Date night!

Javalina Cantina has taco deals on Wednesdays! I’m pretty stoked about that. The kids attend church tonight, AWANA, they all enjoy it. Biscuit doesn’t go anymore, she prefers an older youth group and they meet on her cheer days so she misses out. Shy would prefer not to go but he isn’t responsible enough to be left home alone…I’ve tried for short amounts of time and he’s just not ready. In fact, Shy is behind socially and emotionally. If I had to guess, I’d say he has the mentality of a newly turned 7 year old, he is near his 11th birthday. Honestly, I have no idea how to repair that…I guess I will have to talk to his therapist.

Anyway, yay! Date night! I get to have uninterrupted conversations and make googly eyes at my husband. He’s so dreamy. I might even touch his butt!

In other news, today is Lemon’s third birthday! Happy birthday little one. And Bunny stayed home sick, booo. Oddly enough it’s not flu related, that’s been working it’s way through our house, she woke me up around 4am and said she vomited. While Lemon is feeling better we didn’t get to do anything special for her birthday as we were confined to the house with an sick kid.

Advertisements

What makes a household with 6 kids work?

People ask all the time ‘How do you do it with 6 kids?’ or the make comments about how crazy it must be at our home with all of the kids or how hard it must be. Guys, this is a myth…it’s not hard, it’s not a madhouse, and it’s not complicated. It’s really cool. Want to know how I do it? Let’s go!

1. Everyone is held accountable. I have six kids, each kid has 1 chore. The chore never changes, when the chore isn’t completed I know exactly which kid I need to find and talk to. They’re all responsible to keep their rooms cleaned and put away their own laundry. If it isn’t completed I know who to talk to, it’s pretty simple. If your chores aren’t done correctly you lose all electronic privileges. To kids that’s like death, anything but the electronics! Nooooo!

2. Communication. Do you know how important it is to say what you mean and mean what you say? It’s crucial in large households. Think before you speak, speak kindly to one another, and don’t lie.

3. Pick up after yourself. The kids are allowed to play anywhere with their toys, outside, inside, the pool, wherever. They’re responsible to put their things away when they’re done. They also are responsible to put their shoes, jackets, and backpacks away after school.

4. Homework. We pay for A’s, $5 an A. Kids work hard independently to achieve goals, when report cards come out its pretty exciting around here. School is their job and you get paid to work, it’s simple.

5. Love. We love fiercely. It doesn’t matter if you make mistakes, don’t do chores, get bad grades, mess up…we still love. It’s important to know that you have someone on your side no matter what.

Sure, there are house rules but these rules are the most important ones, in my opinion. These things help make things move along effortlessly and swiftly. Yes, we have hiccups along the way but who doesn’t?! Having a large family isn’t hard, it isn’t unpleasant, and it is a chaotic mess around here. We have order, structure, and fun all balled up and that’s what makes our home amazing.

Next time you think, ‘Oh my gosh, how do they do it?!’ Just remember it’s normal for us and we think the same thing about small families. 🙂

My heart bleeds

My foster babies are amazing, they’re doing well in school (STRAIGHT A’S) and they’re personalities are insanely fun. They’re always optimustic, they take being in the system very well, and they’re happy through it all. Kids are resilient, they roll with the punches.

I overheard Bells talking and she said she would be really sad if she went home because her family is here, she went on about how she would miss my hugs, Bunny’s company, and Lemons laugh. A thousand little daggers penetrated my heart. I want her to go home, I want her family to be the best they can be, I want her to live the life she deserves. Reunification. Reunification. Reunification. That’s my ultimate goal. I can’t hide the hurt in my heart…it’s still there. She calls me mom, I tuck her in every night, and I praise her for all of the great things she does. I also scold her when she’s naughty, punish her, and guide her. I am her foster mom.

I’m angry too. I’m angry at her bio family for not understanding that she is an absolute jewel. I am angry that she has never really been loved in a conventional way until she had come to our home. I’m angry that no one helped her with homework, had dinner at the table with her, or tucked her in at night and told her she was loved. I’m angry because I see all of the potential in her, I see her kind heart, and I can see that one day she will be a leader…but her bio family couldn’t.

Bells and Shy have been with us nearly 10 months, I wish I could say that’s a long time in the foster care world. Unfortunately, it’s not. I love having them around, our family dynamic changed a little but in a positive way. It hurts me to make normal family plans, like a vacation, and plan for them to be here or buliding a new home and making sure they have their space. Not because I don’t want them to come or be a part of what we are doing, oh no, I love them and I want them to be involved…they are my babies,  even if the timeline is unknown. I have this overwhelming guilt that if they do go home, or to another foster home, or an adoptive home, that it won’t be like this. That they won’t have family trips, Sunday rituals, the love and support. It is all unknown and that is scary. It hurts. It aches. It’s definitely a thorn in my side.

The biggest curse of foster care is the caring part. I love them, I will always love them, but loving someone and losing someone goes hand in hand in this system. No matter how much you prepare yourself…it gets you.

image

Look at these sassy winners! I’m so proud of them, this is R and Bunny. R is on the mini Dream team and Bunny is tiny Love. R’s team placed 1st AND won the overall Grand Championship award. Bunny’s team placed 1st too.

image

These are my girls, Biscuit and Bunny. Biscuit is on 3 teams right now (total overachiever) and one of her teams placed 1st! This is the first time in my kids cheer career that they’ve both placed 1st together. It makes my proud and happy!

image

And if you’ve ever wondered who the Universal Sonics biggest cheerleader of the cheerleaders is…well, the answer is Lemon! This kid cheers all of her ‘cheer friends’ on and is excited to be around them all.

I wish I had more pictures of the boys, they’re always SO busy doing stuff. They aren’t keen on stopping so I can take pictures. I have a ton of pictures of Bells, she looooves to have her picture taken, but I don’t like covering her beautiful face for the sake of her privacy.

Have a beautiful day, I know I will!

Where has the time gone?!

Let’s start by saying things are going well! Everyone is happy and healthy.

Foster care: Ugh. I get so annoyed, I’m irritated with the lack of communication sometimes by the DCS. I’ve been trying to get some things squared away such as over night visits, so Bells and Shy can stay with biological family members. Finally, with some creative help from my licensing agency, who is top notch and my licensing worker is a saint, we figured everything out.

You see, my agency has a respite service which pretty much means they have other foster parents in the area who will look after your foster kids if you have to travel or need a break. Unfortunately, the possibility of splitting up my foster babies is just about 100%. I don’t like that, I don’t want them to be with strangers in the first place and I certainly don’t want them split up and with strangers. Respite is awesome in some circumstances…just not mine.

We have some other issues to work out with DCS but I’ll save that for another day, another blog.

Bells and Shy are doing wonderfully in school, sports, and church. I’m proud of them in so many ways.

Lemon’s birthday is approaching. I’m going to have a 3 year old! We are having a Daniel Tiger birthday party…it’s going to be crazy!

Cheer competitions have started, we’ve started the season off great! We’ve had lots of first place awards in our gym. I’m so proud of my Sonics family, these kids work hard and our coaches are dedicated. Not this weekend but the next weekend we are headed to The Duel in the Desert in Palm Springs, my girls are ready! Biscuit and Bunny are amped, they’ve got their eye placing first again so they’re working extra hard.

My Boychild is slacking off at school and I received an email from his teacher today, I’m disappointed but he is willing to accept the punishment and is being very obedient when it comes to fixing his mistake. That makes me proud, I’m glad he recognizes his mistake and is willing to work hard to fix it.

Husband and I are well, we spend Wednesday nights together and have little dates while the kids are at their youth group.