Monday, December 30, 2013

Shopping for baby clothes

This weekend I went to Kmart, which is something I don't do very often, and I was surprised to find that they had clothes and coats on sale for 50% off.  I got my six year old some shirts and then wondered over to the baby stuff....because I can't resist when I go to stores and I, of course, found some cute little baby girl clothes.

These two outfits were on sale at 50% off and I got them for about $4 each.  I couldn't say no even though they only had them in newborn sizes.

Is the booty not adorable on these!?!?!  

I can't wait to do some serious girl shopping when I actually have a little girl in this house :)

Were you as nutso as I am when it comes to shopping for a child that is not even in your home yet??

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Tag Blankies

My sister is having a baby, a little girl who was due on December 23rd but is being a little Diva and making everyone wait for her.  My sister has two boys and a girl and this little Diva will even things out and make it two boys and two girls.  I have three boys and have always wanted a girl so I am loving shopping for this little baby girl.  

Now, knowing that I am going to be a foster parent to a little girl, I feel like I get to be a huge part of this pregnancy and it is kinda sorta like I am having a baby too....just not having to go through labor (score!!!).  

I have been scouring blogs and pinterest looking at all kinds of baby girl nurseries and clothing.  All of this planning and I was so eager to start somewhere.  I know that this is a foster blog but me being me, it is going to be a little bit of a mixture of foster and crafting blog.  

I started my first project today and wanted to share it with the world.  

This was the start to the Tag Blankie...

I cut out a square 10x10 inches in this adorable flowery PINK the pink :)

Then I cut out two 3.5x10 inch strips and then cut two 3.5x16 inch strips for the sides of the square.

This is just a picture showing me cutting the strips for the sides.

Then I sewed the strips on to the square....while talking to my sister on Skype as she timed her contractions.

After sewing the shorter strips on each side of the square, I ironed the sides down as shown in the picture above.

The front view of my project.

Then I sewed on the longer two strips as shown above.

Again, I ironed the sides down and then I cut the sides to where all of the sides were even in size to the square.

At this point, I cut down 29 pieces of ribbons.  I used seven different kinds and cut down four of each....all except this one below...

Love you to pieces

Too cute and I had to add it to the blankie because no matter who gets this blankie, I will love them to pieces.

Then comes the fun part, sewing on the ribbons.

I am OCD and had to have all of my ribbons in order and I set them up before hand so everything was nice and organized.

Here are all of the ribbons after being sewn on the blankie.

Now I pinned the square to a piece of Minky fabric to prepare for sewing.

Here is the result of my pinned down Minky fabric which was turned right side in.

Now it was time to sew the fabric together.

I sewed right below the first stitch.

Now it's time to turn the fabric around.

After turning the fabric around, I sewed along the first square to attach the two fabrics just because I didn't like the way the fabrics were separated.  

This is what the finished product looked like.  I LOVE this tag blankie and can't wait till some little cutie pie is loving on it too!!!

This is the back of the blankie

A close up of the square sewed onto the back.

I loved these tag blankies so much that I made three of them today and told my sister that she gets the pick of the litter (hehe) and she is still trying to make up her mind.

This is the one my sister is leaning towards and I think it is because of the green in there....she loves green!!!

So cute....just love how bright and colorful these are!!

Here are all three of the tag blankies together.  They are about 16x16 inches and are perfect for a baby to love.

I just realized a few days ago that I start my orientation in less than two weeks and that means that I have to actually start buying baby stuff and getting ready for a little one in my home.  I have all kinds of ideas about what kind of nursery theme I want to have and it means that I have a lot of sewing to do :) I can't wait!!!

I got the pattern for the Tag Blankie from here.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Where I am in the process

In my last post I talked about a woman that needed someone to take care of her daughter while she is incarcerated.  The end result in that matter is that the little girl ended up going to the grandmother, which is a great thing for all parties involved.  The hardest thing is that grandma lives out of country and therefor had to take the little girl with her and the mother will not get to see her little girl again until she is finished in prison.

There was a twist to the story in the sense that the mom might get extradited out of the country and be able to finish her sentence in her home country and that would be great for her daughter as well as for the new baby due in May.  If she does not go to her country when the new baby is born, she is going to need someone to take the new baby for her until she finishes her sentence and is able to go to her home country.

I talked to her before she was incarcerated and gave her my information if she needs me to help with the new baby when it is born and she was going to pass the information on to her lawyer.  I doubt I will ever get a call and I hope for her sake that she is sent to her home country and does not have to have her baby here and be separated from it.

In regards to my status on becoming a foster parent.....

I had to complete a financial statement and send it in to the foster care agency that I am talking to.  The reason why I needed to complete a financial statement is because I am a full time student and do not work.  The agency wanted to make sure that I have enough money to support myself and my boys and am financially able to be a foster parent.  I let a week or two pass before I called the agency to see if they received my paper work.  I left a message for the woman I spoke to last time and got a phone call yesterday from the woman that I will be in contact with from now on.  I am going to refer to her as CW (caseworker) from this point forward.  CW told me that she is sending me a packet in the mail that will have all the paperwork I need to fill out and have ready for my orientation on January 10th.  I will then be in PRIDE classes till the 29th of January and have my 32 hours completed and be able to start the next phase in the process.

I need to have some references and I have spoken to three people so far and am hoping that is enough, if not then I have two more people that I can talk to about giving me a reference.  It is really hard to get references when you haven't lived somewhere very long!!

I am really excited about all of this and am hoping that since I will complete my PRIDE classes in a few weeks instead of 9 weeks like I would have if I would have gone through the state that all of this goes a little bit faster.  I am so excited to start the process and be able to open my home to a little love bug.

