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mixed tape

Ooh Ooh Child- The Five Stairsteps
TV is Awesome- Fuzzy Machete
Memphis Tennessee- Johnny Rivers
I Wanna be Sedated- The Ramones
Moonage Daydream- David Bowie
Rock N Roll- Velvet Underground
Ever Fallen in Love- Buzzcocks
Hope- Bauhaus
Cherry Bomb- The Runaways
Dream Away Child- Frank Sinatra
Rainbow Connection- Muppets
Ain't no Mountain High Enough
Dancing with Myself- Billy Idol
Into My Arms- Nick Cave
Drums- Johnny Cash
Lucretia My Reflection- Sisters of Mercy
Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds- The Beatles
Vlad the Impaler- Gwar
Midnight Radio- Hedwig

Trying to make things better

I contacted Jessica Kaim Strickland, in hopes of reaching a compromise for a more open adoption. No luck, it's up to her discretion, which means she has the power, and is free to abuse it. I just want to have some contact with my kids, to be able to send them birthday and Christmas presents and know they actually get them. Maybe someday if they want to and all goes well for them to be able to come up to Minnesota for a week in the summer, much like I used to spend a week in the summer at my aunt's campground up north.

I wouldn't want to cut them off from their father's side of the family, because I'm not a horrible person. I wouldn't even tell them what horrible people their paternal relatives are, although I'll be very understanding and listen to them rant about the horrible people who used them as pawns, as trophies, as things without minds and feelings of their own.

I'm amused that this blog came up at the top of a Google search for Jessica Kaim Strickland. Maybe if she was nice to me, I'd set some entries to private. Since that's not likely to happen, I'm going to mention Jessica Kaim Strickland again. Also Jeremy Strickland, aka Vlad Kaim and Breanna or Lucy Strickland, previously Lucretia Charae Kaim. If anyone sees this who knows then, this blog contains the whole story, and I would love to hear from anyone who knows them.


July 3rd 1999: Wedding of Denelle Beauchaine and Nikita Kaim
August 15th 2002: Vladimir (Vlad) Kaim is born
June 24th 2004: Nikk's sister, Jessica Strickland, gets very upset when she finds out that I'm pregnant again. Sandy and Dick Green call us "jerks" for telling her because she'd been trying to conceive and failing.
December 28th 2004: Lucretia (Lucy) Kaim is born.

November 15th 2005: Neighbor calls police because we were arguing, CPS is called because of the messy home, children are sent to stay with Sandy and Dick Green while we clean.
November 19th 2005: Drama when Sandy won't even let us see the kids, Tom Kaim accuses both of us of neglect, claims that Vlad (who had a verbal delay) said "I hate Mommy and Daddy". We decide to severe all connections with Nikk's family.
November 21st 2005: CPS allows kids to return home, case plan of getting drop-in services from Families Inc (or was it Horizons?) worker Marcia.

December 2005: My parents, Bill and Roberta Beauchaine, come down to Iowa for a nice visit.
December 25th 2005: We visit the Greens for Christmas, setting aside hostilities for the holiday.

March 8th 2006: My mother, Roberta Beauchaine is hospitalized, after complications from surgery
March 20th 2006: I create a private group online so I can vent about Nikk and make plans to leave him without him seeing.
March 22nd-27th 2006: I take Lucy to Minnesota to visit Mom in the hospital
April 2006: I got a job at David's Bridal. Nikk gets a job delivering pizza.
May 2006: My Mom died on Mother's Day.

June 2006: Nikk loses driver's license and job.
Summer/fall 2006: I became increasingly frustrated with coming home from work to an unemployed husband who just played video games all day and expected me to come home and take care of the kids and clean the house. When I objected, he'd get violent. He was careful not to leave bruises, and if I scratched or bit him defending myself, he'd laugh and tell me that if I called the cops, I'd be the one that would go to jail. Marcia frequently visits while I'm working, and Nikk tells her that I'm crazy and I make up stories about him being abusive, and that he's concerned about my mental health.
October 2006: I get laid off from David's Bridal, and immediately get hired by Michaels Arts and Crafts.
October 2nd 2006: In a post in my secret group, I say that I hate Nikk and want to leave him but "I'm worried about how he'd react, and remember that women are most likely to be murdered when they try to get out of a bad relationship."

December 18th-31st 2006: I ask for a divorce. Nikk assaults me. I call 911. Marcia arrives at the same time as the police, and tells the officers that I'm crazy and make up stories about domestic violence. The children are sent to stay with Sandy Green, who takes them down to Florida to visit Jessica Stickland. I get a restraining order against Nikk. Sandy refuses to let me have any contact with the kids because of the restraining order, so I get it dropped. Nikk admits to her that he choked me in front of the kids and she replies "Stop making excuses for her."

January 4th 2007: Kids are allowed to come home. Case plan is for us to keep the house clean, continued drop-ins, for me to get counseling, Nikk to get a job, and "no domestic violence", for which we are held equally responsible, no implication that he's the abuser and I'm the victim. Also, mandated daycare, which we were lucky to find Sonya McDonald.

January 26th 2007: We attempt marriage counseling, therapist suggests we just get divorced.
January-March 2007: We attempt to be good enough for CPS, keep the house clean, minimize hostilities, and work on getting a diagnosis for Vlad (I suspected Asperger's). Nikk still doesn't have a job, and still expects me to do most of the housework. I am a nervous wreck, trying to keep the house spotless while resenting that Nikk is still avoiding doing anything productive.

April 10th 2007: After a long day of verbal abuse, I snap when Nikk laughs like Nelson on the Simpsons "Ha ha!" when a small rack falls on my head. I deflect it at him, he gets a small scratch on the back of his neck, and attacks me, breaking my glasses, and hurting my neck. I was afraid for my life, managed to escape, went to Gail and Eric Daniels. When I came back, I was arrested, but no chargers were filed.
April 13th 2007: While I am at work, Nikk has an emergency family team meeting, in which it is decided that I am abusive, a danger to the children, and I am given the choice between going to live with friends or having the children put in foster care.
I agree to go stay with Nate Wesenberg and Megan York. Nikk is allowed to remain home with the children, and expects me to come over to clean while the kids are in daycare. He tried to get me put in the mental hospital, claiming I was psychotic. He harasses me, using his custody of the children to control me. He suspects that I am having an affair with Nate, he hacks my online accounts, threatens to destroy things that belonged to my mother and grandmother, etc. I start participating in STEPS, which is a class/support group for people with BPD. It does help, not because I actually had BPD but by helping me stay calm despite Nikk's button-pushing, crazy-making maipulative behaviors. (Looking back now, I think this whole incident was a power play on Nikk's part, he wanted to take my children and get me locked up, and the fact that CPS and the police cooperated to a degree made him feel victorious and boosted his confidence for future attempts to manipulate the system against me.)
From an entry on April 16th: "It does bother me when he manages to lie, manipulate, distort facts, etc, and get people to believe him and sympathize with him. Maybe I think that if everyone saw what a horrible person he's been and treated him like he deserves until he stopped pulling this bullshit, then maybe he'd realize his actions had consequences and start treating me right and generally doing the things (like GETTING A JOB) that he should have done long ago. Instead, he's got all kinds of people patting him on the head and saying "Good Job!" which lets him know he can get away with it. So, I'll have to play his game or lose the kids. I'll go back to him, and try to follow his rules while he mocks me, taunts me, pushes buttons, screams obscenities at me, etc, until I finally can't take anymore and snap. Then he'll have an excuse to strangle me again."
April 18th: Safety Plan is created.

