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Mike & Misty
Our lives are full of love, joy, and adventure and we are so excited to begin the journey into parenthood. As you consider this incredibly difficult decision, know that you would be making our dreams come true. We look forward to sharing this adventure with you. Thank you for taking the time to learn more about us through our words and photos!
How We Met
We met while serving as volunteers in the Peace Corps in Kyrgyzstan in 2007. While there, we taught English, ate local delicacies like stewed mutton, traveled the country, and learned the language. We discovered our shared interests in world travel, volunteer work, and adventure.
It was during our long talks while hiking in the mountains near our villages and co-leading a summer camp when we really connected with each other. We recognized our similar values, including the importance of family, treating everyone with respect and kindness, strong work ethics, and a yearning to make the world a better place. Quite soon after we started dating, Misty asked Mike if he wanted to have kids someday and was pleased by his affirmative answer. She knew even then that he would be a great dad. After we came back to the States, we began to build the life we have now with a new house, careers, and family. 12+ years later and we are still going strong!
What Makes Us Unique
We get told that we are a loving couple a lot by our friends and family. One of our friends joked and asked if we ever fought, reminding us that it is normal and would be ok if we did. We are our own unique selves and have our differences, but we have deep empathy, love, and respect for each other that helps us get along really well. When we have faced hard times, we shoulder the burden together and those times have tended to make us stronger.
Years ago on our first international trip together we started sharing meals in case we never went back again, and we are still doing this 12 years later—even at our local breakfast hangout! We both appreciate our differences—Misty is the baker in the house and Mike cooks dinners and likes to experiment. Mike is pretty outgoing and Misty likes smaller groups. We make a good team whether on a house project or doing the shopping and we know this will help us as we welcome a child into our lives.
Our Family Traditions
Holidays play a big role in our family traditions. We spend every Thanksgiving with Mike's family and every Christmas with Misty's. For turkey day, we fly to either Illinois or Nashville where all 25 of Mike's siblings, in-laws, and nieces and nephews gather. Last year, there were 4 different groups playing games around the room. In early December we go Christmas tree 'hunting' with Misty's family at a u-cut tree farm. On Christmas Eve, we make bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin with apples. After Misty's sister reads The Night Before Christmas, our nieces open up new pajamas. On Christmas morning we sip our coffee while we open over-stuffed stockings and munch on sweet breads and fruit. We move onto the presents under the tree and spend the afternoon playing with our new gifts and making a roast beef dinner.
Every January we go to a cabin in the mountains with Misty's family. We all love playing in the snow, sledding, and drinking hot chocolate by the fire. In March we celebrate 'Marchgiving' with Misty's mom, sister, and nieces because one turkey dinner a year is just not enough. Summer brings us our annual vacation with Mike's family, followed by our annual camping trip with Misty's family in the San Juan Islands. Our families are so important to us both and the traditions we share create so many wonderful memories.
Our Extended Families
Last night we drove to Misty's mom's house just a few minutes away for family pizza and game night. Misty's older sister, 2 nieces, and Mike's sister all live in our town and joined us for the fun. We had a great time cooking together, laughing, and 'stealing' poker chips from the bank in our game of Tripoly. We feel incredibly fortunate to have family nearby. Everyone is so excited about our adoption plans and they are already vying for who will get to babysit.
When we visit Misty's dad, stepmom, and aunt just a few hours south of us, we love going to the Oregon coast, concerts in the park, and bike rides along the river. Misty's dad and stepmom are looking forward to spoiling the newest grandchild and sharing their love of world travel. Although Misty's family is relatively small, Mike has 4 older siblings, all with spouses and kids, making for family gatherings of 25. We love our yearly tradition of Thanksgiving at Mike's brother's house when we stuff ourselves with turkey and pie, take naps in front of the fireplace, and play board games into the night. We get to see Mike's family every summer too, when we join them for a family vacation at different places all over the U.S. Both of our families are completely supportive of our plan to adopt and we know a child will fit in so well into our family gatherings and traditions.
