Younger Boy spent most of the day Saturday and Sunday with Mentor R.

Now he is home and he is a WRECK.  Behavioral WRECK.

This happens every time he spends time with him.  He is a mess when he returns home.  For days.

I can hardly take it.  Middle Boy warned Boarder about how bad it is.

It started five minutes after Mentor R left.  The belligerence.  The attitude.  The crazy behavior.

He stood in the pantry and SCREAMED at the top of his lungs for five minutes about not knowing what he wanted for dinner.

I don't know if I can continue to do this.  We have to figure it out.

Just yesterday morning as Younger Boy and I were leaving therapy we saw two of his biological siblings and another boy who Mom and Dad J are the guardians for.

The interaction was so interesting.

Younger Boy has matured far beyond what Older Boy has in the year and a half they have been apart.  I think healing has begun in both of them as a result of the separation.  In many ways they were both blessed by it.

As I interacted with Older Boy I wondered how I used to do it.  Just our short interaction, 15 minutes or less, exhausted me.  He was much louder than I remembered.  I haven't seen him much since he moved out of my house.  Maybe three or four times.  He's different, but the same.

Prayers for Younger Boy's biological siblings and Mom and Dad J.
Things have just been busy and crazy and mostly good around our house.

Here are a few highlights for everyone (things that probably would have gotten their own post):

Younger Boy

  1. Struggling with spaciness.  His therapist thinks he just has a "bag of tricks" from which he draws in order to keep himself in a victim role.  We are going to work on it.
  2. Two baseball games were rained out and they played one which his team won 8 - 3.
  3. He spent a fun-filled week with Southern Belle and her dad.  They jumped on trampolines, swam at a water park and went to a movie.  He had a blast.
  4. K and J took him as part of their family to a family picnic and also a meet and greet for one of the College World Series teams.  Again, he had a blast.

Middle Boy

  1. Had a meltdown one night and removed everything from him room and told me that I could have it all, because he isn't going to rely on me anymore and he would just start paying for things himself.
  2. Started going to church again, because house arrest allows it after four weeks.  He has been there three times now.
  3. Celebrated his 16th birthday.
  4. He is starting to trust me...a little bit.  Yesterday he even admitted that he thought I was wrong about him being anxious and then realized I was right.
  5. Interviewed for a JOB and will find out by the end of the week if he got it. 
  6. Showed AMAZING empathy when his mentor's mother-in-law passed away.  I was super proud of him.


  1. Starting to work full-time during the day.
  2. Still living with us, but talking with his parents about what to do in the fall since we live really far across town from where he goes to school.
  3. Being pretty helpful, especially with Younger Boy.

Max and Sophie

  1. Max has a hereditary skin condition which if left untreated can cause complete hair loss and immune deficiencies.  He is getting special skin treatments at the vet's office every other week.
  2. Max is up to 30 15 weeks.
  3. Sophie tolerates Max, but not if he is anywhere near me.
  4. I am the pack leader for both of them and if I am home they are within inches of me....mostly tripping me if I am trying to walk.
  5. Both are "excited", but they don't know it yet that we are getting a fence for our back yard in the next couple of weeks.


  1. Sleeping a million times better since the sleep study remedies.
  2. Crazy busy at home with a list of a million things to get done.
  3. Even busier at work.  Out of the office a lot with my newer job responsibilities and trying to figure out my travel schedule for July and August so I am not gone EVERY WEEK.
  4. Working on camp "stuff".  Feeling guilty, because a lot of the activity center stuff is NOT DONE.

That's us in a nutshell right now.  Pray for life to calm down a little and for peace.

Back to daily blogging...tomorrow.

Every morning when I get to work I text each boy their "chores of the day".

If slightly more than half-hearted effort is given the tasks will take less than an hour each day.

Today is the first day neither boy finished.  Middle Boy did make an effort.  Younger Boy didn't do a single thing.

The rule is that the work needs to be done by 5PM when I return home from work.  If the chores are not done you have one day grace to finish them up and after that you lose privileges.

They are going to have a lot to do tomorrow.  Not my problem.

Tonight Younger Boy is in BIG TROUBLE with Middle Boy.

They were hanging out in Middle Boy's room and for whatever reason Younger Boy decided to try out Middle Boy's new cologne.

Try out is a loose term, because he liberally applied HALF OF THE BOTTLE to his body.  Middle Boy's room smells like a cologne FACTORY.

As soon as he came downstairs I got a headache and Middle Boy was upstairs vomiting.

Younger Boy says he didn't use it.  What?  We aren't CRAZY!!

He was FURIOUS with me when I told him he had to go shower IMMEDIATELY.