May 22nd 2007: Vlad wanders off and is picked up blocks away by the police.
I was dropping the kids off, Vlad did not want to go to Daddy's, he wanted to stay at the York/Wesenberg home with me. I got out of the van, and talked to Nikk about plans for the next day. I thought Vlad was still sitting in the van. I had my back to the van, Nikk was facing the van and saw Vlad get out, but he thought Vlad was playing in the sandbox. I was facing the sandbox. Both of us thought the other one could see Vlad, and it took a few minutes before we realized he was gone. It could have happened to anyone with an autistic child- but because it happened to us, and we were already being watched, we knew that our children would go to foster care if CPS found out, so we tried to find Vlad ourselves before calling 911. Vlad has a long history of escape attempts. Like many autistic children, he's resourceful, knows where he wants to go and what he wants to do, and letting anyone know just gives them a chance to stop him. He was halfway back to the York/Wesenberg home when they found him, and since he was still mostly non-verbal, they thought he was lost.
May 23rd 2007: Both children are taken from daycare at Sonya McDonalds to be put in foster care.
At this point, I suggested to Nikk that we separate, and both work our case plans independently, because I knew my chances of getting the children back on my own were better than with him. He refused, and said that if we separated, he would work against me.

June 2007: I get a job at Bulk Bag Services, while staying at Michaels part-time
June-July 2007: The children bounced through a series of foster placements before going to Donna and Casey Johnson. I worked 2 jobs, stayed at the York/Wesenberg home, and saved money for a nicer place that the children could come home to.

August 2007: Children are placed with Donna and Casey, Nikk and I got a townhome, children start having visits there. Nikk gets a part-time job at Arby's.

September 19th: Meeting with permanency board, we were doing everything we were supposed to, DHS hadn't completed paperwork which delayed getting psych evals done. Goal was RU within 12 months.

October 7th: Unsupervised visitation!
October 8th: Case worker Davina Urmie says she's asking for discretion for overnight visits.
October 15th: Court.
Vlad's evaluation blames his problems on his environment, GAL raves about progress he's making in foster home, and concerned about RU undoing that.  Judge concerned about inconsistency of services, asks us to get couples counseling, and I request that Nikk get counseling, knowing that unless he was forced to take responsibility, I was doomed. Jessica Strickland had contacted DHS about her concerns about our parenting, and to let them know that she wanted our kids. (Since Jessica Strickland lived in Florida and had only seen us with our children a few times, and had very little contact with us, any opinion she had on our parenting was based on secondhand information, probably Sandy Green.)

November 14th 2007: Vlad diagnosed with Aspergers.  I had suspected for years, and this goes counter to the evaluation submitted to court the previous month, which blamed his environment for his behavioral issues. His foster mother, Donna Johnson, had agreed with my suspicions, as had his teachers, and we'd been using that as a guide for dealing with his behavior, trying weighted vests, allowing him to sit on a rocker instead of a standard chair, and realizing that understanding his sensory issues was a big part of modifying his behavior, like having him wear boxers instead of breifs because they felt less like pull-ups.
November 23rd 2007: Psych eval results. I give Nikk the ultimatum of getting counseling or getting a divorce. Before he has a chance to get physically abusive, I go to stay at the York/Wesenberg house.

December 1st 2007: Nikk admits that he has a problem and starts getting help.
December 18th 2007: Family Team Meeting.
Due to the temporary separation in November, and the psych eval results, DHS suddenly views our relationship as unstable, suspects a danger of domestic violence, puts us back on supervised visits, and threatens TPR if Nikk does not move out. After all those months of applauding us for sweeping our problems under the rug, they finally see the problem because we are dealing with it. I request a different lawyer.
December 25th 2007: Christmas visit is cancelled because CPS does not get paperwork submitted to give foster parents permission to supervise. Sandy and Dick Green are allowed to see the children on Christmas, at the Johnson family home.

January 20th 2008: Donna Johnson threatens to have children moved to another foster home after Davina Urmie threatens to yank the Johnson's foster care license because Donna can't transport Vlad to all appointments. Donna loves the kids, but doesn't "want to worry about losing her license every time Davina gets PMS."  Davina had falsified paperwork, and there had been many times, including Christmas, that visits got missed because of lack of supervisors for visits, and CPS refusing to allow foster parents to supervise. This is disappointing to the children, especially Vlad, people with Aspergers thrive on routine, and any disruption in routines can lead to meltdowns. Donna makes it very clear that her problem is with Davina Urmie, not us or the children.

February 13th 2008: Court, judge grants us an extension, but reminds us that we are running out of time and that permanency needs to be addressed at the next court date. We are frustrated because it seems like CPS is deliberately wasting time to try to run out the ASFA clock.

March 2nd 2008: Increase in visits, and I start picking Vlad up from school to take him to play therapy.
March 10th 2008 Davina Urmie insists Nikk can not come with when I transport kids because "it would be difficult to monitor".
March 12th 2008: Email from Davina Urmie about daycare arrangments while children are being transitioned home, with overnight visits starting at the end of the month.

April 2008: Overnight visits, with a day being added each week

April 26th 2008: Nikk is hospitalized with a displaced strep infection,  and spends a week in a medically induced coma in the ICU. He almost died, and is weak, easily exhausted and unable to work or be much help at home for months.

May 2008: Overnight visits continue to increase, until children are home full-time. Kelly Morgan takes over as our case worker.

June 2008: Cedar Rapids flood. Donna and Casey's wedding. We take children to Minnesota to visit my family.

July 2008: Due to the flood, my hours at Bulk Bag Services are reduced, and I get unemployment. Our major clients, Cargill and Penford, were flooded, and it takes another year for things to get back to normal.
July 14th 2008: Vlad slips out of daycare unnoticed, and makes it all the way home, 15 blocks, without anyone coming to find him, notifying authorities, etc.

August 10th 2008: Vlad gets upset and punches his guinea pig, and kills it. We are all concerned.

September 2nd 2008: I post about being stressed out. After Nikk got out of the coma, his attitude changed, all the progress he'd made between December and April seemed to get lost, he stopped getting counseling, and there were several incidents where his temper scared me and the the kids, times I took the kids over to the York/Wesenberg house because I was afraid Nikk might get violent, and I didn't report these problems because I knew that CPS would just take the kids, instead of empowering me to force Nikk to move out. Between Nikk losing his job due to health issues, and my temporary lay-off due to the flood, we have financial problems, which add to the overall stress.

