Describe your childhood: |
Linn: Fun. I have a brother very close in age to me and all of my memories are of us playing outside, whether swimming in our community pool, building forts in the woods, or riding bikes for hours! My dad taught us how to camp and fish while my mom dragged us all over the world traveling. My sister came along 9 years later and I spent a lot of time learning how to take care of her. Iím so grateful of how close all of us siblings are! I know how fortunate I am to be given the childhood I was and to always feel loved.
Jon: The best memory of my childhood is playing outside with my two younger brothers. We were constantly outside making mud pies and playing Army in the woods behind our house. We also played sports a lot in our backyard. I was very active in Boy Scouts growing up and went on numerous camping trips with my family.
Tell us about your home?
We like to think of our home as a modest and fun place to be. It is a bright and open two story, three-bedroom house in a family oriented community on the military post. We are so fortunate to have found this house because our neighbors on the right have 2 girls right around our daughterís age, whom she will walk to school with, and our other neighbors have an 18-month-old boy! All of our neighbors on our street have school age children and nightly you can find us all at the playground up the road. If weíre not at the playground, we will be walking the dogs or practicing riding bikes after dinner. There is also a pool and numerous small parks all within walking distance to our house and we absolutely love the security of living on post. We love being part of a neighborhood where people know and care about each other. Our best friends from Linnís officer training school recently moved just down the road as well and it has been wonderful cooking dinners and having such close friends nearby.
When you have a 3-day weekend, what do you like to do?
We have always had a fun and exciting life! The one thing that we routinely do is travel. We have a camper and love to take it to different parts of the country. We also love to do anything outdoors, and really enjoy going on cruises with family and friends. We both have a great group of friends who have young kids and we try and meet up once a year either at the beach or at Disney World. If we aren't traveling, we are relaxing at the house on the weekends. During the week we normally cook a home cooked dinner after work and on the weekends we try and go out to dinner Friday and Saturday nights. On the weekends we love to swim in the pool, fish, or go for a hike and on days where the weather is bad, we love to go to the movies. We also love to stay in shape and regularly work out. Overall, our life is one of travel and fun. We strive to live each day to the fullest!
Do you have pets? If so tell us about them?
We currently have 3 dogs. All three are scrappy looking terrier mutts that we've rescued. Rosie, Heidi and Scout have always been part of our daughter's life and she has definitely grown up loving and respecting animals. Pets are so wonderful because they teach kids a limited amount of responsibility at a relatively young age and they also provide a great sense of comfort. The dogs tend to gravitate towards kids and they in turn see them really as their first friends. Knowing our dogs will protect our house and especially our kids is incredibly assuring.
What do you hope to teach your children?
Christianity, kindness, compassion and integrity. Coming from the military and interacting with so many different types of children/families of all walks of life, we hope to be able to pass on to our children respect for one another no matter what your background. We hope to be able to instill a strong sense of integrity in our children and allow them the opportunity to excel at whatever they love.
Describe your neighborhood?
We live in Nevada which is a huge difference for us! We're both from the southeast and were a little hesitant about moving out west but it has been wonderful. That's the beauty of the military, it forces you out of your comfort zone and you realize how many fantastic places there are to live. We love our house and neighborhood here. We are in a gated community where the houses on either side of us have kids. We are always getting together out front for our kids to play together and we have a small community park where we walk the dogs or let the kids play.
What will you tell your child about their birthmother?
Hopefully everything we know! We are very open to sharing any and all information about our childís birth mother that we have. Initially it worried us to think we would have to share this information, but after adopting our daughter we realize how important knowing something about her birth mother is. We have kept all the pictures we have of our daughter's birth mother and even a voicemail or two from her, so as Anisten grows she will not only be able to see pictures but hopefully even hear her voice. We fully intend to do the same for our second child. We would tell our child that we prayed and prayed for a second child because we didnít feel like our family was quite complete. We would be so incredibly fortunate for the opportunity that another birth mother gave us, that we would want to say how special this child was because of how unselfish his/her birth mother was.
It's Daddy's day - what activity do you want to share with your child?
Definitely sports! I cannot wait to teach our child all about sports and sports teams. Whether it is teaching the basics of soccer or rooting for our favorite football team, sports will be an important part of our relationship. My father helped coach my baseball team when I was growing up. It was awesome having my dad around to mentor me and I canít wait to have that same opportunity one day. Even if we have another girl, I plan on being an integral part of her athleticÖ who knows maybe sheíll be the one teaching me!
What kind of education are you hoping to provide for your child - Private or Public?
