!

Hopefully I have a better handle on things in February. I'm still getting most of what I need to do done, but I'm finding myself on unsure footing.... I think today might be the day that I head back in.

It's a new month! How did everyone do on their new years resolutions? Please don't ask about mine! I'm ready to blow up Lifetick for sending me all the reminders of how I"m not doing what I hoped to. Guess I might just go turn them off.

Please tell me you're doing better than I am....