Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Christmas Call

Early last week I got a call from one of our workers. Being "on hiatus" from fostering until February (unless a huge emergency comes up) I honestly thought she was calling to wish us a Merry Christmas.. that's just how sweet she is.

I quickly realized it wasn't a social call.

She started by saying she was completely aware that the little girl they were calling us on was not a match. That being said, she had seen Jack and Jill blossom in our care and wanted us to be contacted just the same. Before handing the phone off to another worker, she gave this bit of advice, "You all need to make this decision with your heads and not your hearts..."

Holding breath..

The story told was beyond heart wrenching and in no time I was in tears. Sobbing, actually. What the poor little angel had been through was mind numbing. At 10 years old, no less. I listened carefully, took notes like mad and tried to remember to ask all the pertinent questions.

Talk about being caught off guard.

I called DH wearing my Super Hero Cape just knowing we could swoop in and save the day. I read back what I could (trying to decipher the crazy-hurried chicken scratch). Silence. And more silence. He was clearly unsure. Time was of the essence and I gave him 10 (whole) minutes to decide if we wanted to move forward with a presentation.

In the meantime I called Nantie. Remember, the three of us need to be on board.. this is a family affair. She was heart broken but unsure, as well.

By the time I called DH back he had decided it was not a good match. Much like The Call we got on the sisters in August of 2008, once again he was the voice of reason. Unfortunately, there are so many layers of issues in this case we are just not equipped to handle them all. Going into a situation like this ill-prepared is a recipe for disaster.

Dismayed, I packed my cape and called the workers back. We were one of several families contacted but I still felt great sadness. Thinking with your head just plain stinks sometimes.

I wanted to remind ya'll that this is a really tough time of year for the kiddos (and their families) in the system. Drinking and drug use typically spikes over the holidays. While we're all enjoying family and friends and creating new wonderful memories, bear in mind there is sadness and loss in our own backyards. Please keep them all in your prayers for peace, safety and comfort.

And don't forget to count your blessings.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Perfect Moment Monday

On Sunday we had the family over for Christmas brunch. Nantie whipped up an amazing meal.. an egg/hash brown casserole, bacon, sausage, freshly cut pineapple, scrumptious mini fruit bowls, croissants, mimosas .. to die for. We chatted, laughed and later enjoyed a movie together.

Although my jeans no longer fit.. it was the perfect end to a wonderful holiday weekend!

I Capture
Perfect Moments.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

T'was The Day After Christmas..

.. and the house is trashed..

I was going to take pictures and but a girl has to have some pride. Trust me, it's a wreck.

We enjoyed a lovely Christmas afternoon/evening at Auntie Moo and Uncle Kiwi's.. eating way too much, hootin' and a hollerin'. It was great. Our front room is now littered with tons of presents (odd .. since we all said we weren't going to exchange gifts this year).

I will share pictures from Christmas Eve Day.. it was postcard perfect:

It was, like, 7 degrees.. I wasn't stepping out further than the open doors to take pictures..

Rusty and Maria were on high alert.. undoubtedly anticipating the arrival of St Nick (this had nothing to do with the elk, bunnies and squirrels running about, I swear!):

I personally didn't snap any pictures Christmas Day. My little digie never made it out of my purse.. weird!

I hope everyone is enjoying a wonderful holiday weekend!!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Do You Know? Listen..

Said the shepard boy to the mighty king
Do you know what I know
In your palace wall mighty king
Do you know what I know
A child, a child
Shivers in the cold
Let us bring him silver and gold
Let us bring him silver and gold

Said the king to the people everywhere
Listen to what I say
Pray for peace people everywhere
Listen to what I say
The child, the child
Sleeping in the night
He will bring us goodness and light
He will bring us goodness and light

The child, the child
Sleeping in the night
He will bring us goodness and light

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Do You Hear?

Said the little lamb to the shepard boy
Do you hear what I hear
Ringing through the sky shepard boy
Do you hear what I hear
A song, a song
High above the tree
With a voice as big as the sea
With a voice as big as the sea

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Do You See?

Said the night wind to the little lamb
Do you see what I see
Way up in the sky little lamb
Do you see what I see
A star, a star
Dancing in the night
With a tail as big as a kite
With a tail as big as a kite

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

It's A Sign ~ Subtlety Part 2

In my emailbox this morning ----> THERE'S STILL TIME!! <----

(.. just sayin'...)

