October 20th, 2017
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Dean and Sydney

Greetings and Salutations,

“When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real……once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.” —The Velveteen Rabbit, Margery Williams.

The above quote from The Velveteen Rabbit perfectly describes the journey we have been sharing for 16 years and the adventure we look forward to experiencing with your child. While we can’t understand the ups and downs of the roller coaster you have ridden while coming to this decision, we appreciate your taking the time to consider the possibility of choosing us. We are Dean and Sydney, a counselor and a doctor, who can’t wait to provide your child with a life of love and laughter, stability and adventure.

We are eager to meet with you and get to know you!

 

From Chat Room to Real Time

The 90’s were ending. A new millennium was beginning.   We were both on AOL in a chat room when our paths crossed. After chatting we decided to meet in real time and hit it off right away. Within a few months we were getting to know each other’s families, including Sydney’s children from his previous marriage.

We continue to enjoy being together—often finishing each other’s thoughts. Family remains integral to our daily life together. From weekly dinners to Saint’s games to trips to Disney World, they are never far. We love traveling. We spend many weekends at our condo in the French Quarter of New Orleans—America’s most magical city. We also enjoy attending the opera, going to the movies, having season tickets for the New Orleans Saints and seeing Broadway shows.

When we are home, we enjoy rocking on the front porch and watching Simah, our granddaughter, splashing in the sprinkler and waving to neighbors as they pass.

We are a fun loving couple who is grateful for the children, including Dean’s nieces, in our lives. Seeing their smile and the sense of wonder in the eyes brightens every day we spend together. Throughout the years we grow closer to each other and stronger as a family because as Josephine Baker said, “The things we truly love stay with us always, locked in our hearts as long as life remains.”

 

Sydney the Amazing

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My husband, the doctor, never ceases to amaze me. Every day he gets up and heads to the office to help heal the sick—yet, I have never known him to take a day off due to illness. He keeps ticking along like the Energizer Bunny and being an excellent provider. He’s also a generous man, providing inspiration for me when I wanted to go to graduate school and later when I decided to open my own Counseling Center.

He adopted his first child and then had four more. Now is super excited about adopting again. After all, kids love this man. They love listening to his stories, his jokes, and his clever riddles. Olivia, our 5 year old niece, said it best after we returned from a recent weekend spent on Pensacola Beach in Florida. She told her mom, “Uncle Sydney is the best storyteller in the world.”

Saving lives and loving children are just the beginning. He also plays the violin with the University of Louisiana at Lafayette Orchestra and the Lafayette Community Strings Orchestra. But my favorite thing—the thing that showed me just how special he is—he listens. When a person needs to be heard, he takes the time to hear them.

 

DEAN—MY HUSBAND and MY BEST FRIEND

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Dean is a fun person and can be very childlike in his outlook on life. Children adore him! My kids from the day they met him, have accepted him as a stepdad, an advisor and a good friend who will listen to them and offer them insight into their own lives. His sister’s children, two brilliant little girls, can’t wait to visit with Uncle Dean as for them he both is an adult to respect and a playmate to have fun with. He takes them on amusement rides at Disney World—to movies and brings both of our families together for NFL football games, celebrations and lots of events throughout the year.

To me he is a source of strength and support and is so cheerful and energetic and upbeat. He has so much love to give, so much empathy. For these alone I know he will be a great dad and he is soooo looking forward to it.

At the time I met Dean, I was single and living on my own and no intention of getting into a relationship. Then I met Dean. He had me From “Hi I’m Dean”. He was getting his Masters in Psychology when we met, and once he finished he set up his own counseling center next to my medical clinic. He’s a great counselor and people are very open and comfortable with him as he has the talent and knowledge it takes to direct them along the path to their own self-realization of higher level of coping with challenges in their lives.

 

Bon Temps (Good times!)

We are always exploring. We have cruised from Alaska to Acapulco to Aruba to Newfoundland. Walking on a glacier was pretty darn cool.

Dean and Isla’s annual Saints-Falcons game.

Isla is Dean’s 8 year old niece. She lives just outside Atlanta. She is a die hard “Who Dat” and can’t stand them “dirty birds. We have gone every year to the game in Atlanta since she was two years old. Every now and then we include other people.

Sydney plays the violin for two orchestras.

Dean has been collecting Zippo lighters from Hard Rock Cafés for over twenty years. Each one from a different location.

We have season tickets to the New Orleans Saints and enjoy organizing family trips to away games sometimes.

