Thursday, August 29, 2013

Paperwork, Home Inspections, and Background Checks...Oh My!

 Once the decision was made to finally say Yes, the awesome fun official stuff began. The initial paperwork from Miracle Hill consisted of the basics.  Names, address, contact info, members of the household, etc.  There was also a statement of faith, releases for background checks and the like.  
Easy, peasy lemon squeezy.  
We mailed in our paperwork having being told that someone would contact us to set up an "initial interview".  Okay..done.  About a week after we sent in our paperwork, a lady called and set it up.  A precious lady named Stephanie (who I am so blessed to now call my friend) arrived at our home one afternoon for the interview.  I was a nervous wreck.  I'm not even gonna lie. "Welp, here we go, she's definitely gonna see what total screw ups we are and all this will be over and done with," I was thinking to myself.  She walked in, hugged me tight and introduced herself to us.  Oh, wow.  This woman had the sweetest, most comforting spirit of anyone I had ever met.  I mean seriously (and she's gonna kill me for saying this) if anyone should be walking around on this earth wearing a halo, Stephanie should. She immediately put me at ease. She promised to walk us through each and every step of the licensing process and started telling us exactly what those steps would be.  
Home inspections, health inspections, fire inspections, background checks, medical exams for everyone who lives in the home, fingerprints for Mark and I, homestudy.....and on and on.....
  "Wow."   "There's a lot to this, huh?" "Yes, it normally takes about 90 days to complete everything and get licensed. But don't you worry, we'll get you through it."   Have I said yet how much I LOVE HER

Training hours need to be completed. Reference letters need to be received.  Your first born's blood must be spilled on the altar of the most high goat. 
 Okay, no I'm kidding on that last one but it was A LOT of stuff!
 Which I totally understand.  They didn't know us.  Of course, we needed to be 
checked out. 

 I felt so much better after that initial interview.  
Stephanie left us with two things that afternoon...a renewed belief that we were indeed answering God's call...
and a lot more paperwork to fill out.

Fingerprinting appointments must be made.  Home inspections need to be scheduled.  The fire inspector will have to come out.  You need a fire extinguisher and a fire escape plan posted.  Oh, and that window in the room that you want to use for the foster kids will have to be replaced. The opening is too small.  It has to be a certain number of square feet when opened. Make sure to cover all your electrical outlets.  Where do you keep your supplies? Do you own firearms?  And we are gonna need copies of last years tax returns. And bank statements. And paycheck stubs. And what exactly you owe out and to whom. Do you own any vehicles? We need copies of your car insurance cards for each vehicle. Any other assets? Boats? Land? Vacation homes?
 Swiss bank accounts?
Now we are not uber private people, but the thought of random strangers traipsing through our house with a fine tooth comb didn't really appeal to me.  But we knew that these things had to be done in order to get our license. 
 I'm a worrier by nature so I stressed over each one.  I wanted to make sure everything was perfect.  Come to find out, there was really no reason to worry at all.  Each inspector who came to the house was super nice and just checked out the things they were there to check. Slowly but surely each of the requirements were being checked off one by one.  

  • Background checks, clear. 
  • Medical exams, check. 
  • Fire inspection, check. 
  • Health inspection, check. 
  • Training hours, done. 
  • Window replaced, yep. 
  • Fingerprints, check. 

Okay, great!  Now we just have to do the Homestudy and we are done! 

Whoop Whoop!  Wait....what's a Homestudy?  

There is not a closet in this house that hasn't been studied already! 
 I mean the dust bunny under the couch has been put under a microscope for crying out loud.  He's traumatized. He'll never be the same. 

No, silly.  A homestudy is all of the information we've already obtained plus a final interview to gather all the other information we need to submit everything to the state.  Oh, okay.  An interview.  Gotcha.  No problem. An interview we can do.  Let's do this!
"Now the questions will be a little more in depth for this interview." 
 Ummm, okaaay. 
 Turns out that was the understatement of the year.....


  1. Valerie, I am loving these posts! Hubby and I are in the "trainng hours" stage at the moment, and are trying to get our applications pulled together to submit. It is quite a process, and it looks like there's still a lot ahead!

    Thanks for sharing!

    Kim :-)

    1. Hey, Kim! I'm so glad your enjoying the blog! And thank you for your sweet comment. I think it's awesome that your family is willing to open your home to children in need! Thank you for that! The licensing process does seem never ending..but you WILL get through it! So hang in there! You'll be loving on some little ones in no time! :-) Thanks again for following along!