Whitney and Ross
Although we arenâ€™t new to adoption (Libby and her birth parents taught us the ropes!) we know that each situation is different and we will absolutely honor the feelings of fear, unease and hopefully some excitement that you may be feeling. Above all, weâ€™re committed to maintaining a relationship with you, we want your child to know his/her history, and that you made a loving decision. After all, itâ€™s your story. We are counting down the days until we have an extra helper when we are building forts in the living room, or another child to join our kitchen dance parties. We look forward to speaking withyou, learning about your life and the life youâ€™re dreaming of for your child.
Here is our story
We met 10 years ago through mutual friends. We had a short conversation which included some sassiness and clever comebacks and we were both smitten. A few months into the relationship we took a leap, quit our jobs and both signed up to volunteer in Kenya for 6 months. We thought that if we found our way through that adventure weâ€™d have a good start. Since then weâ€™ve continued to travel quite extensively. We have lived in various places outside of Utah, and eventually decided that Utah was the place we wanted to start our family. Weâ€™ve settled into our careers and our community. Two years ago we adopted our daughter, Libby. During this time one of the main questions her birth mom asked us, is if we would be adopting again, she wanted a sibling for Libby and so do we!
Let me tell you about Ross, by Whitney
Ross has an ease about him that makes you feel comfortable and understood. He is generous, witty, and above all he is devoted to his family. Ross is always someone Iâ€™ve depended on and we make an incredible team. Before we adopted Libby my friends would always say â€œRoss is going to be the best Dad.â€ This conversation usually took place at a casual BBQ where we were all standing around watching Ross give piggyback rides, or tie kids clothing in knots so that they couldnâ€™t use their arms. The kids would all be laughing and jumping on him and yelling his name for their turn. I would always agree, but now seeing him with Libby, its next level sort of parenting. From the second he walks in the door its Ross yelling Libbyâ€™s name and wanting his one-on-one time with her. They have a routine which includes fort-building, singing made up versions of the â€œwheels on the busâ€ and Libby riding in the hiking backpack while Ross mows the lawn. When he puts her to sleep his lullaby repertoire includes Moonshadow by Cat Stevens, Hey Jude by the Beatles and various Johnny Cash tunes. When I try and include these songs in my bedtime routine, Libby quickly retoursâ€”â€thatâ€™s Dadaâ€™s song.â€ Clearly heâ€™s made an impact.
Want to know more?
- Ross once rode a real bull during an amateur rodeo and won. (We even have the goofy trophy to prove it!
- Ross developed a love of food and cooking while backpacking in Europe, he’s the chef in our house.
- Ross likes to work on projects at the house and is currently working on remodeling our attic.
- While in college during the summer breaks, Ross and 3 friends lived in a van on the West coast for 3 months at a time. Needless to say the van smelled pretty funky by the end of each summer.
- Ross had a pet turtle when he was a young boy. He named her Isabelle, after a ballet dancer he met who danced for the ballet in our town. (His parents both worked for the ballet when he was a young.) I am sure she was honored!
Let me tell you about Whitney, by Ross
I love nothing more than watching Whitney pour love and affection onto our daughter. I love the fact that Whitney squeezes every amount of joy that we can fit into our schedule. When I come home from work I am always excited to ask Libby and Whit what fun adventures they had that day. It usually includes playing at the park, going to the zoo, visiting local farms to look at animals, going to the childrenâ€™s museum or exploring the library. Libbyâ€™s new favorite song is â€œLet’s Go to the Library, the Library, the Libraryâ€. Whit has an amazing ability to teach Libby important lessons about life while making it fun for a kid. She has somehow made cleaning up the toys almost as fun as playing with them. I believe that much of Whitneyâ€™s incredible parenting ability comes from her profession and training as a social worker. She has such a caring heart that she works everyday to care for children that need help outside our own family. Adoption has become a huge part of Whitneyâ€™s life. She spends much of her spare time reading and researching adoption. She diligently works with local committees to educate about adoption and plan events for birthmothers.
Want to know more?
- In musical regards, Whitney has two favorite Bobâ€™s- Bob Marley and Bob Dylan.
- Whitneyâ€™s dad took she and her sister to get donuts every Sunday morning when they were kids. Then they would come home and read the comics together.
- After our wedding ceremony we rode away on a bike that we built for two! It was modeled after bikes we used in Kenya while volunteering called â€œboda bodaâ€™s.â€ Whitney looked beautiful riding side saddle in her wedding dress!