Saturday, December 19, 2009


... is so not my forte....

Friday, December 18, 2009

Pushing Past The Blues

I love Christmas.. it's a magical time. It brings back nostalgic memories of years past while we enjoy making new ones. I have to admit, this year is a little rough and I'm trying to work through the sadness. The challenging moments are walking through stores and seeing the toys for children. Okay, anything "Lightning McQueen" or Disney Princess related will bring on the tears.

It makes me miss the kiddos something fierce.

I allow myself to grieve but try not to get too caught too up in it. I've kept myself busy doing positive things I enjoy like working on our Christmas cards (the first round went out a week ago--second round gets done this weekend). I've reveled in shopping for presents to send to Dad (never thought I would get to do that again, right?). A blessing in and of itself!

I have been really focused on launching MomTV's Adoption Angles. Can I just say, I have met some amazing women and am honored to have them booked as guest hosts. I'm passionate about it and my hope of hopes is that it will inspire and touch others' hearts, as well.

If I stay focused on our blessings and The Reason For The Season the blues pass. It's okay to be sad and work through feelings but it can't be allowed to overtake our lives. I am thankful the twins, Mannie and Sunshine are out there thriving and can imagine their extreme excitement on Christmas morning. Maybe next year we'll be blessed with little ones..

Let Joy Prevail!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Prayers For Shellie

A dear friend in the blogosphere, Shellie Ross lost her 2 year old son, Bryson, yesterday in a pool incident. It happened before her very eyes. I am asking you all to please hold their family and close friends up in prayer. Trish at MomDot is keeping us all updated and you can Tweet Shellie directly at @military_mom.

Normally I am one of those "let's all get along" kinda gals. I don't do drama and have been referred to as "PollyAnna". I'm stepping out of that mode for a moment to say that I am sickened by the haters that have had the audacity to personally attack Shellie during this horrific time. Everything from tweets about it being "Her Fault" to questioning the incident all together (because some moron was "unable to find a police investigation open in FL for this particular death").


I am dumbfounded and disgusted. The family is in absolute agony and for all of you evil people I personally hope you burn for your heartless comments.

Shellie, we are all thinking about you today and mourn the loss of your dear son. May the Lord watch over you and your family.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Find My Family

As many of you know, not only am I a foster mom that hopes to one day adopt, but an adoptee as well. I found out what they refer to as "late in life" (age 30) that I was an adopted county baby.

Since the premier of the show a few weeks back I've been inundated with emails and phone calls asking if I have watched and my thoughts about it. As a matter of fact, the night it premiered I had several calls from (crying) inquisitors. It really moved them. On the flip side, I've also heard the naysayers speaking out against it (there's always haters, right?) with the stand that it exploits the families.


Let me tell ya, I've beaten the bushes searching for 10 years, waiting just over 8 months to get my flimsy non-id information and had wonderful "search angels" (they work for free) try to help me along the way. With no luck. I've gotten quotes of anywhere from $700-$3500 from private investigators who all claim to be the best of the best. Did I mention there are no guarantees?

Of course not.

I believe I (and other adoptees) have the right to inquire about our linage, health history and other family information non adopted people take for granted. Perhaps even meet one blood relative and unlock a secret or two about ourselves along the way. My birth mom may have passed away and I have accepted that. She also has the right not to be found nor want to meet. I respect that. If someone from a production company wants to utilize their professionals to search and document my journey (for free) I have one thing to say:


I DVR'd Find My Family but didn't watch it until this past weekend. It just hits so close to home I think it took me a while to muster the courage to view it. Silly, huh? Although my story is not nearly as compelling as those shown, it's dang relatable on so many levels...

Pass the tissues, please.

Sappy, emotional, gooey me loves the show. Host Tim Green was adopted and searched for his birth mom (okay, being a former NFL player--amongst other accomplishments-- is cool, too). Host Lisa Joyner, also an adoptee, has an adopted daughter, does a wonderful job on the show (and she's married to Jon Cryer--Duckie, ya'll! Brownie Points! lol). Seriously though, it's a lovely, feel-good show... the haters just need to move on.

Now for the million dollar question.. have I applied to be on it? Maybe.

Maybe not.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Shout Out Sunday

Here's how Shout Out Sunday works, my friends:

Choose a blog that has moved you. A daily must read. One you stalk. One that makes you laugh, cry or scream at the monitor. A new blog you would like to give exposure to. Someone you would like to introduce to your readers and send a warm fuzzy while you're at it.