October 2008: Court Judge is concerned about situation, and says that she will go over social worker's head and put kids back in foster care if she doesn't see improvment from both of us. I feel doomed, because I was already trying as hard as I could, but couldn't do anything to change Nikk's lack of motivation or bad temper. I was depressed, stuck in a miserable marriage, and knew the situation was bad for the kids, but I couldn't do anything about it since CPS had punished me on previous occasions when I reported domestic violence or left Nikk to get away from it. I didn't know what to do.
October 29th 2008: Children are removed while I am at work. Social worker Kelly Morgan and GAL Cindy Finley come for a scheduled check-up on the kids. Nikk is upstairs and does not come down to check on kids for at least 45 minutes. He makes excuses, but I believe he did it on purpose. He knew I wanted a divorce, and he wanted to make sure I lost the kids, so he got them put back in foster care. Donna Johnson is contacted as a possible emergency placement, but insists that the kids can only come to her home if they're going to stay until they are RU'd or adopted, she's not going to be just a temporary placement until they can find another foster home. The kids are then placed with another foster family. Donna and I believe that CPS didn't want the kids with her because she was supportive of reunification.

December 9th 2008: We find out that because the kids were home on a trial home placement, the AFSA clock to TPR was still ticking, and had run out. Nikk tells me that if I file for divorce, he will work against me, manipulating the system as easily as he had all along (he calls it "people chess"), and that he'd make sure that I was TPR'd, so that his sister, Jessica Strickland, could adopt the children and brainwash them to hate me.
December 10th 2008: When I still want a divorce despite Nikk's threats, he moves out.

January 5th 2009: I file for divorce
January 23rd 2009: Family Team Meeting. My decision to get divorced is supported, old social worker Davina Urmie passes the message that she's cheering for me since I finally left him. (So frustrating! Why couldn't she have given me support to get out safely back in early 2007???)  Plan is made for Nate Wesenberg, Megan York, Eric and Gail Daniels to come over and help me clean up the mess that Nikk left, re-organize, and give emotional support, since it's not just a matter of doing everyday cleaning, it's going through everything in the house after the children were removed and Nikk left. Anyone who has lost a family member should be able to understand how emotionally-laden a task this is, but in the final TPR report, this event is made to look like I was just incompetant to do my own housework so I needed my friends to clean my house for me, which is far from the truth. As part of this effort, we find new homes for most of the pets Nikk had accumulated.  Also, Jessica Strickland is already convinced that she's going to adopt my children, and lashes out in anger against me when I tell her that I am working my case plan and still trying to get my kids home.
January 29th 2009: Pre-trial hearing. I submit a report on my efforts,  showing everything I've done in the 6 weeks since he left, and all I plan to do to make a good home for my children in the future. Nikk complains about not getting visits since he's living 100 miles away in Clinton and has no transportation. He objects to me getting additionaly visits at the Daniels home, claiming that they have constant orgies going on in their living room. He tells Megan York that he's going to report her and Nate to CPS with claims that they live in squallor and their house is full of black mold. Nikk's lawyer attempts to get children placed with Nikk's mother, Sandy Green, and is refused.
After court, I go over to the York/Wesenberg home and help get their place sparkling clean. Nikk also reports Donna and Casey with false claims that they abused a foster child.

March 18th 2009 Court doesn't go well, vague concerns about my ability to keep the home clean, and problems with Vlad's behavior getting worse. I also find out that Sandy Green and Jessica Strickland have been telling the children that they are going to move down to Florida to live with Jessica, as if the TPR had already taken place and it was all set in stone.
March 24th: Sandy Green has kids for spring break, I'm supposed to go there to see them, and I want Megan York and her 3 year old D to come with, because I wanted a witness. Sandy had been hostile towards me during previous visits at her home during winter break, and had put false information into her report to make me look bad. Sandy refused to let them come in, even though the children wanted to see D. Kelly Morgan got involved, and decided no more visits supervised by Sandy after that. Sandy had been openly supportive of TPR so Jessica Strickland could adopt them going back to our first incident in November 2005.

April 7th 2009: TPR Trial The case against me focuses on how long it took me to leave Nikk, and on minor housekeeping issues, like a bottle of glass cleaner left on top of a TV "dangerous chemicals in children's reach", and a blanket that Lucy had grabbed out of a closet at the end of a visit that the foster mother said smelled like cat urine. I submit a scrapbook as evidence of what kind of a parent I am, showing things I do with my kids. Megan York and Gail Daniels testify on my behalf, and are questioned as if having close friends who help each other out with child care and housework is somehow suspicious. There are no accusations of neglect or abuse, instead it focuses on my ability to make it on my own as a single mother, which is hard for me to prove since I was only allowed 2 hours a week of fully supervised visits since Nikk left.
April 23rd 2009: TPR Trial part 2. Nikk commits perjury, no one cares.

May 1st 2009: I move out of the townhome and into the York/Wesenberg home, after 4 months of paying rent on a big empty townhome full of memories, no increase in visitation or decrease in supervision, and spending more of my time at the York/Wesenberg household than in the townhome. My intention is to get my own apartment if I'm actually being given a chance at getting the kids back, but without a glimmer of hope, it seems pointless to spend $700 on rent.
May 2009: Divorce is final, my name is changed back to Denelle Beauchaine.

June 24th 2009: After months of harassment, accusations that I'm trying to alienate the children, etc, I attempt to get a restraining order since Nikk is back in Iowa. It is refused.

July 15th 2009: Court I am told to get my own apartment, since living in the York/Wesenberg house is seen as me being homeless and unable to provide for my children. I tried to explain that I contributed financially to the household, I did more than my share of housework, and helped with the children. By being a functioning member of a household with children, I was actually keeping myself in the habits that I needed to be a single mother, instead of living alone and only having to clean up after kids 2 hours a week. At the time, I did not want to admit how much Nate and Megan were struggling, they'd been investigated by CPS 3 times due to Nikk's false reports, Megan had health issues, and Nate was working long hours because they were trying to avoid foreclosure. I was trying to help them keep their house, and didn't want to alert CPS to their problems and risk them losing their kids too. My kids were more important than my friends, but sitting alone in my own apartment watching Netflix wasn't helping my kids, and spending the same time during the York/Wesenberg's laundry was helping them.

August 5th 2009: I get my own efficiency apartment, it's big enough for visitations, rented on a month to month basis. I explain to Kelly Morgan that if visitation is increased, supervision is decreased, and my case is progressing towrads reunification, then I will get a bigger apartment that the kids can come home to. I did not want to sign a 12 month lease on a 2 bedroom apartment and then get TPR'd and be stuck paying rent. However, I never actually lived in this efficiency apartment, just used it for visits. I didn't feel safe there, just in case Nikk did find out where I lived, I was safer at the York/Wesenberg house.

