Saturday, May 21, 2016
Friday, April 8, 2016
|This is so pretty - but takes more time than I have|
I never know if I will keep kids for a day, a week, a month, or a lifetime. I prefer the lifetime option, but it's usually not my choice. So, I choose the quick and easy, get it done, make it look good, option.
Go to Hobby Lobby (or any other craft store - this is just my favorite) and pick up a PRE-MADE scrapbook!
|A pre-made scrapbook from Hobby Lobby|
My little man picked this out, he loves monkeys. I just used a few stickers to put his name on the front. There are 16 pages inside this one. That was exactly what I needed. One for each month we had him, then adoption day!
All of the cute decorations were already here! The ONLY thing I did was add two photos to this spread. Seriously easy. I could have added more, but you can tell exactly what I wanted to be seen.
These two months I had a few extra minutes. In May I added the "May" sticker and a hand print we made with model magic and paint. Then in June I added the "June" sticker and some birthday stickers. The buttons and colors were already there!
This may not be an option for everyone, but I love the way it turned out. It was a great way to chronicle the months he was in foster care. The book was the same price as a 'regular' blank book, but in the end cost a little more since there are less pages included (and it is smaller).
Now that we have 2 more kids, I have gone back to Hobby Lobby (hubby hates those receipts!) and gotten two more books. I will take thousands of photos like I always do, then pick 1 to print each month. Then we will add it into their books.
I use photo corners to put the photos in, just like in my other book. I do this because most of the writing is on the back of the photo. One day, my little man may want to know what else was going on in the photo, where we were, why he is making a silly face, etc. The photo corners allow me to put that on the back of the photo, then pull the photo off at any time without any damage to the photo itself - or the scrapbook page.
Friday, March 25, 2016
|This is a very beautiful page|
- I did not make it
|So pretty -|
again, not mine
I love digital scrapbooking. It has come a long way in the last few years, but I keep it simple. Walgreen's is usually my preferred stop, but Walmart also has great options. Walgreen's is just closer, and there is no construction getting there. Check out Walgreen's digital scrapbook pages - not just a book. Disclaimer - I am in no way compensated for telling you about these products, but would happily accept any and all compensation!
In one of those rare moments of purging, I went through some boxes in my bedroom. They had been there since we moved in (I refuse to tell you how long that has been!) and realized that I have 3 boxes of photos, scrapbook pages that had been started, and miscellaneous items to be put into a scrapbook. Some of these photos were several years old. Before I used a digital camera all the time. Some were even from high school. Digital cameras weren't even a thing back then!
|Digital scrapbook from Walgreens.com|
Linen cover, 8.5x11 classic
Digital scrapbooking is great for current photos. I have made several of these books - usually after a special trip/ mission trip.
They are really easy to do. All you do is go to walgreens.com or any other photo shop, upload your photos, then place them into the book. Walgreens has a feature called autofill. This was great for my oldest son's graduation book. I didn't have any particular place/order for the photos, so this made it extra quick.
Then I just filled in captions, and had the book finished in under an hour!
|Finished page of my digital book|
So what do you do with 10 years of old printed photos?
What do you do when you have CPS workers coming and they want to see the kids life book?
I have 2 great options! I will show you one now - one later :)
For that box of photos from before digital cameras, high school, school photos, band photos, etc, I bought a regular 12x12 scrapbook.
|Regular 12x12 scrapbook from Hobby Lobby - about $15|
Then I grabbed my stack of photos and wrote as much of a description as I could on the back. The most important information is NAMES and DATES. Armed with a stack of cute scrapbooking paper, and photo corners, I put the pages in and called it a day.
|These photos were just placed on a plain colored page|
|What a difference when you use patterned paper!|
|I got a little fancy here (on the right). I still finished the page in under 10 minutes|
So, you see that it's not super fancy, but the photos are being enjoyed! That is the most important thing to me. The kids show the book off to friends, the baby loves to look through it, and I notice people looking through it when they come visit (it sits on the end table in the living room). I have received many compliments from this book. No one is criticizing the lack of decorations (if they did, they wouldn't be invited over again!), or even mentioning the embellishments. The just comment on the main focal point - the photo. Isn't that what this is all about?