Write your post, linking your chosen blog in it, grab and paste the button code below. When it's live, put the url in MckLinky (also below). Lets try to visit them and some leave some comments, m'kay?
Shout Out Sunday

MckLinky is open until 6am tomorrow morning..

Now for my shout out!

I have been stalking Snarky Mom at Postcards From Insanity for well over a year. She is a mommy of 4, a wife to 1 (sorry I couldn't help that), has adopted from foster care and was also a social worker in her former life. She is now a SAHM and a funny one at that. Her blog is a roller coaster of emotion.. she'll have you laughing so hard it hurts, so upset you yell at your monitor and make you burst into tears (all in the same post, mind you). Her adventures in the system were frightening and joyful. She's definitely not a run of the mill, milk and toast SAHM.. the girl is insightful and hysterical.

She can be edgy and her blog is not for the faint of heart. If you start from the beginning (which I highly recommend) you will not be disappointed. Snarky Mom is real and that's not always pretty with a bow on top.

Go surf over and check out Postcards now!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Coming Soon To MomTV ...

... ME!

Click to Watch MomTV - Watch Video and LIVE Streaming Shows

"Adoption Angles" premiers January 6th, 2010 at 9pm EST!! My vision for the show is to be inspirational, informative (and FUN!). All adoption avenues will be discussed.. fost/adopt, domestic, international. I'm also going to have guests that are birth moms, social workers, nonprofits and in the behavioral field.

If adoption has touched your life (or someone you know) and you would like to be a guest on the show, please drop me a line. All you need is high speed Internet, a webcam and a 1/2 hour to chat. I have some downright amazing people that are going to be sharing their stories.. It's going to be an awesome time! Please remember to tune in! Of course, I'll be posting reminders so ya'll don't forget.

A LOT of reminders.


Thursday, December 10, 2009

Yet Another Cool Update..

I got a call yesterday from Hospice. Since my trip Dad has been PUTTING ON WEIGHT! He's eating and not depressed!!! I got to "talk" to him on the phone and he was in great spirits. His wonderful nurse put up a little Xmas tree and they decorated it with ornaments (he even got a Santa hat--it's keeping his head warm and he's loving it). I'm going to put together a little care package for him and send it directly to his hospice nurse to take to him.

How cool is THAT?? Thanks for the prayers, all!! They've worked!

God is good!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Update on Jack & Jill

I heard through the grapevine our twins are doing great. Obviously we can't be given specifics but I was told that Jack is still standing up for himself. Apparently Jill tried to cut in on a conversation he was having, he showed her the hand and told her he wasn't done yet.

That's our boy!!!

When they came to us, he didn't speak much (she was the jabber jaw and even interpreted for him). He was a little doormat. Over time he came into his own and it made me cry (happy tears) to hear some of the good stuff actually stuck!

Their memories of us have surely faded. He may not even remember his former, meek self.. but we all saw him transform. Him being a healthier, happier little boy because of the time spent with us made every minute of those 8 months worth it.

Even if it did mean having our hearts broken.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Dad & Me ~ The Final Chapter

Life is not a Hallmark made for TV movie. Things don't always get wrapped up in a neat little package with everyone getting their happily ever afters. It can be messy, stressful and downright dramatic. We don't necessarily get what we want when we want it. As frustrating as that is, my faith tells me to let it go .. it's out of my hands.

No easy task for this mere, very imperfect mortal.

A month ago I started to retell the story of Daddy and me because I received a call from hospice (his caregiver at the nursing home). I was told he did not have much time left and his arrangements needed to be made soon. He's not suffering from a terminal illness but has been going downhill for sometime. Refusing to eat, he had lost weight and was depressed. It's a call I've been expecting but I don't think anyone is ever really ready for.

My heart broke.

When it's all said and done, despite the hurt caused by Dad leaving Mama and me, it's not about that. It's about a little girl that will always love her Daddy. He's the man that taught me road trips are awesome, ran beside me when my training wheels came off (shouting, "Go Baby GO!" as I blazed away on my Big Girl Bike), played catch outside until it was so dark we could barely see the ball, taught me to drive, was a pro at checkers,

Proudly showed me off on vacation

Made Christmas Magical

Indulged my love of horses and took me to lessons every Saturday morning for years

Was front and center for my First Communion

And after 7 years of cotillions waltzed with his little debutante.

