Tuesday, June 30, 2009


Sunday we went to church and had a relaxing afternoon. Monday night we took Selena, Kieanna, and Cora (Selena and Kieanna are in the second picture, last two on the right and Cora is in the first picture) to a concert. I got tricked into this concert. Jennifer got the tickets..Tabitha told me Oh mom Jen has tickets for the girls to see Demi L in concert. I can't take them I'll be out of town. Jen can't go she's leaving to close on her new house and Staisha doesn't really need to go because of her being pregnant and all. ( Although I did rope Staisha into going with ME. She wouldn't go by herself.) I know you and the girls will enjoy it. HAHA I don't know how they did it. But I ended up in the Gwinett Arena with Ten thousand tweens screaming. I know the girls enjoyed it and and won't ever forget it but wow am I old. I remember taking Tabitha and Jennifer to The New Kids On The Block concert, but I remember I liked it too! Oh well. Some more memories made. Oh and we had to pay $3.50 for a DRINK! My kids better love me!

Saturday, June 27, 2009


We took the kids and went bowling a few days back, they really had a blast. I don't really like to bowl but I like to watch the kids.

Today has been a hot one. The kids played outside a while then played in the pools. We have 4 kiddie size and one large (do it yourself) adult size. Everyone is in their rooms now watching a movie. They do not have cable in their rooms but everyone has a TV and VCR/or DVD player. The little boys lost theirs for a while because they broke the wire off that goes to the DVD. We have every game system there is. The children aren't allowed to play everyday but have played much more this summer than during the school year. The boys have a Jr. size pool table that they have put to good use lately. The girls prefer board games or clothes. When I say clothes I mean they try on outfit after outfit, and ask each other "does this look better with sandals or flats? or does this necklace go better or the other one." They are as concerned at 12 about how they look as I was at 17. The little girls (6-10) play barbies, Hannah Montannah, High school musical, bratz or some such other type of doll house stuff. The little boys 6 and 8 mostly want to play outside, if forced to stay inside they will play legos or rescue heros. I am enjoying sumer with school being out and getting to sleep later, but the kids are ready to go back. I've done some school shopping already but still have much more to go.

Keith and I are going to watch Pride and Prejuice. My favorite movie. Let's hope the kids will watch their movie long enough for me to finish mine.

Friday, June 26, 2009

our House

This is our house. We have built onto it 4 times. I love my house! I hope all of our kids have great memories growing up here. It is on the same property I grew up on. Stability is a big part of my childrens healing. A while back we were talking of moving and not one kid wanted to. A big new house did not entice them. So I guess we will stay put.
I took Daivon to the Dr. about his wrist and it turns out it is not broken it's just a sprain. Thank you Lord! He is very active in sports at school and in band and a cast would not have worked for him. He and Anthony are going into high school. Both are A-B students with great attitudes. I am very proud of them.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Today was a busy day on the road. We were up and out at 7 am. One child sees a psychologist in Athens once a week. It is about a 45 minute drive. It wasn't too bad at first but it's been a year now and I'm ready for the visits to change from weekly to bi-weekly. Or monthly would be even better. 5 other kids see therapist. Not all on the same day, and for all different reasons. We have used the same psychologist for about 8 years now. I really like her, shes a mom and a christian as well as a good psychologist. All of those combined make it healing ground.

The little girls are playing dress up. Faith just came in and showed me her "show". too cute! Summer has slowed down to a drag for some of the kids. We have been skating, bowling, to the lake, rented movies and games, gone to the park , shopped and walked the mall, all more than once. Now they want to move to something else. Mom I'm bored... I think I need to start assigning some cleaning chores to those so bored. Some have books from the library. Maybe if everyone reads one book we could do something fun.

Dinner tonight is spaghetti. I'm going to try a new recipe for garlic cheese biscuits. I need to run to the store for some more salad dressing. With so many ,everyone likes something different. I guess I'll go make a cake for dessert. I need to ask Staisha what kind, being she might want something special. We did find out her baby is a BOY! Just what they wanted . Really what we both wanted. A healthy baby. The doc said everything looked great. So we are excited. Now off to bake a cake...

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Most of the time when people find out we have such a large family, one of the first questions ask is What do you cook? So I thought I'd give an example of what I (we) cook. I can't take all the credit because my older teenagers cook just about as much as I do. At about 12 years old they want to start helping so that is when I start training. YES sometimes it's more trouble but they eventually learn and then they are proud and want to show off their skills so it helps me out a lot. Now by the time they turn 16 or 17 the fun part is over and they are ready to let the younger ones do it all. SO far it has worked out well as all of the kids are like doorsteps.

Breakfast this morning was pancakes. It took 3 boxes and 1 large bottle of syrup.

Lunch was grilled cheese sandwiches and bean soup.

Snack was fresh peaches.

Supper or Dinner is Blackeyed peas with ham cooked in, cucumber salad, macaroni and cheese and cornbread.

We cook pretty much the same as everyone else just much more. I do lots of stews, soups, and casseroles. And the kids always want bread, either biscuits or cornbread some times garlic toast or rolls.

