Christmas and Changes in New Year

It is almost Christmas and I have completed my shopping and wrapping. This is the earliest that I have ever accomplished this. Kids are out of school early for the next two days and then they will be out for two long weeks.
It has been a long crazy year for us but once again we all survived and no bail money was needed.  We met a lot of new people this last year and even had the pleasure of parenting a few new kids this last year even if only briefly. We look forward to the coming years and with it new opportunities.

As most everyone knows we chose to stop fostering two years ago this January. After over 80 children have passed through our home with some never leaving over the last 14 years. After adopting many and wishing we could have adopted many more it was time to move on to other things.

Orphan care and child welfare have always been my passion. So I still was not ready to stop that part of my life. I worked for two years in Post adopt services and met many amazing and dedicated adoptive families around the State. I loved working with the families and I learned so much from each of them. IT inspired me to learn more and so I did. I became certified in any and everything that could help me with hurting and struggling families as well as my own often hurting and strugling family. So I was certified in Anger management, crisis intervention, Parenting with Love and Logic, Parenting by Design, Trust Based Relational Intervention, Youth Mental Health First Aid, Clinical Aroma Therapy, Parenting Life Coach and reflexology. Some of these things I have used to help other families as well as helping my own family. Some have been futile in helping some and useful for others. What I did learn is if something does not help try something else because these kids are worth fighting for.

What I did learn in my work with other families, is that the foster and adoptive families that have chosen to give their lives to care for these children are hurting too. I completed my degree in Biblical studies with a certification in Christian counseling to help families. Because there is only one true healer and that is our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He is the only thing that has helped me to survive the life and children I have been blessed with.

Now with the new year approaching I am taking on a whole new direction in my life. Next week I start working for DFPS as an investigator. This was a hard decision to make. Working on the opposite side of child welfare will be a huge endeavor and a real challenge for me. The hardest decision in deciding to take this position I would have to step down as president of Council On Adoptable Children of Texas as well as finding someone to run the support group in Johnson County that I have facilitated for the last 10 years, I would no longer be able to do my Parenting Life coaching or consulting and training for other agencies or Christian counseling for families as DFPS considers all of this as a conflict of interest. But I feel that God has plans for opening this door as another whole new learning experience for me.

I want to thank all of you that have made such a differance in so many kids lives. May God bless you all richly for what you do.  I pray that I can continue making a difference as well even if on the other side.
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