Christopher & Marisa
Hello from Marisa & Christopher in Los Angeles!
Thank you for getting to know us. We are grateful for this experience and look forward to getting to know you. We understand that this is not an easy journey, but we admire your strength and courage to take this step. As you get to know us, you will learn that we are very close (we walk every morning together and we work together) and spend most of our time together, yet we see the world in unique and complementary ways.
We are excited to bring the new voice and new eyes of a child into our world. Your child will be raised in a home that is full of creativity, love and laughter with family and friends that will be a source of inspiration and strength as they grow.
Our Life Together: We met 11 years ago in San Francisco when Marisa was attending UC Berkeley and Christopher was working at Greenpeace. What began that night was a conversation about politics, art, family, and adventures and the kind of future we could create together. Three months later, Christopher proposed with a movie at an outdoor courtyard restaurant and that conversation has continued ever since.
We both started working right after high school and by the time we met in our 30s, we both made the decision to focus on our education. We now have Master’s degrees in areas that we believe strongly in, creative writing for Marisa, theology for Christopher and have carried these into our daily work at a non-profit organization that builds affordable housing for families in need.
Our life is financially secure, and we look forward to adopting a child, sharing our adventures, our love for learning, and our deep desire to make the world a better place for others.
Together, we have:
• Climbed to the top of Machu Picchu (In Marisa’s Mom’s home country in Peru)
• Danced with the Garifuna in Belize
• Camped overnight in a museum
• Swam in an underwater cave where the Mayan crystal princess lives
• Protested together on the streets of Los Angeles more times than we can count
You Might Be Surprised…
Marisa could survive on popcorn alone. She lived on the Galapagos Islands. She graduated from college at 35. Her nickname is Tookie. She’s writing a book about her Dad.
Christopher has over 10,000 comic books. He taught himself how to walk again after a car accident. He has been arrested 3 times for civil disobedience. He’s studied all of the world’s religions. His record for most movies at the theatre in a day is 4.
By Christopher: The first thing I notice about Marisa is her beautiful smile and thoughtful gaze. The next her brilliant mind, the way she gets to know you and connect with you with questions and stories. She is the smartest person I know, or have ever met.
Everyone wants to be Marisa’s friend, not only because she is fierce and loyal, but because she is helpful, an epic listener and takes cares of everyone she meets by helping them to become better versions of themselves. And then after a while, if you are lucky, you get to meet the goofy fun side of her, where simply being silly and absurd elicits a laugh that is bold and infectious.
I know the exact day and moment we truly fell in love- we went and saw a comedy and were the only ones laughing in the theater which just made us laugh louder and harder.
For all of the reasons above, she will be a great mom, one who not only sees the best in their child, but will always be pushing them to be better. She will be their best friend too. I have watched it as she has helped raise her nephew Marc Jr. She will be that mom that all the other children will want to go over and talk to and be around and learn from.
A Few of Marisa’s Favorites
• Childhood Activity: Climbing trees
• Children’s Book: Are You My Mother?
• Animal: Elephant
• Dessert: Red Velvet Cupcakes
• Children’s Movie: Wallace and Grommit
• Movie: What Dreams May Come
• Place to take a Child: Bike Riding
• Musical Artist: Prince
• Dream Fob: Writer
• Hobby: Writing
• Holiday: Birthday
• Vacation Spot: Florence, Italy
By Marisa: The first thing you will notice about Christopher is his beaming, blue eyes. The second thing you will notice is his gentle, calm spirit, which literally comes off his skin. Everyone loves him as soon as they meet him, because he cares deeply about people and will stand up for those that need help.
Very early on in our relationship, I knew that I wanted to raise a child with him. He is a kid at heart, and sees life in everything and wants to experience life to the fullest. Whether that’s thanking a tree for it’s beautiful leaves or convincing the entire family to stay up all night in the backyard snuggled under blankets to watch a meteor shower.
He is also the smartest person I know (even though he will tell you that I am) and thinks critically. This combination of instilling the importance of knowledge and information, in addition to experiencing the world in a playful manner, is what I hope our child will gain from having Christopher as their father.
A Few of Christopher’s Favorites
• Childhood Activity: Reading under a tree
• Children’s Book: The Velveteen Rabbit
• Animal: Raccoon
• Dessert: Lemon Meringue Pie
• Children’s TV Show: Mr. Rogers
• Movie: It’s A Wonderful Life
• Place to take a Child: The Library
• Musical Artist: The Eels
• Dream Fob: Artist
• Hobby: Drawing
• Holiday: Thanksgiving
• Vacation Spot: Mexico City
Our Loving Families & Our Faith
We have a small, tight knit family, that includes friends who we also consider family.
Christopher’s side of the family live in Northern California, which is about a 5 hour drive or a quick plane ride from our home. Christopher’s mother, Carol lives in the home he grew up in with his sister, her husband and their three children. Over the years, we often travel up north for Christopher’s favorite holiday, Thanksgiving, which traditionally is held next door to his mom’s at his favorite Aunt and Uncle’s home.
Marisa’s family lives in Simi Valley, the home she grew up in. You will find us there on the weekends swimming in the pool with Marisa’s mom and nephew.
Our family backgrounds are quite similar, in that we grew up very close to our parents and siblings.
Even though our immediate families are not right around the corner, we have a special bond that we’ve created and we try to extend that to our friends and community, whether that’s with a writing circle where our friends come over and share their art and work, or hosting political and community events in our home to get out and vote. Food is always at the center of these meetings with family and friends, either a feast that we make at home or at one of the great restaurants a short walk away.
Why Our Faith Matters: We hope to pass on to our child a sense of wonder about the world, the importance and uniqueness of every individual person we meet, and a sense of the ineffable. We hope to guide them with the answers we personally have found to the great questions about God and life, but also let them decide what that means to them.
Our Home & Closing Thoughts
A Place Called Home: We refer to our home as a perch in the middle of the city. We live in Silverlake, a neighborhood in the hills right above the famous Sunset Boulevard near Hollywood.
Our home is a combination of what the two of us need and love, a quiet refuge for Marisa to write and a short walk for Christopher to the bustling city. The first thing you will notice when you enter our home is our overflowing wall to wall book collection. We both are voracious readers and we both write—Christopher even published a story in a comic book! The second thing is you will hear music of all stripes, from Motown to punk to the gentle sounds of Billie Holiday. And last but certainly not least, you will meet the little queen of the house, our cat, Tigerlily. Early on she’s a little shy with strangers, but eventually becomes curious and will welcome you with a funny little sound.
On the weekends, we have so many choices for adventures since we live in the heart of Los Angeles. The beach is twenty minutes away, and chances to play in the snow are only an hour in the opposite direction. There are tons of hiking trails nearby that we love to explore and Disneyland an hour away is always beckoning. This doesn’t even include all of the bookstores, museums, concerts, and parks only minutes away.
Places We Love in our Community:
• We love our church, Agape because of the diverse community that loves God.
• Our favorite theatre is the Arclight in Hollywood. They have the best popcorn.
• Getting lost in bookstores and libraries.
• We love going to Dodger games because of the hot dogs and we get to cheer really loud with the rest of the fans.
• Our community has tons of great places to hike.
In Closing: Thank you again for considering us. We know that words and pictures can only go so far so we hope to meet you in person one day to hear your dreams and hopes for your child’s future. Our dream is to raise a child who will feel love and compassion and hold an understanding of the beauty of this world and the need to make it a better place.