We’ve been together for over 14 years now. Seth grew up in rural Illinois, and Chris grew up in Connecticut. We met back in 2005 when we were both nerdy students at Iowa State University. Our shared interests in animals and video games brought us together, and in 2010 we got married on campus. After moving around a bit for temporary work, we were lucky to both land stable, long-term jobs together in upstate New York in 2012. Chris is a biology professor at a public college near Syracuse, and Seth is a veterinarian at a small animal clinic (for cats and dogs). In 2017 we adopted our first son, and now we are all ready to welcome another child to our family.
We live in a comfortable home in a quiet neighborhood. There are other families with kids nearby, and we have a nice roomy back yard for games and running around. In the winter, our house is usually covered in snow, but in the summer we like to grill on our back patio and spend time outside in the garden. We also live just down the street from a large park, where we often take the dog for walks or play at the playground with our son. The local public library is within walking distance, too, and we go there frequently to look at books and play in the kids' area. There's also coffee shops and an ice cream place that we like to walk to for dessert in the summer.
We have a dog, Daphne, and a cat, Zephyr. We also have several pet turtles, some of which Chris has had for about twenty years now! A couple years ago, one of them laid eggs and we hatched two baby turtles. Our son enjoys interacting with all of the animals and will be eager to teach his new sibling all about them.
In the summer we spend a lot of time gardening and tending to our potted fig trees. When we’re not outside, we’re usually inside cooking (our favorite: pizza). Chris’s dad has worked as a baker for about 40 years, so baking is a big family tradition for us, and we’re excited to pass it on to another generation.
One of the first things I noticed about Seth was how important his friends and family are to him. On our first "date", we watched a movie with a couple of his friends. I think he wanted to make sure I would get along with them. (Luckily, they approved, and today they're my friends too.) Even though we now live far away from most of our family and our friends from school, he makes a point to stay in touch. This is especially true for his siblings and parents; he always sends pictures of our son to our families and loves getting pictures of our nieces and nephews in return.
Seth has a way of putting people at ease, and he's always patient and kind. This is probably why he's so successful at his job as a veterinarian. He probably wouldn't admit it, but it's not uncommon for him to get thank-you letters from clients at work thanking him for taking such good care of their dogs and cats. He gets a lot of phone calls from friends and family asking for pet advice, too, and he always makes time to help them.
Another thing I appreciate is that Seth really keeps me balanced. He makes sure I don't work too hard, and is really thoughtful when I need it most. If I'm stressed at work, he'll get out a jigsaw puzzle and a glass of wine so we can relax for an evening; once he even planned a surprise weekend getaway for us to Washington DC. I love watching him practice his many hobbies, too. On any given evening or weekend, he might spend some time playing the piano for our son, gardening outside, or knitting a scarf or hat for a friend. (His dream is to open up his own yarn shop as a hobby when he finally retires.) He's an excellent self-taught cook too; his homemade bread is the best and is usually gone within a few hours of coming out of the oven.
Seth's a terrific dad to our son. He loves to play games with Holden and make him laugh. Sometimes when I get home from work, I open the door and find the two of them in the kitchen blasting "Baby Shark" and other kids songs and dancing. Or I'll find them sitting on the floor in the living room next to a stack of picture books that Holden wants to read over and over ("more book! more book!"). Of course, being a parent isn't all fun and games, and Seth is so patient even when things aren't easy. He keeps his cool even if it means getting up in the middle of the night to snuggle a crying toddler, or spending the whole evening in the waiting room at urgent care so that our son can see a doctor for a cough. Seth always puts his family first, and I know he'll do the same for our next kid (or kids).
When I first met Chris, we were both still in school. I learned early on that he is patient and rational. Our busy schedules left little time for dating, but we made time for each other when we could. We appreciated our time together, whether it was studying together at the coffee shop or watching each other play video games. Perhaps most importantly, my dog took an instant liking to him, and within a few months she seemed to like Chris better than me.
Chris’s brain is always working. He is quite dedicated to whatever projects he takes on. The most obvious example of this is his scientific research; one day he decided to look closely at some pill bugs out in the yard. Four years later he had a full research project (with international collaborators) about pill bug genetics. He also recently decided to teach himself French, and is almost fluent after only 2 years.
Chris is a selfless loving person. I often come home from a long day at work to a tidy house and a home cooked meal, usually after Chris has had his own full day of work. He can often be found throwing the tennis ball for the dog (her greatest joy!) or playing "chase" with our son even if he is exhausted himself.
Chris can be shy and awkward sometimes, but put a kid in front of him and he’s suddenly a natural. Between dealing with his students and putting up with me, he has learned patience. Seeing him with our son has shown me that he can draw on all of his love, patience, and knowledge to help raise an incredible child. He has even faced his fear of bodily fluids and mastered the art of diaper changing.
Chris has so much love to share. He has been an amazing and devoted father, and he will continue to be to any child that joins our family.