A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, or the kind of car I drove...but the world may be different because I was important in the life of a child. --Forest E. Witcraft
I am thankful for my family, both the one I grew up in and the one I am raising now. Sunday afternoon we celebrated Thanksgiving so my sister could be with us, as her work schedule did not allow joining us earlier. We had a wonderful time just being together and totally stuffing ourselves! May said a beautiful grace before we ate. I am so proud of how she is blossoming and maturing.
Sweets was not able to join us, but she did call and have the opportunity to talk to everyone. I think that lifted her spirits some. She keeps telling me how much she misses us. My heart aches for her. I hope and pray her dad can make some positive decisions for her soon.
Monday is another day and the start of a very busy week. Various kids have four concerts this week and four performances next week. Wow!
Remember when you were told, "Unless you can say something nice, don't say anything at all"? Well, that's where I am right now.
I didn't hear from Sweets for three days. Two calls were not returned. On Thursday, we did talk on the phone and I was able to wish her Happy Thanksgiving. She seemed to be doing all right, although she was full of "I miss you."
Today she called and said her dad said she couldn't come to my house this weekend. She said it was because she told on her dad to a person of authority in Lil Sis's case. I talked to her dad, and he repeated that she wasn't allowed to come to my house, saying Sweets was not listening to him and that she said she hated Lil Sis. Keep in mind, these two girls have never been able to go more than about an hour without getting into a fight, even with good adult supervision.
I'm worried, but praying hard. Although Sweets is most worried about missing our Thanksgiving celebration on Sunday, I'm more worried that this is the start of something else. I'm trying hard to trust God, but this is when I want so much to be in control and it is so obvious that I am not!
This weekend we had multiple celebrations as Sweets turned 9. I took her out Friday with May, and we had a nice girls evening out. It wasn't planned that way, but things changed, and Buddy just couldn't hold it together, so he and BB stayed home with my mom and went to bed.
Saturday morning was a full choir rehearsal where cake was served in honor of Sweets and a couple others for their birthdays. That afternoon, a couple close friends came over and we had a small family celebration for Sweets followed by dinner out with my parents at one of my, and now the kids, favorite restaurants that serves the best fajitas anywhere.
Today was Sweets' official birthday party at a pizza joint by her dad's house. Other than all the guests (including dad) arriving more than forty minutes late (for an hour and a half party), everyone had fun. She enjoyed herself and got to play with more tokens that she has ever had on one day before.
Lil Sis seems to be doing just fine. Multiple of the cousins are girls her age, and she enjoys playing with them. I think she has been tossed around so much in her short life that this move did not phase her as much as one would expect. She was happy, and it didn't seem to bother her that Sweets left for the last two days.
I talked with Sweets' dad, and he admitted that he had intended to stop letting Sweets go to my house for six months after Lil Sis moved in. Fortunately, he has had a change of heart. I hope that sticks. As of now, I am picking Sweets up next Friday evening for the weekend. He wants her to spend the first two days of the break with him. That works out fine, since we are celebrating Sunday due to my sister's work schedule.
I went over the hectic schedule for the two weeks following as Sweets' choir performs four times in ten days at four different locations. So far so good!
Lil Sis was moved to Sweets' dad this week after fourteen months. He barely manages with Sweets, and yet he now has a six year old to care for as well. Today was her first day in kindergarten at Sweets' school Apparently, all went well.
He is jumping through all the hoops right now. That is good. The question is how long can he keep it up?
The girls are enjoying each other, but I'm very skeptical that this is truly a honeymoon period. Usually when they play together for more than a couple of hours, they start fighting. Maybe the dependence upon each other will cause them to get along better.
The girls' maternal relatives who have been caring for Lil Sis are beside themselves. They can't understand how CPS has painted them the bad guys and moved Lil Sis just like they did Sweets. It is such an iffy situation. It is definitely not in the girls' best interests, but that doesn't matter when it is reunification with a parent. All that matters is whether the parent is minimally (and I mean MINIMALLY) adequate.
Sweets has been telling me that her dad keeps saying once Lil Sis moves in, she won't be able to come to my house anymore. Last night her dad said Sweets was going to stay with him this weekend. I reminded him that she has a major choir rehearsal on Saturday along with birthday plans. The choir is several miles away, and I know he doesn't want to get up Saturday morning. We had also jointly agreed to have her party at a pizza place near his house on Sunday so all her cousins could come (I'm paying). He gave in, but said she can't come next weekend, which just happens to be Thanksgiving.
I'm trying to deal with this one day at a time. We'll see how he is handling parenting both girls after a week. My family is getting together next Sunday instead of Thursday, so my hope is that he will at least let her come Saturday night and Sunday after spending Thursday through Saturday at home.
Our beloved dog of over eight years left us on Monday. Sandy was such a sweet dog and so loved children. Sweets grew up with her almost from the beginning. My sisters picked this special pet for my family because of her disposition and tolerance with all the little kids.
Up until the last week, she never even let us know that she was having trouble. Then all of a sudden she virtually quit eating and drastically slowed down. A visit to the vet Friday determined that she was seriously ill. I prepared the kids, especially Sweets when she came for the weekend.
By Sunday I was worried Sandy wouldn't make it through the night. The kids had a chance to say good-bye. There were lots of tears Sunday night and Monday morning. My sister came and went to the vet again with me.
This weekend we are watching a little boy for respite. He is such a delightful child!
Unfortunately, BB only saw green. BB was so jealous any time we gave attention to our guest. BB also has a lot to learn about sharing. Our visiting munchkin has been a great sport. He just points and says "Baby" whenever BB lashes out.
Yesterday and last night our visitor had terrible diarrhea, which resulted in a NASTY skin irritation in a very delicate area. I ended up taking him to the ER as it got worse between this morning and naptime. We were in and out in less than three hours, of which one hour was waiting for a test result. I SO love our Children's Hospital! Our poor little guy now has two ointments and some oral antibiotics to help him. The nurses couldn't believe how calm he was. They insisted he should have been screaming, but all he did was whimper one short time. I just want to cuddle this little one, as he has obviously had to sooth himself for much of his young life. Hopefully tomorrow will bring great improvement before he goes home.
Note to self: Next time get copy of form giving placement foster parent permission to seek medical care AND note from such placement parent giving me permission to seek medical care. (Luckily we were able to reach placement parent on her cell phone.)
We eat out entirely too often. Usually, I just give in, because it is easier to let someone else do the cooking, and I get tired of hearing little voices not like what gets put in front of them at home. I justify this bad habit by saying I don't have time to cook, that my day is too busy and hectic already.
Well, today we actually ate at home for all three meals. I'm not sure when we did this last. But we made it, and no one suffered! Breakfast was simple, but no one minded. For lunch we cleaned out leftovers (most in styrofoam) from the fridge.
For dinner, we had a masterpiece, even if some didn't like all of it. I put a roast in the crock pot this morning, with ingredients to make a nice mushroom gravy. We had white rice, the old fashioned kind, and a lovely vegetable medley of zucchini, yellow squash, mushrooms, and tomatoes.
May and I even made a macaroni salad to have later in the week for lunches! I'm telling myself that I'm going to start being better at eating at home.
I do confess, though. When we went shopping at C*stco, I did get the kids a little treat between meals!