Hello, we are Denise and Dave.
We hope to show you how much love we have as a family and how excited we are to share this bond with a second child. As parents, we admire the strength and courage it takes to consider an adoption plan and understand this decision is one made out of love.
We are grateful you are considering our family.
Our story started while attending college at Penn State University. During summer vacation, a chance meeting through mutual friends brought us together. Little did we know, this would be the beginning of a lasting love that continues to grow year after year. Our bond grew quickly as we discovered similar qualities we admired in each other such as kindness, thoughtfulness, ambition and generosity.
Now married for over 14 years, our love for each other has never been stronger. We continue to build on our solid foundation and consider ourselves equal partners in our relationship. Our friends and family would describe us as a fun loving, strong, compassionate couple who respect each other.
We have lived in Rhode Island for the last 16 years and absolutely love our town. It is a wonderful seaside community vibrant with activity for all seasons. We have a lovely state park on the ocean where we often picnic, ride bikes or walk along the beautiful paths. Living in New England provides never ending choices of activities. We especially enjoy exploring Boston, Providence and surrounding towns, walks on the beach, attending concerts, art shows, and local festivals.
We live in a four bedroom house on a quiet street in a neighborhood with lots of kiddos. Filling our home with even more love are our three animal family members. Penelope who is our lovable 13 year old beagle/hound mix and Zoey who is our friendly 6 year old cat. We also have Louie who is our 1 year old Beta fish that Zoey finds amusing.
We try to spend as much time as we can with our families who live in Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Florida and Georgia. Planned holidays and parties are fun, but we especially love when our family makes surprise visits to our house. We have amazing family role models, but we strive to emulate the relationships of both our grandparents and their longstanding wonderful marriages.
In March of 2004 we were blessed with our son Ethan. When he arrived we were over the moon with excitement. Ethan was a very happy baby and easy going. Shortly after he was born, we started to notice he was not meeting typical milestones. After further investigation, we found out he has Muscular Dystrophy. We were completely taken by surprise, but quickly learned as much as we could and investigated all the options available to help us provide him with the best care and a great life. The MD has left him without the ability to walk or talk, challenges he has met by mastering use of his motorized wheelchair and expressing himself exceptionally well using a computer to act as his voice. While some may consider caring for Ethan challenging, he has truly taught us the meaning of unconditional love, understanding and patience.
Ethan is just like any typical kid who enjoys life and having a good time. He’s a fun loving happy kid who is full of laughter, enjoys being silly and doing typical boy things, whether it be to see the Monster Truck Jam, Disney on Ice, Blue Man Group, Edaville Railroad or many of the other activities the New England area has to offer. He loves staying active and sometimes we have a hard time keeping up with him! Trains, fire trucks, music, swimming, and his weekly horseback riding are a few of his favorite interests. Mostly though, Ethan LOVES to go to the park and ride the swings. We also have a swing set in our back yard for when the mood strikes. One of our most favorite annual traditions we do with Ethan is when we drive back to Penn State for homecoming weekend. They have a fun parade, we have great tailgate parties and of course we love to cheer on Penn State football! We enjoy taking Ethan back to where we met, and he always enjoys it.
Our plan was to have more children and we always wanted Ethan to have a sibling. After trying naturally, then several IVF cycles, Denise finally got pregnant, but we lost the baby. We are strong believers things happen for a reason and it soon became clear adoption was the way our family was meant to be completed. We can’t wait to meet the little person who is destined to join our family and open up our loving home to him or her.
About Denise by Dave
Soon after I met Denise in college, I was sure she was the person I wanted spend the rest of my life with. She is fun, smart, and easy to get along with and always makes me feel special. I graduated a year before her and it was hard being apart, but we saw each other often and logged many miles on our cars in the process.
Denise has a degree in Early Childhood and Kindergarten/Elementary Education and had worked as a teacher before Ethan was born. She has an inherent love and respect for children that is very apparent and it is easy to understand why she chose this profession. Her favorite position was working as teacher/director of a Montessori school. It is a child centered educational approach, which exposes a child to meaningful learning experiences that develop self-respect, independence, respect for others and the skill of participating in group activities. Denise has taken these principals and incorporated them into how we parent our son and will carry them forward to our next child. After Ethan’s birth, Denise moved on to her next career, a stay at home mom, which she plans on continuing to do for our next child.
