HEATHER AND JARROD –
WHO ARE WE?
We are Jarrod, Heather and Jailyn, 2 1/2. We met at a Purdue college basketball game in 2008, fell in love quickly, and have been together ever since. Jarrod is an engineer who is handy around the house and enjoys watching TV shows like The Walking Dead, How I met Your Mother and almost anything on HGTV, and being outdoors. Heather is a stay-at-home mom and loves reading, napping (not often with a little one, ha!) playing the occasional video game and sunbathing. As a family we love being outdoors, grilling and hanging out in our backyard, going for bike rides around the neighborhood, and having spontaneous family dance parties in our living room!
WHAT HEATHER REALLY THINKS ABOUT JARROD
Oh my Jarrod. This man is everything to me. I never had to wonder if I could trust him with my heart, the answer was yes from day one. He loves me with a passion that is unmatched, it’s slightly more than the passion he feels watching those close Purdue basketball games. 😉 I can’t seem to keep him calm! I can’t tell you how many times I have to say “I know! I’m watching the same game as you!” When my second pregnancy resulted in the loss of our child and a subsequent hysterectomy, Jarrod was an amazing support to me. He was always willing to comfort me and hold me close. He never complained about picking up the “slack” around the house and the extra things he took on while I was recovering.
Watching him become a daddy has been one of the greatest blessings of my life. He has transformed from a man who had never held a baby to stepping up and changing her first diaper when she was a tiny 4.5 lb newborn. Admittedly, that little girl has him wrapped around her teeny tiny finger, but he totally owns it and would never let someone give him a hard time about it. He always thought 2 kids was plenty, but if you ask him now, he’ll tell you that he needs AT LEAST a basketball team! Jarrod is such a hands-on dad and loves teaching Jailyn new things. He loves encouraging her curiosity and will let her pull him around by his hand to show him the 100 different things we did that day.
WHAT JARROD REALLY THINKS ABOUT HEATHER
I have answered this so many times and every time it is different. What do I say? Her kindness, her compassion, her ability to be friends with anybody? Then someone asks me if anything is difficult about being married, or if Heather ever just gets on my nerves sometimes? The answer is yes and no. I love this woman with all of my being, so I tend to put up with her quirks. She totally owns it, which makes it hard to be annoyed! She sighs after she takes a long drink of water, she asks what’s for dinner tomorrow while eating tonight’s dinner, she gets sick EVERY YEAR during our anniversary. Okay, so maybe these are small things, and maybe allergies are to blame. But what do I really think about Heather? She has this incredible ability to connect with people. Anyone who spends 5 minutes with her can’t help but be friends with her. She is such an engaged mother with Jailyn and is so patient, creative and active with her. Some of her favorite things to do with Jailyn are taking her to the park, children’s museum or zoo and playing around the house with her play-doh or coloring.
Jailyn Renee is our 2.5 going on 16-year-old. She is so sassy and independent but is the sweetest, most motherly child. On any given day, we have to play with her babies and before bed make sure they’re tucked safely in their crib. If it’s warm, you’ll find this girl outside. She enjoys exploring around the yard and down by the pond. Jailyn is very sweet and well mannered, but goodness that girl has a stubborn streak! When she makes up her mind, she sticks to her guns. We wouldn’t change her stubbornness and desire to be independent for anything though because the sky is the limit. She’s going to be an amazing big sister as she loves fiercely. Whether it’s a child at school that is hurting or mommy stubbing her toe, other people’s pain becomes her own and she’ll just hold you and comfort you until it’s all better.
Something important to us as parents is: to make sure she knows why we say no. It’s also important to us to present a united front and back each other on the many challenges parenting presents.
Jarrod’s family all lives very close by. His parents live about 5 minutes away and his brother lives the town over. His grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins all live nearby too! We love all getting together to celebrate whatever the occasion might be! Jarrod’s mom and dad frequently take Jailyn on day-dates to the children’s museum or zoo or just to the playground. Heather’s family lives about 2 hours away. Her parents and brothers and sisters-in-law are still all very close. Jailyn loves going to visit them, which we do regularly. We have very frequent Facetime dates and she always has such a hard time choosing which uncle or grandma and grandpa she should call. She will very soon have a little cousin up there and she is so excited! We can’t seem to leave the store without “something for baby Sadie”.
We live in a quiet neighborhood near many attractions. Our house sits in a cul-de-sac where there are several families with young and teenage children. We’ll frequently take walks and bike rides around the neighborhood and we’ll always pass others out doing the same thing! Our back yard bumps up to a beautiful pond! We have a fully-fenced backyard that is a fun play area for the dog and Jailyn when we’re grilling or having a fire. On the other side of the fence we can go down to the pond and see the big fish and turtles! Jailyn loves to take little treats for the ducks, too! We have several parks nearby and it’s always so tough to decide which one to go to on a given day. We have a boxer, Malibu, and 2 cats, Oliver and Roe’n. The fur babies are so gentle with Jailyn and her friends when they come over for play dates.
When we first considered adoption, openness was a scary topic. We were never opposed to an open adoption, but we were ignorant. Through Adoptions of Indiana, we’ve learned so much and are so excited to have an open relationship. We see how important it is for this child to know how loved they are and where they came from.
- I was about 12 when I decided I wanted to be an engineer.
- I love to start projects around the house but never finish them…
- I am a die-hard Colts and Purdue fan.
- I don’t do heights. Even standing on a chair to change a light bulb makes me a bit uneasy.
- My favorite thing to do on vacation is eat the local food. If I can eat it near home, I won’t eat it while on vacation!
- I LOVE dogs. If Heather would let me I would get 5 more.
- I have had my only dance move nicknamed “The Jarrod”.
- My favorite candy is Swedish Fish, especially when they are just slightly stale.
- I prefer listening to audio-books when I’m alone in the car vs. music.
- I’m a total sucker for movies featuring over the top explosions and special effects.
- I absolutely love being a stay-at-home mom.
- I LOVE sports-playing, watching, and teaching.
- I HATE raccoons and am irrationally terrified!
- I love the Colts and Purdue!
- I hate cleaning the kitchen! I will happily scrub a toilet over the dishes any day!
- I love to mow the lawn; Jarrod has only done it a handful of times!
- I enjoy playing Xbox games with Jarrod and online with my brother and sister in law.
- I LOVE to be outside and will frequently wake up early on a Saturday morning and plan a day trip to be outside together.
- While on vacation, I would prefer to laze around the pool/beach and read a book. It drives Jarrod nuts!
- When Jailyn and I are home alone, 99% of the time you’ll find music blaring and a living room dance party.
- I have been swimming since I was 10 weeks old and still go to weekly swim lessons.
- I love to sing “Jesus Loves Me” as fast as I possibly can! Or “Brother John” or “Itsy Bitsy Spider”…whatever is in my head on a given day.
- I will pick a salad or corn or beans over sweets all day, every day!
- I can count to 10 in Spanish!
- I always “hide” when mommy or daddy gets home but I sometimes get tired of waiting and jump out in hopes of scaring them!