Monday, April 30, 2012

Summer Camp For Special Needs Foster Kids

     Boo Boo Bear, my seven year old foster son, is as cute as a little boy could be.  He has big brown eyes, thick curly hair, the chubbiest chub cheeks you've ever seen, a gruff little voice that makes his lisp absolutely adorable, an incredible sense of humor and witt, and has been diagnosed as special needs.  I mentioned before in my post  "Boo Boo Bear, My Special Needs Foster Child", some of the behavior issues he struggles with.  He suffers from PTSD, Anxiety, Compulsive, Oppositional Defiancy Disorder ODD and ADD issues.  Because of this, he exhibits all the related behaviors you'd expect.  Unfortunately, these aren't all his struggles.  He also has some significant bowel and skin issues, both of which have landed him in the hospital numerous times.  Boo Boo Bear is one adorable and complicatedly difficult lil' nugget.

     Because of his disorders, Boo Boo Bear can feel very lonely and excluded.  He often misses out on much of the "regular" kind of kid stuff like sports, over nights with friends, and even just typical neighborhood play.  Summer time can be excruciating for a lonely kid.  Throw a few special needs on top of that and POW BAM BOOM, you've got an explosive situation and one miserable kiddo.

     Thankfully, and through two years of seeking, I've found a summer camp that works with special needs foster children who are just like Boo Boo Bear.  This is a week long, you heard me right, a WEEK LONG, children's camp, that has a therapeutic staff.  I had to apply for Boo Boo Bear, which was an easy process.  I'm putting this link: Royal Family Kid's Camp International Camp Search  so you can inquire for your special needs foster child too.  This is an international camp, meaning that there are hundreds of locations within the USA and several other countries.

     Now, if you're not already in complete shock that a camp like this exists, I've got another whammy for ya that should completely blow your mind, the cost of this amazing camp, are you sitting down folks, this camp is a whopping...$20!  The organization relies heavily on donation and volunteers to provide these camps at little, and in some cases, no cost to the fostering family.

     Boo Boo Bear's application is off in the mail, awaiting approval.   I'm super excited and hopeful that his application will be approved for a week of camp.  He needs this so badly.  I can only imagine what it might be like for him to experience interaction in a safe and structured play environment and to realize he's not alone, that there are thousands of other children just like him.

     I would love to hear if anyone out there has been involved with this camp or one similar.  Also, if you are aware of ANY international programs that works with kids like ours. 

Casey Everly

Thursday, April 26, 2012

April 27-April 29 I Will Be On Vacation

Hi all, I'll be gone the next couple days, enjoy your weekend!

I Think I'm Going To Try A Wordless Wednesday

     I've been reading along with other foster mom bloggers, trying to glean ideas for my blog.  One thing I've noticed is that most of them have a really clever way of getting out of blogging at lease one day a week, and in some cases the weekend. 

     I love writing every day, don't get me wrong, but I didn't realise the time commitment involved.  First, I have to decided which event or thoughts in my day to write about.  I'm OCD and ADD, so this in itself can be quite a process.  Then there's the writing part.  Whatever the finished piece is, has to reflect my personality accurately.  Sometimes what I'm trying to convey doesn't come out the same once on paper, or in my case computer.  My kids think I'm a tad bit obsessive about it, but I'm NOT, I swear!!!  It's just that, I feel strongly committed to sharing this part of my life with people JUST LIKE ME, and anyone who knows me, knows I have a heckofa lot to say! 

     One fellow blogger mom, (I'll post her site as soon as I can get my link to work) has a "Wordless Wednesday", which allows her to forgo any writing that day.  She instead, posts pictures of the kiddos and family and I would guess any pets she might have too.  I like the idea that I could have a break from writing.  This is a two fold benefit; I can dispel any notion Maiya and Boo Boo Bear has that I'm compulsive with my blogging,  I could be in and out of this thing in 15min, and they'd be none the wiser.  And, I can simply rest, ahhhhhhhh.  I'm practicing this one.

     I'm also thinking of doing a "Featured Friday", where I will write and feature a fellow foster parent blogger.  By doing so, I'll have the chance to take the time to really dig into someones blog life, his/her stories, and get a good feel for the emotions and characters behind them.  I also want to support the foster parents that take time out of their busy day, to write for OUR benefit, and I'm sure it's wonderfully therapeutic for them too.

