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Brandon & Marissa
Thank you for taking the time to read our profile and learn about us. Parenting is our greatest responsibility and we model grace, responsibility, generosity, and forgiveness in our home. This is our promise to you: your child will always know how much God loves them, you love them, and we love them. We pray for your peace and clarity in this decision.
We love to live in the moment and cherish the extraordinary in every day. We spend as much time together as possible and love to spend time outside exploring and go on family adventures. Marissa stays at home and takes care of the children during the day. She loves taking the kids to the local parks, libraries, and play grounds, exploring the community in which we live.
Being in the military, there are some periods when Brandon is away, but when he is home, he works normal hours and loves to come home to play with the kids before dinner. Every night, we have a family dinner and talk about how God blessed us during the day and how we were able to bless someone else. We love having friends and family around the table with us as much as possible. Marissa travels one weekend a month for Air Force reserve duty, and Brandon always does something fun with the kids. They’ve built easels, planted Marissa flowers, and never skip a beat when Marissa is away!
On the weekends, we love to go explore something new. Whether it be a museum or park, anything we have not done before is fair game. Sometimes when the week has been busy, we just find a new place to get breakfast or activity to do at home resting and relaxing. Through it all, we do life together.
It’s important to raise our children in a diverse environment where they will experience diversity of race, culture, and ideals. This means not only being around people who are different than them but also living in relationship with people who do not look or think like us. The military is extremely diverse. The military is a family. That has shaped how we interact with people who come from different racial, ethnic, socioeconomic, political, and ideological backgrounds. Our kids regularly play with kids of all ages, races, abilities, and backgrounds which creates opportunities for discussion about acceptance, understanding, and celebrating differences.
We believe a child of any race will feel accepted and loved in our family. We know we have a lot to learn and will put in the work. We will not pretend that issues surrounding race and diversity do not exist. Rather, we will equip ourselves and our children to handle these issues when they arise in addition to celebrating our uniqueness and differences. Our children will have toys that look like them, books written for them, and mentors who can relate in ways we can’t. Skin color and background does not define family; unfortunately, not everyone sees it that way, and that is something that our family will face together. Our children will feel confident in themselves uniquely and in our family as a whole through the openness and dialogue we will strive to foster in our home and community.
What it Means to be Parents
Parenting is our most important responsibility and has brought us more joy than we ever could have imagined. Teaching our children how to love, to forgive, to give and receive God’s grace, and to enjoy life’s every day blessings is our biggest privilege. We love watching our children grow, learn, and experience the world. Instilling Biblical values and character into our children then watching them live out those values by loving others and sharing their blessings has been one of the best parts of parenting. Every night at dinner, we go around the table and share what our blessing of the day was. The smiles and laughter that comes from those answers truly re-center us on what is important. Gabe and Ellie are constantly laughing, hugging each other, and even praying together. We are so excited to see how that love just expands with another brother or sister. Our prayer for our kids is that they will show their faith through their love, kindness, and generosity. Seeing that prayer answered will be our biggest privilege!
Our Extended Families
Despite living in different states, we have been blessed to see both sides of our family frequently. We spent Gabe's and Ellie’s birthdays with Brandon’s family at his grandparents' beach house this year, Marissa’s family made memories with the kids at our favorite parks, and Brandon’s parents and brother visited for fun fall activities. Holidays are spent with extended family as often as possible. This year we got to spend time with both sides of the family for Christmas.
We are so excited to share these extraordinary experiences with our next child. Our family and friends are extremely supportive of our adoption plan and wait with anticipation! They have prayed with us about this for over four years, so they cannot wait to make memories with our newest family member.
Having to move every few years has taught us and our kids what to look for in friends and how to be a good friend. We focus on spending intentional, meaningful time with people and develop deep relationships at each assignment. Fortunately, two couples we have been stationed with before and consider our best friends are also stationed in Virginia right now. One of the couples comes over with their daughter every other week for family dinner. We have also made lasting, family-like friendships through church at each assignment. These relationships have exemplified first hand in our lives that family is not defined by blood.
Our House and Neighborhood
We currently live in a family-friendly Virginia suburb. Our neighborhood has many children we interact with on our walks and at the neighborhood playground. There are parks, playgrounds, trails, and libraries all within five minutes. On our weekend “adventures,” we check out local family events, hike the trails at the nearby lake, or go to museums.
Our three bedroom townhouse is perfect for us. We have a fenced in backyard and an upper level deck where we spend time grilling out while the kids play. The house is at the end of a street, which allows the kids ride bikes, play basketball, and wave at all the neighbors. The basement is great for building couch forts and the main floor is an open space with two play areas.
We prioritize safety, schools, and proximity to a good church when we choose a home. We also have the option to live on military installations which provide a uniquely diverse, safe, and connected communities. We love getting to explore new places every few years and are thankful our children will get to grow up around the world.
From Us to You
Thank you so much for considering us to adopt your child and raise them in our family. We would be honored to be part of your adoption story.
We met through mutual friends in the Air Force while we were in college. We dated long-distance for a year but knew from the start that we were going to get married. After Brandon graduated from college, he was stationed near Marissa while she finished college. We quickly became inseparable and were engaged and married shortly before Marissa graduated. Two years after we were married, we started the adoption process because we knew God had placed it on our hearts and were ready to start our family. We found out we were pregnant with Gabriel the day before we were starting our home study and put the adoption process on hold. Two years later, Elliette was born and now that she is over a year old, we cannot wait to grow our family through adoption.
Our family values, conversations, and activities are driven by God’s love for us, and we are raising our kids in a Christian home. Every day, we are all learning to grow in our love for God and one another. We try to model this indescribable love in everything we do, and we want to share the joy we have been given with another child. Honesty, humility, and grace are fundamental in our family, and our kids see us demonstrate that with each other, with them, and with those around us.
As a military family, we are excited to travel, go on family adventures, and share new experiences with our children. We love going to church, being involved in our community, and building life-long friendships wherever we are. Our weekends are filled with outside activities, playing games, and exploring the sites wherever the military takes us!
We try to live simply and enjoy life’s little moments together. Whether it’s beach trips with grandparents, Sunday night "family dinners" with friends, or frequent trips to the library to find new books, we try to embrace and live every memory as a family.
From the beginning, we want your child to understand their story and know that everything happens for a reason. Our wish is that your child understands that you cared for them, and you made the most loving decision possible for them. They will know they were loved from the moment of conception and our love for them will never be circumstantial.
Our hope is for you and your extended family to be involved in your child’s life. We are committed to call, FaceTime, arrange visits, and send artwork from your child. If you are open to it, we would also like your input in naming the child. You are part of their story, and we want you and the child to know that from the start.
We pray you feel loved through this process and that your decision is blessed with every hope and prayer you have for your child.
Brandon & Marissa
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