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Wednesday, May 30, 2007
Vacation with a foster child
Sometimes I take for granted that Addy isn't officially my daughter yet. My love for her is exactly the same as it is for my boys. I was kind of surprised that it happened so quickly. It still catches me off guard sometimes when I see her laughing or she hugs me and pats me back that she's here and she's ours and I have a daughter.

It's only when I get calls from the state or her guardian ad litem that I remember we're not homefree yet.

I want to take Addy to see my sister and her family in August. I was online and had found my flights and was just about to click the button to purchase the tickets when something made me stop and question if I could even take her out of state. So I called and asked for permission to take her out of state. Her next court date is June 7th so they will petition the court then. The problem is that I can't book any flights until I get the ok. All of the cheap flights for July are already gone and most of August, too. Just think, when we come back - it will be almost over and she'
ll be ours forever.
Guardian Ad Litem meeting
Addy's guardian ad litem to see us recently. He has to go to court soon for her and needed to meet with us beforehand. The meeting lasted only about 15 minutes. He was very happy with the transformation Addy has made in just a few short months. He noted how happy and healthy and secure she seemed with us.

He gave us a run down of what we can expect with court when the adoption is finalized in a few months and that we should not take anything for granted as far a subsidy/benefits that Addy could be eligible for. He said the state is broke and they don't want to spend any more money than they have to so it will be up to us to research and ask for what she needs prior to the adoption because once it's final, that's it.

For those of you who have adopted domestically, can you share what to expect? What did you ask for as part of the subsidy agreement. He said we don't need to get a lawyer to handle it. Do we?

I can't wait for all this to be over and for the judge to declare that she is ours.
Poem I got in an email this morning....

*Just for this morning, I am going to step over the laundry, and pick you up and take you to the park to play.

*Just for this morning, I will leave the dishes in the sink, and let you teach me how to put that puzzle of yours together.

*Just for this afternoon, I will unplug the telephone and keep the computer off, and sit with you in the backyard and blow bubbles.

*Just for this afternoon, I will not yell once, not even a tiny grumble when you scream and whine for the ice cream truck and I will buy you one if he comes by.

*Just for this afternoon, I won't worry about what you are going to be when you grow up, or second guess every decision I have made where you are concerned.

*Just for this afternoon, I will let you help me bake cookies, and I won't stand over you trying to fix them.

*Just for this afternoon, I will take us to McDonald's and buy us both a Happy Meal so you can have both toys.

*Just for this evening, I will hold you in my arms and tell you a story about how you were born and how much I love you.

*Just for this evening, I will let you splash in the tub and not get angry.

*Just for this evening, I will let you stay up late while we sit on the porch and count all the stars.

*Just for this evening, I will snuggle beside you for hours, and miss my favorite TV shows.

*Just for this evening when I run my finger through your hair as you pray, I will simply be grateful that God has given me the greatest gift ever given.

*I will think about the mothers and fathers who are searching for their missing children, the mothers and fathers who are visiting their children's graves instead of their bedrooms, and mothers and fathers who are in hospital rooms watching their children suffer senselessly, and screaming inside that they can't handle it anymore.

*And when I kiss you good night I will hold you a little tighter, a little longer. It is then, that I will thank God for you, and ask Him for nothing, except one more day.............
Addy's Birthday party
Monday night we had a party at home for Addy. Just a few people and we had a barbeque. It was a perfect day.

She adores balloons so I got her a bunch and attached them to her highchair. I picked up a pink ribbon badge that says "I'm 2 today". She had on a white dress with flowers and her hair in puppy tails with big bows. I wish I could post pics. Soon...

I don't think she knew what Happy Birthday was at first but she kept saying "Hap-Birtay" and clapping from the excitement of it all.

She got really excited when she opened her presents and she even blew out the candles on her cake. By that time she was able to say "Hap-Birtay to You", LOL.
Monday, May 28, 2007
Happy 2nd Birthday, Adaline Grace!

We're so blessed to have you in our lives and to be able to share this special day with you. We love you very much,

Daddy, Mommy, brothers B. and J.
Saturday, May 26, 2007
Wild Animal Zoo
Friday, Addy and I went to the zoo with her daycare. It was hot!! 90+º. It was fun showing her all these animals for the first time. I'm not sure if she had a clue what they were or not because up until now, she's only seen dogs. They have an area where the deer are free roaming and they will come right up to you and eat out of your hand. That was the coolest.

She fell asleep on my lap on the way home. It was a good day.
"She's Square"
Tuesday Addy and I had to go to WIC to renew. She was fine all morning, we got there and she flipped out. She was arching her back and screaming. I tried to give her some goldfish to quiet her but she just flung them all over. She was out of control and hitting me.

She had to have her height and weight checked as part of the process. She's 34½ inches long and 34½ high. The worker there said "She's square!". LOL. That will make a great scrapbooking title.

As soon as we left she was fine. I realized later that this happens to some degree every time we meet with "adoption people". I think she gets scared that I'm going to give her away.
Monday, May 21, 2007
Creeped out
I posted last year about one of the people we took adoption training class. He was the single guy who brought in a movie for us. Last Friday, dh called me at work and told me to go online and check out our local news. I almost died, there was that guy arrested for child pornography. A tipster notified the cops about him after they found suspicious stuff posted by him online. When they raided his house, they found a stash of child pornography and pictures of young boys. I immediately called the trainer and left a voice mail in case she didn't know.

