10 lazy things for your elf on the shelf to do

Things your elf on the shelf can do that don’t require you to clean up

  1. Have them read a book
  2. Literally just sit them on a shelf
  3. Have them bring a note from Santa with a good deed your child should do
  4. Have them bring a small gift
  5. Have them sliding down the banister
  6. Have them sleeping in a doll bed
  7. Have them making your child’s lunch (I saw this on Facebook and thought it was genius)
  8. Sit them on top of a fan or chandelier
  9. Put them in your stockings (possibly with a little treat)
  10. Have them write on your whiteboard. (A lot less messy than a mirror)

10 business ideas all moms would love

Some of these may already exist and if they do please send me links.

  1. Drive thru grocery store. Not delivery. But an actual drive thru. Like when I run out of something and don’t want to get the kids out of the car.
  2. In Home nail/hair service. Okay I’m pretty sure this exists but probably only for people who can afford to spend a lot of money. I would love to get my hair cut in the comfort of my own home while my children run around like crazy people.
  3. In door play land. Alright I know these exist too. However there aren’t enough of them that aren’t attached to a fast food restaurant. It would even be nice to have them in actual restaurants.
  4. Baby swimming lessons where you don’t have to get in the water. Sure it’s great bonding time but sometimes I don’t feel like it. It would be nice if they had enough instructors to take them all in.
  5. Doctors who come to your home. I think a few of these still exist but it would be nice if a lot more doctors did this. (Oh and had more appointments after 3 for working parents).
  6. Places for foster children to have visits. I am not talking about a room in the DCFS office but a place that has age appropriate toys, cribs for babies, changing tables, toddler toilets, and maybe even a kitchen to cook. Throwing kids and parents in a room isn’t giving them real family time (and don’t even get me started about McDonald’s).
  7. Family restrooms with changing tables and toddler potty’s. EVERYWHERE. And not just one.
  8. A company that does a buy one donate one to a kid in foster care. I can’t figure out what we would sell yet. But there are a lot of companies that help out other countries what about kids in our own country?!?!
  9. 24/7 daycare The daycare director where all my kids have gone was telling me about how she would love to open a 24/7 daycare for parents who have night shifts.
  10. Childcare in hotels I would love if more places did this. Especially for single parents traveling alone.

Anyone have anymore?

Weekly update December 17

  1. I shattered the screen to my phone getting out of my car. Ugh
  2. I saw Star Wars Saturday! Yay!
  3. Bubba is having horrible night terrors lately. I think it’s because he is alone in his room. Anyone have any tips?
  4. Bubba can trace his name! Yay!
  5. Bubba had his winter party at school and my mom was his room mom. I love that my parents are so involved.
  6. Court dates are never ending for Bubba but nothing seems to ever happen. His GAL finally is doing his job though so YAY. Please pray that the whatever is best for these four children is what will happen.
  7. I saw Baby Z. His parents invited me, my parents, and Bubba to a breakfast with Santa. Omg he reached out to me and it melted my heart. His parents are doing so well.
  8. Baby Zs parents asked me to be his God Mother. I melted. It was so sweet.
  9. Baby Z now walks when you hold his hands. He has grown so much!
  10. Only 4 more days of work for me!

10 favorite things to do with my children at home during the holidays

I posted my favorite Holiday traditions but here are my favorite things to do with my kids at home during the holidays.

  1. Decorate my house together. I don’t care how long it takes. Decorating the house is a family activity.
  2. Decorate ginger bread house. I love decorating gingerbread houses. I enjoy making it look pretty and eating all the candy. However, we are doing pre-put together gingerbread houses this year that the kids just decorate.
  3. Taking lots of pictures. I take pictures of everything to begin with (it’s important for me to have something to look back at when the kids have left my house). However, I go a little obsessive over Christmas. I want lots of pictures.
  4. Having matching outfits/pajamas. Whether it’s to go see Santa or just sit around the house, my kids have an extreme amount of holiday outfits.
  5. Have the elves in the shelf visit us. However, we have pretty lazy elves on the shelf, they mostly just move to different spots in our house and possibly do a couple funny things. The elves do go all out for the elf on the shelf breakfast . My parents come over and we eat a big breakfast.
  6. Watch Christmas movies with popcorn and hot chocolate. This is always a fun time and it’s good family time.
  7. Drinking hot chocolate. Drinking hot chocolate is an activity alone in my house. We have marshmallows, sprinkles, whip cream, etc.
  8. Read stories together. We love to read together every night. However, there is something special about reading those special Christmas books.
  9. Play in the snow. I love the first snow and I love to go out with my kids and see their joy.
  10. Making Christmas cookies. We love baking and eating Christmas cookies. Sometimes we have a baking party. But other time we just make a mess in the kitchen and have fun.