October 23rd 2009: Vlad gets officially diagnosed with Aspergers and ADHD, and is given a persciption for a medication normally used for blood pressure. Previously, there had been controversy about the Aspergers diagnosis because of his verbal delay, but since it was an atypical verbal delay, it fit the criteria for Aspergers. He could talk, he just only wanted to talk about dinosaurs.

November 16th 2009: Court focuses on the fact that I'm not spending enough time at my apartment, CPS feels I need to show that I can clean up after myself, as if it was a challenge. I feel insulted, and like I've been sentenced to solitary confinement. Still no increase in visits, no decrease in supervision, and no new tasks that I could do for my caseplan. I suspect that they're trying to set me up to fail- if I get used to living alone as a single woman, and I'm distanced from my support network, then the children came home, it would be a big, overwhelming adjustment.

January 2010: I have concerns about parental alienation, after children tell me during a visit "Mommy, you hit Daddy and made him go away and if you let him come back and live with you, then we could come home and be a family again." I responded in the Mr Roger's recommended fashion, explaining that Daddy and I are not together, reminding them that we used to yell at each other, and that both of us are happier living apart, but we still both love them.

March 4th 2010: Letter from Kelly Morgan:"Hi Denelle, I am concerned that if we increase visitation the kids will have more behaviors. They continue to have issues after every visit from being defiant and aggressive to not listening at school the next day. I continue to believe that many of the same concerns that existed a year ago are still there today and are your issues. I have had no contact with NIk since Christmas, when I informed him he could not see the kids on Christmas, so I’m not sure what you are referring to. Not only have I had concerns about the size of your apartment but the Court has pointed this out also. Thanks, Kelly Morgan"
Friends who are divorced assure me that behavioral issues are common after visits with non-custodial parents.
March 9th 2010: My parental rights are terminated. Kelly Morgan notifies me via voicemail.

TPR doc




D.O.B. 8-15-02 )






D.O.B. 12-28-04 )





This matter came before the Court for hearing on the State’s Petition for termination

of parental rights. Present representing the State of Iowa was Assistant Linn County Attorney

Robert Hruska. The children were not present but were represented by attorney and guardian

ad litem Cindy Finley. The children’s mother, Denelle Kaim, was present personally and was

represented by attorney Kara McFadden. The children’s father, Nikita Kaim, was not personally

present but was represented by attorney Henry Keyes. Kelly Morgan was present on behalf of

the Iowa Department of Human Services. The children’s paternal grandparents appeared also.

The State moved to amend the petition to include allegations pursuant to Iowa Code

Section 232.116(1)(f). Hearing no objection, the amendment was allowed.

The matter proceeded to hearing and the Court received testimony and evidence,

including State’s Exhibits 1 and 2, the affidavit prepared by Kelly Morgan which was attached to

the petition, and Mother’s Exhibits A and B. At the close of evidence, the Court indicated that a

written ruling would be provided.


This Court has jurisdiction of Vladimir Kaim and Lucretia Kaim. Vladimir Kaim is

a seven year old child, having been born on August 15, 2002. Lucretia Kaim was born on

December 28, 2004 and is five years old. The children’s interests in these proceedings were

represented by attorney and guardian ad litem Cindy Finley.

 Denelle Kaim and Nikita Kaim were each given due and timely notice of the

proceedings. Nikita is represented by attorney Henry Keyes in the termination action as well

as in the underlying child in need of assistance action. Denelle is represented by attorney Kara

McFadden in the termination action as well as the underlying child in need of assistance action.

The Court has jurisdiction as to the parties in interest.

 Vladimir and Lucretia Kaim are the children of Nikita and Denelle Kaim. This family

first came to the attention of the Department of Human Services in 2003 through a child abuse

assessment that was unfounded. In total, the Kaim family has been the subject of at least nine

child abuse assessments with at least four founded reports for denial of critical care due to either

the condition of the family home, domestic violence or lack of supervision of the children. On

November 15, 2005, police officers were called to the Kaim home because of a domestic

disturbance. The officers went into the home and became concerned for the safety of the children

due to the condition of the home, so the Department of Human Services was called. Police

officer Stone observed and provided the following description in his written report:

“While taking pictures of the residence and

determining the safety of the children I observed cigarette papers on

the floor, small pieces of wood which Nikita advised was from his

son tearing apart a chest that was made of wicker. Clothes were

strewn on the floor and appeared to have not had laundry done in

weeks. Nikita had commented that finances were tight and money

was not there to clean clothes. On the couch was a piece of 2x4

which was unknown where or what it had come from. A piece of

wood that was on the floor was picked up by Lucretia while in

Denelle’s arms. Denelle did not notice what the child had picked up

until mentioned by officers. The piece of wood was later found

thrown on the bed of the parent’s in the next room and was observed

with two rather long nails protruding from it. At any time that could

have poked the child and injured her face or body. The kitchen had

dishes all over the sink. Dirt infested water filled the sink. The high

chair for Lucretia to sit at supper time was caked with dried food and

gnats, cat food and water was on the top of the table as was the cat at

the time of call. The garbage was full and the wall behind it was

gunked with dried liquids and food particles. The stove was caked

with food and between the stove and fridge was a black gunk that

appeared to have been spilled foods and oils. The refrigerator was

full, but had spoiled food and was moldy and dirt infested. It was

apparent that the house had not been picked up in months possible a

year or more. …Nikita and Denelle were unable to stop verbally

arguing in the presence of DHS.”

 At the time this incident occurred, Nikita was employed and Denelle was providing

primary care to the children. Denelle and Nikita reported concerns with Vladimir’s behavior and

said that they were begging for help with Vladimir. Denelle said that she could not take care of

the children and do all of the housework. The Department of Human Services arranged with the

family for the children to be placed temporarily with their paternal grandmother while the

parents cleaned the home. Approximately two weeks later, the Department of Human Services

returned to the home and found that the parents had cleaned the home such that it was

determined to be safe for the children to reside there. Two weeks following that, the Department

of Human Services received another report alleging that the home was again unsafe for the

children. The Department immediately sent a social worker out to observe the home, and she

reported that conditions had indeed deteriorated since the children were returned home. She

observed small objects on the floor e.g. pennies, pieces of rattan. She also observed that the

home was very cluttered, with pathways through piles of clothing on the floor. The garbage was

overflowing. The parents were advised as to the cleaning that needed to be done so that the

children could remain in the home and they agreed to complete the task. The Department

completed a child abuse assessment a founded report was placed upon the register for denial of

critical care, lack of appropriate shelter, with both parents responsible. The family agreed to

participate in voluntary services offered by the Department of Human Services, which included

parenting, protective daycare and drop in supervision.

