We live in a split ranch with five bedrooms and three bathrooms, and good size backyard that is located in a quiet subdivision. We are surrounded by families with younger children who are often out playing together. We live three blocks away from a park district with a baseball field, bike trail, basketball and tennis courts, and a huge playground adjacent to a public school. Our suburb is very diverse when it comes to residents’ ethnicity and heritage. It has been named by a magazine as the “Best Town to Raise Kids” (and remains in the top 100 list) because of its friendly neighborhoods. Neighbors look out for one another and we are fortunate to have a community with low crime rates. Our public school system is well known for being one of the best and we have two private schools that are Blue Ribbon award winners. We are proud of our community that has amenities/facilities such as: three-park district pools including a wave pool, a forest preserve, a toboggan hill, a shopping mall with a variety of ethnic restaurants, local churches of different faiths, nearby hospitals and local clinics and a wonderful library system.
Besides the usual celebrations during major national holidays, our town also offers a variety of family-friendly events, such as: a Midsummer Downtown Party where neighbors and friends gather for an afternoon and evening of great food and entertainment, a Family Bike Ride around town, a Fall Festival with pumpkin painting, scarecrow contest, hayrides, games and crafts.
We both come from large families who are close-knit. Whenever we get together, we usually gather around the table sharing and enjoying each other’s recipes, watch sports on TV, play board games and when outdoors, we play badminton, volleyball and bean bag toss. Whenever we visit family overseas (Mannie’s side), our family there plans various activities like out of town trips and small parties.
The importance of family plays a big part in the Filipino tradition, which we impart to Joel. We always spend quality time having meals together and attending church. Celebrating birthdays, anniversaries and holidays are significant for us. We have great respect for the elderly.
Our family maybe just like any other family in various ways only, we give a lot of emphasis on developing values, which center on God. We have discovered that parenting is not solely focused on nurturing and rearing our children but in the process, it’s also bringing out the best in us as parents. Since this is our second adoption, our families are very excited to welcome another child whom they will love and care for just like how they are devoted to Joel.
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