Yesterday was baby Charlie's 6 month permanency planning hearing. The Social Worker called Monday to say I didn't really need to be there, but I had already scheduled it in my work calendar and knew it wouldn't take too long, so decided I would go. I hesitated on going but then someone said I always go because I want to hear firsthand what is happening. That made complete sense. We only live 6 miles from the courthouse and aside from parking it is very easy to get to.
Most times you sit on the bench just inside the main area not in the gallery, but behind the attorney tables. Once for Miss M I sat at the attorney table and yesterday I sat at the attorney table with the state attorney and the SW. The judge has the opportunity to ask you questions as does the state attorney and the GAL attorney when you do show up.
It was very routine, they wanted to get a status update on the adoption, it is staffed, the next step is to review the adoption home study and the team will need to review our suitability. It is likely to be the same team that reviewed it for Miss M, so that should go well. The placement date will be set and we have 30 days to file from placement date, then we will file and wait our 30-90 days for the court to approve. I am not nervous about that process at all.
So, onto court. Yesterday was the last day her GAL was going to appear before that judge because he is moving out of state. Let's just say everyone loves this GAL. He is so thorough, nice, caring for the kids, follows all the visitation schedules, and a volunteer, too. We love him and he really cares for all his kids and Charlie. Before we went on record the judge joking ordered that he was not allowed to leave the state of North Carolina, that he had to continue to live here and serve the kids of NC. She said a lot of sweet words about him.
Then we went on record and the SW stated her case of where we were in process, the GAL attorney didn't ask any questions. They asked me how she was doing. Then the judge says, "I recognize you. Did you attend one of the adoption celebrations the county does?". I told her yes I did for my now two year old. (Here's an article from about that day) Funny that she remembered us. Each year the county does a county wide foster care adoption celebration where they hold court and put the courts seal of approval on all adoptions. The judge then asked how many more kids were we going to adopt. I said that if our SW had anything to do with it 1-2 more. I think my hubs would have said "we're good", LOL.
The next was the GAL offered up his summary that she was doing great in a great home and he was very happy how her case plan was going and court was over.It went really well. It is still so amazing to me how we got so lucky to be blessed with these two great adoption stores from foster care.