Thursday, August 25, 2005

Kaia Rose

Sometimes the illusion of anonymity on the web is dangerous. Someone posted comments on Rosie's blog using the name "Kaia Rose," which of course is my daughter. She didn't post those comments, because she was in school, then with Holly while most of them were posted. She takes an opposite stance to the commentor, and she would probably gladly debate that person (She is quite well spoken).

I'm sad that someone would take the name that she spent so much time and effort and heart choosing and use it to slam someone for whom she has so much respect. It seems deliberate - it's a rather unique name. Was it jealousy? Did that person know that Kaia was the one that moved Rosie to give the cruises to, and so try to sabotage? I don't know.

The comments are closed. I guess when they are opened Kaia will have to go and defend herself. She can, she is a great writer, but she should not have to. I guess this is her first experience with fame - or at least being out there so that people know who you are.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005


The twins are sick (bronchitis) but they were so happy this morning. I got lots of hugs and 'bye-bye moms'. It is a great way to start the day.

Ben can almost do a chin-up. I don't think that 16 mo babies are supposed to be this strong, so it must just show how remarkable he is. If they don't have their trays on them, Sophia can climb up into either highchair. She can't get down, yet, so she sits lording over Ben (who climbs better but is just too short to make it) until she wants down, then she squeals until one of us gets her out.

Just wanted to brag.

Monday, August 22, 2005

to be or not to be

All sorts of interesting things happened yesterday. Kaia made plans to meet with her biomom/sisters at the mall. She was hesitant about having us there because last time her mother 'got sick' and she was afraid the illness had to do with meeting us. Holly made it clear that we don't leave our kids hanging to dry and said we'd be there, we would hang out elsewhere, if she wanted, but we'd be in the building. And we're not wicked witches, we are mature enough to be pleasant and keep any judgmental thoughts to ourselves.

These types of meetings are very painful for us. We've done our best to parent these girls for three or four years. We've tried to build trust and self confidence and overcome abuse and neglect. In every case, their biomoms were a major cause of the problem, but they keep running back. If they can't run back, they romanticize the memories - their biomoms did the best they could, she was addicted, she didn't understand how to deal with me.... They love their biomoms. They know it hurts us, and we know they can't help it. I guess we are all wired to love our mother figures.

It is very difficult for us to view these women objectively. We deal with the results of the abuse, neglect and molestation that these women caused or let happen. They lose girls who are effed up, come back for the finished product, and totally miss the nightmares that come out in the middle.

The meeting seemed to go well. We ate lunch together in the foodcourt, then Kaia went off with them to shop and we shopped for clothes for M, who was with us for the afternoon. Her family was polite and nice and her mom seemed to be in a sane place. She privately thanked Holly and me for the work we'd done. Kaia seemed to enjoy herself.

One thing that we never let work us over are the threats to go back. The first time it comes out the answer is if you want to live with your bio family, thats up to you. We won't be manipulated.

E is dealing with her bio environment pretty much like we expected. We'd like to think that her taking BG home to small town hell yesterday and promising to come back, alone, in time to start community college on Tuesday is a big step. We know that she might fall off again, even several times. I think that she sees Holly and me for what we are, and that we only have her best interest at heart. She honestly can't say that about her biofamily or practically anyone in small town hell.

We had a visit with M yesterday. She asked me why Kaia would choose to not tell her family about her name change. I told her she didn't want to hurt her biomom's feelings. M's first response, was "SO?" then she stopped her self and admitted that she wouldn't want to hurt her mom's feelings, either. I was impressed that she sees this so young.

Thursday, August 18, 2005


Yesterday, as you know if you read Holly's blog, we (mostly Holly and E) babysat a set of beautiful twin girls that we'd fostered from age 3 to 8 mos. Now they are almost 18 months old, just six weeks older than our twins. The experience gave us all a taste of how quads would be, and it wasn't something we would wish for.
It did show us many things:
  • our babies are doing well developmentally, as they easily kept up with the older girls;
  • boys are different than girls - the three girls, even at this young age, wanted more contact with each other and the adults than B;
  • even though we really grieved when the girls left us for their adoptive placement, it was the right thing to do.
  • Having them around showed that our twins are OURS and perfect for us, and H and H are doing very well with their adoptive mother.
  • S is the most beautiful baby in the world. Whenever we finally get Holly's divorce decree from California (curse their disorganization) and the adoption goes through, I will post a picture and you can agree with me.
  • We couldn't help but compare the two sets of twins and for some reason, S and B just seemed preferable in practically every situation.
  • Babysitting four children under two is fun, but longterm would be totally and completely exhausting.

