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Tommy and Karla

Dear Birthmother, 

Hi!  We are Tommy and Karla.  Although we haven’t had the privilege of meeting you yet, know that you are in our thoughts and prayers daily.  While we cannot imagine what you are going through, we admire your bravery and selflessness in choosing adoption. We cannot wait to meet you face-to-face as we walk through this journey together.  Thank you for taking a moment to get to know a little about us through our profile.

We know the path you have chosen for your child is not an easy one.  The decisions you are about to make are difficult, and we can’t begin to fathom how you must feel. Our choice to adopt your child is one we haven’t taken lightly.  We have spent much time in prayer and know that God will guide all of us in these decisions. Please understand we are ready and willing to provide your child with unconditional love, and we will do our best to follow the example set forth for us by our Heavenly Father.  This Bible verse is our goal as parents, as well as within our daily lives:  “Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children and walk in love as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us.” Ephesians 5:1 

We look forward to showering your child with love.  We promise to encourage her, support her, laugh with her and be our be best for her every day of her life and ours.  We look forward to the honor of meeting you. 

We sincerely hope our letter gives you a glimpse into who we are and the type of parents we will be.  Thanks for taking time to view our profile and our pictures. We can’t wait to meet you.

Tommy and Karla

ABOUT US

Now a little about us:  We have been married for 10 years.  Tommy served in the Marine Corps and now works for the Federal Government.  Karla worked in government for 10 years but recently changed careers and is now a 5th grade teacher.  She loves it.  We just recently bought our home in anticipation of adding to our family.  We are active and love the outdoors. We like to go on hikes and long walks by the lake near our house.  We are also active in our church.  We serve in the nursery on Sunday mornings, and Tommy works with the Awana program teaching 5-year-olds on Wednesday nights.  He is the leader of the Men’s Ministry and is an Adult Bible Fellowship leader. Karla volunteers with Vacation Bible School and participates in the worship team.  Our church is like our family.  We attend a very diverse church with people from all walks of life, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.

We met while working together many years ago and immediately developed a friendship.  Our friendship continued to grow, and then suddenly, Tommy was called to active duty for the Marine Corps and moved to the DC/Virginia area.   We maintained our friendship through phone calls and emails.  Eventually Karla was offered a job and moved to the DC area.  At that point we reconnected and continued our friendship.  The friendship grew and we eventually fell in love.  We decided to elope and married at a bed and breakfast in an historic area in Virginia.  Our wedding day was like a fairy tale.  While we invited no “real” guests to our wedding, the guests of the inn asked if we minded if they watched the wedding ceremony on the lawn in the gazebo.  So, our guests were complete strangers!  After we said our “I do’s” the crowd on the lawn clapped and cheered!  It was a fantastic day!

Tommy talks about Karla:  Karla is truly one of a kind.  She prides herself on being a person that continues to grow and develop and never allows herself to stagnate.  She has many varied interests and pursues each of them with zeal.  As we mentioned before, she moved to the DC area many years ago because she accepted a position with the FBI.  She enjoyed the work and the challenge.  That position eventually led her to work with the Secret Service.  Both positions were challenging and allowed her to have many exciting experiences.  While working in government, she got the chance to meet two U.S. presidents and countless other important members of the Congress and Senate.  She eventually found herself desiring more in her career, and a few years ago, she made a significant job change.  She applied and accepted a job as a 5th grade language arts teacher and has never regretted her decision.  Her new role allowed her time to explore other interests.  She got a chance to volunteer teach in India and was fortunate to work in a girls’ home while there.   Additionally, she later became a certified yoga teacher, and due to a lifelong interest in real estate, she obtained a real estate license. She enjoys singing and tried out for a musical in our local community theater.  She played the role of “Irene” in the musical Hello, Dolly!  Her new pursuits include volunteering to teach English to refugees who have recently entered the U.S.  She is currently learning about gardening and has identified a spot in our yard that will become our “suburban garden.”  She also has plans at some point to write a children’s book and has already begun working on her outline.  As I said, her interests are broad, and I admire her for her enthusiasm and dedication to pursuing her goals and passions.

