I think we’re inching closer towards adoption, yet at times it doesn’t feel like it. We just found out that some paperwork got pushed back in the case worker’s office, and now the entire process has been delayed a couple of months. I admit that for me waiting for such an important event doesn’t come naturally, especially when it keeps being pushed out. But you know how it goes; you feel like kicking and squalling about it until you surrender, then all at once, you know it’s all for a reason!
Yes, it’s out of our hands and in the Lord’s. We are merely waiting until the adoption worker will one day decide to finish some paperwork; then things should fall into place relatively fast after that. Until then, we’ll praise God that He knows best and will continue gradually transitioning their names. Yes, they are each keeping one of their names and changing the other. Both foster children will have a name from each set of parents. We’ll save those details until it’s all been finalized!
In the meantime, we’ll keep loving, cuddling, rocking, and telling stories just as if they were our own little ones.
For Julia and Austin, there is no difference for them which of their younger siblings they enjoy the most. They are thrilled to have each of them as a part of their family. Recently, I watched 20-month-old Jesse discover seven-year-old Julia asleep on the couch. As he talked to her, it was clear that he could not understand why she didn’t respond with her usual smile, giving him all the attention he wanted. After a bit, Jesse got her to wake up. Moments later, my heart melted as Jesse came walking into the kitchen, leading Julia by her hand, just like Julia has done so many times for Jesse when he was waking from his nap. He wanted Julia to get some cuddles from Mama to help her wake up.
As I think back three years ago when we first started talking of taking foster classes, we had no idea what all this would entail — especially on the emotional aspect. But then we also had no idea how very rewarding it could be adding darlings to our home to be a forever part of our lives, just like the ones who were born into our family. It is a deep joy and blessing beyond any description that I could ever spell out.
I know that for many who have fostered, their connection with “their” darlings was abruptly ended when the birth parents were able to take the children back. Even though that is really what fostering is all about, the severing of heartstrings is excruciating. No doubt every act of unselfish love will be blessed, no matter what. I can never imagine what it must be like for the birth parents who are not able to care for their little ones. It’s like I told Rayni and Jesse’s birth mom, “You have tough love to sign these children over voluntarily.” Undoubtedly, it was one of the most challenging things she has ever gone through, yet she loved her little ones enough to do what she felt was best for them. Her tender, yet unwavering love for her children will always remain etched in my mind.
I don’t know where you are going and how your childhood was, but we do care. Those delicate years leave traces on one’s heart, whether we remember them or not. Please know that regardless what your story may be, it does matter to us, and we are praying for you. If you ever get an urge to write, share your story, whatever sort it may be or to request prayer, please feel free to do so.
Now for another family favorite on these toasty Summer days. It’s too hot to have the oven running unless it’s a dire need, so we are skimping on baked goods. If we do have bars, it’s Julia’s no-bake energy bites. I know I’ve run these before, yet I have to rerun it as it is something we use constantly in this hot weather. Daniel says they are plenty sweet without the chocolate chips. With me being a chocolate lover, I think it makes the treats double delicious! Do what you like to strike your own fancy. Of course, butterscotch or salted caramel chips could be used instead in these monster cookie energy bites!
MONSTER COOKIE ENERGY BITES
1 cup peanut butter (I use sugar-free)
1/2 cup honey
3 tablespoon maple syrup
2 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups quick oats
4 tablespoon wheat germ, optional
2/3 cup flax seeds, optional
2 tablespoons chia seeds, optional
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup M&M’s (sometimes I use raisins instead)
In a medium saucepan, melt together first four ingredients over medium heat, then add dry ingredients. Roll into balls. Refrigerate or freeze. This will yield two dozen cookies.
Gloria Yoder is an Amish mom, writer, and homemaker in rural Illinois. The Yoders travel primarily by horse-drawn buggy and live next to the settlement’s one-room school-house. Readers can write to Gloria at 10510 E. 350th Ave., Flat Rock, IL 62427