Q: Tell us about your home and neighborhood.
A: We live in a 3-bedroom, 2-bath house in Florida. We have a large lanai, with screen covering the area around the pool, for outdoor living. We live in a quiet neighborhood near town and close to the local schools and shopping. We also are close to several kids' activities facilities as well as local parks and nature preserves that we often stroll through on evenings and weekends.
Q: When you have a 3-day weekend, what you like to do?
A: We live in an area where there are a lot of vacation hot-spots, so when we have extended time off, we love to hit the road for a family vacations. We often visit Orlando, The Keys, Charleston and Destin beaches. We love to spend time relaxing while enjoying nature and great local cuisine.
Q: Do you have pets? If so, tell us about them.
A: We have two Boston Terriers names Holly and Hemi and a Ragdoll Kitten named Finn. They are very sweet and super patient with our toddler. They are used to being involved in play with us. We also take a lot of walks in the neighborhood with them.
Q: What do you hope to teach your child(ren)?
A: We hope to instill in our children the importance of kindness and living a life filled with purpose. It’s important that they feel empowered and capable to pursue anything they feel passionately about. We hope to instill a hunger for knowledge, adventure, and true happiness in life. We will teach them that love is unconditional and that they are loved immeasurably by everyone who is part of their life story.
Q: What will you tell your child about his or her birthmom?
A: We plan to openly talk about the courage and beauty of our children’s birth families. We do now with our son. It’s important to us that they know that their birth mom chose to give them an amazing life by showing them the capacity of love and kindness that people have with one another. We will ensure they know that they were chosen and that their destiny is to be loved by lots of wonderful people who have worked together to help them have the best life possible.
Q: Are you active in your church? Tell us about your activities.
A: We are members of our local church and had our son baptized there. We are very involved in giving back and supporting the community. We work with not only our church on their giving programs, but also several community organizations to give back as well. It’s important for our family to be part of a church that’s loving and inclusive. We believe that everyone has the right to their own paths and their own spiritual beliefs. We just believe that love is at the heart of faith, and so faith will always have a place in our home.
Q: How will a child enrich your life?
A: We love our family and want more than anything to be a family of four. We want to be able to inspire another tiny human to take the world by storm and pursue the life of their dreams. We love being able to do activities and trips with our son, and would love to have another child to enjoy our lives with. We’ve always imagined the four of us going out on adventures, and we are so ready to meet the fourth member of our family. The privilege to influence a child’s ability to grow into a happy and confident adult is the most enriching job we could ever ask for.
Q: Describe your last vacation and/or daytrip.
A: Our last big family vacation was to Orlando to celebrate our son’s 2nd birthday. We rented a big house on a lake with a pool and invited his grandparents and cousins to join us for a few days at Disney. It was one of the most joyful trips, and he was able to go to sleep and wake up surrounded by all of his favorite people for nearly a week (including Mickey). He still asks to look at the pictures all the time.
Q: Will you be a stay-at-home parent? If so, what are your day-to-day plans?
A: Leigh is a work-from-home parent and Jay works from home a couple days a week. Our son is in daycare near our family’s church for a few hours each day, and he loves the socialization and education they provide. Additionally, since his Nana lives across the street, and his grandparents live 20 minutes away, he always has plenty of care. We never really use babysitters.
Q: Will you be returning to work? If so, describe your day-care plans.
A: Leigh has six months leave when we adopt a child, so she will be home full-time for ½ of their first year. Then she goes to flex time for the months following. After that, both kids would be in daycare for a few hours each day until they are school age.
Q: When you close your eyes and see yourself holding your precious baby in your arms, what are your thoughts regarding his or her birth mother?
A: We’ve seen firsthand the amount of strength and courage it takes for someone to make this decision, and it is not one we would ever take lightly. When we look at our child now, we think of his birth mom always and how grateful we are that she is who she is, and that her beauty created this amazing human. We think about the respect that we have for her, knowing she made such a difficult choice to ensure they both had the opportunity to have the best life possible. We admire her willingness to give him life and choose people she believed would give him the opportunity to become who he’s destined to be. Mostly, we think of how honored we feel that she would entrust such a privilege to us and how grateful we are that she saw our hearts and knew that we were part of his story. We can only imagine that we will have many of those same thoughts when we complete our family with this child. We know we will also have thoughts of gratitude for her for helping us find the children who were meant to be siblings and for completing our family by extending hers.