Casey Everly

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Boo Boo Bear, My Special Needs Foster Child

    My foster "Son" , Boo Boo Bear, (not his real name) is a rambunctious seven year old, and that's putting it mildly.  He is diagnosed as a special needs child.   He has a number of social/emotional behavioral issues, and a handfull of physical issues that we manage with help from professionals involved through his wrap around services.  Our therapy provider is Catholic Community Services.  We do in-home therapy 4-5 days a week.  This involves a designated therapist that meets with him once a week and then myself once a week, and "shifts" or skills trainers/builders.   He's on an assortment of  medications that help him regulate his extreme emotions and are meant to allow him to access his cognitive thinking.  He attends Heron Creek, a theraputic public school with a private school setting, that specializes in special needs children, most of them behaviorally challenged.  He also sees a psychiatrist monthly, and has a full team of care coordinators.  In other words, this little nugget is a hand full and then some!

     Over the course of Boo Boo Bear's childhood, I've made special accommodations in to home so that he has a safe place to play, grow, and release excessive energy.  While not all of these precautions are needed now (thanks to therapy and a great psychiatrist), they all have been and essential part of our life.  I want to share some of the alterations I've done to give special needs providers ideas of what can be done within the home, and relatively cheap. Over the years, accommodations have changed to keep up with Boo Boo Bear's ever changing personality.

       Some of the safety changes included removing traditional light switch plates, that typically have two small screws to affix them to the wall, and replacing them with  a smooth screwless plate.  My little guy would unscrew the plates and try to get to the wiring.  The electrical outlets had to be completely covered with a smooth plate.  His bedroom window was broken during a tantrum and was immediately replaced with a new window, but for his protection, a 1/2" sheet of plexiglass was professionally installed on the inside window casing.  This would protect him from falling and from broken glass in the event he managed to break the window again.  The plexi had to be approved by our DHS case manager and certifier.  All dressers, and I say dressers plural because he's gone through five, had to be screwed into a stud in the wall because during a tantrum, they'd be flung over.  These are only some of the alterations done. 

     Some of the fun things I've done is installed gymnast rings in the ceiling studs in the center of his bedroom.  I found these at IKEA and they cost next to nothing.  The swing motion helps soothe him and he can swing to his hearts content.  I also installed rockwall hardware from Home Depot.  This is a vertical installation through the sheetrock and into the studs of his bedroom wall.  It took him a while to build the body strength needed to reach the ceiling, but this is one determined kid.  He wasted no time as he set out to meet the challenge.  He has a kick boxing bag with stand that I found at a garage sale for $5, and I found some kids boxing gloves at the local Good Will.  All of these things have helped Boo Boo Bear to exert the energy, frustration, and often times down right anger, away from people and personal property.

     Boo Boo Bear is a VERY loving lil' nugget, and always has such regret after an emotional outburst.  Having these tools has really helped him in so many ways.  I'd love to hear about things anyone else has done to alter the space used by their foster child or special needs child.  I wish I would have done many of these alterations sooner than I had, but kids don't come in a neatly packaged box with a manual, and many of my occupational therapy attempts were purely trial and error.

Casey Everly

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

From One Foster Moms Blog To Another

     Since I've started blogging, I've been scouring the Internet for single foster mom's and dad's that blog about her/his experiences.  I've been both surprised and disappointed to find there aren't many blogs like this out there.  I do have high expectations of people, which is a character flaw that I'm working on in my personal emotional growth, but COME ON PEOPLE, I need to know you're out there!

     It's a tad intimidating to write and be willing to share about my daily life and I'd hoped more people would be as open with their life as I intend to be with mine.  I found that many of the blogs are just plain dead.  In other words, someone started a blog and never returned to update it.  Some people never even came back to follow up with a second post.  Bummer!  I really am trying to find people, a community rather, that I can identify with, and feel a part of.

     Today, and by accident (I was surfing for a specific topic), I found a blogger that does a GREAT job of chronicling her life as a foster mom.  I meant to just drop in, peek around and if I saw anything I liked, I would be sure to leave a comment and say "hi, good job blogging foster mom". But, like a kid in a candy store, I got lost in the sweetness of the blogs tales of family, foster kids, bio parents and spicy humor.

