"I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him." 1 Samuel 1:27
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Thursday, November 21, 2013

National Adoption Day is Tomorrow!

Tomorrow is National Adoption Day, and we are so lucky and blessed to be adopting our baby girl tomorrow!!!  We can't believe the time is finally here!  It has been almost 2 years (minus a few weeks) since we brought her home from the hospital.  She is definitely worth the wait!  Foster adoption is a long and sometimes frustrating process (I've found out most of the time), but for these children to have a forever family, no amount of time is too long to make sure permanency occurs.  While a happy day for our family, my heart aches and breaks for those children who are still waiting for their forever home.  Especially the tweens and teens who sometimes wait much longer than the little ones.  Have YOU ever considered opening your heart and home to a waiting child?
Many Blessings to You wherever you may be in Your Journey,
The Queen Mama

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Finally, A Verdict!!

Finally, a verdict! Both parents signed their consent to adoption, meaning they voluntarily signed away their parental rights to their child.  The judge has signed the decree and changed the goal.  Our foster baby girl is finally FREE FOR ADOPTION!!!!!!  Praise God, Hallelujah! Thank you for all of your prayers and well wishes, sent to me and/or said in your heart!!!  Our journey is coming to a close.  A few more months til finalization.   The bio parents of this child that we have had since birth have told us they support us and are fine with their decision to consent to adoption.  I praise God for answered prayers not only for us and our beautiful girl, but for the bio parents that they are at peace with their decision and can move forward with their lives.  The bio mom has been clean for almost a year and bio dad is taking several classes in prison to improve his education and life.  I sincerely pray they succeed!!  I can't wait til I can tell all of you her adoption is finalized.  In the meantime, I pray for you on your journey, wherever that may be, and if you have any questions or need a good listener on your foster adoption journey, just email the Queen Mama at fosteradoptionmommy@gmail.com.  I'd love to chat!
Blessings,
The Queen Mama

Friday, June 14, 2013

Are You Following My Crazy Foster Adoption Ride?

My last post was about Bio Dad's termination hearing-still no ruling!  Now, an interesting twist-after signing his rights away, then rescinding, then going through with termination hearing~now he wants to sign his rights away again!  His lawyer filed a motion to stop the ruling on the termination hearing, and let him sign over his consent to adoption.  No one is sure how this is going to work-if it will work-what the judge will decide.  If they allow this, then does he still have 30 days from the time he signs them to appeal again?  How can he stop the termination hearing if it's already been presented, argued, and just waiting for the judge's signature????  The hearing for Bio Mom's consent signing is about a month away.  We will see if that happens amongst all this case chaos.  (as it has already been postponed once.)  Handing all the chaos over to the Lord and finding serenity in prayer!  Are you following along on my journey?  Click Join My Journey on the home page!
May You Be Blessed!
The Queen Mama

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Still No Termination Ruling!

Well, it's Memorial Day weekend and still no termination ruling for bio dad.  It's been about a month.  The caseworker is wondering the outcome as well so the case can move forward, and said she may contact the judge personally instead of waiting for the answer to come down through the paperwork trail.  On another interesting note, the bio mom's lawyer called me a few days ago wanting to know if I would agree to a post adoption contact agreement.  He hadn't even spoken with bio mom at all about it, but I know she wants visitation, so I told him NO to visitation (bio mom has no bond with baby-we brought her home directly from the hospital at birth, and bio mom has had very little visitation -by her own choice.  She is also a drug addict and a convicted criminal.)  I did, however, tell him we would consider letters and possibly pictures.  This becomes a court ordered agreement, enforceable by the courts. 
So, today I will focus on being thankful for the many veterans in my family (my husband, stepdad, brother-in-law uncle,), and remember the many vets in my family and this nation who have passed on (grandfather, husband's grandfather, and many more), who gave their time and sometimes lives for my freedoms in this country.  I will count all our blessings, and give my worry up to the Lord.
May you be blessed,
The Queen Mama

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Bio Dad's Termination Hearing No Ruling