Okay, well, I can't exactly speak for my other family members, but this is how I feel.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

morning of the first day of school

The day started out pretty well, at least for me. Holly had to get up at 4:30 to take E to the hospital for an upper and lower GI procedure. I took the morning off to watch the babies and take the teens to their first day of school.

The twins usually start fussing to get out of bed about 7, so I went back to sleep. About 6:45 I woke to dogs barking and went downstairs. S, in a nervous bout of energy that she sometimes gets on big days, had gotten up when Holly left, gotten Ben out of bed, changed his diaper and fed him, gotten herself dressed, made K coffee and me iced tea. Now, even though I new that Ben would have been perfectly happy talking and drowsing in bed until 7, I thanked her and drank my tea. K came downstairs, showered and dressed. What to do? They didn't have to be at school until 9am... Of course!!! K had the perfect answer - IHOP!

So I got dressed and took everyone to IHOP for breakfast. We made it to school with plenty of time for K to show S where her first couple of classes were. I went home, put the twins down for their nap, and took one myself until Holly and E got home. The procedure went well. Didn't see any ulcers and the doctor feels that her stomach problems are stress related.

A very good morning. E didn't have any after affects from the procedure - as a matter of fact, since she had not eaten since lunch yesterday, she made a pretty big lunch for herself. She now has contact with two catering companies, which hopefully will keep her employed well enough to provide some comfort while she goes to school (yes, if you haven't been reading Holly's blog, she has decided to go to culinary school again) Her girlfriend, BG, was eating lunch with E when E told me about the second caterer. Trying to gently keep up the pressure, I told BG that it was up to her, now. Once she is regularly employed, they can get their own apartment, and she didn't get mad or defensive or anything. She said that she knew that and Holly's ex was going to show her some places to try. She even sounded enthusiastic about it. (Holly's ex, although a very smart woman, has experience dealing with people who have no education or experience and maybe a bit too much attitude, so we asked her to help.)

I know that this feeling may be fleeting. Lot's of things can still go wrong, but I am going to enjoy this while I can. Life is so much easier when you've had enough sleep!!

Friday, August 12, 2005

when things work

S, our fourteen year old, is starting high school this year. She was in band in middle school and she kind of liked it, even though she isn't very good. We insisted that she stay in band at least to start high school. Band, in my experience, is someplace where you can be a little more off the wall and weird than the general school population and still be part of the group. Lord only knows that S needs all the help she can get to fit in. Her band directors have a policy of finding a place for everyone that wants to participate. Even though she couldn't play or march well enough to take part that way, her director explained that she could be the Color Guard manager, and help keep all of their equipment straight. He made it sound like an honor and she is pretty exited about it.

One of the band seniors called Holly the other day and explained that they have a tradition of kidnapping the band freshman early one morning and taking them out to have a party. Today was the morning. About a dozen seniors, complete with trumpet, cymbals and silly string, arrived at our house at 5:20 this morning. After I let them in, they quietly made their way to S's room opened the door and woke her to a cacophony. S handled it so well. She sleepy and confused, but she went and had a good time. It was probably one of the most normal things she's ever done.

We hope hope hope that she can get support from band. At least she will know people in her classes and in the hallways. She'll go to the football games and have a responsibility within the group. Those things made a big difference for me in high school. We don't know how much to let go. You never know if she is going to respond to something as a fifteen year old or a seven year old, but she seemed to handle this well, and that's a good sign.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

love love love

I love my kids!!!
K had a great day at work yesterday. She has made some friend/acquaintances, which is a big deal for her. We all know that work is so much easier when you have someone to talk to. She and E are both doing part time work for a caterer starting next week. If this could work out, it would be perfect, since they both want to get into culinary school.

The twins are both absolutely brilliant! Sophia is learning new words every day! She's been saying "Wee doe wee doe wee doe" for a few days, but we didn't know it meant something specific until Holly turned on the Wiggles and she squealed and shouted "Wee doe!" and pointed at the TV. She calls both of us mommy, now, and will say "I lu" and give hugs. She will also hold her hand out, palm up and say "peez" if you ask her to. Yesterday, she figured out how to climb into their car shaped exersaucer/activity thing. This made Ben mad because he'd been trying to get in it for twenty minutes. I think he is just too short, still. Ben climbed up on the Leap Pad Table and stood up with no hands. He can't do it every time yet, but he is getting more and more confident.