On December 18, 2006, the Department of Human Services received another report

alleging that the children’s home was a health and safety hazard. On that date, Marion Police

officers were called to the family home due to a report of domestic abuse between Nikita and

Denelle. The police officers noted that the children were in close proximity to the domestic

violence and also that the condition of the home created a health and safety hazard for the

children. The police officers contacted the Department of Human Services and social worker

Roberta Hinman was assigned to complete another child abuse assessment. Roberta observed

and reported the following:

“As this worker entered the home’s living room area, I

could not walk in a clear path. There were so many items: i.e.

clothes, toys and food on the floor it was difficult to walk through the

home. The police stated the parents had agreed to have Nick’s

mother, Sandra Green, come to the home to pick up the children for

the weekend to allow the parents time to clean the home…..The

police stated there was cat feces on the floor, as well as very stained

carpet. It appeared the animals did their “daily duty” and it was never

cleaned in the living room and dining room area. The floors had

many objects that a young child could put in their mouth and choke

(small toy parts, batteries, pennies, pins, staples and other small

debris). In the kitchen, there were no clean dishes, there was mold on

the cupboards and in the kitchen sink. Officers opened the

refrigerator and there was moldy food. The refrigerator and kitchen

looked as if they had not been cleaned in a long time. Someone had

made something in a blender, it spilled down the cupboard, and it was

just left there to turn to mold. There was no clean space on the

kitchen counter. The kitchen floor was cluttered, very dirty with

cans, food containers with moldy food in them were on the floor as

well as on top of the stove. There were fruit flies in the kitchen as

well. There was a high chair in the kitchen that was very dirty with

layers of food dried and crusted on it. It seemed the daughter ate in

her high chair, but it was not cleaned each time she ate her meals.

There was also garbage overflowing in several areas of the home

which had a foul smell as if it had not been taken outside for

sometime. The bedrooms were full of items, and I was unsure where

children could even sleep with so much clutter. The clutter was also

piled high, and could fall on small children hurting them. The parents

bedroom door could not be opened as there was so much clutter and

clothes in the room. If there was fire, I am not sure how fast the

parents could get to the children to assist them. The bathroom was

dirty and unsanitary. I am not sure how anyone could be clean after

taking a bath as it looked like no one cleaned the bathroom in months.

I told the parents the home was unfit for children to live in and

needed cleaning before the children could come home. The parents

began to scream at each other for not cleaning. Denelle stated she

works part-time and Nick refuses to clean. Nick does not have

employment. Both parents stood in front of the police, this worker

and the children and screamed at each other.”

 At the time of this incident, Nikita was no longer working and was providing primary

care of the children while Denelle had part time employment. Roberta met with the family and

determined that the children could not remain in the family home until it was cleaned. Roberta

then assisted Nikita and Denelle in developing a plan for the children. Nikita and Denelle

agreed that Vladimir and Lucretia would again stay temporarily with their paternal grandmother,

Sandra Green, while they worked to improve the condition of their home. After completing her

child abuse assessment, Roberta Hinman determined that the allegations of denial of critical care

were accurate and another founded report of child abuse, with Nikita and Denelle as responsible

parties, was placed upon the registry.

Vladimir and Lucretia again returned to their parent’s home by early January of 2007.

However, Roberta Hinman remained concerned regarding the children’s safety given the number

of child abuse assessments completed regarding the same issue and due to the fact that the

parents were continuing to struggle with maintaining the cleanliness of their home. Additionally,

Roberta identified issues regarding Denelle’s mental health and Nikita’s physical health as issues

which needed to be addressed to assure the safety and welfare of the children. As a result of her

concerns regarding ongoing safety of the children, Roberta initiated a child in need of assistance

petition for Vladimir and Lucretia.

At hearing held on April 27, 2007, all parties stipulated that Vladimir and Lucretia should

be adjudicated to be children in need of assistance pursuant to Iowa Code Sections 232.2(6)

(c)(2), (6)(g) and (6)(n). The Court was informed at that hearing that due to domestic abuse

charges, the parents were no longer residing together. Denelle was residing with friends and

Nikita remained in the family home with the children. Nikita and Denelle continued, however,

to share care of the children. Pending disposition, the Court ordered that the parents should not

be together with the children unless they were in a public place or supervised by a neutral third

party. The Court also ordered mental health evaluations for both parents. The parents were

working with a number of services, including parenting instruction, drop in supervision, referrals

for domestic violence counseling, mental health evaluations and individual counseling, and

daycare services, in effort to prevent the need to remove the children from the parent’s care.

On May 22, 2007, while dispositional hearing was pending, Denelle was at the family

residence to return the children to their father. Denelle and Nikita began arguing and failed to

notice when Vladimir, who was then aged four, walked away from their home. Vladimir was

located approximately four blocks from home, at a busy intersection, by Marion Police Officers.

The police contacted the Department of Human Services and social worker Cathy Razavi was

assigned to complete a child abuse assessment. Just a few days prior to this incident, Vladimir

was found, alone and unsupervised at the public library. On that earlier occasion, Vladimir had

again left the family home unnoticed and walked several blocks on his own. When Cathy Razavi

arrived at the Kaim home, she observed and reported the following:

“While in the home I was able to observe the home to be

filthy, cluttered with clothing, paper, boxes, and hangers strewn all

over the floor. I was able to identify that food was sitting out on

the countertops. I observed macaroni in a bowl that was hardened

and appeared to be several days old. There was dirty dishes on the

countertops and table. There was food particles on the carpet. The

carpet was filthy. After standing in one place and then stepping to

another, I could feel my shoes sticking to the floor. The home was

extremely warm with small insects identified. There was no clean

surface to prepare food. I observed straight pins on the floor. The

back door contained a piece of broken plexiglass that was attempted

to be sealed with caulk. The home has a front door that had boxes in

front of it. I was able to note that the kitchen trash was overflowing

and spilling over on the floor. The home reeked of stale garbage and

dirty diapers. The condition of the home did not meet even the lowest

level of safety for two and four year old children. Outside the side

door, there was a trash bag ripped open with food and diapers seeping

out. It had attracted approximately a dozen flies. The front exit has

no stairs to walk out.”

The Department of Human Services determined that the children could no longer be

safely maintained in their parent’s care and an order to remove the children from parental

custody was requested. That order was granted and the children were placed in foster family

care pending disposition.

Nikita and Denelle had earlier requested that Vladimir be evaluated for Asperger’s

syndrome, as they believed that his behavior supported that diagnosis. In addition to the

parent’s difficulty with maintaining supervision of Vladimir, his behavior was becoming more

aggressive. Dr. Sinda Eggerman completed an evaluation in May of 2007. Dr. Eggerman

concluded that Vladimir’s problems were primarily environmental in nature. She concluded

that, if Vladimir was in a more consistent and positive environment, he would not be showing

the symptoms that he showed, except for his language delay. She recommended that Vladimir

participate in individual therapy.

 Dispositional hearing was held on May 31, 2007 and June 6, 2007. Dispositional order

was entered on June 12, 2007 and the Court ordered that the children remain in foster family care

due to the condition of the family home, the volatile nature of the parents’ relationship, and the

parents’ difficulty in providing the children with adequate supervision. Additionally, Denelle

and Nikita were about to be evicted and had no immediate plan for housing. Denelle and Nikita

decided that they wanted to resume living together as soon as they could locate housing.