Note: I use the photo corners instead of glue so that the photos can be removed and the writing on the back read one day (by my grandkids?), or the photos can be hung in frames, etc. There is nothing glued to the photo or in any other way hindering the photo from being copied or moved to a new location one day.
Monday, March 7, 2016
Adventures in Adoption - Series 2 - A short term Placement
|The initial text messages - edited for privacy|
1) Where would I put a 2yo girl? I do not like babies upstairs, and the boys (1 and 3 yo babies) would have the downstairs room.
2) I could not drive to the visits. Every Monday. 5 hours of the day. I could make the sacrifice, but Cynthia has college classes at the same time. I don't like leaving a 14 yo on a college campus any longer than her class time. That's a whole different post though.
So, I said no. This wouldn't work for us. The messages went on for about half an hour, and in the end - long story short - I am going to pick up two babies just before church. Yipee. Oh goodness. Clean the babies room. Wash the car seats! Get the extra seat out of the attic. Find the pack-n-play. Find the pack-n-play sheets. Clean Nikkis room (that's where baby girl has to go....), pack a snack for at church, I don't know if they will be hungry. Get sippy cups filled and labeled. Pack an extra diaper bag.
It's a crazy, all-hands-on-deck, put school work aside, kind of afternoon.
Then I get a call at 3:45. They aren't coming. Due to the importance of the visits and my inability to get them there (scheduling conflicts and the sheer distance), this is on hold.
What a roller coaster! Codie gets home from work at 4:30, and I give him an update of our crazy afternoon. Then I get another phone call.
Placement is back on. Just respite though. 2-3 weeks. I don't like this at all. These babies need stability. I don't want to have them in my house for a few weeks, have them get used to me and I fall in love with them - then they leave! No way. But considering the circumstances, there are probably a lot worse places for them to go. Not that we are anywhere near perfect, but they need love a place to go.
Ok - so we will get the babies tomorrow.
7:45pm Wednesday - I get another text message. I am at church and don't see it until Thursday morning. The kids will be at my house by noon for a placement. Ok. No problem. I still don't know if this is respite or a placement. One caseworker says one thing, the other says another.
11 am - the kids arrive. Things are going great. I have no problems with the "screamer." I can tell that this is a normal 2 yo who wants attention. And food. The entire day, and all day Friday the only time we have problems is when she is tired or hungry. We spent the afternoon at the park, then went to a banjo show (and found a playground!) Yes, she has temper tantrums, but what 2 yo doesn't? Again, feed the baby, then put her in bed. She will cry/scream, but she is in a safe place (the crib) and will fall asleep.
5 pm Friday - CPS meets us at the big kids banjo show (show 2 of 4 this weekend) and picks the kids up. Not too sure what is going on, but there was something about an angry judge, cps workers who didn't agree, and a family member. Ok.
I go on into the banjo show. Codie is about to graduate so he will be graduated from the band as well. This is his last big show :( It makes me sad, but life must go on. I can't keep him a baby forever.
The first act is over and sweet baby Moses and I are having fun playing with his newest friend. The phone rings - uh oh. It's another placement.
I say no. Can't do it.
7:30 Friday - another call. Two sisters, new to the system and just removed from their home. I said yes. Before the sheets are changed from the last two, and before this blog entry is finished, I have two more kids. I get a little info from my caseworker, warn hubby, and enjoy the last 5 minutes of the show.
1 am Saturday - the girls arrive. Sound asleep. I worry about them waking up in a new house and want them to be together and comfortable.
This is the life God has told us to live right now. It may not be easy. It is definitely not predictable. But it is one, I pray everyday, that will glorify God.