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Mark & Erica
We are so excited to start this experience with you! We believe we were led to adopt to meet not only our family needs but yours as well. We hope you will find us compassionate and a good fit for this relationship. We understand this may not have been an easy decision and hope we can all come together to provide a loving future for this child.
Why We Chose Adoption
The choice of adopting a child is probably one of the biggest or most important decisions we have made as a couple. Some of the reasons are easy; we love children. They bring us joy and a satisfaction that is not matched by anything else in our lives. However, others are more difficult, and that is the issue of time.
We both have children from previous marriages. Mark has two adult daughters ages 21 and 20. Abigail is married to a soldier and they are currently living in Colorado Springs near Fort Carson. Bailey is attending a college in Ohio and studying Video Game Design. They are super excited to be the "big sisters" on this journey!
Erica's son, Xavier, would have been 10 years old this year. He unexpectedly passed away in 2011 from a virus in his heart. The year and a half he was with us is treasured every day. We keep his memory alive by sharing stories we remember often.
Our marriage came to be later in life, as most second marriages do. As we discussed having a child together, we faced challenges. We attempted IVF and were unsuccessful. After much prayer, talking to our friends who had adopted, and then a very heartfelt discussion as a couple, we decided that adoption was the best option for us to make our desire of having a child together a reality. We are so excited to be taking this step and cannot wait for this next chapter in our lives!
Our Leisure Time
We like to spend our down time in many ways! We truly enjoy spending time with our military friends and family. A normal weekend may include having them over for lunch or dinner, spending time on the back patio laughing or keeping the littles occupied in our large backyard. We do enjoy simple days of a movie or playing a competitive game of Shanghai Rummy or board games with friends. We have two Catahoula pups that have mastered the "puppy dog face" that entices us to take walks around the neighborhood. We also enjoy getting away whenever possible to explore new places.
Erica loves crafting. She also loves to take pictures, create from scratch and is currently learning all about Pyrography (wood burning). She is a lover of books and can lose herself in a story. However, some mornings she just opens Candy Crush on the phone and relaxes!
Mark loves to hunt and fish when available. He also gets tricked into helping with Erica's crafts, but she believes he secretly loves it!
Our Promise to You
As we begin this adoption journey, we believe that the most important detail is the child. Our promise to you is we will always place the child first in our life. We will remember that this is about them and what we as parents are doing to give them the best life that we can. If you so choose, we will make you as much of a part of their life as you want.
We promise to love this child, provide for them and raise them to ensure they grow to be someone that has a sense of pride, responsibility and respect for their family and community. We promise to always honor the choice you made to place your child for adoption and will ensure this child knows that that choice was made out of love. We promise that no matter what age, gender or ethnicity this child is, we will love them as our own and do everything to provide them with a life and home that will let them be proud of their family, background and culture.
Our House and Neighborhood
We currently live in a modest two-story home in the great state of Texas with our two dogs. It often becomes a place to gather with our friends for weekend cookouts, spouse socials or an impromptu place to stay for travelling friends and family.
But what we think makes our home so unique is the people we share it with. By this we mean our military family. We have lived close to or on a military base for quite some time in our life. The soldiers and their families are what makes that special. The military community becomes your surrogate family. We can't help but fall in love with all the different people we meet and in doing so become so close to them. There is always a holiday we are preparing for, a homecoming we are excited about or an upcoming birth we are celebrating Whether we are staying for one year or five years we embrace our local community as our home until we make it back to our final destination.
Our Extended Families
In our opinion, our extended family story is unique. We grew up in the same home town, Madison, Ohio. Its centered between Cleveland, Ohio and Erie, Pennsylvania. We both grew up there, moved away after high school and went our separate ways. Our parents, two of three siblings and close friends still live there. Because our professional lives have taken us all around the country, we go home to visit family often, usually around Christmas and in the Summer. Every time we visit is like a reunion. Spending time with family and friends, catching up, large family meals, get togethers, games and just relaxing.
Soon, we will retire from the Army and move back to Ohio, where we intend to build a home, be closer to our family and try and live a more simple life—one where we can be part of our local community, volunteer at our schools and church and share in our family life.
We have many nephews and nieces back home and look forward to them being part of our son or daughter's life. We are very proud of our family and look forward to sharing this experience with them.
From Us to You
First and foremost, we want to thank you for considering us as possible adoptive parents. You have come so far and please know that we cannot imagine what choices you've had to make. We would like to tell you that, for whatever reasons you have made this decision to consider adoption, we see you as strong and selfless. We hope we both want the same end result: a happy, healthy and loving home for this child.
To share a little about us, we are from the same hometown in Ohio, where most of our family still lives. For the past 25 years Mark has served in the U.S. Army and Erica has been a flight attendant for Delta Airlines for 22 years. In about a year and a half Mark will be retiring from the Army and we will move back home to be closer to family and start the next chapter in our lives. This is one reason we know the time is right for us to adopt. We will be near our family, plan to build our home and lead a more simple life.
Another thing about us that is important to know is the we were both previously married. Mark has two daughters, Abigail (21) and Bailey (20). Erica had a son from her first marriage, Xavier, who unexpectedly passed away in 2011. Now that the girls are grown and are moving on into their adult lives, and we have grieved and are healing from losing Xavier, we believe the time is right for us to add to our family.
We hope you understand we will make this child our first priority through raising them in a home supported in love and respect. No matter the gender or ethnicity this child may be, we will ensure they are raised right and proud of their heritage. We will do whatever it takes to make sure this child is raised to be proud of their family and background.
We would feel blessed should you choose us to join you on this journey. In our discussion of raising an adopted child, we agree that you should be as involved in this child's life as you would want to be. We agree to send pictures, exchange emails or letters, phone calls and even future visits if that is something you would like to be a part of in this process. We are more than willing to meet with you in person beforehand as Erica flies for a living and can make this possible as much as you would like. As we are writing this, we pray that our hearts are coming out in our words as best as we can.
Thank you for taking the opportunity to consider us to adopt your child. As you may realize, this is one of the biggest decisions that we have made as a couple. We do not take it lightly, but are positive this is the right choice for us and hopefully you will agree.
Mark & Erica
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