Dear Expectant Mother:
Hello Letter
“See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!”
1 John 3:1

The Lord provided this verse to us from 1 John at the beginning of our decision to build our family through adoption, and we hope it encourages you as you make your plans. We belong to the family of God amidst a very broken and hurting world. No matter what we endure, God’s love never fails us. We love the word “lavished” in the verse. It makes us think about the abundance of God’s love for you, baby, and us. He doesn’t place limits on his love. It is real and can truly bring relief to grieved and weary hearts. We speak often with our son Isaac about how God cares for his children like a Shepherd cares for his sheep. One children’s book we read rephrases Psalm 23 to illustrate God’s shepherding love: “He feeds me, he guides me, he looks after me. He makes me strong and brave.” We find comfort too when reading this book to Isaac that our Father in Heaven is watching over us.

We can’t imagine the pain you must be experiencing. Please know that we are praying for you daily. We pray for your well-being and safety. We pray that you meet someone you can trust to support you, as you make so many important decisions for yourself and baby. We pray you can find peace during difficult nights, and strength throughout the day.

It would be a privilege to meet you, but we also respect your wishes otherwise and understand. We often wonder about the things you like and what is important to you. For example, if you are going to cook, or someone offered to cook for you, what is it going to be? What makes you fall out laughing? What types of music are you into? Sports fan or can’t be bothered?

We also wonder what would be important to you regarding an adoption plan. What would you want your baby to know about you? Is there anything specifically you would like us to say or do to communicate your love?

We are already your biggest fans! Thank you for inviting us into your story by taking time to look at our family. We also created a book that shares more information and pictures should you like to view it. Our life isn’t perfect, but because of our Savior, we have an abundance of joy. We love our family, friends, and community immensely. If you do choose to make an adoption plan, it is our hope that confidence in your decision to do so will grow as you read words of support in family profiles through New Beginnings.

Blessings to you!
Love,
Laura, Lane & Isaac

ABOUT US
Lane and I (Laura) first met in Alaska in 2008, as we worked as tour guides during the summer months of college. We were friends the first summer, dated the next summer, and then married September of 2010. It is hard for us to believe that we are coming up on ten years of marriage this September! We often say only the Lord’s sovereignty could orchestrate us meeting; being we are both from small towns on opposite ends of the country. As a couple, we center our marriage and home on the love and grace of our Savior, Jesus. We love to spend time together debriefing the day in the kitchen as we make dinner, or on our daily walks as a family. Communication is important to us, and happens naturally everyday because we genuinely love to spend time together. Our shared responsibilities have grown over the years, but we protect our schedule in making time for each other. We are both passionate about caring for our community; specifically so in the education/non-profit sector, and enjoy serving in these spaces together. The last ten years have brought us many adventures, but the best has been becoming parents together through the gift of adoption.

From Laura about Lane:
Lane is still the fun loving, kind hearted, and driven guy I fell in love with in Alaska. It has blessed me to see the Lord place Lane in jobs where he can use and develop his gifts to love others. Currently, Lane is the Associate Head of School at an urban Christian school in our city that is passionate about nurturing children into who God created them to be. We are thrilled our children will also get to attend this school too, and drive to work with Daddy! Lane jumped into fatherhood right away, and is a really good Daddy. He helped take night time shifts when Isaac was a newborn- feeding him and cuddling together. Now he teaches Isaac how to make good choices and tells him about God’s love. He is a strong leader, dependable, trustworthy, and keeps us entertained with his fun sense of humor.