10 Ways to Make the Holidays Special for Your Foster Child’s Biological Parents

  1. Be understanding. This is a very hard time for them. I can’t imagine how they feel during this time. I try to remember that when they complain more or text me constantly.
  2. Include them. If you can invite them to some part of your holiday tradition that is great! If not maybe you can send a video.
  3. Try not to interfere with the visits. You are allowed to see your family as well for holidays but try to make sure your foster children can spend time with there’s as well.
  4. Share lots of pictures. I sent Baby Zs parents picture in a “My first …” onesie for every holiday. I sent pictures to both kids parents of our Halloween costumes, our thanksgiving dinner, getting our Christmas tree, taking pictures with Santa, etc.
  5. Send the kids in holiday outfits to visits. Parents love to see kids dressed up and then they are able to take their own family pictures.
  6. Make them special presents. For thanksgiving we made them pumpkins with little turkeys on them and for Christmas we made reindeer pictures that they can hang up in their house for every Christmas.
  7. Have the child make something for other family members as well. It’s not only the parents that are missing them this holiday season.
  8. Ask them about their traditions. And try to include those traditions as much as possible.
  9. Ask them what they plan to get the child. I have had a couple instances where we get the children the same thing. If you do communicate with the parents somehow you might want to ask them ahead of time.
  10. Treat their child special. The best thing you can do for the parent is to give their child a good holiday.

10 Ways to make the holidays special for your foster child

  1. Share your traditions. Tell them about what your family does for the holidays (or what traditions you loved as a kid). Include them in your traditions.
  2. Ask them about their traditions. Is there a food they liked? Or things they did? And try to figure out what Santa does at their house.
  3. Make new traditions. See if there is anything they have always wanted to do.
  4. Decorate your house. Not only should you decorate your house but you should have them help. Maybe they can make something or they can help you pick something out. This year all my decorations were things the boys could play with.
  5. Buy them special trinkets. At my house we all have stockings with our names on it so I make sure foster children have them as well. I also buy them special ornaments as well as a family ornament with all our names and years.
  6. Take lots of pictures. These will help you remember your holiday together. But they are also a special memory for your children.
  7. Read books. Books are magically. They make children excited and they can teach them what to expect.
  8. Make art work. I love holiday art work. You can make things to decorate your house with and keepsakes for both of you.
  9. Keep it small. Last year I broke my mom’s heart into a million pieces when I told her I wouldn’t be going to their house for Christmas morning because I knew Diva would be overwhelmed and I wanted to limit her time in a crowded space. It ended up working out really well but it was a hard thing for my mom to accept.
  10. Try not to have too high of expectations. If the child is older the holidays could be a huge trigger for them. Try to play it by ear andhave them tell you what they are comfortable with.

Weekly update December 10

  1. Baby Z was reunited with his family! I am so happy for them that it’s hard to even be sad. But my house is very quiet since he left. His parents are sending me lots of adorable pictures which is helping the sadness. I feel like I should be more sad but honestly I’m so happy for them it’s hard to be too sad for myself. This is what I went into foster care for and it finally happened.
  2. I bought baby Z and his family Christmas presents. I had been waiting for the outcome of court to buy him presents. Just because he went home doesn’t mean I won’t give them gifts though. I got the family matching stockings with their names on it, a Santa plate with Zs name on it, and an ornament. I also got Z a fun little toy for 12+. They have a lot of things for him now so I wanted to get something for later.
  3. Bubba and I did nothing Saturday. It was awesome just to play with my little buddy all day. I think he likes having all the attention for a little bit. He is struggling having his room all to himself.
  4. Our tree now has ornaments. I had just lights because Z got into everything but now I don’t have to worry about that.
  5. Bubba decorated a ginger bread house. It was funny to watch. Only like 3 things ended up in his mouth.
  6. Bubba is officially out of pull-ups. He hasn’t worn them during the day in weeks. Now he no longer needs them for bed either. And he hasn’t had an accident in weeks. Yay!
  7. We saw Bubbas mom again. We met at a museum so they could play, it was a lot of fun. Bubba didn’t stop building the whole time.
  8. I got an early Christmas present. My parents got me a new dresser (I have had the same one since my 5th birthday) I love it and I feel grown up lol.
  9. I finally have presents for everyone. Now I just have to wrap. Ugh.
  10. Lots of court days and visits this next week. Pray for us

My 10 favorite kids friendly Christmas decorations

I love Christmas! I always have enjoyed Christmas and decorating my whole house after Thanksgiving. Having two young children though I’m trying to keep all of the Christmas decorations to things they can easily play with and enjoy.

