Camille + Alec
We are Camille, Alec, and Sophie, and we are looking forward to introducing ourselves to you. We deeply honor and respect your interest in considering adoption. We know that it is not an easy decision to make. We want you to know that we are completely committed to providing a loving, safe, warm household in which your child can grow and thrive.
Our first child, Sophie, was born in 2020. Shortly after having Sophie, we learned that Camille has a health condition which would make any future pregnancy high risk for both her and the baby. However, we knew that we still wanted to add to our family and decided to explore other options for doing so.
Adoption runs deep in our family and we know it is the perfect fit for us. Camille's mom and two maternal uncles are adopted, and we have cousins on both sides who are adopted. We are so excited to add yet another family member through adoption!
We were both motivated to experience city life and engage with history, culture, and education by moving to Boston for school. We met in university on a study abroad trip to Brussels and Prague. We were both so interested in exploring that we'd often break away from the larger group of students who were headed to the bar. Instead, we would seek out the niche neighborhoods and less popular historic and cultural sites. Camille must have been attracted to Alec's capability of quickly navigating a foreign city, as it wasn't long before we had our first kiss in Brussel's gilded Grand-Place.
After university, we lived in Rhode Island while Alec worked in Boston and Camille worked in Connecticut. It was there, after about three years together, that we got engaged during a romantic picnic at the beach. The following year, 2015, we were married outdoors in the mountains near Camille's hometown. We have always operated as equals in our relationship. We respect each other's capabilities, strengths, weaknesses, and emotions. We make decisions together and have made tradeoffs in careers, locations, and time in order to support each other and our family the best that we can.
Meet Camille (By Alec):
Camille is fiercely guided by her empathy and kindness towards friends, family, and neighbors. She is intently focused on ensuring that others are well cared for, and devotes much of her free time to doing things for those around her: thoughtful activities for Sophie, homemade food for gatherings, or care packages for extended family.
She is an incredible mother who currently stays at home with Sophie, making that her highest priority each day. Sophie is engaged, learning new words, playing games, or singing songs. We take a Montessori-lite approach to raising Sophie, so Camille engages with her by having her help with meal prep, cleaning up spills, building crafts, or allowing Sophie to explore the yard.
As to adoption, there's nothing that Camille is more engaged with (except maybe Sophie) and excited for. She's incredibly motivated to meet our future child. Motherly achievements notwithstanding, Camille is an accomplished structural engineer who loves working on historic buildings, preserving and re-invigorating important buildings for their next 100 years. At some point (maybe when the kids get to school age), she plans to return to work or partner with a former colleague to found their own firm.
Meet Alec (By Camille):
My favorite thing about Alec is his mind. He thinks deeply and is always coming up with creative solutions. He is very funny and certainly can banter. However, if you ask him a serious question, he will sit and think about it thoroughly. Then when he delivers his response, it is always thoughtful and eloquent.
In his professional career, Alec works as a life insurance actuary. To be honest, I have never fully understood what exactly Alec's work entails and I almost need a dictionary to comprehend all the jargon when he attempts to explain it to me. However, I generally understand that it is the math behind life insurance, requires a deep understanding of high level math and statistics, and involves quite a bit of computer programming. Alec works from home, which allows us to spend plenty of family time together even when work is busy.
It is obvious that Alec loves being a dad. He will sometimes sneak out of his office in between calls just to see Sophie for a few minutes. Alec enjoys all of the typical dad activities like tossing Sophie in the air and taking her out exploring at the park. However, I think he gets just as much fulfillment out of the gentler activities like tucking Sophie in for bed, feeding her a bottle when she was an infant, and comforting her when she wakes up during the night. There has been more than one occasion where Alec has walked out of Sophie's room wiping tears of love and joy after reading her a bedtime story and tucking her in for bed.