We have season tickets to the New Orleans Opera.

We enjoy taking kids to the zoo or the beach or to play mini-golf in City Park.

 

A Tale of Two Homes

We have two homes. Our primary house in Lafayette and our Condo in the French Quarter of New Orleans

Our Lafayette Home

  • Our primary home. We are usually here during the week.
  • Our front porch is the perfect for rocking in our rocking chairs and watching the birds and the squirrels chase each other through the oaks, elms, magnolia, willow, and crepe myrtle trees.
  • We have a Mickey Mouse room that just needs a crib.

 

Our New Orleans Condo

  • This is our secondary home- a weekend getaway.
  • Located in the highly desirable residential section of the French Quarter.
  • We have a private courtyard with a Mickey Mouse planter (used to be a fountain). I love sitting here and listing to the music coming from the steamships on the river.
  • Close to the Audubon Zoo, Aquarium of the Americas, Insectarium, City Putt Miniature Golf, Storyland, and Carousel Gardens in City Park.

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Keeping people healthy—mentally and physically.

We are both self-employed, which provides tons of flexibility in scheduling and fits well with our plans to be with our child. Dean works as a counselor and has already begun to shift his appointments later in the day. Sydney is a family physician and will be home every evening. Another great advantage is that we can bring our child to work when we need to. Even still, Dean plans to take time away from work to care for our child initially.

Our employees are all mothers who love children and have brought their kids to work many times when they were sick or couldn’t get a baby sitter. Everybody chips in.

 

Family and then some

Over the years our families have melding into one big bunch with a lot of unique pieces. Some highlights:

Family is important. We meet with Sydney’s grown children every week for dinner.

Dean travels to Atlanta each year to take his 8 year old niece to the Saints-Falcons game. They have done this every year since she was 2 years old.

Our 3 year old granddaughter is a real ham. She loves having stories read to her and is always after chewing gum.

Dean’s mom is super excited about having another grandchild and is already offering to babysit. She is even planning a baby shower. They always spend mother’s day or mom’s birthday together. Usually for a weekend. And usually in New Orleans. Just mom and son.

Our granddaughter and niece were “fairy girls” at our recent wedding. Our other niece was our “niece of honor.” The three are best friends.   [side note….I want to include our legal wedding somewhere. It was a blast. After 15 years together we were finally able to get legally married. After the ceremony, we had a second line parade through the streets of the French quarter in route to the reception. We had a police escort and even shut down Canal Street and Bourbon Street temporarily—I have some good pictures]

Kat, who read at our wedding and has been a loyal and empathic friend since Dean was in college. She possess a magical charm and dignified air about her.

All in all. Sydney has 5 kids from his first marriage and one brother living in Canada. One grown grandson and one 3 year old granddaughter. Dean has 3 sisters. And 3 brothers. 4 nieces. His mom, his step dad. And his dad. Most of the family lives in Lafayette. The rest live in Pensacola, Florida and Atlanta, GA. We get together quite often.

His football buddy niece, Isla, also featured us in a school project about commitment last year when she highlighted our relationship from commitment ceremony to being married in San Francisco in 2004 (only to have it annulled) to finally obtaining a legal marriage in 2015. She did so using a poster board and presenting it to her class.

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What it comes down to…our pledge to you.

At the end of the day, we know you want the best for you child. We are not perfect, but a life with us will be a life lived well—filled with adventure and stability. We have been blessed with many things and want to bring your child into the life we have come to know so well. We will teach acceptance and respect for all people.

As your child becomes ours. We will love and cherish him and instill in him a strong work ethic and the value of a dollar. We will encourage him to explore his interests. We imagine he will learn to play an instrument. Perhaps the violin, like Sydney. But, also he will enjoy going to football games and traveling.

Oh the places we will go. Disney World and Disney Land to name two. But also to Georgia and Florida to visit cousins and grandparents, aunts and uncles. He will see the inside of more than one football stadium as we follow the Saints around with friends and family.   HE will get his sea legs early about a cruise ship.

We will answer his questions and read him lots of stories.

And you will know as much as you like. We will keep you in the loop if you desire. That way, you will sleep well, knowing you made the best choice when you choose to grace us with the biggest gift one person can give to another. And we will be eternally grateful.

 

We appreciate you!

We appreciate you for being you and for taking the time to consider and choose us to parent your child as ours. There are two families in life. The ones we are born into and the one we choose. Being a male couple, we can only choose, we can’t make. That is why adoption is such a beautiful thing. Thank you

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