I've gotten a glimpse at how our foster kiddos feel.. in most cases they see past their parents' faults and wrongdoings. No matter what your age, you never stop loving your family. It's innocent and very child-like but it is what it is. Familia.

Too weak now to be placed in a wheelchair, my once active father is completely bed ridden. He will never get the chance to feel the sun on his face, hop in the car and go to the store or even take a deep breath of fresh air. His only visitors are the lovely hospice nurses.

That kills me.

I've been asked if I felt this journey was all for not and if I regret being reunited with him after 20 years. I wasn't able to swoop in and save the day, justice has not been served (nor will it be in his lifetime). Yes, Dad pulled a massive midlife crisis, walked away from our family only to create a new one that wouldn't be there for him in the end. Did he make his own bed? Maybe. Does he deserve this?

In my book, absolutely not.

I've had the opportunity to visit him on several occasions over the past few years. I got to look him in the eye and tell him I forgive him. Although he can hardly speak, 2 weeks ago he was able to call me, "My Baby", reach out and caress my cheek. I got to see him and (in my heart) say a final, proper goodbye.

Knowing now what all went down, would I do this all again?

In a heartbeat.

I love you, Daddy. Always.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Dad & Me Revisited Part 9


As ya'll can imagine, the moment in the parking lot when the detective informed me the case was closed completely changed the course of my relationship with The Son. Probably forever. I didn't have to cut ties with him because he stopped calling or emailing. He knew darn well the jig was up. Having been chewed out (in a huge way) by me before he sure didn't want to face my wrath this time.

Smart kid.

Granted (remember I've harped on this before) he was only 18. Legally an adult but very much just a child. Back in good graces with a family that had deserted him, he chose himself over Dad. Self preservation.. it's a trait we all have and undoubtedly something he learned to master from She Devil.

I often wonder if, say 10 years from now, The Son will look back and realize the incredibly bad choices he made. If he will feel remorse for taking advantage of Best Friends Grandma and being so disrespectful to her. Will he think back sadly to all the times he should've visited Dad and chose not to?

I think he will and honestly, that makes me sad.

On the flipside, I firmly believe you reap what you sow. By all accounts She Devil and Lazy Husband are in for a whopper of a bumper crop. Wouldn't you all agree? It's not a matter of if but when. You can't pull the stunts like they did and walk away Scot free. They will get theirs and that is where I find peace.

Exhale? Not yet.. I've got one more thing to say..

Monday, November 30, 2009

Perfect Moment Monday

Boxes drug up from the basement? Check!
Placed said boxes randomly about the room with no rhyme or reason? Check!
Put in chick flick and ready to rock the house Christmas style? Check!


Let the holidays begin!!


I Capture
Perfect Moments.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Shout Out Sunday!

It's Baaaccckk!!!

Here's how Shout Out Sunday works, my friends:

Choose a blog that has moved you. A daily must read. One you stalk. One that makes you laugh, cry or scream at the monitor. A new blog you would like to give exposure to. Someone you would like to introduce to your readers and send a warm fuzzy while you're at it.

Write your post, linking your chosen blog in it, grab and paste the button code below. When it's live, put the url in MckLinky (also below). Lets try to visit them and some leave some comments, m'kay?

Shout Out Sunday

MckLinky will run from midnight Sunday through 6:00am Monday:

Now, for my Shout Out Sunday recipient!
This week I would like to give some SOS lovin' to my bloggy friend Bridget from Don't Blink. She is a Mommy of 5 beautiful children, a loving wife, loves the Lord (and ain't afraid to say so). Her blog is brilliant and has proven SNL wrong time and time again because (as she says),

"Not All Homeschool Moms Wear Prairie Skirts.."

(Yes, I kiped it off her sidebar)

Love your blog, Bridget.. thank you for sharing your beautiful family's adventures with us!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Dad & Me Part 8

Once The Son got all settled into his best friends Grandma's house, school began. Bless her heart, she got him to every appointment imaginable.. from the dentist, to the doctor and he even got his drivers license. School clothes, supplies, senior portraits.. he well on his way to having a wonderful, normal senior year.

Out of nowhere, his relatives started coming out of the woodwork. Grandparents (from his Mom's side), Aunts, Uncles and cousins. Where they had been hiding out the previous couple of years is beyond me (don't even get me started) but they suddenly came out en mass. Could it of been She Devil sending out the Red Alert?