Our daughter, Sophie, is a delightful, hilarious, sweet toddler girl. Everyone who meets her comments about what a happy child she is. Sophie is fascinated by babies and always makes sure that her baby doll gets milk and a pacifier before she goes to bed. We know that she will love having a younger sibling!
Sophie's Favorite Things:
- Activities: To go up and down stairs while pointing and announcing "uh" (up) and "dnnn" (down).
- Place: Outside!
- Item of Clothing: Shoes! To go outside!
- Toys: Baby doll, toy cars, slide, books
- Belonging: Her green crocodile Croc style shoes. She wears them to bed every night and likes to push them around in her stroller during the day. We had to designate them as "house shoes" so that they don't get too dirty to wear under the covers!
More About Us
We have two Siberian cats, Ellie and Moose. Both are big, sweet balls of fluff.
We call Ellie the boss of the house. She is definitely the dominant cat, and the first to let us know that it's time for dinner. Ellie is quick to come up to new people to greet them, and often immediately jumps on their laps to provide cuddles. Another of Ellie's many nicknames is "laundry dragon" because she likes to sit on top of the clean laundry pile, guarding it from anyone who dares try to take an item to fold it. Ellie came to us after being fired from being a breeding cat because she was so busy cuddling with the humans that she didn't nurse her kittens. She has maintained that strong desire to bond and nuzzle her humans.
Moose is a quirky, sweet, laid back boy with a bit of a surfer dude vibe. He loves to lounge on the dining room table while keeping a close eye on the backyard birds. Much like Sophie, his favorite place to be is outside. Both of our cats live fully indoors, but Moose enjoys taking walks on a leash in the backyard. We even have a dog tie-out cable so he can sit outside enjoying his catnip plant while we eat dinner on the back porch.
We live in a four bedroom home on about 1/2 acre in a quiet, shaded neighborhood. Our suburb has a little bit of a country feel - some of the properties nearby have goats, horses, and cows. A number of the families in our neighborhood have small children and we are excited for our kids to have friends nearby to grow up with.
Our favorite feature of our home is our backyard. We have a large vegetable garden, an herb garden, a "pocket prairie" for pollinators, and plenty of grass for playing! Our seven backyard chickens also provide us plenty of eggs and endless entertainment.
Lifestyle and Values
As a family, we prioritize spending quality time together. We eat dinner together each night and love to play together. We are careful to put away our electronic devices when we are together so we can really focus on our shared experience.
We highly value education in all its forms. Books are available at child height in multiple rooms of our home, and we read together every day before nap and before bed.
Living sustainably is also important to us. Of course, this is an area where we are constantly learning and growing, but we try to do our part. Among other things, we recycle, compost, put food scraps to use by feeding them to the chickens, and try to minimize our consumption of single-use plastics.
As parents, our goal is to follow the concept of "help me help myself". We provide child size tools and make items like bibs, utensils, cleaning supplies, and outerwear easily available at child height. We like to incorporate Sophie in activities like cooking, gardening, collecting eggs from our chickens, and caring for our pets.
We appreciate Montessori philosophies and like to incorporate them in our parenting approach. When Camille was still working, we had Sophie in a Montessori nursery. We also hope to send our children to a local Montessori preschool when the time comes. That said, we are not perfect, nor are we purists. And none of this prevents us from having plenty of good old fashioned fun!
We love to spend time outdoors as a family. We hike, bike, and camp. We bought a used pop-up trailer last year in order to make camping a bit easier with littles, and we have been loving it! So far we have hit a few state parks and have a large extended family Big Bend National Park camping trip planned for the fall. We also enjoy spending time on Camille's parents' ski boat and the small fishing boat that Camille's dad hand-built.
Camille's great-grandparents owned a ranch and when they sold the ranch to the next generation, they carved off a portion for their descendants to use as a recreational property. We like to go there about once a year to hike, fish, boat, and waterski. Camille's parents and her aunt and uncle recently bought small summer homes in the lake town next door, making for a perfect jumping off point for all sorts of activities. Historically, Camille's family has also held extended family reunions here every summer with her grandfather's five siblings and all of their descendants. We aren't sure yet what that tradition will look like in the post-COVID world, but we at least plan to carry it on with Camille's parents and siblings.
