August 17th, 2017
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Colleen and Neil

Hello

We are so happy and grateful to be able to introduce ourselves to you.  We have so much respect and appreciation for your journey and the decisions you are facing.  We thank you for taking the time to learn more about us and consider us as adoptive parents for your child.

We are so excited to be parents and are prepared to offer a loving, fun and supportive home to your child.  We have so much love to share and are grateful that we can grow our family through

adoption. We hope that our profile gives you a sense of our unique personalities and our life together as you consider the best plan and situation for yourself and your child.  Whatever you choose we wish you peace, love and support.

Out and about near home

Our Story

Our love story began with a miniature golfing date in 2005.  Colleen won the game that day but Neil claims he let her win. He saved the mini golf score card, knowing from the start that this relationship was going to be something special.

We love camping, baseball games, spending time at the beach, going to movies, and just hanging out at home with our cat.   We are both Social Workers and work in similar positions so we enjoy discussing our work and consulting with one another for professional advice as well. Most

important to us is spending time together, whatever we are doing.  We are fortunate that (after many years of hard work) we are settled in careers that offer flexibility and support so that our child will always be our #1 priority.

We married in 2008 in a traditional wedding surrounded by our friends and large extended families. The first dance at our wedding was to a song by the Dixie Chicks called

“Easy Silence”. We still believe this lyric describes our relationship: “I come to find a refuge in the easy silence that you make for me”.

This is to say that our relationship and our home really feel safe and supportive. We have been trying to become parents for quite a while now and we have become even closer and stronger as a couple through that process. We will offer your child that safe, supportive, loving environment that we have come to enjoy as a couple.

Neil Shares About Colleen

Colleen is thoughtful, insightful and practical but also has a huge heart.  I love seeing her smile and laugh, which she does often.  She also makes me laugh quite easily with her ability to recount stories and see the humor in many situations.

Colleen loves going to amusement parks and water parks in the summer.  She is always coming up with different and interesting things for us to do.  In the summer she is obsessed with being outside – at the beach, dining on an outdoor patio, camping, jogging, anything in the sun.  I know she looks forward to continuing these things with our child.

Colleen has a funny little dance she does when something makes her really happy – this could be a stroke of good luck or (more often) a delicious meal. It just shows me how much joy she finds in the little things in life. It also shows me that she is not afraid to be silly. I really look forward to seeing her pass on these little quirks to our child.  These are just a few examples of her sense of fun and her sense of caring. She works as a therapist and has so much compassion for people and a true desire to help.

Colleen is also brave and persistent.  We have had some disappointments in life and she has responded with such resilience.  She is always taking on new challenges. I know this is a greatquality that she will be able to pass on to our child.  I joke that nothing scares her except haunted houses (a true story!)

Colleen lights up when spending time with children.  She takes such good care of her therapy patients, her family, our cat, and me.  Just as important, she takes good care of herself so that she can continue to be a great caregiver, support, and example to others.  I cannot wait to see Colleen in action as a mom.

our local playground (2)

Colleen Shares About Neil

Neil is incredibly kind, patient, thoughtful, and loyal.  He loves to play guitar, ride his bike, camp, and go to Cubs games.  Neil is not afraid to try something new.  On a recent camping trip he revealed that he had never been canoeing before but was more than willing to try.  Within a few minutes he was canoeing like a pro.  He will research the best way to do anything, from making the best cup of coffee to having the best workout routine.  Whenever I’m not sure how to solve a problem, Neil is the first person I call on.  I think these will be great qualities in a dad.  I can’t wait to see guiding our child through life.  We have been through some tough times and Neil has been such a great source of strength and support along the way.  Even though he has many interests and works hard, I know that he most enjoys spending time with me doing simple things.

I really feel safe and secure with Neil.  He is so respectful and caring.  He is affectionate and says “I love you” often.  Every time we visit my grandma, he helps her with her computer or blu-ray player. She is so grateful for the help but even more interesting is how much he enjoys spending time with her and hearing her stories.

I have seen Neil’s patience, sense of calm, and also his silliness when he spends time with children.  First of all, he is wonderful at his job working with teenagers.  But outside of work he enjoys his nephews and our friends’ children.  He jumps right in – whether it is playing games, making silly voices and faces, or helping a child understand something new about their environment.  I know he will make the most amazing dad.

Traditions

These are some of the things we most enjoy as a couple:

Holidays. Celebrating Christmas with Neil’s extended family of up to 30 people, sharing laughter and enchiladas (a family recipe passed down from Neil’s grandmother).  Christmas Day with Colleen’s family, snacking on breakfast and opening gifts for hours.

