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Sam & Whitney
We come from big, bustling families, and are now working to grow one ourselves. Adoption feels like a beautiful and natural way to complete our family unit. Thank you for considering us; what you're doing is immensely brave and difficult, but we can assure you that we will love and treasure the child you share with us beyond measure.
What it Means to be Parents
We have two sons, Oren who is 4 and Remy who is 1. One of the most rewarding parts of being a parent is seeing the relationship the children have with each other. They both clearly love and delight in each other. Remy follows his brother around the house and already imitates him. His first word was "brother." Oren loves to show Remy new toys, or to help us out with feeding or cleaning up after Remy. He takes a lot of pride in taking care of his little brother. He also loves to "giggle him" (i.e., tickle him). In the fall, they will be at the same school, and Oren already talks about walking Remy to his classroom each day. He takes the role of big brother very seriously, even if he sometimes gets jealous when Remy needs our attention.
Being a parent means having a (big) piece of your heart exist outside of your body. Over the past four years, we have learned unconditional love and generosity. Before Whitney was pregnant with Oren, she always felt bad for parents when she saw them need to leave a party early, or postpone their own meal, because they were tending to their kiddo. Then, after having kids, she quickly realized that it is truly a joy to make daily sacrifices for one's kids, and being with them is exactly how she wants to pass her time. To her, being a parent is deeply knowing and accepting a little human, and carrying that knowledge, love, and acceptance through all their walks of life. Sam mostly agrees with Whitney, except for the part about postponing meals. He has mastered the art of feeding himself while feeding a baby, and finishing the baby's scraps when they inevitably leave half the plate!
Education We will Provide
Whitney is a former nanny, teacher, educational researcher, and she has a PhD in education. She has taught children of all age ranges, from preschool through graduate students. She has also taught in different countries and different types of schools and school systems. Whitney wrote her dissertation about the Montessori and International Baccalaureate school systems. From her time spent in Montessori classrooms, Whitney saw firsthand how the Montessori classroom is deeply respectful of children, developing their confidence and practical skills.
We feel fortunate that we have the resources to send our children to a school that will respect and instill such confidence in them. Both of our boys are currently enrolled at a Montessori school (Remy will start this fall in the toddler class!). They will attend until they are six years old. Our next kiddo would also attend this school with their brothers. After the age of six, our kids will most likely transfer to the great public school near us which ensures they will continue to be exposed to a diverse group of families and teachers.
Addressing Cultural Diversity
Our commitment to exposing our family to diverse cultures and ways of living is already apparent in some of the decisions we’ve made. When we lived in Oakland, California, we sent our eldest son, Oren, to a school that was diverse in all senses: racially/ethnically, socioeconomically, same sex or one-parent families, families with biological and adopted children, etc. When we moved to Boston, we looked at census data when deciding exactly where to live. We made sure to move to a neighborhood where, when we were at parks or swim lessons with our kiddos, they would see and befriend people who looked different from them. We have books on our kids’ shelves, which are appropriate for their ages, and which expose our kiddos to all different types of life experiences.
With our next kiddo, we will address cultural diversity explicitly, and in big ways and small. Through the books we buy them, the schools we enroll them in, the conversations we have with them, and the people with whom we spend time. We are committed to making sure that ALL of our children understand diversity is a strength, and something to be celebrated.
Our Extended Families
We are very close with Sam's family. Though none of them live nearby, Sam's mom comes to visit every three months, and we are diligent about family reunions....we are currently planning a reunion in Portugal for Granny's 70th birthday next year! Sam has two younger siblings, both of whom are having/have kids, so there will soon be lots of cousins to play with. We do family calls every Sunday to keep up with one another's lives.
Whitney is close with her parents and her younger sister (who is adopted!). From Whitney's family, we have a love of card games and big family gatherings for every holiday and special occasion. Sam's family is culturally Jewish, so we do Friday night family dinners and celebrate some of those holidays, as well.
Both families are supportive of adoption. There is adoption in Whitney's family. Her aunt and sister were adopted. Additionally, her parents had to make an adoption plan for their son (Whitney's older brother), and we remain in contact with him today...he comes to every Easter! As such, our extended family sees adoption as a very natural way to grow and strengthen the family.
Our House and Neighborhood
Massachusetts - We live in a town that is just outside of Boston. We see it as the best of both worlds, in that our neighborhood is quiet and full of children, but we are a 5 minute drive from Boston and all the restaurants and culture that come with that. We live in a 5 bedroom house on a cul de sac with about a dozen kids on the block. We live one block from a tree filled community park that has a baseball diamond, playground equipment, and a small patch of forest that we take short walks in. Also a perfect sledding hill for snowy days.
Our community is diverse in both its racial and socioeconomic makeup. That is something that is important to us; that our children interact with others from different backgrounds. The park we go to most days reflects the broader community, including several adoptive and mixed adoptive/ biological families. Our home is calm and set up with our children in mind. We have small chairs, low shelves and low bookcases so they can easily access all of their toys and books. When the weather is nice, we spend most of our time outside. When it’s colder, we like to read, cook, and do art together.
From Us to You
Dear Birth Mamma,
Thank you, so very much, for this tremendous gift. When they were very young, Whitney's parents made an adoption plan for her older brother. It was the hardest thing they ever had to do, particularly Whitney's mother. Given this, we know a bit about how brave and strong you must be, and how difficult this situation is. Additionally, Whitney has been pregnant and given birth twice, and so understands full well the physical, mental, and emotional toll of pregnancy and birth. It is through your sacrifice that we are able to grow our family; we will feel gratitude toward you each and every day.
We have been together for over ten years (married for five). As happy and healthy as our relationship was at the start, we feel our love and teamwork are only getting stronger and better with time. We adore being parents to our two current kiddos, and want to build a family that has all the hustle and bustle we both knew as children. Whitney has adoption in her extended and immediate family, and so it feels like a natural and exciting way to bring our youngest into the family, making it complete.
Until we can meet you, the only thing we can offer you is our promises. We promise to share letters and photos, emails and text messages. If you wish it, we promise to make phone calls and visits happen, too. Whitney's family maintains connection with her older brother; everyone has benefitted from that ongoing relationship. As challenging as this situation is, you can count on us to support you, and to loop you in to this child's life.
Another promise we make to you is this: peace. We will love this child truly, madly, deeply. We will welcome them (and you) into our lives with open hearts, minds, and arms. This little baby you are sharing with us will grow up with traditions and holidays, siblings and cousins, laughter and more cuddles than they could imagine. We will offer them all sorts of exciting experiences and adventures, even as we think carefully and deeply about their education and development. We will model a happy, healthy marriage, and will foster healthy sibling relationships, too. We will give them our time, our attention, and a love so deep that they will grow up knowing how worthy they are. We will let them know, each and every day, that they made our family better; they made it whole.
If you choose us, you are choosing two people who enjoy being parents more than anything else. You are choosing two people who are dedicated to being the best parents they can possibly be; parents who strive to always be better. You are choosing a family that loves fiercely, and that cannot wait to get to know this little baby...the more we know, the more we can love, support, and protect them.
If you choose us, you are our hero, and our heartstrings will forever be connected.
Sam & Whitney
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