1-year plan

Live on Kickstarter #sheep2skein

No, this isn’t adoption related, but it’s still super exciting! I posted my very first Kickstarter campaign to raise the money to start my knitting business.

And I am beyond excited about it.

I’ve limited all the handknit rewards as I would love love love to get them posted to all the backers by the first week in December for gifts (even gifts to yourself!)

Even if you can’t or don’t want to support it, can you please spread the word?

Sheep2Skein Yarn Shop is Finally Opening. For Real!

Our shorturl for sharing is tiny.cc/sheep2skein

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Orientation… and Books

I can finally count the number of days until our orientation on my fingers. And not use any twice!

10 glorious days until this adoption process becomes a reality.

Every time I tell someone at work that we’re adopting, they’re so happy and excited for us. It’s amazing to see/ hear the different responses and reactions that I’m getting. Also, I love hearing the “I’m adopted” stories from friends. It’s so heartwarming to know that we aren’t alone in this journey.

I was in a different Barnes & Noble tonight buying some awesome books for our 11year old cousin and asked the sales folks where the adoption books were. They had three. I asked where the grandparents books were. They had one. Ugh. Really? I was considering getting a book and giving it to my parents at their anniversary dinner – 42! – as an opening to discuss our adoption plans. However, the lack of books postponed it yet again. Maybe I’m just not looking forward to hearing that we should just “have our own babies” again. Even if I could get pregnant, we would still be adopting.

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We’re Official(ly signed up)!

FRC Orientation Invite

(If you’re so inclined to read it, clicking makes it much larger)

This arrived sometime in the last week while we were out of town.

It’s our official invitation to the orientation for foster or adoptive parents.

Thank Ood that it arrived. Now I can cancel the original one on the 20th with the agency that didn’t want to work with us. At. All.

(That’s right, I said “Thank Ood” bc I’m a Doctor Who geek.)

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We have class! For adoption, that is…

Leave it to me to be all gung ho about starting the adoption blog then no post for 2 weeks. What on earth happened?

The Miami-Dade foster agencies happened. I scoured their websites and called and emailed all 5 agencies. I tried to find someone that would speak to me. Tried to find an agency that was willing to register us for their PRIDE classes. My emails were rejected, sent out of office notifications, and forwarded on to others. My voicemails went unreturned.

Nothing. Well, nothing substantial.

So I gave up. Ok, we can’t start classes until October with CHS? Fine. I tried everything including guilt to get them to let us into the sooner classes since their staff screwed up. Nothing except attitude.

I posted to the Our Kids Facebook page asking questions and got a phone number of a gentleman to call. He was not only helpful, but gave me additional names. But still no classes.

I was getting more and more frustrated with the system down here. After all, we have been actively trying to get information on adopting for 6 weeks. My friend in Orlando contacted an agency after us and was given so much information so quickly that I felt even more disenchanted by the system. (She and her husband have their orientation next week- yay!)

frclogoFinally… FINALLY… on Tuesday I got an email from FRC with attachments and a note saying their orientation is June 29th and the classes begin in July. And could we please fill out the forms and get them back to her. I had literally just been ranting to Steve about the horrible system in place and no one wanting to help us adopt and get some kids out of the system. Do they not want kids in safe and permanent homes? What is going on here??

I took Lola outside, popped open my Gmail app and starting freaking out. Right there was an email, sent after hours, from a woman at FRC with the blessed information. I scanned through the attachments and raced back inside to tell him that we finally had good news.

The next day I filled out the paperwork and him to sign it. Yesterday I faxed it back to her. She replied stating that their Orientation class is June 29th and the 10-week PRIDE classes begin on July 16th from 6-9pm. That means they end the day after my birthday. BEST BIRTHDAY EVER!

Referring to my post on the steps to adoption, we should be doing our first Home Visit during the week of August 4th. The second would be in mid-September. We feasibly could have a child (children) in our home by Christmas. That prospect makes me want to rush out and start Christmas shopping!

But also, it means we need to seriously ramp up the apartment hunting and cleaning out the guest bedroom.

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Mother’s Day and the Timeline to Adoption

I posted this on Facebook yesterday:

Next year I will be celebrating Mother’s Day with my own child. *shivers*

To which, amongst others, received this comment:

How quickly will you guys have your little one?

To which I responded and also thought.. what a great blog post!