If I can figure out how to post pictures I"ll post some of the house. It's big but not big enough.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Best Friends

Staisha is my youngest birth daughter. She is 20 years old and was married a year yesterday, which happen to be Fathers Day. She is also going to have a baby in November! We find out what it is tomorrow. They want a boy I want a girl..Mostly I want a healthly baby!!

Staisha was only 5 when we started fostering. She had to share more than any of the other children because of her age. When we first started fostering we took in lots of little ones. I was in heaven. Staisha understands my desire for adoption/mothering moreso than the other older ones do. I always share kids that are available with her and ask her what she thinks. I ask the other girls too, I just don't always get the OH Yea, mom go ahead sign from them, as I do from Staisha. She is living 2 doors down from me ,and I couldn't be happier. Tabitha(my oldest) is also living next door now with my 2 grand babies. I love having her (and my grandbabies) close. They lived in Texas for a while and I sure did miss them. Jennifer is moving to Tennessee in July. I'm thrilled! She's going to Vanderbilt for her Doc. degree. I sure am gonna miss her. I can truly say my grown children are my best friends. I hope I have this same reltationship with all my kids. Brian is another story for another day. He and I are too much alike and don't see eye to eye. I love him though. With all my heart.

Doreese is 17. My oldest adopted child. My how time does fly. It seems yesterday she was crying because she was afraid of the hair dryer at 4 years old. She is a great kid. In fact they all are. I am blessed to be their mom.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Fathers Day

Happy Fathers day all! It has been a good and stressfull day for us. All the kids showered Keith with lots of love and kisses, hand made cards and well wishes.

It also brings back memories of the bio dads. Some have some good memories while others have only memories they wish they could forget. And yet still others can't remember anything at all. All of these emotions make a whirlwind temperment. Two have gotton into fights over nothing, and two of the boys have said words not allowed. I know I have to be understanding and patient as they work through some of the stuff, but I will be glad when it is all behind us and everthing is back to normal.

Two different bio dads have been called and wished a Happy Fathers day. I allow this not for their benefit but for the kids. They feel they are stepping up to the plate to do the right thing even when their fathers did not.

The grown kids took Keith out to lunch after church today. I know he loved it.

So another holiday we survived, more memories made, and more blessings abound.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Learners Permits

Well today 4 kids got learners liscence. I was so proud, and then I thought WHAT was I thinking? THey sure were happy. Now to teach them how to drive?????Maybe I can call in some bio family ??

We saw The Proposal at the theater for a date night tonight. It was really good. Ate at Olive Garden and visited Keith's dad. Over all it was a good day. No one acted out, except for a mishap while having a water baloon fight.

Now for some sleep.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

My Hearts Desire

During all the placement stuff with my new sib group, a mom contacted me about her baby. I had her first three children in foster care at one time. She was the family of my husbands first cousin. The first 3 children were adopted by a family member from their fathers side. It had been about 10 years since she gave birth to her youngest in her first kids. Truthfully noone thought she could have any more kids. However, she had a little boy. He was the light of her life for a few months. But addictions are a hard thing to overcome and her old habits kicked back in. I started keeping Austin for days at the time. THEN we found out she was pregnant again. She new she wasn't in any shape to take on another child. Just a few weeks after the baby was born she let me keep them until she could get on her feet. By the time Faith was 3 and a half months old she gave me permenant guardianship. Austin was 17 months old. They are now 6 (almost 7) and 5. It took forever to get the adoption finalized, but we did. Mom stills sees them ocassionally. Austin still has a bond with her even after he was placed at an early age. They are well grounded. Being here at such an early age has given them stability. They can't remember anything else. They are both the youngest and both spoiled rotten

All was going well. The sib group of 5 had settled in. Austin and Faith was doing great. I felt the old tug again. Keith really wasn't willing to adopt again. We watched a special on TV about little girls in China. I begged Keith to please lets take a 2nd morgtage out on the house and adopt from China. He was very firm in this. No we could not afford to do this. IF God wanted me to have a little girl from China then he would send me one. So I talked him into updating our home study to adopt again from the state. Our last sib group didn't come from the GA foster care system. Our homestudy was updated quickly and everything went smooth. Another adoptive mom that worked in the adoption world called me one day and ask if I was still interested in adoption of an Asian child. ( Another thank you to her here! ) YES! Yes , I was. She put me in contact with a mom who had adopted a little girl from CHINA that wasn't a good fit for her family. Little did I know at the time but I truly beleive God put this desire in my heart just about the time my Katelynn was born. He also worked it out beautifully for her to come into my family. I Love the mom who went to China, got her, took care of her and then let me have her. We call the mom her foster mother, because some of the other kids had foster moms and she understands this. When talking to her one day I was explaining that this mom took care of her until I could come and get her, she looked up at me and ask" MOM what took you so long?" Needless to say she IS the desire of my heart. She was 3 when we got her she is now 7. She still has some issues but who doesn't in our house! ME included.

