Aaron and Shannon

Married Since: 2014

Pets: Yes

Stay at Home Parent: No

Other Adopted Children at Home: No

Other Biological Children at Home: Yes

To us, being a parent is about loving a child unconditionally. It is important that we always laugh as a family, and celebrate when times are good, and be there to help when times are tough.

Aaron and Shannon

from North Carolina

Aaron

Ancestry: Jewish

Religion: Jewish

Occupation: Sales Manager

Education: BSBA

Hobbies: Outdoor activities, Camping

Shannon

Ancestry: Scottish

Religion: Jewish

Occupation: Counselor

Education: M.Ed.

Hobbies: Reading, Hiking, Camping

Baby

Preferred Ethnicity of Baby: All Races / Ethnicities

Preferred Gender of Baby: Either

Religion Child To Be Raised: Jewish

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From Us to You

In a letter such as this, there is no way that we will be able to adequately portray the depth of our gratitude for this opportunity. Thank you does not seem strong enough, but we will make do. Thank you for considering us as potential adoptive parents; you are helping us make our dreams come true. Moreover, thank you for your bravery. We cannot begin to understand the emotions that you must be experiencing during this time, but we hope that you are feeling comforted and supported as you navigate this journey. You and your child are already loved by us.

Before we share how we got to this point in our lives, we wanted to take some time to tell you about our family. We got married in 2014. During our marriage, we moved multiple times, including to another state and back. Our son, Aiden, was born in 2015 and we are in awe of him every day. Family is important to us. When we moved out of state, we had no idea how significant the absence of family would be. After our son was born, it became apparent that we had to move back, so we could share our lives with those closest to us. We have not regretted it. We now live in North Carolina, where we plan to stay permanently, with our three dogs, a cat, and fish. It often feels like a zoo, but our house is filled with laughter and love at all times. We share much of our lives with our parents and siblings. We celebrate holidays, we have family dinners, and we take family vacations together. Your child will not just be gaining another set of loving parents and a brother, but also a loving community as well.

Our personal exploration into adoption began after a really difficult year in our lives. We have spent several years trying to conceive our 2nd child. Several miscarriages, an ectopic pregnancy, and a surgery later, we were informed it was unlikely that we would be able to have another ‘natural’ pregnancy. After a great deal of discussion, we decided that we have so much love in our hearts for a child and we still wanted the opportunity to share it. Adoption has always been openly discussed in our family. Aaron’s father was adopted as an infant, and Shannon was adopted by her father. Therefore, adoption was considered the natural progression of our attempt to grow our family.

To us, being a parent is about loving a child unconditionally. It is important that we always laugh as a family, and celebrate when times are good, and be there to help when times are tough. We want to always be able to provide everything that our children will need to be happy, safe, and successful. It is very important that our children have the opportunity and ability to follow their own dreams. They will know that they will be loved and accepted, no matter what hobbies, interests, and paths they take in life. Your child will have the blessing of having a big brother who wants nothing more than to pass along the same love, affection, and joy in life and for others that he has shown to us over the years.

Your child will be treasured by our family. He or she will be loved beyond measure and embraced wholeheartedly. We are so looking forward to beginning this journey with you and becoming one step closer to growing our family.

Thank you! From the bottom of our hearts, thank you,

Shannon, Aaron, and Aiden

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About Shannon

I hope you are sitting down as this woman has blown me away since the moment we connected. Shannon graduated with a teaching degree and spent the first few years teaching high school students not only about English, but also how to find strength, self-esteem, and motivation to become the best they can be. After we had our son Aiden, she took some time to be a full-time mom and stepped away from teaching. When she was ready to get back out there, she found that her passion lies within helping others and received a Masters’ degree in Mental Health Counseling. After a successful first step in her career of gaining experience and understanding the best direction for her, she opened up her own practice and is providing a wonderful service to our community. Shannon has an internal drive that has helped her not only succeed throughout her life but inspires others to be the best they can be. When a task or challenge presents itself she dives right in and puts all of her heart into everything she touches. Over the years, she has been the foundation for our family to grow into what we are today and inspires the rest of us to always strive for greatness and success in everything we do. I could not ask for a better partner to share my life with and help provide a loving and supportive home for our soon to be growing family.

