October 18th, 2017
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Courtney and Mark

FUN FACTS!

  • Favorite Hobby

    Mark: Cycling

    Courtney: Gardening

  • Favorite Movie

    Mark: Star Wars

    Courtney: The English Patient

  • Favorite Food

    Mark: Chicken Tikka Masala

    Courtney: Chicken Sandwich

  • Favorite Animal

    Mark: Cocker Spaniel

    Courtney: Bunnies

  • Favorite TV Show

    Mark: Big Bang Theory

    Courtney: Homeland

  • Favorite Holiday

    Mark: Thanksgiving

    Courtney: Christmas

  • Favorite Vacation

    Mark: London and Paris

    Courtney: Daufuskie Island, SC

  • Favorite Band

    Mark: Guns N' Roses

    Courtney: Coldplay

We are Mark and Courtney from Pasadena, California!

To a very special woman: We cannot thank you enough for considering us as potential parents. We are humbled by your courage, strength, and selflessness to consider adoption, and we are so excited to embark on this adventure together with you. This moment is proof of the amazing love you have for your child and we are in awe of your huge heart.  As you learn more about us, we hope you’ll get a sense of the love that we have for each other and the central role of family in our lives. Above all, we hope you’re able to tell how excited we are to become parents! It will be the happiest day of our lives if you pick us to be part of this incredible journey. We appreciate you giving us a chance to show you who we are and what’s important to us.

About Us: Our love story starts on March 2010 during a Career Day at the elementary school where Courtney was a teacher. When Mark entered the classroom to speak to the kids about accounting, sparks immediately flew! Courtney was struck by Mark’s earnest approach to her students and Mark was drawn to Courtney’s positive energy. Our first date was set before he left the campus that day and love soon blossomed.  These six years have flown by! We have discovered shared passions (hiking, theater, weekend road trips, art and history); yearly adventures in Europe and the purchase of our dream home in Pasadena. We have a relationship built on respect, honesty, laughter and friendship, and it has been made so much stronger by our different-but compatible-personalities and points of view.  Since the beginning of our relationship, we have discussed how important it is for us to have a family. Before we decided to marry, we agreed that adoption would be an incredible route to pursue if we were not able to conceive naturally. We feel lucky to have found each other and understand what it takes to create and maintain a thriving marriage and family.

Our Wedding: Our wedding was truly magical. We were married on Daufuskie Island, South Carolina near a vacation home that has been in Courtney’s family for many years. It was important for us to marry in a place where we had ‘roots’ and could be surrounded by family. Daufuskie Island is a place where we intend to spend many summers with our child, exploring the tide pools, unspoiled beaches, woods and old-fashioned southern hospitality.

 

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Meet Mark

About Mark, by Courtney: Mark is one of the kindest people I know. He is the first person to help someone in need. He makes our family his first priority. Mark is a true renaissance man and a committed lifelong learner. He is an airplane enthusiast, travel connoisseur, amateur historian and current events junkie. Mark’s greatest trait is his compassionate heart. Whether he is mentoring students at my school, spending quality time with elderly relatives or just being my ‘sounding board’, he is my most supportive cheerleader and best friend. His kindness, patience and integrity are the key ingredients that will make Mark an incredible father.

Mark talks about growing up, and life today: I am a small town boy at heart. I was raised in a farming community in Central California called Tulare. I’m from a close family that includes two sisters (Rubi and Sonia) and my fraternal twin brother, John. My late father was my best friend, who was a war veteran and later opened up a grocery store in Tulare. My mother stayed home and took care of us children – a huge responsibility considering she had four kids in three years! Our house was always full of family, friends, music and fun. My siblings and I learned to play a musical instrument (my passion was the trumpet) and I ran competitive track all throughout my teen years.

I have always been a very goal-oriented person. Growing up, my dream was to attend the University of Southern California. I completed my degree at Cal Poly then took a year off to work-full time in order to save money and pay my own way through USC for graduate school. I am currently working as a finance executive at an international technology company in Calabasas, California. My career allows me to connect my love of math with a passion for travel. Thanks to my work, Courtney and I have visited locales around the globe and look forward to sharing those experiences with our future child.

