be big picture positive

We went to the pumpkin patch on Saturday, and we all had a good time! It’s not too often that family fun outings go really well. Last year we attempted the pumpkin patch and were disappointed when our trampoline LOVING son decided he hated the big orange bouncy thingy. Right, that was a shocker. To…

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putting the HOPE in HOPEless (adoption/foster)

You may wonder why I write this blog, why you should listen to yet another person who thinks they have an answer to helping hurting, traumatized kids. Why am I here? Because of what my daughter has come through, the great progress she has made. I try not to flag my faith here. My faith…

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detecting attachment issues (adoption/foster)

I have listed the behaviors children with attachment issues display in a post titled, signs of neglect, trauma, and attachment issues, but felt there needed to be a more extensive list and one that was more accessible. After all, that is why I’m here, because of attachment issues and to help children heal from their past,…

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when your adopted child doesn’t fit seamlessly into your life, what will you do? (adoption/foster)

To this day Dimitri’s bones ache when the winter cold settles in. As that chill cloaks him, memories of a frozen Uzbekistan scene play through his mind like a horror film. His father laying on the concrete floor of an abandoned building, drunk, and nearly dead. He’d wrapped a thread bare blanket around his sister,…

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just deal with it (feelings: part 4) – (adoption/foster)

Were you raised by a parent who told you to “just deal with it?” Were you taught to ignore your feelings or that they weren’t important? If we tell our hurting children to just deal with it without giving them a listening ear, and tools for how to handle their feelings, it won’t help your child…

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be available (feelings: part 3) – (adoption)

In part two of this series, I talked about labeling your child’s feelings so they can begin to put together what’s happening inside them, both physical feelings: hunger and sickness; and the feelings such as jealousy and disappointment. Today we are taking the next step, which is talking about those feelings. We can’t define a feeling…

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emotional balance begins with us (feelings: part 1) – (adoption/foster)

Some of you see the title of this post and scoff, “Well, that’s never going to happen, I guess there’s no hope for me.” Others see it and say, “Of course, that’s why I’m so calm.” And yet others fall in the middle, and I am one of them, or I hope I am. I…

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the magic word (adoption/foster)

What’s the magic word? Well, truth be told, there isn’t one. Sure, “please” and “thank you” are magic words that might get you what you want, but when it comes to parents trying to convince their adopted children that they will never leave, there is no magic word. Parents try to tell their children, “I…

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make this school year exceptional (adoption/foster)

This article originally appeared in Adoption Today magazine. Make This School Year Exceptional by Tracy Dee Whitt The kids have enjoyed swinging, swimming pools, sidewalk chalk, and scrumptious mud pies, but now it’s time to think about school. Some kids are excited about the new year and some are wary and worried. My daughter, Payton,…

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staying calm in the midst of a storm

Panic. Powerless. Frightened. These are a few of the reactions we can have when a major storm hits. This summer we had a vacation from somewhere down under (you can read more about it here), and part of that getaway included a tornado warning after a week of complete chaos and stress. I had never…

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