Like I said before, nothing surprises me this second time around in a foster adoption case.  Bio Dad's termination hearing was held last week.  Bio Mom's hearing for her signing consent to adoption was supposed to be held the same day, but the judge decided to hold it off to a later date, because Bio Mom didn't show up. 
So, first things first...Bio Dad's mother a.k.a. Grandma showed up at the courthouse.  She came right up to me in the hallway and introduced herself.  I was very warm, nice, and gracious.  She told me she had filed a motion for grandparent visitation and was petitioning the court for custody.  I asked her if she realized we had had Sweet Pea since birth straight from the hospital.  Yes.  I asked her if she would like more pictures of her.  She said yes, started crying, and walked away.  Now, I do know that I would feel the same way about my grandchild.  That I would want her, but this Grandma has criminal and substance abuse problems of her own, not to mention enabling her almost 30 year old criminal substance abuser son.  (giving him a full crack-pipe for his 16th birthday, for instance.) 
During the hearing, with Bio Dad in his orange jumpsuit and handcuffed and shackled, with an armed sheriff standing directly behind him, and another standing at the side entrance, his lawyer whips out about 5 certificates for different programs Bio Dad has completed while incarcerated.  Sweet Pea's legal team was consistent with pointing out he had only ever seen her twice in her first 2 months of life, and has made no effort whatsoever to have any contact whether it be visitation, telephone, letters, cards, etc.  Bio Dad took the stand and said he felt that his daughter should be with him because he is her natural father, or with her natural grandmother.  He requested a visit with her that day, and judge said no.  She said she is very busy, wants to review the case, and will give us her decision in about 2 weeks.  TWO WEEKS!!!  This system is so hurry up and wait.  How everyone involved suffers for 2 weeks wondering the outcome.  Sweet Pea's lawyers say it is pretty cut and dried.  However, I won't rest easy til I get the final decision.
On a lighter note, one of the caseworkers dropped off Sweet Pea's Life Book the other day, and it is so sweet and special, and our adoption profile is complete.  The adoption caseworker said we are just waiting on a date, and everything's a go, so I feel pretty confident that they feel pretty confident. 
Please pray for this sweet baby girl that God entrusts her care to us, and for her bio parents that they may know God's love, and get their lives together so they may move forward and live productive, happy lives.
Blessings,
The Queen Mama

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Bio Dad's Termination Hearing Just Days Away~Nervous!!

The termination hearing is just days away.  Caseworker called me today to tell me that Dad will probably appeal if his rights are terminated.  It could be months longer...Caseworker, GAL, and Attorney feel the case is a no brainer.  I do too, however, as a pre-adoptive foster parent, you know crazy things can happen.  Rulings can be delayed, or given contrary to popular opinion.  I sit here looking at my Sweet Pea whom I brought home from the hospital, and the thought of her leaving our family makes my heart hurt and my stomach sick.  I am praying that God sees fit that she stay here with us.  As Bio Mom broke off her relationship with Bio Dad and signed her rights away, I think Dad is grasping to hold on to what he feels is his.  I know his mother, who is an alcoholic and convicted thief, is encouraging him to do so, even though he has not made any effort whatsoever since Sweet Pea was born to see her or communicate with her.  I know my family would do the same, so I do not hold ill will toward them.  I just pray that the judge rules as to what is best for this child, which is a safe, loving, stable, non-addictive, criminal-free home. 
Blessings to you as well, wherever you may be in your journey.
The Queen Mama

Monday, April 15, 2013

Adoption Profile Paperwork Almost Done

I finally got all our references for our adoption family profile.  Now I just need to write our autobiography and fill out the rest of the paperwork, gather financial info, etc.  We are still waiting for the PTR -parental termination of rights hearing, which is at the end of the month.  But, the agency is getting everything ready prior...we were told the adoption of Sweet Pea could take place in just a week or two after PTR, so we have to be ready.  I can't believe the time is so near.  However, I am worried that bio Dad will appeal his termination hearing, which he can do, just for the heck of it.  He is still in jail.  We shall see.  I am willing to wait it out.  Sweet Pea is worth every bit of angst, turmoil, and unease this foster adoption roller coaster can give me.  Bring it!!!!!!
Blessings,
The Queen Mama

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Permanency Review Hearing Saw Bio Dad

