Thursday, January 26, 2012

I'm retreating. Who's with me?

It's been a doozy of a week.  

After being in the adoption process for over a year now, I've experienced the emotional roller coaster that it can be.  

But being a foster parent has brought a whole new definition of emotional roller coaster.  This week I feel like we have been on one of those twisty coasters and we got stuck at the part where we are hanging upside down. 

I'm ready to get down now. 

The goal for children in foster care is permanency.  Ideally, that would be back with their parents.  If that is not an option, then it would be permanency with extended family that can support them.  And if that isn't an option, then permanency with an adoptive family. 

This week has brought some new developments in baby J's situation.  Almost daily, we've been presented with a new potential situation for his future and it's been emotionally draining.  

We aren't surprised by what's unfolded, we knew going in that there were many variables that could play out over the course of our time with him, or any child for that matter.  

But that doesn't mean we aren't emotionally exhausted from the "what-if's" in his situation. Though it looks like things have stablized for now, there is still the potential that we can get a call today, next week, or next month that they are coming to get that sweet baby and move him. 

And that's difficult to wrap my head around. 

We love this little guy and want the best for his life.  As foster parents, we don't have a lot of say in his future,  so it's a lot of listening to the social workers, taking deep breaths, and praying for the absolute best placement for HIM.  Not for us.  

Easy to say, not so easy to accept, if it's not with us. 

Deep breaths. 

So, after the week it's been, I'm really excited to get to join 400 other women at the Created for Care conference in Atlanta this weekend.  

I went last year and it was a HUGE encouragement for me as we had just started the adoption conference. 

I'm joining seven other women from Montgomery to head up to Lake Lanier tomorrow for the conference...

 Is anyone else in bloggy world going to be there? I would love to meet you! 

Sunday, January 22, 2012

My new addiction.

As I've written about before,  when I find something I like, I tend to go a little overboard with it..... Currently, my wardrobe is focused on scarves and sweater coats.  Guaranteed outfit at least five times a week.

I'm trendy like that.

My new addiction is making wreaths. I'm up to four in the past few months.  

It may be time for a support group.

Thanks to Pinterest, I can make really cute wreaths and appear to have smidge of creativity and skill.

Here's the latest wreath I made this weekend.  It's easy to make.  I pinky-swear promise. 

I used a straw wreath and kept the plastic wrapping on it. Then I wrapped a tri-color string around the wreath.  

The flowers are made out of felt.  I bought rectangular sheets of it from a local craft store.  They look way more difficult to make than they are.  (Rest assured, I only attempt crafts with three-step directions or less.) 

I take absolutely no credit for the design.....Here's the Pinterest link to the wreath.  

It's so cute I'm trying to figure out where I could put another one (or three), like it in my house.  

Or maybe I'll just ditch my scarves and start wearing them around my neck.  

Monday, January 16, 2012


I live in a city where today holds great significance.  Martin Luther King, Jr. pastored a church on Dexter Avenue in Montgomery.  He became the champion of the Montgomery Bus Boycott, an act of nonviolence that changed the course of history.

I also live in a state that celebrates another man's birthday on this day, General Robert E. Lee, a confederate soldier.  Both are recognized as state holidays.  And some residents of this state are very vocal that they celebrate Robert E. Lee day, NOT Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Oh, the joys of the deep south.

There has been much hope restored to this city that for so long lived racially divided.  It is a town rich in history, in triumph, and in pain.

As a family that now has an african american baby living with them, I am forever grateful for the courage and vision of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  His decision to speak words of freedom and justice did not come without pain and sorrow.  He sacrificed his comfort and a life of ease in order to speak for those that had no voice.

Today I feel the weight of that, because he spoke for the little boy that we hold in our arms.

“I have a dream that one day little black boys and girls 
will be holding hands with little white boys and girls.” 
                                                                                                                -- MLK

Our city is not yet completely healed from the wounds of segregation.  The dream for all children to be given an equal education has not yet been fulfilled.

While blatant segregation may be gone, our diverse city has not embraced each other fully.  Yes, we are a city that, on the surface, acknowledges each other in passing.  But we don't have authentic community with each other.

The best way to tell? Our churches.  While I am thankful to say that our church has families of all races, worshipping together, we are still far from where we need to be based on the demographic population around us.

Brian and I have had many conversations about raising a child of african american or african descent in this city.  Frankly, it scares me at times.  Not for how we will be treated, but for what our child will face.

Everyone loves a baby and toddler, with chubby cheeks and sweet coos and giggles, no matter their color.  But what happens when that child grows into a teenager and asks your white daughter to prom?

“I have a dream that one day little black boys and girls 
will be holding hands with little white boys and girls.” 

Thank you, Dr. King, for your dream.

It's become my dream too.  And though I am, at times, anxious about what the future holds-- I know that this dream is taking shape, because I see it happening in the families and churches in our city.

Things are not healed in our city.

But they are healing.

Reconciliation is coming.

Through foster care.

Through adoption.

Through our churches that are beginning to welcome EVERYONE who walks through their door, no matter their color or their place in society.

