April 20th, 2018
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Nick, Mel and Roman

About Us

First and foremost, we are adoring parents to a kind, smart, silly, and handsome four-year-old named Roman. In our happy household we value education and learning, respect, compassion, curiosity and creativity. We believe children thrive with positive discipline. We also believe that the best way to instill these values is to model them ourselves, so we work every day to become better parents and role models.

Here’s how we met: Ten years ago, Nick was working in Tanzania and Melissa was working for an architecture firm that had projects in the Serengeti. We met through a mutual friend from Southern Tanzania who was opening a gallery of African antiquities. After a few months of dating, we moved in together in East Africa, where we traveled the region and promised each other that we would never stop exploring the world. A few years later, we returned to California to start our family. We got married in a grove of redwood trees surrounded by our family and friends.

Both of us grew up with siblings. Our own brothers and sisters have been a lifelong source of friendship. With them, we’ve shared endless joy, learned to resolve differences, and counted on each other in moments of celebration and heartache. We trust that Roman and your child will cherish a similar bond. Roman is thrilled to become a big brother and to share all that he’s learned about his favorite subjects, which are music, animals, sports, and space.

 

 

About Our Neighborhood

We live in the San Francisco Bay Area in a neighborhood of dear friends, young families, and some of the best schools in the country. We live high in the hills overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge, next to a nature preserve with hiking trails and a world-famous science center. It’s the kind of neighborhood where kids are always in the street playing some game that they just made up, everyone’s door is open for an impromptu visit, and a dozen families show up to every birthday party. It’s exactly the kind of neighborhood in which we’d hoped to raise our children.

About Nick

Nick is an amazing partner. When I first met him the thing that impressed me most was his easy going way with people. He could always find a common topic and make anyone feel comfortable. Nick is very athletic. He’s an avid rock climber, mountaineer, hiker and marathon runner. He is confident, intelligent and strong. He’s also a bookworm. He graduated from the University of California, Berkeley. Since then, his career has been in public service where his compassion and desire for helping communities and creating opportunities for children in need flourishes. He’s led projects out of the Obama White House and helped build programs that serve tens of thousands of students throughout the country. As a father, Nick is a great role model and nurturer. He is patient and fun and has a natural way of teaching and engaging, so that our son and nieces are thrilled to be around him. He’s constantly learning new things. Currently, he’s learning how to build a cabin, as well as teaching himself to play our piano. He is my biggest supporter and champion. I always go to him for advice. I can depend on him to encourage me and inspire me. I love how close-knit his family is. I feel lucky to have such wonderful in-laws. I’m proud of him and our family.

 

 

About Melissa

Melissa was born and raised in Hawaii, where her parents sold seashells by the seashore (literally). Her mom is from the Philippines and her dad is from Holland. She grew up with three languages in her home, English, Ilocano, and Dutch. Melissa moved to Northern California for college, where she studied photography and art. She’s been the lead singer of a band and sold out a solo show of her own paintings. These days, she’s an executive at a creative studio and advertising agency. But the job she loves most is being a mom. Our wonderful, bright, exceptionally loving son was born four years ago and brings us immense joy. Melissa strives to create a magical, happy, enchanting setting for his upbringing, with a foundation of unconditional love and encouragement. It’s important to her to be an excellent role model for our children. She sets this example by finding happiness in the small things, showing gratitude, working hard, being creative, and constantly exploring.  I fell in love with Melissa because of her kindness, adventurous spirit, and because she laughs at my jokes. That she loved me back has been the greatest blessing of my life.

 

About Roman

Roman is a delightful, inquisitive, silly and compassionate boy. He loves his two older cousins. It’s a joy to watch them play together. Roman’s current obsession is the deep sea, especially giant squid and whales. He loves outer space and can name all the planets and most of their moons. He’s got a crew of best pals at his preschool and they can always be found cracking each other up and rolling around in the sandbox. When we do the laundry, we find his pockets filled with sand. Living in nature means that Roman can enjoy seeing wild turkeys, deer, foxes, owls, and hawks. We often spend weekends in Yosemite — his favorite place — or travel along the coast to Big Sur or Point Reyes to watch whales. He loves camping and making s’mores by the campfire. At night, we love cooking and using ingredients from local farms. Music is a constant in our lives. There is always a soundtrack playing in our house. We’re all learning to play the piano, so it’s been fun hearing everyone’s unique compositions. Like us, Roman loves to travel. Together, we’ve traveled throughout Africa, Asia, Europe, Central America, and the United States.

 

Our Favorite Things

Mel loves to cook, garden, and paint. Her favorite movies are The Royal Tenenbaums and Her. She listens to Feist and The Shins. She thinks the best food in the world is Adobo Chicken, the way her mom cooks it. Nick loves hiking, traveling to distant places, and reading about people who inspire him. His favorite books are Long Walk to Freedom and The Fire Next Time. His favorite food is lumpia, the way Mel’s mom cooks it. Roman loves to dance, collect rocks, watch shooting stars, ride the steam train at Tilden Park, build towers at the Lawrence Hall of Science, knock those towers down, and — best of all — play with his friends and cousins. Hugo loves to nap at our feet. His favorite food is whatever he catches in the field outside our house. He loves to chase squirrels, though they always get away.

 

 

Final Thoughts and Gratitude

We believe that the decision to place your child in a loving, adoptive home is an extraordinary act of selflessness. We can’t imagine all that went into this difficult choice, but we know that it was a courageous, life-affirming one. Our decision to adopt has also been a journey. We’ve talked for years about adoption. As a young couple, our interest and openness to adoption brought us closer together. As we prepare our home for another child — painting the nursery, opening a college savings account, and dusting off the stroller — we’re filled with anticipation, joy, and an awesome sense of responsibility. We promise to provide a safe and nurturing home for your child. We promise to instill discipline, so that your child can not only dream big, but realize those dreams. Most of all, we promise to love your child unconditionally. With all our heart, thank you for considering us.