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Brad & Elyssa
Thank you for taking a moment to read about us! We wish you the very best of luck in finding someone perfect for your child, and we would be honored to be considered. You can be confident in knowing that we can offer unconditional love, a safe home, support, encouragement, and guidance to the child that's placed with us. Our dream would be realized to become parents and to complete our family through adoption.
Our Leisure Time
On weeknights, we enjoy eating dinner together and winding down with our dogs while watching TV. We enjoy shows like The Office and This Is Us and we also work out most days of the week. On the weekends, we visit friends or family. We enjoy shopping, having a meal out, hosting game nights, or taking our nieces/nephews out for an activity. During the colder months where we can't be outside as much, Elyssa loves to craft and bake while Brad enjoys home improvement projects. During the spring and summer, we love walking our dogs and gardening in our yard.
We both volunteer for the STL Cure Sarcoma 6k. Elyssa is part of the founding committee and has helped to grow the event over the last five years. She runs the basket raffle for the event, which we both volunteer for on the day of the event. We walk around, get to know people, sell tickets, and all donations go toward sarcoma cancer research.
Elyssa dreams of sharing craft nights or baking with a little one. We look forward to reading with them, taking them ice skating, to the movies or the zoo or museums, letting them run their hands through the dirt while we work in the yard, etc.
Lastly, we love to travel! Traveling will always be a part of who we are—it's what connected us when we met—and we absolutely plan to show our child as much of the world as possible.
Fun Facts About Us:
It's very important to us that we expose our child to different cultures and ethnic groups. Elyssa studied Spanish throughout high school and it was a natural choice to choose it as a college major. During college, she lived abroad in Spain for two months, attending a Spanish-language immersion school. After college, she spent three months in Chile teaching English to local students. Elyssa tries to keep up with her Spanish by watching TV shows and movies in Spanish, listening to Latin music, visiting regularly with her two close friends who are Spanish teachers, and getting to know her friend's sister-in-law who is from Colombia. Additionally, Elyssa has close family of Mexican heritage who we visit with regularly.
Elyssa has also studied several other languages (French, Russian) and has tutored immigrants learning English at the International Institute of St. Louis. We like to attend cultural fairs like Greek Fest and the Festival of Nations in the city. We find so much value in being exposed to other cultures and languages as it allows people to challenge their own perspectives of the world. What better way to expand your horizons and become a more open and tolerant person than by meeting people who are different than yourself?
Our House and Neighborhood
We LOVE our home and community! We live in an Illinois suburb of St. Louis, Missouri. Being a college town, our community has a very progressive, open-minded aura about it. In the summer, there are free weekly music concerts, we have an annual bike race as well as art fair, and every weekend we have a local farmer's market. Our community is also a nice blend of urban and rural. Our county also has over 100 miles of bike trails, and our town has a very unique nature preserve with a walking trail as well as a fun children's museum. In addition to all of this, as mentioned, we are very close to St. Louis and all of its amenities.
Our neighborhood is full of kids riding their bikes, playing basketball, and simply running around in clusters. We live on a quiet street with a cul-de-sac where the houses are well-maintained and our neighbors are very friendly, down-to-earth people.
Our home is a two-story traditional home with a fenced backyard and lots of beautiful trees that provide privacy. There are four bedrooms in our house, four bathrooms, and a mostly-finished basement that Brad has decked out in paraphernalia from our favorite movies (Harry Potter, Back to the Future, Avengers). This movie room is probably our favorite area of the house since it is a place of total relaxation. Plus, the dogs can snuggle up next to us on the couch, which is one of our favorite things in the world.
Our Extended Families
We are very fortunate in that we live close to both sides of the family. Brad's sister, brother-in-law, and their three small children all live just five minutes away, and both Brad's parents and Elyssa's dad and stepmom are 15 minutes away. Elyssa's mom is a little further away at about 45 minutes, but it is still a trip we make every couple of weeks.
Like many families, we all get together for major holidays, but we also see family with simple pop-ins to each other's homes. Coordinating dinners out is also a common occurrence, and we are quite used to both calling and receiving calls because either we or someone else needs help moving a piece of furniture or needs assistance with a house project.
Both sides of our family have been incredibly supportive of our decision to adopt. Elyssa's mom will be a first-time grandparent and has already decided she will be "the spoiler." Brad's parents are already grandparents to three children and love to provide all sorts of entertainment for the kids, from a treehouse built by hand to a zipline, kayaks, an art room, cookie baking, etc. The kids are never bored at their house! We know that any child brought into our family will be loved with the same passion, and our parents can't wait to spoil him or her along with the rest of them.
From Us to You
It touches our heart to think of the circumstances that have brought you here. We won't pretend to know what you're feeling, but we do know what it's like to have to make an incredibly tough decision in life, especially when it's one you may feel forced into by your circumstances. We empathize with the struggle you're facing, and we pray that God gives you strength to determine the right decision for you and your baby—whatever that may be.
A little bit about us ... we met in January of 2014 through an online dating website. We connected right away through our conversations about language, travel, family, and the fact that we grew up only about 25 minutes apart. We met for our first date, and Brad likes to joke about the fact that he had stars in his eyes while Elyssa thought Brad was a bit of a nerd. It's a true story, but clearly after a few dates, Elyssa was won over entirely by Brad's kind heart and handsome smile. Our connection only grew stronger, and on Christmas Eve later that year, Brad proposed. It was the most exciting moment of our lives—until our wedding day, of course! We got married the following summer in Mexico, surrounded by a few close friends and family members. It was magical, and everything we hoped it would be.
After we got married, we bought a house, which we've been focusing on improving over the last three years. That, our two awesome pups, and an array of hobbies keep us busy. But there has been something missing for us—a void that we haven't been able to fill, which has led us here.
Our adoption journey and your adoption journey have obviously been worlds apart up to this point. We are here because we've struggled to conceive our own biological child. After trying for two years unsuccessfully, we decided we needed intervention. We tried certain infertility treatments but stopped short of IVF when we realized that our ultimate goal wasn't so much to become pregnant, but to become parents. That's when it hit us that adoption could very well be our path to parenting. After much discussion and taking some time to grieve our infertility, we dove head-first into adoption, and we haven't looked back since. We absolutely cannot wait to become parents and bring a beautiful new baby into our home! Most recently, we've begun working on the nursery, and sometimes we just sit in that room reading or sipping coffee just to feel a little physically closer to where our baby will one day be.
A topic of utmost importance in the life of our child will be their adoption story. We want them to feel encouraged and welcomed to ask questions. We want them to know their history. Any child should have no doubt about their identity and where they come from. We respect that different birth parents will wish to have different degrees of communication, but we do hope that the birth parents will want to have some kind of contact or communication with their child simply because we think that would be the best thing for the child. We hope to share photos, phone/video calls, in-person meetings when possible, and any other contact their birth parents and the child feel comfortable with. We also understand that this relationship may be an ebb and flow of more or less contact at certain times of life just depending upon the circumstances in the birth parents' lives. But ultimately, just know that we want to support and nurture a relationship with you because we think it is of the utmost importance.
Brad & Elyssa
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