Hobbies & Exploration
Camille's favorite hobby is gardening. She has a special interest in permaculture, native plants, pollinator friendly plants, edible perennials, and tomatoes. Alec thinks eleven tomato plants might just be a bit much for two adults and a toddler. Camille thinks you can never have too many tomato plants.
Alec enjoys recharging at home by working on and driving his vintage 1969 BMW 2002. (1969 being the year, 2002 being the model - it denotes 2 door/2 liter engine. Camille had to be educated on this fact. :) ) He likes to fly fish when we travel to places that are cold enough for trout. Alec also enjoys computer programming. He always has one or two special side projects that he likes to work on while listening to music.
We love experiencing new places, ideas, cultures, and foods. Sometimes this looks like traveling to another state or country. Other times it looks like exploring a new museum or restaurant closer to home.
When Camille was a teenager, she and her family lived in Israel for a year. From there, they were also able to visit Egypt and Kenya. As a couple, our relationship got its start during a study abroad in Belgium and the Czech Republic. And as adults, we have visited multiple European countries, Morocco, Thailand, Chile, Canada, Hawaii, and New York City. When we travel, our priority is to immerse ourselves as much as possible in the local culture. One of our favorite things to do is visit a local grocery store to pick up breakfast or lunch. It gives us a different perspective on what normal daily life can look like.
Our Families & Traditions
We moved to the same town as Camille's parents in order to raise our children near family. We live about five minutes from Camille's parents and about twenty minutes from Camille's sister. We generally get together as an extended family about once a week. Additionally, Sophie has a weekly sleepover at her grandparents' house. We think it is the highlight of the week for all three of them! Camille also has a half-brother who lives a few states away. We try to get together with his family a few times each year - Sophie and her cousins have a blast hanging out with each other!
Alec grew up with his parents and his younger brother. Alec's mom died of breast cancer in 2013. She provided a deep foundation of love and joy for his family, and we still mourn her loss. Alec's dad has since remarried and Alec's stepmom (or Ma-G as Sophie calls her) has brightened and expanded our family. They are a loving and adoring pair of grandparents, and we try to see them multiple times each year. Alec's brother and his wife are currently expecting a set of twins. We are so excited for our kids to have these two cousins right in between their ages!
We generally spend Thanksgiving with Alec's family and Christmas with Camille's family. This year we actually took over the Christmas hosting! Our Christmas celebration is very traditional. Christmas Eve dinner is our big holiday meal. Every year we have HoneyBaked ham, au-gratin potatoes, green bean casserole, and "FlyLady" baked beans. We also drive around to look at Christmas lights and watch a Christmas (or Ice Age!) movie. On Christmas morning, in addition to the wrapped gifts, each stocking has been stuffed with a piece of fruit, a chocolate orange, a Life Savers storybook, and a few chocolates.
Christmas has always included books at our house. When Camille was a kid, her mom always said that "Santa believes in reading," and Santa used to leave a wrapped book next to each stocking. However, when we went on a trip to Sweden a few years ago to explore Camille's family heritage, we learned of the Scandinavian tradition of the J?lbock (Christmas goat), a Christmas gift-bringer. We loved it, created our own J?lbock costume, and now the J?lbock hand-delivers a book to each person on Christmas morning.
Thanksgiving is a little bit more playful. We always have pie because Alec LOVES pie. However, we switch up our side dishes, switch up whose home we celebrate at, and enjoy having a variety of guests. This year, Alec's dad and stepmom are planning to host so the kids can enjoy some time in the pool!
We are so grateful to you for spending the time to get to know us. We look forward to getting to know you too. We would be deeply honored to be your child's parents, to raise them with love and joy, and to be by their side through life's obstacles.