kid’s room

Foster Licensing Progress! Plus Everything Else…

I wrote this in May and never hit post for some reason. Since then, I totally dropped off the blog grid. In the last 3+ months,  a lot has happened. The most important thing (to me) is that I applied for and was accepted into the Master of Public Administration program at Florida International University! This is a highly competitive program with only 25 applicants each year. To say I am over the moon excited in an understatement.

There has been more, but if I write it all in 1 post then it could easily be 3 more months without a post. Along the MPA lines, I need to write more. This will become clearer as I post more about current events in future posts.

Other notable things that happened…

  • I got a NEW CAR in April! She is a Hyundai Elantra in a glittery dark blue (which works for both my Doctor Who obsession and Gator blue) that I’ve named Eva which is short for Evangeline Lily.
  • We went to Megacon for the 5th year and it was as amazing as ever. While we were there, I got a new tattoo (#10) which is a TARDIS with text inside that reads “We’re all stories in the end. Just make it a good one.”

  • I also got tattoo #9 3 weeks before that – the outline of a lotus flower
  • April 23rd was the 1 year anniversary since we received our home study
  • We spent a week in West Virgina 98% off the grid – no wifi! 🙁 -visiting Husband’s family. Bonfires, house hunting, bbq, and lots of friends and family time. We did, in fact, look at 3 houses to buy. However, unless we get truly amazing jobs, we aren’t moving there.

So, in May we had our 1st foster home visit. And rather than rewrite the following to bring current…


Last Tuesday, I took the day off work as we were finally able to schedule the home visit with Z for the mid-afternoon. It worked out perfectly. We had just finished lunch when she arrived after we had spent the morning doing some last minute tidying up.

The visit lasted about 90 minutes during which we went over the rather extensive packet of papers, did the walkaround tour of our house, the fire inspection, health inspection, then she took pictures. The outcome is that we were left with a list of 15 items to purchase or fill out/complete. Since then, I have done all of them including traipsing all over the place looking for the right fire extinguisher – 2A10BC.

We’ve also decided against getting licensed for 2 for the time being, so no bunk beds for us! The kid’s bedroom is huge with a full wall closet and private bathroom. If we ever decided that 1 child is easy peasy and we want a 2nd, we will revisit the bed situation.
Affidavits (2)
References (3)
Husband’s auto insurance card
Fire extinguisher
Fridge thermometer
His medical records
My medical records
My employment verification (2)
Vaccination records (2)

In 100% completely new news, I have made a crazy life decision and decided to get a second Master’s degree, this time in Public Administration. Yes, I might be crazy. In fact, I’m fairly sure that I am crazy since it will begin this August providing I am accepted into the program. It is an online program through FIU which is local to us so I can attend all the networking socials and whatnot. I will be able to take 1-4 classes each semester. With my first Master’s, I took 2 classes and worked full time. I’m actually super excited about it even if I think I’m crazy for taking it on at this point in my life.

Let’s recap, shall we?
Grad school – starting in 5 weeks
2 part-time jobs (oh yeah, I’m back to that…) with 90 minute one way commute
Foster license
Pursuing adoption
Everything else I do in my life on a daily basis


Just Passing Time…

One year and one week ago, we made the decision to adopt from foster care. As much as I wish everything had gone according to [our] plan and we’d had a child in our home by Christmas, that didn’t happen. We’re still waiting for the approval.

During the year, we have cleaned out our 2nd bedroom/ office and furnished it completely for our Fletchling. We got rid of a lot of clutter. We moved husband’s huge desk into our bedroom leaving the 2nd bedroom useless for 8 months. OK not entirely useless, the cat lives in there. I installed shelving to keep the cleaners and chemicals far out of a child’s (and almost my) reach. We bought new couches and they’re almost totally paid off. We made a lot of mental changes to adapting to being a family of 3. We discussed lowering our age range. I have attended countless adoption and foster support meetings and conferences and made invaluable friendships of other parents going through the same thing we’re dealing with and more. We made several other changes, but we still have a long way to go.

I am still hoping that we’ll get our results and approval this week, but I’m not holding my breath.

Also, I’ve been working on a pretty comprehensive Timeline.

I might’ve also become addicted to doing my nails. Being a thumb sucker for 5+ years then a nail biter for 30+ years, my nails were always crappy and ragged bc I bit them. Keeping polish on them has actually made me stop chewing on them! I joined the Julep Maven program and got my first box for FREE. Clicking that link or the icon in the sidebar – and using the code FREEBOX – will get you a free box as well. No, I’m not being compensated for this post (or any for that matter) to talk about them. I’ve also been using Sally Hansen, Rimmel and Wet N Wild polishes. I just happen to like the Julep ones the best.


Next Step…

I was informed yesterday by the psychologist that Steve’s evaluation will be sent to our agency today.


This was the only thing in the way of getting before the Review Board. Once it’s turned in, they will schedule a date for us to present our case for why we want to adopt. At least I’m guessing that’s what they’ll ask. I really don’t know.

After going before the ARB, we should be approved for adoption. There will be nothing else in our way… I *think* but honestly who knows as things have a way of popping up after we’re told we’re finished.

I understand that the actual matching process is a PITA, but it will all be worth it in the end. We will be matched to a child, not a child to us. Meaning, whichever of the 6 agencies has a child within our parameters will review our home study to see if we fit into the kind of parents and family that would be best.

We’ve had #Fletchling’s bedroom furnished and ready for occupancy since October. October! And have not been able to use half of our apartment since then. Yes, that is, in fact, 5 months. This weekend we decided to empty out our storage unit and bring everything back home to either keep, donate or trash. It’s going to go right back into this huge empty bedroom for us to work on until we’re at the sleepover stage with the hypothetical child.

