ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Really Full House

Updated on February 10, 2013

We are living aross the street from Granny and Grandad. Daniel and Fritz have just been placed in our home as my first foster sons. Billy is staying with us for an indefinite period of time. It is the second or third week in December and it is cold and rainy. I get a call from Shari, another previous foster child who is 19 years old and has a one year old infant. Shari is in trouble. Her boyfriend’s sister has locked her out of the house she shared with them and she is in a phone booth outside a convenience store. I leave Billy in charge and get Shari who is about ten minutes away.

Shari sees my van pull into the parking lot and she opens the door and climbs in with a year old baby on her hip and a diaper bag slung over her shoulder. The baby is not wearing shoes and Shari has no coat. I ask her if she has access to the baby’s things, like the safety seat or shoes. Shari says she thinks she can get them. I think about where everyone can sleep. I still have Nina’s crib and there are twin beds in the room Nina and Billy are using. I do not want people sleeping in the family room or living room. I tell Shari that Billy came to stay with us about a week earlier and I tell her about the boys. It will be a full house.

As we enter the house, Ivy and Lea let me know that Daniel would not do what Billy said so she poured a soda over his head. Daniel seems fine, not the slightest bit upset. Billy will not be in charge for a while. I ask Ivy and Lea if they are set for school for the next day and they are. I tell Daniel to take a shower and wash his hair and get ready for bed. The boys ask for “Chips Ahoy” and I tell them I will get them out when they are ready for bed. I ask Lea and Ivy if they could please get Nina ready for bed while I find places for everyone to sleep. Billy, Ivy, Lea, Shari and Nina are all happy to see each other and even though there is chaos, there is happiness.

The bedroom that Billy, Shari, Nina and the baby will sleep in is very large so I move the bookcases more to create a large area and a small area. One with twin beds and one with a crib and an airbed on the floor for Nina and the baby. I find bedding for all and I direct Shari and Billy to make up the beds. Before I leave Billy and Shari to settle and arrange, I remind them that it is a school night and there are five children that need to be at school in the morning.

In fact, the boys have not yet started school, there are some complications with enrollment and I plan on dealing with that tomorrow. There are only one and one half weeks left before school is dismissed for the holidays but I want to get them enrolled. When I took the boys to the elementary school in our neighborhood to be enrolled, we were told we had to wait for their files to arrive from their previous schools. This had not happened to me before, but in the other school district I had been a trustee. As the boys and I are leaving the school site, Fritz starts weeping and says he cannot attend this school because he has never had to wear a uniform. Daniel thinks uniforms are “cool” but he does not convince Fritz.

I learn that Fritz has been attending a school for extremely disturbed children and cannot enroll in a regular public school without a long process. Daniel will be accepted by the school in our neighborhood after an interview with the superintendent which is completely unexpected by me, but we cooperate. Fritz does not want to return to his old school and I explain to him that there are not many options but if he wants to change schools, I will go through the process with him. Fritz tells me that if he returns to his old school, he will have to do many “word searches” and he hates word searches. I agree to call his teacher and see what we can do. “Word searches” are word puzzles which have words hidden in a block of letters. The words can be vertical, horizontal, or diagonal, even backwards in some puzzles. Some children love “word search” puzzles, and some hate them. The reality is that “word search” puzzles have no proven academic value and some kids cannot do them even if their vocabularies are advanced. I call Fritz’ teacher and explain to her that Fritz is new to my home and I ask her if he can be excused from the “word search” assignment considering the recent upheaval in his life. Fritz’ teacher replies: “Fritz is a very lazy boy and he has had these word searches for two weeks, and he will not be excused.” Fritz has a packet of at least 30 puzzles stapled together he must complete. I call all the girls and Fritz to the kitchen table. When Shari, Billy, Lea, Ivy and Fritz are seated at the table, I distribute the puzzles equally to each child with a sharpened pencil. The puzzles are completed within a few minutes, I collect them, staple them together and hand them to Fritz. “Sweet!” he says.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

      Pamela Dapples 

      8 years ago from Just Arizona Now

      I see in the comments that this was nine years ago! What a great idea to bring out old journal entries or memories like this.

      Half way through reading this hub, I knew I couldn't do what you're doing. And then to read that these children are who you adopted -- is so wonderful! You do have a lot of love to give -- that's very evident.

    • kaltopsyd profile image


      8 years ago from Trinidad originally, but now in the USA

      Wow, you sure know how to handle a full house. I especially loved how you handled the wordsearch issue! You're great! :-)

    • Anne Pettit profile imageAUTHOR

      Anne Pettit 

      8 years ago from North Carolina

      Yes, Waaaaay too full. My big heart did not tolerate this for too long. Thanks for reading my hub. Anne

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      8 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Sounds like you had your hands full and you obviously have a big heart.

    • Anne Pettit profile imageAUTHOR

      Anne Pettit 

      8 years ago from North Carolina

      In fact, this was December, 2001. Nina, Fritz, Daniel and Lea were adopted by me. Ivy is my birth child. Thankyou for reading my Hub! Anne

    • bayoulady profile image


      8 years ago from Northern Louisiana,USA

      So,that was Dec. How are things going now? How full is your house?


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)