IT Consultant / Preservation Planner
We’re a California native and a British import residing in Southern California hoping to expand our little family through the gift of adoption. We met in 2007, married in 2009, bought a house in 2015, and became foster parents in 2018 through which we had the privilege of raising two littles. Our friends and family describe us as a loving, outgoing, and intelligent couple. However, we’d describe ourselves as just two kids at heart looking forward to fun family trips to zoos, theme parks, and abroad (seriously -- people give you sideways looks when you’re over 30 and visit Disneyland without children!)Fostering two infants taught us many things -- patience, perseverance, and that diaper explosions are real! Most importantly though it taught us the kind of parents we will be. We both believe strongly in a ‘child-centered’ environment. Our two foster loves quickly became the center of our world as we adapted our home -- and our lives -- around their needs. We also feel very strongly that a child needs to be free to be a child, to indulge their imagination and curiosity, to pretend and play dress-up! With both of our foster kiddos we’ve loved getting down to their level and engaging in creative play. But... All children have tantrums. And how you deal with the hard times is just as important as the good. We believe in letting a child know it’s okay to be mad and to help them develop tools to handle emotions in a constructive way. We found with our foster kids that ‘time-in’ was always more effective than time-out -- sitting with them away from the situation, giving them space to express their feelings. We're ready to learn more too, as we eagerly anticipate parenting again!
When we discovered we couldn’t have biological children, adoption immediately felt like the right path. Both of our families have experience with adoption -- as both adoptive parents and adoptees -- and they have encouraged us along this journey. At first, we opened our home to foster children in need of loving care while their birth families healed, and over the past couple of years, we’ve been fortunate to have two little ones come through our home. Fostering has taught us what being a parent is all about, and has strengthened our desire to welcome a permanent addition to our family through adoption.
We live in a single-family home in a small, diverse suburb in Southern California where we enjoy hearing the birds singing in the morning. We recently re-landscaped our backyard to include a large lawn, children’s play area, sandpit, and an outdoor playhouse. We’re also fortunate enough to live 30 minutes from the mountains or 30 minutes from the beach (unless it’s rush-hour -- then with LA traffic all bets are off!) and enjoy taking day trips on weekends to explore new places.
Although our family lives out of town, we road trip to Northern California a couple of times a year to see friends and Melissa’s family. Chris’ family lives in England which also gives us regular opportunities to travel to the UK. While the Queen sadly has still to invite us to Buckingham Palace, we remain optimistic....(kidding -- the invite went to our brother-in-law instead!) Our families have a lot of experience with adoption. Our sister-in-law Crissy is an adoptee and has been sharing with us what it was like growing up adopted and getting to know her biological family. Chris’ brother and wife also chose the path of adoption to grow their family and adopted two beautiful little girls who are becoming strong, intelligent women.
Chris about Melissa: You know how some people believe there is that there's "one perfect match" for everyone? Well, at the risk of sounding cliché, Melissa is my soulmate. Despite being generally magnificent -- she excels at everything she does and is a consistent inspiration to me. Melissa is humble, genuine, and caring. She's the youngest of three children and was raised by a single mother who sacrificed much so Melissa would have the opportunity to go to college and to travel. Melissa speaks fluent Spanish and even lived in Spain for a year during college. We met during Melissa's travels through England. After just a few short months of dating, I knew I would be willing to cross an ocean for her. And in the end, I quite literally did!
Melissa about Chris: Chris grew up on the outskirts of a large seaside city in southern England (yes, he has the cool accent!). As the youngest of four children, Chris' and three older siblings significantly influenced who he is today. One thing I love about Chris is how in touch he is with his "inner child"–he loves building Lego sets, watching cartoons from his childhood, and dressing up for Halloween (true story - he has been a Ghostbuster for the past 11 years, complete with a proton pack he built from scratch). Chris is also a proud Trekkie and has watched episodes of Star Trek so many times that he can recite the lines. In addition, DIY is also a passion of his — be it working on various house projects, working on our backyard, or generally building ‘things‘. Chris is my best friend and an amazing father to our foster children. I couldn’t think of a better partner in life and in the adventure of building our family.