"All of our experiences fuse into our personality. Everything that ever happened to us is an ingredient.”

Malcolm X, The Autobiography of Malcolm X

Welcome to our family. We want to share a bit about who we are and what we believe so you can get to know us better.

Malcolm X wrote the lines above after reflecting upon some of the most difficult and painful parts of his life. Those experiences became the foundation upon which he built his life’s journey of justice, faith and seeking the truth.  

These values are part of our family’s journey as well. We welcome the opportunity to share that journey with your child and with you in the ways you feel comfortable.

We imagine making an adoption plan must be a difficult for you so we want to paint a picture of what being part of our family might be like. We have been there for each other through challenging times, adding ingredients of healing, understanding and love to see each other through.  We will be there with your child too and together we will all grow.

We hope this book helps you to understand our family and the life we hope to create and share.

Christine, Pete, Cecilia and August

About Our Family

How We Got Here

After being together for six years and marrying four years ago, we knew we wanted to expand our family. We have been hoping for another child shortly after our son August was born almost 3 years ago. It took some time for us to accept that we were not going to be able to have more biological children. Christine has two siblings. Her mother always said “Life is not the same without a third child!”. Christine has always wanted three children to feel that her family is complete.  The more we reflected and learned about adoption, we knew it was the right choice for our family. We want to open our loving family to another child.

Our Story

How we met

Christine and Pete met at a work meeting about housing for people who were homeless. Christine was drawn to Pete’s passion and smarts. Pete was attracted to Christine’s intelligence, calm, and wide hazel eyes. They hung out as friends for a year before going on a date.

Our first date was a walk-through Christine’s neighborhood and ended up at the beach. It was a 70-degree Sunday in early March. After dipping our toes in the freezing cold water, we stopped to share a cup of coffee on an outdoor patio and shared stories about our lives and families. The connection that we felt from the beginning only grew stronger from there. 

About Us

Hello from Christine

Hello! I grew up with my Mom and Dad and am the oldest of three kids. My Mom is White and my Dad is Black, and I identify as a Black Woman. My family moved around a lot and growing up I lived in Elgin, Peoria and Chicago. I worked in Chile after college and learned how to speak Spanish.  I am a social worker and work in my neighborhood at a housing agency.  I love to cook and try new recipes. My friends and family count on me to bake a sweet potato pie for parties and gatherings. A perfect day with my friends includes going to a concert (Neo-Soul is my favorite) or a movie and dinner

Hello from Pete

Although Chicago is home, I have lived in Boston, Los Angeles and Quito, Ecuador. In my free time I enjoy reading novels and poetry, playing strategy board games and playing basketball. I also love riding my bike along the lakefront, especially when the waves crash up over the break wall.

Like Christine, I am also a social worker and work for an agency that provides apartments and services for people who are homeless. Christine and I share our core values and a sense of humor, which makes me grateful to have a partner who makes me a better person and being able to laugh along the way. With adding another child to our family, I look forward to watching all the children teach each other new and creative things, especially about activities they love.   

Our Home

Neighborhood

We live in Chicago in a diverse neighborhood on the North Side. Diversity is important to our family, so we chose a neighborhood where everyone is welcome.  Our block has families who have diverse races and ethnicities (Black, White, Latino & Asian), incomes (low income and middle class), abilities (disabled and able bodied), ages (young families and senior citizens) and sexual orientation (gay and straight).  We live a few blocks from the beach, park and tennis courts. We take walks by the beach, August climbs on the jungle gym and Cecilia loves to play tennis.

Family Life

We have an active home with lots of activities and laughter. Having solid routines helps our family life run smoothly. Pete is an early riser, getting the kids up in the morning and making Christine coffee. Pete takes Cecilia to school on the train and Christine walks August to daycare.  Christine makes dinner and we eat together every night. Friday night is “family night”. We eat pizza and play a game or watch a movie. Cecilia favorite movie pick is “Black Panther”!

Things we like as a family

The change of the seasons bring fun family activities. In the Spring, we wander through the Botanical Garden to smell the herb and vegetable garden. In the Summer, we spend time at the beach, building sand castles and swimming in the cool waters of Lake Michigan. In the Fall, we go to the pumpkin patch to go through the corn maze and eat apple cider donuts before trick or treating.  In the Winter, we bundle up and build snowmen in the backyard. 

How you fit in

We are a non-traditional family. We are biological parents, a step-parent and hope to be adoptive parents. We want you and your child to have a relationship in a way that is comfortable for you both. We can connect frequently, share photos and stories through email and text, or schedule visits - we are committed to finding the right balance for the relationship. If you are not comfortable right away with communication, but might want to be in contact in the future, we will keep the door open if you become ready.

Fun facts

Christine
  • My favorite TV show is Queen Sugar.
  • My favorite book is The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander.
  • I went to Funk Fest in Atlanta and saw Bell Biv Devoe and Eryka Badu.
  • I speak fluent Spanish because I lived in Chile for three years.
  • I love natural hairstyles and have had short naturals, twists and locks.
  • I collect mugs and magnets when I travel to new places.
  • I grew up watching the Bulls and have gone to a few games.  I try to catch a few Notre Dame football games on TV during the Fall.
  • I like to swim at the gym for exercise.
Pete
  • I love the feeling of free falling – on the Giant Drop at Great America or skydiving
  • I literally do stop to smell the flowers (sometimes...)
  • I wanted to be a marine biologist when I was in grade school
  • My favorite concert was seeing U2 at the United Center with Christine
  • Nothing beats a seafood dinner fresh from the ocean
  • I prefer tea over coffee, but drink coffee first thing almost every morning

Pregnant and exploring adoption?

If you’re interested in learning about adoption for your baby, we can help. We’re available 24/7. All of your information is confidential.

To speak to someone now, call our 24-hour hotline: (800) 272-3534 or text us at (312) 800-1559 (answered 8:30am-8pm).

If you’d like us to contact you, please use the form below.

If you are looking to adopt a child, please use this form or schedule a call with an Adoptive Parent Counselor.

If you are an adopted person looking for information, please schedule an informational consultation with our post adoption department.

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