Little Sweet Pea had a permanency review hearing this week.  It was quite a surprise, actually, because it had been canceled the week before.  The caseworker said she didn't know why.  Then she called last minute and said, I need you at the courthouse for a hearing for Sweet Pea's brothers, just so the courts can see Sweet Pea, as they must every 6 months, since hear hearing was canceled.  You can leave right after they see her.  No need to stay.  So, off Sweet Pea and I went to the courthouse.  A caseworker called me into the hallway to talk before the boys' hearing.  Two prison guards came walking by with a cuffed and shackled inmate in an orange jumpsuit.  I didn't think twice as this happens on a regular basis in the courthouse.  But then, my mouth about hit the floor when I realized it was Sweet Pea's bio father!  He looked at me and out of my shock and nervousness I blurted out "Hi, (his name)".  He said "Hi."  Then walked away, then must have realized who I was and stopped, turned around and did a double take at me, then Sweet Pea.  The guards pulled him away.  I didn't understand why he was there.   The caseworker said, "I was trying to shield you from him.  Why did you say hi?"  I said, "Well, I'm obviously going to be in the courtroom with him anyway, so what's the difference?"  So, we go in to courtroom, no one dismisses me.  Bio Dad not in there. I sit through court for the brothers.  Everyone gets up to leave.  Judge says, where's everyone going?  Sweet Pea has a review hearing.  Everyone says, no.  It was canceled last week.  We don't have anything on our agenda for her hearing.  Judge said inmate dad is here, everyone's here, we're having a hearing.  Recess.  We go outside...Sweet Pea's caseworker called off that day, so her supervisor was filling in. Knew nothing about her case.  Agency attorney on vacation-sub attorney filling in.  Knows nothing about her case.  So, they both sit me down and do a 2 minute grill down on me of the case.  I tell them Dad is criminal with serious charges against him and I don't want to be in courtroom for him to focus his angst onto me.  They agree, and I sit outside and wait.  Court starts.  5 minutes later, prison guard opens door and says they are bringing bio dad out and do I want to leave the room so I don't have to encounter him.  Yes.  I leave room.  Go to different waiting room.  Wait 15 minutes.  No one gets me.  I go back to courtroom.  It's empty.  No one bothered to tell me what happened after hearing.  I go up the stairs, and Sweet Pea's GAL is coming down. He stops me and says that Bio Dad asked to see Sweet Pea for a visit during hearing that day.  GAL told him no.  I said that's good cause he's only ever seen her twice and not since she was 2 months old.  Never requested another visit, and has aggravated circumstances granted against him.  Hearing was fast, he said.  Nothing changed.  Termination of parental rights scheduled in  near future.  So, that was my crazy, unexpected permanency review hearing.  Never plan for a straight simple route in your foster adoption journey.  There are many bumps, twists, and turns along the road. 
Blessings, my dear readers,
The Queen Mama

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Bio Mom's Hearing Delayed!!

Just found out that Bio Mom's consent hearing was pushed back with Bio Dad's termination hearing.  She filed waaaaay back in October and what should have taken a few months is now taking 6 months.  This is just ridiculous.  Like I said before, this court system is a whole lot of hurry up and wait.  I knew this from our past experience, but sometimes I am like a doe-eyed, naive little girl who only thinks the best of things...So, this gives Bio Mom another 2 months to request a final visit.  I do hate this limbo period, but I do know it is worth it in the end!  For my little Sweet Pea is already my daughter in my heart...a piece of legal paper only tells me what I already know.

Monday, March 4, 2013

No Final Visit and Termination Pushed Back

Turns out Bio Mom never called for a final visit.  I was a bit perplexed, as I thought for sure she would.  She asked for a final visit with her two boys, but not Sweet Pea.  The caseworker feels there was never a bond between her and Sweet Pea, as we brought her to our home directly from the hospital.  She also said that Bio Mom seemed frustrated with Sweet Pea at her last visit over a month ago.  So this past month of wondering and worry has been for naught....Also~Bio Dad's termination hearing has been rescheduled~won't happen for almost two more months!!!! How I hate the scheduling of the court system!  Apparently Bio Dad, who has not seen Sweet Pea since she was two months old (over a year ago), nor sent any letters, requested any information about her, etc... is now bound and determined to have custody of his child turned over to his mother who is about as unsuitable to parent as they come. (Alcoholic, thief, gave her son a full crack pipe for his 16th birthday).  That kind of unsuitable.  Do I sound bitter?  Heck yes, I'm bitter.  As I said before, it takes more than DNA to parent a child.  Bio Dad has not been a parent at all and hasn't tried to parent.  He walked away.  Now he feels he should be able to determine what's best for her.  Wow, Queen Mama is ranting and raving today.  These are the days/times where I have to pause, calm down,  and turn it all over to the One who already knows what the outcome of this case will be:  my Heavenly Father. 
Blessings to you in your journeys!
The Queen Mama

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Last Week ~ Will Bio Mom Visit?

Bio Mom has one week left to have her final visit with Sweet Pea.  It has been 3 weeks since her last visit.  I am wondering if she will schedule one at all? When traveling the foster adoption journey, sometimes I feel like I share my house with the bio parents, because they are always on my mind!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Bio Dad RETRACTED Consent to Adoption!!

