So the first visit. We met the kids on a Sunday morning for the first time. Nerves galore on all sides. Until we said we wanted to take them to the zoo. Then we were their best friends.
It had been a long time since I had been to the Cincinnati Zoo. I had forgotten what it was like to see it through the eyes of a kid. “Can we see… ” “Can we go…” “Do you think they have a…” for 5 hours. We started to learn things that day. Like the youngest has a mind like a steel trap. Don’t tell that one anything unless you plan to follow through. And that the boy… that poor boy… he just gets run over by his sisters. I have to make sure to make him talk or he will just sit back and do whatever they want.
Of course, it isn’t a trip to the zoo if someone doesn’t cry. And we had tears. The youngest and her sister wanted their faces painted. Highway Robbery!!! $8 for paint that’s just going to get rubbed off before we get out of the place. And that’s the cheap stuff! Anyway, I was only willing to pay for the $8 face paint. And the youngest didn’t care for that one bit. So… tears. We learned fairly quick that that is her go to reaction when she doesn’t get her way. That one doesn’t take no very well. She’s adorable and she knows it. That one is going to keep us on her toes. And the oldest was willing to forgo a face paint because her sister was crying. No. She followed the rules, so she got the reward. Throw a fit, get left out. There are more of those coming our way.
And the ducks. There are all kinds of cool animals at the zoo, but what did they all scream and scream for pictures of? Ducks. Regular old ducks. All I could think was “we can see ducks for free!” Kids.
Then we took them to our home to feed them dinner. Chili dogs and macaroni and cheese. And this is when we discovered food issues. My husband and I love food. Since I’ve met him, my palate has expanded so much and there is so much good food out there. We just love it. So when these three looked at us and basically said all they eat is boxed mac n cheese, PBJ and hot dogs, I wanted to keel over. These kids are either going to try things or get real sick of PBJ.
We showed them our house, our home, our dogs, our life. They were trying so hard that day. It was heartbreaking. They just want a family and a home so bad that they will go over the top to get it, to impress us. It was so clear.
Then, of course, they discovered the doggie door. What is it about kids and doggie doors? When our nephew visited us one year with my in-laws, that kid went in and out of the doggie door instead of using the regular door. Is it easier? Cool? Something that they know that adults can’t and won’t do? They kept sticking their heads out the doggie door to yell up at us on the deck.
We dropped them off that night with their current foster parents and started to plan our next event. The first overnight. Oh my…