Shane & Jenn
Hello and Thank You!
We are Shane and Jenn. Since Jenn is a pediatrician, we understand how truly precious a child’s life is and what a miracle they are. We have been married for four years, and we have always considered adoption, but after four years of infertility treatments we realized that we were meant to adopt. We are a well-educated, stable, loving, caring couple that is ready to offer everything to your child. We feel our diverse backgrounds will give your child a broad and balanced life. We thank you for taking the time to learn a little bit more about us.
We both separately moved to the suburbs of Washington, DC seeking the culture and excitement of a big city with a small town feel. Trying to meet people and being open to new experiences, we met speed dating. It sounds strange, but you can learn a lot about a person in four minutes! Jenn was attracted to Shane for his humor and intelligence, and Shane was attracted to Jenn for her attractiveness, kindness, and intelligence. That was seven years ago, and as our relationship developed and we got to know each other better, a deep love and understanding developed. We married four years ago in a simple ceremony with all our friends and family.
We are in some ways very different people, but those differences make our relationship and our family stronger. For instance, our cultural backgrounds are quite different, but this allows us to offer your child a broader view of life and interactions with a wide variety of people. As another example, Shane is more introverted while Jenn is more outgoing. But Jenn brings out the social side of Shane. Even when he insists he doesn’t want to go out and would rather stay home, she convinces him to attend social activities that he finds he actually enjoys once he gets there. Jenn is also excellent at dealing with the day-to-day planning and organization of running a household, but sometimes she gets a bit mired in the details and fails to see the forest for the trees. In those moments Shane helps to ground her by helping her to look at the bigger picture. While Jenn is the planner, Shane is better at handling unexpected difficulties or crises when they arise. He stays calm in those stressful situations and manages to find a solution when you find yourself in a foreign country without luggage or a hotel reservation, or when you’re hiking in the desert and start to think you may have taken a wrong turn a few miles back.
Just For Fun
We enjoy traveling, both abroad and in the US, and we cannot wait to re-experience our favorite destinations through your child’s eyes and explore new places as a family. On some trips we hike through the desert landscape of the western US, on others we snorkel in crystal blue waters and explore Mayan ruins, and sometimes we find ourselves lost in a medieval European city.
We often attend musical performances and plays. We are fortunate to have the Kennedy Center so close to us, which allows us to see performances by the world’s greatest classical musicians and stage actors. But many of the community theater performances in the DC area are also quite good, and we attend those as well. Shane also plays the guitar and can’t wait to add a second member to the house band!
Sometimes we try a new activity just to see if we like it or not. About a year ago we took a flying lesson (Shane will never get in a tiny plane again), and recently we started ballroom dancing, which we both found we really enjoy!
A Little About Shane
Shane is one of the most amazing people I know. He grew up in very humble beginnings in rural Louisiana and became the first person in his family to go to college. Then not only did he receive his Bachelor’s degree but went onto graduate school and received his PhD! He is the type of person everyone imagines their father should be. He is not only knowledgeable about science but about everything. Ask him anything from an actor in a 70s sitcom, to a castle in Russia, to why the sky is blue and he usually knows the answer. But he is not all about knowledge. He is also hilariously funny; all of our friends enjoy his stories and jokes and discuss them for months afterward. He is honest to a fault and cannot lie, even about how I look in an outfit! But he would do anything and everything to protect his family and those he loves.
I was born in northern Louisiana, and lived there and in Texas before my family moved to Virginia when I was a teenager. I then spent 9 years at the University of Virginia obtaining my undergraduate and graduate degrees in physics. Although I loved academia and would have enjoyed being a physics professor, the thought of spending another decade or two as a postdoc before being able to do that scared me away to private industry. I currently work for a large government contractor as a senior software engineer.
Despite spending more than half my life in Virginia, I am still a Louisianan at heart and am excited to share with our child the unique culture of my home state. My parents were strict, but I am thankful for the strong values of honesty, hard work, and integrity that they instilled in me. Having come from a fairly poor family, I look forward to offering a child the opportunities that I wanted but couldn’t have growing up.
Jenn is by nature a very kind and caring person. She is truly concerned for the wellbeing of all living things. I see this in the way she worries about and genuinely cares about the health and lives of her patients, in the way she interacts with our two cats, and even in the way she lovingly cares for the plants and trees in our yard. She has a strong maternal instinct that is seen every day, and especially around children. If we are at a gathering where adults are talking in groups and children are present, she is usually the first to notice a child that is hungry or needs some attention, or a toddler who is about to teeter off his chair.
Jenn is also a very positive and optimistic person. Despite the difficulty of our infertility treatments, after each setback she would immediately start figuring out how to turn the negative situation into a positive one and move forward. While often serious, Jenn also has a lighthearted side and loves to host a good party. She is always trying to find a reason to gather people together, and is usually the person among our group of friends who organizes an outing.
I was born in a suburban university town in Delaware, where my parents still live, and lived my entire life there until finishing college. So I still have friends from preschool that I also went to college with! My parents were strict and instilled a strong work ethic but were always supportive and were there whenever my two siblings or I needed them. My family did not have a lot of money for vacations or activities, so we spent a lot of time just playing in the yard, going on shopping trips, or going to the library. After college I went to Philadelphia for medical school and then to New York for my residency. After spending several years living outside of New York City and enjoying every minute of it, I decided to move closer to my family and settled down in Northern Virginia, just outside of Washington, DC. I joined a private pediatric practice and, after a few years of hard work, I became partner in the practice – providing stability and security for the rest of my career. But while I am a dedicated pediatrician, I will be an even more dedicated mother! I plan to start working part-time in order to spend as much time as possible with the child who becomes a part of our life.
We live in an upper middle-class suburb of Washington, DC with superb neighbors who are always offering to help. They are so excited to babysit for us! The larger region that feeds into the local schools is very ethnically and socially diverse, which is one of the reasons we were drawn to this area. We can experience Ethiopian food, a major league baseball game, and the National Zoo (where there is a new baby panda!) all in one day. We are excited to share with your child the unique cultural and educational experiences that DC offers, such as preschool art classes at the National Gallery of Art, kid-friendly concerts at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and exhibits for children at the Smithsonian museums.
Our Loved Ones
Our Friends and Family
Our family and friends are extremely supportive of our decision to adopt and cannot wait for us to become parents. Jenn’s parents live close by in Delaware and are just waiting to babysit and spoil a new grandchild. Jenn’s sister lives in Boston with her husband and their two sons, who Jenn loves dearly. The boys are so excited about having cousins! Jenn’s brother and his fiancé live further away in Oregon, but we get together whenever possible. Jenn’s future sister-in-law is also a pediatrician!
Shane’s mother lives in Louisiana, while his father and three adult siblings (one sister and two brothers) live only a few hours away. Shane thinks his siblings will make great aunts and uncles. He is particularly excited to see his parents interact with our child since he feels they will make excellent grandparents.
We have many friends with children of all ages that we get together with as often as possible for parties, playgroups, and various activities. Of course, as a pediatrician, Jenn has contact with many families (many with adopted children), so we will have a wide network of children for play dates and parties!
Meet Tulum and Salem
Last year we rescued Tulum, a one year old gray tabby male, from our local animal shelter. (We named him after a town in Mexico where we like to travel.) After a couple of months we realized that Tulum needed more company, so we went back to the shelter and rescued Salem, a one year old black and white male. Now they are best buddies, and they love to romp around the house together! They are both very gentle (no scratches or bites) and always up for a game of catch-the-mouse or chase-the-laser-pointer. We know they will be excited to have a new playmate around the house!