Family vacations. Getting together with our families is always a lot of fun.  Colleen’s family enjoys renting a house near Traverse City, MI for a week in the summer.  Neil’s parents spend time in Florida every winter and we have an open invitation to join them.  Of course, we plan on starting our own family vacation tradition as well.  We have especially loved visiting New York City and Playa del Carmen, Mexico together.

Chicago sightseeing.  We both grew up outside the city but visited often with our families.  Neil remembers his first Cubs game and shopping on Michigan Ave.  Colleen remembers Christmas time with all the store windows decorated and breakfast with Santa.  Even though we have lived in Chicago for many years, we are always finding something new to do.

 

We also love…

  • Camping
  • Spending time at the beach
  • Going to movies and plays
  • Reading
  • Yoga
  • Jogging and Biking
  • Road trips
  • Cooking
  • Going out to eat (sushi and tacos are favorites)
  • Staying in for movie nights or game nights

Our Home and Community

We live in a neighborhood on the northwest side of Chicago.  We enjoy living in such a diverse part of the city.  Many children live nearby and take advantage of the many kid friendly activities in our neighborhood.  Within 3 blocks of our home there are 2 high schools, 2 universities, and an elementary school.  For fun, there is a soccer field, baseball field, track, running and cycling path along the Chicago River, a swimming pool with a splash pad and kiddie pool, a fishing dock on the river, and a large playground.  We look forward to playing and splashing with our child and someday teaching him or her to ride a bike, climb the jungle gym, or hit a baseball.  Because we live in a quieter neighborhood a few miles from downtown we feel we have the best of both worlds – we can enjoy a smaller town feel in our neighborhood but can still take advantage of all that city life offers.

We enjoy our quiet time at home most of all. Our home is very comfortable – our big cozy couch

gets a lot of use. We are also in the kitchen quite a bit. Colleen loves cooking and we look forward to sharing family meals together with our children. We can picture weekend mornings at home eating pancakes and watching cartoons, just like when we were children.

Colleen's side of the family

Meet Colleen’s Family

Colleen’s family is originally from Chicago, though she grew up primarily in southwest Michigan.  Because of this she considers both Chicago and Michigan “home”.  Colleen has two younger sisters, one of whom lives nearby in Chicago with her husband.  Her parents have been married for 40 years and still live in the family home in Michigan.  Colleen’s parents are in Chicago all the time so we see them often.

Colleen’s parents taught her to work hard and not give up easily.  Her family is adventurous, practical, grounded, fun, and full of love for each other.  It is because of her family that Colleen is the amazing and strong woman she is today.

Neil's side of the family

Meet Neil’s Family

Neil grew up in Davenport, Iowa with one older sister.  His parents have been married for 45 years and still live in the house where Neil was raised.  His sister and brother-in-law live in Davenport as well and have two sons.

Neil’s parents showed him the importance of commitment, hard work, thinking of others, and doing your fair share.  They can have fun almost anywhere.  They love entertaining with game nights and big bonfires in their backyard.  They also visit us in Chicago often.

Whenever we are visiting Davenport we spend time with Neil’s large extended family as well.  There is a big family party every year at Christmas time and every Memorial Day.  So many people come together for food and laughter.  It is a loud and loving group.

Our families are so excited for us to become parents. They cannot wait to share all of the love, fun, and traditions with our child.

Meet Sofia

We love having pets in our life.  We recently adopted Sofia the cat.  She is about a year old and the newest member of our family.  Sofia loves to play and eat but she loves people even more.  She has been so comfortable and friendly with visitors to our home. We think she’ll make a great companion for our child.

Our Life As Parents

We have been working toward parenthood for a little while now.  This has given us the chance to really figure out what we’re all about as a family.  We don’t have any strict expectations for what our family life will be like once our child arrives but we do know that we will continue to live by the following family principles:

  • we talk about feelings and how to deal with difficult things.
  • we act silly and laugh til we cry.
  • we ask questions, learn, and welcome new experiences.
  • we value education, hard work, and commitment.
  • we are open minded and not judgmental.
  • we make mistakes and forgive easily.
  • we value family relationships. Our extended families include many people who are not related to us by birth (through marriage, adoption, and blending of families) but to us they are just family.

holiday season at home

One Promises

Thank you for taking the time to learn about us.  We don’t pretend to know all that the future holds for us, or you, or for this very special child, but if you choose us as adoptive parents we can make the following promises to your baby:

-You will be so loved and cherished by us and our tremendous circle of family and friends

-You will have a good education and the opportunity to go to college

-You will have parents who are settled and stable in their careers and relationship

-You will learn compassion, value and respect for others

-You will learn to swim and ride a bike and have the opportunity to try sports and hobbies that interest you

-You will be read to everyday

-You will live in a diverse community and learn respect for those with different customs or cultures