     If you are a Foster Parent, better yet, a single foster parent, you should check out her blog: I Must Be Trippin' .  This lady, Mimi, has such a zest and love for the kids she fosters, and lets call it what it really is, she is their surrogate mommy.  Mimi is a single foster mom of multiple foster children.  In her blog, she's positive, creative, and funny, making the reading informative and enjoyable. Just reading her posts inspired me to throw on my work clothes, get out the tool box, and start wrenching on a custom attitude adjustment, special for yours truly.  I want to have a glass-half-full kind of perspective. 

     Mimi seems to be the kinda lady I could see myself sitting with on the front porch, a mojito in hand, swapping foster care war stories.  Each of us showing off our battle scars, recalling how each scar is a reminder of a child's life we've impacted.  Many times, a foster parent impacts the life of all the family involved with the foster child.  To choose to foster these innocent, precious little people is a big responsibility, and an even bigger personal reward for the foster parent.

     I'm grateful for people like Mimi, that work diligently to share daily life stories that encourage and support like minded people.  With a blog, you have the ability to touch the heart and minds of people and families anywhere in the world and allow the opportunity for everyone to find someone to connect with.  I can only hope that my blog will bring joy to someone else the way Mimi's did for me.

Casey Everly

Monday, April 23, 2012

How To Turn Garbage Into Money

     I mentioned in an earlier post that I refurbish furniture to bring in extra money.  I really just started to do this only a few months ago when I was in a serious need of instant cash.  To tell the truth, my home went into foreclosure.  My bank is currently under investigation for my situation specifically, but regardless of the reasons why, and why it wasn't my fault, or within my control to prevent, the foreclosure status was real and happening fast.

     Fees above and beyond my mortgage were accruing weekly, and it became painfully obvious that I wasn't going to make ends meet unless I took immediate action.  First line of defense, PRAY!  I can't stress this enough, God promised me I wouldn't lose the house.  I believed Him and knew that He wanted me to get off my duff and put in some elbow grease to increase my monthly income, but I didn't know exactly what I was supposed to do.

     During this time, my eldest daughter, Kayla, was working for the local dump.  One night after work, she brought me a beat up, left for dead dresser, thinking I might clean it up a bit and use it somewhere.  When I first saw it there was the ew factor, but then I really looked at it.  I wondered if this beat up corpse of boards and nails could possibly be brought back to life.  The more I looked, the more I realized it had good bones.  The structure was intact for the most part, it was real wood, and I could tell that at some point in its life, it was quite a looker.

     Five days and to many to count hours later, the dresser was done.  Clean, sanded, and painted, b-e-a-utiful!  It was a hardwood dresser with great lines and made to last.  Little did the original manufacturer know their dresser would live so many lives.  If they only knew that their creation would be abused and left for dead, painted on, written on, scratched, dented, chipped, and that in its final days, when it should be laid to rest, literally in the ground, that it would be given a second chance at life, that it by golly would shine once more. 

     The dresser cost me nothing but paint and sandpaper and probably some of my lower vertebrates (small price to pay).  But the investment reaped a whopping $100 profit and a new set of skills.  That dresser was my first and I've gotten much better in time with methods and resources.  Now I'm on my fifth piece of furniture.  My skills are increasing with each experience and so is the selling price of my pieces.  I've been able to purchase a random orbital sander, more brushes and rollers, and a few other odds and ends with my dresser sale profits.  I'm learning new painting and staining techniques every day.   I got my latest fixer upper dresser off Craigs List for $25, and it's selling for $150.  All the work was done in one day.  This one's a flat black finish with distressed detail.  To achieve this look, I  sanded down to the wood, primed, painted with latex flat black, sanded 120 grit, painted, sanded, painted, sanded, then when I thought my arms were just about to fall off, I put the final finish on with SC Johnson Paste Wax and WOW is she purdy!

     I'm no longer in foreclosure, thanks to God, my family and friends (Mom, Sara, Heidi. and two others that choose to be anonymous) but I still refurbish furniture to bring in fun money, and extra bill money.

Casey Everly

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Working Hard Pays Off

     Boo Boo Bear is only seven, but he definitely knows money can be his friend.  Or at least he wants it to be.  Poor little nugget, he wants so badly to have money so he can buy all of his hearts desires, although there probably isn't enough money on Earth.  He struggles so greatly to discipline himself enough to earn it.