How long did it take you from start to finish to become licensed?  How long did it take you to get your first placement?

I would love to get as much information from you guys as possible :)

Also, what is your experience with going through the state or going through an agency?  At first I was going to go through the state but they don't even know when they are going to be offering PRIDE classes next and they seem to move at a snails pace compared to this agency.

Merry Christmas everyone!!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

State or Agency....or a whole different direction

I have been reading foster blogs like a mad woman in the last few weeks....I have a handful of foster blogs that I have been reading for a few years but since getting serious about fostering, I have been reading blogs like a mad woman.  I am like a sponge, trying to absorb as much information as possible and loving reading others stories.

I read that when starting out, I should look into both the local state agency as well as private agencies.  I started by calling the local DSS and learned that their PRIDE classes are not going to be until sometimes after the new year and well, I am an impatient person and can't wait!!  I called a few different agencies around here and learned that there is one agency that is just finishing up classes and the woman wants to start the next classes soon.  The only thing is, this woman was not as positive about the fact that I am a full time college student as the state agency was, therefor, making me question whether or not I am making the right decision or making me question if they are going to approve me financial wise?

The private agency I called told me that their PRIDE classes are currently being held every Friday night from 6-8 pm as well as every Saturday from 9-3 pm.  The classes are only four weeks because of how many hours are spent in class per week.  This is a schedule I could definitely do because of the convenience with being done in 4 weeks instead of 9 like the state agency does.  The private agency is going to send me a packet in the mail and included in that packet is a financial form that I have to fill out so they can figure out if I am financially able to foster.  I told the state agency the amount that I make per month and she wasn't worried at all but this lady was.....I dunno what to think of this?

In regards to the whole different direction as the title states....

There is this friend of a friend that has a little girl who just turned one years old in the end of August.  The mom is going to jail in the beginning of December and doesn't know what to do with her daughter while she is incarcerated.  She just announced about a month ago that she is expecting another baby....I have no idea how far along she is but her lawyer has made a deal with the DA that once the new baby is born, the mom gets to go to some sort of parenting rehab facility and she gets to have both of her children with her.

I am thinking about offering to take her daughter for her while she is incarcerated.  I know it probably isn't the best idea in the whole world but it beats this poor baby going to some random person that the mom sends her to just so that she doesn't have to turn her over to the state.  I am going to talk to the mom with my friend in the next few days and see what she says about me taking her daughter.  I am going to tell her that I will bring the little girl to see her at least once before the new baby is born (she is going to be about 6-7 hours away, in another state).

I have no idea what is going to happen but either way, there is going to be a little angel added to the family (whether it is one or ten or even twenty angels will only be one at a time).

What do you think about going with the state or private agency?  Which do you go through?  What do you think about this little girls situation and my decision to offer this to the mom?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Future Foster Mamma

It seems kind of weird to be writing this blog post or to have even created this blog.  I am actually doing this...I am beginning my journey to becoming a foster mamma.

It has always been my dream to become a foster parent and eventually adopt through foster care.  Years ago, I watched something on TV about a teenage boy who had been in foster care his whole life and he had never been adopted.  He was talking about his dream of having a forever family, a family that he could go home to when he was on break from college, a family to tell his friends about, someone to call to tell about his day, etc.  This had a huge impact on my life!  I realized right then and there that I wanted to adopt from foster care.

When I was in my late teens, early twenties, I lived in an apartment complex and the couple who ran the place were foster parents.  They usually only took in teenage girls, as their girls were teenagers and they wanted someone around the age of their daughters.  Well, one day they took in a call for siblings who were really young, maybe about 3 and 4 years old.  I met the kids and they instantly took a liking to me.  Those two kids had a huge impact on my life and I will never forget them.

I was married and I knew that I would never be able to foster or adopt with the man I was married to. I left him almost four years ago and in that time, my sons and I have been figuring life out.  I am a full time college student and I have three sons.  My boys are 16 (almost 17), 13, and 6.  We also have a little dog who is 2.5 years old.  We have decided that we are ready to open our home and our hearts to one child. I have always wanted a little girl and we have decided that we would like to try to foster a baby girl between the ages of 0-2 years old.  I know that is very specific but we are hoping it works out.  There are many factors that play into the age range, one of the many reasons is because my state allows a child to sleep in my room until the age of 3.  My big boys share a room and my little man is in his own room.  I would like to have a baby in the home who is able to be in my room with me and I think a baby would make it possible to keep going to school and foster at the same time.

I have taken the first steps by calling Child services and they sent me an information packet in the mail and now I am just waiting to find out when they have their information session.  They are not doing anymore this year and do not have their schedule for 2014 yet.  I am really excited to start and wish there was a way to fast track this.  I wonder if everyone goes into this so excited?  I just want to get started so we can get a placement as fast as possible.  I know it could take months if not a year to get this finished and really, I am ok with waiting.

I don't know if I should say this but I bought some baby clothes today at Target.  There was a HUGE sale and I got some Halloween baby clothing for between 0.29 and 1.29 each.  I couldn't pass it up and I figured that if I never use it myself, then I can always donate it next year to either thrift stores or to Foster Care.  I did buy two of each of the items because my sister is having a baby girl right before Christmas and I'm planning on giving her half of the stuff.

Alright, enough for now.  I will update this when I know more or when I have more ideas or questions.

One thing I want to ask you guys, when did you start buying stuff for your foster children?  In what part of the process?  I want to get stuff slowly, such as a changing table, I saw one at Goodwill today super cheap and I want to paint it and distress it to match my home and furniture.  I am wondering if I am totally rushing this or???  Thanks for any and all help.