Saturday, February 10, 2018

Creating a Family Book: My First Challenging Steps

I've been given a brief (frustratingly brief?) outline of what I should do to create a family album. I have many questions! The internet isn't much help as Google brings up books for private newborn adoption meant for adults where I think my book is supposed to be meant for the child. Maybe it's for the child. I don't know, actually. Plus, my age range of children is pretty big so I'm not sure if I should make a younger book and a separate older book or just straddle the middle line...

My current mock-up is Disney themed and eight pages long. I used printer paper to sketch what I thought should be on the pages. When I get some answers I plan on buying Word and doing a printable version with digital scrapbook paper I've found for free. Doing a mock-up also allowed me to make a list of photos I need to take.

Here's what my sheet says:

Making a Photo/Family Album

A family album is a method of describing your home and family in pictures and words to others in the adoption process. In this way it will serve as an enhancement to your home assessment report and will facilitate the matching process.

Upon being matched with a child your family album takes on increased importance. It will be used to help prepare the child for your initial meeting. The child is able to get a sense of who you are, the family that he/she will become part of, the home, room, and the community where he will live.

Family albums are an excellent opportunity for families to involve all the members and preparing for a child.

It is helpful to use more pictures (hand-drawn or photos) than a lot of written material. Be creative and plan ahead.

The finished album should be on 8 x 11 inch paper so that it can be easily photo copy for the file and for sending to prospective matches.

Here are some suggestions on what can be included:

This section should genereally introduce your family. Individual pictures are more helpful than a family group which is hard for a child to see where they might fit in. Make sure to label the pictures using first names only.

Biographical information:
This should contain a brief summary of your family. Included the following: racial/ethnic origin, ages, education, employment, health, others in the home, extended family, and pets.

Interest hobbies and activities:
Describe what each member of the family does and what you enjoy doing as a family.

Church or other groups:
Describe church or two other groups that your family is involved with. Also include what rituals are types of activities in which you participate as a result of your membership include pictures of the church or and activity.

What schools do children your family/community attend; what schools are available to an adopted  hild.

Recreation facility /programs in your area:
Include the type of area in which you live I E rural, city, small town, excetera

Include a floor plan. Describe your home and include pictures of the rooms including where the adopted child will sleep. Mention if you plan to include the child in changing the room to their liking.

Family Rules:
Briefly describe chores, allowance, guests, mealtimes, bedtimes, and rules.

Include how your family deals with anger. What are acceptable ways of expressing anger in your home?