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Tony & Lauren
Adoption is beautiful, and we have an incredible amount of love to share with a child and their birth mother. We cannot imagine the decision that you are facing, and we hope you feel our love and appreciation for you. Being parents would be our greatest adventure-- a dream come true! Thank you for reading our profile and considering us.
We have built a life that prioritizes our relationship and a strong sense of community.
Tony cooks dinner most nights with Lauren serving as a sous chef. We eat together, chatting about our day, the news, and weekend plans. We spend a lot of time together, reading, doing puzzles, and trail hiking with our dog, Homer.
On the weekends, we often travel because we've lived in a few states and have friends all over the country. On weekends at home, we love to check out local artists and attend local festivals.
Our community always has family events going on, and we can't wait to learn more about them as our family grows.
While we are both Caucasian, we are so lucky to have been raised in diverse communities, went to racially diverse schools, and were taught to love and value people from backgrounds that are different from ours. Racial diversity is a priority, and we also highly value differences in religious beliefs and life experiences. We intentionally seek out opportunities to embrace other cultures; we love to connect with people through what we have in common and also learn how we're different and what makes each family unique.
For us, embracing diversity is not an item on the "to do" list. It's built into who we are as individuals and the parents we want to be. Part of this is because our families include multiracial members and adopted children. Inclusion is a core value for us. We have a strong foundation—and we are ready to do everything a child needs to feel proud of their history. We will fully integrate this child's cultural heritage and unique needs into the fabric of our family.
Qualities We Love, Admire and Respect in Each Other
Lauren About Tony: Tony is the most steady person I know. He is calm when things are crazy and provides security when things feel uneasy. He definitely looks intimidating, but he loves people in a such a gentle, compassionate way. There's nothing he won't do for the people he loves. I cannot wait to see him with our child. I can already see him making sure homework is done, and then throwing a dance party in the loft before bedtime stories. Tony is an incredible person, and he will be the best dad a child could imagine.
Tony About Lauren: Lauren is a kind and strong woman. One of my favorite memories of her is when she delivered meals to our next-door neighbor after they had their first child, just months after we lost our son. Her compassion for others is unmatched. She is also extremely organized and is the perfect blend of silly and serious. She keeps our "family goals" moving forward, making sure that we take quick weekend trips, annual vacations, and that our finances are in order so that we can meet our long-term family goals. Lauren has my utmost respect and will be an incredible mom.
Our House and Neighborhood
We live in a large, diverse city in North Carolina, with fantastic food, parks, and activities for families. We chose this city and neighborhood specifically because of the diversity and opportunities for our family to experience many cultures, make friends of all ages, races, and religious backgrounds, and because the schools are among the top in the state. We are within 25 minutes of an incredible children's museum, and even an amusement and water park. There are festivals almost every weekend, and the holiday ones are big! Fourth of July is the best--people gather in their boats on the lake, swim all day, and stay up late for the fireworks show. We love where we live!
Our house has 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and backs up to a nature conservatory. The open floorplan gives us lots of space to grow—we can't wait to fill it with children's toys and books. The best part of the house is the backyard; we can walk to the lake in 3 minutes, and it connects to a trail for walking, biking, and horseback riding. Homer, our dog, starts begging for a walk at 4:45 p.m. every day! Our neighborhood also has a private pool, and we love having our godchildren and nephews over on the weekends.
Our Extended Families
We live within 1.5 hours of all sides of our families and love to spend time with them. Tony has an amazing blended family, complete with 2 brothers, a sister, and 4 hilarious nephews. Tony is the shortest son at 6'3"! Continuing a tradition with Tony's father and grandfather, we love to kayak, fish, and hang out at the lake Tony grew up on-it's only 20 minutes away. Tony still remembers where all the good spots are for digging up worms for bait. He can't wait to teach our child the secret family recipe for catfish stew and homemade ice cream.
Lauren is an only child—her family is small but strong! Lauren's favorite family tradition is Halloween. Her parents' neighborhood has more than 300 trick or treaters every year! The whole family dresses up, her father puts out fog machines and jack-o-lanterns, and we hand out candy for HOURS. Lauren's favorite part is the Halloween music in the background, and Tony's favorite part is the candy. Even though it's cheesy, we are soooo excited for the day when we can have a matching family costume-we already have ideas!
Our families are so excited to welcome our child into the family. After four grandchildren, Tony's stepfather says number 5 will complete his basketball team!
From Us to You
As we began writing this letter, thoughts of love and excitement overwhelmed us. Above all else, we respect your strength, and we love the way you love your growing baby. We are so grateful that you are reading our profile and considering us as adoptive parents. Thank you.
We have been married for 11 years, and we live a comfortable and secure life. We have shared the highest of highs and are so incredibly ready to celebrate the growth of our family. One of the experiences that has most prepared us to be parents was the traumatic losses of 2 micro-preemies (babies born too early and usually do not survive) --which brought us to our knees in pain. We also learned more about ourselves, each other, and our incredible support system than we ever knew possible. Grieving our losses gave us the opportunity to pivot and focus on what is most important to us as husband and wife and to us as the parents we want to be. We want to grow our family through adoption only and offer a unique perspective because of our experiences.
Our values are rooted in our belief in God, and we will raise a child with strong values of love, kindness, and resilience. We lead with love, and that can be seen in all aspects of our life. Tony connects with people through food--sharing recipes and family favorites helps us learn about people's backgrounds and happy memories. Lauren's family traveled a lot when she was young, and her father is a museum nerd, so she likes to connect with people through history, learning how perspectives are different and equally valuable.
We are excited to embrace this child's cultural foundation and weave it into our daily life. We feel uniquely prepared to parent a child with a different background (race or otherwise) because we've spent our lives building a diverse community. Our child will be surrounded by families and children who look like them. We spend a lot of our time working on anti-racism community building, gender equality, and other social justice issues. We want this child to know that we love them, and we are also working tirelessly to support inclusion and social justice as a whole. We will raise our children to know, without a doubt, that they matter.
While we are working to prepare for the "hard parts" of parenting, we are also incredibly excited for all of the fun! We can't wait to teach this child how to swim in granddaddy's pond, play tee ball in the backyard, and read to them every night before bed. Nevie (Lauren's mom) already has a zoo membership and over 200 (!!!) children's books; Papa T (Tony's dad) has the perfect kid's fishing pole, and our nephews and friends' children can't wait for another best friend! These everyday moments, including spending way too long searching for lost shoes, are the pieces that build a childhood. This child will grow up happy, supported, and loved unconditionally.
We are overjoyed for the future of our family and will welcome you to be part of it. We are open to sending letters, photos, emails, and arranging annual visits. We will do everything we can to support the child's desire to learn about their history, birth mother, and birth family. There is no doubt that adoption is beautiful, and we know that everyone involved will experience a wide range of emotions. We will hold space for those complex feelings, and honor that this child will need support from us, other children and families like ours, and from you. We are grateful for you and are holding you and this sweet growing baby in our prayers daily.
Peace and love,
Tony & Lauren