Introduction

Dear Expectant Parent(s),

Hi there, we’re Janell and Shawn. We appreciate you taking the time to read our profile. We know that reading about potential families can be overwhelming, so thank you for considering us.

Our Story

Our story began in 2014 when we connected on a dating app in Los Angeles. We clicked instantly and grew closer over time. A few years of a long-distance relationship strengthened our communication and confirmed our desire to be together. In 2017, we started our life in Seattle and got married in 2019. We have a little dog named Buddy, a dachshund chihuahua mix, who’s been a cherished part of our family. In 2022, we relocated to the Boston area to be closer to Janell’s family.

We’re not just partners; we’re best friends. Supporting each other is a priority for us, regardless of the situation. We share a passion for travel and have explored various countries like France, Argentina, Australia, Morocco, and Iceland. Our list of dream destinations is still long. Most of our free time is spent together, and we equally share household responsibilities equally.

Even before we met, we both considered open adoption as a path we wanted to take to parenthood. Once we decided on a life together and learned about our infertility, we decided to start the journey to adoption and settle into the right home and environment for building our future family.

About Janell

Since I was a child, I was always curious about people and cultures. My mother and father, both Jewish, created a home where we were encouraged to connect with people from different backgrounds. This upbringing led me to get a PhD in anthropology, during which time I lived and studied in Morocco and learned to speak Arabic and French. Now, in my job as a researcher in the technology sector, I help companies better understand and help their customers.

Among Shawn and my friends, I’m known as the person to go to for advice and direction when things feel hard. I care deeply about understanding the problems people face and what they want to achieve and then helping them see things in a new light.

Home is so important to me – from making time to plan out menus and activities for the Jewish holidays I was raised with, to creating calm and nurturing spaces to relax and craft, to welcoming family and friends. I hope to welcome a child into a home where they, too, can enjoy getting to celebrate, create, connect, and feel supported.

About Shawn

I grew up in Los Angeles, raised by a single working mother. My mother is white and of Danish and German heritage, and my father is from India. I have always identified as mixed and celebrated the customs and traditions of both sides of my family. Throughout my life, I have found solace and peace in nature and the outdoors, hiking, picnicking, and camping.

From friends to work, I am a consensus builder who is able to bring people together to find common ground. I put this to use today working from home as a Technical Program Manager for a Fortune 100 technology company, bringing different groups together to build better products.

I love to cook and enjoy tasting and learning how to cook new foods. Eating meals together as a family is important for me, with tasty and nutritious foods from different cultures. At home, I love blending the food and traditions from Janell with food and traditions from my own mixed background. I’m excited to help a child explore and learn the cultural traditions and food from their background.

Our Home

Our four-bedroom, three-bathroom home has a lovely, fenced backyard where our dog Buddy loves to run around. The house has an open floor plan downstairs, with the living room, kitchen, and breakfast table all being in one large area. It’s a great place to gather in the morning and evening as we make breakfast and dinner. Upstairs are the quiet bedrooms which overlook our yard.

As an interracial couple, when we purchased our home in 2023, we chose to live in one of the most diverse suburbs of Boston. We are close to various Asian, African, Indian, and Hispanic grocery stores, salons and barbershops, and restaurants.

We live on a quiet and family-oriented side street, where neighbors take the time to get to know one another. Our block has a number of families with children of different ages riding their bikes and playing in the front yards.

While our neighborhood is quiet, it is near the zoo, aquarium, many museums, and all the amazing historical sights of the city. We are members of several local museums and nature societies and enjoy visiting them on the weekends. We are a short walk from two large parks with wonderful playgrounds and splash pads, as well as forested hiking trails.

Our Family

We both grew up in loving and supportive families. We talk with our families regularly, and they are excited and supportive of our decision to adopt and looking forward to welcoming a new child into the family.

We enjoy traveling to visit Shawn’s family in Seattle several times a year. Janell’s family are all on the East Coast, and we see them several times a month. Her parents and younger brother live in the country on 6 acres of fields and forest, and we look forward to bringing a child there in the summers to wander and explore together.

For us, holidays are an important time to celebrate together as a family, whether Thanksgiving with a large extended family or setting up the tree together for Christmas. We also love to create new traditions that combine parts of our different cultural backgrounds and engage with cultural activities and festivals in the wider community.

In addition to our supportive families, we both have close friends who have been in our lives for many years, with children of various ages that we love to visit. These friends and their children will also be a part of the supportive community, helping the child learn and grow.

Hobbies, Interests, and Traditions

Shawn is passionate about cooking and grew up learning to make curries with his Indian father and baking Christmas cookies with his Danish grandmother. Janell loves to help him in the kitchen and also explore markets and restaurants together in search of new flavors. Janell loves languages and sharing new words with Shawn since she speaks French and Arabic and has also studied Spanish, Mandarin, and Hebrew. Together, we have travelled to places Janell has lived, like Morocco, and new places for both of us, like Argentina and Iceland.

We look forward to sharing our love of food, travel, and languages with the child we adopt, but particularly making sure that they know the tastes and sounds of their birth family.

We are a family that loves to make space for creativity and learning new things. We can often be found reading books from the library, going to museums, or doing crafts and DIY projects. Janell loves crocheting and painting out in nature, while Shawn loves to figure out how to build things for our home. In our home, we have places to read and create that we can’t wait to share with a child.

For fitness and exercise, we love going to local parks for long walks with our dog. We also love seasonal outdoor activities like kayaking in the summer and snowshoeing in the winter. At our local YMCA, we go to group exercise classes together at least once a week. Shawn is particularly happy in the water and looks forward to teaching the child we adopt how to swim.

Thank you,

Thank you so much for taking the time to read our profile and learn more about us. We know this is a difficult decision, and trust that you are going to do what’s best for your heart.

If you choose us, we promise to provide a loving, welcoming, nurturing, safe, and stimulating environment for your child. We value curiosity and learning and will give a child the best educational opportunities and support possible.

It’s important to us that the child understands the culture and traditions of their birth family, as well as our cultures and traditions.

But more than anything, we want you to be able to have whatever relationship with us and the child that you feel comfortable with. We value openness and transparency in our own relationship and in our home.

Sincerely,

Janell & Shawn

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