I'm sure it was.

Mind you, the entire time all this was going down, NONE of his family knew I was involved. He didn't want any issues because they all thought She Devil was an innocent princess and he was afraid of yet more retaliation.

Talk about heads in sand, right??!

Family chatter buzzed about Poor She Devil.. she was being harassed by the local police and had done nothing wrong. Of course, the version they all heard was the spin about how she stepped up and tried to help Dad. And The Son..

Blah Blah Blah.. Cry Cry Cry..

As senior year rolled on, The Son lived up to the teenager reputation. When he got his license, his Grandpa gave him an old truck and he was all about cruisin' with his friends. I told him it was time he got a job (JUST LIKE I HAD TO) and he drug his feet for months. He started talking back to Best Friend's Grandma and on one occasion, when told he had to go visit Dad, refused.. saying he would rather hang out at the mall instead.

(Insert needle across album noise here) ~ 'Scuse me?

When I caught wind of THAT little episode let me state for the record that yes, I called and tore into him like I guarantee he had never been torn into before. I was DONE hearing his, "Poor Me" stories and only getting calls when he needed extra money for this and that (from Dad's account). Remember he cried over how he never got to see Dad and now that he could go at his own leisure he couldn't be bothered. The boy that I felt so badly for got every wish granted.. then turned into lippy little punk.


In June of that year I flew out to visit Dad again. It was The Son's graduation day but I had long since decided I would not attend. Much to his delight, I'm sure--how would he explain THAT to his family?

Auntie, Best Friend's Grandma and I checked Dad out of the nursing home and took him to his favorite restaurant. It was a wonderful time. He wrote on his note pad and kept asking me about the status of the criminal case against She Devil. I had not heard from the detective in quite some time (par for the course--he was nearly impossible to get a hold of) and made several attempts to reach him by phone.

By some stroke of luck, while in the restaurant parking lot I got the detective on the line. He seemed rather confused by my call and when I told him we were just checking in he informed me, "The case has been closed.. a few months ago, actually. The Son refused to give a statement.."

I about passed out.

The little rat, not wanting to get on his family's bad side (and continue riding Grandpa's Gravy Train) totally bailed on Dad.

The Son's new name? He Devil.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Dad & Me Part 7

PART SEVEN!? Really? Holy cow.. I apologize for the longer posts but if I keep them short and sweet (like I normally try to) we'll be at this for-evah!

Moving on..

The Son wanted out of She Devil's home asap but also wanted to stay in the same town. What kid wants to move weeks before his/her senior year of high school? I didn't blame him a bit.

The Son's best friend lived with his grandma and the kids had been tight since the second grade. She said she adored him (and Dad) since they first met and was very nice. We became fast friends via phone calls and emails. Although her gut feeling was the living situation wasn't optimal there had been no proof and the subject was never broached. Completely appalled when let in on the true happenings, she wanted nothing more than to make The Son's senior year the best one ever. He would move in with them.. no ifs, ands or buts about it.

We devised a plan and our version of shock and awe commenced.

Early one Saturday morning several pickup trucks showed up unannounced at She Devil's apartment. The Son was adamant neither she nor Lazy Husband had a clue as he was afraid of some type of retaliation. With good reason. Husband was outraged and let everyone know it. Obviously seeing his meal ticket checking out the raving began (and didn't stop). On the Son's heels, he ranted and bullied about what an unappreciative, little weasel his young brother in law really was. After everything they had done for HIM, how dare he pull a disrespectful stunt like that..

Blah Blah Blah.

Surprisingly She Devil cried and helped him pack. It came off as her having an, "Ah HA!" moment. Had the realization finally kicked in that she hadn't taken proper care of her little brother? Was it regret or perfectly timed tears? Could someone be so heartless?

Final Answer: Hello? It's She Devil..

Although this was the beginning of a new chapter in The Son's life, the Do Over he dreamt of, there was now a chink in his armour. The hour of She Devil's tears and display of remorse (MIA for the past several years) rocked him. Maybe she hadn't been as bad as he made her out to be. Maybe he had blown things out of proportion.

The one promise I had made Dad was that justice would prevail. She Devil and Lazy Husband were going DOWN. I had the evidence.. the detective had the statements in hand and the bank even provided photos taken of She Devil at the ATM machines withdrawing cash. All I needed was The Son to tell his side. He was our sole, star witness. Slam Dunk, right?