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Meet Courtney

About Courtney, by Mark: People are drawn to Courtney’s friendly and outgoing personality. She has such a wide network of friends that includes people that she met in preschool all the way to folks that she met through her work. She has a talent for making everyone around her feel important because she takes the times to listen and share a laugh.  My heart melts when I see Courtney with kids. She speaks to them without being condescending, genuinely chuckles at their jokes and listens without judgment. She embraces her work with a passion because she genuinely wants to make life better for the kids at her school.  Courtney is the love of my life and my best friend. The adventures that we have together, from road trips across Europe to decorating our home, are much more fun because we are doing it together. The sound of Courtney’s laughter is music to my ears and I hear it often. Her quick wit and assertive spirit keep me on my toes and make every day with her special. Courtney is a person of great integrity. She is never afraid to say or do what is right or to speak for others…which is why she is such an amazing principal!

Courtney talks about who she is: I am a proud Midwesterner who has been in Los Angeles for twelve years. Born and raised in the suburbs of Columbus, Ohio, I’m a proud graduate of Ohio State (Go Bucks!) and came to California to teach at a struggling elementary school in South Central Los Angeles. I had only planned to stay for a year before going back ‘home’ to start my doctorate. However, I fell in love with my school, the great weather, and big city vibe. It was a hard to decision to stay as I am extremely close to my family. I was raised to have an independent spirit and my parents encouraged me to stay and realize my dreams. I worked my way up to principal and restructured my school to become one of the most improved elementary schools in the city. Teaching will always be my first love and I plan on returning to the classroom (after taking a full year off) when I become a mother in order to maximize time with our child. Taking care of children, either as an educator or parent, is the central focus of my life.

 

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Our Family

Courtney’s Family: Though I’m originally from Columbus, my entire family has ‘migrated’ to Chicago in recent years. My sister Kathy moved to the city after college and my brother Scott was transferred there for a job a few years ago. After my magical nephew Jimmy (who is my Godson) was born five years ago, my parents decided to move to Chicago, too. They wanted to retire in a city where they could stay active and spend more time with Jimmy. Once Mark and I become parents, they plan on relocating to California! They are ALL about their grandchildren.  We are a very close family. My parents fly out for visits every couple of months and we travel to Chicago for Christmas and for long weekends. We meet at our family retreat in South Carolina every summer for beach time, sailing and eating. My siblings are my best friends and we talk constantly. I’m even officiating my brother’s wedding this winter. Everyone is excited to have a new baby in our family!

Mark’s Family: Although my siblings and I were born and raised in California’s Central Valley, our favorite place was a family ranch in New Mexico. A love of land and outdoors is a common thread between all of us. We regularly go camping, love animals (especially dogs and horses) and enjoy the peace and quiet that only nature can provide. My father was the greatest man that I have ever known. Though his passing was difficult, the lessons he taught me remain the guiding forces in my life. We see my mother every couple of weeks and my sisters Rubi and Sonia (who live in Sacramento) every few months. My brother and his family live close by and we spend lots of time together. It will be great for our future child to grow up with their cousins the way I did!

 

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Our Home and Promises

Our Home and Community: We bought our first home last year in Pasadena, California, one of the loveliest suburbs of Los Angeles. We fell in love with our house because of its vintage charm (it was built in 1941), huge yard (big enough for a swing set and lots of sports) and tree-lined street. We also enjoy the ability to walk to restaurants, coffee houses, parks and our church.  Our neighborhood is in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains, so it’s like a slice of the country just outside the city…we even have deer and hawks! Pasadena has a vibrant cultural scene with lots of art galleries, historic estates, libraries and theaters. We intend to provide our child with the best educational options according to their individual needs and interests, and our city has some of the finest private schools in the country within ten minutes of our house.

Our Promise’s to a Special Woman, You! We promise to love your child unconditionally. We promise to empower your child with the confidence to speak up for themselves and advocate for their beliefs. We promise to be your child’s biggest advocates and cheerleaders. We promise to instill in your child an appreciation for exploring the globe, experiencing the arts, enjoying great food, and learning about diverse cultures. We promise to make sure that your child knows their adoption story and shares the deep admiration and respect that we have for you. We promise to provide your child with every possible advantage.

Thank you so much! We are so grateful that you took the time to get to know us. Whatever choice you make will be the right one for you and your baby. Of course, we would be honored if you chose us! We wish you peace, courage, and love, now and always.

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