Thursday, September 24, 2009

A coffee break with Kelly

Today I'm excited to present our first in a regular "coffee break" feature we'll be having from time to time where we chat with different folks involved in foster care and adoption in Iowa.

To kick it off, today we have a coffee break with Kelly Scheidler. Kelly is a foster and adoptive parent in the lovely southeast part of Iowa and has graciously agreed to be my guinea pig.
Thanks Kelly! :)

To start, tell us a little bit about your family.
We have eight kids right now, ages 10 months to 17. Two are biological, three are adopted and three are in foster care.

What's the most bizarre question you've ever gotten about foster care?
To me, the most bizzare question is "Why would you want to take in someone else's problem children?" I think that's insane when people ask that because children are in foster care not because they have done something wrong, but because of their parents' decisions.

Any favorite foster care stories?

It's really great to be thanked by a birth family for helping take care of their kids or helping them get them back. We never planned on adopting - we were just going to do foster care - but we actually had a birth mother come to us and ask us if we would reconsider that. She was willing to voluntarily relinquish her rights if we would adopt her kids. And it's a good feeling to be thanked by the teenagers we've helped. We have teens who have left our home, but still contact us to let us know how they're doing and thank us.

Do you have a foster parent superpower?
The ability to organize 10 people's schedules. I've never missed an appointment.

Seriously, never? That's impressive.

No. I have everything logged into one place. I had a paper planner once that we lost for three days, and now so I don't have a heart attack I keep everything in a Wal-Mart palm pilot and back it up faithfully.

That's a good tip. Got any other words of wisdom for those just starting foster care or thinking about it?
Expect the unexpected. Be ready to take it day by day because you don't know what's going to be thrown at you. Go with the flow.

If you liked this "coffee break," leave a little comment and let us know!


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