Monday, April 30, 2018

April 18 Round Up

Not yet slowed down!
Took part in the A-Z Blog Challenge
Panto meeting
Fosterling's birthday - cinema and all-you-can-eat buffet restaurant
Went to Cliveden to take part in a murder mystery treasure hunt but poor fosterling was ill within minutes of getting there :(
Met Jo at Stabucks for a catch up. When I chat to her I miss working with her at the doctors surgery - then I remember why I chose to leave!
Some foster care training sessions
We attended a memorial football match at Bracknell Town FC
Jeff went for his annual prostrate test ....... just a blood test in case you were crossing your legs ;)
Ella had an appointment at the National Epilepsy Society, I took a half day as we felt we needed to be there. Just as well we did, took 2 hours! But we learnt a lot
Ella has finally been started on iron supplements from the GP - bearing in mind it was apparently first picked up last summer that she was anaemic. More about that in another post.
Been talking to social care to see if we can get mum a stair gate. Since that last fall it's only a matter of time before she does herself serious injury. Interestingly, when I was going through the questionnaire with the department, it reminded me just how capable mum is - still driving, active social life, and makes her own home cooked meals
Robert and Jane were in Bracknell for a couple of days, so lovely to catch up with my little bruv and his family
Have been clearing out the garage - how did we collect so much crap! But on a positive it meant I could finally store shoes out there and my studio is nearly a studio again
Jeff has been decorating like mad, and it shows. I'll just keep adding jobs to the list until he notices it's not getting any shorter :)
Joy and I got together with Anna for a Sunday afternoon - it was work based, but still nice. And I finally baked again! It's been so long.
Had 2 people from the behaviour intensive support team visit
Have seen Ella a more this month than for a long time. We've provided her with a calendar and keeping the visits short but so far so good. We even stayed long enough for a cup of tea. Might sound like not much, but trust me, it's huge. She's still on edge and having behaviour issues, but it's nowhere near the meltdown she had at Christmas
Joe and Kerrie moved into their own home. No more renting - they've joined the mortgaged rest of us. Their house looks lovely, cannot wait to visit!
And numerous foster meetings
Date 'night' with the old man


Sunday, April 29, 2018

Fostering 'Z' ..... A - Z Blog Challenge




As Jeff and I have been foster carers for 3 years this month it seemed the right time to have Fostering as a topic for the A-Z. We're still new enough that we're not jaded yet, but have had a pretty bumpy ride, so fairly realistic in what fostering is really about.

Further information at The Fostering Network



Z IS FOR:
Here we go, another difficult one. I really need to pick an easier topic! The only thing I can think of is  .....Zzzzzz - foster care can be exhausting. If you're the sort of individual that needs 8 hours sleep a night, and then you have a child that thinks 5am is a lay in, it can be a shock to the system. Our first placement was like that - within 3 days we were down the shops buying blackout blinds :)

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Fostering 'Y' ..... A - Z Blog Challenge




As Jeff and I have been foster carers for 3 years this month it seemed the right time to have Fostering as a topic for the A-Z. We're still new enough that we're not jaded yet, but have had a pretty bumpy ride, so fairly realistic in what fostering is really about.

Further information at The Fostering Network



Y IS FOR:
Being able to say YES and NO - This is in relation to the demands made to you. There is a national shortage of foster carers, so the chances are that you'll get calls late at night or at weekends. Jeff and I have learned to never say yes straight away. My go-to response is 'let me talk to Jeff and I'll get back to you in the next half-hour'. This just gives a little breathing space because you want to say yes to help the child and the department. But it needs to be right for you. So a little time to think, ask for more information, is essential to ensure that it is the right placement - a good fit - it helps no-one to say yes at speed. It is okay to say no.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Fostering 'X' ..... A - Z Blog Challenge




As Jeff and I have been foster carers for 3 years this month it seemed the right time to have Fostering as a topic for the A-Z. We're still new enough that we're not jaded yet, but have had a pretty bumpy ride, so fairly realistic in what fostering is really about.

Further information at The Fostering Network



X IS FOR:
eXtreme Behaviour - Be prepared for anything. Don't think that fostering lurches from one incident to the next, but it could. We have had children that have stayed without incident. We have had children wet their bed for months. Or be brought home regularly by the police. Or try and grow cannabis in their bedroom. My best friend once said to me she doesn't know how we do it. I suppose for us we didn't have an easy parenthood - SEN, adoption, ADHD, cannabis, prison. So for us, we've been there and done that. And we know our limitations, behaviour that we cannot understand / support. It's different for all foster carers, we all have different things that press our buttons. And you might be surprised at how much you can cope with when you're invested in a child.
Xenophobia - Is a fear and distrust of that which is perceived to be foreign or strange, a prejudice / dislike against people from other countries. As a foster carer you can be asked to care for local children with a different ethnic background, or children coming from abroad, such as asylum seekers and refugees. If you have a strong opinion regarding others then you would need to seriously consider your personal values against the requirements of foster carer.
Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Fostering 'W' .... A - Z Blog Challenge


As Jeff and I have been foster carers for 3 years this month it seemed the right time to have Fostering as a topic for the A-Z. We're still new enough that we're not jaded yet, but have had a pretty bumpy ride, so fairly realistic in what fostering is really about.

Further information at The Fostering Network




W is for ....
Wages is the best I can do for W. But I don't really think of it as a wage. The majority of what we receive is an allowance. It is based on the age of the child and covers all the expenses involved with children - from clothes to food to utilities to birthdays. And then a small - and I mean small - salary is added on top for you. We have always said we foster because we want to make a difference, no matter how small. If we ever start looking at fostering from a financial point before a caring role, that's when we stop.
Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Fostering 'V' ..... A - Z Blog Challenge




As Jeff and I have been foster carers for 3 years this month it seemed the right time to have Fostering as a topic for the A-Z. We're still new enough that we're not jaded yet, but have had a pretty bumpy ride, so fairly realistic in what fostering is really about.

Further information at The Fostering Network



V IS FOR:
Nope - I've got nothing! Best I can think of it's it's a VERY important role :)
Monday, April 23, 2018

Fostering 'U' ..... A - Z Blog Challenge




As Jeff and I have been foster carers for 3 years this month it seemed the right time to have Fostering as a topic for the A-Z. We're still new enough that we're not jaded yet, but have had a pretty bumpy ride, so fairly realistic in what fostering is really about.

Further information at The Fostering Network




U IS FOR:

Unannounced Visits - Each year your agency will do an unannounced visit. If you're like us it can take several visits before they find us home - that's not a problem.....refusing to answer the door would be a problem though. It's a quick check of the foster children's rooms, they don't look in any rooms that the foster children do not access, i.e. other bedrooms. They're not looking to see if the room is spotless or that the ironing is up to date, it's more of a 'does he still have a room and what state is it in'. Of course, they do also make allowances for the fact that teenage bedrooms aren't renowned for being the cleanest and tidiest :)