Through ministries where we are serving TOGETHER to care for poor.

Thank you, Dr. King, for your voice and your willingness to speak for those that couldn't.  Your former city is not healed yet.  But we're getting there.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Update: Our Nursery- the finished product!

The nursery is done! It only took us eight weeks (jeesh), but it is complete and we love it! 
Update: See the bottom of this post for links to where to find some of the items!

Love, Love, Love our world decal!
 X's for our journey to our kiddos- one for our foster journey in AL
and the other in the DRC! 

Shout out to Pinterest for the inexpensive wall idea!

I've had some people ask where I found some of the products in the nursery - I found some great deals! 

Baby Bedding: Dwell Studio for Target   It's on clearance right now for less than $50!

World Map Decal: Bubba Doodles on Etsy  You can pick your call for the map and X's

"Love Makes a Family" Decal: Trading Phrases

Animal Prints: Idea from Pinterest.  I used frames, scrapbook paper, and burlap from Hobby Lobby

Lamp: Target

Changing Table Pad: Amazon

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Today's Post Brought to You by the Southern Swoop and the Number 3.

The cool thing about having a blog is that you get to see how people ended up at your site...  I can see from which countries people are viewing the blog, which referring blogs they are coming from, and which keywords are leading them to this page. 

Which brings me to a very interesting and somewhat amusing bit of information....

So far this month, the top three keywords that have lead people to my blog are........

1. Southern swoop

2. Southern swoop hair

3. Number 3 

And for the ENTIRE time I've had my blog..... "Southern Swoop" ranks 2nd all-time on my keyword search. 

(Don't know what "Southern Swoop" is? Head over here and I'll fill you in....)

I was kinda hoping that "adoption," "orphan care," "foster care" would be in the top ten of what led people to Waiting on a Word.  

Not so much. 

Also on the All-time top ten list was "barbeque." 


I'm making a difference people.  One haircut and pulled pork sandwich at a time. 

Sunday, January 1, 2012

My Turn!

Never one to miss out on what's going on around me, (except last night when I was asleep by 10pm),  I wanted to add my own version of a New Year's list! 

Here goes...

Five things I never thought would happen and did in 2011. 

1. I was a part of launching, ONEfamily, our adoption/foster/orphan care ministry at our church.  I had planned on just helping out with the ministry once someone started it. I certainly wasn't going to start it because that was really going to cut into my schedule and I'm not someone who "starts" things.  I just help once the vision has been planted.  Well, God had another plan and it involved me jumping in and really getting my hands dirty to help start the ministry....and I love it.  So excited to be a part of a ministry that God is using to shake-up the way the families in our church look at caring for the orphan.  So thankful for a church that is receptive to it!

2.  We added another four-legged vehicle of destruction, I mean, dog, to our family. Bandit is our sweet, slightly skittish, renegade who is totally enamored with his big brother, Knox.  He came to us with no manners, probably because he has spent most of his life on the streets.  He does not believe in wiping his mouth after drinking and he passes really bad smelling gas.  A lot.  

3.  I never thought we would already be through 2011 and still be without a referral of our little ones from the DRC.  When we received our immigration approval in June, I thought for sure we'd have a referral by September.  If not September, then surely by Christmas........  And still we wait.  It's hard at times, as we long to see their face.  However, number #4 on this list has definitely helped us focus on enjoying what we have in front of us...

4. Which is our sweet, eight-week old foster baby, "J".  I never imagined we'd be foster parents.  In fact, I actually said out loud, "I could never be a foster parent."  AND.....that sealed the deal....anytime I say "never" to something, it's a 250% guarantee I'll being doing it in the future.  Though I never could have imagined this is the path we'd be on, I wouldn't change a thing!

5.  I blogged.  A lot.  65 posts, in fact.  What started as a once-in-a-while blog to update our long-distance families on the adoption has turned into so much more.  Which is weird.  But I like it.  Thanks for reading my very opinionated thoughts, my bloggy friends.  I hope to get to meet some of you in the real world one day.

Five Things I'm Looking Forward to in 2012. 

1. Continuing to not work out.  Let's face it.  I hate running and getting really sweaty. I'm just not an attractive sweater-er.  I really have tried to enjoy working-out, but I don't.  I attempt to work out consistently once a year and it lasts 1-3 months, on average.   So, I'm not going to try and act like I'm going to work out.  Instead, I will cheer on my friends who run 5 marathons a year while pregnant and hit the gym daily at 5am.

2.  Getting to see our child's picture for the first time when we get the referral.  Can't WAIT!

3. Getting the privilege of watching our little man, "J,"grow and change as a baby.  We love being able to be his parents for the "right now."

4. Walking alongside more of our church family as they become foster and adoptive families.  We had thirteen families complete the fall foster care training class with us and fifteen more families interested in taking the classes this spring!

5. Seeing what adventure God has us on next.  It's been a non-stop roller-coaster ride the past two and a half years with Brian as we have grown together and in our walk with the Lord.  I could never have imagined where we would be today, so I won't even try to predict where God will have us by the end of 2012.  What I do know is I'm excited to see where we go as a family this next year!