Denise comes from a large loving family in Pennsylvania which we enjoy spending lots of time with. It is easy to see where Denise gets her love for family and nurturing personality from. Ethan especially loves to spend time with his cousin Jimmy who enjoys showing him how to play with his favorite toys, games and videos. It is apparent through his relationship with Ethan, that Jimmy has learned patience, empathy and appreciates all of the abilities Ethan has. Ethan has that effect on many other kids which we feel will benefit our next child greatly. His spirit and achievements are truly inspiring and bring out the best in others.
I could not have asked for a better mother for our child. She truly makes our house a home and does so with kindness, selflessness and caring for her family. One of the fondest memories I have of her as a mother is watching her comfort Ethan when he wasn’t feeling well by repeating his favorite bedtime stories from memory. She had read to him so often that she memorized many of his favorite books. This is just one example of why any child would be lucky to have Denise as a mom.
Denise likes to keep busy and enjoys crafting, riding her bike, reading, relaxing at the beach or pool, party planning, entertaining and attending concerts and live shows. Lucky for us, Denise also enjoys baking and loves making creative cakes and treats for Ethan’s birthdays. One of my favorites was a party at the zoo which included animal cupcakes and creative zookeeper uniforms for his friends. Every year Denise gets more and more creative with birthday and holiday treats.
About Dave by Denise
For over 20 years, Dave has been an Electrical Engineer working as a civilian for the Navy. The job has provided stability for our family and allows for a great work/life balance. While working for the Navy, Dave earned his master’s degree in Electrical Engineering. He is very good at what he does, he is focused, reliable and is very well respected by his colleagues.
Dave enjoys many outdoor activities, whether it is golfing with friends on a Saturday morning or kayaking in the local water ways. He also loves hiking and enjoys going on trips with friends to Mt. Washington in New Hampshire. Although, he does love doing these activities, they pale in comparison to the amount of joy he has when he is with Ethan and I. I never knew it was possible to love Dave more than when we got married. However, when he became a dad my love for him grew more than I could imagine. Dave is the kindest, gentlest, most compassionate and sensitive person. He is a wonderful dad to Ethan and if you are looking for someone who will love, protect and nurture a child Dave is that person. He is a dad who cherishes the little moments and creates wonderful experiences for Ethan and me.
One day we saw a helicopter while picnicking near the ocean. All the way home from the picnic Ethan kept talking about the helicopter. Later that year for Ethan’s birthday, Dave arranged to take him on a helicopter ride. I am not sure who enjoyed it more but great memories were made that day. Although, helicopter rides are not something that can happen every day, Karaoke is something that happens every Friday night in our home. It is one of Ethan’s favorite activities to do on Fridays and it has become one of our family traditions. We look forward to sharing our traditions and creating new ones with our next child.
Dave and Ethan also play in an adaptive baseball league and have done so for many years. I know he is looking forward to continuing an active lifestyle with our next child. Every night when both Dave and I are tucking Ethan in bed we feel so much joy and we know in our hearts there is another child who we want to share our love and home with.
Dave’s thoughtful, caring nature makes him a wonderful husband. I will never forget shortly after we were married, we were talking about childhood memories and I mentioned I watched a certain children’s show and told him how much I loved the show. That following Christmas he had found a copy of the show on VHS (because that is how long ago the show was on) and gave it to me. It was one of the best Christmas gifts I ever got! This is who Dave is, a person who wants to make life special for our family. He has created a life that offers us so much love. With Dave as a parent, our next child will also know unconditional love and will always feel safe, protected and respected. I know this because I live it every day.
Thoughts on Parenting
We believe it is most important to instill feelings of love and respect in our children and the best way to do this is by our example. We feel it is essential for our children to know they are important and their thoughts and views be heard and not discounted. When a child knows they are respected by their parents they in turn will respect themselves and others.
Regarding education, we believe it is very important and our goal is to enable our child to develop a sense of curiosity and adventure through education. While we will certainly encourage our child to attend college, we recognize it is not for everyone. Our child’s decision will be supported no matter what path they choose.
Thoughts on Adoption
We want your child to be happy and excited to share their story about how they came to us through adoption. We know families created by adoption are extremely special and have a unique relationship and we are prepared to be open and honest about their unique story. We understand that you love this child and the decision to parent or not does not affect that love. We promise to keep an open relationship with you and provide you with as many updates and as much information as you feel comfortable with.
We are grateful you are considering our family, hopefully we have shown how much love we have to offer. If you would like to learn more about us or arrange an initial phone call we would love to talk with you. Please call Cindy (anytime) at A Loving Alternative (800) 556-5635.
Dave & Denise