Lane: Becoming a Dad has been one of the greatest joys of my life! My love for Isaac was instantaneous and it has only grown with each day. Whether we are playing trains, reading books, learning how to ride his big boy bike, or snuggling together, I could not be more grateful to God for the privilege it is to be Isaac’s Dad. He is strong, kind, extremely smart, and caring toward others. He isn’t perfect but we have that in common so I take those “discipleship opportunities” to point him to the one who is perfect: Jesus. While I love making sweet memories, being silly, and laughing uncontrollably together, I know that my greatest emphasis must be on teaching him about God’s love for him. We recently moved to a new house with an incredible backyard. While it affords us a great area to have fun, I recognize the opportunities it will give us as a family to grow closer to each other and to God. I enjoy taking care of our house and doing yard work on the weekends. I also personally enjoy supporting local nonprofits in their efforts around our city, and friends who have started small businesses. I help by building them a website or generating social media content. Working out is a good outlet for me and I look forward to getting to the gym a couple times a week. After Isaac goes to bed, I spend my downtime reading and hanging out with Laura. The books I choose are often biographies that help inform me about men in Black History whom I can learn from and share about with Isaac as he grows. I also love to travel with Laura and Isaac. We look forward to our annual trip to the beach with my side of the family, and flying to the Pacific Northwest to visit Laura’s family during the summer and at Christmas.

From Lane about Laura:
Laura is one of the best things that ever happened to me. I am tremendously grateful to the Lord for allowing me the privilege to call her my wife and best friend. She is extremely gifted in everything she applies herself. Laura serves as the Admissions Director & Support Educator for a Early Learning Center preschool at an inner nonprofit in our city. We love this community that the Lord has graciously gifted to us and Laura really enjoys meeting with families to get them connected to the preschool. Laura is a natural mama and balances her many responsibilities with a servant minded heart. One of the most enjoyable things for me these last 3 years is to see how much Laura delights in being Isaac’s mom. She loves our son so well and can’t wait for God to grow our family again through adoption. She is tender, kind, strong, silly, and capable in all the ways a good mama should be. She is and will continue to be a fantastic mama to our children.

Laura:
Oh how I love being a mama! Holding Isaac for the first time, I felt all at once a great love, joy, gratefulness, responsibility, and the desire to know him flood my heart. I realized these intense feelings were the beginning of motherhood, and now I understand through the faithful actions of each day what it means to love a child deeply and more than myself. Each day brings new experiences together and times of growth for both of us. I love reading with Isaac, watching his eyes light up and finding out at each developmental stage what makes him giggle, and teaching him to discover new things about God’s creation. Personally, I enjoy connecting with people- setting up playdates and seeing new or old friends. Our week is pretty structured and we spend a lot of energy as a family helping others (the nature of our jobs), so we typically spend our downtime with family or small groups of friends doing simple things together. My favorite way to re-charge is with Lane and Isaac on a day trip or relaxing at home in the backyard together. I love to catch up with a friend and meet up after our kids go to bed, read books that challenge my thinking, bake with Isaac, listen to music as I cook, go for a walk and listen to a podcast, or ride bicycles as a family. I grew up on an island in the Pacific Northwest (where the shared photos were taken), so any beach is my happy place. I am a trained teacher and currently work part-time as the Admission Director for a non-profit preschool in our city. Isaac attends this preschool, and we enjoy commuting together the three mornings a week we are on campus.

OUR HOME/COMMUNITY
We moved to our home in September 2019. Our previous home was about a 30 minute drive to the city we do life in. This new home is an answered prayer and changed our overall quality of life for the better. Now we are about a five minute drive from church, work, friends, school, and our favorite places to shop, eat out, and get groceries. Lane can come home from work to eat lunch. The neighborhood is safe and is a sweet community of both young families and seniors who have lived here for years. The neighborhood is multi-ethnic, which is important to us. There is a park two streets down from our house, so we can ride bikes or walk over to play. One thing that feels unique to our neighborhood is all the trees. We have sturdy, tall pines that make beautiful canopies over the streets we enjoy on our walks. We have two pups- a golden retriever and collie, so we are out often. Isaac either rides his bike or chills in the stroller.

Backyard
A few things we are really enjoying about our home is having a shaded backyard to play in even when it is hot out. Isaac has a grove of trees to play in, and a grassy area for playing ball or running in the sprinkler. He loves his swing set and trampoline.

