Christian and Jenn
Hello and thank you for taking the time to read about us. We are Christian, Jenn, and Chloe – Americans currently living in Germany!
Dear Birthmother: As you consider the difficult decision of adoption, we understand the importance of finding a good family who will provide a caring, loving, and stable home for your child. Words cannot express the admiration and respect we have for the courageous and selfless choice you are contemplating. In the next few pages, we hope to give a good understanding of who we are – a happy, loving family. We hope to share that love with another child through adoption.
Family is very important to us and we’ve always wanted to have a family. After struggling for many years with infertility, our prayers were answered when we were chosen to be parents for our beautiful daughter, Chloe. We have many friends who have adopted, and Jenn’s family is made up of adopted aunts and adopted cousins. And now with Chloe, we know firsthand, the impact and wonderful experience adoption brings to a family.
How we Met: Christian remembers very clearly seeing Jenn for the first time. He was in the Caribbean training with the Dutch Royal Marines and she was on a scuba diving vacation with her mother. Christian first saw Jenn in the promenade of the hotel where they were staying; she was wearing a white sun dress and their eyes locked for a second. Christian turned away, a little embarrassed and overtaken with how beautiful she was. Christian later met a couple from Chicago who was diving with Jenn and encouraged him to e-mail her. Jenn was living and working in Switzerland at the time, but her work often brought her to Chicago, not far from where Christian lived. After a few months of writing, we finally had a first date and have been happily together ever since!
Our Life Together: We were married in 2009 in St. Lucia. Our first home was in Arlington, Virginia; Christian working at the Pentagon and Jenn working for a Certified Public Accountant, as well as volunteering at the elementary school as a reading tutor. In 2012, Christian’s job brought us to Southern California, in 2016, back to Virginia, and in 2019 to Germany, where we currently live. We live in a beautiful neighborhood not far from Stuttgart. We enjoy exercise, travel, scuba diving, time with family and friends.
Fun Facts About Us:
- Married in St. Lucia on a cliff overlooking the ocean
- We like to travel and go to an international destination each year
- Met in Curacao, in The Caribbean
- We enjoy spending quality time with friends and family; summer grilling, holidays, nature and animal parks
- We love animals – we have a dog rescued from Georgia; take annual trips to Alaska to view whales, bears, and bald eagles
A Little About Jenn
I grew up and graduated from high school in Silicon Valley, California. I was fortunate to live in the city, but also have the experience of the country, where my father and siblings lived. Growing up, I was a serious student. I loved playing the flute in jazz and marching band and played for over 10 years. I attended college at the University of Arkansas. Why Arkansas? Well, I wanted to earn my degree in International Relations, but realized there were so many places I had not yet experienced in my own country. Before I ventured beyond my own borders, I chose to become educated and live somewhere I had not yet been. This was the start to my passion for travel. As a part of my degree, I studied abroad to France where I had intensive language courses and studied French politics. I lived a few months in Alaska after graduating and helped my parents renovate their Bed & Breakfast. My career in Alternative Investments moved me to Switzerland, where I lived for nearly 10 years, until Christian and I were married. Returning to the US allowed me to change paths and follow a more creative profession. I’ve always had an interest in fashion and am now able to have my own business as a Personal Stylist. This allows me the flexibility to take care of my family and household and be there for all family events.
A Few Fun Facts About Jenn:
- Passion for photography – prefers to be behind the camera
- Listens to just about any kind of music
- Very patriotic – gets choked up any time the National Anthem is played
- Is handy – when something breaks, she is right there with tools in hand
- Loves to dress-up “girlie girl” but is equally comfortable in jeans and a t-shirt
- Favorite book(s) – anything written by Janet Evanovich
- Loves to bake and has taken cake/cupcake decorating classes
- Speaks English, German, Swiss German, and French
- US & Swiss citizen
- Lived in 5 states and 3 countries
A Little About Christian
I Grew up living in many states; graduated from high school in Germany; Degree in Finance and Philosophy from University of Notre Dame; Master’s Degree from the National Defense University; US Marine Officer for over 25 years.
I come from a military family. My mother and father met while my father was at the United States Military Academy (West Point). Growing up, I lived overseas twice, graduating high school in Germany. I later went to college in Indiana, then joined the Marines as an officer. I have been in the Marines for over 25 years now and it has been a wonderful career and life experience, including being able to travel the world and now, live in Germany while still serving our country. I am proud to serve my country on land and at sea in many corners of the world. The Marine Corps has been good to me, but the best thing that ever happened to me was Jenn and Chloe. I am excited about starting a new chapter for our growing family.
