Carter and Kathryn

Married Since: 2015

Pets: Yes

Stay at Home Parent: Yes

Other Adopted Children at Home: Yes

Other Biological Children at Home: No

You are one of the strongest women we will ever meet. It takes someone very special to have the courage and love in your heart to do what you are doing. Remember that you are strong and you are making the right decision, whatever your choice ends up being.

Carter and Kathryn

from Alabama

 

Carter

Ancestry: English

Religion: Nonpracticing

Occupation: Web Developer

Education: BS

Hobbies: Video games, Biking, Hiking, Swimming, Sports

Kathryn

Ancestry: Scottish, Irish

Religion: Presbyterian

Occupation: Stay-at-Home Mom

Education: MA

Hobbies: Reading, Swimming, Biking, Crafts

Baby

Preferred Ethnicity of Baby: African American / Asian, African American / Caucasian, African American / Hispanic, Asian, Caucasian / Asian, Asian / Hispanic, Biracial (African American + any other), Caucasian, Caucasian / Hispanic, Caucasian / Indian, Caucasian / Middle Eastern, Caucasian / Native American, Caucasian / Pacific Islander, Hispanic, Hispanic / Middle Eastern, Hispanic / Native American, Hispanic / Pacific Islander, Indian, Middle Eastern, Pacific Islander, All Races / Ethnicities, Native American Indian

Preferred Gender of Baby: Either

Religion Child To Be Raised: Christian

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From Us to You

Dear Expectant Mother,

You are one of the strongest women we will ever meet. It takes someone very special to have the courage and love in your heart to do what you are doing. You are making the right choice; whatever you decide. We praise you and all women who have to make this difficult decision and know you are doing the best thing for you and your baby.

We are Carter, Kathryn, and Cameron. This will be our second adoption. It is with Cameron’s Birth Mother’s blessing that we would like to share his story with you. Cameron is two and half years old (summer 2020). His mother did everything she could during his pregnancy to give him the best opportunity in life. However, his biological father did not want to do the same. She looked to her family and they also were unable to help. At eight months old, she made the difficult choice to place Cameron for adoption. We were honored to be the family she chose. We were there within 24hrs. We ended up staying in her state for two weeks. The moment we first laid eyes on Cameron, we cried because we were so happy to have him, but also cried because of the difficult decision his mother had to make. She did not expect a great deal of contact with him as he grew. But during those two weeks, we took time to get to know her. She was a young lady barely out of high school. We agreed to open email contact and let it grow from there. She is now proudly considered part of our family as we all just clicked. We see her once a year or more if able and she enjoys video calls. We acknowledge how difficult this must be for you and will let you decide how much contact you would like with us.

We always knew we wanted at least two children. Kathryn has always had reproductive issues and we knew pregnancy was unlikely and would be difficult if we were able to conceive. After seven known miscarriages, the longest lasted three months, we knew that it was time to really look into adoption. We knew we wanted to adopt children one day. We took the miscarriages as a sign. We now look forward to our second adoption. It will be our last adoption for the next several years. Once our children become old enough to understand and can voice their opinions, we hope to become a foster family to give a safe loving home to those who need to know they are loved by us and others.

Our son, Cameron, knows he’s adopted. We read stories and have pictures of his birth family that he has access to. He also gets to speak with his mother, whom we refer to as Mama K. She is equally excited for us to adopt again and has even been buying a few little gifts for Cameron and your baby. Cameron has a big brother’s personality. He loves holding our friends’ babies and helping take care of them. He plays “daddy” to his toys and puts them in the baby things we have out to get him used to the idea a baby is coming. He loves dinosaurs, the color yellow, cooking (real and pretend), gymnastics, and swimming. He will start soccer in Fall 2020

(pandemic pending). Cameron is a jack of all trades and a master of none. He is ahead of the learning curve for his age for his motor skills area. He describes himself as a “funny dinosaur” (his words when I asked him to describe himself).