Okay everybody, I am seriously not believing what happened in Sweet Pea's case.  Was informed today that Bio Dad contacted his lawyer, retracted his consent to adoption (changed his mind about signing away parental rights), and wants his parents to raise Sweet Pea.   I literally screamed into the phone: WHAT?!!!  As soon as I heard the words, my heart fell to my stomach, or was it my stomach that rose to my heart, because I literally felt nauseous, dizzy, light-headed and ready to cry. 
Actually, I DO believe this, because this particular bio parent has been trouble from the get-go.  Criminal...Weapons...Drugs...screaming at the Judge, escaped prison, paranoid and delusional, etc., etc. 
     Caseworker said case now returns to a termination hearing, and does not think Judge will rule for grandparents, as the agency could not approve them suitable for kinship care.  They are divorced-Bio Grandpa inquired previously about custody as Dad wished him to.  He is ill, has a criminal and drug record himself, and is married to a drug addict. Grandpa also stated that he would prefer to have only a Grandparent role, not a parental role.  Bio Grandma is also an alcoholic and has a current sentence she is serving at home.  So, I am praying that Sweet Pea stays right where she is, in our family, the only family she has known since she was born, as we brought her home directly from the hospital.  She is now 14 months old!
Please pray for everyone in this situation!
Blessings,
The Queen Mama

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Check Out My Foster Adoption Mommy Gift Boutique!

I don't know about you, but I'm always looking for cute gifts or clothes that support and advocate adoption.  I always have a hard time finding them, so I decided to design some of my own!  I hooked up with CafePress and made some adorable designs that they in turn put on T-shirts for Women, Men, Kids & Infants, and mugs, tote bags, bibs, etc. They are so cute on your own kids or gifts for someone you know that is adopting.  You can visit my store at Foster Adoption Mommy's Boutique, and tell me what you think!  I am also working on more foster care and adoption designs at a second store I am opening, and will post it soon!   Big Daddy thinks I am crazy to take on yet another little side business, but I can't keep my passion for foster care and adoption bottled up, and this is another creative outlet for me to advocate!
Wishing you  many blessings!
The Queen Mama

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Please Welcome Guest Blogger Momma L !!

Good Evening out there crazy internet land,
How do you even go about starting a post? I mean really I probably started this thing about 5 different ways and what you just read was what I went with. Nice. By now you are probably wondering who is this dork the Queen let on her blog, well let me introduce myself...
I am Momma L. I have 4 little bits in my crew and a fabulous groom at my side. What's even better is I have an Awesome Lord guiding my way. This past year has been a wild ride in our house so I will try to give you the highlights as they pertain to the course of adoption.
 
Instead of your shame you shall have double honor; And instead of confusion they shall rejoice in their portion. Therefore in their land they shall possess double; Everlasting joy shall be theirs." Is 61:7
 
 
This is a very important verse to me, to put it short, God layed this verse on my heart in a not so subtle way and spoke to me about adoption with it. Now I had always had in mind that I would love to adopt...some day. Both my husband and I thought that, in fact we had recently, well a year prior to this verse, taken the PRIDE class. So it was on our hearts, just not pressing I would say.... until then.
Then it became pressing. We had previously discussed that when we adopt we would seek to adopt someone of Native American decent, because of ICWA it almost makes native kids a special need finding adoptive home sometimes. Sooooo back to the verse, I feel like I am rambling, I think I do that, I type how I would talk, sorry haha:) So you will notice that I said I recieved confirmation that it was time to adopt... the hubs didn't. Even after I lavished upon (please insert verbal vomit for lavished) about how I actually heard from the Lord, and Ohemgee, yada yada... he just looked at me and said "oh" or something equally heart warming.  Now mind you at this point- so very very early I, me myself my plans, was thinking we would be welcoming a child around the age of 3/2.
Let's jump ahead a few months there was a question of a cousin, and we really prayed hard about it during that time. We really prayed for God's will and His timing and as I look back it was. But after that there was much trial in our life, much. After the trying time was when my husband really said that's it, we gotta go forward with thing, get those papers in. Then shortly after that the opportunity we thought was gone was back on the table. My cousin. You might think that we just jumped right in with both feet, but we prayed first, then answered.
This journey has been by no means an easy one, as one would think considering that we are dealing with family. In some ways it makes it harder. Social workers expect things to move through quick and easy because everyone is all family, well I expect social workers to do the job that they are to do and not take the easy way. I did not expect this road to be easy or without frusteration, and I also know that I am far from over, but I do find solace that God built this from the start. He chose her to be parented by us. He could have chosen any child and still might choose more for all I know, the verse does make me a little nervous as with the usage of "double" lol. But no matter what goes on God is with us, and as you can see from my blog, we have had many things go on. It is also nice knowing that there is others out there in your same boat.
I was very hesitant as to share my story, we are not the legal parents yet, and I do have a fear of this SW getting another bee up her skirt about me, but I trust that those out there will honor my words and not share things without permission and more importantly need to hear another voice that is feeling what they are feeling. I know that frusteration, I know that agony of the child that cries in the middle of the night and you don't know why. A ridiculous fit, a holler that you aren't the real mom, unanswered emails, and voicemails. I understand, because I have been there. I am there and God is with me.
If you would like to know about our journey, please visit http://is617everlastingjoy.blogspot.com/
 