A Few Fun Facts About Christian:
- Used to work at White House marching in ceremonies and organizing and hosting social events
- Was the parade commander for the Marine Corps honor guard in Washington, D.C.
- Traveled to the Soviet Union and Russia in high school
- Has jumped out of an airplane
- Attended kindergarten and high school in Germany
- Won a bench press contest
- Strong passion for history
- Trained with foreign militaries in Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, Israel, and the Middle East
- Is an avid wine enthusiast
- Lived in 7 states and 3 countries
A Little About Chloe
At just four and half years of age, Chloe has lived in California, Virginia, and now Germany. She has visited a total of 12 states and 5 countries – including Hawaii, Alaska three times! Her days are filled with tumbling, music, or swimming, playdates, and attending German pre-school where she is learning to speak German.
Fun Facts About Chloe:
- Loves reading books
- Enjoys roller coasters!
- Goes to the zoo every chance she gets
- Favorite food: (just like every kid) a Happy Meal
- No slide is too big or too high
- Loves being outdoors
- Sings all the time
Our Neck of the Woods: We live in a nice rowhouse, nestled in a historic German town near Stuttgart, Germany. Decorated in a traditional style, we want everyone to feel welcome and comfortable. Our home and neighborhood have great schools and playgrounds within a short walking distance. We are close to our neighbors, all of whom have families of their own.
Living so close to many of Southern Germany’s most historic and beautiful spots, there are always fun activities in the villages or out in the country. Our favorite weekend activity includes preparing a farm fresh breakfast and then either going to the zoo, the local pool, or a weekend getaway in the Black Forest or neighboring country.
There are so many wonderful outdoor activities we are so excited to share as a family.
Things we Love to Do:
- Leisure pancake breakfasts followed by a stroll with Milo
- Hiking on the trails in the Black Forest
- Finding new secret gem restaurants
- Saturday Night – Pizza Night!
- Having friends and family over for BBQ
- Spending time with our neighbors
- Attending Marine Corps family events
- Family picnics
- Going to the zoo
- Planning our next travel destination
Introducing our Dog Milo: Milo adores naps, walks, reading with Chloe- he loves, loves, loves attention. He is extremely gentle and patient and intrigued by the neighborhood kids who equally adore him. Milo is very attentive and rarely barks – he is a wonderful companion.
Love Makes a Family
Christian’s parents are retired and live in Arizona and visit us often. They also travel frequently, visiting family and friends all over the United States. Christian’s sister lives with her husband and three sons in Chicago. Christian’s extended family live in New Jersey and Georgia.
Jenn’s mother and step-father live in Alaska, where they run a beautiful bed and breakfast. Her father lives in Kansas on a small farm with horses. She has two older brothers, one of whom works for an oil company in Northern Alaska; the other works as a firefighter, EMT, and wilderness guide. Her sister lives in Pennsylvania. Jenn’s extended family live in Southern California and Oregon.
Although our families live in many different states, we try to always celebrate holidays together with family. Our favorite place to go for the 4th of July is Alaska. Jenn’s family lives on a small island and this holiday is a huge community event. Celebrations and events start a week before and include games for kids, a parade (where her brother drives the fire engine), old logging show competition, fishing competition for kids and adults and the crowning of the 4th of July King and Queen. Everyone is out and knows everyone.
Christmas is typically at our house with our parents or in Alaska with Jenn’s family. We always go out for a nice dinner on Christmas Eve. This is a tradition both, Christian and Jenn, have had since they were very little. Christmas morning includes champagne and presents with a leisure dinner in the late afternoon. Being able to share these traditions will be the best gift ever!
Our Promise to Your Child:
• Will grow up loved and supported by a caring and committed family
- Will be encouraged to be the best he or she can be
- Will be given every opportunity to find, create, and follow their dreams
- Will be surrounded by music, nature, and travel
- Will be able to travel and learn from new experiences
- Will grow up in a fun, loving home
- Will have story time and family dinners
- Will be surrounded by friends and family
- Will be showered with love and attention
- Will know their adoptive story and it will be celebrated
A Special Message for You: Thank you again for taking the time to read about us. We understand the difficult decision you face and want you to make the best decision for you and your child. We hope that what we have shared here gives you a window into the type of people we are: a family who want nothing more than to share their love with another child. We believe that we are meant to care and love another child who is waiting for us. If this is your child, we will make sure he or she understands the precious gift you have given.
Thank You! Danke!