Not only is she fearless in her pursuits, but she is also one of the most sincere, honest and deeply caring people I know. She loves people and never meets a stranger.  She takes a genuine interest in people and has an ability to encourage others to follow their dreams and plans.  She is loving and patient and exhibits those characteristics daily when she comes home and tells me about “her kiddos,” as she calls them, at her school.  She loves getting to know the students on a personal level and never stops working with them and encouraging them to do their best.  She loves being able to share her love of literature and reading with her students and tells them reading is the key that opens their eyes to the world.

She is the love of my life and my best friend in the world.  I am so blessed to have her as a wife and I thank God every day for her.

Karla talks about Tommy:  I cannot tell you how much I truly admire and respect my husband.  He is my rock.  He mentioned all my interests and pursuits previously, but if it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t have been able to do any of those things.  He is always in my corner and encourages me to go after my goals and desires with gusto.  He enlisted in the Marine Corps at the age of 17  and eventually graduated college and was able to finish his career as an Officer.  He is Marine Corps through and through. He is a patriot and loves this county with all his heart.  He is the picture of a Marine Officer.  He is strong, brave and always puts others needs ahead of his own. After the Marine Corps, he decided to continue serving his country as a civilian employee of the Marine Corps.  He loves the young Marines who are just getting started in their careers and offers them the support and encouragement they need to get their important jobs done.  His job took him all over the world to parts of the Middle East, Korea, Japan and Africa.  He loved the travel and those experiences opened his eyes to the world around him.  It allowed him a glimpse into other people and cultures and further deepened his desire to serve others no matter their background, culture or beliefs.  Tommy is not as extroverted as I am, but he still loves meeting people.  Everything he does in his spare time is about others. He is very driven to serve others, and most of his extra time is spent doing just that.  Of course, we both love children but he is like a child magnet! Several of our friends at church call him “the child whisperer.”  Kids just love him.  As mentioned before he works with the five-year-olds on Wednesday nights, and they like to play chase.  So, on Sunday mornings after the service, a group of children usually run up to him to entice him to chase them!  Of course, he always does!  I love that about him.  It’s so much fun to watch him engage with the kids.  I admit it makes me very proud that he is always willing to take time with them.

OUR HOME/COMMUNITY 

In August of this year we moved from the townhouse we have lived in for the duration of our marriage into a two-story single-family home with a full finished basement.  We purchased the home in anticipation of our adoption plans.  We knew we wanted to grow our family, and we needed room to do that.  The house is a five-bedroom home on a dead-end street.  While we are part of a very large neighborhood (approximately 19,000 people) our little street is like a community in and of itself.  There are lots of children around and we know all the neighbors.  We have neighborhood block parties frequently where all the families come out into the street, eat, chat, and get to know each other.  We have met great friends living here during this short time.  The family that lives closest to us is expecting and due in January.  We have chatted about how great it will be for our children to play together.  We have a large fenced backyard that is shaded and perfect for playing. The school district in our area is fantastic, as I can attest to personally, because I work within the district.   The school in the neighborhood is literally three minutes from the house and has a great reputation.

The amenities in our neighborhood are unique and are what makes it a highly sought after place to live.  There is a large lake accessible only to residents with a beach and swim area.  The community has events at the lake throughout the year with things like fireworks shows and teen beach parties, and during the Christmas season, Santa rides through the neighborhood streets in a firetruck and greets children along the path.

Within the neighborhood there is also a country club.  We are members and the club offers a nice restaurant, golf course, tennis courts and a swimming pool (my favorite part).

