Patrick and Tianlu

Married Since: 2013

Pets: Yes

Stay at Home Parent: Part-Time

Other Adopted Children at Home: No

Other Biological Children at Home: No

We pray for you and your child and will continue to do so for years to come.

Patrick and Tianlu

from Texas

Patrick

Ancestry: Scottish, Irish

Religion: Catholic

Occupation: Attorney

Education: M.A., J.D.

Hobbies: Reading, Performance Driving

Tianlu

Ancestry: Chinese

Religion: Catholic

Occupation: Translator

Education: M.A.

Hobbies: Reading, Badminton

Baby

Preferred Ethnicity of Baby: All Races / Ethnicities

Preferred Gender of Baby: Either

Religion Child To Be Raised: Catholic

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From Us to You

Dear Expectant Mother,

We know you face a difficult choice for your child’s future. We want you to know that we are ready to welcome your child into our family and love them as our own. We pray for you and your child and will continue to do so for years to come. You can rest assured that we will provide a good and stable home for your child and will be loving parents. Our extended family—Tianlu’s parents and uncles and aunts and cousins and mine—are also ready to accept your child with open arms and support them and help them as they grow and learn.

We know how beautiful adoption can be, because we have seen, first-hand, the upstanding persons my father, uncle, and aunt are. They were adopted many years ago by a career military officer who took them all over the United States and to South Korea. Although they moved often, their father and mother provided love and support and encouraged them in school, sports, and work. They taught them how to work hard and be disciplined and supported them even when they made mistakes. They have grown up to become fine and loving people.

After moving many times, Tianlu and I have settled in Texas. Although we are not Texans by birth—Tianlu is from China, and I am from Tennessee—we both fell in love with the area shortly after we moved here. Our city is one of the most diverse in the country. It has everything a metropolis can offer, but also easy access to the beach and the hills. We have no plans to move. Our church is five minutes from our home, and there are Catholic schools just minutes away. God also prepared friends for us, Catholic and non-Catholic, even before we moved here, and many of them have young children. Our neighborhood has young families with children and grandparents who often care for their grandchildren, and room for them to play. We cannot wait to see the friends your child will make.

Your child will be our first, but certainly not our last. Although we may not be able to bear children, we plan to adopt more over the coming years (and we would even welcome twins now!). Your child will soon be joined by sisters and brothers, to play with and to teach, and to be a big brother or sister to. Your child will learn to share and to love and be loved.

Education is very important to both of us. We met in graduate school, and my career as a lawyer would not be possible had I not attended law school. We will help your child to make their educational dreams a reality. When I was little, my father read to me before bed. His reading to me helped me learn to read at a young age and set me up for success in school. I plan to do the same for your child and all our children. I was able to attend college and law school on scholarship in no small part due to my parents’ support, and I will provide that same support to your child, so they can live out their dreams, whatever they one day are.

Tianlu began learning English at a young age in China, and knows the value of learning a foreign language and the hard work and dedication it requires. Her knowledge of English and Chinese are the foundation of her career as a translator and interpreter. We plan to raise our children bilingual in English and Chinese and believe this will give them a solid foundation to build the life they want. Being in Texas, we are also confident that they will have access to good Spanish teachers and meet friends who speak Spanish at home. Also, my mother was a Spanish teacher for years and speaks Spanish fluently.

We do not know what the future holds for your child, but we promise to love, support, and encourage them and help them to live whatever life they choose and to reach their full potential as a brother or sister, son or daughter, and child of God.

With all our love,
Patrick & Tianlu

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About Tianlu

Tianlu is sweet and kind, and her experience running her own business has helped her to grow into an accomplished and outgoing professional woman. She works hard to serve her clients and take care of things around the house, including cooking most nights. She’s very much an organizer, someone who brings people together in groups. She’s a volunteer leader with her professional organizations, has a small reading group she started with friends, and is working on starting a group for a marriage-enrichment program. Tianlu is always there for me when I’m down or tired or stressed. She will be a wonderful mother, supportive, gentle, and loving.

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About Patrick

Patrick is bold, decisive, competitive, and great at remembering lines from movies. He is a good lawyer. He works hard and always has his clients’ best interests at heart. He is also a good friend. He’s there when his friends need him, even when the timing inconveniences him. He is passionate about the people and the things he loves. I feel protected around him, and I know he will protect our children with the same fervor. He acts goofy at unexpected times and makes me laugh every day. Whenever I see him playing with our dog, Lady, I see the father that he will be for our children.

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Our Home

We live in a single-family home in a small, gated community. This is our first house, and we love it. It has two stories—the kitchen, living room, and office are on the first floor, and three bedrooms are on the second. We also have a lovely little backyard with a loquat tree and some other plants Tianlu’s dad helped plant. The sun comes into the living room and kitchen through six big, south-facing windows every morning. On a rainy day, you can sit in front of them, watching the fences in the yard turn a dark, earthy brown and the Hawaiian good luck plants turn an even more vibrant red.

There is a retention pond in the middle of the neighborhood that usually stays dry, with trees and bushes all around it. Our neighbors are mostly empty nesters and families with young children. They come from all parts of the world. We know the ones closest to us fairly well. They’re friendly, loving people.

We are about 20 minutes from downtown where Patrick works, 10 minutes from Memorial Park where there are lovely trails to walk or ride bikes, 20 minutes from the Zoo and the Museum, and just 5 minutes from our church.