This is the timeline that we’re working with at the moment:

  • Our orientation class is June 20th.
  • From there, we will sign up for our 10 weeks of PRIDE classes (PDF link) which should end right around my birthday in August/September.
  • After that, we will have our home study done – I was told it had to be completed within 90 days of completion of our classes – so by the end of November.
  • While that home study is being completed, we will be looking at all the photolistings of children.
  • Once our home study is approved for adoption, we will select children we want more information about based on their limited online profiles and our social worker will reach out to their social worker and see if we’re a match. If we are, we will get their file and arrange to meet him/her/them.
  • The timeframe from here on is a little shaky as we really don’t know how long this can take.
  • After we spend time with him/her/them, we will have a few sleepovers, then they will move in.
  • If all goes well, 6 months later, we will finalize the adoption in court and apply for new birth certificates.

There are hundred of thousands of children in US foster care. Roughly 40% of them are legally free and available for adoption. The term “special needs” refers to children due to specific factors or conditions such as being over 8, having a particular racial or ethnic background, being part of a sibling group needing to be placed together, medical conditions, and physical, mental, or emotional handicaps.

Now, why do I keep saying “him/her/them” – we have not fully decided boy or girl or one of each. If we can move into a 3-4 bedroom home, we can open our home and lives up to more children. 2 is our max sibling group size at the moment. I do still want a boy and a girl, but we’ve been told that they need their own rooms. So, master, boy room, girl room, office = 4 bedrooms. Unless we can find a super huge master bedroom or a closet-less den to use for an office, we can go to a 3 bedroom.

Anyone know of 3-4 bedroom 2-3 bathroom homes in the Palmetto Bay/ Cutler Bay, West Kendall area for under $1,400 a month? Our current lease is up in August so we’re on the hunt for new digs!

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The Last Two Weeks

In the last 2 weeks since deciding to move forward with the foster-adoption process, I have. . .

  • Been in touch several times with the adoption advocate at Our Kids of Miami-Dade County
  • Scheduled our Orientation class at which we will schedule our 10-weeks of PRIDE classes (PDF link)
  • Joined a gym to ensure I will be around for a very long time for my child(ren)
  • Committed to work on my personal problems
  • Had breakfast with Steve that turned into brunch as we sat for 3 hours talking to a realtor about buying a home, her connections for jobs at UM and FIU, our lives, her schedule, real estate classes and so much more
  • And subsequently, spent hours looking up homes between South Miami and Cutler Bay
  • Talked about the process and foster-adoption to loads of people
  • Discovered that my 20th high school reunion is next year – ugh!
  • Gathered a ton of information about my amazing friends on the kind of parents they are (or want to be) and began forming the picture in my mind about my parenting style
  • Got lost in Target in the children’s bedroom aisles – so much pink!
  • Met another couple for dinner that I can’t wait to hang out with a lot more
  • And. . . just submitted my information to take classes to become a CASA volunteer with the Guardian Ad Litem program

More to come! I’m sort of playing catch up and trying not to spew out so much information at once. I hope all my knowledge – and trust me, I learn more about foster-adoption every day – will be helpful for other folks as well. It will be interesting to see how many folks I’ve educated and that also adopt from foster care.  If you’re thinking about it, let me know, OK?

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Let’s Start at the Very Beginning

Well hello there!

This has been a big couple of weeks in the Fletcher home. Two weekends ago, we decided that, yes, it’s time to expand our family. With a human child. Or 2. (as opposed to another furbaby…)

As the first post in my newly revised blog into an Adoption Blog, I’m just going to post all the updates I made on my Facebook the past few weeks.

adopt1

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adopt2

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adopt3

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adopt4

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adopt5

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adopt6

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adopt7

So there you have it. The facebook updates. Coming up will be my [extremely long] elevator speech about the children, the process, and everything else.

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A Perfect Life

Having just spent the last 2 days at Wordcamp Miami, my passion is running super high for working for myself. Not to mention kicking butt. In my perfect life, RS Creative Solutions will run smoothly and earn us enough money for Steve to do law school and me to not have to work in corporate America.

In reality, I don’t have any consistent clients and don’t get paid for the bulk of the work I do… mostly bc I don’t ever bill for it. From now on, I need to set boundaries, create job scope/ specs, get down payments, have contracts signed all before I ever do a drop of design work.

I’ve been doing this long enough (15 years) that I can’t keep calling myself an amateur. I mean really, that doesn’t help with my design-esteem. Yeah, that’s like self-esteem but for my design work.