Jonathan attended a Catholic schools until high school when he went to public school and had a great experience with both. His Catholic school was in a small town in Tennessee and allowed him to make a tight group of friends that he grew up with until College. Lindsay was raised in all public schools. She is from a small town in Florida and also had/still has a fantastic tight knit group of friends that they still get together every year to catch up. Because we are a military family we would anticipate a few more moves before we can retire and be home and in one place until the kids go off to college. The public or private school question would be determined wherever we end up and what is the best education opportunity for him/her.
How did you come to the decision of adoption?
The word adoption has been around Linnís family since she was little and has always been such a positive experience. As a 9-year old, Linnís aunt and uncle, whom she is very close with, adopted their son. It was such a positive experience and Linn is very close to her cousin. It was just normal, natural and no big deal that he was adopted. We always tossed the idea around in our heads, but never really considered it until we had our own infertility issues.
What faith will you raise your child?
Christian. As stated above we were both raised Catholic and still practice our Catholic faith. However, we both feel that is our job to teach our child about Jesus and expose them to what it means to have faith. In fact, faith is what has pulled us through our infertility and ultimately what has led us to adoption. Our hope as parents would be that our child has an active relationship with God, but we are simply here to expose and facilitate that relationship. If our child feels that the baptist, methodist, catholic or whatever religion suits him/her best we are on board. Their relationship with Jesus is ultimately what matters.
What kind of a relationship do you hope to build with your birthmom through her pregnancy?
We just hope to be there for her, to acknowledge that we are both in difficult situations and through that we find strength and courage in each other. I just have a feeling that weíre going to have a wonderful relationship.
How did you meet?
At work, in an airplane at 30,000 feet! - Jon was in the Army and I am Air Force Ė he thought he was mister big, bad, hot stuff Army guy, but he had a thing or two to learn about the Air Force way of conducting business. We flew together once, went on a date that Friday and couldnít be separated after that! I love that we met in our jobs, and doing something we both have the same passion for. It was a long shot staying together between the Air Force and Army careers but always said weíd sacrifice to stay together.
What attracted you to each other?
Probably our sense of humor and Faith. Weíre both pretty easy-going people from the South and share a strong work ethic and enjoy quality time together. On one hand we can be pretty spontaneous and decide to spend a week somewhere on vacation, while on the other hand we just love to sit out on our back porch and enjoy the day.
Please describe your personalities:
Linn: Fun loving, true, caring, great sense of humor! Linn is one of the kindest, most thoughtful people you will ever meet! She would do anything for anyone. I can see her amazing personality every time I see her beautiful smile!
Jon: Genuine, Loving, kind, thinks heís funnier than he is! Jonny loves people and gets along with everyone! He has a way of making you feel welcome and want to talk to him even if you just met him.
What are your hobbies?
Linn: Traveling, bowling, boating, fishing, running, reading.
Jon: Fishing, hunting, traveling, and running.
When you close your eyes and see yourself holding your precious baby in your arms what are your thoughts regarding the birthmother?
Sheer gratitude and amazement Ėitís honestly even hard to imagine actually holding another baby because itís something that we were so grateful for the first time. I just canít imagine being so lucky as to have another opportunity to be parents to another special angel.
How will a child enrich your life?
We are both from a family with 3 siblings and I always imagined and wanted 4 kids! I married my husband because of the kind of person he is and because I knew/know what kind of father he will be. We make a great team as parents and compliment each other well with balancing discipline and freedom for our child. We have been so blessed with our first child and can only imagine how our lives will change once again for the better with another baby in our lives. Obviously, we will not have 4 kids cause life had different plans for us, but we both feel how important it is for children to have siblings. We understand each child is completely different and look forward to discovering a whole new side of parenthood with 2 kids. We are ready for the challenge and fun!
Why did you each choose the career path you decided on?
Lin: I figured out pretty early on that we live in the greatest country on the planet; I wanted to help preserve our freedom and do something in return for the liberties and privileges I was given by simply being born in the United States of America. The great part about it is I love doing it! I still love being in the military and putting on a uniform every day even after 12 years. The Air Force is are extremely family oriented and allow you to put family first, which is why Iíve stayed in this great career for so long and hope to stay until retirement!
Jon: The Army first appealed to me after I received a 4-year, Army ROTC scholarship. At first, it was a great way to pay for college. Then after September 11th, it because much more than just a scholarship. While serving as a leader in the Army in charge of 30 men and 12 million dollarsí worth of equipment, I gained invaluable life lessons that I hope to one day teach to our children.