Sunday, February 3, 2013

One More Vist...

So Sweet Pea had a visit with Bio Mom the other day.  First time in 6 weeks.  It was also the next to the last time.  The caseworker said she has one more final good-bye visit when she chooses before her final consent hearing.  Selfishly,  I am jumping for joy...but then I feel guilty, because in my heart,  I am feeling sorrow for Bio Mom.  I cannot imagine saying goodbye to my child.  All I can imagine is heartache, anguish, pain...Even though she has never lived with her, as we were placed with her straight from the hospital, she did carry her for 9 months, and Sweet Pea is "her" child, biologically. 
 She brought her a few toys and a little hoodie to the visit, which I thought was very sweet.  Her entire demeanor has changed since she has been away from Bio Dad for the past 5 months.  As far as I know, she is clean and living at a halfway house where she is monitored closely.  I truly hope she can pull it together and keep it together...so she has a chance with the baby she is now carrying.  But, when Bio Dad is released from prison, I am not sure how well she will hold up.  She has told me that he has some sort of control over her emotionally.  She knows he is not good for her, but can't stay away from him.  So, my dear readers, I will be praying for God's hand of guidance in both of their lives, that they may know Him, and prosper, and that He watches over the precious baby she is carrying.
Many Blessings,
The Queen Mama

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Surprise! Bio Dad Signed Consent to Adoption!

Received the most surprising phone call today...Was informed that Bio Dad signed consent to adoption or as some of you may say, "signed his parental rights away".  Now this is Dad who absolutely refused to sign a few months ago.  Not because he wanted a chance with his daughter who he has not seen in a year (only a few times in the first two months that she was born), but because he told the courts that since "they" started this (meaning the system removed the child from his custody), "they" could finish it...(meaning waste everyone's time by going through a termination hearing.)  Not sure what changed his mind, but glad he did.  It saves everyone a lot of heartache, including him.  Termination hearings are not pretty...for anyone involved.  This does, however, make the journey to adoption a little longer.  The termination hearing was about a month away, but now we have to wait about two months just for a consent hearing to be scheduled.  Depending on the courts, it could take 1-3 months after that for the hearing.  They are always so behind.  Then, another Finalization Hearing (adoption hearing) must be scheduled, which could be another 3 months.  But, I'm not complaining, because I know we will eventually get there.
As always, we do pray for Bio Dad to get his life together.  He has had a very rough family life and upbringing.  In his case, the apple didn't fall far from the tree. He is very smart, and  I pray that he knows there is hope and help for change, if he wants to.  I wonder what he would think of us praying for him? Would he be offended or would he not mind? 
Blessings to you on your journey,
The Queen Mama

Monday, January 28, 2013

Visits Almost Over!

Haven't posted in awhile, because it's been a relatively quiet month.  Bio Mom has set up 3 visits with Sweet Pea in January and canceled every single one of them.  Just got a request for another visit.  Caseworker told me after this visit (if bio Mom shows) she will be permitted one more final good-bye visit.  I am curious whether she will show for either, whether she will complain that she wants more visits until her termination date in a month, and whether she will confront me about post adoption contact.  She has only seen Sweet Pea about 10 times in her almost 14 months of life.  Being a foster adoption parent, at least from my perspective, is really, really hard sometimes.  My emotions are so torn-I am so happy for me that visits are stopping and we are moving to my little Sweet Pea becoming part of our forever family....yet , as a decent Christian human being, also feel a tug at my heartstrings for bio Mom, who no matter how unfit to parent, will have to say good-bye to her children soon.  As a parent myself, I would be devastated.  I truly pray that bio Mom is able to defeat all the demons in her life, and go on to be happy and productive. 
Blessings to you,
The Queen Mama