Recently, the McDevitts, an Angels’ Arms foster family, experienced Trout Lodge and the magic that takes place when you go there as a family. Despite going on the hottest weekend of the year, they were able to ride on a boat, swim in the lake, and ultimately just spend time as a family away from technology and their day-to-day routines.
When Mary McDevitt was asked what a trip to Trout Lodge meant to her she explained, “It refreshed and refilled us all! We were able to reconnect as a family through meals together, games played and shared experiences.”
While at Trout Lodge many Angels’ Arms children encounter “firsts” and for the McDevitt family, who take in many foster children with medical needs, they love watching each child experience the simple joys of just being a kid. “We so enjoyed watching our little guy B experience life outside of our home. He discovered ice cream and snow cones – what could be grander!”, said Mary.
The beauty of Trout Lodge is its appeal to all ages. The McDevitt’s have a wide age range of youth in their home and every child had a special time exploring, learning and growing while there. Mary mentioned “The baby loved being the center of attention – she gave all who talked to her a huge smile and warmed their hearts.”
A unique perspective that isn’t discussed much in foster care is the dynamic between a foster parents’ biological/adopted children and the foster children they care for. Mary touched on this subject and how important trips like this are to all the children living in their home, including their (as they refer to them) “forever kids”. Mary said, “Our forever kids sacrifice a lot by sharing their parents with very high needs little ones and this was just the thing we needed to say to them “we see you and we love you “.
During their time at Trout Lodge, Mary explained how one child had a breakthrough moment while on a boat ride. A young boy that came to their home six months ago, arrived receiving all of his nutrition through a g-tube and was also severely orally aversive. During this trip he came a long way, Jim, Mary’s husband, was feeding the young boy ice cream on the boat and he was anticipating and asking for more bites! A big step for this little guy! “Jim could not feed him fast enough, and there were tears, lots of tears, when the ice cream was gone.”, said Mary. A special moment they surely will not forget.
The McDevitt family is already looking forward to hopefully going back to Trout Lodge next summer! Until then, they have the amazing memories and photos from this special trip to look back on.
See you again soon, Trout Lodge! 👋