     He came to me four days ago, desperate for a new pair of shoes and knowing he didn't need them, but really, really wanted them.  He knows me well enough to know that frivolous spending is out of the question right now.  So when he offered to do chores to earn his new shoes, he got my attention.  He had a glimmer of hope in his big brown eyes and could hardly stand still in anticipation of my answer.  I thought this would be a great opportunity for Boo Boo Bear to learn how hard it can be to earn money, the dedication it takes to get the job done no matter how tedious, tiring, boring or dirty it might be, and that with hard work, possibilities can be endless and results enormous.

     The job we agreed on was pulling the weeds.  Not some here, and some there, but ALL the weeds in the front yard.  At first he was like the energizer bunny, full of energy and happy to get right to it.  About 20 minutes later, reality must have set in because all of the sudden his body language and the hanging head told me that for him, the task became daunting and overwhelming.  Lots of tantrums, emotional highs and lows were to follow for Boo Boo Bear over the next three days.  He wanted those shoes more than candy, probably more than air.  He knew the agreement we made would not change, no weeds pulled, no shoes.

     Today, Sunday, Boo Boo Bear completed the weed pulling task.  It was a painful process, more so for me than for him, I'm sure.  But he did earn his shoes.  A gorgeous pair of sneakers with bright green laces.  He is a proud boy today.  Shoes are already worn in and looking like they'll be worn out sooner than later.  Thankfully or not, weeds grow back fast, and he'll have another chance to make money for his next must have.

Casey Everly

Saturday, April 21, 2012

My Son Has Two Moms

     This situation is as unconventional as it sounds  Although we do have fun with it and have even made our own family song, "my two moms".   Yes, my son has two moms, but it's not what you might think.  There's no step mom and there's no "partner".  My son, our son,  is also my nephew and foster child. 

     Through a series of events, Boo Boo Bear came to me as a small infant at 2 1/2 months old.  He knows where and who he came from and that it wasn't me that packed that chubby little bundle in my belly.  He has a baby book that was made especially for him, that shows both moms from the pregnancy through early childhood.  He's only known life this way and we've worked very hard to be as open and honest with him as we can.

     His bio mom is mama Sara, or if you ask Boo Boo Bear,  just plain mom.  I've heard stories that in a herd of sheep, if a mother sheep calls her little lamb, that the lamb somehow knows it's his mom calling that it can actually differentiate the mama's call through all the other baas and cries.  Or when one of the of lambs are crying, its mama knows which lamb cry is hers, and runs to his aid.  It's kinda like that for us.  We're both mom or mama, but the tone in Boo Boo Bears voice helps us identify which mom he's asking for.  It's kind of  a cool way of communication.  It's like we have our own secret language that really only consists of one word.

     My sister, Sara and I work dilligently to parent Boo Boo Bear as two mom's.  Co-parenting is not an easy job, but is crucial to the sucess of our child and children from divorce.  Sara has been back with us for nearly two years now, after a long leave of absense.  She's become an amazing woman and a geat mother.  Because of circumstances, Boo Boo Bear will remain with me permanently, but Sara spends every weekend with us and is always available for our son. 

     There have been many struggles, some probably obvious and some I wasn't expecting.  Having a two parent house hold was new to me and having another mom for Boo Boo Bear felt exciting, was a huge relief and also stressful.  We've bumped heads so many times, I swear I should have a goose egg the size of Texas!  However, our mama raised some strong willed, thick headed gals, so despite our issues,  we've survived each other, with love of course.

    Strangely, Boo Boo Bear plays us like any child would in a divorce situation.  "mom said I could", "mom doesn't make me do that", you know the drill.  We've built a united front, and stick to it religiously.  We bicker later if necessary.  At the end of the day, Boo Boo Bear is one lucky dude to have us both in his life, and God knows, Sara and I need each other to make it through his.

Casey Everly

Friday, April 20, 2012

Boo Boo Bear's Therapists' Last Day

         Daphna was assigned to work with my family, more specifically, with myself and my foster child Boo Boo Bear, who was almost 6yrs old when she started.  Boo Boo Bear had significant behavior and emotional regulations issues that caused him to display unsafe behavior towards self, others, animals and property.  He was, prior to working with Daphna, unmanageable and nearing a change of placement from the foster home he’d lived in for 5 ½ yrs to a possible treatment facility placement.  Six months into intensive therapy, with Daphna as his primary therapist, Boo Boo Bear began to show marked improvement.  Now, almost two years later and continued weekly therapy with Daphna, Boo Boo Bear has made great, measureable progress and demonstrates manageable and safe on a day-to day basis.

