We met almost ten years ago, in a small coffee shop in San Francisco. Dassance had just moved there from New York City and Reed had recently returned from two years living in Japan. Our meeting was a moment that you read about and roll your eyes - we really did know instantly we were meant to be together. Okay, it wasn't one instant, it took three days, but still... If you don't believe us when we say we're soulmates, how about this: we were both born on June 12th (differently years, at least), around 11:30pm, at home with a midwife. That's just weird, right?!
We got engaged after a year and a half of dating and had a crazy fun wedding in Santa Rosa to make it official. Our wedding featured piñatas, hula hoops, a popcorn machine, homebrew beer, and a belly dancer - just to name a few of the things we had going on! We wanted it to fit our personalities - a little quirky, not too serious but with a definite aesthetic and creative flair. Our key word was "whimsy". Afterwards we spent a two week honeymoon in Turkey, which fit all of our requirements for a great trip: steeped in history but also offered beaches, neither of us had been there before, and of course it was romantic!
Our married life since has been amazing. Together we enjoy cooking elaborate meals and dancing around the kitchen (often making Reed's mediterranean baked chicken and dancing to our wedding song "Birdhouse in Your Soul" by They Might be Giants), car camping in several states (salmon and veggie tin foil packets over the campfire is our specialty), making popcorn and watching movies, and playing board games. Even when we're just relaxing at home, we like to be in the same room as one another. Following our wedding we started trying to have a baby. After three years with no success we opened our hearts and minds to adoption.
Our decision to create our family through adoption was the best one we ever made. Because it brought us Odin, and because it will bring us a new little one who we will love and adore and who will make our little family complete.
Two years ago we relocated from the Bay Area to the Pacific Northwest. We were rapidly outgrowing our one bedroom rental apartment, not to mention the cost of living in San Francisco. We bought a sweet little bungalow house outside Portland, near the Columbia River Gorge in Washington State. We really have the best of both worlds - we are right next to some of the most beautiful nature in the country, and a 25 minute drive to all the excitement and culture that Portland has to offer.
Since becoming homeowners our lives have changed a lot. We now spend a lot of time around the property, fixing up the house to suit us perfectly and working outside. We have a little less than half an acre, and we have a small fruit orchard, a giant raspberry patch and flowers everywhere. That was all here when we moved in, we have also added a huge vegetable garden in the back yard. Reed built the entire thing, including raised beds and a hops trellis (pictured opposite) and tending the garden has become a real joy for all of us.
We also travel a fair amount. We have very close ties to Ithaca, NY (Dassance still has lots of family in the area) and the Northeast in general. We spend a couple of weeks every summer at our family's lake house on Cayuga Lake in Ithaca. We also often visit friends and family in New York City, Boston, Pittsburgh and the Berkshires. A little closer to home, we often travel north to Whidbey Island, WA, and south to Santa Rosa, CA, to visit some of our other parents. We have quite a large extended family, residing in at least fifteen states!
Dassance ("DASS-ence") was born in a log cabin that her dad built in the woods outside of Ithaca, NY. She was a drama dork in high school and went on to major in theatre in college. After school she moved to New York City where she worked in restaurants (as a waitress, a manager and everything in between), at a film school (helping teach acting and camera basics to kids) and professionally as a stage manager for Off-Broadway shows.
Dassance is creative and organized. She excels at planning and keeping track of details, and single-handedly planned our entire wedding. Currently she works remotely as an administrative manager at a nonprofit environmental organization, where she's worked for nine years. She works hard every day to help make the world a safe, healthy and beautiful place to live in and leave for our children. She cares about conserving resources, eating and living healthily, and taking care of herself, her family and the planet.
She is also an artist at heart and dabbles in piano and guitar, drawing and painting and creates beautiful stained glass works of art. She likes spending time at home, reading Agatha Christie novels and hanging out with her family.
Most importantly she is a loving and patient mom to Odin, and can't wait to open her heart and her life to a second child.
Reed was born in Spokane, WA and grew up in Northern California. He spent much of his childhood exploring tide pools and sand dunes with his brother, Aaron, getting dirty and wet. He studied English in college and then spent a few years in France and Japan teaching English as a second language before settling back in San Fransisco.
Reed is a learner and a teacher. His head is filled with so many crazy facts it's unreal. He's incredibly creative and talented. He can draw, play bass, make beautiful furniture, do kung fu, design games and develop web pages, write children's novels and garden. He has an insatiable thirst for knowledge and never wants to stop learning.
Reed works as a web developer for an event app company but his passion is in games. No matter the type - computer, board, video - he loves playing games and making games, analyzing games and designing games. He likes that they can be entertainment, but are also often powerful learning tools and a way to bring people together. With Odin going on four years old, Reed is excited to start introducing him to gaming as well.
When Odin joined the family, Reed became the father he always wanted to be and is excited to become a father of two.