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Eric & Mandi
Thank you for considering adoption and viewing our profile. We hope we can share some insight into our lives. We love to laugh, play games, and be active outdoors. We look forward to being parents and would love to welcome a baby into our home. We know this is a very difficult decision and we genuinely appreciate you and feel honored to potentially be on this journey with you.
Our Leisure Time
When we have free time, we love to get outside to explore. We often visit the park, beach, or go for a bike ride. We live in an area that has a variety of museums, outdoor activities, and community events. We love to visit the zoo. Mandi always wants to see the red pandas and otters, while Eric likes to visit the reptile exhibits. When we go to the baseball games, the stadium is along a boardwalk in downtown, where we can see the shipbuilding areas, sailboats, and a drawbridge. There is an old military fort that was turned into a historic area and allows visitors to walk along the shore, climb on top of the old fort walls, and feel like you step back in time to the American revolution. During the colder weather, Eric practices his violin or plays games on his computer. Mandi enjoys practicing yoga and tending to her herb garden.
We look forward to having our child grow up in our neighborhood. We often see groups of children learning to play tennis, joining the Dolphin Swimming Team at the pool across the street, and playing games at the park. We live near a Busch Gardens amusement and waterslide park. We know our child will be excited to get a family season pass to ride the roller coasters and play at the waterpark.
Education We Will Provide
We feel it is important to help children learn to be well-rounded and self-sufficient people. We want our child to feel supported throughout their education at school, but to also learn important life skills outside of the classroom. Mandi attended a Montessori school as child and we feel there are many skills we can use from this type of hands-on education. We want to make learning an exciting exploration that is also fun. We think learning from firsthand experiences is a way to help schoolwork come alive and make sense. We plan to help our little one understand lessons from school by showing them real life examples. It might be learning to cook a recipe as a child and then later teaching them how to use fractions by only making half the recipe. Or, if they are studying American history, we would take a weekend trip to Washington, D.C. to see the monuments and museums. Neither of us liked to sit still in class, so we understand it can be difficult to only learn while attending school, so we plan to add the fun and experiences to help bring those lessons to life. It is equally important for our child to find a club, sport, or group where they can build friendships but also gain leadership skills, learn to win graciously, find hope after a defeat, and work as part of a team.
Cultural diversity is important to our family. We live in a community where people are from many different races and cultures. Mandi works at a university and is the director of the international office. She frequently works with faculty, students, and staff from other nationalities and cultures. After studying abroad as a student, Mandi was inspired to dedicate her career to helping students learn about other cultures and travel to new places. Eric grew up in Atlanta, Georgia where his community was filled with different types people and cultures in his school, friends, and his Aikido dojo. We feel learning about others culture is critical to build compassion and understanding.
We plan to expose our child to many different cultures and traditions including those from our families, friends, neighbors, and our child's culture. Our community has celebrations like the Greek Festival and International Children's Festival. We love cooking new recipes at home like a Moroccan stew or a Vietnamese rice dish. We have traveled together overseas to several countries and look forward to traveling with our child so they have these firsthand cultural experiences.
Our House and Neighborhood
We live in a quiet neighborhood with a lively, active park across the street, where we often walk our dog, Stanley. The park includes a playground, tennis and basketball courts, community pool, soccer field, and two baseball diamonds. Our community center has events throughout the year like pumpkin painting, petting zoos, and movies in the park. We live close to the oceanfront and beaches, so we have access to a great deal of festivals and events. Our favorites include the Beach Music Festival throughout the summer when live bands play along the boardwalk and we love the International Sandcastle Competition each October to see massive sand sculptures created by artists from across the globe.
Our neighbors are friendly and we see them quite often while working in the yard or taking a walk. We see families everyday while walking our dog along a 3-mile walking path that surrounds our neighborhood. We have a very diverse and open community. Our neighbors and friends include young families, retirees, multi-racial families and multi-generational households.
We live in a two story, four-bedroom home with a fenced backyard, which is filled with Mandi's gardens, a fountain, outdoor deck and screened-in patio. We enjoy sitting on the patio to read, play games, and eat meals. In the winter, we like to snuggle up with our dog and cat on the couch to watch Netflix or a movie.
Our Extended Families
We each have one older sibling who is married with children. Eric's sister lives in Georgia with her husband and two children. Eric's mother passed away in 2014 and his father lives a few minutes away from his sister's family. We visit them every December to celebrate Christmas and visit a few times throughout the year. We enjoy shopping, playing games, and cooking when we visit.
Mandi's brother serves in the military, so his family moves around frequently. He and his wife have four children. We visit them at least once a year and play games with them online to stay connected. Mandi and her brother have been close since childhood. When possible, we meet at Mandi's grandparent's farm to enjoy hayrides, walks to the family initial tree, and homecooked meals. We see Mandi's parents several times a year when they visit us in Virginia and when we travel to Ohio. Eric enjoys visiting their small town, where they have hometown restaurants, ice cream shops, and everyone knows each other. Both of our families are excited we are adopting and are looking forward to meeting the baby.
At home, we get together with friends for bowling, potlucks, and game nights. We love to share recipes and try new foods. Most weekends, we visit one of our local parks or go to the beach to walk our dog. He loves digging in the sand and chasing the tiny crabs.
From Us to You
We truly appreciate you taking time to learn more about our family. As you consider adoption, we want you to know we would welcome your child into our home and hearts. We will support, love, and care for them every day and would share milestones, photos, and stories with you. We realize this is a difficult decision and are willing to chat, speak or meet to answer any questions you may have for us.
Our family will be open with our child about the adoption process and honor your presence and sacrifice in their adoption journey. We know that your love for your child is the reason you are considering adoption and we want them to know and understand that love throughout their life. If you are interested, we are willing to meet every year in order to keep that relationship alive and allow you to see the growth of our child over the years. We will also send photos, videos, and share stories along the way. We know your top concern is the wellbeing of your child and we want you to always feel confident and comfortable with your decision for adoption, if you select our family.
We have a very peaceful home filled with fun and laughter. Our neighborhood and community are very active with recreation teams and social groups for children to choose as they decide where their interests or passions will take them. Mandi works at a university, so we will have access to many cultural, musical, and artistic events through the campus community. We often see our faculty friends at events with their children and many events cater to having children in the community attend. One event we attend each year is the Christmas concert where the music students perform Christmas songs and carols. One of the senior faculty dresses up like Santa and reads the Night Before Christmas. The concert is followed by the lighting of the campus Christmas Tree with an outdoor festival with food and games.
One family tradition dating back to the 1950's is at Mandi's grandparent's farm. At the edge of the farm field is an initial tree just inside a forest of birch and beech trees. Each family member has carved their initials into the tree since the 1950s. Over the years, we have added spouses, nieces, and nephews to the tree. We are excited for the day our child will be able to carve their initials into the tree with Eric and Grandpa's help of course. It is a big celebration when we add a family member to our family and to add their initials to the tree. Our extended family gathers and we have hayrides, cook together, and hear stories about growing up on the farm.
We want to express how grateful we are that you have considered us as potential parents for your child. We would be honored to be selected and would welcome your child into our family to begin this lifelong journey with you. We know this is a stressful and difficult time and we hope you will find the best decision for you and your child. If that includes our family, we look forward to meeting you. If it does not include our family, we pray that you and your baby are healthy and find the best path forward for you both.
Eric & Mandi