Joe and Lance are waiting to welcome a child into their heart and home through open adoption. Learn more about them!

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Hello – we are Joe and Lance

All things in life happen for a reason. We are only in our early 30s…but we both have had experiences in our life where we felt like fate sent us a curveball. Sometimes life is scary, uncomfortable, and things happen that you never would have planned for. However, sometimes life can hand you a gift, an opportunity or a blessing in a way that you never expected. We cannot imagine how you feel and what you are going through. We don’t know what led you to adoption — but can assure you that you will receive respect and absolutely no judgment from us. We are extremely open-minded and receptive to your wishes and comfort level. This is just the beginning of our conversation hopefully. Please take a look at our book and get to know us. Right now we are strangers, but hopefully you will see us as two nice guys who just want to be dads. It is our hope that we will all get to know each other more!

Hi! I’m Lance!

about-lanceI’m 32 years old and have lived in Chicago for 9 years. I’m from a small town in Illinois and moved to Chicago with two friends after college. I am a technical services manager and have been employed at my job for 8 years. My career is very flexible and I work in the same industry as my dad. I love baking, photography, music, DIY home projects and gardening. I can’t wait to start a garden with our child — like my grandfather did with me!

About Lance (From Joe)…

Lance will always be the best thing that ever happened to me. We are a lot alike — but still very different. One of the things he did was bring me out of my shell. He is such a strong-willed person. He is very intelligent, ambitious and responsible. Everything is better about my life since he’s been in it — from our beautiful home he has made to the strength he has given me to be myself. Lance is an amazing person and will be an amazing dad!

Hi! I’m Joe!

About JoeI am 31 years old and grew up in a small town outside of Illinois. After college, I moved to Chicago looking for new opportunities. Chicago has been my home for over 8 years. I work in human resources in downtown Chicago. I have worked with my employer for the past 6 years and feel lucky to work for a stable, family-friendly company. I love movies, reading, travel, politics and exploring my favorite neighborhoods in Chiago. I grew up playing guitar, drums, saxophone and piano. I can’t wait to teach our future child to play music like my father did with me!

About Joe (from Lance)…

I knew that Joe was the one for me early on. We clicked immediately and before long I couldn’t imagine my life without him. He has a passion for life, is kind, and hard working. He always tries to do right by those he holds dear and fiercely looks after his family and friends. He is an amazing partner — whether we are spending a weekend painting a fireplace or taking care of me when I’m sick. He loves to learn, talk, and is always planning our next weekend adventure around Chicago. He can’t wait until we have a child to join us!

Did someone say treat?

about-pierreThis is our little man, Pierre. He is a miniature dachshund and is 6 years old. Since the day we brought him home, he has made quite the impression on our friends and family. He loves kids, playing and will be a best buddy to our future son or daughter.

This is our tortoise shell cat, Birdie. She is 7 years old and such a curious creature. about-birdiePeople who meet her say she acts just like a dog. She is very loving, protective and sweet. She loves kids and has no problem making herself right at home.

Family

Lance was lucky to grow up with two families in one. lance-familyAlthough his parents divorced when he was small, his mother’s home was only one block away from the house that his father and stepmother lived in. Lance has an older brother and lots of cousins and friends that he enjoys catching up with on visits home. He remembers family dinners, holidays and spending time with his grandparents. He also has a niece and nephew who love coming to Chicago to see their uncles each summer.

Although Lance’s mother is an experienced grandmother, his dad and stepmom cannot wait to welcome their first grandchild when the time comes. They look forward to visits to the city to spoil their grandson or granddaughter! Lance’s father was adopted and he and Lance’s stepmother also took care of several nieces and nephews when they were young for long lengths of time. This has created a very adoption-positive environment full of love, patience, honesty and acceptance.

joe-familyJoe grew up in a small town in the Midwest 8 hours away from Chicago. His parents and two older sisters live in the area still. His sisters both have families with four kids. With eight nieces and nephews ranging from 17 to an infant, visits home are always busy and full of fun! He also has childhood friends who are like family to him. Although being so far away is tough, everyone keeps in touch with texts, phone calls, and Face Timing. For holidays and visits, family is only a quick plane ride away.