We decided to adopt April 2013. Tomorrow this process has taken an entire year and we’re still awaiting a completed home study.


Short Update


Things are better than the last adoption post. I was overreacting and am well aware. We ended up meeting with our ACW* last Saturday and went over a few more questions. She was at the house for just shy of 2 hours which included walking around the house and seeing all the changes we’ve made. We’ve fully furnished Stormie‘s bedroom and moved Steve’s desk into our bedroom. Thank goodness the rooms are so large bc otherwise, all this furniture wouldn’t fit.

At the foot of the bed are 2 3-shelf bookshelves that he can use as a side table from the bed itself. They fit perfectly under the curve of the footboard.

I hung a shelf in the laundry room for the chemicals and cleaners.

We are going back in today for more questions. Honestly, I don’t know why they’re not all done at once like a couple from our PRIDE training, but c’est la vie. Maybe she’s required to see us a certain number of times. Whatever the case, I’m not sure.

* She made sure we realized that she is not our case worker and merely the person performing our home study. Once she finishes, we won’t be interacting with her again unless she happens to be the CW for our matched child.


Furniture and Frustrations Galore

Not much is happening on our end..

The new furniture was delivered and it is awesome! I finally feel like we live in a grown ups home. The rug and couches make everything look so much better. The dresser is just amazing and so pretty that even if this adoption doesn’t happen*, we’re moving it into our bedroom. We’ve removed all the cartoon, superhero and Doctor Who artwork from all the walls and are going to hang it in the kids room. Yeah that sucked. I was so used to seeing the Andy Warhol-esque Darth Vader, psychedelic 4th Doctor, the Avengers arm wrestling and tribute to Jim Henson art in the bedroom. (What do you mean we have weird taste in art?? lol) Not to mention all the other art in the living room and kitchen.

Going along with the grown up theme, we took down everything and need to re-frame them all with black frames. Black couch, black frames, yellow walls (not our choice), and a multi-colored rug to tie everything together.

Steve has to re-do his fingerprints for some unknown-to-us reason so he’s going in Friday for that and to meet with our ACW. She wanted me to come down as well but I’m running a 600+ person event Friday at work so that’s not happening. Besides, she’s coming to our house on Saturday for home visit #2.

No, no she’s not. She just emailed to cancel.

I feel like a rock that was rolling along so nicely and gathering momentum that just smashed into a wall with a gap slightly smaller than the width of the rock. Like we have to fight to push through to get this done. Just letting the process work seems to not be working for us. In fact, it is frustrating both of us and normally Steve is pretty unflappable. He’s my rock and even he’s having issues with this whole process.

I know in the end we will have a child and be parents, but… when?

We set our 2nd home visit appointment nearly 3 weeks ago and she just said she had to reschedule due to “an unexpected conflict.” I’m sorry, but that’s not really our problem, is it? If I had a personal issue but had a work thing that was super important, I would have to alter my personal issue or find coverage for the work or personal thing. In fact, I had to email my boss to see if I could leave work early next Tuesday to go deal with this stuff.

This just makes me feel like she’s talking down to us: “Please remember even if the interviews are done in my office, that doesn’t replace that fact that I still need to do a walk thru in your apartment.” Am I over-reacting? Probably. It’s OK, I know this whole process is making me freak out over every little thing.

I really hope my next post has good news in it!

* …anytime soon. We’re getting pretty frustrated with the process, but not nearly as much as my friends M&E in Orlando!


Furniture, Check!

My child has furniture!

We made the decision to use the nice sleigh bed frame in our storage unit for him/her so we just need to clean and set it up and buy a queen mattress.

Last night we went to RoomsToGo to a new couch and area rug for the family room and a dresser to match the bed frame for our child.

There are already 2, 3-shelf bookshelves in the room and we’re moving the couch from the living room into the bedroom for a reading area or whatever s/he wants it to be set up as.

This weekend we’re cleaning out the rest of the office including moving Steve’s desk into our bedroom to make it over as a bedroom. I will probably spend a lot of time in there just reveling in the fact that a little human will be living there soon.


Fingerprinting! And other good news..

This afternoon we are venturing to downtown Miami to get our fingerprinting done. For some odd reason – I’m sure it’s been explained but still – we have to go to our agency main office in order to have this done. So yay! We also get to finally meet our case worker as up to this point all our contact has been over the phone and via email.

I’m totally hoping we see our awesome teachers while we’re there! In fact, I emailed them last night to give them the heads up that we’re going to be there and to let them know that on Saturday…

We have our first Home Visit!! Um, with our Adoption Case Worker (ACW) as opposed to the one during our PRIDE training.

Yep, Saturday is our first home visit and she’ll be asking us eleventy billion questions from the Life Stories we turned in. When I mentioned them, she said she preferred to do it this way and then incorporate the written outlines later. Uh, OK. Glad we took the time to write them then.

We have to compile a bunch of documents, not limited to:

  • Our marriage license
  • Current lease
  • Paystubs to show we’re gainfully employed
  • Tax returns for the last few years
  • Bank statements for all our accounts- 3 months worth
  • Lola and Phoenix vaccine records
  • Steve’s divorce decree – the NC court website isn’t very user friendly 🙁
  • A voided check for the monthly stipend

This will be the first of 2-3 visits and will last about 2 hours. She said it is more of an informal meeting and to walk through our house. We don’t need to have everything child-proofed, have the office converted, or all the medication and chemicals locked up. It’s going to give us time to ask her all the questions we both have since up until now, we’ve not been able to ask an adoption person these questions. Well, not exactly. The awesome folks at Our Kids are crazy knowledgeable and we couldn’t have made it this far without their help.

By her next visit in a few weeks, we should have the bedroom furnished with “whatever [we] would buy as parents to furnish [my] child’s bedroom.”