Denelle and Nikita were each required to complete a mental health evaluation and follow

through with recommended treatment. Nikita’s evaluation was completed by Dr. Ronald Nelson

on September 17, 2007. Dr. Nelson noted that Nikita had a past diagnosis of post traumatic

stress disorder, related to early childhood abuse. However, Dr. Nelson found no significant

symptoms of that condition at the time of the evaluation. Dr. Nelson reported that Nikita was of

average intelligence, cognitively intact and presently free of any marked emotional disturbance.

Dr. Nelson also reported that Nikita’s test results indicated that Nikita had a tendency to over

control anger to the point that it is expressed in either passive-aggressive manners and/or verbal

outbursts of aggression. Dr. Nelson stated concerns regarding Nikita’s marital situation because

of the level of anger, verbal and even physical aggression. However, Dr. Nelson recommended

that Nikita participate in individual therapy focusing on anger issues and personality issues prior

to relationship therapy.

Denelle’s evaluation was completed on August 21, 2007 by Dr. Paul Eggerman. Dr.

Eggerman’s diagnosis included personality disorder with borderline features, and depressive

disorder, in remission. Dr. Eggerman found no current symptoms of depression, and noted that

Denelle reported that her depression symptoms were seasonal, and that she took medication in

the fall and winter. Dr. Eggerman noted that Denelle had superior intellectual functioning and at

least some superficial social skills. His biggest concern was Denelle’s relationship with Nikita

and that she might not be entirely realistic in terms of how she assesses that relationship. Dr.

Eggerman recommended relationship therapy and individual therapy for Denelle.

By August of 2007, Denelle and Nikita had obtained a new residence and both were

working. Although their new home was also somewhat messy, it was not the health and safety

hazard that their previous residence was. Denelle and Nikita maintained regular visitation with

the children and the visitation progressed to semi-supervised visitation in the fall of 2007. Nikita

and Denelle participated in individual and couples counseling. However, their relationship

continued to be unstable. In November of 2007, police were called to their home due to a report

of domestic disturbance. Nikita and Denelle repeatedly engaged in loud verbal arguments which

were witnessed by others, including the children. The couple decided to separate, then to

reunite. The visitation was returned to fully supervised status. However, when Nikita began to

participate in therapy with Virgil Gooding, the couple’s relationship began to improve. Mr.

Gooding recommended that the couple continue in intensive therapy for a long time to develop a

healthy relationship. In a report filed with the Court in January of 2008, the Department of

Human Services recommended that efforts toward family reunification continue.

On May 30, 2008, Vladimir and Lucretia began a trial home placement with their

parents. As part of the plan for the trial home placement, the Department of Human Services

arranged for protective daycare for the children. Denelle and Nikita were living together and

maintaining suitable housing. Denelle was employed, working at two part time jobs. Nikita was

not working. In home parenting services and drop in supervision was also provided to the


On August 17, 2008, Vladimir was found on the median of Highway 100 in Marion.

Police officers were called, and recognizing Vladimir from earlier incidents, they went to the

parent’s home. When they arrived, Nikita refused to allow the police officers into the home

without a warrant. He told the police officers that the home was not in order. Nikita told police

officers that he was cooking and hadn’t noticed that Vladimir was gone. Denelle told police

officers that they noticed Vladimir was not in the house when it was time to sit down for dinner.

Denelle left the house to look for Vladimir as the police were returning him to the home. After

Vladimir was returned to his parents, Nikita called him a “fucking retard” and a “piece of shit”.

 The Department of Human Services was contacted and child abuse assessor Roberta

Fuchs came to the home. She observed old food on the floor, clothes all over the floor, garbage

in the living room and kitchen, dirty dishes and old food on the kitchen table and counters.

Roberta told the parents that the home needed to be cleaned for the children to be safe, but she

did not remove the children from the home.

 Within two weeks of Roberta’s contact, the family home continued to be a health and

safety hazard. To assist the family in maintaining the children, Kelly Morgan, the Department of

Human Services case manager assigned to work with this family, and Eric Lehman, the in home

service provider, went to the Kaim’s home to help them clean. They observed cigarette butts in

the children’s room. They observed cat feces throughout the apartment. Nikita and Denelle told

them they had taken six or seven cats to the humane shelter, but planned to keep the four

remaining in their home. The home was cluttered and generally unclean. After helping to get the

home cleaned up, Kelly Morgan advised Nikita and Denelle that they needed to maintain the

home in that condition for the trial home placement to continue.

Throughout the trial home placement, Denelle and Nikita continued to have serious

difficulties with their relationship. They blamed each other for the condition of the home and the

problems with supervision of the children. Denelle accused Nikita of playing video games all

day when he should be cleaning up the home. Nikita accused Denelle of spending all of her time

on the computer when she was home, rather than helping with household chores. Neither parent

took responsibility for the condition of the home and the need to supervise the children. Their

conflicts over these issues led to frequent arguments. On August 25, 2008, the police were again

called to their home due to a domestic disturbance. Nikita and Denelle agreed to return to

couples counseling.

Other issues of concern during the trial home placement included the cleanliness of the

children, Vladimir’s increasing aggression, and the family’s financial stability. Daycare and

school personnel reported that the children were not clean and that they were not dressed

appropriately. Vladimir came to school without underwear or with dirty underwear on. Vladimir

became upset with his mother because she would not read to him and he either hit or squeezed

the family’s pet guinea pig, which died the next day. After this incident, Nikita called Vladimir

a murderer and compared him to Jeffrey Dahmer. The family planned a funeral for the guinea

pig, which Vladimir would not be allowed to attend. Vladimir also threatened to kill Lucretia,

resulting in the parents having Lucretia sleep in the living room rather than in the room shared

with Vladimir. In general, the children did not follow their parent’s directions. They were prone

to tantruming when things do not go their way and their parents continued to have difficulty in

managing and modifying this behavior. Nikita continued to be unemployed and the family was

without sufficient income to meet basic needs. Their utility bills went unpaid. The family also

reported concerns regarding having enough food. Despite all these issues, the Department of

Human Services continued to support the children’s placement with the parents and continued to

work with the parents to remedy the issues which caused the children to continue to be at risk of

harm so as to prevent another removal of these children from parental care.

On October 27, 2008, Kelly Morgan and Cindy Finley, the children’s attorney, had a

scheduled appointment to meet with the family at their home. Cindy Finley arrived on time and

was let into the home by the children. Cindy called out several times, trying to locate an adult in

the home, but received no response. After about twenty five minutes, Kelly Morgan arrived at

the home. Kelly instructed Vladimir to go upstairs and get his dad, which Vladimir did. Nikita

then came downstairs and apologized to Kelly and Cindy, saying that he was upstairs cleaning.

Nikita stated that Denelle left for work and did not set the door alarms as she should have. Kelly

talked to Nikita about the fact that while he was upstairs, the children were totally unsupervised

downstairs for at least a half an hour. Kelly informed Nikita that she was ending the trial home

placement and she made arrangements for the children to be returned to foster family care.