Katelynn had been adopted for 2 years when a worker called me and ask if we might be intersted in a sib group of two . I knew I was. It didn't take much to talk Keith into it one more time. So we updated our home study. We didn't get it done before they found a family for the two, but another group was presented to us and once again I fell in love. It was a sib group of 3. One of the kids has mild mental retardation. At first I was afraid. Could I do it? Could I love her? The other two children had minor problems. Well after we met them in person I truly fell in love. She is the easiest child to parent. Cora had some issues at first but soon overcame them with my parenting style. All three kids are doing great. Hannah is targeted to be in regular classes with no IEP by her middle school years. Isaiah is finally working at grade level. Both passed CRCT and were proud they did. Hannah has some attachemnt issues, not disorder ,just issues. She has made progress. Her therapist is one we have used for years with the other kids and she sees improvement as well. SO all are doing well. Now that you know how we came to be I'll be telling of some of the disabilities, struggles, diagnosis and problems or I should say challanges we face daily.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Rest of the Story

The first child we adopted was a little boy I had been keeping since birth. I loved him from the moment he was born. His mom was my step-sister. She was a lot younger than me, and her dad and my mom divorced, so she didn't spend much time with us. He was 3 when DFCS took him into custody. By the time they got around to termination 3 years had passed, so he was 6 when the actual adoption took place. He is 16 now.

The second adoption was a sib group of 3. The day they called and ask me to take the kids I didn't even ask Keith. I just said yes. They too were loved instantly. He came home to a 4 year old a 2 year old and a nine month old. The parents were from EL-Salvador, the kids were born here. They went back to their birth father once but he wasn't able to care for them so we got them back. He stays in contact and for the most part has been a good connection for the kids. I'm told the mother went back to El Salvador. The children are now 17, 15, and 13. Boy does time fly.

So we are still fostering, and have 5 adopted and 2 birth still at home. A distnant relative showed up one day and announced that DFCS had her children and were going to terminate her rights. She ask if we would take the kids? I have to say I was really torn. This mom loved (still loves) her kids. She didn't have any resources or the IQ to take on raising three (1 special needs) boys. We decided it was the best thing for the boys. They fit right in and were loved as if they had been here all along. We were family after all and they could maintain some contact with her. They were 3, 5, and 7. They are now 10 (almost 11), 13, and 15.

At this time DFCS said OK you can't foster any more! It broke my heart. I would still be fostering if we could. I felt so strong about adoption. I really prayed a lot about this. I was told of an adoption agency that worked with famlies to adopt only. So I checked them out and really loved them. After I contacted them, and we had our homestudy done, DFCS did call me and say Oh yea, you can still adopt , just not foster. Well I had been shown the door. We were already approved through our new agency so we stayed with them.

It didn't take long , and we were matched with a sib group of 5. Yes, 5. This group has been my hardest by far. I'm sure I will have lots of post about them. They are also some of my most smartest kids. SOme of them sure have college potential. They are african-american-white. I can't spell caucation? Their ages at the time of placement were 5, 7, 8, 10,and 11. 4 girls and one boy. Because they were not placed with me in foster care to began with , they suffered lots of moves and seperation. They had also been abused. All of the other children had been taken for neglect. This has made a great difference in the way they react to life. They are 11, 12(almost 13) 14, 15, and 16. They are doing GREAT! Oh we still have our ups and downs , but they have come so far. I truly love them.

Ok now we have 12 adopted and 4 by birth. But my hearts desire wasn't filled yet! .....

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


Keith and I married and started our family right away. I can't say I didn't want a baby, I just didn't expect one so quickly. So Tabitha was born Oct. Jennifer followed 17 months later. OK 2 kids I can do this. BIRTH CONTROL doesn't work for everybody. The pill worked for about one year, then a miscarriage. This was much worse than having a baby. 2 years later Brian was born. IUD worked for 4 years, another miscarriage. Doc said use something over the counter and let your body get back to normal then we will talk BC again. NOPE! Pregnant 2 months later. Now you would think after having 4 children that I would have taken the hint that I was meant to have kids. At the time I didn't think I would ever want another baby, so I had my tubes burnt, cut, taken out whatever. I just didn't want any more kids. We had built a house, both of us had good jobs and I thought my life was on a well worn path. Raise your kids, pay your morgtage, futher your career. NOT! When Staisha was about 4 years old I saw an ad in the paper about the great need for foster parents. I wrestled with this for some time, and decided it was something I wanted to do. Now to talk Keith into it. Not as hard as I thought. So we took the classes and became foster parents. I loved it! I got to know the parents and the kids and really felt like I was helping the kids as well as the parents. Well it didn't end there. As my story is so long I'll continue later.....

Saturday, June 13, 2009

blogging by dummy

First post. I have been following adoption blogs for several years now and just haven't taken the time to start one myself, so here goes. With the help of my 20 year old daughter I've taken my first plunge. I have very little time as we have a large family, and I can't sit still. Even when I'm home alone during the school day I like to be busy. I thought I might journal our lives and be able to look back and see where we've been and maybe get a glimpse of where I'd like to (need to) go. If I could look back over the last 30 years I'm sure I'd laugh, cry, be shocked, faint , and would probably (defintely) like to edit some of it. My journey as a parent started almost 30 years ago. I've come a long way and learned sooo much. 22 kids later and I still have sooo much more to learn. Here's hoping this will help me connect to parents/people who are on this journey with me.