Quality Assurance Automation Engineer (computer software) / Adjunct Instructor; Photographer
Caucasian / Other
Matt and I met sometime around 2010 through an organization called Young Life. When we met, I was working for Young Life part-time, and Matt was a volunteer. The group we were working with was specifically for students with disabilities. I remember noticing how much Matt cared about getting to know the students; my romantic feelings toward him wouldn’t develop until later, but I noticed his character early on and knew he was someone different and special. A few years later we ended up in a Bible study together. We had a few mutual friends that were also in our group and we began spending time together as friends within the group. About a year later we started dating and the rest is history. We were married in October 2016 with our family and friends in attendance. Matt and I both have jobs that we really enjoy. Matt works as a QA Automation Engineer for a school software company and I have two part-time jobs. One of my jobs is teaching at the local community college. I teach classes designed for students who have disabilities. I’m also a photographer and have the opportunity to photograph weddings, families, and sometimes food for local restaurants. In our free time, we’re normally doing hobbies or spending time with family and friends. Matt is a great woodworker and has built quite a few items for our home. He refaced our kitchen cabinets and made built-in shelving in our living room. Matt also grew up surfing and going to the beach with his dad. Surfing and spending time at the beach is still one of his favorite pastimes and he can’t wait to share that experience with his kids. One of my favorite hobbies is cooking. My mom is a wonderful cook and when I was young I loved sitting at the counter watching her cook. It’s something I’ve come to enjoy myself and I can’t wait until our kids are old enough to cook with me. Together, Matt and I enjoy traveling, exploring new places, and planning out our next adventure. While we love to get out and see the world, we’re also very content with staying home, sitting on the couch, with a bowl of popcorn, watching 90 Day Fiance. We have a wonderful marriage. One of the things we’re extra thankful for is that we have friendship as the foundation of our relationship. We truly enjoy each other, not just as husband and wife, but as friends.
The desire to adopt a child was planted in Rachel's heart when she was a teenager. Early in our relationship, we talked about adopting, regardless of whether or not we were able to have children on our own, and agreed that we would try to adopt, no matter what. We believe that adoption is a beautiful demonstration of God's love, and look forward to sharing that love with a child.
We recently bought a home in a beautiful community in southern California. We love it here. There are lots of parks and community pools right outside our door. The elementary school is also within walking distance of our home. There are lots of kids who live in our neighborhood. This community is filled with families and kids of all ages. We both have family members who live close by. We have a wonderful support system and they cannot wait to have a new little life come into our family. We are fortunate to have parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents, and friends who have supported and encouraged us during our adoption journey. Any child would be blessed to have the love of all these wonderful people in their life.
Rachel about Matt: In addition to being smart, hard-working, and funny, Matt is truly one of the kindest, most compassionate people I’ve ever met. His first consideration when conflict arises is how other people might be feeling. If someone does something rude or inconsiderate, Matt's first thought is usually, “I wonder why they did that? Maybe they're having a really bad day." Instead of reacting in anger, Matt instead wonders if maybe the person's parent or spouse is in the hospital, or their dog just died and that they may need some extra kindness from the people around them. When I think about Matt being a dad, I absolutely can't wait, knowing that he will always respond to his children with kindness, understanding, and a listening ear.
Matt about Rachel: Rachel is an incredibly loving and giving person. She is always the person to step up when someone is in need. Whether it be cooking a meal for someone experiencing a major life event or helping a friend move, Rachel is there to help with whatever needs to be done. Rachel is also fun and likes to laugh. She loves exploring new places and does an amazing job of taking photos of each of our adventures.
We met through an organization called Young Life. I was on staff and Matt was a volunteer. Time went on and Matt began volunteering with another group within the same organization, so we didn’t see each other often. A few years later, we ended up in a bible study together and began hanging out as friends. About a year after we started hanging out, Matt asked me on a date. We went on the best first date ever and a year later, we were married.
Don’t ever let anyone tell you what you can’t accomplish what you set your mind to do.
We believe that an open adoption should be something that is decided on a case-by-case basis. In almost every case, I think sharing general life updates and photos is something we’d be comfortable with if that’s something that the birth mother/parent wants. We’re a bit more hesitant when it comes to the child having contact with their birth mother/parents when they are young. If the child and birth mother/parents are in a healthy place mentally when the child is older (late teens), we would be open to discussing our child having a relationship with their birth mother if all parties are open to it.