Q: Tell us about your home and neighborhood.
A: We have a cozy, 3-bedroom (plus an office) home in Southern California with a beautiful backyard full of fruit trees, a vegetable garden, and an open view of the hills. Our house is walking distance to several green spaces, swimming pools, and the elementary and middle school. We often see families walking around the neighborhood, playing with their dogs, and children running around in the grass. We feel lucky to live in such a family-oriented neighborhood, in a house with a beautiful view, and best of all - we are only a 10 minute drive from our downtown business district and the beach!
Q: When you have a 3-day weekend, what you like to do?
A: We like to spend our three day weekends with a mix of relaxing and adventuring. We are likely to explore a new neighborhood, try out some local eateries, take a long walk on the beach or go for a hike, and definitely make time for gardening and snuggling our birds.
Q: Do you have pets?
A: We have two pet birds. Milo is a parakeet (about 3 inches tall) and is 8 years old. He loves to chatter and can say approximately 50 words such as “good morning sweetheart”, “good job”, and “I love you”. Milo has many toys he likes to play with. Rocco is our 10-year-old, green-cheek Conure parrot (about 8-10 inches tall) and we adopted him in June 2019 after fostering him for almost a year. Rocco’s favorite thing to do is snuggle with his mom. Both Milo and Rocco love children and are very gentle with them. Because we love and respect all animals, we hope to show your child how to cherish and nurture all living animals.
Q: What do you hope to teach your child(ren)?
A: 1) Respect, admiration, and awe of all living things
2) Gratitude for the many wonderful things around us and the wonderful qualities in us
3) Have a critical and kind eye. Think with a critical, humanistic, and socially just lens
4) Take action - enjoy what we can, and do what we can. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, learn from others (individuals or communities).
5) Be humble. Be smart enough to know that we don’t know everything and the best we can do is listen to others and do your homework (especially those from marginalized backgrounds. Use your critical thinking).
6) It’s ok to say no. We don’t have to act or think in ways that are harmful or not authentic to ourselves.
7) You are more than enough. You are brilliant, embrace yourself. The longest relationship you will have is with yourself.
8) Family (the people who are closest to you in your heart, who care selflessly and love you fiercely) and community is integral. Keep nurturing those relationships
9) We are always growing and learning. We should always continue to stretch in new ways.
10) We will love you with everything we’ve got and then some. You are the most precious and important person in our life. We hope our love will guide you, nurture you, protect you, and most of all support you to live your best life.
Q: What will you tell your child about his or her birthmom?
A: We will be open, transparent, about their adoption journey, including the immense amount of selflessness, bravery, and compassion it must take for a birthparent to consider adoption. We consider the birthparent to be an integral part of our child’s story and a part of the family.
Q: Are you active in your church? Tell us about your activities.
A: We are not active in any church; however, we are active in our community. Jaya volunteers her time towards social justice and equity work through the American Civil Liberties Union and the California Society of Clinical Social Workers. Jaya and Frank also support local artists and making art accessible to the community by being members of a small neighborhood art museum that arranges exhibits, artist talks, and art classes. We also believe in helping our local businesses thrive by shopping locally and purchasing groceries directly from our local farmers. Jaya and Frank have joined a Community Supported Agriculture service in which they receive a box of produce from a local farm each week. In addition to being community-minded, we also enjoy celebrating many cultural events. In our house, the fall and winter season is full of celebrations such as Diwali, also known as the festival of lights and as a symbol of good triumphing over evil. During Diwali we light candles and make an elaborate meal to eat with family and friends. We also love celebrating the winter solstice with Christmas traditions such as decorating a tree, baking cookies and pies, and having a family dinner on Christmas Eve and Christmas day. Frank bakes fresh cinnamon rolls every Christmas morning, a tradition he has carried from his childhood.
Q: How will a child enrich your life?
A: A child will enrich our lives by allowing us to share our passions and re-explore the world through our child’s eyes. We are passionate about art, music, nature, cooking, gardening, and community action. We can’t wait to share our interests with our child and help them explore their own interests. Witnessing the pure joy and wonder of our child seeing, doing, and learning new things for the first time is something we are excited about it! As we grow and reflect on our lives, we find sharing our life lessons, philosophies, and musings about life with the younger generations to be very satisfying. Helping them make sense of a work that is full of wonder, excitement, but also can be confusing, scary, and uncertain feels like we are able to give a piece of ourselves to anchor and guide them.
Q: Describe your last vacation and/or day trip
A: Our last vacation was in Maui, Hawaii. We spent 5 days in Maui to unwind and soak up the sun. While in Maui we spent our time going to the beach, swimming, looking for sea turtles, eating at local restaurants, and taking hikes. Because we love being in nature we took an all-day drive to Hana, which is a winding road filled with lush green plants, overlooking the ocean. When we reached Hana we got a chance to see some black sand beaches and dip in the water. Our favorite memory of Maui is walking along Dragon Tooth Trail (named after the shapes of the rocks) and watching the sea turtles play in the ocean.
Q: Will you be a stay-at-home parent? If so, what are your day-to-day plans?
A: Frank works from home and Jaya works 3 days a week. Jaya will be a stay-at-home mom for 2 days out of the week.
Q: Will you be returning to work? If so, describe your day-care plans.
A: Depending on the age of your child, we will plan accordingly. When your child is an infant, we will hire a nanny for 2 days of the week and have Jaya’s mom nanny for 1 day of the week while Jaya is at work. Because we want our child to be around family as much as possible, the nanny will be either at our house where Frank can oversee as he works from home or at Jaya’s parent’s house where your child's grandparents can oversee. When your child get older we will seek out day-care or school plans accordingly. Our goal is to help make the transition as smooth as possible through taking time out to help with the adjustment and from the help of family. If needed, Jaya is more than willing to take an additional day off work.
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: Immense gratitude and awe in the bravery and love she must have. Appreciation for trusting us to take care of her child. We will spend every day earning her confidence and helping her feel some peace in her decision.