Carter is a computer programmer who works from home. He enjoys video games and being outdoors. He has a very quiet demeanor and personality. He is extremely loyal to his family and cares about helping his friends. Kathryn has an outgoing personality. Since the pandemic, she is a stay at home mom. She has dreams of creating her own business or getting her teaching degree once the pandemic has passed. Kathryn loves history and working with children. She has worked at several camps with various age groups of children. She has several close-knit friend groups who enjoy going out and exploring the world around them.

We love to travel as a family. We have been to 39 states so far, Canada, Mexico, the Bahamas, Ireland, Germany, England, and Amsterdam. We also enjoy outdoor activities like bike riding and hiking. We live close to a river and can bike down to see the boats or swim. We also live near several parks and playgrounds. We have 3 pets, 2 dogs and a cat, all named after Greek gods/goddesses. Kathryn’s sister lives in Alaska and Carter’s family is close by within our state. We enjoy visiting with his family when we travel. There are a total of seven first cousins all but one under the age of seven years. Our friends are all having children and Cameron is among the oldest of the set. There are plenty of friends for your baby to grow up and play with.

Education is important to us as a family both in and out of school. We have plans to send our children to several camps across the country as they grow to experience the world around them. We are the type of family who takes random vacations and day trips. We enjoy going to museums and aquariums. We don’t believe in hiding the truth if a question is asked but we do put things in child-appropriate terms. This goes for all things. We believe that we should teach them things instead of learning incorrect information or being afraid to ask. We want our children to never question our love and acceptance of their choices. We plan to raise our children in a

gender-neutral environment. We will never tell them they can or can’t do something because it doesn’t fit their “gender roles”. For example, Cameron loves to dress-up, color his hair bright colors, and play with dolls but he also plays sports and loves monster trucks. We don’t encourage or discourage his pursuits we just play however he wants to that day.

Thank you for taking the time to read our letter. We wish you all the best in the world. Remember that you are strong and you are making the right decision, whatever your choice ends up being.

Sincerely,
Carter, Kathryn, and Cameron.

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Our Lifestyle

We are opposites who balance each other well. Carter is quiet and reserved. Kathryn is outgoing and talkative. While we have different personalities, we also share many common interests. We are both nerds. We enjoy superheroes, Star Wars, Star Trek, D&D, and playing board games. Carter likes to read comic books/graphic novels. Kathryn likes to read every book she comes in contact with. We even have a library in our house. We enjoy doing outdoor activities together. We both have a sweet tooth and enjoy going to the movies. We enjoy going out with friends and traveling to new places.

Carter works from home. Kathryn is a part-time stay at home mom and entrepreneur. Carter works typical office hours in his office. Kathryn runs the household and schedules children’s activities and curriculum. We spend as much time together as a family as possible going on mini-vacations every month to just get out of town. We take a big vacation every six months or one extravagant vacation a year. We are members of all the local museums. We enjoy going to the parks and riding along the greenway by our house. We go out with friends to enjoy local events and those in the surrounding area. We live below our means to save for the future but we have a comfortable life. We enjoy learning about new places and things together as a family.

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About Kathryn

Kathryn is a very outgoing and social person who makes friends anywhere she goes. She has a loud personality and you can tell she is excited when she starts to talk very fast. Some of her hobbies are reading, gardening, cross-stitching, studying history, taking walks with family, and being social with friends. She is the planner in the family and always keeps us moving in the right direction or just out on a fun adventure. Kathryn has always wanted to be a mother and has worked with children most of her adult life. She loves to help children learn, grow, and have fun at the same time, and she exhibits this every day with Cameron. Cameron adores his mother and loves the time they spend together learning and playing or visiting Cameron’s friends for a play date. Since the pandemic, she quit her part-time job at a museum to stay home and teach Cameron and the two friends he has been quarantine with. She plans education activities and family outings where we social distance from others. Cameron has picked up her constant cleaning habits after eating and cooking, but is still working on cleaning up after his toys. Kathryn is an amazing person who has overcome many challenges in her life to build a wonderful family life and an extraordinary group of friends.