Initially, following the children’s return to foster family care, Nikita and Denelle planned

to continue to live together and work to have the children returned to their care together.

However, by early December 2008, Nikita moved from the family home to Clinton, where he

resided with a brother. Nikita reported to the Department that the home where he was staying

would not be appropriate for the children. Denelle remained in the family apartment. She was

able to get financial assistance from her father to maintain the home. Denelle agreed to

participate in individual counseling, domestic violence counseling and parenting and she has

done so.

 Denelle had difficulty getting the home cleaned, but by late January of 2009, after

enlisting the help of friends, she had made considerable progress and Denelle’s visitation with

the children returned to the home. Since then, Nick Dusil, the service provider supervising the

visitation, testified that the condition of the home is regressing, although it is not currently

unsafe. The most recent concerns noted by Nick included the presence of chemicals in an area

accessible to the children and Lucretia finding and taking back to her foster home a blanket

soaked with cat urine. Nick also has ongoing concerns regarding Denelle’s ability to supervise

both of the children at the level they require. He testified that his supervision of the visitation

continues to be necessary to assure that the children are safe.

Denelle has also continued to have financial issues. Heat to her apartment was shut off

just prior to the beginning of this hearing, when she failed to make a payment. Denelle has other

unpaid utility bills. Denelle has continued to be marginally employed. Denelle has been offered

assistance with budgeting and money management, but she has declined that service.

 Nikita has since moved to Virginia, and has had no in person contact with the children

since Christmas of 2008. He is not participating in any of the services offered by the Department

of Human Services. Although the parents are not currently having in person contact, Denelle

reports that Nikita continues to harass her via telephone and the internet. Denelle states that it is

her intent to obtain a divorce from Nikita. Nikita testified that he is not in a position to take care

of his children. It is also his opinion that Denelle is also unable to take care of the children.

Nikita testified in support of termination of parental rights and placement for adoption. It is his

hope that the children would be placed with paternal relatives.

Denelle testified that she is ready to resume care of the children. Denelle testified to her

belief that, now that Nikita is no longer living with her, she will be able to maintain the house,

supervise the children and provide them with adequate food, clothing and shelter. However, in

assessing Denelle’s ability to meet the basic needs of her children, even absent the stress of her

relationship with Nikita, the Court comes to a different conclusion. Denelle has a several year

history of being unable to maintain a safe and sanitary home for her children. While the

dynamics of the relationship between Nikita and Denelle contributed to that situation, Nikita’s

absence does not necessarily remedy the situation. Even after Nikita moved away, Denelle was

unable to get her home cleaned up. With assistance of friends to tell her what to do, she was able

to do so at the end of January so that visitation with the children could occur in the family home.

However, after that clean up, Nick Dusil testified that the condition of the home has regressed.

This is the same pattern of behavior which led to the removal of the children. Denelle does not

recognize health and safety hazards on her own and has not shown the ability to consistently

address health and safety issues without supervision. She has continued to have difficulty

supervising both children.

 Denelle clearly focuses on Nikita as the source of the family’s problems. While Nikita

certainly bears significant responsibility for the conditions of the home, the lack of supervision

and attention to the children, and the dysfunctional relationship between him and Denelle,

Denelle also bears responsibility for those things. Both Nikita and Denelle were, at times, the

responsible for initiating the incidents of physical and verbal aggression that occurred between

them. Both Denelle and Nikita had the ability to take care of basic household duties, but both

chose not to, and then chose to point the finger at the other. Both Denelle and Nikita were

responsible for incidents where the children were not adequately supervised. Denelle’s lack of

insight as to her responsibility for the children’s care and her belief that without Nikita in the

home, the safety issues for these children have been eliminated, is very concerning.

Vladimir and Lucretia each have special needs. They both have speech deficits. Vladimir

may have some form of autism. The children require a higher than average level of structure and

supervision. The children are bonded to their mother and have shown the ability to bond to

others. The lack of permanency for these children contributes to their behavioral issues.

Clearly, neither of these children could be placed with either parent without remaining a

child in need of assistance. Nikita acknowledges that he is not able to meet the children’s basic

needs and that he cannot resume care of the children. Nikita has not maintained consistent

contact with the children. Nikita has not shown that he has addressed his own adult issues, which

would assist him in being able to resume care of the children. Nikita and Denelle’s relationship

has included both physical and verbal aggression and both Nikita and Denelle have been the

aggressor in these incidents. Denelle clearly would like to have a continuing relationship with

the children. Unfortunately, she is not currently able to provide for their basic needs and that is

very unlikely to change in the near future. Denelle has not demonstrated the ability to maintain

safe, clean housing without supervision and assistance. She has not consistently demonstrated

the ability to supervise the children. Lucretia and Vladimir require more consistency and

structure than average and neither parent is able to provide this.

Vladimir and Lucretia are adoptable children. They are young and personable. The

children each have behavioral and emotional difficulties and require a heightened degree of

structure and supervision. The children clearly are in need of permanent placement, a sense of

security and consistent, effective parenting.


Having fully reviewed the evidence and having entered findings of fact, the Court finds

that the State has met its burden of proof in establishing that statutory grounds for termination of

the parental rights of both Nikita and Denelle exist in this case pursuant to Iowa Code Sections

232.116 (1)(d) and (f). Further, the Court finds that the State has met its burden of proof in

establishing that statutory grounds for termination of parental rights of the Nikita Kaim exists in

this case pursuant to Iowa Code Sections 232.116(1)(a).

The Court, having found that the State has established statutory grounds to support

its contention that the parents’ rights should be terminated, must now consider whether the

termination would be in the best interests of these children. Iowa Code sections 232.116(2) and

232.116(3). The Court must base its decision on each parent’s history, not just their promises

at trial. The Court must make a determination as to what the future most likely holds for these

children if returned to the care of a parent.

The best evidence for this determination is the parent’s past performance because that

performance may indicate the quality of future care they are capable of giving. In re: J.K. and

J.K. 495 NW 2d 108 (Iowa 1993), citing In re M.M. 483 NW 2d 812, 814 (Iowa 1992).

unlikely that a child would be safe or have their basic needs met on a long-term basis if placed in

the care of either their mother or either father. Nikita has abandoned his children. He has not

demonstrated the ability to meet their basic needs. He has a history of inadequate supervision of

the children and has not demonstrated that this has improved. Nikita is not able to provide the

children with suitable housing and was not able to progress to unsupervised visitation. Denelle

continues to voice a strong commitment to her children and to resuming their care. However,

Denelle has not demonstrated the ability to meet the children’s basic needs on a consistent,

everyday basis. Denelle has not been able to provide the children with safe, clean housing and

has not been able to progress to unsupervised visitation. Denelle has a history of inadequate

supervision of the children and has not demonstrated sufficient improvement such that the

children could be returned to her care. Lucretia and Vladimir are special needs children and

require above average structure, supervision and parenting skills. Neither parent has

demonstrated the ability to provide this to the children. Based on the parent’s actions, and

sometimes lack of action, during the course of the child in need of assistance proceedings, the

Court finds that neither parent is likely to be ready to resume care of these children in the

reasonably near future. The Court finds that termination of parental rights is in the best interests

of these children.

