We're so happy to meet you...

Hello! Thank you for spending some time visiting our website and getting to know a little bit more about us. We know this might be a confusing and emotional time. The most important thing we want you to know is that we are committed to starting a family filled with love and surrounding a new baby with all the support that he or she could ever need. And we are here to support you and make you a part of this journey in whatever way feels right for you.

A little bit about us...

We have been friends for more than 12 years, together for 10 and married since October 2013. As we have grown together, our thoughts have always been set on starting a family. Figuring out the right way for us to do this has brought us to adoption. We know in our hearts this is the right path and we couldn't be more excited. We come from strong family ties and we are eager to share our experiences, traditions and love with a baby -- and develop new ones as a family.

Mark on becoming a dad…

I am definitely the more structured one in the relationship. Need a task list? I'm your guy. While there will be no shortage of sharing duties, I will probably be the organizer for many things, which I love to do. I've already started by knowing which baby items to start buying in preparation for the first day home and getting the nursery ready.

My family and I have a deep love for reading. Reading to the baby every night will be a tradition right from the start. We have the old nursery rhyme books and stories my parents read to me. With your permission, I would love to have any books or stories that you heard growing up so I can share them during reading time.

Nate on becoming a dad…

There are so many reasons I am excited about becoming a dad it's hard to really list them all. Growing up, I was lucky to have the chance to try many things, from acting in school plays and playing in the band to playing baseball and basketball. If there is one thing I'm excited about in becoming a dad it is being there with my son or daughter as they experience different things and learn what they are passionate about.  One promise I will always keep is to love him or her for exactly who they are.

A crazy awesome family…

The baby will be welcomed into a loving family surrounded by four grandparents, six aunts and uncles, and six first cousins who couldn't be more excited for a new arrival. We are very close to our sisters and their families. We're always connected through frequent FaceTime calls over the weekend and a family WhatsApp group that blows up constantly with pictures. Beth is Mark's Irish twin at only 11 months younger. She lives five blocks away and will be a central figure in the baby's life.

We love the holidays, both the traditional and the off-the-wall. Christmas is a particularly big event with a Christmas Eve family gathering that sometimes has than more than 50 people attending. But, our biggest holiday might just be Halloween. Our Chicago neighborhood goes crazy with trick or treaters that night, and it's a blast. A Ghostbusters theme with a Stay-Puft Marshmallow Baby might already be in the works.

Connected to our community…

We live on Chicago's Northside on a tree-lined street with many families. We have been lucky to have a front-row seat as our friends have started families. Several have adopted through The Cradle and we have watched their experiences closely, which has had a big influence on us. We are so grateful to have them as support and the idea of our son or daughter having Cradle Cousins sounds like an amazing extended family. We also have been fortunate to watch our closest friend's two-year old twins Luke and Clare grow up right before our eyes.

Our views on openness…

Having a big, diverse family is a really unique life opportunity. Communication and honesty will always be at the core of the relationship we establish with our child—and you. We will respect any boundaries you request while always keeping the door open to you.  We promise to make sure your presence is reflected in any special way that makes you feel proud so our child will feel confident in who they are and where they come from.

After the stork arrives…

We know the first year will be a pretty wild ride, but also a really fun and important time. We both are lucky to have generous paternal leave arrangements with our jobs that will allow us to spend the first several months at home. We also have eager families that couldn't be more excited for a new arrival and have already made plans to spend time with us after the stork arrives. Aunt Beth lives down the street, so she will be just one quick text away from baby time.

Long-term, we will alternate from work at home situations to taking advantage of nanny services. We also think having other kids around is an important part of early development. We have many friends that are having babies now and we are starting to plan dual nanny care situations.

Thank you…

We are humbled that you have spent a little time getting to know more about who we are and the kind of family we aspire to be. Just know, no matter what decisions you make, you have our eternal support.

With love,

Fun facts

  • Played the clarinet for 6 years and loved playing the Lion King scorecard.
  • Loves to listen to "All I Want for Christmas" by Mariah Carey loudly all year around.
  • Britney is a guilty pleasure. He even went to one of her shows in Vegas (dragging Nate kicking and screaming).
  • He is a little nervous our child might be 6'5" versus his 5'5" stature. That could make for some interesting family pictures.
  • He's better at cooking dinner on the stove top versus baking cakes in the oven.
  • While he might not be the biggest guy in the crowd, his friends always remark he has the biggest laugh.
  • He loves vanilla ice cream any way he can get it and hates anything super spicy. His favorite color is green (the luck of the Irish).
  • Played the tuba all through high school and briefly thought about going to school to play professionally.
  • Has a very odd sneezing trait. It always happens in odd numbers of 7-15.
  • Performed improv comedy at The Second City and iO.
  • Loves geography and maps. He knew all the state capitals before the age of 5.
  • Known for being a grill master. Perfect steak every time.
  • Owned more than 10,000 baseball cards as a kid and can name every baseball player in the history of the sport (well, that's what Mark thinks).
  • Loves anything with pesto. Hates celery with a passion. His lucky number is 19.

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 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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