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Christmas miracle

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(L-R) Josie Marro, Amanda Terrazas and Alana Ahquin work together kneading dough for a batch of sugar cookies. Baking sugar cookies was just one of the activities that took place Monday during the "Bake It, Take It Winter Wonderland" day camp, sponsored by Girl Scouts. The camp was held at Holy Trinity Parish in Sunnyside.

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I've been a foster parent for about five years now and I want to tell you about my Christmas miracle, which happened just a few days ago.

On Dec. 1, 2000 they brought to me a cute, little 5-year-old Native American boy, who had already been in two different foster homes. For the next several weeks, just the word "move" would sadden him and scare him.

I reassured him over and over that he didn't have to move again and that my home is his home. His favorite question to me over the next several months was, "Can I go home?" I'd answer, "You are home." He'd say, "I know."

He didn't remember calling anyone Mom, so that has been hard for him. Several months ago, at age nine, after getting him to bed but before I went out his bedroom door, my boy Chris said, "Good night Mom." With my melted heart, I said, "Good night Son."

My Christmas miracle is that, after trying for three long years to take guardianship of him, it has finally been approved as of Dec. 3. He brightened my Christmas season in December 2000 and now in December 2004 he truly is my Christmas miracle.

If my son says "Good night Mom" for the next 10 years, it's OK with me.

There are a lot more children, like my boy, out there who need a home. If you become a foster parent for the right reason, you could give a child a home, a gift. You have to do it from your heart. No, it's not easy. A lot of us have stories we can tell. But these children are hurting so bad. It is unbelievable what they have been through.

I don't play a lot of Christmas songs in my home any more because it hurts some of the children to hear it. Two years ago I asked a 16-year-old girl living in my home what she wanted for Christmas. She said, "An Easy Bake oven, because I always wanted one." She was happy opening that gift.

These children need us. They need our prayers and love...I'm proud of my boy! He's on the honor roll, he loves God and going to church.

/s/ Debbie Skinner, Sunnyside

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