We are an active couple who live with our dog Moose in Salt Lake City, Utah. We met in 2009 while we were working at an outdoor gear shop in Vermont. On our first date, we clicked right away over the best pizza dinner with a brownie sundae dessert. We fell in love with each other while hiking, kayaking and skiing. We married in 2013 and are best friends.
Holly works as a Physician Assistant in a busy Emergency Department. She works just 12 days per month, which leaves quite a bit of time at home. In her downtime, she can be found reading a book, running, Nordic skiing or having coffee with a friend. Aaron works in the outdoor industry at a Monday through Friday job that requires minimal travel. When he is not working, you can find him working on his (and Holly’s) mountain bike, watching Virginia Tech football or reading the news.
Life isn’t all about work, though. In fact, we both love our jobs for the amount of time they allow us away from work, both at home and outside. We still enjoy mountain biking, hiking and downhill skiing together and have easy access to these activities where we live. We seek both small and big adventures - an overnight camping trip in the nearby mountains, biking in southern Utah, and traveling as far as Nepal to backpack and volunteer with healthcare teams. But the simple gifts of life are often experienced and enjoyed in the quieter moments - like nightly walks around the neighborhood with our dog, after dinner treats at a local ice cream shop, impromptu dinners with friends, snuggling on the sofa to watch a show, or sitting down to breakfast and a cup of coffee together before work.
Years ago, we knew we wanted children, but this proved challenging. Through our infertility struggles, we realized it is far more important for us to be parents than parents of a biological child. Boy or girl, we welcome a child through adoption with open arms into our fun and laughter-filled home. We have so much love to offer to our future child, as do our extended families. We are committed with our whole heart for our whole lives to raising and loving our child unconditionally. We dream of nurturing a baby into a happy healthy child and then a well-balanced adult. We look forward to story times, holidays, teaching them to ski and mountain bike as well as impressing upon them the importance of kindness. We can’t wait to involve a child in the activities we love, but also help them to develop their own interests. Our child will always know their adoption story and the love of their first family and our family. We hope to incorporate some of our child’s birth family traditions and culture into our family to preserve connections. While open adoption is our goal and we are open to phone calls, visits, texts and emails, we are also open to any situation (semi-open or closed) that you feel that is best for you and your child.
We live in Salt Lake City, Utah in a cozy bungalow built in the 1920s that has four bedrooms and two bathrooms. Our home has plenty of room for a child to grow and a bedroom waiting right next to ours. Our house doesn’t feel like a home without a dog, and our four-legged friend, Moose, certainly brings happiness (and a little bit of mischief) to our lives.We love spending time in our living room listening to music or watching a TV show - 30 Rock and Parks and Recreation are our favorites. Once in a while we find ourselves dancing to our favorite songs. Our fenced-in backyard is perfect for grilling dinner and playing fetch with the dog.
We love our neighborhood and most evenings you can find us walking the dog and stopping to chat with neighbors. We frequently have impromptu dinners and dog play dates with our friends in the neighborhood. We are surrounded by a mixture of young families, retirees and everyone in between. Nearby, there are restaurants and ice cream shops to walk and bike to. There is a playground a few blocks away and a larger park with more swings, a splashpad and an aviary nearby. The zoo is a short drive from our home and offers memberships that will provide lots of fun family time and education.
What Aaron Says about Holly:
Holly is inclusive, thoughtful, kind and humble. I fell in love with her freckles, her laugh and her ability to balance having a good time with achieving her goals. She is the engine of our household, making sure our home is warm and inviting (i.e. adequate supply of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream and chocolate chip cookies) and keeping in touch with our friends and family. She can make anything fun, from a rainy weekend hunkered down in our house to even building Ikea furniture. Her compassion and empathy for me, Moose, our families and her patients in the Emergency Department where she works as a Physician Assistant make me proud to be her husband. I feel lucky to have married my best friend; she is the best part of my life. Her selfless and loving nature will make her a wonderful mom.
I grew up in Massachusetts and my parents still live there - though we are hoping they will move to Utah in the future! They are thrilled to add a second grandchild to the family through adoption. My sister, who is 5 years older, lives in Maryland with her husband and has a little girl that was the first grandchild in the family. Geographic distance doesn’t keep us from one another - I talk to my parents nearly every day, even if it’s a quick call on my way to or from work or a funny text. We also make time to visit each other a few times a year and those visits are always fun – lots of cooking as a family, trips to see Christmas lights, or days spent skiing. My Godmother, who I affectionately refer to as my “fairy Godmother,” has been a constant in my life since birth and we often celebrate holidays and visit with her.
I was supported, encouraged and loved by my parents and adults in my life growing up. They were always present at softball games, gymnastics or cross country meets and spelling bees and willing to sit down and help me with a tough homework assignment. I dream of supporting a child in this same way. As a family we skied together, did scavenger hunts on holidays for our holiday treats and spent time at the beach with both sets of grandparents. Thanksgiving staples were roast chicken and chocolate pie. At Christmas, we always cut down our Christmas tree. Aaron and I have continued these traditions while also forging our own traditions like skiing on our birthdays. We can’t wait to continue these traditions, build new ones, and incorporate some of our child’s birth family traditions and culture into our family.
What Holly Says about Aaron:
Aaron is a selfless, loyal and fiercely funny person, my best friend and favorite adventure partner. I fell in love with his southern charm and slight accent and never looked back. He is always looking out for those he loves; my coworkers are jealous of the breakfast sandwiches and milkshakes he is known to deliver to work. He once rode his bike 26 miles alongside me as I ran a marathon to support me and moved across the country to be with me while I attended graduate school. I look forward to sharing the many rewards and joys of parenthood as well as the trying moments and challenges. There is no one I would rather experience these emotions and adventure with than Aaron. I can’t wait to see him fall in love with our child.
I grew up in a house with parents who treasured their children. My older sister, younger brother and I were best friends growing up and I am still close with them. My siblings and I were encouraged to play sports (soccer was my favorite), act in plays, practice instruments, sing, and work hard in school. I am proud to tell friends about my father’s role in the Army Reserve because his work ethic provided opportunities for his children and service to others. My mom was a Midwife for decades and cherished the opportunity to help expectant mothers bring children into the world and her commitment to community service is inspirational. My family is excited to add another family member through adoption.
As a parent I will give my child many of the opportunities that I was lucky enough to experience growing up - camping and sailing with my dad and summer road trips with my mom. My parents instilled a sense of adventure in me and I hope to do the same for a child one day. Throughout my childhood I knew that I was loved, and I could depend on my parents. I know that being a parent will be challenging at times, but I believe my upbringing can help guide the journey.