 “A court must reasonably limit the time for parents to be in a position to assume care

of their children because patience with parents can soon translate into intolerable hardship for

the children.” In Re A.Y.H., 508 N.W.2d 92, 96 (Iowa Ct. App 1996). “The crucial days of

childhood cannot be suspended while parents experiment with ways to face up to their own

problems. “ In Re D.A., 506 N.W.2d 478,479 (Iowa Ct. App. 1993). “At some point, the rights

and needs of the children rise above the rights and needs of the parents.” In Re J.L.W., 570

N.W.2d 778, 781 (Iowa Ct. App. 1997).

Thus, it is the decision of the Court that the children’s need for permanency, security,

safety, physical and intellectual health dictates that it is in their best interests to have parental

rights terminated.


That the parental rights existing between the minor children, Vladimir and Lucretia

Kaim, and their father, Nikita Kaim, be hereby TERMINATED.

Each of these parent’s past performance causes the Court to believe that it is very

That the parental rights existing between the minor children, Vladimir Kaim and Lucretia

Kaim, and their mother, Denelle Kaim, be hereby terminated.


That custody and guardianship of Vladimir and Lucretia is placed with the Iowa

Department of Human Services for purposes of continued placement according to the prior

orders of this Court and for preadoptive placement. The Department of Human Services is

ordered to prepare an amended case permanency plan within thirty days of the date of this

order setting out the change to termination of parental rights and preadoptive placement for the

children. Further, the Department of Human Services shall prepare a case progress report, which

shall come on for written progress report review by this Court on May 3, 2010. Counsel for the

parties shall be served copies of said report five days prior to the date set for review.

Further, the parties are hereby notified that an aggrieved party may appeal this order.

Appeal of this order by an aggrieved party must be taken pursuant to Iowa Rule of Appellate

Procedure 6.5(2), which requires that the notice of appeal must be filed within fifteen days of the

entry of this order and that a petition on appeal must be filed within fifteen days thereafter.

Clerk to notify.

Dated this 9th day of March, 2010.



Associate Juvenile Judge

Sixth Judicial District of Iowa

Writer's Block: B.Y.O.B. Holidays

Which December holidays do you celebrate, and why? One random answer will win a $50 Amazon gift card. [Details here]


Just got done watching an episode of Medium where it turned out that a crazy infertile woman had killed pregnant women and was raising the babies as her own. I was thinking of Jess, and at the very end, when the father was reunited with the child he'd never seen, the song "Ooh Child" played. It made me feel hopeful. 
Lately, I keep wondering how they're going to react when Vlad starts dissecting road kill.


Writing a post for the LSG HOOD thread, I was reminded of this quote and went and hunted it down on IMDB, and decided to post it here because I keep coming back to it.

Special Agent Seeley Booth: Well, it means, Bones, that you know, you can love a lot of people in this world, but there's only one person you love the most.

Dr. Temperance 'Bones' Brennan: But how do you know which person you love the most when you're confused by chemical messages traveling throughout your limbic system?

Special Agent Seeley Booth: You just do.

Dr. Temperance 'Bones' Brennan: ...What if you let that person get away?

Special Agent Seeley Booth: That person's not going anywhere.

So does that mean that the person who doesn't go away or at least that you keep coming back to is the one?

Writer's Block: Father figure

What's the most memorable piece of advice your father has shared with you?

"You could be a nymphomaniac and work in a whorehouse and you'd still get bored eventually."


Josh tells me that worrying is praying for what I don't want, but I still worry. Well, more like visualize possible outcomes, see which ones make sense, which ones are just silly, then change what I can and accept what I can live with.
Lately, I'm feeling like the kids are okay, for now. I'm assuming they're with Jess, or will be going there at the end of the school year, and that seriously, spending a few years in Disneyworld is not exactly the average kid's worst nightmare. That's not the problem- it's that they're not allowed any contact with me. I know them, I know they've asked, I know they've been told something. I hope the separation and trauma has all been blamed on CPS, for their sake- because in the long run, for them, it's going to be easier to hate Jami and Cindy for not letting them see their Mommy anymore. If Jess and Sandy are making the choice, then either they can tell the truth "You can't see your Mommy because we hate her." and see how that flies, or make up lies about Mommy not wanting them, being a bad person, being dead, whatever. 
The more I think about it though,  I miss my Mom so much everyday. If I found out that she was alive and well and that someone had made me go through losing her and all that pain for their own selfish reasons....I would have a very hard time forgiving that person, but I think Josh would make me want to try, after listening to me bitch about the douchebags for awhile. 
I think about what directions my life is going. I have a key to a church. Seriously. I do a lot around there. Helped with the teens last week, we went around the pond and picked up garbage. Then Sunday, I helped with spring cleaning inside, 2 of us wiped off all the tables and chairs in the Community room and the classrooms.  I don't like being in the center of attention, but I know I'm appreciated, I make a difference. So, I'm pretty sure I'm going to keep that up. 
Also, it's been almost 10 months, I still don't know what's going on with this, but I could end up with him. He's going to be a minister. He's such an amazing person, he does so much for the church & the community, and puts so much into his job, I would not be the slightest bit surprised if he got nominated for the 40 under 40 award.  He doesn't even call attention to a lot of the stuff that he does, there's times I just know about it because we talk about what we did that day, or what our plans/schedule is like coming up. 
So, how are Vlad and Lucy going to feel if they're kept away from me for years, and they grow up and find me and my life is really amazing? Not working at Disneyworld, no, but doing a lot to make a difference in people's lives, make the world a better place. What if I'm a much better person than Jess? How are they going to feel? Not that I'm willing to be BSC to avoid having them feel betrayed by Jess's BSC, just trying to figure out if there's a way that this can turn out good for them.

More Mother's Day

My Mom's cousin Diane wrote me a long message. Her beliefs seem pretty similar to mine, she's been to Unity services, is friends with a Unity minister- and my Mom talked to her daughter about Jehovah's Witnesses, and that clicked for her, she studied, and got baptized, and Diane wasn't thrilled at first, but she said " I see how happy she is, how she has grown from a scared, broken little girl  to a confident beautiful woman, walking her own spiritual path. For that I am grateful." and that is exactly what I needed to hear from my Mom, coming from her cousin who is in pretty much the same situation, just  details reversed- and on Mother's Day, which is sort of the anniversary of my Mom's death.

I don't remember ever meeting Diane, she lived so far away, I just remember my Mom talking about her, and I'm not sure what made me start thinking about her earlier today, or make the effort to find her on facebook- but I am feeling like my Mom wanted me to get that message, to know that she's grateful that I've found my own spiritual path and that I'm happy, that she's not mad at me for not following in her footsteps exactly, that the important thing isn't which path you take but that it feels right for you. I feel like I have her blessing.