  1. Melissa and Doug count down to Christmas I have had this since Princess was little. It is so simple and I love it.
  2. Hot wheels advent calendar I am not a fan of the chocolate advent calendars. So I try to find one that relates to what the kids like. This is Bubba’s this year. Princess has a Lego one (she gets one of those every year). Bubba got a little people one last year. There are so many cool ones out there.
  3. Felt Christmas tree I know you can make these your self. However I don’t have time for that. I also got the boys a felt snow man.
  4. Christmas window clings We decorate with window clings for every season. Bubba puts them up and then moves them around where ever he wants.
  5. Little People Nativity Bubba loves this. It wouldn’t be Christmas without a nativity and here is one that I don’t mind the kids touching and playing with.
  6. Christmas Train Set This year I decided that every little boy needs a train to go around their Christmas tree.
  7. Christmas boxes What do kids love more than playing in boxes? Absolutely nothing. And now I have something to put next to my door.
  8. Christmas light projector As a single mom I don’t have time to hang lights. This makes my house look pretty and it only takes a couple minutes to put together.
  9. Live tree for outside I can’t have a live tree inside the house because of my allergies. So the kids and I got one outside and burlap ornaments to decorate. It’s nice to have something that smells like Christmas but isn’t making a mess in my house.
  10. Step2 My First Christmas Tree I don’t have this because they are sold out. But I want this for this boys. Maybe next year.

10 supportive things foster parents do

Yesterday I posted about the things foster parents say in Facebook groups that piss me off. However, there is a lot they do that I love.

  1. Give supportive advice. Whether it is about parenting or doing hair there are some people who are always supportive.
  2. Kindly disagree with you. We all aren’t going to agree but I appreciate it when people do it kindly instead of like an asshole.
  3. Offer to share clothing/supplies. Having a new placement is hard. Even though you tried to be prepared you can’t have everything you could possibly need in every situation. I love when others are willing to help each other out.
  4. Share discounts. Some people get upset that we are always looking for discounts on experiences and trips: however, a small discount could be the reason I could take my family to Disney world, so please share that stuff.
  5. Ask for advice from former foster youth. They are the experts. When you want to do know how a situation will effect your foster children or how you should handle something they are the ones to ask.
  6. Refer you to research/laws. I love when people include specific details/links so that i know what the law is or what research says is best practice.
  7. Refer you to professionals. Just because we have experience doesn’t mean we know the answers. Therapists, doctors, and social workers are always they people to ask.
  8. Send prayers. Sometimes there is nothing you can do but pray.
  9. Suggest books. Especially when it comes to parenting traumatized children.!
  10. Celebrate the small victories. Your foster kid didn’t swear at thanksgiving dinner? Yay! Your foster kid sat the whole time for time out and didn’t kick you? Yay! Your foster child let you brush their hair? Yay?

10 things other foster parents say that piss me off

I am part of a lot of country wide foster parent group (with thousands of members) and some of the things people say on there make me wonder if people foster for the right reasons. I try to assume positive attention but sometimes it’s hard.

  1. They ignore what former foster youth have to say. This one makes me so furious. If they are saying something is offensive believe it.
  2. They talk bad about the biological parents. No just no! You don’t know what they have been through so save the judgement. Your role is to take care of the kids not judge the biological parents.
  3. They complain that they can’t hit foster children. If the only form of discipline you can think of is to hit a child then you shouldn’t be a parent to begin with:
  4. The celebrate termination of rights. I understand that this child has probably been with you a while and you want to adopt them. Go right ahead and celebrate the adoption. But the termination is a sad moment. A parents heart is breaking and we should never celebrate the breaking apart of a family even if it means your family gains a member.
  5. They call foster children brats. Nope!!! No child is brat. They just haven’t been properly taught.
  6. They act superior to the biological parents. You have no idea what their childhood was like or even their adult life. Don’t judge.
  7. They complain about visits on holidays . I get it. However the kids want to see their family on holidays too. Just have the caseworker pick up the kids where ever you were planning on being.
  8. They act like there bond is stronger then the biological parents bond. You both have a bond and there should be no comparison. Even if you have had he child since birth their parents have a special bond through dna and that should be nurtured.
  9. They complain about having to do extra for the parents. I get that you don’t want to go above and beyond constantly (I don’t either). But if it means your foster child will be happy, then do it.
  10. They don’t support other foster parents. I know I just complained about other foster parents. Though I hate when they say this I don’t yell or insult them. I try to educate and help them grow. We should all be there for each other.