We love living here.  We have the best of both worlds.  Our house is in a great, quiet neighborhood with friendly people.  We live near our church and our close friends.  There is also a state park right outside our neighborhood complete with campgrounds, biking and hiking trails.  Additionally, we are about 20 minutes from Washington, DC.  We like that detail because it gives us the opportunity to experience the cultural events that take place in the city.  We feel it is important for a child to be well rounded.  We want to raise your child in a quiet area with lots of room to play, but we also want to provide opportunities to expand their horizons through the arts.  It is just a hop, skip and jump to drive into the city to visit the Smithsonian museums, to see shows at the Kennedy Center and to learn about the history and government of our country.

FAMILY ACTIVITES/TRADITIONS 

We are very active people and love being outdoors.  We love to take long walks down to the lake and hang out on the beach.  We also have been known to drop everything on a Friday afternoon in the spring, pack up the car and drive two miles to the state park, and stay the night.  It is wonderful living so close to the park…if we forget anything it takes minutes to go home to quickly pick up whatever we may have forgotten.  We take full advantage of living near DC and have attended concerts and shows.  We recently saw Matilda the Musical at the Kennedy Center because the book that the show is based upon is by one of Karla’s favorite children’s book authors. We like to visit the museums and take in the history of Virginia, DC, and sometimes we even head north to Maryland!  We love to hike in Shenandoah Mountains and have plans to hike all the waterfalls on the trail.  So far, we have hiked only one…so that means we have at least 10 more to go! We also like to go to North Carolina to the beach.

Tommy comes from a HUGE family.  He has 11 brothers and sisters who all have children, and some of their children have children.  They live out of state, but we try to see them as often as we can.  We always laugh, because the first time Karla met them, Tommy told her the family was having a small BBQ at his brother’s home with just Tommy’s siblings.  By the time everyone arrived, there must have been at least 50 people there!

Tommy also has a grown son and daughter from a previous marriage who live out of state as well.  We see Tommy’s daughter often, and she recently made the trip to Virginia and stayed for a few days.  She is absolutely thrilled at being a big sister and has vowed to make sure she is the one that “will spoil her baby sister and teach her things she needs to know.”  Tommy’s son and he are very close and have marathon phone conversations generally about football!  They laugh and talk for hours, and he is also very supportive of our decision to add to the family.

Karla comes from a smaller family.  She has only one brother and sister-in-law and three adorable nephews.  They live out of state as well but we keep in touch often.  Karla is very close with her mother and father (Mimi and Poppy) and talks with them almost daily on the phone.

OUR ADOPTION JOURNEY

As we mentioned previously Tommy has children from his first marriage.  When we first married, we had plans to start a family together.  However, that did not work out exactly as planned.  There were some fertility issues we needed to address first.  While working toward that, it was discovered that Tommy had cancer.  So, of course, we shifted gears and started taking the necessary steps to deal with the cancer.  Thankfully, we successfully treated the cancer and returned to our plans to have a child.  Unfortunately, we soon found, the cancer left us unable to conceive.  Some would see that as tragic but we see it as a true blessing.  We always knew, on some level, God would eventually lead us down the path to adoption.  We always wanted to adopt children, actually lots of children, and with the events that took place in our lives, we feel God clarified our path for us.

A little more about us….

ADOPTIVE FATHER ADOPTIVE MOTHER
Occupation Logistics Officer USMC civilian 5th grade teacher
Education Bachelor’s Degree Master’s Degree
Favorite Hobby Anything Outdoors/Reading Anything Outdoors/Reading
Favorite Food Fried Chicken Lasagna
Favorite Dessert Apple Pie Anything CHOCOLATE!
Favorite Holiday Christmas/Easter Christmas/Easter
Favorite Movie The Godfather and anything about the Marine Corps Casino (strange, I know)
Favorite TV Show Law and Order Law and Order
Favorite Music Artist/Group Too many favorites to list.  We like all genres of music. Too many favorites to list.  We like all genres of music.
Favorite Vacation Spot Beach Beach

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