Kitchen/Dining Room
Our kitchen has a breakfast table that feels cozy for coffee and morning conversations and family devotional time using the Jesus Storybook Bible. Isaac and I do preschool activities and crafts at this table too. We have a google home to play music in the kitchen while cooking, and Isaac usually asks for a song he can dance to, like Moana, or Baby Shark. We have a walk-in pantry in the kitchen, and it is spoiling me. We eat dinner together every night (unless there is a school or church event) in our dining room. I (Laura) enjoy putting together healthy meals for our family. Right now while Isaac is young, the dinner hour can sometimes feel a little wild, but the rhythm of eating together happens and is important to us. During dinner we share our “Wows & pows,” meaning the highs and lows of the day as a way to connect. We love to have family or friends join us for a meal or take out, and every Friday night is pizza night! Isaac’s favorite thing in the kitchen is to help scramble eggs before they go in the pan. We include him as much as possible because it is so fun for him, and gives him skills he can use to bless his family one day! It will be so sweet to add another son or daughter to this fun surrounding food and fellowship!

Playroom/Reading Room
Other than the kitchen, we spend most of our time in the playroom/den. It looks over the backyard with big windows, so we are often in and out with toys. Built-in shelves by the fireplace store our puzzles, games, and toy bins. We call the front living room our “Reading Room” where we keep Isaac’s books in baskets on the ground so he can easily get to them. Lane and I chill in this room at night before going to bed as it looks onto the front yard and feels peaceful.

Bedrooms/Bathrooms
We painted the nursery recently, and love how the warm white color turned out. It has been fun to unpack all of Isaac’s baby things and get set up again for a new little one. We have a crib and cradle ready. The cradle will be set up in our room and used as a bassinet until we feel like baby is ready for the crib. Isaac liked having a smaller space at first, but every baby is different of course, so it is nice to have options. Safety is super important to us. For nighttime sleep, we have the “Owlet Baby Monitor” that monitors baby’s oxygen and heart rate. It is a little sensor that slips on their foot like a sock. We also have video monitoring in the nursery. We use organic diapers and unscented lotion in caring carefully for baby’s skin. Our formula choice is Baby’s Only Organic, and Isaac responded best to their lactorelief option as it easy to digest. We are glad for our glider chair to rock, snuggle and feed! Isaac and I sit in the chair now and pray for you and baby. The dresser is stocked with gender neutral sleepers and swaddle blankets. We have boy clothes in storage bins in the attic, or girl clothes in storage bins at our siblings’ homes thanks to all our nieces. Either way we are set! The nursery is still in progress, needing wall decor, a rug, and curtains, but it is already one of our favorite places to be.

Another blessing of this home is having 4 bedrooms. We have Isaac’s room, the guest bedroom, and “kids” bathroom at one end of the hall. On the other end of the hall is our master bedroom, a bathroom, and the nursery in between.

FAMILY ACTIVITIES/TRADITIONS
Both Lane and I are incredibly privileged to come from families that are Godly, loving, and supportive. Their marriages are committed to each other and the Lord. We recognize our personal character, marriage, and how we parent comes from the foundation both sets of parents provided for us. Our wonderful parents are now the best grandparents. They take joy in their grands individually by celebrating their interests and spending time with each grand doing the things they specifically enjoy. Our parents also take joy in fostering friendships between their grands collectively by hosting playdates and planning fun trips. They are happy to help at every turn and pray often for Isaac and our future little one. Our immediate family is also growing quickly! Lane has two sisters, and Laura has two brothers and one sister. All of our siblings love the Lord and have married wonderful spouses who do too. Your child will be joining a huge support system and crew of ten cousins- 6 of which live very close to our house. We had 2 new babies born in the family in the last few months, and three more are on the way! Isaac can’t wait to join the fun by becoming a big brother himself. We know he will be gentle and attentive. He is currently practicing with a baby doll and loves to hold his baby cousins.

Here are a few family rhythms in our own home that we’d like to share:

Nighttime Routine: Our favorite bedtime rhythm is a benediction we have memorized to say to each other nightly. We included it in our profile book, but our favorite line is “I’m not what I have, what I do, or what people say, I’m a child of God. No one can take that away.” We wanted to have a saying we could impress on our children to know their worth in God before they end each day. We pray God’s love sinks deep in the hearts and minds of our children. Each night after dinner Isaac and a future little one have a routine- Bath, lotion, brush teeth, vitamin, climb into bed, stories, pray, say the benediction, hugs & kisses, sing Jesus Loves Me, then lights out. It sounds like a lot but it flows easily and Isaac loves the prediction of it all. We know the routine will change as our children grow up, but we hope to always read, pray, and give hugs at the end of the day.

