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Joe & Valerie
Thank you for taking the time to read our profile! We are grateful for the amazing opportunity to grow our family through adoption. We are parents to one child and want nothing more than to be parents again - sharing our lives, our home, and our hearts with another child. We would be honored to be considered in your adoption journey!
Education We will Provide
Providing an excellent education to our children is a top priority. We both came from families of teachers and were taught about the importance of education at an early age. We plan to send our children to top schools in the area, but we understand that a child's education is not limited to just going to school. We both love to read and hope to foster a lifelong love of reading and learning in our children by reading to them daily.
We also want to offer our children fun, educational after-school activities. We are starting an after-school program that will teach children computer coding, as we believe this is an important professional skill. Of course, if our children do not like computer coding, we will not force them to attend this program. We simply want to provide that opportunity to them. We will encourage our children to pursue any educational subject that interests them -- art, music, science, whatever excites them!
Finally, we have already saved to allow Madeline and any future children we adopt to attend college with no debt. We both went to college, as well as graduate school, and we realize that our experiences would have been easier if we did not graduate with student loans. We are committed to ensuring that our children can attend any college of their choosing, debt-free.
Our Dreams for this Child
Our dream for any child we adopt is for that child to be happy, healthy, and know that they are loved. We want our child to know that they have a strong, supportive circle of family members and friends who loves and cares for them. We want to instill within our child the confidence and strength to follow their dreams. We want our child will learn to see the good in the world and to be inspired to help others. We want our child to learn to be a problem-solver. We want our child to be both a good leader and a good listener. We want our child to be brave. To do the right thing in spite of the difficulty. We want our child to have a joyful childhood, full of laughter, learning, and time with family and friends. Finally, we want our child to love themselves and to love life. To find what they care about and pursue it with a passion.
Adoption in Our Lives
A family member of Joe's placed a child for adoption when he was in middle school. Watching that child grow into the wonderful woman she is today is a beautiful thing. She is strong, brave, and kind. She's in college now, studying to be a veterinarian. Her adoptive family raised an amazing young woman.
Joe's family member, in providing this chance for her child and this blessing for the adoptive family, did one of the bravest and most difficult things she could do. Seeing all of them go through this process convinced him that adoption is a beautiful thing. A gift that can multiply love - something that truly can make all the difference in the world to a child and a family.
We've always thought about adopting or fostering in part because of his family's experience with the process. Using our own blessings to play the same role in another child's life.
Our House and Neighborhood
We live in a neighborhood in the suburbs of Kansas City that is wonderful for children. One of the top elementary schools in the state is within walking distance of our house. There are a lot of playgrounds within a few minutes of our house, as well as beautiful nature trails for walking and biking. One of our favorite family activities is to spend the entire day outside, riding our bikes or walking along the trails, going to the playgrounds, and having a picnic at the end of the day.
Our neighborhood also has several swimming pools, as well as a children's swim team that our daughter, Madeline, is on. There are a lot of social events for children on the swim team and their families, including barbecues and parties on the Fourth of July and Labor Day.
Madeline has also made friends at the preschool at our nearby church. We have enjoyed getting to know the children and families through the many activities there. We love the annual Christmas play, Thanksgiving Feast, and costume contests on Halloween!
Our house is wonderful for children. We have a great bedroom with a wonderful window seat and plenty of space for books and toys ready for another child. A massive playroom takes up our entire basement, filled with toys - from My Little Ponies to Lego pirate ships.
Our Extended Families
Our parents, siblings and other relatives all enjoy spending time with our daughter, Madeline, and can't wait to share our family traditions, joys, and love with another child. Joe's parents live nearby and love being grandparents! Joe's mother is a retired children's librarian and often takes Madeline to the library to read children's books, play with puppets, and solve puzzles. Joe's father is an expert woodworker and loves to build dollhouses, handmade toy chests, and other wonders. Joe's sister, Laura, also lives in the area with her husband and stepson. Laura works for an educational toy company and often brings new toys to our house to share.
Valerie's family lives in California, and we visit them at least twice a year for extended vacations. Valerie's mother is a retired French teacher and is teaching Madeline how to speak French. Valerie's father loves to teach our daughter how to play ping-pong and board games. Valerie's sister, Michelle, is expecting her first child in March and loves being an aunt. Michelle and her husband currently have one "fur baby," a corgi named Logan, who is wonderful with children. Valerie's brother, Ned, lives near the beach and is teaching Madeline about swimming in the ocean. Everyone in our extended family is excited about growing our family through adoption.
From Us to You
We are so grateful to be considered in your adoption journey. Your decision takes a tremendous amount of strength and courage, and we want you to know that you have our love and respect.
We want to share a little bit about ourselves so that you know who we are, how we became a family, and why we would love to adopt a child. We have been together since we met in college over fifteen years ago. We clicked instantly, finding that we had a lot in common and enjoyed each other's sense of humor. After graduation, Joe joined the Army, so we continued dating in a long-distance relationship. But Joe soon received orders that he was being deployed to Iraq, so we got married in a small ceremony before he was sent overseas. We then spent the next two years living on different continents. We were finally able to begin our lives together in the fall of 2009, when Joe started business school at the same place where Valerie was finishing law school.
Our time apart was difficult, but it taught us how much we valued our relationship and each other. Words cannot express how happy Valerie was to have Joe return home safely and for the two of us to finally live in the same place! That time in our relationship tested us but ultimately made us stronger.
We always knew that we wanted to be parents, and we had shared our dreams for a family early in our relationship. However, after Joe left the Army, we delayed having children so that we could finish graduate school and begin our careers. We wanted to pay off our student debt and build up our savings before starting our family. For the next several years, we took jobs that paid well but required very long hours. After five years of what felt like non-stop work, we achieved our goals of paying off our student debt, buying a house in San Francisco, and starting a family. We welcomed our daughter Madeline in March 2015.
Becoming parents was the most wonderful and profoundly transformative experience of our lives. We love taking care of Madeline and watching her grow! However, our demanding jobs in San Francisco made it difficult for us to spend the time that we wanted with our daughter. So, we quit our jobs and moved from San Francisco to Kansas. Because the cost of living was lower in Kansas, we could afford to spend more time with our daughter.
Shortly after moving to Kansas, we decided that we wanted to have another child. We got pregnant twice but miscarried both times. Our doctors recommended fertility treatments, but we declined, as we felt that adoption would be the best way to grow our family. Having Madeline taught us that we loved the experience of raising a child. Madeline, although genetically related to us, is her own person and very different from both of us! Being a parent means loving a child unconditionally and appreciating their individuality.
We are happy to stay in touch with you throughout the years - as long as you would like! We can stay in written contact via American Adoptions, and we can also exchange photos and videos that way. Your child will know you and will know that he or she is loved beyond measure.
Thank you for giving us the chance to share our hearts with you.
Joe & Valerie
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