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Nick & Kelli
We cannot wait to welcome another child into our home and hearts with unconditional love. We are privileged to be able to share a glimpse of our lives with you. We are committed to the promise that this child will know whatever you wish about your courage. We also promise to maintain a strong connection with you, if that is something you would want. We could not be more excited to be on this adventure!
Why We Chose Adoption
Our journey toward adoption has been many years in the making. Even before we were married 10 years ago, we discussed our desire to adopt. Years ago, we had no idea if we would be able to have children of our own, but we always knew that we wanted a family. We were blessed with our daughter, Kaelyn, in 2016, but more recently experienced some hardship. We lost a baby at 32 weeks due to a cord knot, and the delivery of the stillborn baby was a strenuous and dangerous situation for Kelli. Our desire to add to our family through adoption, however, has never changed, and we continue to know that our ability to build our family in this way is truly a gift.
Nick's older brother has two adopted children (ages 5 and 11). Watching them grow up and the happiness in their house is nothing short of amazing. Kaelyn is very close with her adopted cousins, and they could not be more excited at the possibility of having an adopted cousin of their own. In fact, they prefer to have an adopted cousin! We have an incredibly supportive family and group of friends with adopted and biracial children, and we look forward to hopefully adding to our family in the same way!
Our Life Priorities
One of the many things that makes the two of us work so well is that the number one priority in both of our lives is our family. While it may sound like a cliché, for us family is literally everything. We both come from large families with multiple siblings and a number of cousins, so we are used to family being the center of everything. Our parents and our daughter are our world. Even when we are both teaching and coaching, we make sure to incorporate family into everything we do. We are in constant attendance at each other's practices, games, and other work functions. To us there is no greater priority than the ones we love, and so we see no reason not to make our immediate and extended families part of our jobs and everyday lives. While we have large families, we are also extremely close with a number of our life-long friends who have essentially become our family. It is important to us to surround ourselves with this extension of our family, and it has created a fun and loving environment for our daughter, who has grown up with many additional "aunts" and "uncles," and now has a number of "cousins." We have established our mindset through our years of teaching and coaching: no matter how much we love what we do for work, it is a distant second when it comes to our family.
Over our years of teaching high school students from every background and ability level, we have learned first-hand the value of patience, understanding, and acceptance that carries over every day into our home. In an unfortunate time of conflict and division, we are especially cognizant of promoting love, learning, and empathy. We view diversity as something to embrace and celebrate. One of the concepts that gets thrown around a lot is the idea of being "color blind" when it comes to diversity. We understand the intent behind this phrase is to look at all people as the same. However, our experiences in the classroom and with friends and family of other races and ethnic backgrounds is that seeing color is, in fact, wonderful. In our opinion, acknowledging difference, and learning new cultures and perspectives should be one of the most important and refreshing parts of life. We aren't all the same, and that is what is so amazing. We look forward with open eyes to understanding different experiences and finding common ground with people regardless of gender, race, or creed.
Our House and Neighborhood
We live in a spacious four-bedroom, three-bathroom house in Northern Illinois. We have a large fenced-in backyard where our daughter chases around our two lovable dogs. In the winter/rain, we love spending time in our family room, playing games or taking in a family movie. When it is nice out, we enjoy sitting on the back patio, looking up at the stars by the fire pit. We take frequent walks around the golf course across the street and stop to grab a side of fries and fruit for a scavenger hunt. We also live three blocks from two different parks and athletic fields. On any given day there are countless kids running around the neighborhood, and the smell of the many barbecues that take place every weekend are up and down the street. We also live in one of the best school districts in the state of Illinois.
A quick 20-minute walk gets us to our small downtown area that has a number of great restaurants and a train station. We enjoy taking train rides to neighboring towns to meet up with family and friends for lunch. One of our favorite weekend traditions is walking to the Farmer's Market, having a quiet breakfast in town, and coming back to fun yard games and adventures.
Our Extended Families
Despite being what seems to be a small family of 3, our support system is substantial. We live within a few miles of all three of Nick's brothers and his parents. A favorite pastime of ours is spending weekends in the backyard, barbecuing and having bonfires as a large family. One of Nick's older brothers has two adopted children with whom Kaelyn loves to play. Needless to say, they are so excited at the idea of us adopting a child! Nick's extended family includes biological, biracial, and adopted children-and even twins. We are close with Nick's large extended family of aunts, uncles, and cousins, and are used to large, loud family gatherings with endless laughter.
We spend several days a week with Kaelyn's grandma (Kelli's mom), playing in the backyard, walking the dogs, and making seasonal crafts. We enjoy barbecuing and spending time at Kelli's older brother's house with his wife and three children, and look forward to multiple summer trips out on Kelli's cousin's boat. The holiday "Christmas PJ" party has become a highly anticipated tradition each year.
We are incredibly lucky to not only be surrounded by our extended families, but also a truly unique group of lifelong friends. Among this group, there are children of all ages, races, and religious affiliations. These friends have quite literally become our family. They are all eagerly looking forward to having another "niece or nephew" enter the family!
From Us to You
Hello! We are Nick and Kelli. Together with our daughter, Kaelyn, we thank you for taking the time to view our profile. We are a loving family who cannot wait to welcome another child into our lives!
We have been together for the past 13 years and married for the past 10. Our first meeting was 22 years ago as freshman in high school. We shared several classes through school, without knowing that our lives would soon become intertwined. After college we met up through a mutual friend. We went to lunch one day, and as cliché as it sounds, the rest is history. We have spent almost every day since then together. We were married in 2010, surrounded by the same friends that were there at the conclusion of our very first date. To know us is to know our love, empathy, and dedication.
We have a very unique relationship. We are in constant communication, we talk through our issues and we genuinely want to be with each other. We are best friends-a true team. It has become accepted when we attend work functions or other outings that we are a packaged deal. We simply don't go places without each other, and we support each other unconditionally. Our relationship is based not only on love, but on a deep sense of friendship as well. In our home we teach, we learn, and we laugh. We are excited at the prospect of continuing to teach, learn, and laugh alongside a growing family.
Despite this happiness and love, we feel incomplete. It has always been a hope of ours to embrace, love, support, and dream with another child, and that hope is now shared and wished for by our entire family...especially Kaelyn, who asks every night for a baby brother/sister to love for the rest of her life.
It is our promise to you to love and parent your child with our whole hearts. We promise to teach by example, emphasize the importance of kindness, laughter, respect, independence, and the value of family. We will encourage this child to follow his/her dreams, and we will dream right along with him/her—wherever it takes us.
We are committed to the promise that this child will know whatever you wish about your courage and your strength. We promise to maintain a strong connection with you if you wish and are happy to send letters and pictures to show you the amazing life that you have created. We are excited to visit and check in and build this community of love for your child as big as you would like. We cannot wait to and promise to welcome this child into our homes and hearts with unconditional love.
It is important to us to have an honest conversation with your child about adoption as he/she grows up. While we know that this will look different at each stage of life, we are committed to maintaining an open relationship that makes you, as an integral part of this story, comfortable, while making sure the child knows of your selfless and courageous character.
We have the utmost respect for what we can only imagine is an incredibly difficult decision and we wish you the best in your journey. We are an open book and we would be honored to share our love, joy, and lives with a new child. We are privileged to be able to share a glimpse of our lives with you and we thank you for your consideration.
Nick & Kelli
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