Family is very important to us. We were both raised with a strong sense of family closeness.
We mention going to the lake as things we do during the summer. Cobb Lake is very special to us. Kyle’s grandparents on both sides had cottages on the lake right next to each other. That is where Kyle’s parents met and started dating.
When Kyle’s grandparents passed, Kyle’s dad bought the cottage and has since turned it into their permanent home. Kyle’s Uncle has the home next door, and one day we hope to buy Kyle’s mother’s family cottage and get it back in the family.
All this to say there are multi-generational memories that are made during summers at the lake. Family events, 4th of July fireworks, and bonfires late into the night all take place with three generations in attendance.
It is a special place that we use as a haven for relaxation and family bonding.
|Gender:||Any Gender, including an Ambiguous or Transitioning Gender Child|
|Ethnicities:||Any Race and Ethnicity|
|Age:||Newborn to 3 Years Old|
|Total of:||1 to 3 Children|
|We Live In:||East Grand Rapids|
|Kids Already:||One Child Now|
|Child Care:||Licensed Child Care Home,|
We met almost twelve years ago through mutual friends in Chicago. Dating was difficult at first, because Kyle’s mother was going through chemo for breast cancer, but Kellyn was patient enough through that tough time to wait.
We liked each other because of mutual tastes and interests, but grew to love each other by seeing the compassion each had for family and community. We moved in after dating for a year.
A few years into the relationship, we both felt the need to return home to Michigan. Kyle to be close to his growing nieces, and Kellyn to be close to his aging great aunts. Family is very important to us.
Soon after we moved, Jabori came to live with us. We knew Jabori though a mentorship program in Chicago, and when his mother was unable to care for him, she chose us.
Jabori was with us for six and a half years, until his mother was recently able to take him back. Jabori made us overnight parents, and he will always be part of the family and a part of our lives.
In April of 2018, Westley came into the picture. He is a funny, care-free almost five year old. It is amazing to see him thriving and growing over the two and a half years that he has been in our care. He loves school and can’t wait to go back in the fall. We are hoping his adoption to be finalized in soon.
During the warm months, Westley and the neighborhood kids are always playing in the shared yard. In normal times, there are two big block parties for everyone. We spend time at neighbors’ homes sharing meals and having bonfires.
Lately free-time is spent enjoying our outdoor space and staying cool in the portable pool or running through the sprinkler. We ride bikes or walk to our local small town district and get ice cream and walk around Reed’s lake.
We spend quite a bit of time at the family cottage, where we swim, boat, fish, tube, and ski on Cobb Lake.
In the colder months, we spend a lot of time indoors by a fire and enjoy movies together, with the occasionally card/board game or puzzle.
We try once a year to take a big vacation. Sometimes that is Disney, other times that is a trip to see distant relatives. We’ve been getting in the habit of a February retreat to Florida to escape the cold.
One of our favorite things to do is take cruises; hopefully one day it will be safe to sail again.
We have very close friends both near and far. We have a strong support system nearby made up of family members and friends. We continue to grow our friendship base and community through other parents in East Grand Rapids.
We have lots of close friends that live in other cities that pre-Covid we’d go and visit; lately we have had many enjoyable face-time/zoom dates and game nights.
Family continues to be our closest form of relationship. We are very close with both Kyle and Kellyn’s family. We spend summers at the lake with Kyle’s family.
Many weekends are spent having play-dates or Sunday lunch with Kellyn’s family. On Kyle’s side, the cousins are older, but very into playing with and taking care of Westley. On Kellyn’s side, the cousins fit right in line with Hannah being exactly one year older than Westley (to the day), Henry being six months younger than Westley, and Grant being one in January.
We live in a 3 bedroom, 2 bath house in East Grand Rapids with nice size backyard. When we bought our house, we couldn’t have asked for a better neighborhood.
The kids all play outside most days. The adults get together for barbecues during the summer and campfires in the fall and winter. There isn’t a thing we couldn’t ask our neighbors for and we probably have.
East Grand Rapids is a great place for families. We have tons of parks for the kids to play, a private pool in our
neighborhood, and a great school system.
If we do move, it would be within EGR. Although, we love our neighbors so much that we would strongly consider an addition to the house before moving. In fact this summer we are adding a deck to make the back yard even better.
We identify as Christian, but are not strict on our religious schedule. We tend to make it to church around holidays with family. We do follow the teachings of Jesus: Kindness, doing well unto others, helping the unfortunate.
Kindness and helping others play a larger role in our life than an organized religion. We know we are not perfect and actively strive to be better for others.
We both believe education is important for success and personal growth and development. It is important to use education to figure out strengths and weaknesses and to conquer both. Self-growth of knowledge can be limitless.
That being said, not every learning style fits for each person. We both strive for knowledge and growth, but found a four year university not the best fit for our path. We will encourage our children to learn with open heart and mind and assist them in finding the path of learning that best fits them.
We believe that children learn right and wrong by example and experience. A child must have clear discipline that is agreed upon by both parents. Discipline is a great way to educate a young mind, to help them grow into healthy adults.
Discipline should be a learning experience, not a shaming or hurtful (emotionally, physically, or mentally) experience. It is an opportunity to not just teach right and wrong, but stronger values like compassion, empathy, hard work, and dedication. We currently use 1, 2, 3 Magic and it is working great. Any birth parent should know and follow the steps of 1, 2, 3 Magic so we can all work together to positively discipline the child.
I am lucky enough to work in a job I love. I help my customers achieve their goals through multi-platform advertising. I work for a company that offers great perks like concert and amusement park tickets and a flexable home/life balance.
My company allows 6 weeks paternity leave with placement of a child, which I plan to fully take. Currently I am working full-time from home so being home wouldn’t change.
Typically we have an in-home daycare that is three blocks from our house. We love Sara and she is ready to take in a new baby. Depending on the state of Coronavirus though, our backup would be to re-arrange our hours so we both could get work done while also caring for a child. We are lucky to have careers that allow flexibility.
I own my own business, Recover Massage. I love that I can help my clients work through their physical pain and achieve their goals; whether that be relaxation or running a marathon.
Upon placement, I would block my schedule off for four weeks; seeing patients that I couldn’t move here and there. I am lucky that I can make my own hours, but also need to work to stay in business. Kellyn and I would get through those first few weeks together to create a schedule.
We have an in-home daycare that is three blocks from our house. We love Sara and she is ready to take in a new baby, but depending on the state of Coronavirus I would adjust my hours to take shifts with Kellyn, so he may also get some work done from home once his paternity leave is done.
Dear Mom, What an emotional experience you must be going through. First choosing to make an adoption plan, then having to choose a family for your baby.
Our hearts, home, and extended families are ready to welcome a little one. If you choose us, we will be there to support you through the entire process. After all, you will be the mother of our baby, something we can’t do without you. We want you to know that we welcome any level of involvement in the process.
We are quite familiar with bringing a child with an existing family into our lives. Westley is waiting for a little sibling and is excited to show them the ropes.
He has been with us two and a half years and regularly sees his mother. She is an integral part of our family.
We have grown even closer with her over Covid, as visits have gone down, but we video chat with her almost everyday. Westley has a great pediatrician, and I would make sure your little one had the best care by Dr. Davidson as well.
We wish you peace of mind through this process. Whether you choose us or another one of the great families at Greater Hopes, please know that what you are doing will bring joy to many people who will give unconditional love to your baby.