When he was finished I asked him if he had a solution to getting the smell out of the house.  First he said open all of the windows.  Nope, not viable, because it is ninety degrees outside.

His second option...he will just move out.  Ridiculous.
Younger Boy's psychiatrist is retiring.

In some ways it is a blessing, because she is so cranky.  In other ways...I don't know.

We are finally to an understanding where she will halfway listen to me and my observations.

Now we get to start over.

I have asked multiple people for recommendations.  It would be easiest to stay within the same healthcare system.

All of the recommendations are coming back that we should see the same psychiatrist Middle Boy sees.  Aargh.  He is NOT a listener.

What to do?  What to do?
This morning with Therapist D we confronted the "moms".

Each one of us...Therapist D, me, and Younger Boy "talked" to each of the "moms" about their treatment of Younger Boy.

It was interesting to listen to Younger Boy confront them.  He was a combination of angry and confused.  He also mentioned more than once that he felt sorry for them.  Not all of them, but a couple of them.

Confronting four moms.  I am proud of the work he did in therapy.

He was even smiling when we left.
Today at therapy we determined that Younger Boy thinks I am mean....almost always.

We had him compare his previous homes to mine and I still fall into the mean category.

Therapist C told him we have to work on separating the past from the present.

He had someone who locked him in a closet and made him go for DAYS without food.  He told Therapist C that it is equal when I tell him his fair share of the ice cream treats out of a box is two.

He honestly believes it.

We basically determined that I cannot ask or tell him anything that isn't neutral, because he thinks I am treating him meanly or unfairly.

Wow...we have a lot to overcome.
Court-ordered therapy is done.


We have a certificate of completion which can be sent to the courts and placed in his juvenile file. 

This is a big deal.  Not only because it has taken a LONG time to get it done, but also because Middle Boy struggles to follow things through to completion.

I am proud of this boy.  In the end he really buckled down and wrapped it up.

Super proud.
I was correct.  Younger Boy had not yet been to bed when he brought me breakfast in bed.

He is a MESS today as a result.

We have already had the discussion that while it is difficult to make good choices when you are extremely tired being nasty to others is not an option.  No one else chose to stay up all night and so no one else should be treated rudely.

We are on timeout number four.  One of them resulted in him screaming about how much I hate him and never wanted him to live with me in the first place.  This was when I told him I thought it was a good idea to wear a t-shirt in lieu of a hoodie when taking the dogs running since it is 90 degrees outside.

How foolish am I?

At 5:15AM this morning Younger Boy brought me breakfast in bed.

Two pieces of toast and ice water.

He does this when he has done something I am going to be irritated by.

I suspect he hasn't been to bed yet.

I do NOT get up at 5:15AM so it was a bit irritating to be woken up that early when I had been woken up multiple times throughout the night, likely by the same child.

We'll see how the day goes.  For both of us.
Last night I was woken up numerous times throughout the night.

It isn't like this is a new thing considering that neither boy gets a regular amount of sleep on any kind of regular schedule.

It's so frustrating to me.

Prayers we will get sleeping "figured out".
The boys are "finally" getting to decorate their rooms.

Both of them chose a sports theme.

Middle Boy went with the Minnesota Vikings and Younger Boy went with the Kansas State Wildcats.

Middle Boy's room will have three gold and one purple wall and Younger Boy's room will have three gray and one purple wall.  Both are getting a logo decal and new bedding.

They are super excited.  I just see a lot of work, but it is fun to see their excitement.

I imagine this is the first time either of them have ever been allowed to decorate their room.
Middle Boy has been on house arrest for over four weeks.

At the four week mark you can begin going to one church service per week provided you make a written request at least 48 hours in advance.

So...for the first time in a month the WHOLE family got to go to church together.

It was nice.
Younger Boy was supposed to have a baseball game today.  It was the only thing on our calendar.

It was postponed or cancelled due to rain.


Praising God for a day of rest!!
I am sad tonight.

Going to the dinner made me really sad I wasn't able to go to camp.

Camp is one of those things in my life that really "fills me up" and I am feeling kind of drained right now. head knows it was the right thing.  Still waiting on my heart.
Tonight was the welcome home dinner for Royal Family Kids Camp.

I am really glad I went.

I helped with the check-out process for the kiddos and then attended the dinner.

There was a celebration of 10 years of RFKC here.  Lots of fun memories and tributes.

Good to see all of my camp friends.

Praises for another good year of camp.
We were going to start meeting with Middle Boy's new old therapist again tonight.

Medicaid in our state is complicated though.  We have to "release" our current therapist before we can start with a new one or the new one may never get authorized.

So...therapy for tonight is cancelled since we are still seeing Therpist L until Monday.