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About Us

We met learning Ancient Greek when we were getting our Master’s degrees. Patrick offered me rides home after evening classes so that we could spend more time together. We sometimes spent hours talking in front of my house. Somehow we knew we were going to get married six days into dating. We’ve been married for over 7 years now, and we still experience many moments when we feel like newly-weds. We know one day when our heads turn grey, we’ll become one of those couples who hold hands no matter where they go.

We complement each other while sharing many things in common. We are both traditional, family-oriented, curious, and lovers of languages and cultures. We love good food, animals, and kids. We have very different personalities, but these differences have helped us to become better people, grow our relationship, and hopefully to one day be good role models for our children, no matter their personalities.

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Our Lifestyle

We live a structured, healthy life. We both work during the day. In the evening, Patrick comes home for dinner. We like a balanced diet. Besides cooking Chinese food, Tianlu is good at grilling steaks and making vegetables delicious. Tianlu exercises regularly (which Patrick is working on), and we sometimes work out or do yoga together.

Thanks to Patrick’s job as a lawyer, we have a comfortable life. We have built up a small savings through the years, but we also go on vacations to spend time off with each other and family and friends. We enjoy hiking, going to the beach, exploring new places, and trying local food.

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Our Families

Tianlu was born and raised in China, where her family still remains. Her father works at the customs office in Zhuhai (“joo-hi”), a coastal city near Hong Kong and Macau. Before Tianlu’s mother retired, she worked for a state-owned import/export company. They were both the first in their families to go to college. They taught Tianlu to be kind, hard-working, and optimistic no matter what life brings.

Patrick’s parents live in Knoxville, Tennessee. His mother was a computer programmer and Spanish teacher, and his father worked as a salesman for IBM for almost his entire career. Patrick’s father taught him the importance of being honest and forthright. His mother taught him to be ambitious and to fight for himself and for others.

Since we have lived in many places in the past 7 years, we have good friends in Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia, and DC, as well as here in Texas. Most of them are married and many of them have children. We enjoy visiting and spending time with them.

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Our Sweet Dog

Lady is a greyhound. We adopted her from a racing kennel after she retired at age 4. She is a sweet, sensitive couch potato. Her favorite things include petting on the head, petting on the neck, and petting under the chin. She also enjoys her daily walks and off-leash sprinting time in the neighborhood.

Adoption in our Lives

Patrick’s dad, Jim, was adopted by a career Army officer and his wife almost seventy years ago. At the time, adoptions were entirely “closed” and Jim did not know who his mother was until he was in his twenties. Jim’s decision to seek out his birth mother was supported by his father but really upset his mother and was a source of tension between them until her death. And when Jim did find his biological mother, their relationship was complicated, to say the least. Having seen how closed adoption can cause hurt and cause tension within a family, we welcome a more open approach to adoption.

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Our Careers

Patrick chose to practice law because he wanted a profession that would enable him to provide for Tianlu and a family. Before deciding to go to law school, he had wanted to get a PhD and teach philosophy, but then he met Tianlu. Because there are so few tenure-track teaching positions in philosophy (and it would take many more years of school!), once Patrick and Tianlu got engaged Patrick decided to take the LSAT. He did well, went to law school on a full scholarship, and his early career has been very successful.

Tianlu runs her own language company that teaches and translates Chinese. It gives her the opportunity to speak, write, and reflect on her native language and culture. Through different projects, she also gets to tap into a variety of subject matters (healthcare, golf, oil and gas, government, law, etc.). She likes being able to set her own schedule and building long-term relationships with clients. The learning and adventures never stop!

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Cultural Diversity

We’re from two very different cultures. Patrick is American through and through, and Tianlu remains grounded in Chinese culture with its emphasis on family bonds. We both appreciate and enjoy learning about other cultures. We’ve both learned foreign languages (English for Tianlu and Italian, French, and German for Patrick) and lived in foreign countries (Tianlu in America, Patrick in Italy for three years after graduating college). No matter who we adopt, we’re ready to welcome them into our interracial and intercultural family.

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Family Traditions

Family meals are important to us. We pray and then share dinner every night. On Saturday evenings, we prepare a nice meal together. We love all kinds of food, and dumplings are one of our favorites. Whenever we are with Tianlu’s parents, there is a “Dumpling Day” when we make dumplings from scratch—mixing fillings, making the dough, rolling wrappers, and hiding “fortune nuts” in some of the dumplings (peanuts that are good luck to find!).

We love our weekend family outings. This usually includes going for a walk in the park, visiting the art museum or the zoo, taking Lady to the dog park, or getting together with friends. Sometimes we do something spontaneous and adventurous, such as visiting Austin or going indoor skydiving. We attend church every Sunday.

Since we started dating, we’ve been going to Easter Vigil and the midnight mass on Christmas Eve every year (except 2020). We usually spend the holidays with Patrick’s family and enjoy hearty, Southern, holiday dinners together. His mother bakes a killer pecan pie!

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Our Faith

We’re Catholic and take our faith seriously. We attend Mass every week, read the Scriptures, pray before bed and before meals, and have organized a Catholic marriage enrichment group with some of our friends in town. Patrick was raised Catholic and is the product of sixteen years of Catholic education, having attended parochial schools and private university. Before becoming Catholic, Tianlu had become a Christian in China during college where she participated in an underground church group. She joined the Church after coming to the United States and meeting Patrick. We intend to raise our children in the Church and send them to Catholic school.

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Why We are Choosing to Adopt

We have tried for years to have a child and have known for some time that we’re unlikely to be able to conceive naturally. We knew early on that we’d rather use the financial resources we’ve been blessed with to adopt––to welcome a child who needs a home into our lives––rather than trying to conceive artificially. After years of moving for school and work, we’ve finally settled down in Texas with a house and are ready to begin a family.

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