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Joe & Jenny
Love, laughter, adventure, and fun-these are the words that describe our family! Adoption is such a beautiful thing and we are grateful for the chance to share how excited we are to welcome a new little one into our family. We are sending love and support to you as you go through this journey. We haven't met you yet but we carry you in our hearts every day.
Our Professional Lives
Right after we were married, Joe commissioned into the Air Force as an officer. We moved all over the country for various lengths of time. We expanded our cultural diversity and friend base at each location. The military and local community provided us with lifelong friends, which we still go and visit regularly. Joe served his country and was deployed all over the world.
Jenny became an Air Traffic Controller and her job is what enabled us to move back home to Colorado. Jenny's fellow air traffic controllers are like family and Joe and Lyla often travel with Jenny to attend air traffic controller events and classes.
After moving back to Colorado and the birth of Lyla our priority became family. Joe serves part-time in the Air National Guard, which provides us more family home time and flexibility with deployments. Joe works from home as a successful realtor and financial advisor, which allows us to be flexible with days off, maximize family time, attend school and special events, and travel during the off-season.
Our typical day starts with cuddles in the "big family bed" and then taking care of feeding the animals. Jenny makes one of her legendary breakfasts; if it's a special occasion it will be homemade cinnamon rolls or strawberry shortcake pancakes.
We like to start the day with a fun activity. Lyla likes to play surfing girl in the pool or collect flowers and cool rocks on a hike with the pups. When it's time to head outside and get work done, we all pitch in and grab our work gloves and get things done as a family. We trim trees and rake up pine cones, while Lyla helps collect fire wood and put them in piles.
In the afternoon we usually do crafts using watercolor paints, making necklaces, or making a playdough puppy dog. We often take trips into Denver where we visit the elephants at the zoo; hang out with the dinosaurs at the history museum or attend a family festival with a farmer's market and fun activities. We enjoy cooking dinner together and reflecting on our fun day.
We like to end the day either reading books, playing a game or watching a Disney movie. In the summer we sometimes head outside to look for shooting stars.
Our Family Traditions
Fall is one of our favorite times of year. Every October we head back home to our Nebraska family and spend a few days at Valla's pumpkin patch. Valla's is the Disneyland of pumpkin patches; with a massive treehouse playground, haunted houses for all ages, automated animal band shows, pig-tucky derby races and so much more. We spend hours wandering in the apple orchard picking and tasting various antique apple varieties in the golden light of the setting sun. It takes us almost as long to find the perfect pumpkin for each of us; Lyla always wants a tiny pumpkin. We watch fun shows and participate in fun activities until we are totally worn out. We end the day a giant turkey leg and some homemade apple pie.
Just after Thanksgiving we set out to find the perfect Christmas tree. The whole family loads up into our truck and sets off into the forest. We hike around, with a mug of cocoa, enjoying the outdoors in the cold winter wonderland. Even if we find a tree early we continue to look for hours to ensure we picked the perfect tree. Joe uses as a handsaw to cut down the tree and we help each other carry it back to the truck. On our way home, we stop at our local fire station where they have a holiday crafts sale and homemade chili. We also get to visit Santa which is a perfect start to the holiday season.
Our House and Neighborhood
Our home is where our heart is. We live on a mountain acreage where Lyla and the dogs can run and play. We have a small barn in our backyard where we have a calm and gentle horse, Charm and a super cute pony, Smokey. Our home has numerous floor-to-ceiling windows that fill our house with light, life and the feeling that we are outdoors in nature, we often see deer grazing in the yard, including one Lyla named "Cookie." We even have a swim spa outside where we swim, workout, relax and play year-round. Lyla constantly has crafts or painting on the kitchen table and there are books spread throughout the house for fun reading time.
Our neighborhood has hiking trails that we regularly adventure on, taking the whole family including the dogs. The elementary school is only a few miles away and they have lots of community events. We especially enjoy Halloween where the families have a large trunk-or-treat party with games for the kids like pumpkin races and a spooky scavenger hunt.