- You should see the moves Whitney lays down when a new season of â€œOrange is the New Blackâ€ comes out.
- I knew Whitney was the one for me when, while we were dating and looking for something to do, she suggested double dutch jump rope for a Friday night. Neither of us were as good as we had been in elementary school.
Things we like to do:
- SPEND TIME IN THE WILD: Utah is an amazing place for outdoor fun, there are plenty of places to go hiking, camping, biking, rock climbing and fishing
- TRAVEL: Together we have been to over twenty different countries. Whenever we travel we like to live within the different cultures, eat the local food and experience things outside our comfort zone. We are excited to continue to show our kids these amazing places that we have fallen in love with.
- PLAY WITH OUR DOG, VINNY: Vinny is our 9 month old Italian Mastiff. He is a big knucklehead who would never quit playing if we didnâ€™t eventually make him stop. He is also extremely gentle and protective of his little girl, Libby. He loves to get huge hugs from her and will even let her ride him around like a horse!
- Fridayâ€™s have been dubbed â€œFRIDAY FUNDAYâ€ which includes outings with Whitneyâ€™s sister, Adrianne, and her daughter, Aubrey, who is just seven months older than Libby. Activities have included the zoo, aquarium, and childrenâ€™s museum.
- SOCIALIZE: We have a big group of friends that we’ve been close to for many years. There are lots of kids and even a group of four who are all within months of Libbyâ€™s age. We also have friends who are currently pregnant and some that are currently working to adopt as well. It is so much fun to see all of the little rascals get together and enjoy life as only kids do.
Meet Libby, big sister to be!
Libby is a wicked smart two-year-old big sister to be who we teach to say things like â€œIâ€™m a cool catâ€ as well as “please” and “thank you.” Libby was adopted and we maintain contact with her birth parents via pictures, email and if they lived closer, visits. Libby is involved in swimming lessons, dance and searching for potato bugs in the backyard whenever she can. Even though she is still young we can already tell she has a huge heart. She makes sure that every night before she goes to bed she gives Mommy, Dada and her dog a huge hug and kiss (this includes anyone else at the house at bedtime). She already uses her newfound speaking skills to say â€œLibby is going to be a good big Sisterâ€.
5 things we will teach your child.
- That the world is big and broad and full of people with different ideas from our own. Itâ€™s our job to respect them.
- To be kind
- To listen to his/her own instincts and intuition
- To feel that he/she has the capacity to make an impact
- To always be curious
Home sweet home
We love living in the West. We both grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah. As teens we were determined to get out, (which we both did) and as adults have returned after we realized it has much to offer in the way of outdoor recreation, friendly folks and family. We live just minutes away from the mountains and a couple hours away from the beautiful red rock areas. Whitneyâ€™s Mom just moved 2 blocks away from us which makes walking to Grandmaâ€™s house a piece of cake. Our home is in a safe, quiet neighborhood with sidewalks, parks, streams and good schools. We live about 5 minutes away from downtown Salt Lake, which has matured into a spectacular city full of museums, festivals, theaters and events that we ride our bikes to. Most of the families that live nearby also have children, and we look forward to the annual 4th of July bike parade, Easter egg hunt and Oktoberfest that our neighborhood organizes. Most of the families around us are our same age and either have young kids or are planning to have some soon. We love our home in Utah and we plan to live in our same home until we are grandparents.
How we pay the bills
Whitney is a child therapist; she works 10 hours a week in her own private practice. Otherwise she is a stay at home parent with Libby. She enjoys the balance of staying home with Libby while still working with families to improve their relationships. She also volunteers for United for Adoption, providing community education about adoption, and organizing birthparent events.
Ross works as a construction project manager for a general contracting company. He works to build large construction projects. He spends most of his time staring at blueprints and figuring out how to make buildings stand up. Many of these projects can be seen while we drive through-out the city. His favorite part of work is when he gets to come home and see Libby and Whit.
What we want you to know
We believe in open adoption. We want you to see that your child is loved, safe and cared for. We want he/she to know their history. We are in a place in our life to provide a childhood that is stable, full of love and devotion. Parenting is our first priority and we take this responsibility very seriously. Libbyâ€™s birth parents entrusted us with an incredible duty to raise their child in a loving and courageous way. We are forever indebted to them for this opportunity and hope to provide the same experience for you.