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About Aaron

Most people would describe Aaron as silly or funny. He is always laughing and playing. He enjoys the company of Aiden far more than he does most adults because he is able to be a goofball, without judgment. He finds a way to shed positivity on everything he encounters, and he can make a person smile better than anyone. What most people do not realize is that he finds so much joy in his life, because of the struggle that he endured as a young person. Aaron is a recovering alcoholic and addict. At 20 years old, he decided to get sober and he has maintained that sobriety for over 15 years so far. It is through that struggle that he has learned to appreciate the good in his life. He is the strongest and bravest person that I know. Aaron is my rock. He knows me better than I know myself most times, and he is able to offer me support and comfort, even when I do not realize how much I need it. Aaron is dedicated to our family and provides a lifestyle for us that is invaluable. He works hard to provide for us, and he loves harder, so we know how important we are to him. He is gentle and he is kind, and yes, he is silly. He is the best father because he does not take himself too seriously. He uses his humility to be genuine and transparent while using his humor to remind us all that we need to have more fun. I could not ask for a better role model for our children.

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Why We Are Choosing to Adopt

Adoption was already close to our hearts and part of who we are as a family. Shannon was born to a teenage mother and was adopted by the man who helped raise her at the age of 8. Aaron’s father was also adopted by his parents as an infant. Therefore, the subject of adoption has always been discussed positively and as a beautiful opportunity. In the Spring of 2020, as we struggled with infertility, we learned that our son was a miracle. Our life plan together always included at least two children and to be informed that our only option to grow our family, was to seek a fertility specialist. That was difficult for us to digest. The decision to look at adoption, however, was not difficult. We could not rationalize trying to bring a child into this world through IVF when we could provide a loving home for a child. We knew that adoption was the best route for us to take because it has already positively impacted our family a great deal. We cannot wait to add another addition to our family and are excited about finding a birth mom who chooses for us to be a family for her child.

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Our Lifestyle

Our lifestyle is well rounded. During the week, we focus on work and school as well as any extracurricular activities such as swim lessons, sports for our son, or time with friends. On the weekends, we try to get out and spend at least part of it outdoors playing as a family, going to the mountains to explore waterfalls, or embarking on an adventure to whatever event is going on at the time. We are mainly a spiritual family and celebrate most events and holidays with close family and friends. Although we like to have some sort of plan we are also known to be spontaneous when it comes to last-minute trips or playdates. Our extended family, on both sides, lives fairly close and we try to include them in many things we do as a family and make sure that they have strong relationships with all of us. Everyone is happy to see each other embark on our own personal interests and hobbies but we always tend to come together again and share those experiences with each other.

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Home and Neighborhood

We live in the suburbs in North Carolina. We have lived here for nearly 4 years. Our home is three stories, which will allow our children to have their own bedrooms and even a separate space for a playroom. Our neighborhood has many families with young children, and you will often see them walking in the evenings. There are sidewalks throughout the neighborhood, which allows us to take family walks safely. Our family enjoys spending time outside; therefore, our backyard is reflective of that. It is fenced in, allowing our animals the ability to wander freely, and our son the ability to have a safe space to play. There are a playset and a trampoline, next to our garden that we plant every year. We spend a lot of time on our back deck, which we have outfitted for all seasons so we can enjoy being out there year-round.

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Our Pets

Our pets are a major part of our lives. We have three dogs, all of whom are rescues. Nora is a 10 year old Sheppard mix, and she is the protector of our house. She takes that role seriously, as she spends most of her time outside patrolling our fence. Bella is a 8 year old lab mix, who is a smushball. She is our sweet girl, who can always be counted on for cuddles. Red is our 100 pound lap dog. We have no information on Red, as he was a stray that never left. He thinks that he is small, and he often tries to cuddle on your lap. He is Aiden’s best friend, as they sleep together every night. We, also, have a cat named Lily. She is 10 years old and believes that she is a dog. She and Nora are the pack leaders, and the others do not cross her. You can often find her bathing our dogs or eating their food. Lastly, we have a large fish tank that holds several fish. However, one of them is very friendly, and will even let you pet it. We love our animals and we consider them essential parts of our family. Our lives would not be the same without them.