Of course not...

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Giving Thanks

I Am Thankful For

*My wonderful husband
*Amazing Nantie
*My incredible family and friends
*Our beautiful home
*My bosses (that have yet to send me packing)
*The therapy this lil ole blog provides
*Relatively good health all year long

Most of all, I am so very thankful we got to be a little part of Jack & Jill and Mannie & Sunshine's journey. I pray they still feel the love we poured over them and their souls never forget their time with us.

I wish you all safe travels, a wonderful day filled with family and friends and comfy stretchy pants to lounge in later this afternoon!


(P.S. Goooo Broncos! - no snickering, please..)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Go On.. Grab A Button..


(See Dawn, I finally did it!)..

Monday, November 23, 2009

Healthy Kids Thank-A-Thon

In the spirit of the season CCIC is giving thanks for healthy children

Healthy Kids Thank-A-Thon 2009

I am soooo sorry for posting this so late (I've been spinning).
There may still be time to submit. Go NOW!

Perfect Moment Monday

This past weekend was another great reminder of how precious the gift of time with family truly is. The Good Lord has surrounded me with angels throughout my whole life's journey and this trip was no exception. My amazing best friend Bren, wonderful cousin Kadi and awesome Auntie carried me through yet another trial. I never could of done it without them.

No way, no how.

My Perfect Moment was being in the moment with my loved ones.

I Capture
Perfect Moments.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Doin' A WiFi Dance...

I'm at the airport, alive and well.. awaiting my flight home. It was an emotional trip (to say the least) but more of that to come. Unlike glorious DIA, I had to PAY for WiFi and I only have an hour to surf.

So wrong.

Just wanted to check in and let everyone know I haven't fallen off the face of the earth. Will try to get Shout Out Sunday up this evening when I get home (but not making any promises). A few hours is better than nothing, right?

Happy Sunday, Ya'll!!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Radio (Err, Bloggy) Silence

I'm off on a jet plane this morning and my destination has no Internet access. (AAACCCKKKK! Right?) No, I'm not headed to 1984 (although if I was I would have a stern talking to with my high school aged self--1st topic? hair & makeup then on to what boys RUN FROM real quick like, then..).


There is a good possibility I won't be able to post again until Monday. Yes, I could of prescheduled posts but that would've taken more energy than I care to imagine. Of course, I might just surprise ya'll (find some unsecured WiFi somewheres or hijack a car and find a Starbucks) and pop up when least expected..

Stay Tuned!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Dad & Me Revisited Part 6

The Son's story sadly unfolded. He confirmed many things that Dad was able to communicate to us. She Devil had fallen on hard times and asked if she, the husband and her children could move in until they got on their feet. They promised to pay rent (much unlike the story I heard later--her family was told that Dad asked them to move in to assist him-rent free, of course).

Some other high (er, LOW) lights..

**Not only were they helping themselves to Dad's ATM, they also had The Son's social security checks put into their names (calling themselves "guardians"). They were just rolling in money, weren't they?

**The Son had not been to a doctor or dentist in two years (they didn't have time to take him).

**Although 17 1/2 he wasn't driving yet.. he didn't even has his learners permit(again, no time).

**They wouldn't take him to see Dad because, you guessed it, who has the time?

**They hadn't bought him new clothes in forever and school was just about to start.

They had moved out of Dad's house and into an apartment. The Son went along.. where else was he to go? I about fell out of my chair when he told me they put their young son in his own room but The Son (almost a legal adult) was rooming with their 8 year old DAUGHTER.. WHAAAAAATTT???

For the record he was not comfortable with that.

It was common for them to eat dinner before he got home (he swore he wasn't rolling in all that late) and just leave a note directing him to leftovers. Often they took off as a family and left him behind.

He was pretty much fending for himself.

The Son had nothing nice to say about She Devil's husband (making it sound like all the bad things they had done were his idea). I wasn't buying it but kept my opinions to myself. They let Dad's house go to H.E.Double.Hockey.Sticks (the inside was trashed and when something happened to the sprinkler system they wouldn't fix it--the once lush yard was overgrown and burned). It was a wreck and they didn't give a hoot.

That crushed The Son.. it was his childhood home. Oh and She Devil's also but it must not of held the same sentimental value. Not uncommon for the heartless..

I digress..

