Some of the processes between preparing for our open adoption and becoming licensed foster parents, are the same, and some are very different. This second time around we had to get our fingerprints sent off to the FBI. Unlike last time when we went the courthouse and were surrounded by teachers and sex offenders, this time we were sent to a third party company. Boring! And I was looking forward to having ink rolled on my hands, simply for the sensory experience of it, but now they roll your plain ol’ fingers across a small scanner-type machine. Double boring!

Our written home study last time was a positive description of our home, as well as our lives. “Red walls, cozy kitchen” — stuff like that. This time, there are specific WACs (Washington Administrative Code) that we, and our home, need to comply with. For example, we need to have a 5 lb fire extinguisher. We need to keep a flashlight in the foster child’s room. We can’t feed our foster kids anything home-canned other than pickles and jams. And what I would consider the most disrupting to normalcy: keeping all medicines (both prescription and OTC) and vitamins locked up — with internal, external, pet, and any medicines the foster child may come with, all separated. That said, we were taught to keep in mind that some WACs came about as a direct result of a foster child getting hurt because the foster parents weren’t doing the above.

We have now completed all three of our home study visits. The first was an initial walk-through of our home, seeing what WACs we were already following, a chance to meet Seth, and an interview with me and Todd together. The second was an interview with just Todd, and the third was an interview with just me plus a final review of our home. We also both went through CPR/first aid/blood-borne pathogen training, physicals and got tested for TB. Now we’re waiting to view a draft of the written home study, and hope to have our license in hand within the next few weeks.