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About Carter

Carter is quiet and reserved. He speaks when he has something to say, but enjoys working in silence or listening to his podcasts. He is adventurous and likes to take small risks to explore new areas. He likes to rock climb and hike harder trails to see places people rarely see. He also likes to play video and computer games in his downtime. He is a DC universe fan. He is the most supportive person I have ever met. When I want to do something, he encourages me to think things through but in the end, I always have his unwavering support. He treats everyone around him with great respect. He is a loving son, father, and brother. He is our family’s rock. He puts us all before himself every day by doing his daily tasks and work, but can be a procrastinator and will sometimes put things off until they really need to be done. He makes sure to have a father-son day every month to show Cameron at his young age how much he loves him and enjoys being with him. He is an excellent father who takes time to show Cameron what he is doing. Carter plays sports at home with Cameron and teaches him how to put things together. Cameron loves to help his daddy, especially with mowing the lawn. Carter loves to try new things whereas I am the more cautious one. I have discovered so many new activities and skills because he encourages me to go outside my comfort zone.

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About Cameron

We asked Cameron to describe himself. He is 2.5 years old as of Summer 2020. This is what he said, “Cameron funny. I’m a Cameron dinosaur. I like bananas. I like Mickey! Woody! Buzz! Tiana! Mulan! I like Baby Shark. Mom, I don’t like that show. I want to go to the playroom!” That is pretty much who Cameron is. He likes to laugh and make others laugh. He is extremely sweet and loves kissing boo-boos away. He likes to swim and feed/watch the turtles in our local creek. His room is decorated in Toy Story theme. He loves to bring us, mostly mom, books to read. He is very active and likes to stay moving. Every night Carter is the last person to tuck him in after book reading with Cameron’s mediation videos before bed.

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Why We Are Choosing to Adopt

We attempted to have children before we wanted to adopt. We knew we would always adopt at least one child. Kathryn has always had reproductive issues. The longest she was able to carry was 3 months and has had 7 known miscarriages. We do not know exactly why we were unable to have children and prefer to keep it that way. After we completed our first adoption, we became even more convinced that we would want another child once the time was right. Recently, Cameron has become obsessed with babies and loves playing “daddy” with his toys. We began to discuss if the timing was right and became even more convinced that it was time when our family helped us in becoming able to adopt again. This will be our final adoption for now. We hope to become foster parents in the future when our children are ready and understanding. Being foster parents and adoptive parents has always been part of who we wanted to be as a couple and what we wanted to be as parents. Every child deserves a wonderful safe home. We want to provide that. Kathryn had her share of troubles growing up in a rocky household. That experience inspired us to move forward with adoption.

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Our Relationship with Cameron's Birth Mother

We have an excellent open relationship with Cameron’s Birth Mother. Cameron calls her Mama K. We started off with just open email contact and it has grown to where we have random video calls with each other. We hold similar views and just love sharing all of Cameron’s growth and skills. She is a wonderful young lady who is doing great things in life but was just not able to keep him. We consider her part of our family, like a little sister. We do have boundaries to keep a healthy relationship and we believe in honesty and open communication. We understand that Mama K needs breaks from time to time and don’t push her when we don’t hear from her for a while. We don’t think anything beyond hoping she is okay. We understand everyone processes things differently. She has had a tough life but is working hard to turn things around. We are giving her guidance as much as we can to help her. We hope to have a similar growing relationship with our other birth mother.

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Our Home and Neighborhood

One of the many blessings of the pandemic is that we have become extremely close with our neighbors. One of our neighbors is also a family with two adoptive children a few years older than Cameron. Most are NASA engineers or nurses. Cameron’s best girl friend lives across the street and is part of a blended family. We have an excellent relationship with the family and have spent most of 2020 with them specifically in quarantine however all of our neighbors have pulled together to help each other out during these times. We live within walking distance of a greenway with a shallow but wide creek. We enjoy going wading in the water, biking along the greenway, and feeding the turtles. Cameron’s future elementary and middle school is within walking distance along the greenway and we look forward to walking the kids to school along it. There are also 2 parks in opposite directions on the greenway with playgrounds and also where Cameron will take his soccer lessons. Five miles from us is the Tennessee River and its greenway connected by our local one. We have plenty of outdoor public areas nearby. At home we have a small playground area and almost every sport for kids to play. We have recently built a sun porch to enjoy being outside without getting too hot or eaten by bugs. We have built a mini-playground on the porch. We have a fruit and vegetable garden in the backyard. Two-thirds of our backyard is fenced in for our dogs. Inside the house, we have a separate game/playroom where we do fun indoor things as a family. Upstairs is our private space. Downstairs is our family area. Cameron has his own kitchen in our kitchen so he can cook while we do. We only have 2 TVs but Alexa is in every room to listen to music as we do learning activities or play.

