We try to be open and honest with each other and everyone in our lives. Therefore, we embraced an open adoption with Madeline’s birthparents which includes letters and pictures. We are also committed to working with you, to develop a relationship that works for all of us. We hope that you will always be an important part of our child's life. We firmly believe that keeping an honest and open line of communication will only benefit our child, and enrich our lives as well.
Madeline Celeste was born on August 24, 2008 and was brought home from The Cradle on October 10 (Dawn’s 40th birthday). Madeline is a true blessing and every day we are thankful that she came into our lives. As an active toddler, Madeline loves going for bike rides, crayons, her sandbox, gymnastics and swimming. Madeline has a love for babies and plays lovingly with her dolls and stuffed animals; naming them all “mommy”, “daddy” and “baby”. She is very helpful around the house and will make a wonderful big sister. She is a social butterfly wherever she goes whether it is running errands or playing at the park with the neighborhood children.
We both grew up in Chicago close to our families, most of who still live here. Dawn’s family is larger than Mike’s by comparison but both are very close no matter the amount of people. We see our families often whether it is to celebrate a holiday, birthday or just get together for no reason at all. Adoption has brought nothing but positive support and excitement from our families. They cannot wait to welcome another new member of the family into all of our lives.
Dawn has one sister, Nicole, who is 6 years younger. Nicole lives in Los Angeles, CA but visits us via webcam weekly and in person for holidays. She is a great aunt who dotes on Madeline and is excited to equally spoil a new niece or nephew.
Mike has one brother, Vince, who is 4 years older. They have similar interests and mutual friends so spend a lot of social time together. Vince and his wife Joanne have one daughter, Sophie, who was born in 2000. We are not only aunt and uncle but also godparents to Sophie. Madeline and Sophie love spending time together and playing with Sophie’s dog, June.
The neighborhood boundaries smudge a bit when you get to the southwest side area known as Heart of Chicago ... or Pilsen; this is the area of Chicago in which we live. We love city life and our neighborhood. Heart of Chicago is an up and coming, diverse neighborhood. It is home to Mexican-Americans, Italian-Americans and Slovenians. Authentic Italian food, Mexican food, culture and art are among its richest assets. The buildings, streets, and even the El station are vividly painted with murals and mosaics. It offers a wide variety of cultural attractions for the community including the Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum, The Fiesta del Sol, the largest Hispanic festival in the Midwest and the Festa Pasta Vino, which is the oldest Italian fest in the Midwest. Several of Dawn’s family members call themselves neighbors too! Dawn’s cousin lives next door and another cousin, her husband and their 2 young daughters live down the street. We are close to the lakefront so it is easy for us to get outside and enjoy the lake path on our bikes, take long walks or just hang out at the beach. We also love to enjoy all the things this great city has to offer; from all the great ethnic neighborhood foods, festivals, museums, zoos and concerts to cheering on the Cubs at Wrigley Field. We have been lucky to have the chance to introduce Madeline to all of this and can’t wait for to be able to share the same experiences with another child.
As much as we love the comforts of home, we also love to travel. Our favorite places are our lake house in Michigan and Mesa, Arizona for Spring Training. Michigan is a great weekend escape (less than 2 hours from the city) to beautiful Donnell Lake where we cruise on our boat and enjoy the sunshine and great outdoors. Mesa is an annual trip we make in March with Dawn’s father and his wife who have a second home there. It is a great trip that we always look forward to. We also visit Maui frequently and have traveled to the Bahamas, Jamaica (our honeymoon), Mexico, New York, Florida, San Diego (home to Dawn’s stepsister and her husband), Los Angeles (home to Dawn’s sister, Nicole and good friend, Heidi) and Denver often to visit friends.
Dawn works for Comcast Spotlight, the advertising sales division of Comcast, where she is the Manager of Account Planning. Mike is a Sr. Solutions Engineering Analyst for Forsythe, which is an IT consulting company, where he provides support (documentation and resources) for the consultants in the field. Dawn and Mike continue to work, however, both have the flexibility to work from home and Mike’s mom, Terry, is our stay-at-home grandma (or Busia, which is Polish for grandma).
We believe that everything happens for a reason, and many times things are "meant to be". We know the choice ahead of you is a difficult one. Please know that whatever your decision, we know you make it with the best interest of your child at heart. We hope that by reading this synopsis of our life, you see that we are a happy and loving family who are eager to welcome another child into our home. If you'd like to get to know us better, please call The Cradle’s toll free hotline at 1.800.272.3534 to speak to an adoption counselor.
Dawn, Mike & Madeline