I found two somewhat mentors willing to help me with my business and was told that I really need to get to more events in the industry. I was also told our URL was too long. So I bought a shorter one: RS Creates

Now to implement my perfect life.

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12 Pounds of Fat

For lack of being able to find a picture of 12 pounds of fat, I give you this one of 1 and 5 pounds.

Image source
I have lost 2 of each of the above piles of fat… or 12 pounds!

Today marks the beginning of my 6th week of the Body By Vi 90 Day Challenge – or technically the 5th as I had to wait a week for my second shipment – and I have lost 12 pounds as of this morning.

During my in-between week, I ate horribly as we hadn’t gone grocery shopping in weeks and thought I gained back 3 of the pounds I lost. However, after my first full day back on the shakes, I was down 0.4 from the week prior. Steve says it’s water weight and I’m going to go with that to ease my mind. 😉

My intention when beginning Body By Vi was to keep track of all the meals I ate on here as a sign of accountability. Instead, I re-activated my MyFitnessPal account and started tracking in there. I also track my weight in there, but only the losses! I think putting the gains would detract from the pretty downward line.

When I get down to a reasonable number, I might post how big I got, but it still freaks me out that it got that high.

But for now, I will drink my spinach-vanilla-peanut butter breakfast shake (hey don’t knock it! It’s amazing and creamy!) and look forward to my strawberry-banana (with a whole banana and 6 strawberries) shake for lunch. And Chili’s grilled chicken sandwich and fries for dinner. And about a million glasses of water.

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Oh, Hello Fabulous New Adoption Information Site

I Support Adoption from Foster Care | BeccaBlogs.comimage source: AdoptUsKids Facebook page

Don’t you just love it when you find a new-to-you website chock full of information on a subject you are passionate about? Yeah, me too. Yesterday afternoon I clicked on a link from the AdoptUsKids facebook page entitled “Grandparents – How to Support Your Foster Parenting Child” and, after reading it, realized I was on a yet-unexplored site. And wow. Upon exploring, I found a huge wealth of info relating to not only adoption, but foster/adoption and foster care.

I love this stuff.

Sure, we don’t have a time frame yet for adoption, but that doesn’t stop my research. I love digging up all the information that I possibly can about a subject of interest. It helps me make extremely informed decisions.

Like last night, we went into Barnes & Noble and started playing with the Nook Color. When the sales person came up to us, I was able to rattle off all sorts of details from a couple hours of Kindle vs Nook comparative research. It was enough for her to say “wow, you should be doing my job!” So, yes, I am a researching nerd. 🙂

But anywho, here are some great articles on foster/adoption, but bear in mind that this is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg over at adoption.about.com
Adopt a Foster Child
How to Better Understand the Profiles of Waiting Children
How to Know When an Adoption Match Is Right for Your Family
How to Know When a Child Is Not a Good Adoption Match for Your Family

There are so many great articles all over this site and to try and list them all would be somewhat pointless. Yes, I only linked to a handful of foster/adoption articles as that is the route we are taking. Like I said, they have everything including international and domestic adoption of infants and older children. It all depends on what you are interested in doing for your family.

Now go forth and research. <3

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Living in the Now, With the Positive


I am going to try something new. Being positive about my life. Crazy, right? I need to make a change bc there is way too much negativity surrounding me. It is part of the reason why I haven’t been blogging. Honestly, I just don’t feel like I have anything to share.

To start the change, I began selling AVON (saving that for another post), bought a few self-help books (namely A Complaint Free World and a few by Deepak Chopra), and basically rearranged my mindset. Oh, and removing the negative people from my life as much as I can. That part is pretty difficult, but with minimal interaction, I have to make it work.

Anyone want to join me in turning our lives into better and more positive? I know there are a few of you that are struggling as well. It’s kinda like a diet, we can support each other and lift each other up.

Let me know!

Source: flickr.com via Becca on Pinterest

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No Dice… Moving On

Well, as I’m sure you’ve guessed by now due to the lack of ecstatic posts stating otherwise, I didn’t get the job in Gainesville.

However, being up there surrounded by so many amazing friends that were excited at the prospect of us moving back was a truly fantastic experience. It was pretty eye opening for both of us. Even the people that had never met hubby and only saw pictures on my FB/Twitter pages welcomed him.

It made us realize that we belonged somewhere else where we could be surrounded by friends – our chosen family – in order to be truly happy. So, while the Gainesville trip didn’t yield a new career, it did help us out immensely.

…The search continues…

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