The more we talked the more comfortable he became. My heart softened and was mush as his story unraveled. Dad had mentioned me once or twice but I was pretty much a ghost of the past (ya, that reality continues to hurt, let me tell ya). He wanted out of their home and begged me to help him. I was totally on board and was going to do everything I could to make it happen.

I went home that night and retold the sad tale to DH. We decided that if that poor kid had no place to go, by golly, we would move him here. That's how you take care of family. You have their backs and are there when the chips are down (even if you've never laid eyes on them). Right? RIGHT?!

Um, no.. not always..

Monday, November 16, 2009

Perfect Moment Monday

Some people say Perfect Moments can be found right outside your own front door..

So true..

I Capture
Perfect Moments.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Shout Out Sunday

Here's how Shout Out Sunday works:

Choose a blog that has moved you. A daily must read. One you stalk. One that makes you laugh, cry or scream at the monitor. A new blog you would like to give exposure to. Someone you would like to introduce to your readers and send a warm fuzzy while you're at it.

Write your post, linking your chosen blog in it, grab and paste the button code below. When it's live, put the url in MckLinky (also below). Lets try to visit them and some leave some comments, m'kay?

Shout Out Sunday

MckLinky is open until 8am tomorrow morning.

Now for my Shout Out.. This week my SOS goes to cousin Kadi Prescott.
Not only does she blog hereWomb At The Innsane she's a Social Media Maven
and has relaunched True Femme (the inspiration for SOS) with her partner in crime, Danielle.

No, her writing is not for the faint of heart.. it's edgy and real. She tells it like it is. On top of her ever-overflowing plate, throw in raising 7 (SEV-EN) children. When we have two kids, I'm spinning... I seriously have no idea how she pulls it off.

All that and she still finds time to help friends and family. The girl has never met a stranger. In the midst of my Dad's Epic Saga she and her husband selflessly came by my side. They were angels at a very dark time (stay tuned, that story is yet to come).

Keep an eye out.. she and her family will be featured on a followup Super Nanny episode as well as another segment of Dr Phil.

Kadi, thank you for being you. The world is a much brighter place with tender hearts like yours. I look forward to meeting up soon and giving you a hug in person.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Dad & Me Revisited Part 5

I needed help getting She Devil and her brood out of Dad's house. I wanted to remain off the radar for as long as possible.. never in a million years would she of suspected I was now a player in the game (and I wanted to keep it that way). The County (thrilled that I was helping) came to my assistance. A person of authority left a message for her stating they needed to speak ASAP. Probably figuring her con had run it's course, she actually returned the call. Wow, right? She was advised they needed to vacate the property immediately and they complied.

Easy schmeasy.

After they moved and I had the Power Of Attorney finally in hand, I went about the business of shutting down unnecessary accounts. Gas, water, cable, electric. It was no surprise it took longer than anticipated. Phone calls made, POA faxed, waiting for days for approval to take over the accounts. With everything slowing getting shut off, what was the one thing that sent The Son into a tirade and come a callin'?

No cell phone service, of course.

By then I had been on the scene for a couple of months. I was speaking to the nursing home reps almost daily and we had established a good rapport. I was their key to payment and they had the power to let him stay (or make him go). As long as we were making progress, they were happy. We needed each other and Dad needed all of us to play nice.

About a day after I had the cell phones shut off is when it really hit the fan. I got a call at work from one of my nursing home contacts and there was urgency in her voice. The Son had shown up.. with a posse. There was shouting in the back round. Some lady was yelling about lawyering up.. it was utter chaos.

Bring it.

I calmly asked her to tell them to pipe down and put him on the phone. Boy howdy, was he peeved. He demanded to know who in the (bleepity bleep) I was and what in the (bleepity bleep) was going on. I waited for his tirade to pass. When he finally stopped yelling I asked him if he was done. He said yes and I proceeded to introduce myself, "I'm Melissa, Dad's daughter" ..

DEAD SILENCE. He knew exactly who I was and that rocked him.

Firmly (but totally in control) I railed on him. Amongst other things I wanted him to know what I thought of what he, She Devil and her husband did to Dad. Where had HE been? Why did it take his cell phone getting cut off to get him to the nursing home? Dad had seen him once (the home had requested they bring something for him to wear and The Son had brought USED clothes-I kid you not). I was purging the previous few months of frustration and wasn't so nice about it. When I was done once again, there was dead silence. Then he cried, quietly told me his side of the story and my heart broke.