Today was Daphna's last day as Boo Boo Bear's therapist.  We've worked with Daphna for nearly two years now through Catholic Community ServicesShe's worked one-on-one with our family on a weekly basis for a very long time.  She's taken another job in the same field, but will be working with troubled teens vs. family and smaller children.  We had a luau, disco ball and yummy pizza to send her on her way.  We Will Miss You Daphna!!!

Casey Everly

Good Morning My Princess & Prince

     Remember those commercials, "the best part of waking Folgers in your cup", are your singing it in your head?  They paint such a Norman Rockwell picture of a beautiful, stress free, relaxing, WELCOME to YOUR Day kinda picture don't they?

      They make me think of birds chirping me awake instead of an alarm clock, the fresh roasted coffee beans percolating and brewing to perfection while the aroma gently wafts through the kitchen, up the stairs, around the corner, under my blanket and into my perfectly moisturized nostrils.  Eyes gently flutter open, my hair still perfect from the day before, rosy pink cheeks and somehow my mascara is perfectly in place, beautifully coating each lash with such perfection, Kim Kardashian herself would be jealous. What a bunch of bull pucky!

     Let me paint you a picture of what a real morning, with a real family, really looks like: 7:15am, Maiya: "GET OUTTA MY ROOOOOOM!"  Boo Boo Bear: "I'M NOT IN YOUR ROOOOOOM!" Me: Eyes are stuck in closed position to much pressure to open, bed warm, must try to wake-up, kids in imminent danger....rollll left, aah bed so warm,'s quiet....could it be???are they done??? Pounding food steps down the hall, pounding foot steps back up the hall.  Foot steps stop at what sounds to be right in front of Maiya's bedroom.  "MOOOOOM! Mooooom he's in my room again!  Me: Good morning guys.

Casey Everly

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Meeting With DHS Certifier Today

     I recently, and by the grace of God, brought my home out of foreclosure status. (I have lots of ideas that I'd love to share if you're going through this)  I've been waiting for this to get resolved before I pursue bringing in another Foster Child to the house hold.  I have a four bedroom home.  It's a 1970's updated split level, which is great for a gaggle of kids.

     A couple weeks ago I called my DHS Certifier, Matt, and asked him to look into the option of having another kiddo placed here.  I'm looking for a DD Eligible child.  DD kids are a bit more work that having a standard foster child, but the compensation can be double.  Look, if I'm qualified, willing to work hard, have the space...than why not?  So, my certifier is coming over today with the paper work and to do his regular home inspection.

     I'm nervous at the thought of another child, but I'm already home much of the day, and there is such a great need for someone with my skills and knowledge of the system.  In the past I've fostered up to two children at a time.  It's been a while, but I think I'm up for it.  Worst case scenario, I go through all the hoops; meetings with DHS, DD Services, bio parents, therapists, psychologist, psychiatrist, teachers, medical doctors and finally court to get the child through the labyrinth of the system, and get them receiving his/her benefits and then they can move to a more permanent placement.  I don't see things going this way, but I'm open to possibilities.

Casey Everly

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Kayla's Filming On The Set Of Leverage Tomorrow!!!

Yay!  My 19yr old daughter Kayla, works with Extras Only and  got a small part on the set of Leverage that films here in Portland.  I'm so excited for her and can't wait to see her on the TV!  I'm a proud mama.

Casey Everly

My approach is a bit off

     This weekend I bought my first pair of yoga pants.  For most women this would be no big deal.  For me, going to OLD NAVY with the intent of actually purchasing clothing for myself is A BIG DEAL.  I found the perfect pant.  Black, snug, cropped and a bit flared.  Ahhhh, cute with sneakers, cute with flip flops and oh so comfy! 

     All was well in my world until....they unexpectedly disappeared.  Now, my house is clean.  Not just tidy, but actually clean.  Things are in their place as they should be, (did I mention I'm ADD and OCD?)  All laundry is done.  Floors are clear of clothing clutter.  There is not a hiding place to be found here and yet I CAN'T FIND MY YOGA PANTS! 

     My dresser was the first place I tore through and to no avail.  Long pants, short pants, mostly to small of pants, but NO yoga pants.  My next thought is Maiya must have received my perfectly folded new yoga pants in her laundry the day before.  So, I ask her to look through her clothes to find my pants.  She assumes I'm accusing her of having them and immediately takes offense to my inquiry and subtle demand to commence the search party for the illusive pant. 

