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Eugene & Joni
We are so very thankful that you are reading our profile. We have lots of love to give and hope that you will consider us as parents for your child. We recognize how important this decision is for you and consider it a blessing to potentially be on this journey with you.
Our Leisure Time
We love sports – Eugene was on the HS Swim and Dive Team and Joni had a small stint running track (emphasis on small). We are basketball, baseball and football fans and attend professional games regularly. Joni’s sister used to play college basketball for a Division 1 school and one of Eugene’s brothers is a High School Girls’ Volleyball coach. Joni’s father also used to play football professionally.
We love regularly walking and riding our bicycles in our neighborhood. We love to watch movies – at home or at the theater. We also love dining out – we try to visit new restaurants often.
We love to travel internationally once a year and since Eugene is a pilot with an international airline we enjoy his awesome travel benefits. Joni’s siblings live in New Orleans and we visit New Orleans every couple of months for long weekends.
We both are avid readers and this is an important aspect of our lives. We love visiting museums, zoos and learning about history and can’t wait to share all of our joys with a little one.
How We Met
Our siblings knew each other and actually thought it would be a good idea for us to meet. Eugene’s brother trains dogs. At the time, he was training Joni’s and her sister’s Marissa’s dog. For whatever reason sometime later, our siblings started planning for us to meet. Eugene lived in New Jersey because he was in the Air National Guard. Joni lived in Michigan. Antwon suggested Eugene call Joni because he figured they would get along. He passed along her phone number and was hoping for the best. It actually took Eugene weeks to decide to call. It wasn’t until 4 months later (New Year’s Eve 2014) that Eugene finally made the call.
Once we connected, we felt like high school students – we exchanged photos and talked to each other every chance that we could get. After a few weeks, a meet-up was planned in Philadelphia. We went on a dinner date, sightseeing through all the landmarks in Philly and had a great time. We continued to see each other for months and the following year Eugene retired from the Air Force (after a 22-year career) and moved back to Michigan. The rest is history! It has been a great journey so far and one we plan to continue together for many years to come.
Knowing who you are and where you come from is important for everyone. Ensuring a child has this information is in our opinion, vital to their development while growing up, and shapes who they are as an adult. Ensuring that a child knows they were adopted out of love is imperative. Also letting them know they were not abandoned or not wanted is a message that would be key as a child matures and starts to understand exactly what adoption is. It won’t be without challenges but positive reinforcement and always telling your child they are loved and will always be safe with you is the most important thing to tell them about their adoption.
We will start this conversation immediately and we would love to have an open relationship with the birth parents to help facilitate this process. There are children's books and other resources that we would tap into. This would not solely be a Eugene and Joni process - we would involve our families and friends. We both were raised to believe that it takes a village to raise a child and that "village" would be our support system not only while we are discussing adoption but for a lifetime.
Our Extended Families
Both our families live close to us. We have huge families with lots of children - we both have lots of nephews and a few nieces. We have a lot of support from our families as far as raising and caring for a child. Joni's parents live closer so we find ourselves around them a little more. Most of our siblings live in the same city. Joni also has siblings who live out of state as well.
During holidays we either stay in the state and split our time between both of our parents' homes, or we visit Joni's siblings out of state. During the holidays, we have to bring big appetites. Both of our families are great cooks. Eugene's mom loves to bake cakes not only during the holidays but every other week. Joni's mom tends to bake pies during the holidays.
We have Sunday dinner with Joni's parents and grandparents every week. Eugene's family regularly has Taco Tuesday at his sibling's homes (family feud games and "joking around" are normal events during these times). Before COVID hit, we would regularly attend professional football and basketball games with Joni's parents.
Our families are really excited about the possibility of us growing our family.
Our House and Neighborhood
We live in Michigan. We love our house, our neighborhood and neighbors. We have a historical home - the first home built in our community in 1915. We knew that we would renovate most of our home because it was older, but the home had really good bones. The home was built on 2 lots - we have a huge backyard (there used to be a pool but a prior owner covered it). We have a pond that we restored this summer and it now works!
We have 6 bedrooms and 6 bathrooms - we are in the process of renovating our kitchen and it is likely to become one of our favorite rooms in the house. Every home in this area has a story and it is really cool to walk around and look at all the homes - there are no two that are alike (and most are over 75 years old). There are two parks within walking distance (with a splash park, jungle gym, nature trail and tennis and basketball courts) and my parents are members of the golf club that their home borders (only 1 mile away). The golf club has golfing and swimming activities for children (Joni grew up at the golf club).
There are lots of children in this neighborhood - many people come from all over just to walk, bike ride or drive through. During Halloween, there are so many kids that we run out of candy in about an hour.
From Us to You
We are so excited to potentially become a part of your child’s life. Our names are Eugene and Joni. We met on New Year’s Eve 2014 and got married in March of 2018. We have a large extended family full of children ages 1 through 23. Our families are mostly located in Michigan and Louisiana. We have a strong family (and friend) support system that is just waiting to welcome your child into our lives.
Since the two of us became a part of each other’s lives, we knew that we wanted a family of our own. God’s plan has not yet allowed us to have our own children and so we believe that God’s plan has led us to be a blessing to another family through adoption.
We are very excited to meet you. Understanding how important communication is to most people, we would be happy to stay in contact. We are open to exchanging emails, phone calls and future visits. It is very important to us that you have a relationship with us that you feel comfortable with. We are willing to meet you and keep you informed about what’s going on and what we are doing as a family. Certain forms of communication are more important to different individuals and we respect that. As such, we are looking forward to potentially meeting and speaking with you.
Currently, we hold the titles of favorite uncle and aunt in our families. We are currently the only siblings on both sides of our families without little or big ones. As such, we have spoiled and loved on our nieces and nephews. Joni loves to be the tickle monster, puzzle master, cookie monster, Reigning Queen of “Hide and Seek” and of course the highly exalted ?" toy master. Eugene is the one they all want to wrestle and play rough with. We always know how to show our nieces and nephews a good time ?" we are the “children whisperers”.
We have great times with each other and our extended families. Working hard is something we do each day, we are blessed to be where we are in life and would like to potentially share all we have with your child. We have our dream home, dream careers (pilot and restaurant owner) and a great support system in our church home, our families and friends. We really could not ask for anything other than little people to share these blessings with (and yes ?" we want more than one child). We both come from large families and we would like to have 2 or 3 children in our family.
Traveling on vacations, visiting out-of-town and local family members or just relaxing at home ?" staying connected to our immediate families is something that means a lot to us. We would love to include your child in our lives and those of our friends and families.
We are actually penning this letter to you during the Christmas holiday and to say that we LOVE Christmas would be an understatement. Every year we decorate our home a bit more. This year our house is the most beautiful. We have our home lit up on the exterior. On the inside of the home, as soon as you walk in “the smell of Christmas” hits you right in the face. We spray our radiators with an evergreen scent and it permeates the house. We have Christmas garland draped up the staircase and over the fireplaces. We enjoyed decorating our tree and making sure that in every room that one walks in on the first floor - there is a “kiss or two” of Christmas. We want every guest in our house (and everyone who drives by) to know how important this holiday is to us. Even during this awful COVID season, we made sure to go all out with our holiday decorating to make sure that our Holiday spirit was stronger than ever. We want you to know that this is just the tip of the iceberg as to what we will do for any little ones that you could potentially bless us with.
We are very excited and just want you to know that we look forward to this potential journey with you.
Eugene & Joni