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The Forgotten PodcastMay. 22, 2017

Season 3, Episode 1 | Helping Your Foster and Adoptive Kids Tell Their Story

Many foster and adoptive parents are unsure of the best strategy regarding when and how much information to tell a child about their background, or their “story.” As adults, we need to initiate the conversation. It’s our job to tell, not their job to ask. –Jayne Schooler Talking with kids about their story Tapestry Books provides some excellent resources to help start discussions, and these discussions need to start early. According to Jayne, “Adoptive and foster parents and their children need to become comfortable with the topic very early—when the children are toddlers.” Of course, the child’s story should be told […]

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Children in Foster Care, Forgotten Fridays, Foster ParentingMay. 19, 2017

Forgotten Friday | My Daughter Has Her Birth Mother’s Eyes.

Yesterday we took our daughter to meet her birth mother for the first time in her (almost) 15 years of life. We were all nervous, anxious, and excited. But I had no idea I would be moved to tears. The wind was whipping down the corridors of buildings along 16th street in downtown Indianapolis. Although the sun was shining bright, it was cold. A typical late December day in Indiana. I eased the car into a spot across the street from the vintage coffee shop we were meeting in, turned the ignition off, and turned to look at my daughter […]

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Adoption, Children in Foster Care, Forgotten Fridays, Foster ParentingMay. 12, 2017

Forgotten Friday | Beauty from Ashes

I never thought I would make it to a Mother’s Day that my heart didn’t ache for my momma. Honestly, I thought it would always be a bittersweet reminder…a day to praise God for what I had but at the same time a day to mourn what was taken. This year is different for me. I had hope that one day I would understand, but I thought it might be 10,000 years from now. Instead, it’s today. This year is the year I KNOW that God is always good, always sovereign. He sometimes allows terrible things to happen, because He […]

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The Forgotten PodcastMay. 8, 2017

Season 2, Encore Episode | Foster Care, Adoption, Runaway: The Story of One Child’s Reality

Join us for this Encore Episode of Jami’s conversation with Emma Williams. Emma lived in several foster care and adoptive family situations as a child. Her story will give you amazing insight into the sometimes hard realities facing children in foster care. I remember getting in the back of a police car and looking at her while she was standing there watching us drive away…and then I remember waking up in a shelter the next day. Emma’s Early Years—How She Got into Foster Care Emma’s first experience in foster care was the result of her mother’s attempt to protect Emma and her brother […]

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Children in Foster Care, Forgotten Fridays, Foster ParentingMay. 5, 2017

Forgotten Friday | All the difference.

Foster care isn’t what I thought. But of course it isn’t. Expectations rarely meet the breadth and depth of human experience. Trauma leaves a greater mark than I knew on these little ones. And that leaves a greater mark on me. But hope remains. Both my own limited personal experience and Harvard’s quantitative study confirm it. Naturally, Harvard says it best: When confronted with the fallout of childhood trauma, why do some children adapt and overcome, while others bear lifelong scars that flatten their potential? A growing body of evidence points to one common answer: Every child who winds up […]

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Children in Foster Care, Make a Difference MondaysMay. 1, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | And Then It Got Real: My First Foster Care Experience

It started when our local Baptist Association hosted an Easter egg hunt for foster families. They were kind enough to include prospective foster parents for the event, so I was attended as well. After parking near the other cars, I watched as foster moms pulled up in minivans and mega-vans and SUVs, most with multiple kids of different races piling out. I smiled as little ones toddled around with Easter baskets bigger than they were, thinking about how real this whole thing was becoming. These were blue-eyed and brown-eyed and chubby-cheeked darlings, no longer case studies or statistics. Here were […]

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Advocacy, Forgotten Fridays, Foster ParentingApr. 28, 2017

Forgotten Friday | Can I Ask You Something? (Single Mom Edition)

The nurse and doctor exchanged a look—the kind of look that said, “Are you going to explain this to her, or should I?” We had been making small talk about my son—what grade he was in, the kinds of books he likes, and the silly things he says—before she started asking me about my medical history. Being a life-long single, I answered one of the most personal questions with “never.” That’s when I derailed her. It’s cool, y’all. I know how this works. I know where babies come from. Because L. is “peach” (as he says) like me, people assume […]

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Children in Foster Care, Encouragement, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysApr. 24, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | Foster Moms

Foster moms, Two years ago I didn’t know anything about you, what you were capable of, your level of perseverance, or the wide range of emotions your heart fought every day. Two years ago I looked at you with admiration and anticipation… Because two years ago I sat and I waited… and waited and waited and waited on the arrival of our first long-term foster placement. Today that baby boy I was waiting to meet is much more than a long-term foster placement. He is my son. We experienced so much in the year and a half between the day we […]

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Adoption, Children in Foster Care, Forgotten Fridays, Foster ParentingApr. 21, 2017

Forgotten Friday | 7 Ways You Are Making Parenting a Foster or Adopted Child Hard

Parenting might be the hardest thing in the world. And if you bring a child into your home who isn’t your biological child and is dealing with all kinds of wounds, you just raised the bar. Many times we enter into a relationship with a wounded child and think that we can parent them just like we do or would parent a biological child. It simply isn’t true. I know some foster or adoptive parents don’t deal with challenges with the children that they have brought into their home. However, most do. And about the time you think you have […]

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Education, Encouragement, Foster Parenting, Make a Difference MondaysApr. 17, 2017

Make a Difference Monday | Ten Ways to Prepare to be a New Foster Parent

Foster parenting is an experience unlike any other, and it is one that requires steadfastness, resilience, and love. You have finally decided to make the jump into foster parenting. Foster parenting is a tough calling and will take you through the complex beast that is child welfare, but it is also one that will teach you many life lessons. Here are tips to help you prepare. 1. Read, listen, and ask. Read as much as you can about fostering: Read it all—the good, the bad, and all of it in the middle. Foster parenting blogs are one exceptional way to […]

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