Springtime Nuggets

Life is flying by right now! So many cherished moments happening, so many exciting moments coming up. Here’s what A has been up to… love that boy so much!!

:: I do my quick pilates almost every morning. Every now and then he likes to join me.

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:: All of a sudden he has taken an interest in picking out his own clothes and dressing himself. More often than not his clothes are both inside out and backwards, but he’s so proud that he accomplished the task. He has his own style!

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:: He loves anything with an engine… has for a long time, but now he wants to understand how it works and why it needs to be done. This day he spent our whole time at the park monitoring the mulch distribution.

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:: He continues to love building on project days. He has a shelf full of all the projects he has built.

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:: We went to a fun Spring picnic. It was simple entertainment with inflatable slides and bouncy houses… and he got to sit in a fire truck. He loved it.


:: Beach! He loves the beach… which is awesome for me too.

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:: Super A got this costume as a party favor. He still loves to play with it all the time, endless possibilities for his imagination.


:: We got to enjoy the airshow with him. He was not so interested in watching the planes do their flying tricks. But was very patient to wait in the long lines to get to sit in or walk through the planes.


:: We finally got to take him strawberry picking. I couldn’t wait for the season, I just knew he would love it.

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:: We took him to his first sporting event. He was mesmerized! I guess once you’ve been to so many it’s easy to overlook just how many things are competing for your attention.

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:: Jesse (ever the geek) tweeted the team that it was A’s first game and they brought an autographed ball to our seats. Jesse rocks!

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:: A continues to grow in kindness and compassion, but this was the cutest thing ever!! We picked up Nana from the airport. Jesse pulled the first bag off the conveyor belt, without any prompting A followed suit with the smaller bag. He pulled it all the way to the car for her. What a gentleman!

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:: Easter Bunny cake, the tradition continues.

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:: We equally enjoyed blueberry picking. We were encouraged to eat as many as we like, and he did just that.

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:: Baseball. We just finished his last game of the season. What a great learning experience for him. His coach was fantastic, we really appreciated him! He told the kids at the first practice that more importantly than baseball skill, he wanted them to be a good listener and follow directions. We were amazed how much he grew in these areas. And watching the baseball games was a blast too!


What will he do next??…


Our little A has been reunified with his parents! This was the goal for his case plan all along and is considered a happy ending… even though it doesn’t feel so happy right now. We miss him so much and everything we see around our house is a constant reminder of his absence. However, on the other side of the story his parents are beyond excited to finally have him back with them. We have been receiving emails from them about how their first couple of days are going and it sounds like they are doing a great job. I know they had to work really hard to comply with all the agency requirements in order to get him back, so we are truly happy for them… but still sad for ourselves at the same time.

The call came on Tuesday to let us know that he would need to be reunified by the weekend. We were stunned because throughout the case plan we had been told that his parents’ visitations would progress from four hour visits, to eight hour visits, to overnight visits, to weekend visits before reunification would happen. So we always figured we would have at least a couple of weeks of warning before he would ever leave. Bam! Just like that, the whole plan changed. My mind started racing right away trying to figure out how we would get him ready to move out that quickly. After being here for six months, we needed to remember which things were his that he came with, which things were given to him as birthday presents or other gifts, and which things we were keeping that we had set up before he even came to us.

:: We decided to take A out to eat that night to put the news out of our minds for one more night. We had taken him out to eat very few times since it’s so hard to do with my food allergies. We though that would be a fun change… and it was!

:: The next morning we sat him down and explained to him best we could that it was time for him to go live with mommy and daddy, and not live with Jesse and Kristin anymore. We told him that we were so glad he got to live us, but that it now it was their turn to take care of him again. We must have reminded him a million times in those last days that even though he was leaving we still loved him very much and will always love him.

:: Wednesday the three of us had a great day playing together all day. I was just trying to memorize every second of him playing in our house, knowing that he wouldn’t be here in a couple of days.

:: Thursday morning we brought A over to his parents’ house for him to be able to check out his new room and get to play in his new house before he just moved in there all of a sudden. Even though this wasn’t required we and his bio parents all agreed that it would be best for him and help him feel more comfortable. We so much enjoyed his parents’ hospitality as they welcomed us into their home for the first time that day. They allowed us to get to see his new room too, and we all talked for a while about A’s schedule, likes, and more!

