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Anthony & Kari
Hello! We appreciate you considering our family. Adoption is the greatest gift, and we do not take the responsibility lightly. We cannot wait to share our love, laughter and life with a child as their parents. You are brave and strong for even considering adoption, and we are praying for you. We hope you enjoy learning about our family.
Adoption in Our Lives
Although this will be our first adoption, we are very familiar with loving children that are not biologically ours. We have been foster parents for three and a half years. In that time, we had two long-term infants in our care. We cherished that time and were proud of how well we worked together to love, adore, care, and protect them. Those children continue to hold a special place in our hearts even though they are no longer with us, and they always will. We loved being parents to these little ones; watching them grow and learn on a daily basis. We are so thrilled to grow our family through adoption. We long to be parents and we have so much love to share.
Through our foster care community, we have a village of families that have adopted children. This child will have families that look like theirs in their own community. They will grow up knowing other children that have also been adopted. We also have a couple dear friends and family members who have been adopted. They have provided invaluable advice and perspective to us on this journey, and will continue to do so as we grow our family through adoption.
Our Leisure Time
Our typical weekend starts with a short walk with our beagles, followed by trying out a new place for breakfast on Saturday mornings. Anthony is on a mission to find the best cinnamon roll in the city. Then, we may go to a local craft fair or farmer's market. If it's nice out, we spend time walking the beagles or going to one of our area's many parks. We typically spend time reading or watching movies in the afternoon.
Kari enjoys tending to plants in our yard. She tried her hand at a vegetable garden last year, but found out she doesn't quite have her dad's green thumb. Anthony enjoys walking or jogging and lounging with the dogs while reading a book. All four of us love spending time on our deck when the weather is nice. We also meet friends to play board games. We have an extensive board game collection, including several children's games. We can't wait to share this hobby with our child as they grow. Games are so helpful for learning and development for children. On Sundays, we often go to church, hiking, or to a park with friends.
Even though we live near a big city, we really enjoy visiting small towns near us too. We try to visit as many small town festivals as we can in the summer and fall. This will be so much fun for a little one to experience with us!
Throughout our relationship, we have learned about each other's culture and embraced the differences we have experienced. We celebrate our heritage in our home through art and music. To celebrate our unique backgrounds at our wedding, we served German and Cajun French food. The cultural background of a child is so important to their identity and we plan to honor and celebrate that in our home and lives as well.
We understand that while we may not know everything about a child's culture, we are excited to learn with them. We want to provide opportunity for a child to discover themselves and include things that matter to them as part of our family traditions as well.
We chose to live in an area with a diverse elementary school before we became foster parents because that was important for us regardless of who our child may be. We have also worked to collect diverse children's books and toys for our child to play with. We enjoy attending cultural events (such as music and food festivals) and are excited to share these experiences with this child as well. We think it is important for children to have role models, peers, toys, and books that mirror them and will do our best to provide this for a child. We hope this child feels empowered by their race and culture and our differences will always be something celebrated in our home.
Our House and Neighborhood
Our town and neighborhood is part of a larger city in Kansas. We live in a 4 bedroom, 2 bathroom split level house with a big back yard and an inviting open living space. Our favorite space in our home is the back yard and deck. It's so relaxing to spend the evenings swinging on the deck or grilling out with friends in the summer. We live on a small boulevard with a tree lined sidewalk perfect for taking family walks with our dogs. There is also a walking trail near our home that runs alongside a creek. On the trail, there is a playground and a large community gathering and farmer's market area. We walk this trail often with our two dogs. We have really great neighbors, several of which have young children. Our elementary school is one of the most diverse within our school district and is very close to our home. We enjoy participating in community events such as farmer's markets, summer/fall events, craft festivals, parades, and music concerts close to our home. Living in a large metropolitan area allows us regular access to cultural, musical, sporting, and artistic events. There's always something fun to do as a family in our community!
Our Extended Families
We are lucky to come from supportive and loving families that we enjoy spending time with. Our families are overjoyed for this child to join our family! This child is already so loved by our families, and we cannot wait to watch that love grow.
Kari's parents live in Tennessee in a rural area. Their backyard is a grandchild's dream! There is a lake for fishing and kayaking, swings, and a vegetable garden. We see Kari's family several times a year. We also take trips together to visit Kari's brother and sister-in-law in Wyoming. When we are together, we love to eat good food and have game nights.
Anthony's family lives just 3 hours away in Nebraska. Anthony has several extended family members that live there, too. We love being able to visit everyone in one place. Spending time with our accessory-loving niece and super smart nephew is one of our favorite things to do. Anthony's parents visit us in Kansas often as well. They come down to help babysit, share meals, and help us with house projects.
Our parents both loved visiting when we had foster children. They are beyond excited to be grandparents to this little one!
From Us to You
We are so grateful for you and your interest in our family and hope to share our story. You are so brave and strong for considering adoption, and we know this choice means you have your child's best interests at heart. We feel that adoption is the ultimate gift for our family, and we are just in awe of your courage. We want you to know that will also be true of us and they will be the center of our world. We want so badly to be parents and are so thrilled you are reading this letter to learn more about us.
We met nine years ago in Anthony's hometown in Nebraska. We bonded quickly over our love of different types of music, commitment to family, and a good dessert. Kari was initially drawn to how thoughtful and funny Anthony is. Anthony was taken by Kari's kindness and friendly nature. We were married 5 years ago, surrounded by close friends and family, and we have always hoped to bring a child into a world where they would be loved by so many.
We were ready to grow our family shortly after being married and moving to Kansas. We began discussing adoption as a way to grow our family early on in our relationship. We always had the idea that we would create our family through adopted and biological children. After doing some research, our hearts were drawn to foster care to explore being parents while offering children in need a safe place in which they were loved, even if only temporarily. We spent three years as foster parents to some of the most amazing little ones. Our experiences as foster parents definitely has shaped our outlook on parenting and has confirmed our longing to become parents forever.
We tried to have children biologically for just over a year before learning that having biological children will likely not happen for us. It didn't take us long to again focus on adoption, as it is not a second choice for us. It has always been part of our plan, and now we know it's God's plan for us, too.
Through foster care, we were able to gain experience as parents. Being foster parents is challenging because you are the voice for a little person who is relying on you. We did our best to advocate for them. After being foster parents to two infants, we know that we can love a child that is not biologically ours because we have experienced it. We have no doubt that we will fall just as in love with our adopted child. We are anxiously anticipating experiencing that kind of love that makes a family once again!
This child is already so loved by so many people. Our parents, siblings, and close friends are so excited for us. We look forward to many family trips to visit grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins in Tennessee, Nebraska, and Wyoming. They will be surrounded by supportive, loving people.
We look forward to teaching them about Jazz, Cajun, and Polka music; superheroes, and Auburn football. We can't wait to experience the zoo, museums, and travel to national parks as a family, too. We are excited to watch them grow and learn and develop their own interests, as well. We plan to foster those interests and give them every opportunity to meet their hopes and dreams. Our biggest hope for this child is that they will love God, love people, be happy, healthy, feel all the love around them, and to feel uniquely themselves.
We can't begin to imagine the weight of this decision you are facing, but we have felt the pain of having a child moved from our home that we were so deeply attached to. We understand the importance of an open adoption because of this. If you are comfortable, we will send photos and letters several times a year and are open to visits. This child's birth family will be honored in our home. We plan for this child to always know their adoption story and how brave their first family was for giving us this beautiful and remarkable gift.
Anthony & Kari