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Our Families and Friends

Family is an important part of our lives. We returned to North Carolina to be close to our family and have the ability to share our lives with them. Aaron’s family lives less than 10 minutes away from us, which allows them the opportunity to spend a great deal of time with us. They often pick up Aiden from school or have us over for dinner. Aaron’s sister, Eliana, lives close by as well. She frequently spends time at our house and enjoys playing games and doing science experiments with our son. She is an elementary school teacher; therefore, she often incorporates education into her play with Aiden. Aaron’s brother, Nathan, lives in Israel with his fiancé. He has lived there for several years, but he travels to the states frequently to visit all of us. Shannon’s family, including her brother, Brandon, lives in the mountains, approximately two hours away. We travel there often to visit for a weekend or for several days over the summer. When we cannot arrange a weekend visit, we will meet them halfway between our houses for a meal or afternoon together.

We believe that friends are often like family. We have many with whom we share a great deal of our lives. We believe that quality friendships are an investment to enrich our lives, we do what we can to foster and grow them. Two of our friends have named us as godparents to their children. Shannon has opened a business with another. Friendships are an invaluable component of our lives.

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Our Traditions

The traditions that we incorporate into our lifestyle reflect the differences in our upbringing. Aaron was raised Jewish and Shannon was raised Christian. Before Aiden was born, Shannon converted to Judaism; therefore, most of our traditions are centered around that religion. We celebrate most Jewish holidays, Aiden goes to a private Jewish preschool, and our children will be raised Jewish. Judaism is a tradition-based religion, so participating in such activities happens organically. With every holiday, there is a set tradition to complete whether it is a specific prayer, a specific meal, or a specific greeting. However, it is equally important to Aaron and Shannon that both sides of the family have their traditions honored. Therefore, we incorporate elements of Shannon’s upbringing as well; for example, we celebrate Christmas with Shannon’s family. The most significant tradition that we honor is prioritizing family. Both sides of our families agree that spending time with each other is how we best demonstrate how much we love and respect each other.

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Cultural Diversity

As we mentioned before, Aaron and I share different cultural backgrounds. Navigating through those differences has not always been easy. It has required honest communication, even by our extended families. From the beginning, Aaron and I have been committed to respecting each other’s backgrounds, learning about them, and incorporating them where we can. It was after this exploration that I decided to carry the Jewish tradition myself and convert. These differences have often topics of discussion for us with our families and, at times, frustration, but one thing has always remained true: no matter the differences, there will always be love. There have been times that we have not fully understood the impact our differences have on the choices that we make. But there must always be an awareness and a conversation about those differences so that there can be understanding and respect. Your child’s cultural diversity will be treated the same. We will strive to learn and develop an awareness of his or her culture and have it reflected in their community to the best of our ability.

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Our Hobbies

Most of our family hobbies include nature. We enjoy spending time outdoors: hiking, camping, and off-roading. We believe that many of our worldly problems can be eased by reconnecting with nature. Whether that is through a camping trip in the mountains, or walking barefoot in the grass, we believe that being outside is restorative. We frequently go camping. We sleep in tents, cook over the campfire, and disconnect from technology. We love to go hiking, searching for waterfalls and hunting for faeries. Since Aiden could barely walk, he has been hugging trees and collecting rocks. Doing things outdoors is a great opportunity for us to do things as a family and explore how we interact with the world around us.

As important as it is for us to have family hobbies, we also believe that it is important to have individual ones. I have many hobbies; reading, crochet, meditation, and herbalism. I love learning about plants and herbs and how they can be used to enrich our lives. Aaron’s hobbies are more mechanical in nature. His hobbies often include ways to make our lives easier; for example, he loves working on our Jeeps and improving their functionality.

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Our Promise to You

Our promise to you is simple. Your child will be loved, beyond measure. We will work tirelessly to ensure that he or she is safe and happy, and given every opportunity to achieve his or her goals. We will speak of you openly. It is not our intention to ‘hide’ or prevent him or her from knowing that they are adopted. And we will support and offer assistance in whatever information they hope to have of you. You will be spoken of in a way of nothing but adoration and respect, as the person who gave us the most precious gift.

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