Hello! We are Erica and Josh from Southern California!
Thank you for taking the time to consider us as adoptive parents for your child. We acknowledge and appreciate the courage and love you demonstrate in the decisions you are making for your child. It is our hope that we can provide you a genuine look and feel of the life and love we look forward to sharing with your child and the family your child could become a part of. We are excited to become parents. The struggles we have faced in our journey towards parenthood have allowed us to appreciate the wonderful gift that is adoption. We promise to love unconditionally, foster your child’s curiosities, instill strong morals and values, listen attentively, respond patiently, hug tightly and be ever-present in each and every moment.
Our story begins as a couple of 12 year-olds trying to navigate the same middle school hallways in central Kansas. Josh was the shy kid with a knack for math and a love of athletics. Erica was the social butterfly, friend of everyone and a cheerleader at some of Josh’s games. While we were friends and in many of the same classes between 1991 to 1997, Josh never quite had the courage to let Erica know she was the most beautiful girl he had ever seen. As fate would have it, we became “Facebook Friends” in 2009, although we still debate over who requested whom. In the summer of 2010, Erica made a simple Facebook post that changed our lives forever. “I would love to go watch the Chiefs play the Chargers on Monday Night Football if anyone is interested.”
Erica was now living in Oklahoma and Josh in Chicago; however, Josh had season tickets to the Kansas City Chiefs. Josh convinced Erica to join him for the home opener of the 2010 season, and we found what we had been missing. We began a long-distance relationship where we texted non-stop and visited each other every few weekends. It wasn’t long before Erica moved to Chicago and Josh began to plot an epic proposal. In March of 2012, Josh and Erica flew to California for a “getaway” which ended up being his surprise proposal with friends from near and far serenading Erica. Six months later we hosted a destination wedding on a beach in Mexico with many good friends and family. Shortly after getting married in 2012, we moved from Chicago to Southern California. Even though we grew up in the Midwest, we’ve always been drawn to the beach and now call Orange County home.
I grew up in the country where imagination and creativity were the keys to having the best adventures. My older brother and I could often be found fishing or swimming in our pond, climbing trees or playing with the various animals we raised. Throughout my twenties and into my thirties, I worked as a manager in retail clothing stores. Once married, I left my retail career and its fluctuating hours behind so we could focus on our goals of adopting, and I became a nanny to two wonderful children. Sadly, I had to step away from my position to tackle a medical issue that sealed the deal on us ever having our own children. In 2013, I was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Following treatment, my doctors were amazed by my recovery and have let us know it’s time to get back to our life goals and become parents. Currently, I am the CEO (chief executive officer) of our household and enjoying every minute of it! I make sure our house is running smoothly – from repairs to cleaning and organizing. In my spare time, I enjoy playing with our dogs and working on various crafting projects. I am looking forward to sharing my sense of adventure, imagination and creativity with our future children. In me, they will have their ultimate “soccer mom”, nature guide or general supportive cheerleader in their chosen interest. I am devoted to not just family first, but family always.
Erica Through Josh’s Eyes: I’ve known how special Erica is for 26 years. Even as a young kid, I noticed that she went out of her way to be nice to everyone. She volunteered in special needs classes and spent time helping out at the local nursing home. Being a caregiver is in Erica’s DNA. She has those mom-instincts that only the best mothers possess. Every child I’ve seen (from newborn to teenager) naturally gravitates to Erica. These children lean on Erica for guidance, and she instills all the values that initially attracted me to her: love, kindness, patience and virtue. Since Erica has overcome a brain tumor, she can easily relate to children facing difficult medical battles. I routinely see her inspiring kids with her positive attitude, grace and humor. Erica made my life complete the day she said “Yes” to me. I’m currently so proud to call Erica my wife, but I can’t wait to call Erica “Mom”.
I grew up in a small Kansas town. My home was surrounded by many tall trees, and I would spend most afternoons playing outside. I grew up with an older brother that instilled a love of all sports. While I love everything about Kansas, I knew from an early age that I wanted to go away for college. I saw pictures of Pepperdine University when I was an eighth-grader, and I told my parents that’s where I was going to school. I studied broadcasting, and Yoo-hoo Chocolate Drink sponsored my campus TV and radio shows. Upon graduation, Yoo-hoo asked me to be their National Spokesperson, and I traveled the country promoting the chocolatey goodness. After my days with Yoo-hoo, I went back to school to get my MBA in Marketing. I’ve worked in the event marketing industry for about 15 years, and I love it! I work in a family-friendly office that encourages children to come visit daily, and I’m excited for Erica to bring our future child to the office frequently. In my spare time, I enjoy being active. Erica and I are always trying to find a new hike in Orange County. If your child takes an interest in athletics, I’ll be very excited to be a coach, mentor and the biggest fan in the stands. If he or she takes an interest in the arts or music, I’ll be the first to take lessons so that we can learn about his or her passion together.
Josh Through Erica’s Eyes: From the moment Josh walked into my life, I knew we were meant to be. He and I are so like-minded. He is compassionate, focused and generous. I love watching him play and read to our nieces and nephews. His interactions are so full of love and sheer enjoyment. There was this one time that we took Lillie and Riley to a children’s museum and I left the area to use the restroom. When I returned, I couldn’t find the three of them. After hearing giggles, I found Josh and the kids inside a maze of cardboard boxes that were decorated to look like a castle. Hearing the three laugh and play just melts my heart. Josh will go out of his way to get a laugh and will cuddle when one of the kids are hurt. Instinctively, he knows what to do.
OUR FAMILY & FRIENDS
Our extended families still live in Kansas about 45 minutes from each other. It definitely makes visiting family easy since they are all in one central location! We try to make it back to Kansas for Thanksgiving, Christmas and at least one Kansas City Chiefs game each year. Both of our parents have been married for nearly 45 years and have been incredible role models. We each have one older brother that is two years older than us. Erica’s brother, Aaron, is married to Sarah and they have three children: Matthew, Riley and Lillie. Josh’s brother, Justin, is married to Donna and they have two children: Addison and Clark. Between the five nieces and nephews, we have plenty of spoiling to do when we visit Kansas!
We have rescued two pups named Moxie and Asher. They certainly keep us busy! Moxie is a Papillon mix, and Asher is a Terrier mix. Asher is a recent addition to our family, and he is seven pounds of love. They both adore our nieces and nephews so I know they will love our future child and fill his or her life with tons of puppy kisses. We enjoy taking our dogs for hikes on trails near our home and down to the beach for some time in the surf and sand!
OUR HOME & CLOSING THOUGHTS
About a year ago, we bought our first home. Knowing that we were going to adopt, local schools were the most important factor. We live in a beautiful part of Orange County, California, with incredible top-rated schools within two miles of our house. We’re lucky enough to have a private yard to play in, along with many nearby parks and trails. Our neighborhood is full of families with young children, and it’s the perfect place to grow up. Within 20 minutes, we can be at Disneyland or the beach, and mountains are only an hour away. In many ways, the friendly neighbors and nearby parks remind us both of our incredible upbringing in Kansas. We know our future child will love it here. Once again, we can’t thank you enough for taking the time to consider us as adoptive parents for your child. We realize this must be a very difficult decision to make for your child. No matter what you choose, we’re honored that you took the time to learn more about us. We truly can’t wait to become parents. If that dream is fulfilled by becoming your child’s parents, please know that we will cherish every moment with your child. We promise to love unconditionally, foster your child’s curiosities, instill strong morals and values, listen attentively, respond patiently, hug tightly and be ever-present in each and every moment.