Wednesday, January 29, 2014

A little bit of this and a little bit of that

As soon as I made the decision to become a foster parent and start the training I started wandering down the baby aisles in the stores.  I didn't buy anything but I allowed myself to dream about the baby that would one day be sleeping in a crib in my room. The baby that I would be dressing in pink baby clothes and the baby I would be able to put cute headbands on and the baby that would be loved on and adored by myself as well as my boys.  The baby that would be ours for as long as the baby needs us. 

I started sewing baby stuff a few weeks before the PRIDE training classes began and let me tell you.....sewing for a baby is soooooo much fun!!!  I had no idea that I could sew until I started dreaming about this little baby that would be entering our home.  Now....I can't get enough of the sewing machine!!!

I saw online somewhere, where a woman made a tag turtle and I loved the idea.  I wasn't exactly sold on the exact turtle that she made so I decided to come up with my own design for the turtle and well....

TA DA

                                    

The tag turtles are actually quite big and they are kind of like stuffed animals.  If I were to make them again, I would make the tags smaller (the lady did hers big and I think it would have looked better to make them smaller).  I still need to add eyes to the turtles but other than that, they are ready.  I made the blue tag turtle for my nephew whose birthday was Monday and decided to keep the pink tag turtle for my future foster baby.

This is what the bottom looks like.  I used Minky material on the bottom to make the tag turtles nice and soft and lovey.  I sure hope kids like them :) 


Here is the blue tag turtle on the tag blankie that I am sending to my sisters little ones....my niece who was born on New Years Eve and her big brother who just turned 2.


I found an awesome blanket tutorial here and decided to make the blanket for my future baby and I LOVE how it turned out!!  This blanket took me many hours to sew and then cut the back and in the end, it was worth every minute of it.  


Here is the crib that I got on a facebook yardsale site for $60 with my blanket in it.  


I also decided that I wanted some beautiful crib sheets so, I made some!!!  This one is so pretty and it just melts my heart to see these colors in a crib.....in my home!!!  Never thought I would see pink baby things in my home :)


Is this not the sweetest baby crib sheet you have ever seen.....was that biased or what???  LOL  This crib is so beautiful and I feel like I hit the jackpot with it!


I also scored big time with these two bins full of clothes.  The clothes are from Newborn all the way to 18 months and they are all different seasons.  A friend of mine from years ago advertised them on a facebook yardsale site for $20.  I was quick to respond and so happy to know they came from her.  I knew these clothes were clean and she even organized them based on size....my kinda girl!!!  

 

There are so many more outfits and pacifiers and shoes and headbands and more that have been added to this pile since I got these bins.  I am trying to buy things for all sizes and preferably stay at 6 months and up.  I have been thinking about getting cloth diapers but I think that would probably be best to wait until the baby comes.  I really want to try cloth diapers and have been doing lots of research with my cloth diaper genius of a sister and I have to say....they have some amazingly cute cloth diapers out there!!!  I wondered if I should be stocking up on disposable diapers but I don't want to buy them and then they are the wrong size and I won't ever need to use them or they sit in the closet for a year while a baby has to grow into them.  I figured I can start stock piling wipes since I know they will get plenty of use.  I am also researching car seats online and am thinking I will get a convertible one so I don't have to have more than one car seat.  Then I wonder if maybe I should get an infant car seat for visits and the convenience of being able to carry baby in the car seat.....decisions, decisions!!!  

I found the cutest stroller on Craigslist for $20 and was going to meet the lady but never got a call from her.  She emailed me to tell me they had gotten really sick and I told her no worries just to let me know when they were feeling better and I would get the stroller then.  I never heard back from her and I sent her an email about a week later asking if she was still interested in selling the stroller but got no response.  Stinks because I had found a stroller/car seat combo for $50 that was pink and girly and cute but I didn't want to get that one if I could get the first one since I was undecided with the car seat.

Wow...that was a lot of writing!!!  Imagine how much I talk in real life!!!  My family and friends are so good to me for listening to these ramblings all the time ;)  

Monday, January 27, 2014

Reaction from those around me

The reaction that I have received from the people around me have been positive for the most part.  My family has always known that I want to do this and they were extra supportive....they even surprised me with how much they agreed that this was what I should be doing.  Don't get me wrong, they have named their biggest concerns, mostly about the fear of my heart being broken having to say good bye to a child I have bonded with, but for the most part they have been cheering me on and asking excitedly about how my PRIDE training is going and what goes on in each class.

One person I know, asked me if I was aware of how much work this was going to be and told me that I can't return a child just because things get hard.....hmmmmm.....never knew that!?!?!  This was probably the most negative I have heard from anyone.

My mamma and sisters are so excited and bless their hearts, they sit and listen to me babble on and on about the excitement I am feeling and they are always excited to see the new things I am making for the baby or buying for the baby (there is a WHOLE post on that lol).

This week I will be completing my PRIDE training as well as CPI training (I think that's what it's called...will find out Wednesday for sure).  We have had some snow in this area, which we are not used to or prepared for and that caused class to be cancelled last week and we are due to get more snow tomorrow which will most likely cause class to be cancelled tomorrow night as well.  I really like my instructor and have gotten really close to her and the other future foster parents.  Out of the people that started, there is only a few people that have dropped the classes and we actually added four more people after the first nights orientation.  We have three women who were foster parents in the past, two whom have adopted a few children in the past, all teenagers.  There are people from all walks of life in there but I have learned that they are all very sweet and really passionate about becoming foster parents.

