On our first date, we met for coffee, but neither of us liked coffee at the time, so we got hot chocolate with marshmallows instead. Life together has been sweet ever since. We got married in Indianapolis on the four-year anniversary of that coffee date. We are both creative professionals in nerdy careers that we love. Joe grew up in Westfield, IN. Willie grew up in Jackson, MS, and moved to Indiana for graduate school about 15 years ago. We have an incredible community of family and friends in Indiana, Mississippi, and across the country who are very excited to support us as we welcome a child into our home.
About Joe by Willie
Joe is the most creative man I’ve ever met. I remember thinking on our first date, “If the zombie apocalypse ever comes, I want to be with Joe.” He comes up with big ideas, and he is so talented that he can usually make them into reality. Early in our relationship, we lived in two different states for work. Joe designed and built two identical dining room tables, so that we could have our video dinner dates from the same table.
I know that Joe will be an amazing father, because he is such a loving, caring, and adventurous person in all areas of his life. He loves to build pillow forts and play games. He is at his happiest spending quality time at home or with his friends and family. He is patient and understanding, and he makes everyone around him feel accepted and valued.
About Willie by Joe
I was first drawn to Willie by his smile and how handsome he is, but I really fell for him because of his honesty, always wanting to learn more, and our shared desire for deep connection. Willie has really fun relationships with our nieces and nephews and our friends’ kids. He volunteers to babysit often and does a really good job at it. Children love being around him and are naturally drawn to him. He understands their language and meets them where they’re at.
We love experiencing new things and going on adventures together. It is hard to explain how excited Willie gets when he tries something for the first time. After trying snorkeling for the first time a couple years ago, Willie talked about how fun it was for weeks! His joy is contagious and heartwarming. I cannot wait for the adventures we get to have with our child in the future!
Grizzly is a four-year old labradoodle. He is great with kids. He’s very careful with them when they are young. He loves going on long walks and playing in the backyard. Even though he’s really cute, he thinks of himself as something of a guard dog. He always alerts us (barks) to the presence of a postal worker or guest coming up the driveway.
Adoption has always been a part of our story. Both Joe and his older sister were adopted at birth, and Willie’s mom was raised by her grandparents. Joe’s family lives just a few miles north of us. His sister and her wife have two teenage kids who are active in school and athletics. Our best friends, more like family, are also just a couple of miles away. They have two kids as well. They all are excited to welcome a new baby into our family. Plus, we have a huge, diverse, extended group of friends with small children.
We have lived in our beautiful, half acre home for two years. We moved here from a downtown townhome to a suburb because we wanted more room and a quiet street. It has plenty of space for a growing family, including a big, fenced backyard; generous bedrooms; and a finished basement that we constructed ourselves. Our neighborhood has a lot of young families, and it is close to Joe’s family and many of our friends. We live in a diverse area with people from all walks of life. We are also within walking distance to parks and walking trails, and we walk Grizzly on a trail almost every day.
Joe and his sister were both adopted in closed adoptions. Though we understand why this was a choice made at the time, we are dedicated to having openness in our adoption. We understand first-hand the benefits for the child, birth parents, and adoptive parents. We would like a relationship with the birth family that allows our child to know them.
As parents, we want to work as a team to make sure our child feels loved. Every child is special, and we are excited to watch a child develop into themselves in front of us. We want to provide a loving, happy, stable home that can help our child grow up with everything they need.
Hot Chocolate for the First Snow: While we were having hot chocolate on our first date, it started snowing for the first time that fall. Because of this, we always share a cup of hot chocolate the day of the first snow of the season. Willie’s mom bought us special mugs to use, and we make sure we always have hot chocolate in the house.
Pride Party: We think birthdays are very special, and we always celebrate them together. However, we go all out for Joe’s birthday. It’s always around the LGBTQ+ Pride Parade in Indy, and we have huge house party. We decorate the house in rainbow and glitter, and we create fun games to play with our friends. It’s definitely one of the best days of our year.
Road Trip Traditions: We love singing in the car. Whether we are driving to go get groceries, or have a long road trip for vacation, we always sing in the car. We started making sing-along playlists when Joe moved to St. Louis, and we were together long-distance. These are often songs from Broadway musicals, or meaningful songs that were played at our wedding. We love to sing and we hope our future child does too!
We hope you enjoyed this brief look into our lives. We know that choosing adoption is not an easy decision, but it is a loving one. We appreciate the love and bravery you must possess. The child we adopt will have two adoptive dads, but you will always be the only mother. We will always respect your choice and honor your role in your child’s life story.
No updates at this time.