Joe’s first nephew was born when he was 14. Although he babysat neighbors and cousins before that, being an uncle was great dad training! Through the years he has seen babies turn into high schoolers and cherishes those memories as some of the best. He can’t wait to introduce a baby to their excited future cousins. He or she will have a waiting group of buddies to play with and look out for. Joe grew up very close to his cousins and wouldn’t have it any other way for his future son or daughter.

Friends

friendsOur family motto: If you have love in your heart, you are welcome in our home! We are truly blessed to have people in our lives that we’ve known our whole life, met in college and at work, and neighbors that have become friends. With our biological families living several hours away, our “Chicago Family” is what makes this city our home. All of us are in similar stages in our lives and we can’t wait to welcome new additions as we build our own family histories.

Home

homeWe own a two bedroom condo tucked in a quiet section of a popular north side Chicago neighborhood. We live in a historic building with lots of charm and backyard space. There are several families in our building who will make great “neighborhood” friends for our future child. We also live blocks away from a beautiful park with slides and a swing set. We love home-2living in a diverse neighborhood with people of all cultures. We frequently walk past the elementary school our child would go to. He or she would be lucky to go to a top-rated school with all types of people and families represented. We can’t wait to take our child for stroller rides with the dog and lazy weekend walks to the corner bakery for donuts. We are so fortunate to live in a city like Chicago where our child can have all the opportunities they can dream of. Whether he or she ends up loving the Cubs, museums, or bicycling along the lake, we can’t wait to make our future Chicagoan a lover of this city like their dads.

Travel

travelLance and Joe grew up taking family vacations around the Midwest. Love of travel continued as a couple. Together they traveled across the USA and 10 different countries. They’ve seen rainforests in Puerto Rico, walked rainy streets in Ireland, stood on top of the tallest building in Canada, and gazed at the Sistine Chapel in Italy to name a few! They can’t wait to give the gift of travel to their future child. They also look forward to vacations with friends and family. They love to experience different cultures and dream of raising their child as an open-minded citizen of the world.

Religion

faithRespect for all faiths is very important to Joe and Lance. They consider themselves to be liberal Christians and both grew up in Protestant Christian homes. Like a lot of people, religion became less of a priority in their teens and early 20s. As they got older and started to build their home together, they became involved in a local United Church of Christ and became members. The church does a lot for the community and those in need. Joe and Lance love their warm, inviting congregation. We look forward to raising our child in our diverse, forward-thinking church. Joe went on church mission trips as a kid and hopes to expose their child to similar experiences.

The roots of our family tree…

Lance and Joe met in 2009 as fresh college graduates, new to the city. It was love at first sight (as corny as that may sound). Two months into their relationship, Lance’s job transferred him to Louisville, KY. Suddenly the two small-town kids who loved the big city found themselves in a new southern town. Here, they built the foundation of their family and experienced the ups and downs of taking a chance on love. Good things come to those who wait and they were able to move back to Chicago after one year. They purchased a home together and after seven and a half years, they were married in June of 2016. What is missing is a dream that began so long ago in an old Kentucky apartment. Dreams of a home, a child and a family.

Why Adoption?

We cannot have biological children (insert joke here). We researched options like surrogacy, but it never felt right. We think of adoption as three streams flowing into the same river. Lance and Joe each come from different places. We have our previous paths and histories. So will our child…if we are honored with the blessing of the child that we want so dearly. It is all of us coming together to complete our family. A family we have dreamed of, planned for financially, spiritually and mentally, and waited for with an open heart.

-Joe and Lance

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If you’d like to learn more about Joe and Lance, contact us at 800-baby-mom or babymom@holtsunnyridge.org.