Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Proof...

"So who are these amazingly-gorgeous kids," you might ask?  Only my absolute favorite kiddos in the world...  New baby Little Miss, my twin niece and nephew Ka-Diva and Buddy, and that adorable little guy in the middle...  My Booger Bear!!!  :-)

The past month and a half has been a whirlwind of happiness and excitement with Little Miss (and soon-to-be Itty Bitty) coming into my life.  And just as exciting has been my newfound friendship with Booger's daddy (Kelly) and new mommy (Heaven).  What started with me sending an out-of-the-blue email to Booger's daddy telling him that I had put together a baby book for them and Booger to have, and wishing Booger a happy 2nd birthday, quickly turned into us becoming FaceBook friends, FarmVille buddies, and now weekend playdate partners in crime.

I hadn't seen Booger Bear since the morning I took him to daycare the day of the final court hearing back in March.  I look back now and realize that was probably best for both of us.  The first time I got to see him was a total surprise.  Heaven and Kelly are expecting a baby girl next year, and they had a bunch of 12-18 month little girl clothes that they had received from family that they thought I might be able to use for Little Miss (just goes to show how thoughtful these kids are :).  When they came by to drop them off, I opened the door to see all three of them

Booger Bear came in like he owned the place.  You could tell that he thought that he should know who I was, but that he couldn't quite place me.  He was insanely jealous of Little Miss (who was in my lap the whole time), and he wasn't really sure why.  :-)  He sat there and talked to me for 20 minutes like we were best buddies.  He's a smart little thing...  Talking in full sentences and carrying on intelligent conversations...  We talked about his animals, his love of lizzards, his girlfriend, and how he's glad he wears a diaper because his ferret bites his butt.  :-)

The next weekend, Booger's baby book came in so I asked if the three of them would want to meet at the park to pick it up.  I told them that I'd most likely have the twins with me, and they quickly suggested having a picnic with us and all of the kids.  It was an awesome afternoon!  The twins were really worried that Booger wouldn't remember them, but Heaven did a great job the night before putting together presents for the twins with Booger and talking all about them so he'd know their names.  When they got to the park, Buddy and Ka-Diva asked, "Do you remember us Booger?"  He just smiled really big and said, "Yeah!"  That made them feel so good...  And the fact that the three of them immediately picked up right where they left off was awesome!

Booger trying to get a smile out of Little Miss.  She's a hard sell.  :-)

Feeding the ducks (although Booger was feeding himself more than the ducks)

My little stairsteps...  Deep in thought (and nose-picking)

Buddy and Little Miss are already crazy about each other.  If anyone can get a smile out of her, Buddy can!

Ka-Diva, the little babysitter (she takes her role as "big cousin, soon-to-be big sister" very seriously.  She insisted on holding Booger's hand any time we walked anywhere, and she kept assuring Heaven and me that she wouldn't let him go anywhere dangerous. :-)  You can also see that Little Miss is trying to get Buddy to pay attention to her.  :-)

Just a good pic of Buddy...

Best friends...

Kissin' Cousins...  :-)

We had a great 4-hour day in the park, and Kelly and Heaven said that Booger hasn't been that happy or well-behaved in months.  I think part of them is secretly looking to me to help them get him through the "terrible twos."  He's a handful, and he knows he runs that house.  I don't want to overstep by correcting him or anything (definitely a hard thing to step back when I spent a year doing just that), but they seem to be paying lots of attention when I talked to him about sharing, being gentle, being safe, etc.  They seemed kind of shocked that he listened to me.  :-)  He's a smart kid.  You can actually reason with him and explain the "why" of things.  It was just an awesome day!  Booger kept asking me to hold him, and followed Buddy around like a little puppy dog the way he used to.  And that night, Kelly and Heaven said that his good behavior and total good mood carried on throughout the rest of the day.  :-)

I ended up inviting them to Little Miss' 1st birthday party the next weekend because the visit had gone so well, and they came (despite Kelly being INSANELY allergic to my cat :-)!  My parents and my best friends got to see Booger again for the first time, and he had a blast playing with Buddy, Ka-Diva, and all of the little friends he had when he was a baby.  (I'll be doing a separate post on Little Miss' party, but it was another great day with the people I love the most.)

Kelly, Heaven, and I talk almost every day.  They've even added my mom as a friend on FaceBook and talk to her too!  When I look at them and see how hard they are trying, and know how loved Booger is, it makes me realize that foster care does work.  Yes, they are kids...  But they are really good kids who are doing their very best to love and raise this little boy who I love so much.  And the fact that Heaven has taken him as her own makes me love that girl like crazy!  They've ask my advice on different things, and it makes me feel good to know that they value my opinion when it comes to our little guy.  I am constantly telling them how proud I am of them and how they are doing a great job.

I am so thankful for this new opportunity to be back in my Booger Bear's life...  To be a role model for his parents...  And to be able to be able to see firsthand how my role as Booger's foster mom has helped him, his daddy, and his new mommy become a family.  Foster care can work!  And these kids are the proof!  :-)

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