Morning Routine: Coffee, breakfast, Jesus Storybook Bible reading time, then a craft or free play if we aren’t going to preschool. Lane heads to work early for school starting, but gets home early too!

Weekly Rhythms: Evening walks or bike rides as a family with the dogs, and Friday night pizza, game and movie night! Isaac asks me if it is Friday yet most days of the week.

Vacations: Because we are both administrators at schools, our holiday time aligns with the school calendar. It is a huge blessing and privilege to have so much time to travel or relax at home. We spend a lot of this time with family coming to stay with us, or we drive to the beach, or fly to the Pacific Northwest. We have a week off at Thanksgiving, and an annual pie baking day where all the ladies get together and make more pie than our family can eat. As a family of 3, we bake Christmas sugar cookies to decorate, and eat white chicken chili while we set up and decorate our Christmas tree. Also Laura got a small tree for Isaac to have in his room, and he asked for one every year now “Cause it is magical,” so it sounds like all the kiddo bedrooms in our house will have trees!

Birthday Parties: They are a big deal for our cousin crew of family here locally! We have a great time celebrating birthdays together. There is always a theme of the birthday kid’s choice, and we open presents, play games, play outside and eat good food.

OUR ADOPTION JOURNEY
We have the (very excited) support of our extended family in opening our home to grow again. We want you to know if you were to entrust us with your child, we are ready to fall in love again. Your child would be joining us 3 with their own gifts, interests and personality that we will take joy in discovering, all the while being enfolded to our family from the start.

When Lane and I met, we talked early about building a family through adoption. I (Laura) grew up watching my parents care for families in our community in a variety of ways, and played with children who came to our family gatherings and spent time hanging out when needing extra support. This planted something deep in my mind that family is more than biology and it is important to help each other. After five years of marriage, we were ready to start a family and submitted an application to our adoption agency at the time. It was actually during the adoption process that we found out having biological children won’t be an option for us. Although we were saddened that our physical bodies were limited, we were also grateful the desire to adopt was our first choice in building a family and carried on with even more purpose.

We view adoption Biblically, as Galatians 4 states, God sent his Son Jesus to redeem us so we can be adopted into His family. The gospel is a message of adoption. Adoption isn’t something to be ashamed of or hidden. It celebrates the sacrificial love of a birthmother who chooses life for her unborn child, and looks beyond her own circumstances to make a plan that is best for her child. This takes great strength and will be what we speak of in our home when celebrating our child’s birth family.

Traditions in our home surrounding adoption:
-Birthdays: We protect Isaac’s actual birthday date, and would do the same if entrusted with your child, to be a family day. We show him our picture books that repeat and tell his adoption story, the love his birthmother has over him, and answer any questions he has- giving him space to process. We also light a birthday candle for his birthmother and pray for her. We eat a favorite meal and do something fun as a family. Then the following weekend we party big with cousins and friends.
-Christmas and Easter we place special emphasis on our adoption because of Jesus
-Correspondence: We email picture and letter updates to our adoption agency to share with Isaac’s birthmother, and would love to do the same for you. We enjoy doing so!
-We spend time with other adoptive families doing regular life together.

A little more about us….

ADOPTIVE FATHER ADOPTIVE MOTHER
Occupation Associate Head of School for an urban Christian independent school Admissions Director/Teacher for an Early Learning Center ministry (part time)
Education Masters in Business Administration Bachelors of Education 
Favorite Hobby Anything outdoors, sports (playing and watching), playing drums, reading Anything outdoors or going shopping with my mom & sister just to browse/find sales.
Favorite Food Chicken Parmesan Tacos
Favorite Dessert Cheesecake Coffee flavored ice cream 
Favorite Holiday Thanksgiving Christmas 
Favorite Movie Any of the Marvel Movies Hidden Figures
Favorite TV Show Blackish Madam Secretary 
Favorite Music Artist/Group Lately: Dave Matthews Lately: Tauren Wells 
Favorite Vacation Spot Alabama/Florida’s beaches Any beach in the Pacific Northwest or Alabama/Florida’s coast