:: Both Thursday and Friday we had dinner and play time at Nana and Papa’s house, with Dewey and ‘Cole. They’ve been such a big part of his life too, so we really wanted us all to be together for our last dinner (times two, ha ha).

:: Saturday morning we finished packing up all of his clothes, toys, books, and many other items and drove him to his parents’ house. A was silent the whole ride over there. I think he kinda understood what was happening when he saw us carrying in all of his things, but at the same time he was still confused about what was going on. When we left their house I cried all the way home, knowing he was gone.

:: Saturday afternoon we got to see A again! We had made plans weeks ago to attend an event that A’s parents had invited us to. Little did we know A would be arriving with them instead of us. It felt different knowing that he was now in their care instead of ours, but I think it made the transition a little easier on A to get have all four us there to play with him. It was so hard to leave him all over again and head home without him.

:: Sunday we did absolutely NOTHING. We slept in and then sat around all day watching television and moping… and waiting for more email updates from A’s parents. Fortunately for us we got about five email updates about how their first day back together as a family was going. It was completely making our day just to know that A was fine and happy.

A’s parents are being awesome about wanting us to have a continued role in his life. We are so grateful to have the opportunity to keep visiting him occasionally and they said that he could still come to church with us too. They are nice people and I think they will do a great job raising A from here. I still remember how scared I was to meet them for the first time. I honestly thought they would hate us because we had their son and they wanted him back. But they are not like that at all… they appreciate how much we have loved A and now we’ve gained new friends!

We can be praying for A and his parents as they transition into this new chapter in their lives. Pray for renewed energy each day to keep up with A, for patience as they learn how to be a family again, and for some other challenges they are still working on. That’s what I prayed for ourselves the whole time we had A, so I’m sure they could use the same prayers!

Nuggets: After Vacation

We’ve been home from vacation for several days now. One thing we learned over the last couple of weeks is that vacation with a two year old is anything but relaxing. We did have lots of fun, but I think we are more tired now than we left for vacation!

I think A had a lot of fun too, and he got to experience so many new things. I think we’d make the same decision if we had it to do all over again. It was so important to us to take this vacation with him knowing that it will likely be our only opportunity for a vacation while he is staying with us and we don’t know how long it will be before he is able to go on another vacation once he goes back to his biological family.

:: One of my highlights from our trip was our beef canning day. That was the one thing that I absolutely wanted to fit into vacation, so I’m happy that it worked out. My pantry looks so pretty with all those cans of yummy beef lined up in it!

:: Jesse got to be the best man in a wedding for a long-time friend of ours. It was great to be a part of their day. Their wedding was beautiful and the couple was all smiles. A had a little bit of a rough time during the hotel stay on the wedding weekend. I think maybe that was just to small of a space to stay with him, even though we spent very little time in the room. His favorite (and ours) part of the hotel was the fact that the pool there had a two foot shallow end. He loved being able to “swim” by himself since his feet could touch the bottom. We loved that we sit on the edge and watch him instead of having to hold him the whole time.

:: A also enjoyed getting to meet and play with Jesse’s cousin’s kids. They sure had fun running around Grandpa and Grandma’s house and exploring the farm together. Together the three of them picked apples and blackberries, and picked up branches that came down in a storm.

:: As is usual, we left the farm with many yummy produce gifts! I sure enjoy getting to use food when I get to know exactly where it came from. A and I even made apple sauce with the apples we picked from Grandpa and Grandma’s tree. He peeled most all of the apples by himself with the apple peeler. And the apple sauce is delicious!!

:: Our official foster care license certificate came in the mail the other day… pretty cool! It’s amazing how much we’ve learned from A in the short time that he’s lived with us. We sure love having him here even though taking care of him has been harder than we expected. We’ve decided that when A is ready to leave we’ll definitely be ready for an extended break before we accept another placement. One little person living here has sure worn us out!

Now we need to work on getting A back into the routine we had going before we went on vacation. It seems as though he’s forgotten the routine completely. He’s been extra challenging the last few days and hopefully everything else getting back to normal will help him be back to normal too.