I wish it wasn't so completely complicated and we could just do therapy.

Prayers one day the system won't be so complicated and people can just get the services they need.
Middle Boy suffers from anxiety which results in vomiting.

However, he would tell you that this isn't his problem and nothing needs to be done about it.

I am almost to the point where I can tell when the next day will result in vomiting.  Every now and then he catches me off guard, but I am close.

Today he is anxious again.  This time I am not certain why.  I'm not sure he is.

Prayers we can work through the anxiety.
Max is becoming quite a bully with Sophie.  He is doubling in size every three to four days and is easily more than twice her size now.

She is a scrapper though.

His new favorite things to do are to take her leash in his mouth and drag her when walking and to put her dog tag in his mouth and pull her around.  When he does these things there isn't much she can do.

All other times...she can take him.
Today Younger Boy's bio mom posted this on her Facebook page...

I just want to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my "Younger Boy".  My gorgeous young man who is 13 today!!  He has brought so much love and happiness into my life and the many lives around him.  He is very special and he means the world to me.  I hope he has the most blessed and wonderful day.  HAPPY 13TH BIRTHDAY "YOUNGER BOY"!!!!  Mommy loves you with all her heart and soul and always will!!!!!!!

I didn't show this to him.  He would have been a mess.  In some ways it makes me happy that she still loves him, but in others it makes me ANGRY.  She did NOTHING to protect him.  She had multiple chances to get him back and reunify and didn't.  My heart goes out to her, because she doesn't know what a funny, thoughtful caring kiddo he is.

Today is Younger Boy's thirteenth birthday.

He requested a homemade meal of grilled pork chops, corn on the cob, steak fries, and ice cream cake.

He got three items off of his list and some cash from his grandparents.

He got an art kit from Boarder, video game from Middle Boy and a new bike from me.

I had wrapped a pack of gum, because it was on the list.  Then I asked him to go out to the garage to get something.  That was where his bike was.  He came in so excited, but still unsure if the bike was his.

For the rest of the evening he sped up and down the street on his new bike.  Having a blast!!
When this week is finished our family will have participated in SEVEN HOURS of therapy.

Younger Boy and I had two hours together.

Middle Boy and I had two hours together and Middle Boy had three individual hours.

Middle Boy's therapist is working to get him through her program before Medicaid drops her as a therapist on June 10th.  That is accounting for some of the craziness. 

We have also switched his therapist so he is started with the new one this week as well.

This morning during therapy we let Younger Boy decide what his summer bedtime should be.  He picked 9PM and we convinced him of 10PM.

We reminded him that this means take your meds at 9:30PM and be in your bed with the lights off at 10PM.  He agreed.

I am so happy to say that tonight he did that.  He was actually in bed at 9:20PM and asleep before I went to check if he needed the last 50mg of his sleep med. to go.  The other is going to be WAY TOUGHER!!
Tonight when I got home from work we were all sitting around chatting.  Boarder said, "Younger Boy, don't you have something you want to tell your mom?"

He completely ignored the statement.

Later at dinner we were doing our "best and worst".  Afterward Boarder again said, "Younger Boy, don't you have something you want to tell your mom?"

Younger Boy started to cry.  He told me he wanted me to know that he hadn't been throwing up, but that he was trying to get out of therapy.  He knew he was not going to be able to stay awake and he knew it was going to have consequences.

He also went on to tell me that he has been spitting his sleeping meds out in the sink when he goes to take a shower and that is why he told Therapist C they are not working.

He was SOBBING by the time he was done talking.

I thanked him for telling me the truth and reminded him it is important to be truthful and trustworthy.

Praises that we may have turned a corner.
Today I made an appointment with the house arrest people for Middle Boy to mow the lawn.

Apparently it doesn't fit into his schedule...whatever that is.

He is irritated with me, because he would rather do it tomorrow.  Apparently he can't see that it is so long that it is seeding on the top.

I finally "convinced" him that he WOULD do it today, because I was not going to change the appointment.

After that he was glad to be outside...even if it did involve mowing the lawn.

Plus...the lawn looks WAY BETTER now.
Younger Boy slept the majority of the way through both hours of therapy.  Therapist C was really on his case about it.  She told him he has one more chance and then she will change his therapy time.

Therapist D had an MSE scheduled for him this morning.  MSE is a mental status exam that they have to do in order for him to continue therapy.

He "answered" a few of the questions.

What makes you sad?  "When my friend's families are sick."

What makes you happy?  "When I am by myself or when I am with other people."

What makes you scared?  "When people die."

There is no way he is going to remember these answers.  Therapist D and I just looked at each other trying not to burst out laughing and mouthing "what on earth?" the entire time.

