Rj and Jeff
Dear Expectant Parent(s),
Thank you for reading about us! We are RJ, Jeff and Thea (age 4). We have yet to meet you, but we admire your strength, bravery, and courage by considering an adoption plan. We are a fun, loving, and energetic family who are very excited about being dads a second time. We know that this decision is not easy, but no matter what you choose, we wish you, your child, and your families the best. Thank you for taking the time to learn more about our family.
I was born and raised in Saginaw, Michigan & grew up in a small, loving family. As a child, I enjoyed playing with neighborhood kids, swimming, and doing outdoor activities with my dad. After graduating from Michigan State, I moved to Chicago, where I finished my graduate degree in public health from the University of Illinois at Chicago. I currently work as a research manager for Walgreens and am taking courses at Northern Illinois University. I enjoy cooking, music (especially pop Divas), gardening, trips to Michigan, and spending time with family, friends, and our daughter.
I was born and raised in Darien, Illinois. I am the youngest of three brothers in a very lively Polish / Italian family. Growing up, I enjoyed playing with my brothers, sports (wrestling and track), and cooking delicious Italian meals with my Nonna. After graduating from Eastern Illinois University, I moved back to Chicago to be close to my family, who all live nearby. I currently work in operations for a health insurance company. In my free time, I enjoy running, biking, being outdoors, reading, and spending as much time as possible with our family, friends, our daughter and our dog Mister (a German Pointer).
Even before we got married in 2015, we both knew we wanted to become dads and start a family and adoption was always our plan. Thea came into our lives shortly after we got married and we cannot imagine life without her. She is very curious, playful, talkative, silly, ticklish, and full of smiles. She enjoys being outside on the swings, singing, dancing (ballet & tap), and can play a few songs on the piano. She often says “come on boys” to her dads, and loves asking for family hugs. She would be a wonderful big sister and is thrilled about the idea of having a little brother or sister.
We met 12 years ago through mutual friends and started dating several years later. Since then, we discovered we have a lot in common; we both enjoy cooking, entertaining, playing board games, traveling, reading books, and spending time outdoors. We also share a desire to grow our family again through adoption. A typical day for us involves spending time with our daughter, playing in the yard or at a nearby park, and cooking/enjoying a meal together (preferably with Mac & Cheese). We have been together now for 9 years, and just celebrated our 5-year wedding anniversary.
Family is extremely important to us and was a huge part of both of our upbringings and remains so to this day. From early on in our relationship, we knew we both wanted to provide the same joy and unconditional love we’d experienced. We are so blessed to have our daughter in our lives and have been talking about growing our family one more time. We love being parents and want to provide a second child all our love and provide them with all the opportunity life has to offer.
We spend as much time as possible with our families and are lucky to have two twin nephews (Henry and Rocco, age 10) on Jeff’s side. We also enjoy spending time with RJ’s niece, Annika (age 15) and nephew, Luka (age 19). We regularly cheer on Jeff’s nephews at little league and hockey and enjoy baking, fishing, hiking and exploring Chicago with RJ’s niece and nephew.
Our families are both very excited to welcome a precious baby into our world and can’t wait for him or her to be a part of our family.
RJ’s mom, Dorothy, was very influential in our decision to pursue an open adoption. She placed a child for adoption before RJ and his sister were born. At that time, adoptions were primarily closed, and RJ’s mom never had an opportunity to discover anything about her son. While she always knew she made the right choice, she wished she had the chance to learn more about him. This personal adoption experience has made us strong believers in open adoption, and the level of comfort and understanding it allows. Sadly, Dorothy died five years ago and was never able to find him. However, RJ is hopeful that someday he will find his half-brother and tell him what a wonderful woman their mom was, and how much she cared for him by making an adoption plan.
We love our lives in Chicago and live in a very kid-friendly neighborhood on the northwest side of the city. Our house is on a quiet street within walking distance to a nearby park and elementary school. We have a lot of family and friends in the city, and we enjoy spending as much time with them as possible. Since Jeff’s family is all nearby, we get together with them for family dinners on the weekend. We care very much about our friends, who make up a diverse group and many of whom now have children of their own who are also adopted. Living in Chicago provides us with such great opportunities and the ability to have enriching, fun, child-friendly experiences with kids all the time.
Our Promise to You
You have our promise that we will encourage our child to follow their dreams, support their choices and guide them along the way. We will provide them with stability, security, and opportunity, but most of all, we will provide them with unconditional love and support through all of the joys and challenges life brings. We are so excited to create a close-knit family, just as we had when we were kids. We have so much to offer as parents and would be honored to have the opportunity to show you. Thank you again for considering us. We look forward to meeting you.