      One thing leads to another and before I know it I'm yet again arguing with Maiya rather than finding my pants.  She's intensely denying having them, I'm intensely pushing her to start looking.   I did have a moment of clarification concerning my approach with Maiya, and really my approach in life with people in frustrating situations.  Had I come to Maiya with a sincere expression of my feelings about why the pants were important to find and would she be able to help me, perhaps I could have avoided one more conflict with her.  She felt bombarded with a silly mission of finding a pair of black pants and I felt unheard and unimportant. 

     In the end I never found the pants.  I ended up wearing another pair of stretchy, black, cropped pants.

Casey Everly

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Good Morning

Just how many times can my teenager say "I hate you" before a morning cup of coffee?  Well, in my case about 10.  Thanks to a friend, I've started working through The Total Transformation.  Its supposed to help me with my kids & their challenging behaviors.  Mean while, I'm running out of things to remove from Maiya's room.  She lost the privilege of a door now, which makes it all the easier to remove more items.  She no longer has her computer or makeup, and now it looks like hard labor is inevitable.  I'm wishing I wouldn't have sprayed the weeds with Roundup, I could have given her hours of unusually cruel and torturous weed pulling. 

Good Morning!
Casey Everly

Monday, April 16, 2012

Though I lost my keys, really lost my mind...

Locked my dog, and I thought my keys, in my bedroom today.  Called a locksmith I met while Craig's Listing over the weekend.  He said he'd be right over if I needed him.  Mean while, Kayla came over to help my situation.  When she came in the house she said she found my keys.  Confused I asked, "where?", "locked in your car Mom".  ARE YOU KIDDING ME???!!!  Luckily, after much inspection, we realized I neglected to lock my car.... So, keys, still in ignition, were obtained just in time to let Lilly out from her kennel in my locked room.  Locksmith Craig's List guy was called and thanked for his now not needed services and I decided I need a nap.

Casey Everly

First Day of My Blog!!!

Day 1:  Today is the day I begin my blog.  This is my public diary and account of daily successes, failures, thoughts and experiences.  I know I'm not alone in this.  I do have God, who thankfully understands better than I, what heartaches I've had, my fears, dreams and hopes, struggles and most importantly, my future.  Our future really.  Because it's not just me. 

    I think I'll begin with my children and as I learn to blog as a habit and as it becomes more of a natural part of my life, I'll fill you in on how I got here.

     I have three children; Kayla who is 19, almost 20, Maiya who is 13 and wishes she was 20, and Boo Boo Bear (not his real name), my foster son who is 7.  Each is precious to me is his/her own way and each drive me nuts in ways only he/she can.  Come on people, you know what I'm talking about here...

     Kayla no longer lives at home.  So that leaves Maiya and Boo Boo Bear here with me.  Oh, almost forgot our cat "Catty" and our Mini Rat Terrier, "Lilly".  So there you have it, mi famillia.

     Right now Maiya is in her room at her desk working on a Geography project for school.  I home school her through Clackamas Web Academy as of the end of December 2011.  She's been lolly gaggin' and is behind on her daily assignments, which would explain the lack of a bedroom door for her right now.  The goal is two assignments per subject per day.  She's behind a week due to sickness and then laziness.  Soooo, she lost her door until she's caught up.

     Boo Boo Bear is at school.  He attends a special school for kids that don't necessarily fit in at a typical public school.  There are approximately 10 kids of all ages and 5 teachers who are also therapists.  He only attends half days right now due to severe behavioral issues.   Ugh, sometimes makes for a long day for me.

     I started on another dresser.  Just got it all sanded and began the paint process this morning.  I've been refinishing furniture as a way to bring in some extra cashola for the family.  (I'll tell you more about that later.) Thank God for Craig's List!  I can buy a $15 dresser, solid wood of course, and paint it up pretty to resell for $80-$100.  It take some know how, tools and time, but when it's done and sold, WOW that feels good!

    I feel great about writing.  It's not particularly my forte, but I really hope to find someone, anyone really, that has some common life experiences.  I want to help someone with my story and be helped by someone sharing theirs.  I have so much to share and I'm a bit overwhelmed as to where to begin my story.  I think over time, I'll be able to share how we all got to today, me sitting here writing and thinking about how blogging could change my life and maybe yours too.

Casey Everly