We live close to Denver and visit often, there is always something fun to do! Every January we attend the Stock Show and Rodeo where we can enjoy being a horsey family. Last year Lyla did a stick horse race and won a huge ribbon!
We also enjoy all the parks and recreation that Colorado has to offer and go outside and adventure all year long from biking in the summer to sledding in the winter.
Our Extended Families
Everyone is excited and supportive of our adoption plan! Our family and friends cannot wait to be part of the child's life and look forward to a bundle of joy to spoil with lots of love and fun activities.
We often travel with Grandpa Jack (Jenny's Dad). Our last trip together was to Steamboat Springs, Colorado where Jenny competed in a scenic triathlon. We hiked, ate yummy food, relaxed and learned the history of an Olympic Ski Town. Every spring we go Breckenridge Colorado, where we have a family condo, and we go skiing, sledding and play in the snow. Grandpa Jack is pretty handy and is known to come and spend the whole day working on fun ranch projects like fixing fences or trimming trees.
Nana and Grandpa Henry (Joe's Parents) enjoy sharing their love of Disneyland and local pastimes, including going to Colorado State University Football games and running races. Lyla's last race with her grandparents she dressed up as Minnie Mouse and got to run with a whole bunch of other kids in costume!
The whole family comes together to enjoy big celebrations in the backyard during summer, holiday traditions, or attend fun community events. A child will have many opportunities to be surrounded by love and attention from our parents.
From Us to You
We married young, just over 14 years ago, right before Joe commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Air Force. The USAF allowed us to travel, live and experience several different places. Military life expanded our cultural and racial diversity and we learned to love and support people from all walks of life. Deployments made us stronger not only as a couple but as individuals, we learned to always treasure family time and live life to the fullest. After several years of unsuccessful fertility treatments, we chose to take care of ourselves and take control of our future. We focused all of our energy into doing an Ironman triathlon to help us heal from learning we couldn't have a biological child. We did it together and will forever be stronger as a couple.
Just one month after completing the Ironman, Jenny miraculously became pregnant with Lyla. Recently we found out that Jenny could no longer have children. We considered adoption several times before we got pregnant with Lyla and now we are excited to be expanding our family through adoption. Lyla has brought so much joy into our life and we can't describe how grateful we are to have her. She is our "billion-dollar baby" since the fertility doctor said we would be more likely to win the lottery then have a biological child. We don't take a single second for granted and soak in every amazing moment with her, from her adorable brown curls to the first time she met Mickey Mouse.
Being parents has given us greater joy than we could have ever imagined. We cannot express how thrilled we are to expand our family and share our adventures with another child. Your child will give us the opportunity to pour love into another child, cherish all the little moment's and grow our family with another fun personality and spirit. Your child will have an amazing big sister and a fun and loving family to go on a lifetime of adventures. Lyla is excited that our next child will be adopted, she constantly says that she wants a baby brother and a baby sister!
We want you to know that you are loved. Your baby is loved. We want to give you strength and courage on this incredibly emotional journey. We can't image how overwhelming and difficult this is for you, however we promise to give your child a safe, stable, nurturing, and compassionate home.
We hope that if you are willing, you will be part of your child's life forever. We are open and support you in the role that you choose. You are significant to us and always will be. We are happy to send email updates with pictures and stories as well as letters and keepsakes that mark milestones in your child's life. We believe that a child's connection to his or her birth family is important to give them a sense of who they are, where they came from, and that they are loved. We hope that together, we can help our child truly thrive and grow up to be strong, confident, and happy.
We will always be open and honest with your child about their adoption and will emphasize that you as the birthmother made an important and courageous decision out of love. We believe that having a stable loving family is the foundation for a happy and successful life. Our unconditional love and support enables our family to have strength and confidence so that we can pursue our passions, be ambitious, and tackle life head-on.
The love you have for this child is a true reflection of your amazing strength and compassion and we appreciate your courage to consider this beautiful act of adoption. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for taking the time to get to know our family. We wish you the very best with your next steps in this journey.
Joe & Jenny