Dear Expectant Mother,
It’s Sunday morning and Dennis and I have been sitting in our garden, reading the morning paper and talking about how excited we will be to become parents. We have been talking about all that we look forward to sharing with our son or daughter. When we imagine being dads, we envision sitting in the garden with our child on our lap, feeding them breakfast and choosing from a pile of fun children’s books to read. We can’t wait to turn the colorful pages of storybooks – we imagine that the pictures and stories will bring on giggles and delight. We enjoy cooking as well; breakfast will be delicious.
After a child joins our family, Dennis will be able to be at home with our child. We are both looking forward to this – we think that our child will benefit from having a parent at home, as we did growing up. We’ll also create opportunities for him or her to play with other children. We can’t wait to answer all the sweet questions that children ask about the world around them. As we think ahead to the warm, relaxed times together in the years to come, we imagine taking walks in the beautiful park nearby. When the time comes, we will test out the new child’s bike on the bike path and then try our hand at cooking recipes together in the kitchen. We hope that, with your help, we’ll realize our dream of becoming parents. We’re very grateful to you for considering us.
We are a young couple and have been partners for many years. We live in The Netherlands, also known as Holland, a small country in Europe. A plane flight is about an hour longer than one from California to the East Coast and we love coming to the United States, so visits over the years would be comfortable for us if you’d like that. We are dedicated to making sure that geography is not a barrier to our staying in touch over the years if that’s something you’d like.
The Netherlands is a wonderful country, with a long historic tradition of tolerance and respect for differences. People are very welcoming of everyone, regardless of race, religion or other aspects of who they are. Everyone is given an equal chance to get ahead and succeed. This honest, open and respectful manner makes neighborhoods, schools and communities in The Netherlands an inspiring and friendly place for children to grow up.
In our country, we’re very fortunate that the government provides financial assistance with the costs of college for all students. Parents pay for their child’s education within their means; we have already begun to save for our child’s further education. However, all students have the advantage of guaranteed governmental assistance with the costs of a college education. Young adults are not burdened by student loans when they finish their education.
In 2008, UNICEF (the children’s organization that reviews the welfare of children around the world) evaluated the child-related programs and benefits available to children in different countries. They looked at health care, education, the safety of the neighborhoods and family programs available to children. Our country was ranked as the number one country of all developed countries with regard to the overall quality of life for children. Our country is known for excellence in areas important to a peaceful, healthful and encouraging childhood. Children do well when growing up here.
From the beginning of our relationship, we talked about our hopes that we could someday be adoptive parents. We met each other during a night out with our friends –we talked for hours and found that we had so much in common. We found that we had similar interests and a similar sense of humor as well. We have been inseparable ever since that time.
Although there was an instant sense of connection, we have grown to love each other even more over the years. It was great to learn of our mutual interest in becoming parents. We had a similar image of enjoying all the sweet moments of childhood. We are quite realistic about and ready for all the responsibilities as well. Our relationship is open, warm and loving and we respect each other’s individuality. We are life partners as well as best friends.
If, after learning about us, you want to choose us to raise your child, your son or daughter would grow up in a large extended family. We both come from close families whom we see often. We see Dennis’ parents about once a week and travel to see Niko’s family once every two weeks. Dennis’ brother and his girlfriend visit us every week as well. Your child will have relatives who are knitting booties and sweaters, aunties and uncles bringing toys to play with, and an uncle who will take them out for breakfast to have a mountain of pancakes with syrup. The grandparents will take tender walks, hand in hand, in the park, and will sing them to sleep when no one is looking. In our family, there is a lot of time spent talking with each other and laughing. We enjoy cooking together and particularly enjoy playfulness when things spill, get a bit too crispy or come out so perfect that the dish is gobbled up before it hits the main table. Your child would know joy with us.
Niko’s parents enjoy baking delicious cakes and breads; during the holidays, his parents bake Christmas bread and meringues that are always delicious. Niko’s dad and Niko particularly enjoy baking certain Dutch delicacies during the holidays.
Dennis’ mother is known for her traditional stews which we love eating especially in the winter during our once a week family gatherings. His mother also works at a bakery and regularly comes over with delicious cakes and breads for the family.
About three times a year, we travel with our parents and sisters and brothers for a long holiday weekend. We usually travel to a gorgeous area in Netherlands, live in a vacation bungalow and enjoy nature with family around us. These kinds of weekends are great for kids. The children will enjoy playing with each other and the parents and grandparents can enjoy chatting with each other about anything and everything.