I shudder to think that he might have been placed with a boy prior to his arrest. After all the abuse, neglect and everything else that children go through to get to the point of having to be put up for adoption, I can't imagine any child being excited to finally get a home and then have to be placed with a "parent" who would violate them in the worst way possible. I just hope DCF got the same vibes as the rest of us at class did and prevented this scumbag from getting access to an innocent victim.
Mother's Day
Friday, May 11th Addy's daycare hosted a mother's day brunch. We had the best time. When we arrived, we were seated with two other moms and daughters. We feasted on scrambled eggs, croissants, sliced ham and a fresh fruit cup. Addy and I sat side by side on these little chairs and ate. After, the teacher came by with gifts. Addy made me the most beautiful book with a poem inside with her handprints and footprints and coloring and stamping. She also painted a flower pot and planted something in it (don't know what yet).

On Mother's Day, my stepsister had a Mother's Day brunch. Addy was a big hit but she stuck to me like velcro all day. My younger son made me a card and inside it said "You are the beast Mother in the world" (LOL) and me planted me a flower, too.

I know I keep saying it but I am truly blessed to be the mother of three beautiful, thoughtful, funny, smart kids. The journey to get to the younger two was long and hard but it made getting there that much sweeter.
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
Mother's Day card
I sent Addy's old foster mother a Mother's Day card. I wanted to thank her for the hard work she did raising Addy for the first part of her life and to reassure her that Addy is doing ok with us. I filled up the entire inside of the card as well as the back updating her on what's been going on and I enclosed a pic of her.

I photocopied the card to save for Addy. I've been saving absolutely everything for her so when she's older, if she ever doubts that she wasn't loved enough, she'll see that so many people cared about her. It's not her fault or her birthmom's fault that she had to be adopted, it's just a fact - and I want her to understand that. Unfortunately, I could never send her birth mom a Mother's Day card because I don't even know if she would remember Addy - she's like a child herself. And again, it's not her fault that she wasn't adopted by the foster mom, it's a decision that the state made for her (and I am eternally grateful).

I'll probably update the foster mom a couple of times a year for Mother's Day and Christmas as long as the cards go unreturned.

Addy's daycare is having a Mother's Day brunch on Friday. I can't wait!
Tuesday, May 01, 2007
Update....going to be long
It's hard to find the time anymore to sit and collect my thoughts enough to post. Time is hard to come by. I've always heard that the transition from 2 to 3 is the biggest of all and it's true. I had to close down my side business this weekend. I had a craft and antique booth in an antique craft store and I just don't have the time to paint and sew like I used to now that Miss Addy is here. And frankly, I don't really even want to. My entire focus and attention is on her right now. Daily we're establishing that bond between a mother and a daughter and I still pinch myself when I listen to her laugh or watch her sleeping to think that I could be this lucky. Addy is the love of my love and I know that we were meant to live this life together.

She's doing so well in daycare and they love her there. The boys love to play with her and make her laugh and she adores them. My mother and mother-in-law are head over heels for her, too. She is saying more and mroe words every day that I didn't even know she knew. She'll just come out with it and them I'm amazed.

I did speak to Early Intervention about what to do with DH. I don't know how to deal with him anymore. I don't even know how to describe him but he's frustrated I guess is the best word. He wants Addy to act like the boys did, laughing all the time, secure in their surroundings. She gets all excited when he picks her up from daycare everyday and she's fine with him until I get home and then she cries, she wants to be with me and be held and he wants her to just continue on doing her thing and not be so clingy. I don't mind at all that she wants to be attached at the hip, I've been waiting my whole life for a daughter and if this is where she wants to be, that's fine with me. But, that takes time away from him and the housework and the laundry. Maybe he's jealous?

I can't get it through his head that he can't compare them because the boys never went through what's she's gone through, she was taken from her mother at birth, taken from her foster mother, now she's with us and she has had to adjust to a whole new set of people and surroundings in daycare, too. I think she's doing so amazingly well under the circumstances, not to mention the fact that she's only 23 months! I guess I don't have too much sympathy for him when he starts whining. I just want to smack him upside the head and tell him to grow up already.

How do I get him to come around? Are there any books that would help or experiences or advice you can share? Early Intervention is going to check around to see if she can come up with any resources to help him through this. It's just going on barely 4 months since we got our referral and 3 months since she moved in and I think his expectations of the perfect happy baby are letting him down. I don't even know if it's that. He's under tremendous stress with his mother's Alzheimer's but so am I! I don't know what to do anymore. He loves her and plays with her and feeds her and dresses her but the minute the whining and crying starts, he seems to almost shut down.

I know this post is rambling and possibly half incoherent but I just don't know what to do anymore. I've spent the last year reading on all the problems dealing with hurt children and how to help them but how do I help my husband deal with the adjustment? I don't ever recall reading anything on this and I never expected it, either. I don't know what to do. I shudder to even think of it getting to an impass - giving her back would never be an option to me and I don't even know if it would be for him but if there comes a point where he can't handle it anymore, could we end up divorced over this? I don't know. I'm just praying that time will heal everything.