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Category: Make a Difference Mondays

Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysSep. 18, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | I Can’t Convince Anyone to Be a Foster Parent

A few years ago, we were scheduled to go onstage at church and talk about our experience as foster parents. We were only three months into this foster care gig…and why wouldn’t we be the perfect couple to speak into a microphone and convince others to follow in our footsteps? When asked, I didn’t realize it would end up being on a morning where everything felt so hard. Our 4 ½-year-old foster son was still wearing diapers. He would hide and poop, despite all our best efforts to potty train and bribe and encourage and incent. He was a trauma […]

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Children in Foster Care, Family Support, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysSep. 11, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | Fostering is a Family Affair: Thank You for Venturing with Us!

When Joel and I signed our contract to be foster parents through the state of Kentucky, we didn’t realize that we were also signing the names of all of our family members and close friends. Although they did not know it at the time, our decision to do foster care was their decision to do foster care. Though they initially sat before us a little wide-eyed at our decision to open our home for foster care, from the moment our little guy was placed into our arms they have given themselves wholeheartedly as papa, grandma, auntie, uncle, cousin and dear […]

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Adoption, Children in Foster Care, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysSep. 4, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | 6 Things To Know About Foster-Adoption

My husband and I entered the world of foster-adopt with a narrow no frame of reference to prepare us. We only wanted to be parents. After infertility and a failed infant adoption, we thought foster-adopt would be the quickest path toward our desire. We knew foster care would be difficult, but we had no idea… no idea just how difficult it would be. There seems to be an overall lack of knowledge in the general public regarding foster care and foster-adopt. This can cause misunderstandings that may seem insignificant to those outside the world of foster-adopt, but to those living […]

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Encouragement, Family Support, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysAug. 28, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | What About Anger Toward My Child’s Birth Parent?

We talk often about forming positive relationships with birth families. But what do you do when you can’t get past the anger you feel toward them? If you know us, you know we are strong advocates for open adoption. We often write and speak in favor of open relationships with a child’s birth family. In our own family we have regular contact with biological parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and even brothers and sisters. We feel that if it is possible and safe to have an open relationship with a child’s birth family, you should. Often when we talk about respecting […]

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Adoption, Children in Foster Care, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysAug. 21, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | Let’s Talk About Family Planning

This is a peek inside the kinds of conversations we have in our family every day. It’s not always comfortable for either of us, but it’s important that we both trust each other enough to be honest. 💙 Mom, do I have to be in adoption. Yeah, buddy, you do. Foster care wasn’t meant to be forever. Can you tell me why you don’t want to be adopted? 💙 I don’t want to be in adoption because I want to live with my first mom. Okay, so living with first mom is plan A. And if plan A is not […]

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Children in Foster Care, Education, Make a Difference MondaysAug. 14, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | What is Therapeutic Foster Care?

When a child enters the foster care system in the United States, often the child’s functional, emotional, and behavioral needs are not fully known at initial placement. After the needs of the child are determined and if the child is in need of a higher level of care, the child may be referred to what is called “therapeutic foster care.” In some states and agencies, this may also be referred to as “specialized homes,” or “treatment foster care.” Sometimes, when people hear the word “therapeutic,” they think it refers to medical foster care. While some of the children in therapeutic […]

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Children in Foster Care, Family Support, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysAug. 7, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | 6 Ways to Structure Your Life So You Have Time to Help a Child Heal from Trauma

You want to bring a child who needs a home into your family, but you know that your pace of life is too crazy to invest much time into that child. Unless the placement of the child into your home is an emergency kinship situation, I strongly suggest that you evaluate your lifestyle and restructure where you can. If you don’t know where to begin, here are six ideas: Remember Your Role When you decided to foster or adopt, you made a commitment to that child. Part of that commitment was to help your child heal from their past. Part […]

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Children in Foster Care, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysJul. 31, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | Parenting Should-Haves: Mamas — Give Yourself Some Grace

“Mom, J was saying mean things about you and dad yesterday on the bus. He told people you say the F-word and that you don’t feed him for five days. He’s lying. He lied.” I can always count on my daughter to be honest. But, for the love, we were six blocks from the kids’ school, running late, and my coffee was cold. At that moment, I didn’t have the emotional capacity to process something so significant. Immediately, from the back seat, J piped up, “Someone ELSE said that about their parents. Not me.” I tried to remain calm while […]

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Encouragement, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysJul. 24, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | If Foster Care is Hard, You’re Probably Doing it Right

I remember the moment. The four of us were all sitting on the kitchen counters eating cereal at ten p.m. (or it might have been ice-cream. . . we were young and stressed) debriefing about the events of the day. We were all recent college graduates in our early twenties who were responsible for the day-in and day-out love and nurture of 7 boys, mostly teens and preteens. Boys who had come from trauma. Boys who couldn’t safely live with their parents. Boys who brought their unhealthy coping skills and beautiful smiles into this house designed to be their home […]

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Children in Foster Care, Encouragement, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysJul. 17, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | When You Understand Trauma, You Understand A Whole New World.

It took us a while to get there, but after years of parenting children from traumatic places, we finally had our eyes opened up. It became a game-changer for us, and our parenting. There are only 3 things I would go back in time and change if I had the power to do so. The first was field day in 6th grade. The event was cancelled due to rain and all students who decided not to come to school were excused. But I didn’t know this so I got on the bus anyways. Fail! The second was when I began my first […]

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