And I felt about ----> <---- big...

Friday, November 13, 2009

Rest In Peace, Sweet Gavin

When you have a moment please visit Adam, Karen and Madison at The Owens Family. This past week their sweet Gavin went Home to be with Jesus. Although he is healed, the family is left behind to grieve. Please keep them in your prayers for peace and surf over to share words of encouragement.

Thank You.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Dad & Me Revisited ~ A Recap

Before continuing on I wanted to take a breather and say a few things..

For all of you that are just joining us I've been telling the tale of Daddy and me. What does that have to do with fostering or fostering to adopt? Nothing. But it is a part of my journey I wanted to share. There's actually a moral to the story and to be quite honest, I need the (free) therapy writing provides.

I double dog swear this started out as one or two posts and.. well.. in true bloggy fashion, has morphed into a saga. Here are the first four parts to get you up to speed:

Dad & Me Revisited

Dad & Me Revisited Part 2

Dad & Me Revisited Part 3

Dad & Me Revisited Part 4

Admittedly, I have been struggling with how to tell the next series of events. I want to be fair (but another part of me wants to throw a certain someone under the bus and expose them for all it's worth). I've spoken to family members, close friends and have prayed on just how much I want/need to tell. It's not cool to bash someone just for the sake of doing so (knowing full well they cannot defend themselves). I have no doubt at the end of the day, I would feel badly for lashing out. There are always several sides to a story (although mine is the correct version, right?).


Please bear in mind when all of this really started to go down, it was just weeks before The Son's senior year of high school. 17 is a selfish, know-it-all, self righteous age. It has been the one thing I have had to remind myself over and over (andoverandoverandover) again.

I believe one day years from now The Son look back with many regrets and poor decisions made will haunt him...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Dad & Me Revisited Part 4

With the help of my Uncle and Auntie, I became Dad's Power of Attorney. Finally, we could bust into his accounts and get a clearer picture of what all was going down financially. The nursing home was chomping at the bit.. for the year he had been there he owed them over $40,000 and obviously that amount grew daily. The bank account should of been relatively untouched (except for the automatic house and car payments) with several thousand sitting in there. His pension and social security had been direct deposited that whole time. I had hopes of writing the facility a check to knock that balance down a bit. So what was the account balance? -$400

I almost threw up.

On top of adding online bill pay to cover all their incidentals, She Devil and her husband helped themselves to Dad's ATM card. What happens when you withdraw more than what's really in there? Penalties. There were pages and pages of overdraft penalties.

Mind you, Dad had been with this financial institution for roughly 50 years. I won't name names so we'll just call them Mel's Cargo. In those five decades of banking, the account was pristine and he did not ever bounce a check. Not once. So how on God's green earth could over one year's worth of overdraft continue to go on without any red flags? It was thousands of dollars in penalties. Why wasn't some type of freeze put on the account for investigation? How about even a phone call?? Their answer: It was DAD'S responsibility to monitor his account. Um, hello? Dumped at a nursing home, can't talk, can't walk, hasn't gotten mail in over a year. How, prey tell, was he supposed to do that?


They had no answer but still stood behind their policy.

Mel's Cargo & I went roundy-round. Undeterred, I still opened up a fraud investigation against She Devil and her hubby for elder abuse with the bank and the local police department. I poured over all the bills and paperwork and picked out everything that was not legit. The next few months was chock full of spending hours on hold, leaving messages that went unanswered and being bounced from one person to the next. Red tape galore. Still I held fast that justice would prevail. Why? Aside from the truth I had Dad's high school aged son on my team and he was going to help as a witness.

Or so I thought..

Monday, November 9, 2009

Perfect Moment Monday

My Perfect Moment has been several months in the making.. In spring I try to get into my gardens and rip (er.. gently, lovingly) and tear out all the old junk. Basically get it all cleaned up and ready for summer. Last spring, we were in the midst of life with Jack and Jill (our 4 1/2 year old placements) and clean up time came and went... I needed to give a full day to tend to the yard.. it didn't happen.

To my dismay, our front walk was overgrown and looked liked this..

And this...

The only big fans of my disaster were..

This past weekend the weather was amazing and Nantie, DH and I hit the yard work hard..

And VIOLA!!!!


Nantie said the only picture missing is me on Sunday.. curled up in the fetal position on the couch..

I Capture
Perfect Moments.

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