The application and paperwork needed to become a foster parent was a little bit overwhelming at first.  I finished the application before starting the PRIDE classes and I was able to finish all the rest of my paperwork within the first week.  I had to get a copy of my driving record, copy of my inspection for my car, auto insurance ID card, rental insurance, registration for my car, physicals for myself and each of the boys, and fingerprinting for me.  When I saw that list, I became a little bit overwhelmed since I have school full time and I have classes at night, I didn't know how I was going to be able to get it all done.  I went on a Wednesday when I didn't have class and got everything done for my car since I had to re register the car anyway and then I got my fingerprints done the same day.  The following Friday I went to get a physical for the boys and I and was able to hand in my completed application when I got to class that night (first one in the class to finish and turn in my application).

Now I am just waiting for one of the ladies to call me to set up the home study...hopefully it will be this week but because of the snow tomorrow, it will probably be pushed back till next week.  I spoke to my instructor tonight and asked her if any of the people that went through the PRIDE training last month were licensed yet and she said that there were actually some that had already gotten their license!!!  That gives me some hope and I hope it goes smoothly for me as well and I can get the ball rolling and get this license soon.

How long did it take you to get your license?

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

First night of PRIDE Training

Last night was my first night of PRIDE training.  I wasn't really sure what to expect when it came to the training but then I realized that it is really slow paced.  I am a full time college student and am used to teachers talking fast and covering a lot of material in a three hour period but I kind of felt like the three -hours dragged a little bit.  Maybe it also has to do with the fact that I am excited to get this started and really get in the swing of things and that was only night one.

We learned what PRIDE means (I will spare you the details of all of that) and then they taught us what it means to be a foster parent and what it means to be an adoptive parent.  They showed us a video from the 1980's that was informative (if you are a foster parent in the 80's lol).  The video can definitely be updated but it proved its point and that was all that mattered.

The instructor did mention one thing that I want to shout from the roof tops to allow everyone to know this information....

Foster parents can get a voucher when buying a new home or when moving to cover expenses.

The instructor said that is something that is known by few and used by fewer people but it is something that she wanted all of us to know so we could utilize this in the future if we buy a house or move to make space for our foster children.  Pass this information on and use it if you need it!!!

I was really excited to learn yesterday that they are going to be doing my first home study next week.  The instructor said that they are starting the background checks right away and want to get the ball rolling as fast as possible....they sound as if they are speaking my language!!!

Night two tonight and then I have tomorrow night off.  I am so excited to go tonight and see what else we are going to learn!

One interesting fact, there was 2/3 of the class missing from the orientation.  The instructor said that they are going to be taking the PRIDE classes during the day and I hope so...that is a lot of people to lose!!!

Have a great Tuesday....it is rainy and dreary here but I am not letting that ruin my day :)

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Foster Parent Orientation

Friday night was my first night of classes for foster parenting. We met at 6 pm and I had no idea what to expect once I got there.  What I realized within moments of arriving is that this agency is the friendliest bunch of people I could have ever hoped to meet.  They were so warm and welcoming which made being there alone even easier.  I was the first person to arrive and I got to talk to three of the women individually and was able to ask some questions and get some great insight of what I was getting myself into.

There are two owners of the agency and they are both very involved and were both so perky and upbeat.  I am a people person and am very loud and outgoing, to meet similar people is always a good thing.  There were about five speakers and they introduced the company and told us about themselves and what brought them into this line of work.  The thing that impressed me was the amount of time they had spent with this agency, they had all been there for a long time and some for as long as the agency had been open.

The people in the class surprised me a little bit.  In that regard, I had no idea what to expect.  There were people there from all different places in life and of all ages.  I think I was one of the youngest ones there but I was surprised to learn that I was definitely not the only single one there.  There was a group of women in the back that were all single and had kids who were older and leaving the home soon and there was one who even had three boys and was a full time student, like I am.

There was one woman there who is a foster parent for the city and she is thinking about switching to the agency.  I hope she is there on Monday because I would really like to pick her brain a little bit and find out what she prefers and why she is thinking about going to the agency.  I wish I would have stuck around and talked to her yesterday but I was kind of nervous and didn't know how to act when they said we were done for the night and could go home....should I stay and mingle or should I just go?  So, I just went home (well not home, to Target to go dream about the baby stuff that I will soon have all over my home).

One of the things that was mentioned in the orientation that I would like to talk to someone more about is, they mentioned that the state gets more babies and the agency gets older children.  The woman mentioned that even though one may want a baby, we have to be open to the idea of getting a 12-13 year old.  I am not in the position to take in a child older than an infant because I have nowhere to put that child in my apartment.  I was under the impression that I can pick and choose the age and gender of the children I want to foster and I need to make sure that is accurate.

Also, if the agency does not get a lot of foster children who are young infants, then I think I would prefer to go with the state since that is the age range I am wanting to foster.  I wonder if the agency will allow me to complete my PRIDE classes there with them if I don't plan on staying with them?  Maybe I shouldn't mention that I am not sure if I will stay with them just in case they wouldn't allow me to continue then?  Maybe that is just being dishonest!!!

Either way, I guess all of this will become more clear in the next three weeks as I continue my classes and am on my way to becoming a foster parent.

By the way.....

I have been sewing like a maniac and am loving all the pink that is entering my home in anticipation of a little pink bundle of joy.  I have gotten a crib (great price off of a facebook site in my area), some clothes, I made three crib sheets and a blanket, as well as some baby shoes and then I have had some offers from people I know that they are willing to lend me baby stuff if needed (it will definitely be needed!!!).