TANF – Temporary Assistance for Needy Families

As I have mentioned in the brief summary of “Our Journey,” I am an Aunt who has Co-Guardianship of my niece and nephew. I acquired Guardianship through probate court instead of waiting for DCF to step in through Juvenile Court. Since my mother and I took that route we cannot receive any assistance from the state (housing, snap-food stamps, cash assistance). With the only exception of medical. Income guidelines also stop us from receiving assistance. 

However, after over two years of Guardianship, we were finally told that we may qualify for TANF. There are income guidelines but there are other requirements. From the feedback I received, it is on a case by case basis. It is provided for 21 months but can be extended for more time based on exceptions.  Guardians must also agree that DSS can seek child support on their behalf. This has been a huge blessing! It helps with the extra groceries we have to get now and the costs of summer programs.  I hope other Guardians not eligible for assistance will see this post and apply. 

Here is an infirmational link below to a pdf document:



Grandparent Respite Fund

This past year, we were blessed to receive the Grandparent Respite Fund right before Christmas. I want to make sure others in Connecticut are aware of this fund. The fund is based on available funding. The fund is for a Grandparent or other adult who has been appointed a guardian for relative children by the probate court. The child must live with you and you cannot receive monetary support by DCF. The money can be used for various things from basic care needs to housing expenses and transportation expenses. It is best to apply early as possible in the year. 

I applied late but was so blessed to receive some of the funds. We got the kids new mattresses, clothes, coats, and Christmas gifts among many other things. This blessing came 3 to 5 days before Christmas. It was one of the best Christmas’s we had in a long time. We have guardianship over two children, however we have 7 other children that we try to buy gifts for. That is another long story with my other nieces and nephews. 

If I remember correctly the application will ask you for the household income and expenses, who lives in the home, and what the funds will be used for. 

Here is the link below:

Grandparent Assistance CT 

Year Recap

Time has gone by so fast. I realized that I have not posted in awhile. That is what happens when your concentrating on the present.

The children are doing great now. We made sure the children were enrolled in the same school and set them up with a great Pediatrician.  They went to Disney world Magic Kingdom for one day and they had a blast. We may not have a zillion dollars but we do what we can to make memories. For the summer we enroll them into PAL Camp, try to do an activity every weekend, and our new favorite place is Barnes and Nobles.

Both children are now caught up in school and have developed a sense of confidence. As well as their critical thinking skills.  I believe their self identity is extremely important. My minions had a lot of adjustments to make.  
They now ask for hugs every time they see my mother, my fiance, and I.  Something that was once foreign and awkward for them. My nephew loves it when I scoop him up into a bear hug, pick him up, and squeeze him with love. He then squeezes me back and waits for his kiss on his forehead.  My niece rolls up on you and says “hug, hug” until you give her one. She will stalk you throughout the house until she gets it. 

They are not perfect little angels. We had a lot of disciplining to do along the way. Especially with my nephew. Sometimes we have to try to discipline him without laughing at the reason why he got in trouble.  However I now think we have spoiled them. 


I am an Aumy! An Auntie who now has to be Mommy too.  I recently received Guardianship of my lovely niece and nephew.  I have no children of my own.  It’s a hard role to have.  An aunt is supposed to be someone who steps in when parents are not capable of doing certain things.  A second in command before Grandma steps in.  Like buying needed school clothes, taking the kids on outings when the parents are busy, paying for school trips, giving the best birthday presents, explaining life’s details and a person to vent to.  The best part about being an Auntie is the ability to be the child’s favorite person. Oh! I almost forgot, the other best part is the ability to bring your sidekick back home.  I love my little minions! However now I can’t bring them back home.  Their home is with me and I would not have it any other way.  Sometimes I look at them and wonder if my eggs were stolen. 🙂 I don’t think I know what I am doing all the time but the kids and I are in it together now.

I wanted to create this blog so all Aumy’s out there can share their experiences.  The road may be bumpy but all we need is some tequila, hand sanitizer, and arms ready for big hugs at any moment.