Our House and Neighborhood
Our house was built in 1928, the same year the giant black walnut tree was planted in our front yard. Mike is already making plans for a treehouse in its branches and can't wait to teach a child to play on the rope swing. We love our house with its open floor plan, 4 bedrooms, and beautiful flower-filled yard. When our niece saw the room next to ours that we intend to use as a nursery, she said, "It's like a kid's room from a movie, it's so perfect!" Our favorite room is the kitchen where we get to indulge in our hobby of cooking tacos, lasagna, and chocolate chip cookies. It opens onto the living room where our cat, Ziggy, is currently snuggled on the couch with Mike.
Our street is quiet and filled with families with young children. Some of our closest friends live just 3 houses down and they can't wait until we have a child their 2-year-old can play with. Our town has great schools and we love that it's only a block away from an elementary school and playground. Just a few blocks in the other direction are two more parks with playgrounds, trails, and a kids' spray park. We love our town and its setting on the bay. We can access hiking trails and outdoor activities minutes from our home. Summers we go to concerts in the park with family, swim and kayak in nearby lakes, and take family camping trips.
From Us to You
As we sit on our couch, cozy next to the fire, our cat Ziggy snuggled between us, we try to imagine you reading this letter and what you might be feeling and experiencing. We can’t really understand what this decision means to you, but we want you to know that we support you. We also want to convey to you that choosing us to raise and love your child would truly be making our dream of becoming parents come true.
Yesterday we went for a hike in the beautiful mountains near our home. We were rewarded with sunshine and views of snowy peaks. We both love to spend time outdoors and we are so excited to share that love with a child. We imagine carrying a baby in a pack up the trail, sleeping under the stars in our tent, and seeing nature through the eyes of a child. After our hike, we went over to Misty’s mom’s house for dinner with our nieces and both of our sisters. They all live within 10 minutes of us and are all incredibly excited about us adopting a baby. We are very lucky to have such supportive and loving families.
Misty is a speech therapist at two elementary schools and helps kids learn to speak better. She loves working with children and seeing their faces light up when they achieve something that is hard for them. Her job offers paid time off for adoption, as well as holidays and summers free. Mike runs a program that provides housing to homeless people. He works with staff to offer outreach and services to those in need, as well as maintaining grants and budgets to fund the program. He plans to work from home more so he can have more dad time.
We seek balance in our lives and value hard work and play time. We can't wait to share roasting marshmallows around the campfire, making sandcastles at the beach, and enjoying homemade meals around the table. When we're not working or playing outdoors, we love to spend time with family and friends. Many of our friends have young children and they are looking forward to another playmate. Our community has so much to offer to families; concerts in the park, biking trails, water sports, and great schools. Our neighborhood school is only a block from our house and someday we hope to walk our child there. We want to instill the love of learning and education that we both share.
It was our love of learning that took us both to volunteer in Central Asia. It was there we met over 12 years ago. We have now been married for 10 years and our relationship has only grown stronger over the years. We are each other's best friends and we love to hang out together. We have always wanted children, but after years of infertility we came to understand that what we really want is to be parents. Adoption is such a special and amazing gift that will allow us to be parents. Our hearts are so full of love to share with a child.
We understand how important and beneficial an open adoption can be and we appreciate the role you will play, whatever you choose for that relationship to be. We will support this by sharing letters and pictures as well as arranging future visits if that is desired. Our plan is to talk openly and often about adoption, to make it a normal thing to bring up in our home. We will always speak about you with honor and respect and your child will know they are loved. We will tell your child about the incredible decision you made to allow us the opportunity to love and care for him or her.
You are faced with a very difficult decision and we hope that we can be a part of it. We think your decision to choose adoption is both loving and courageous! Thank you for considering us as potential parents for your child. Please know that we would love your child with all of our hearts.
With love and respect,
Mike & Misty
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