Sunday, June 24, 2012


I am a girl. Therefore, my feelings and emotions tend to run my life.....

Anyone with me?

My husband, the dear soul, has learned to roll with it. He is well aware that I get on certain "kicks" and that if he just nods and listens, the kick will fade and I'll be on to something new. My "kicks" as of late have been running, sewing some new bedding, a book I've been reading (he is so sweet to let me read parts of it to him), a get the idea....

However, sometimes my feelings are not productive. I get in a funk with parenting, I get negative about relationships, I get tired of church (did I just say that out loud?). Then, my feelings overtake the calling that God has placed on my life to bring glory to Him in all circumstances. I get lax with infusing Scripture into our home, I get complacent in friendships, and I lose the urgency to give 100% into preparing for Sunday School. 

I read a quote from John Piper on an adoptive mother's blog today:

My feelings are not God. God is God. My feelings do not define truth. God’s word defines truth. My feelings are echoes and responses to what my mind perceives. And sometimes – many times – my feelings are out of sync with the truth. When that happens – and it happens every day in some measure – I try not to bend the truth to justify my imperfect feelings, but rather, I plead with God: Purify my perceptions of your truth and transform my feelings so that they are in sync with the truth.
― John Piper

So, I guess I lose the excuse that "I just don't feel like it" ???

Dadgumit :)

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Tee-Ball 2012

 The 2012 Tee-Ball season is coming to a close! Jack has really learned a lot about the wonderful game of baseball this year, and it has been so much fun watching him. Another fun part of Tee-Ball this year is that Jack and Noah are on a team together. It has been great being able to hang out with Clay and Robin during all of those games! The boys have had a blast together!

Really and truly...they just play for the snacks:)

Sydney and Luke...I will choose to remember that they sat just like this at every game. Yeah right!!

On deck!

Sydney is the boys' #1 Fan!!

Dee came for a game!

Running for first base!

Friday, June 1, 2012

How to Help a Foster/Adoptive Family

Hey guys!

When we have had foster care placements, I was often asked "How can I help? What do you need?" I always felt uncomfortable answering that question while I was in the middle of a placement, mainly because I'm prideful and have a hard time asking for help :)  We are in the very (very) beginning stages of forming a foster/adoptive support group in CenLa ... much more on that later....  and so I thought I would write out some ideas on how to help families that are "in the trenches." Maybe you know a family that could benefit from one of these ideas:

1. Bring them food. They are hungry, their kids are hungry, and they are so stressed out that they REALLY don't want to cook. But, those kids (especially the foster child who is probably already malnourished) needs some home cookin'. Another idea along with this: Cook a meal that the parents will enjoy, but also cook something that KIDS will enjoy. It's not very helpful if the meal is not kid-friendly :)

2. Get the kids out of the house and allow the parents to clean up. That momma/daddy would probably feel A LOT better if their house was clean. There's something to be said for clean floors and toilets. Heck, I could conquer the world if my bathtub was clean! Take all the kids to the park for two hours, whatever, just get them outta there.

3. When the family goes to a function, like a birthday party/church event/family get-together, take responsibility for that foster/adoptive child at the event. Say "Hey, Amanda, I'll take responsibility for ______ for the next two hours. I'll fix her plate, take her to the restroom, help her resolve conflicts, and keep an eye on her while she plays. You sit down and enjoy yourself while you're here and don't worry about _______." Be intentional about it. It is such a relief to know that someone else has taken full responsibility for that child for at least a little while.

4. Bring the momma her favorite drink/snack during naptime. For stay-at-home moms with young children, naptime is her only time by herself...and those two or three hours (if they are lucky) is precious. Swing through Sonic and surprise her, then stay for a few minutes and hang out...but don't take up her whole naptime :)

5. Call and ask the parents to schedule a date, then keep their kids for a few hours. It's so hard to afford a babysitter and a date, especially if you have three or more children. And most teenagers are not ready to handle the tantrums/issues of a foster child....the parents would really feel more comfortable with an adult around. While you are keeping the kids, feed them supper and bathe them. This will truly give the parents a night off.

6. If you are able, provide overnight respite care. With both of our placements, we had a couple of weekends away. I really don't think we could have made it without those mornings to sleep in, spend time in the Word, and really get rejuvenated. We have provided respite care twice, and it is such a blessing to know that you are giving that family a break!!

7. Appreciate the daddy. Oftentimes the foster father is overlooked. Yes, most of the work lies with the mother, but I would say most of the stress lies with the daddy. He is trying to lead a family that is (usually) falling apart. He is trying to be a father to biological kids AND teaching a child that has never had a father how to trust. He is also trying to care for his wife, who is exhausted and overwhelmed. Take him out to lunch, write him a card, encourage him, pray WITH him, let him know he is not alone.

8. Help with homework. If you can provide some free tutoring, you would be priceless. The heavens would open up and angels would sing. Get the picture? Foster children (typically) are not stellar students. Can you blame them? They've been a little stressed out with grown-up issues :) And 99.9% of foster families really don't have the money to pay tutors, or the time to bring a child to tutoring. Pick up the child, bring them to your house/library/park/whatever, feed them a snack, help them with homework, and bring them back home. I'm telling you, you will be a hero.

9. Invite them over for supper. They are in need of some adult interaction. And while they are there, if the foster child doesn't something embarrassing, like licking food off the floor, tearing up toys, pitching a huge fit over nothing, picks through the trash, etc. etc. etc. (these are just things I've dealt with - haha!!) please don't raise your eyebrows or act surprised or appalled. Just think of how much of a break you are giving that family!

10. Pray for them. All the time. Pray for that child, and the biological kids, too. Call them up and pray over the phone. Write out a prayer and stick it in their mailbox. Send a text saying you prayed for them today. Ask for specific prayer needs, and then PRAY FOR THEM. This really is the most important thing.

I hope this is helpful for you as you try to minister to foster/adoptive families. It truly is a beautiful thing when a community of like families rally around each other for the kingdom of Christ. For His glory, and His fame, and His redemption in the lives of broken children and broken families.

And you can be a part of that.

Just go to Sonic :)