Once a year, our extended family travels to the tropical and beautiful location of Curacao in the Dutch Antilles to visit Niko’s brother Rene and his girlfriend Chantal; they picked a beautiful place to live. We often go diving, snorkeling and hiking through the national park or in the city; we can’t wait to share the beauty of Curacao with our daughter or son.
Both of our families are very eager to welcome a child into our family. Our extended families have always played a major part in our lives. We are sure that they will also play a big role in our children’s lives. They can’t wait to share in the joy of parenthood with us! Dennis’ parents, brother and his girlfriend live just ten minutes from us by car; Niko’s parents about an hour’s drive from us. Most of our friends and family have children who are looking forward to the day when we’ll bring a child for them to play with as well. We visit both families as often as we can.
Our parents will become Grandfather, “Opa” in Dutch and Grandmother, “Oma” in Dutch, for the first time, they’re very excited and hope to embrace their grandchild soon! All our friends and family are looking forward to play and give their unconditional love to our daughter or son. The godchild named Hidde of Dennis would love to play with our son or daughter.
We are very blessed, thankful and happy with our family, friends and our dog Charlie. Nevertheless, our lives would be totally complete if we can adopt a baby, so we can share the love and all opportunities that life offers.
While we live at a distance from you, we want to reassure you that we will be comfortable if, over the years of your child’s growing up, you might like to get together in person to see how your son or daughter is doing. If you don’t want this, we understand, but if you do, we want you to know that we won’t let geography get in the way of staying in connection over the years. We will gladly travel to where you live as well as stay in touch with phone, email, Facebook or other means that feels right to you.
We’re also happy to send regular hard-copy photographs and letter updates, talk on the phone or whatever you might find helpful to feeling reassured that you made a good decision for your child. We want you to feel confident that your son or daughter is thriving. We think children can benefit from knowing you as they grow up – you can be reassured that they understand your reasons for making an adoption plan and that they appreciate you for who you are and know your love.
This is the perfect time in our lives to welcome a child into our family because our careers are stable and successful and we have the time and flexibility to be very active parents. Niko works for a local hospital and enjoys his work. Dennis works as a team manager at the largest bank in the Netherlands; I’m proud of the role that our bank has taken with investing with ‘social responsibility’. I lead a team of 18 employees responsible for educating others about various banking services. I get a great deal of satisfaction coaching our employees and watching their confidence in their work build over time.
After work, we often go for a walk with our dog Charlie and then cook and eat dinner together. We take turns cooking, because we both have studied cooking and like to try new things. Two or three times a week, after dinner, we get some exercise. Niko is active in rowing and Dennis is a runner. On weekends we run together and we often go on the road with our dog through the park or along the beach.
Every month, we pay a visit to nearby Amsterdam, and enjoy visiting friends. There’s a particularly fun market, called the Albert Cuyp market, which is varied and exciting place to shop. Because this market is so incredibly multicultural, we find all kinds of exotic herbs, spices and vegetables that we try out in new dishes. We both love to read — novels and adventure stories top our favorites. Because there are many family and friends in the neighborhood, we visit Dennis’ parents as well as Niko’s.
We love to visit other cities and countries and learn about other cultures. Niko is the planner and Dennis loves to follow his lead. Dennis likes things as well organized in advance as possible, so he tends to study the particular city or country ahead of time. He welcomes feeling knowledgeable about what there is to see and do. Niko is more spontaneous and enjoys the moment, even if unplanned. We enjoy our differences and travel well together; it would be so much fun to include a child for whom all the world will be exciting and new.
During warm weather, we enjoy biking on the Veluwe (a nature park). The nice thing is that we can also take the dog in a cart behind the bike. Picnics are popular so it is a frequent activity with friends. In the winter we go ice skating together on firm, thick icy ponds in parks and we go skiing at least once a year with a group of friends. Niko is a great skier and enjoys it tremendously. Dennis is very social and this ensures that the group stays together and we manage to find each other. We complement each other perfectly in this way.
We often surprise each other with breakfast in bed, or by making a healthy smoothie at the start of the workday. One evening, Niko surprised Dennis by just showing up at his office, at the end of a work day, to take him to dinner. We enjoy an occasional evening at the theater or the movies and afterwards we enjoy talking about what we’ve seen.
