Nate comes from a very large family. All of his five siblings are married and have two or three children. A few of the siblings live in Nate's hometown and Nate's two sisters (and their families) live close to us. Nate's family has always been very close and when the group gets together, it is often difficult to tell whose children belong to whom. Everyone gets along well and everyone pitches in to help with tasks, chores, or watching children. All of Nate's siblings enjoy playing board games, grilling and relaxing together. His family always gets together for Thanksgiving and is the single day of the year when the entire family is together for a large, home-cooked meal.
Nate's entire family is excited about our plan for adoption and they have continued to ask questions along the way. They are very much looking forward to welcoming another child into the fold.
Harper comes from a smaller family, though the family is extremely close. Harper's sister and father live in Louisiana where Harper grew up. Harper and her family remain in close contact over the phone, Skype and other messaging platforms. We travel back to Louisiana at least once a year to see Harper's family. Harper is extremely close with her younger (and only) sister, who is married. Harper's family is extremely supportive of our plan to adopt and despite their distance, have offered to help us at a moment's notice.
Despite living in the largest metro area in the state of Iowa, we live in a quiet western suburb that is known for its community feel and friendly faces. Our neighborhood is made up of a diverse population and we often see folks outside spending time with friends and neighbors. Everyone nearby takes great pride in their homes and works to ensure that the neighborhood is well-kept. While neighbors are not overly involved, we all work together to help one another when we can. Oftentimes, the first one outside after snowfall will shovel or snow blow our (albeit short) side of the street's sidewalk. Our street is very short, extremely quiet and has minimal traffic.
In the fall season you can hear the local high school marching band practicing on the football field nearby. On Friday nights you can hear the roar of the crowd as the announcer makes the play-by-play calls from the press box. In the summer, our community is bustling with fairs, festivals and concerts. Neighbors make deck sitting and porch-swinging a summer past time. In the spring, gardens are a flurry of activity as people work to plant their favorite annuals and vegetables.
We are only one block from access to lengthy bike trails that crisscross our metro area. Our local trails connect to towns and villages up to 150 miles away. We live in a state capital-city that has a small-town feel. We believe that Iowa is a perfect balance of urban and rural.
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