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Our Pets

We are all big animal lovers. We have two 7-year-old dogs and one 3-year-old cat. Our dogs Apollo (brown) and Artemis (black) are 6 months apart in age. They are good dogs and our neighbors love to visit with them. They are obedience trained though we have slipped in keeping up with the fancy tricks. They love to love people. They bark but then will run up to you and sit or roll over on their backs for belly rubs. Artemis is an excellent babysitter. She is always next to Cameron watching to make sure he is always protected. Apollo is more stand-offish unless Cameron is feeding them scraps or filling their bowls. Cameron’s big chore is feeding the dogs in the morning and at night. He also helps let them outside with either of us because the child locks keep him in the house. We have a black cat named Diana. She loves Cameron. She comes and cuddles him as we read books at night before bed and helps tuck Cameron in. She does like to lay around in the main living area and just watch what everyone is doing.

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Our Family and Friends

Our friends are our family. We have a very select close-knit group of friends. Carter’s mother is very active in Cameron’s life. Carter is the middle of three children. He has an older brother who is married and they have a son 3 months older than Cameron. Carter’s younger sister has three children (one of whom is a foster child). Kathryn has a younger sister with two children. Carter’s family all live within the state and we see them often. Kathryn’s sister is in Alaska and they make sure to keep in touch despite the distance. Kathryn’s best friend Stephanie and her husband have two children close in age. Their eldest is 2 months older than Cameron. We are so close that they are our children’s guardians if anything should happen to us. Carter’s best friend Thomas and his wife just had their first child. Both of our best friends live within a half-mile of us in opposite directions. We have a blended group of friends who are extremely social and whom we do most of our adventures with. They are all in the process of having children or have had their first child. We also have several close friends in California. We met them while living out there for 4 years. Many have traveled to other parts of the country or within the state but we all remain in close contact and know we have a place to stay whenever we visit their areas.

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Our Traditions

We don’t really have traditions yet but are building them as a family. We spend Christmas and Thanksgiving with Carter’s family. We have Friendsgiving and Friendsmas/New Year parties every year around the holiday nearest to it. Other holidays we spend with Carter’s family or grill with our social friends whom we spend Friendsgiving/Friendsmas with every year. We bake cookies, play holiday games, and exchange gifts. Our wedding anniversary is around Labor Day weekend, so we take that weekend every year and travel somewhere new. One tradition that has carried over from Kathryn’s family is, as children she and her sister, would lay under the Christmas tree and look up at the twinkling lights to Christmas music as soon as the tree was finished decorating. We did it as a couple and now do it with Cameron. Carter’s family plays “find the pickle” on the Christmas tree at his parent’s house every year as well. The kids have really gotten into it.

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Our Vacations and Leisure Time

We like to take weekend trips at least once a month. Sometimes we spend the weekend; other times we are just gone for the day. We like to explore our local area and find something new and fun to do. The weekends when we are home, we like to go kayaking down a creek or small river, rent a boat to go out on the larger Tennessee River and do water sports, go to the playgrounds nearby, or attend local weekend events/festivals. We live in a larger city but still in a semi-rural area so we can enjoy the quiet of nature. On rainy or cold days, we stay home and play board games or video games. Other days we make plans to go see a movie, have a playdate, or visit a local museum. Every year we celebrate fall by going to a farm, going to Santa’s Village at Christmas time, and attending the springtime parades the city hosts. Once or twice a year we also take a week-long vacation as a family to spend time with each other and explore a new place together. We have been to Europe, Mexico, and Canada. We have also been to several large cities most notably Los Angeles, San Diego, Las Vegas, Atlanta, New Orleans, and Nashville.