After quite a bit of searching, we found our dream home. We wanted a house that was in a child-and family-focused community with great schools. The house we found is only a few minutes from our future child’s school. Because the school is so close, our daughter or son can easily come home for lunch and even bring friends. When school ends at three thirty in the afternoon, a loving father (or two) will be picking them up, with our dog Charlie, of course, for the sweet walk home. Middle school is, similarly, quite close.
Our house is a traditional classic Dutch townhouse with beautiful original details throughout the house. Our child will have plenty of places to hang their artwork and play hide and seek with friends. We fell in love with this house the moment we set foot in our new home. There are spacious living rooms in which our child and their friends can play and a very nice kitchen where we look forward to cooking brownies, cakes and new dishes, together. Our home also has a lovely and spacious garden in the back where children can easily and safely play.
This is a family-oriented neighborhood with many children. There are numerous playgrounds and parks. Our city has been named the greenest city in Europe. A few minutes’ walk brings us to a beautiful park. We can’t wait to go out and walk as a family (we must admit that we like going there already just by ourselves and our dog Charlie!) We only live a ten minute walk from the forest to enjoy the beauty of nature. The shops are a few minutes walk away.
My parents are Marianne and Dirk and they are not only supportive of our adoption plans – they’re experienced! When I was young, my parents served as foster parents – they were glad for the opportunity to help families who had temporary needs. The children they helped have stayed in touch with our family over the years. Remembering how they raised my brother and me, I learned from my parents that it’s best to give children clear boundaries and limits, but, beyond that, it can be very helpful to give children a lot of room to grow and explore their interests.
As a result of their style of parenting, I have become a social, spontaneous and ambitious person. My parents made me feel a great sense of openness with them; we have always been able to discuss anything with each other. This experience of openness and trust is something we both definitely plan to create for our son or daughter in our home as well.
While I work as a hospitality manager, my job is structured so that I work on only four days; I look forward to being able to be with our child over three days per week. Dennis will be at home full time and I will be able to very active in our child’s life as well.
My parents are Harrie and Ingrid; I also have a brother, Rob, with whom I am close. We have a large extended family with four uncles and five aunts, total, from both sides of my family; and then there are their children! Our parents still live in our family home and I’ve stayed friends, all my life, with a close group of classmates.
I learned a lot about being a good father from my parents. They really tuned into my interests and my brother’s interests –they cared to know about what mattered to us. If we needed help or guidance, they were right there for us. I enjoyed cooking as well as participating in scouts and biking. From our parents, I learned how to listen carefully to a child’s needs, how to support a child’s efforts without giving too much pressure and how to help a child take all the steps necessary to becoming a self-supporting adult. I am grateful for the childhood they gave me and I hope to pass on that gift to our child.
Niko and I have been talking for years about our longing to be parents. We’ve considered all the different aspects of becoming parents, including thoughts about how to give our child whatever they might need growing up. I am so glad that we now live close to our friends and family since this will be a particularly good experience for our child. When we are blessed with a child, I will stop working and become a stay at home parent. I am so looking forward to spending my days raising my son or daughter! In my spare time, I enjoy activities like running and cooking, and I love going to markets.
We both have both traveled extensively and have seen a lot of the world, and we plan to continue to do so with our child. We feel it is so important that a child see how differently people live around the world. As you can see in our pictures, Disney and New York are a couple of our favorite travel destinations. We have traveled throughout the US, as well as to Mexico and the south of Europe together. We very much look forward to taking our son or daughter on these vacations with us when he or she is old enough.
We believe that every child is unique and special, and want to provide the individual love, nurturing, and support they need to grow, thrive and to be who they are. We both feel that communicating together with clear boundaries and lots of love is very important for our children as they grow up.
If you decide to choose us to be parents to your child, we will provide a safe and loving family and home filled with both fun and understanding. We will cherish your child and give him or her all of life’s opportunities. Parenting is the most important thing for both of us, and we can’t wait to begin our journey. We want you to know that we will both spend as much time as possible with your child; they will feel wonderfully loved and well cared for. We will always raise them to respect the process of adoption and your courage in focusing on what you felt your child needed, first and foremost.
Thank you for considering us. If you want to learn more about us or speak with us, please let Full Circle (1.800.452.3678) know and they will be responsive to you. Thanks again for considering us.