Dear Grae,

You are eight months old now! You never cease to amaze me… every single day, you conquer a new task. It seems like yesterday you couldn’t hold your head up, and now you are doing the worm across the floor, figuring out how to get to me from across the room. You still haven’t mastered crawling, but you are so close it could happen ANY time.  You are definitely strong enough, you just can’t get those darn hands and knees to work together yet. You can even do PUSH UPS!

You are eating a little better, although if it were up to you, you would exclusively nurse. When we gently encourage solids, your favorites are organic rice puffs (aka Giant Rice Krispies), tomatoes, artichokes, fettucini, bread and corn.  NONE of which are pureed.  You will tolerate yogurt, but other foods that resemble baby food makes you gag. Maybe your a future foodie?

You have FOUR teeth now!  Two on top, two on bottom. We got you a Baltic Amber teething necklace, even though I was pretty skeptical of its so-called healing properties– and, as it turns out, it is amazing. Since I put it on you, your teething troubles have vanished. You haven’t objected once, no more fever, runny nose, or gum pain.  Talk about a live saver.

You are super ticklish and just laugh and laugh.  High fives have to be the coolest thing in the world and Grandma’s version of Pat-A-Cake is by far the most entertaining song that even provides enough distraction to make baby-groomin’ night bearable.  Swimming, baths, showers- all things involving water- are your favorite activities.

You are a Momma’s Boy through and through and have started crying when anyone else holds you or I leave your eyesight even for a minute.  As much as it makes my heart burst, its going to make going back to school in a couple weeks a little difficult.  Hopefully, you will have so much fun that it will be an easy transition.

I love you even more every single day, Baby G.


Broken Pucker

It is kind of a Mommy’s right to laugh at Baby’s funny faces when he tries new foods, right?  Well, even if I have a sick and twisted sense of humor, I had been looking forward to it for quite some time.  However, Grae has been eating solids for almost three months now, and I have yet to get a real good funny face.  So, I decided to turn up the volume and give my poor, unsuspecting baby a lemon to munch on. As I waited in giddy anticipation for a perfect pucker, he licked it, inspected it, then went right back to slurping and nibbling it as if it was candy, like he was just so grateful we finally gave him something with a little flavor!  WHAT?!!

I guess my dream of winning America’s Funniest Home Videos with the Puckered Lemon Baby Face video is kaput.

Hard Questions

Something I’m regularly asked is:  “How did you decide to become a foster parent?”   Some people are curious, some are interested in fostering themselves, and others just couldn’t fathom bringing children that were not born to them into their home.

The answer to this question is not cut and dry.  Like many foster parents, there were many reasons that encouraged us to embark on this wild journey, so many that it can’t be quickly explained in the middle of the cereal aisle at the grocery store.  I’m asked so frequently (and recently have been asked to formally speak to interested families through a foster agency) that I’ve decided it may be easier to write down my thoughts and refer people to this post.

Ultimately, the decision to foster and/or adopt children is usually a multi-step process, one that involves a lot of “back-and-forth” from all parties involved. That being said, here are three “tips” (for lack of a better word) we have learned through the experience.

1. It doesn’t have to be your partner’s idea. Yes, at the end of the day, you will need to be on the same page.  But, initially, it usually will be one person who shares this seemingly crazy idea, and that is OKAY.  I am a firm believer that the success of a marriage/partnership doesn’t come from shared passions.  Many times, an individual’s passion will eventually lead your partner to the same convictions.  Be open.  Share your heart.

2. Its not either/or. We had 8 foster children before we were expecting our first biological child and many people assumed that we were not able to conceive naturally and we were fostering in order to eventually adopt.  Fostering or adopting doesn’t have to be in lieu of having biological kids.  In fact, we welcomed our current foster son into our lives when our biological son was only two and a half months old.  You do not have to plan your entire family before signing up to adopt or foster.

3. Its not everyone’s dream. Its really hard not to question why everyone else isn’t doing something that you feel very strongly about.  Especially when it is something that is this important and in such dire need.  The truth is that, more often than not, people will tell you what a terrible mistake you are making.  Just be grateful that God has given you this story to live and enjoy every second.

If you are interested in becoming a foster parent and would like more information or have other questions, please let me know. 🙂 I’d be more than happy to help in anyway I can.