Saturday, May 23, 2015

Updated adoption reading list

A while ago I did a post about the adoption books I've read.  Well, that list has increased enough, I think it's time to update that.  Each book has had its relevant parts and I've learned a little something from each one.  I have indeed, once again, read each and every one of these books cover to cover and taken extensive notes on many.  After reading so many books about the challenges of adoption, it still does not deter us from our goal.  It makes me grateful for the resources out there and the information I learn.

**= faves  ones in red are the new ones.

**Toddler Adoption by Hopkins-Best:  First opened my eyes to the unique challenges that the toddlers have when being adopted.  Too young to understand what's going on, too old to be unaffected by the confusing move that's happening to them.  This book threw me for a loop but gave me a lot of hope.

Mei Mei by Bowen - pictures of Chinese orphans.  One look in their empty eyes and you feel a little queasy.

Welcome Home! by Lisa Schwartz - a collection of essays written by adoptive families.  So very interesting to read about the way things were done in the past compared to now.  Also to hear perspectives after 20 years have gone by, and some stories from the adoptees.

**The Waiting Child by Champnella - a favorite.  The world stopped and I couldn't put the book down.  I had to know if Xiao Mei Mei comes home!!!

Adopt Without Debt - Not a lot of new information, but was helpful to see how others did it.  It can be done!

The Grace Effect - required reading.  Zack and I read it together and we were intrigued by this family's perspective on the plight of the orphans in Ukraine.  Many of the things in the book were confirmations of what we've heard from many, many others.

When Work and Family Collide - an easy read about keeping family a priority.  A great reminder.  Recommended by someone we met from Christian Children's Home of Ohio.

**How We Love Our Kids - A game changer in parenting.  Learn about yourself and how you parent and small changes can make a huge difference.  A great, great book.

**The Connected Child by Karen Purvys - Dude, if I could just download this whole book to my brain, that would be greeeaaatttt.  All about forming attachment, enhancing brain chemistry, and helping your child process sensory input.  It's like seriously cool stuff.

**Parenting with Love and Logic - the nuts and bolts of our parenting theory.  So, so, cool and so, so, doable.  Every day I think about this book.  We've been practicing some things even on our very young ones!

Love and Logic Magic birth-6 years - tips for a challenging age.  Some helpful insights.

**Loving Our Kids on Purpose - inspired by Love and Logic, it puts the principles in a refreshing Christian perspective that is also freaking hilarious.  (Weird, I know).  Zack and I laughed until our guts ached.  What a great book.  Our favorite of all time.

**The Complete Book of International Adoption - recommended by a fellow prospective adoptive parent.  This book is the international adoption 101, start-here resource.  A great beginning course on everything you are going to need to know.  Shows you where to start.

In On It - what adoptive parents wish their families would know.  A good book, but I can't quite bring myself to make my family read it.  It's a great resource on adoption terminology and sensitivity.

The Edge of Unthinkable - recommended by a friend, this is a great book from the perspective of someone who went through the foster system from an abusive background.  A very important read.

Successful Adoption - the same type of "101" book as The Complete Book of International Adoption, only with a Christian perspective.  That was nice to read those Christian insights.

Adopting the Hurt Child - this one frightened me and had me in tears in the first chapter.  What some children go through just leaves you feeling like a big cloud of black in a dark hole in the bottom of a pit.  They don't mince words in this book, and the stories are horrific.  That being said, they present a lot of hope and tools for healing.  Next on my list are the sister books, Parenting the Hurt Child, and Brothers and Sisters about adopting sibling groups.  Wish me luck!

Welcoming a Brother or Sister Through Adoption - This book was gold in knowing how to help biological children when integrating an adopted sibling.  I went to a seminar by the author which was also cool.

Our Own: Parenting and Adopting the Older Child - Wonderful resource specifically regarding the challenges of adopting an older child.  Provided information about school, language, and siblings that other books only touched on.  So many practical ideas and interventions.

The Out of Sync Child - Specifically about Sensory Processing Disorder, something common in children from orphanage settings.  Also provided a lot of insight into my biological child, Logan.  Everyone processed sensory information differently, this book opened my eyes to that world and helped me appreciate everyone's unique abilities.

**I Love You Rituals - recommended by the counselor we will be using when home.  This book was AWESOME.  It teaches you all sorts of rhymes, games, greetings, etc to incorporate into your day.  Kian and Logan were wonderful guinea pigs and love the little games and things.  I even tried one already on Gianna and she picked it right up.  This would be a wonderful read for any family, but especially in those families who are fostering attachment or going through changes or challenges.

Attaching in Adoption - the book I read directly before the travel process.  All sorts of ins and outs regarding attachment.  The How To manual.  Laid out the different attachment styles in a helpful and detailed way.  The "Phases" were so helpful in laying out how building attachment works, whether starting as an infant or as an older child.  Goes through challenges and how to address them.  I took more notes on this book than any other.  A very helpful resource.

Building the Bonds of Attachment in Deeply Troubled Children - a gut-punch of a book.  Outlines a narrative of an attachment troubled child and her journey in American foster care.  Comments about the tremendously difficult task the therapeutic foster mom faces as she builds the attachment bonds with this child.  SO helpful in its realistic approach and also terrifying in its own way.

The Blessing - a book gifted to the moms in our mom's group.  It talks about the unconditional love that parents should show to their children, and how to ensure that children know and feel it.  A great read, refreshing after all the heavy adoption books.

This Means War - a dramatic book about the realities of the spiritual battle involved in foster care and adoption.  It was unapologetically negative - the author wanted those going into foster care or adoption to be totally aware of the difficulties they may face, so that they know their need for God's help and they do not go into it with unrealistic expectations.

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