I know that everyone believes that their kids are brilliant, but that doesn't phase me.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

a long weekend

Usually, a long weekend means extra time off from work. This time it means that Holly is out of town. Her grandma isn't doing very well. Send her some prayers and/or positive energy!! Holly's mom is so stressed out, as well. She is the primary caretaker of the whole family, and she takes that job seriously. It isn't easy to watch your mother suffer.

Holly took our fourteen year old with her, and left me with the twins, Kaia and E, who is still around and determined to be helpful. She has been helpful. Kaia had her second eight hour work day today and wanted more attention/sympathy than I had to give her. I know her feet hurt and she is tired, but I'd done lots of laundry and twin tending and missing Holly and was dwelling in my own little space. The good part is that I've spent so much time with the twins. They've figured out how to go down their slide by themselves and will get on their swing and sit backwards, swing and laugh about it.

I guess we all have our own ways of coping. Luckily, Kaia is mature enough to understand. Send a bit more positiveness to Holly and her mom and grandma!

Friday, August 05, 2005

got tagged...

  • 5 years ago today: I was in San Antonio taking care of my sister during her second bone marrow transplant.
  • yesterday: made my sweetie sloppy joes for her birthday, by request
    today: ate pancakes, runny eggs and cold cheese pizza that my fourteen year old made for dinner
  • 5 snacks I enjoy: fudgecycles, popcorn, cheetos, nuts, cold spaghetti
  • 5 bands that I know the lyrics of most of their songs: Sting, kd lang, melissa etheridge, cher, the wiggles
  • 5 things I would do with $100,000,000: 1) take my family on a round the world cruise 2) figure out a way to help foster kids age out sanely 3) give money to charities that I liked 4) pay off my friends' mortgages 5) quit my job
  • 5 bad habits I have: 1) whining 2) sulking 3) talking to random strangers (although sometimes it works out well) 4) eat too much cheese 5) procrastination
  • 5 things I would never wear: things that itch, clothing that would require me to shave places I don't want to, latex, anything that is too hot.
  • 5 famous people: Rosie, Ellen, Cher, Sting, Prince
  • 5 TV shows I like: numbers, medium, what not to wear, Amazing Race, Kept
  • 5 movies I like: Point of no return, Purple Rain, To Kill a Mockingbird, Birdie, Harry Potter
  • 5 biggest joys at this moment: Family, Music, Books, Family, Music
  • 5 people to tag: not going there.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005


E drove off with gf without really giving Holly the time of day. We really just want to know what's going on. Are they going to stay for awhile? Where are they going to stay? Are we supposed to feed them and give them gas money or are they going to find jobs?

If they would just buckle down for a few months, they could get their s**t together and life would be so much easier. Why is it so hard for kids to understand? At least these kids? Most kids party and do stupid things when they are at this age, but most of them also work a job and or go to college or a training program. That is the difference.

I remember those days clearly. My friends and I going camping with a 10 gallon cooler filled with Everclear spiked lemonade. I always had to drive because my 10 year old Toyota station wagon was the best, most reliable car of the bunch. We would have fun and get drunk, but we mostly made it back to school and work the next week. And we all eventually graduated, paired up, got real jobs, bought houses, had kids. I wonder if E would find buckling down easier if she'd been with us for longer.

home again

Our oldest, E, after going back to her dreadful hometown for a wedding and staying for over a week, called us Sunday and said that she and her girlfriend were going to a town in South Texas where gf's cousin or some relative owned a business and was going to give them jobs. We were a little surprised, because gf's family has not produced much positive as far as we know. Then, of course called last night and said they were coming back to us because the cousin's jobs would take awhile to pan out. Don't know what we are supposed to do with them. Still can't keep gf in the house because, last we heard she has someone out to kill her, and she's a known drug dealer. This pisses off E, because she feels like we don't support her with the love of her life. If they'd put serious effort in to it when they were in town last time, they'd have jobs by now and be within a month or so of getting an apartment. Of course, it's hard to get a job that pays enough to live on when you don't have marketable skills or high school diploma/ged.

Holly is trying to see if she can get them involved with Job Corp. Then they could finish their GEDs and learn a marketable skill and maybe get some other help on the way. It is all very frustrating.