Clearly he was not with it.

We have been talking about personal hygiene now for MONTHS with him.  He REFUSES to shower.  Today we decided I will no longer remind him.  He is almost thirteen years old and he knows he is supposed to shower.  Last week he went six days without showering.  His therapists said he will eventually when people start to tell him he smells and that peer pressure will work wonders.

These are basic daily skills...sleeping and showering.  They are getting worse and not better and it sucks!!
At 5AM Younger Boy woke me up to tell me he was vomiting and probably wouldn't be able to go to therapy.

I told him we couldn't cancel at this late time.

I asked him to go back to bed and told him I would wake him when it was time to get up.

I am relatively certain he is not vomiting, but I am giving him the benefit of the doubt.

Last Tuesday morning at therapy Younger Boy gave his therapists his word that he would be in bed by 10PM for seven days straight and if it wasn't working out we would adjust it.

As of tonight he has not done it ONCE.

Tonight before heading to bed I reminded him that he is not allowed to sleep during therapy tomorrow and that he was going to be held accountable for not keeping his word.

He assured me he would be awake for the duration of therapy.

Wednesday is Younger Boy's birthday. 

He spent virtually all day today creating his birthday list.

It is four typed pages.  It is categorized with two stars for the things he really wants, one start for things he wants and nothing for things he just sort of wants.  It is also broken out by who he would like to receive the individual gifts from.  Somehow I ended up with the pricey list.

I have already decided what I am getting him for his birthday and it didn't make any lists.

I had to explain he will not be receiving anywhere near close to everything on the lists.  I kind of think he thought he was going to.

Prayers he will have a great birthday this year.
The finish line for therapy is SO CLOSE for Middle Boy we can almost see it.

I am super proud of the way he has buckled down in the last month and just gotten done what he needed to do.

After today there are three more sessions.  He has passed step three individually and will present it at group on Wednesday.  Then two days for step four and DONE.

We can see the tape.

Prayers he will not run out of motivation before he gets there.
For the past five summers I have gone to RFKC.  In some ways it is the reason I am the mama to Middle Boy and Younger Boy.

This summer due to all of the "excitement" at home I am not able to go.  It makes me sad.  I know in my head that I need to stay home, but my heart is pretty far from being on board with it.

I have been in charge of camper registration all spring so this morning I am helping check in all of those kiddos.

In some ways it will be nice to see all of these people I have been chatting with on the phone for years now, but have never actually met in person.  It will also give me a chance to see all of the kiddos and say hello.

The first two there were twins, A and G.  I have been talking to their grandma regularly and she has been on my heart.  It was so good to get to chat with her and see the girls.

There are some kiddos who I love dearly.  D, who is now in a forever home.  He has changed dramatically over the last year.  Still adorable and charming....and angry.

The little cute.

A, the new boy who reminded me of a  used car salesman.  Smooth talking all of the adults.

The boys who were back were so excited they could hardly stand it.  Their check-in room was CHAOS.  The girls check-in room was filled with girls coloring and stringing beads and playing card games.  It was not apparent if there was an organized or unorganized activity going on in the boy's room.

How I wish I was going to camp.

I will be praying for you all as you ride to camp...each one by name.
Sophie and I went for a walk this evening.

We have a pond and waterfall across the street from our home and there are two geese and four ducks who reside there.

Within the last couple of weeks there have also been five baby geese and I wanted to see them.

Sophie wanted to see them too.  It was just a different way than I did.  She wanted to see them, but she wanted to use her loudest barking voice to let them know she was on her way.

I picked her up and she was so excited she was shaking.  She is lucky I picked her up, because she was quite close to getting chased by the ANGRY daddy goose.

They are so adorable.  They are out walking all of the time.

Maybe next time I will take Max.  I think he would be oblivious to them.  Maybe I will even go by myself.
Middle Boy is doing everything is his power today to pick a fight with me.


I had about had it with him and his stinky attitude.

I am WELL AWARE he cannot leave the house.  WELL AWARE.

Complaining about it and being belligerent...not helpful...not one bit.

I think he is truly working to see what he needs to do to cause himself to leave or to make me prove he is going to be here forever.

This would be so much easier if he would simply trust me.
Younger Boy had his first baseball game today.

It was misting outside and was a little bit cold.

He was mad at Max, because he had put his baseball pants on the floor last night and at some point Max peed all over the crotch of them making it look like he had wet his pants.  It had dried in a "nice" yellow stain.

He pitched the first three innings and struck a few kids out.  He got on base once by hitting and once with a walk.

His team lost by one run.

It was a nice morning...even if it was a little cold.  It is fun to watch him play something he loves!