Our story began fourteen years ago when we met at a friend’s BBQ. After several good conversations, we realized that we loved the same things—being outdoors, exploring new places and foods, and traveling. Five years later, we were married a block away from where we got engaged.
We have always believed that we’ll have the children we’re meant to have whether that’s through biology or adoption. In 2013, we were lucky enough to have our son, Luke. Our dream is to grow our family even more through adoption.
Luke is an energetic five-year old, who cannot wait to be a big brother. He’s a funny, independent kid, who loves to tell jokes, play with Legos, cuddle with his dogs, and build things with his dad. He’s begun making his own plans for a brother or sister, whom he loving calls “Dory Pumpkin.” When asked what he wants to do with his younger sibling, he loudly cheers, “Everything!”
We are proud of the family we’ve created, which is centered on love, togetherness, community, and faith. We can’t wait to bring in a new little one into our family to teach them about these values. We know the joy finding something you love can bring, and therefore continuously explore as a family, experiencing new places, foods, and activities. We want our children to find whatever it may be that they love, whether that’s karate, knitting, drawing, basketball, or cooking. We’ll be there cheering them on, wearing ugly sweaters and catching their foul balls.
We live in a historic garden community that is located outside of Washington D.C. This quant town allows us to easily walk or ride our bikes to the library, a local swimming pool, the movie theater, and restaurants. Walks are frequently interrupted with play time at one of the many playgrounds throughout our town. We enjoy spending time on the easily accessed hiking trails in town or at nearby parks, and particularly love walking around the lake a few blocks from our house. Being outside Washington D.C., we frequently hop into the city, taking advantage of the various restaurants, museums, events, and city attractions.
We live in a three-bedroom home at the end of a quiet cul-de-sac. We have a large, fenced-in backyard with mature trees that provides lots of shade for playing on the large playset or swinging in our hammock. The large garden and deck we completes our backyard oasis, where we love to play games, read books, enjoy family meals, and simply take in nature.
A woman with a kind, caring heart is the short answer to describing Dana. She is the rock of our family, with her strength in lifting us being immeasurable and her loving care being endless. I’m blessed to have her as my wife and to see her as a mother.
Dana has a big heart, putting her family first in all decisions. She has selflessly changed directions in her career in international relations to have more time at home with Luke. She is also an exceptional aunt to our niece, Presley, and waits anxiously for summer vacations where we all get together in norther Michigan where she grew up.
Spending lots of her childhood in Northern Michigan, Dana has a love for the water. She now regularly seeks out new places to go kayaking on the local rivers and the Chesapeake bay.
Dana has a strong passion for literature. She can often be found curled up reading a book. She’s an avid writer as well, having short stories published, an almost-completed novel in the works, and is a regular participant in her weekly writing group. She loves sharing this passion with Luke, surrounding him with books so that he, too, can learn the joy of reading and storytelling.
A passionate cook, Dana also loves collecting cookbooks. Many an evening I can find her thumbing through stacks of them that have made their way to our bedroom. She is always looking for a new meal to cook for the family. It’s safe to say that we don’t have the same thing to eat for dinner every week!
I always know where Tom is in any room because I can always hear his loud, effortless laugh. Sometimes I don’t even know what he’s laughing at, but there he is, laughing away playing with our son, Luke, or making jokes with friends. It’s fair to say that this is what drew me to him when we met at a Labor Day party in 2004. At first, this smiling, energetic guy from Wyoming was confusing to me—a skeptical Midwesterner—but he quickly became the person I wanted to be around all the time.
Always energized by an activity, Tom loves to be outside hiking with our dogs, biking, or camping. But nothing cuts these activities short more than if his beloved Clemson football team is playing on TV! Tom has also recently gotten into woodworking (and scouring the internet for new tools!) and has already made some lovely things for our home, including book shelves and a super hero playhouse!
Tom is also a thoughtful and creative hard-worker. As a Human Factors Engineer, Tom uses these skills to solve complex problems for government and industry. However, these abilities also come in handy building birdhouses, little libraries, and Lego sets with our son, Luke, and any other children we’re lucky to have.