“I get to get adopted today!”

There wasn’t a dry eye in the courtroom on Friday (myself included) as little Zion officially joined the Perkins family on National Adoption Day!

“Do you know why you’re here today?” he was asked as Friday’s proceedings got underway. 

In front of a packed room, Zion shyly shrugged, but he knew. When I asked him the same question about 10 minutes earlier he excitedly said, “I get to get adopted today.”

Make no mistake, Zion has always been part of Jason and Denise Perkins’ family, essentially from the day he was born as they have fostered him for nearly 7 years or 2,536 days as Zion’s sign so proudly proclaimed. However, out of all of those days, Friday was perhaps the best day as he officially became the Perkins’ son. 

“We kind of want to keep him forever,” jokingly told Denise Perkins told Judge Plese while tearing up. 

One-by-one – grandmas and grandpas, case workers and teachers – all spoke to the courtroom about how much they loved Zion and how happy they were to welcome him to the family. 

“I couldn’t be prouder of this little guy who’s probably going to be my only grandson,” Denise’s dad and Zion’s official new grandpa said. 

During all the testimony, the man of the hour, Zion, sat and listened patiently as his new family surrounded him with love. 

“Thank you so much for welcoming this little guy into your hearts,” Denise said to everyone in attendance. 

“You’re my whole world, buddy,” Zion’s dad Jason said. “I love you very much.”

While Zion is now officially a Perkins, Adoptions Supervisor for the State of Washington’s Department of Children, Youth and Families Diana Salinas said there are many more children across the state looking for a either an adoptive or foster family of their own. 

“In Washington State there’s 1200 children, probably more, waiting for adoptive homes and in Spokane we’ve actually adopted 163 children just through this month,” Salinas said. 

Friday was National Adoption Day in Spokane (it’s also celebrated on Saturday, but courts aren’t open on weekends), and Salinas said it’s a chance to highlight the parents who have taken the step into adoption, but also to get the word out about the need for foster parents and adoptive parents in our community. 

“We do have a need for foster parents and people who are willing to be long-term adoptive parents,” Salinas said. “There’s a great need for people who can just foster short periods of time until we find a permanent home for those children and that’s a huge need. You don’t have to sign up and be willing to adopt a child forever.” 

If you’d like to know more about the foster/adoption program in Washington, CLICK HERE

Seven years ago, Jason and Denise Perkins made the choice to foster a newborn baby and while it’s been a long journey, it’s one that officially ended Friday when they gained a son forever. 

“That’s why we went into foster care,” Denise said. “To positively impact kids and it’s a hard journey, but oh my goodness, it’s so worth it. We can’t imagine our life without Zion.”

And it’s a choice they wouldn’t change for the world as Zion is now officially Zion James Perkins. 

“Zion, it’s now official,” Judge Plese said while signing the papers at her bench. “You are now adopted. It’s a boy!”

Potato Farmers of Eastern Washington Give Away Tons of Taters

Some of the amazing farmers of Eastern Washington found they had a surplus of potatoes (3 BILLION pounds) during this shutdown, so rather than let it go to waste… they are giving it away to the public and to those in need right now! My trip to Ritzville on Wednesday ⬇️⬇️⬇️⬇️⬇️🥔🥔🥔🥔🥔

Pothole Patrol

It’s a story that’s done every year in the Spokane area. We’re well-known for our potholes. I wanted to try something different with it. Watch below!

I wanted this to be a parody of the show COPS and decided early on that my character needed to have a (horribly-delivered) Chicago/Midwest accent. Knowing this would probably not fly, I also shot a version without an accent. That’s the version that aired. This is the version I wanted to air. I think the right call was made, but here it is… Pothole Patrol: Awful Chicago Accent Edition

Happy Birthday, Ruth!

It’s hard to sum up 100 years of life, love, work, faith and service in just a simple story here, but I hope I’ve been able to capture and preserve a little bit of the life of a woman who has spent the last century preserving so much of her own history.

My latest venture in the reporting world was spent celebrating an amazing woman turning 100-years-old in Spokane Valley. Here is the story:

 

Google Maps Update Could Save You A Speeding Ticket

Been turning a couple of stories here and there. This is the latest one and I’m posting to show it off, but mostly as a way to archive it.

Google Maps released an update that will allow drivers to report police activity, such as speed traps. It’s nothing new, but how traveling has changed over the years, right?

Blue Ash Aphids Make Their Annual Return to Spokane To Look For Love

Much like smoke in the summertime or potholes in the… all the time, October is blue ash aphid season in Spokane.

I believe that means we are legally obligated to do a story on them and this year, I drew the aphid straw.

I was tasked with finding out what we can do about them and how long they will be around. The short answers: Nothing and a couple of weeks. But that would’ve only been like a 15-second story, so I stretched it out.

Enjoy!

TUTORIAL: How To Take Pictures (So They’ll Look Good On TV)

While putting together a Winter Weather Special for  the station, one of our Executive Producers came up to me and asked if I’d do a piece on submitting the best pictures for TV and social media.

I don’t know? I’m no photography expert, but I do see A LOT of viewer pictures when the snow begins to fly (usually of patio furniture).

So I reluctantly forged ahead and put together this infomercial on how to take the best pictures for TV.

Enjoy.