September 20, 2018
We celebrated Nevan's adoption finalization anniversary this year with a party complete with a giant Hungry Caterpillar cake. He was so excited, especially when he got to meet the singer/songwriter of the song "Happy Adoption Day," John McCutcheon!
Dear Birth Parent(s),
Thank you for taking time to look at our book and information-- we can only imagine what a complicated and emotional time this is for you, and we honor your choice to make an adoption plan for your baby. We hope that Adoption Services can be supportive. We are also available to talk if you want to get to know us better. We hope this letter and these photos will give you some sense of who we are, so that you can make the best choice for you and your baby.
About Us: Christina is 36, and Brian is 37. We live in Appleton, Wisconsin, in a single-family home in a quiet neighborhood near a park. Brian works in fundraising for a community nonprofit organization. Christina is a minister at a Unitarian Universalist church. We have a dog, Asher, a rescue black-lab-mix who is great with kids. Brian plays soccer, and Christina loves to dance. We both enjoy cooking, movies, live music, and reading.
Our son: We have a two-year old son named Nevan who we adopted as a newborn. It was a local adoption when we were living in Maryland, and we have an open adoption with his birth mother. We write and send pictures, and are willing to visit her (even if it means we need to fly!) but she hasn’t kept up contact, which we completely understand, but we would love to have more connection with her. Nevan is a funny, tender-hearted, energetic, and very musical kid. He loves singing, Elmo, and having books read to him. He attends day care at a local community center, which offers great opportunities for him to learn and socialize with kids. Nevan loves babies, and we have begun preparing him to welcome a sibling into our home. He’ll be a great big brother!
Our Families: Brian’s parents are Pat and Phil. He has five siblings (big family!)-- four brothers (Jim, Tom, Kevin, and Andy), a sister (Colleen), and a sister-in-law (Sarah). His parents, and most of the siblings live in Chicago. Christina’s parents are Michael and Mickey. She has one older brother, Mike, who is married to Michelle, and they have two sons, Ethan (8) and Greyson (3). They all live in Texas. Christina’s parents have an RV and they love to travel, and they spend a few months in the summer up in Appleton.
Our Values: Since Christina is a minister, we are active at our Unitarian Universalist congregation. Unitarian Universalism (or “UU”) is a very open-minded religion. UU’s all have different beliefs about God, the afterlife, and the world. We do agree that we should work to make the world a better place. Those are the values we want to teach our children. We want them to make up their own minds about what they believe, with support and guidance. We are liberal, politically and socially, and we hope to raise our children to value acceptance, diversity, kindness, and fairness.
Holidays: We celebrate holidays with friends, family, faith, and food! Easter brings egg hunts at church and home, and dinner with friends. At Halloween we trick or treat. Thanksgiving usually means travel to Chicago or Texas to be with family and have a feast, and Christmas Eve is spent at a candlelight service at church, followed by our (weird but special) tradition of eating sushi and pizza with all the church staff and families. Christmas morning means traveling to visit family. We hope to have a lot of fun with kids at the holidays, but we also want them to be generous-- learning to help others.
Us and You: We met in 2010 through an online dating site-- we bonded over our mutual dislike of tomatoes! Over time, we realized that our common values, and our desire to try new experiences made us a good pair. We got married in 2013. We share our household and parenting responsibilities equally and we really feel like “partners.” Christina had some childhood health issues and surgeries, which meant that she has known since childhood that being a biological mother wasn’t physically possible. She made that clear to Brian early, so we have always known that adoption would be how we create our family.
We know that adoption means that a lot of losses happen-- and we hope to help lessen those losses by being as open as we can with the child, teaching them about their birth family and heritage, and connecting them to people of their biological culture. We also are interested--if you are--in maintaining contact through letters, pictures, and visits so that the ties that you have with your baby can be maintained throughout your lives.
Thank you for taking the time to read our letter.
-Christina & Brian (and little Nevan)