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Cultural Diversity

Many of our close friends are in interracial relationships or have biracial children. We have friends of varying ethnicities. We know there is a struggle that we as white people will never understand and thus will be allies in gaining equality for all despite gender, race, or religion. We work hard with Cameron to make sure he is surrounded by people different than him both in looks and culture. We attend various cultural festivals as well to learn. We will do everything in our ability to ensure that our children grow up as progressive allies. We want a Star Trek world for our children.

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Education

Education is very important to us. Kathryn has a Master’s Degree in History with a focus on U.S. foreign relations/military history. Carter has a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science. We have already started putting money aside for both Cameron and our future child’s college fund. Whether they decide to attend college or trade school, we will help them pursue their educational and career goals. Kathryn has worked at several educational camps and in informal classrooms most of her working career. Cameron thrives with their activities and is ahead of the curve in some of his skills thanks to her and his language tutors (Cameron is learning to be bilingual in Spanish and English). Kathryn has the ability to read in 5 languages and understand 2 but cannot speak another language fluently. Kathryn and Cameron read books in English and Spanish together as they both really love to read. Carter is extremely good at coding and figuring out technical problems and building technology. We have each found our niche and encourage each other to continue our pursuits.

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Discipline

We are very lucky that Cameron overall for his age is a very good listener. We rarely have to discipline him. We keep him away from everything dangerous and teach him verbal warnings so he doesn’t get hurt. On the rare chance that he tries to do something dangerous, like climbing or doing something he shouldn’t because he could get seriously hurt, we stop the action immediately, get his attention, and tell him, “Cameron, you scared mommy and daddy. You could fall down and get hurt.” We have been moving away from this as he is getting older. If it is something serious now, he usually gets put in time out. Since he was little, we have given him 3 chances to make his own good choice. We start a dialogue to help him think about his actions and encourage him to make the right choice. If after 3 chances of asking him to make a good choice, we give him a time out. Our goal has always been to parent using positive reinforcement once our children are ready. We never spank Cameron. We are at the age of dealing with tantrums. If he throws a tantrum, we ignore it. He hates being ignored and prefers to be the center of attention. Cameron will usually change his behavior once he realizes he is not getting attention. The lessons are working because he is now learning to ask for things calmly and nicely. Cameron thrives under positive reinforcement parenting. Every child is different and has different needs. We hope to continue the same or similar parenting style with our next child. We want to make sure both our children get what they need from us to feel safe and loved but know their limitations.

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What We Will Share with Your Child

We absolutely adore Cameron’s birthmother. We refer to her as Mama K. She is like a little sister to us and we treat her like a co-parent. She gets frequent updates and has an open contact policy with Cameron through us. Sometimes she just calls to talk to us. We all work hard to make our relationship as normal as possible. She is an adopted child as well and tells us all the time she wishes she had this kind of relationship with her own family. We maintain honesty with boundaries. She knows that we respect and love her. We respect her distance when she is going through tough times she tends to retreat into her shell. She knows that we will always be ready to answer her call when she comes out of it. On our side, she knows all contact goes through us and we must always be present for video chats and calls until Cameron is an adult. The story we have all agreed to share with Cameron is the simple truth. Mama K loved him so much. She tried everything to keep him and give him the best life possible, but Mama K was having a difficult time and realized that we were the best thing for him. Mom and Dad will forever love him and Mama K for giving us the greatest gift someone can give another person. If he has more questions, we all agreed that he can ask Mama K and it will be a private conversation unless one of them asks us to stay. We are so grateful that we kept in contact with her and let our relationship grow naturally. We cannot imagine our life without them both in it. We really would like to have a similar relationship with our next child’s mother, but we understand and respect that everyone is different. We will have our own separate relationship with our child’s mother or family that we all agree with.

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