I realized the other day that it's been awhile since we've both been on here. I got a sweet email from Dad today..very simple: "Hey girls, I really enjoy reading your blog. Don't give up on it....Love you, Dad." Although Instagram has become my "go to" source for quick updates of way too many people/friends, his was a sweet little reminder of how stories need to be told along with pictures sometimes. So for those of our friends that don't know...Sam and I became official Foster Care Parents in December! We were so excited to make it part of our Christmas card this year.
It may look like a "pregnancy" announcement at first glance, but it's not. We trust that God has a reason that is not the case for us right now and I hope to share more of that struggle in the posts to come. But in many ways over the last year preparing for this new journey to care for kids that aren't our "own" has felt a little like what I'd imagine a "pregnancy" to feel like: the anticipation, the preparation, etc.
Sam and I chose to get licensed through a local Christian agency called "Lifeline" and we cannot say enough good things about them. The classes took 10 weeks, meeting once a week for 3-4 hours. There were many weeks that I was wondering what the heck we were doing there. Even in the midst of a lot of mixed emotions, I felt the Lord nudging us to complete the classes, and I'm so thankful for that. Fast forward through two home inspections in the summer, multiple interviews with our sweet caseworker, fingerprints (they came back clear, whew!)background checks, and a pile of paperwork, our official license came through the day I drove home for the Christmas holidays....I felt so relieved that a year long goal had finally been reached!
A very special thanks to Lauren Tuggle, with jlaurenphotography for taking these photos.
As a designer, one of the things I've always looked forward to when it comes to "babies" is the nursery. Yet, I was a little hesitant at first to really put a lot of effort into it because it wasn't the nursery for "our" first baby, like I'd always imagined it woud be. Technically all we needed to pass our home inspection was a crib and an "evacuation plan." (Love that, especially since most of the kids we will keep will be too young to read:) But, in pure "Whitney" fashion, it didn't take me long to start gathering ideas, sketching up the room, and scouring town to find the best deals possible to make the nursery into a room we would love to be in, and a place of genuine rest for the kiddos we'd eventually take care of.
After several months, lots of trips all over Birmingham, and many helping hands (thank you hubby), we were able to complete the nursery for our final home study (evacuation plan and all). I cannot thank my parents and in-laws enough for their help putting this room together, as well as the dear friends who've donated toys, and clothes. I love thinking about the hours spent in this room, praying for the little hands and hearts that would occupy it.
The Foster care Nursery:
My $100 craigslist find, repainted, new hardware.
Mine and/or Allie's baby shoes
My Dad's rocking chair
A sweet anonymous friend had these curtains made for me:)
Set of 3 animal prints-a $15 thrift store find!
I know this room won't stay this clean, but I sure like it when it is! Friends, we'd love your prayers as we have already begun keeping little kiddos on the weekend and for short-term care! We've had soo much fun already! Man is it exhausting though! More stories to come!