Friday, May 6, 2011

Safe Families

I haven't posted in a while because we have been super busy.  On Good Friday, we had some bad tornadoes strike the St. Louis area.  We were at home, and I saw the sky turn green and went down to our basement to wait it out.  Here is a video from CNN about the damage at our airport:

There was a lot of damage done to several residential areas, although it was not as devastating as what happened in Tuscaloosa.  James and I are part of Safe Families for Children.  This is a voluntary program for families in crisis, and we just signed up to be a "Safe Family" a few weeks ago.  Basically what happens is you get a call from a social worker who has been working with a family who needs help.  Maybe mom is about to have surgery, and she doesn't have anyone to care for his child.  Maybe mom is about to be incarcerated and needs someone to care for her children for an extended period of time.  Maybe the family is on the verge of homelessness and they need to get their kids in a home where they will be fed and cared for.  The child comes to stay with you, the "safe family" until their situation at home improves.  The day after Easter, I got a call from a social worker wanting to know if we could take two young brothers for one week.  Their family had lost their electricity due to the tornadoes and they lost all their food. They were out of food stamps and it was going to take about a week before they could get anymore. We said yes. And then the adventure began.

We had a super busy week making sure no one was biting, hitting, marking on the wall, traumatizing the dogs, eating food out of the garbage, drinking dirty bath water, eating their toothpaste, punching the TV, fighting, jumping on the bed, playing with the neighbor's mailbox, on and on.  Whew.  The walls in stairway need to be repainted thanks to little hot wheels and dinosaurs running all over them.  We gave these boys Cheetos once, and we made them eat them in the kitchen at the table.  Well, I have found Cheetos crumbs all over my house.  By the front door, on the stairway, in the living room.  Resolve will get smashed in Play Dough out of your carpets, by the way.  The mini blinds in the nursery were a casualty of the week.  The little fella, who was two, was quite proud of his handiwork.  He came and got me and showed me what he had done to our blinds.  I need to find something that is toddler-proof to replace them.

Thanks to everyone who provided clothes, toys, diapers, and other items for the boys.  You helped meet a very practical need for us and for their family.

Redeeming moment of the week:  James and I had been praying together with the boys before dinner.  It was a bit of a battle getting them to do it, and it seemed like it was kinda a new concept for them. I was not so good about doing it if James' wasn't home.  Which is bad of me, I know, but I was a little scared to take my eyes off these little firecrackers.  The last day they were with us, in the middle of lunch - the little fella spontaneously bowed his head, closed his eyes, clasped his hands and began to jabber a little prayer for his family.  I heard him name all of his family members.  It was precious.  Then the older one asked me if I would pray with them both, so I did.

Lesson of the week:  Dogs are way cleaner and more obedient than children :-)

1 comment:

  1. Stephanie - this is truly amazing and I am so thankful that you and James could provide for these little boys an impact that will be lifelong.
    Much love,