Simple Blessings

The Official Blog of Coyote Hill

And He took them in His arms and blessed them... Mark 10:16

May
26

A Transformed Life

A young lady in The Zimmer Home was baptized recently at her church by her Home Parents, Al and Rachel Howell. Her life is being dramatically changed by Christ’s love, and the love, acceptance and direction of her Coyote Hill family. Home Parent Rachel Howell explains:

*name changed for sake of confidentiality

“Karissa* is the reason we believe in Coyote Hill.  We work with and love on all sorts of kids, and many times it’s difficult to see fruit.  With Karissa, the fruit is becoming very evident.  She has chosen to take control of her life (or rather, give control to God) instead of letting anger take control of her.  Read the rest of this entry »

May
18

Loving and Letting Go

Letting go is never easy.

Each year, Coyote Hill serves close to 50 children. Our homes provide long term stability for children and sibling groups until children can find permanent placements, either through reunification with their biological parents or adoption.

Reunification is the ideal goal if it is possible. Sometimes it might take years, but it is always worth it. This past Christmas, we had two sisters who were able to return home after being in foster care with us since 2011. Read the rest of this entry »

May
11

Prepared for the Future

Jahrona in the spring of 2012, before he graduated high school.

Jahrona Banks was a young man who spent several years at Coyote Hill – even though there were times when he didn’t want to be here. Yet now, looking back, he realizes that those years were shaping and preparing him to succeed as an adult. Read the rest of this entry »

May
04

The Way Back Home

*name changed for sake of confidentiality

At Coyote Hill, we are blessed with AMAZING moms that love and nurture the children in their homes as a whole and individually. With many varied schedules and lots of kids, it makes one-on-one time with the children very difficult. However, the Home Parents do make time for those moments, and in honor of Mother’s Day, we’d like to share a bit about one such moment with a mom and one of her “tweenagers.”

Everyone knows that transitioning from being a child to a teenager can be a very trying time in the life of a child. Add in the other challenges that our children deal with, and it can become overwhelming. Read the rest of this entry »

Feb
04

My Family Doesn’t Want Me – How Could You?

A young woman who once lived in Cathy’s Home, with former Home Parents Bill and Tammy Atherton, shares a struggle that she, and many of our children, dealt with when arriving at Coyote Hill. Yet there is hope! Today with her own children, she is using some of the lessons she learned during her brief time here: 

Bill & Tammy with kids in front of Cathy's Home, Sept. 2000

I used to hate anything and everything about myself. I now know that what happened to me was not my fault and I should not feel hate for myself because of what others did to me. But I had not yet learned that when I came to Coyote Hill, and so I pushed everyone away in fear when they tried to get close to me. I feared losing them. I feared growing to care for them, only to have them reject me. It seemed easier to just push people away than to grow to love and accept them, risking the hurt and rejection that I feared would come later. The people at Coyote Hill tried to help me heal, and I’m thankful for that. I was damaged, and I regret that at the time I couldn’t distinguish good motives from bad. Read the rest of this entry »

Jan
13

Why Isn’t She Mad?

Our Founder, Larry McDaniel, asks a thought-provoking question…

While I worked on the property recently, a beautiful eight-year-old bounced down the lane from the Hubbell Home to the office. She and a sibling have been here at Coyote Hill for almost a year…and probably will be for a long time. She had a spring in her step and a big smile on her face, and it brought joy to my heart to see her and know that we provide her with a safe place to be a child.

I can’t imagine why her parents and other family failed her. I can’t help asking myself, “Why isn’t she mad?” Read the rest of this entry »

Dec
23

You Can’t Rush the Joy of Christmas

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for BEHOLD, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.  ~Luke 2:10

Christmas morning with small children is an experience beyond compare. All parents know that it can bring out the best, and sometimes the worst, in our kids.

I’ll never forget a Christmas morning several years ago, as our three toddler and preschool age girls sat on the couch, blurry-eyed and barely awake. Read the rest of this entry »

Sep
26

I Am a Foster Mom

One of our Home Parent Moms, Merri Heberlein, wrote the following as the heart-wrenching day approached for her to once again say good-bye to a child in her home:

Merri, with her son Lex

I am a foster mom. I fight for re-unification, healing, and restoration. I help my children find forever families. I teach them to walk forward, seeking the light of a future unseen.

I love what I do and am blessed, but I go through many days that are hard. I cry over my children, I pray for them and with them, I listen to their stories, I enjoy their laughter, and I hold them dear. I call them my own, I invite them into a special place in my heart…and then I let them go. Read the rest of this entry »

Aug
12

Kids are a Tough Audience

“I love kids, but they are a tough audience.” ~Robin Williams

Regardless of your feelings about Robin Williams’ passing, that particular quote proved to be true this past Saturday at The Hill.

The MU College of Veterinary Medicine’s Raptor Rehabilitation Project sent a group of three volunteers and four raptors to do an educational presentation for our kids and staff. Over 60 people gathered for the event – the majority of them under the age of 12.

Abby, Denise and Woodrow did a great job answering the WIDE array of questions from our kids!

That created some challenges for the presenters. The normal stuff, like trying to keep everyone quiet and still, was even more imperative around these wild animals who are not accustomed to lots of human noise and activity.

Additional challenges with an audience of children turned out to be rather comical. Oh, the questions children can ask! It began even before the first bird was out of its box. Woodrow, one of the volunteers, was explaining to the kids how they get their birds. Read the rest of this entry »

Apr
25

Shoes on the Wrong Feet

The following conversation happened many years ago between a sweet lady at church and one of our Home Parent Moms.

Lady: “Ma’am, your boy’s shoes are on the wrong feet.”

Mom: “Yes I know, but he tied them himself for the first time today.” Read the rest of this entry »