May 8, 2024

Michigan grabs the leader-board as the first state to provide Kinship caregivers the same level of assistance and licensing requirements that are given to foster care providers. Why is this important? Up until now, Kinship caregivers bring children into their families but do not receive the assistance granted to licensed foster care families, even though they are opening their home in the same way. Understanding Kinship Care Kinship care refers to the care of children by relatives (Kin) or close... Read more

April 24, 2024

People often wonder if adoptive moms really feel that bond with children who did not grow in their womb. There is that undeniably special joy and bond that is formed as a little one is growing inside their mother. After birth, there’s an elation of guessing who the little one looks like – Mama’s eyes, Daddy’s ears, Grandma’s smile, Grandpa’s monobrow. But how do adoptive parents handle this apparent missing piece of the very important growing up puzzle? Can they... Read more

April 17, 2024

Today was a day to celebrate a huge accomplishment and I fully expected to be raising a glass over a succulent steak dinner, baked potatoes and perfectly grilled onions.  Instead, I was sitting on the living room floor cleaning up dog pee while my boys ran right by the load of laundry that sat unfolded on the hearth. My youngest yelled from the bedroom that he couldn’t find any pajamas to wear.  ‘Maybe they’re in that clean laundry basket you... Read more

April 9, 2024

Adoption day was wonderful and we stepped into our new life, believing we’d be a happy, settled family. The gavel dropped, the new name was granted, yet walking out the door, the tantrum started. Trauma had a different type of family dynamic in mind for us. As we welcomed family from afar, planned adoption parties and rented the bounce houses, we had no clue that trauma, and behaviors that evolved from it, would remain a part of our family life... Read more

April 2, 2024

Teenagers are the group most often overlooked when the call goes out that a foster home is needed. A fear of their ‘behaviors’ and how they will affect families, or the notion that they will be jaded and angry kids is what keeps many foster families away from welcoming an older child. Yet the cost of allowing youth to bounce through the system, then age out of foster care, is high. From both a human and a financial standpoint. Youth... Read more

February 9, 2024

                          A recent group of children adopted from foster care were asked the following question: ‘What is the worst thing about being adopted [from foster care]’? People often tell me that I’m lucky to be adopted by this family. Adoption isn’t lucky as trauma always precedes adoption from foster care. So many rejoice at the adoption of kiddos who have survived early childhood trauma and for whom the... Read more

February 2, 2024

Credit cards suck the financial life out of Americans today. But debit cards are the perfect teacher for our teens to learn about wise spending. Last week I shared how our family handled two foundational areas that we developed early on in our kids: financial savvy and a strong work ethic. You can read it here. That post, written when my oldest was 7, has undergone 6 years of testing and tweaking. Chores and Finances When our boys were still... Read more

January 26, 2024

                        Lists upon lists. In life we write lists for many things. To do lists Laundry lists Honey Do lists Packing lists But do we ever take time to write a Parenting List?   In life we set goals for many things. When to start a career What age you hope to marry The kind of parent you want to be The tasks you want to finish today But do... Read more

January 19, 2024

A fish doesn’t consume as much water as a child trying to delay bedtime, am I right?  I’ve never been so inundated with hugs and casual ‘I love yous’ as I am when lights go out.  A recounting of my son’s day is done with such flair just as I’m closing the door.  My writings talk a lot about the importance of structure and schedule, and bedtime is no different. Here’s a few ideas that drove the point home to... Read more

January 10, 2024

Motherhood often seems like an insurmountable challenge. Alarm shrills and we are waking up bleary eyed, wondering how to muster the energy to face the kids.  Halfway down the hall to wake the boys yesterday I realized I was only half dressed.  Who forgets to put on pants?  Tired moms who give it all they’ve got each day. Tired moms dangling from the end of a rapidly fraying rope. Tired moms wondering when they last felt the glorious steam of... Read more

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