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Justin & Erika
Being parents is the greatest gift we have ever received. We love the hugs, the silly conversations, singing and playing and learning new things together. We have so much more love to give, and thank you for considering us as a potential parents for your child.
We enjoy setting out on adventures big and small. An adventure for us is anything new, and we crave doing new things on a regular basis. Whether it is a new kind of food, a trip to a new place or just learning or reading something new. We have been fortunate to travel to many amazing places all over the world and plan to take our children on those same kinds of adventures. We took our son to Disney World right after his 2nd birthday and to Key West for Christmas and he now asks daily when he will get to go on a plane again to see Mickey and the beach!
We also really enjoy outdoor adventures like hiking and biking. We like to put our son in a trailer and pull him behind us wherever we go - on vacation or in our neighborhood. We also like to go on adventures with our friends. Erika recently took a trip to Sedona with childhood friends and Justin made many new friends on a recent trip to China and Japan.
Why We Chose Adoption
We were lucky enough in the first 5 years of our marriage to travel the world together, visiting New Zealand, Africa, Central America and Europe. These experiences shaped who we want to be as people and as parents - open minded, kind, brave and adventurous. We began our journey to start a family in our early 30's and quickly found that we had trouble conceiving and begun in vitro fertilization. We were incredibly lucky to get pregnant and welcome our beautiful baby boy Theo into the world August 2016. Becoming parents was truly magical and exhausting at the same time! We knew we would love it, but never thought it was possible to feel this much love.
We have always wanted at least 2 children, and after much loss and sadness we realized that we were meant to walk another path in life to complete our family. We were always open to adoption and as we began thinking about it more, we became really excited about offering a child a loving home and all of the resources and opportunities any child would want. We also think about the amazing gift this would be for us, to have another child to love, hold, tickle, kiss and grow with.
Our Promise to You
We promise to always do our best. We will provide a warm, safe and loving family life for this baby, just as we have done for our son. We promise to always spend quality time with our children - loads of time at the park, Saturday play dates with friends, movie nights, time with family and pancake dinners. We both have fulfilling careers, but will never let our careers get in the way of building a strong family. We promise to respect your baby's journey and to talk about you often, ensuring they understand the selfless act their mother made and how much she loves them. We will always make sure they feel a strong sense of family and belonging by valuing our differences and reflecting on our similarities as a family.
We also promise to provide this child with excellent opportunities to excel in life, including great education, hobbies and sports. Living in an urban area, we have access to so much culture, this child will be exposed to so much life. We will take them with us on adventures and hope to have a travel partner for life. They will be taught compassion, humility, love, respect and how to laugh when things are tough.
Our Extended Families
Justin's family lives about 3 hours away and we see them often to celebrate birthdays and holidays. We host Thanksgiving at our house annually since we have wonderful weather through December. His entire family attends, staying for a long weekend together. Thanksgiving is our favorite time together, we eat, play games, and usually walk to eat or go to a brewery in our neighborhood the day after Thanksgiving. Justin's family loves Thanksgiving food and makes sure that all the yummy favorites are there each year.
Erika's family lives in California, but we see them quite regularly and talk to them on the phone 2-3 times a week. Erika's mom visits every couple of months for at least 2 weeks and is very involved with our son. We also make at least 1 trip out to California a year to enjoy family, sun and the beach.
Our tradition with Erika's family is to spend Christmas together whether it is in California or meeting up in another warm weather location. We wear matching pajamas, spend time in the pool and eat something different for Christmas dinner each year. It is a very un-traditional "tradition" makes for a lot of fun.
Our House and Neighborhood
We live in an urban borough in a large southeastern city. The neighborhood is a mix of new and old houses, both small and large, but all with lots of charm. We chose this area to live because it is relaxed, diverse and full of great restaurants and parks to walk to. We can be at breakfast, grocery store, preschool, bakery and more in under 10 minutes on foot. We have wonderful neighbors from all different walks of life, other countries and states. On our block alone we have 8 children under 5. The kids have scooter meet-ups, bounce house and trampoline dates regularly. Our neighborhood hosts quarterly events ranging from bbq's to street clean-ups. Halloween is a big event here, we have an 8 block long parade that follows behind the local fire engine. There are also Easter egg hunts and spring celebrations.
Our house was built a few years ago and has 5 beds and 4 full baths. We have a large loft play room, a train table/toy room upstairs right off of our son's room and another kid bedroom waiting for a baby. The home has a large kitchen that opens to a living room where we spend most of our time together. Our neighborhood park has jungle gyms, a creek and a wetland area to fish and watch the birds. We also belong to a pool outside the city and spend much of our summer there.
From Us to You
We are so thankful that you are taking the time to get to know us. We are very excited to adopt a baby and bring even more love and adventure into our lives. We have spent a lot of time thinking about the mixed emotions that you must be feeling and please know that we are grateful you are even considering us as parents for your child.
We are fortunate to already be parents to a 3 year old biological son, Theo. Becoming parents has been a tough journey for us - we have struggled with infertility for years, before and after our son's birth. Although painful, this solidified for us how badly we wanted a family and helped us realize that adopting a baby would be an amazing gift. The love we feel for our son is deep and we can truly say we would do anything for him and know we would for our future child as well. We are also very excited for Theo to become a big brother - and think he will be a natural! He is a kind, curious and loving toddler who enjoys time with his friends at school and likes meeting new people and animals.
We met in 2006 while Erika was in graduate school and Justin was already working as an engineer. We had an instant connection based on a mutual desire for fun and adventure and shared values of kindness, hard work and honesty. We were engaged shortly after Erika finished school and were married in 2007. We have always been a strong team, supporting each other's career and life aspirations. We are not perfect people, but we complement each other and feel like we can take on the world together.
We live in a wonderful neighborhood in an urban area in the southeast. The neighborhood is a mix of old and new homes with large front porches and a constant flow of neighbors walking dogs and pushing strollers down the street. What we love the most is that our neighborhood is full of people from all over the U.S. with different backgrounds.
We are an active family, spending our free time biking, walking to local restaurants and taking trips to zoos, museums and parks. We have a tight-knit group of parents on our street with kids the same age that we enjoy spending time with. There is a lot of scooter riding, running through sprinklers and birthday parties. We are so excited about adding another child to our family and feel that it is very important that this child knows that they are loved by their birth mom. We will talk about you often, share photos and emails and are open to meeting when the time is right for all of us. We want to make sure you know that your child is being cared for and loved throughout the years.
Thank you for reading our letter and for considering us. Whether you choose us or another family, we wish your child a healthy and happy life.
Justin & Erika
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