McCrossan Boys Ranch – Sioux Falls, South Dakota

The final facility from my Mother-in-law was in the hospital tour is McCrossan Boys Ranch in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.  I didn’t get a chance to visit the facility and had to shoot the pictures from the interstate, so there is not a lot that I know about it.  They have never advertised job openings with me, though they do advertise openings on their website.

From what I can tell from their website, they are a therapeutic facility that uses shift workers, so this may be a good option for singles and individuals.  The Sioux Falls area is nice and offers a great deal of outdoor opportunities.  However, from my experience from living in that part of the country the winters can be very brutal.  You can visit their website at:

This is their ranch sign with a sizable herd of horses in the background.

I believe this to be a barn or indoor arena.

Because of time restrictions, I only had time to take pictures from the interstate so I don't know what this building is.

Because of time restrictions, I only had time to take pictures from the interstate so I don't know what this building is.

 Unfortunately I will have to make another trip out west here in the very near future because my mom is dying from brain and lung cancer.  I will be passing some more facilities during that trip and will post pictures when I get back.

St Joseph Indian School – Chamberlain, South Dakota

Another stop on my Mother-in-law was in the hospital tour was St Joseph Indian School in Chamberlain, SD.  Actually it was kind of on accident that I ended up visiting there but I am really glad I did.  We were on our way home traveling East on I-90 and I saw signs for the Lakota Museum.  I thought my wife would enjoy the museum and we had been traveling for a while so we decided stop.  I knew that St Joseph was in Chamberlain but I didn’t know the Museum and School were one in the same until I got there.

The Museum was very nice, though I wish I could have taken pictures (photography is not allowed in the museum).  The displays are very informational and well prepared, and the admissions price can’t be beat because it is free.  The gift shop has some nice stuff, some of which we brought home with us.

We were in a hurry to get home so we couldn’t spend a lot of time visiting but I did take some time to take pictures of some of the facilities, which appear to be top notch.  You can find out more information about the school by checking out the job listings section of the website or visiting their website @

The School main building.

A statue outside the front gate

The Akta Lakota Museum & Cultural Center

The St. Joseph Indian School Chapel

One of the Dormitories on Campus

The Freimann Health Care Center

St Labre Indian Catholic School

I am currently in Billings, Montana because my Mother-in-Law is in the hospital with some severe health issues.  My wife and I drove up from Mississippi over the weekend and we passed several facilities.  We will pass most of them on the way back and I will take pictures and post them later, but I won’t be passing St. Labre on the way home so I stopped and shot a few pics to post.  I really wish I would have had time to stop and visit.  They have posted job listings in the past and I would have really enjoyed meeting the people behind the e-mail addresses, but I just didn’t have time.  It looks like a really nice facility!  You can visit their website @

My First Cottage in Mississippi

This is a picture of the first cottage we worked at when we moved to Mississippi.  It is an all boys cottage.  We worked in it for about 15 months.  When we left it, we were starting a new program for the facility we work at.  It was a nice cottage that had 5 bedrooms for children, 3 bedrooms for staff, and 5 total bathrooms.  I am guessing the square footage at around 5,000.  It is a pretty nice cottage and was even better when I left.  I remodeled the laundry room and it is still my wife’s favorite.

Buchanan Cottage

If there is anybody out there that would like to e-mail me a picture and description of the cottage/house/home they work in, I would be more than happy to post it here in the blog.  I will maintain your privacy and will not post any personal information.  I will only identify what state the building is in.  Send me your address with it and I will send you a printed copy of “A Diary of a Childcare Worker”

You can E-mail me at You can check out the online version of “A Diary of a Childcare Worker” by Clicking Here.

Cottage In Texas

This is a picture of a boys cottage in Texas.  It is at the second facility we worked at and is by far the largest cottage we have lived in.  Including the private houseparents’ apartment in the back, relief staff and guest quarters and rooms for 10 boys, I would guess it to be at about 6500 square feet.

I am sure there are larger cottages out there, but I haven’t lived in one larger.  If the cottage I worked in now was built like this one, I probably would sell my house.

Boys Cottage In Texas

Our Second House

Here is the front of the second house we worked at.  It was the boy’s house at Sonlight Shelter in Cody, Wyoming.  We were only in this house for a few months before moving to Texas.  It was a prefabricated house set on a concrete foundation and a whole lower level underneath the house.

 There was room 10 boys, plus three bedrooms & two baths for staff.  We had way more room than we did in the girls house, but decided we wanted to get out of therapeutic care and move to a basic care facility.  The facility was hoping to build a new house to replace this one, but funding dried up and the facility ended up closing.  It has been closed for over a year now.  Although we have been at our current facility for almost 8 years, the people at Sonlight will always be family to us.


Palmer Orphanage

This is a facility in Mississippi that was founded in 1895.  It started out as an orphanage, but is now Palmer Home for Children, a home that provides long term residential foster care.  The picture is of the original building.  Children stopped living in it during the 70’s when they were moved into large homes/cottages around campus.  It is currently the main office of the home, as well as housing the kitchen and dining room.

Palmer Home for Children

I will post pictures of some of the cottages later.

My First Cottage/House

I have added a new category to The Houseparent Network Blog called “Facility Gallery”  In it I will post pictures of houses, cottages, and facilities that I have worked/lived in and others that I come across.  I will start it off with a picture of the first place I worked as a houseparent.

Sonlight Girls

This was a teen girls – Community Group Home.  We had room for 7 girls that lived in the 3 upstairs bedrooms.  My entire family of 4 lived in one – 110 square foot room downstairs for almost two years. The accommodations were cramped, but we learned tons at this facility and we are still very fond of the people that worked there.

About two years after this they built a brand new house about where that white building in the background is.  It had three rooms for the staff and capacity for 10 girls.  I will post a picture of it later.

Unfortunately this program is now closed because of funding – It will be missed.

I now Invite you to share pictures and information about the houses you have worked in. 

You can send me your pictures and I will upload them for you onto the server and send you the URL to their location.  You can register as a contributor of The Houseparent Network Blog and create your own blog entries.  They will enter into a moderation Que and once I review them and insure they are SPAM free I will publish them for you.  Once you have submitted three SPAM free blog entries I will promote you to author and then you can upload your own images and publish your own articles.

If you want you can just E-mail me images of your cottage/facility along with some information about them and I will do it all for you.