Story of Us
We met while working with kids to make a puppet show in the fall of 2012. During that time, we suddenly started waking up to a very unexpected and sweet reality. We have many basic things in common but also have very different personalities and complement each other well. Together, we love cooking, hiking, going to music concerts and theatre, gardening, working on our home, and travelling to beaches and forests. On our first date, we both mentioned our individual desires to have a kid. We’ve had kids in our hearts and in our lives since day one. Both of us have chosen professional paths to work with and care for children. Both of us are drawn to kids wherever we go and kids seem drawn to us too. We now want to take that natural care for and enjoyment of kids to a different level, to parent a child. We have been together for 8 years, lived together for 5 years, owned a house together for 4 years, and been married for over 2 years. We have a sweet home, family, friends and community ready to welcome and love up a new kiddo, so much!
I grew up in Bismarck, North Dakota, with one older sister, a father who was a school administrator, and a mother who worked in the healthcare industry. Throughout my childhood, the importance of education, learning and the need to become connected to nature and the outdoors were instilled in my upbringing. I grew up fishing and “going exploring” outdoors or on my relatives’ farms. After graduating from North Dakota State University with a degree in Theatre and Art, I went on a trip around the United States performing puppet shows. I landed in Minneapolis where I continued my dream of being a working puppeteer and artist. I found and currently hold a permanent full-time job teaching art and nature alongside coordinating volunteers at Silverwood Park where I teach people of all ages and abilities from children to seniors and perform puppet shows every month with community members. I love being able to make art and find meaningful connections with the environment and others at work, especially enjoying working across differences. I moonlight making puppet shows that tour around the twin cities metro area, mostly to preschools and community centers, alongside spreading the enthusiasm for puppetry to others. In my spare time, I love to bike, garden, hike, cook with Bart, and hang out with people! I look forward to having a child and helping them find what they enjoy doing and helping to instill a love of education and the outdoors into their upbringing.
I grew up in Fairfield, Iowa as an oldest child with a brother and sister in a large extended farm family. My dad farmed with my grandfather and uncle. My mom was a stay at home mother and then became a nurse. We lived in a fun neighborhood, where everyone one was connected and always on each other’s porches. I also enjoyed spending time on my grandparent’s farm exploring the land. I loved school and was very active in music and theatre. In college, I studied English and Elementary Education and after graduating, became an elementary school teacher for a few years in Vermont and then Minneapolis. After moving to Minneapolis, I started coming out as an artist and decided I wanted to work with kids in a more creative way. I worked as an artist, educator and Education Director for In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre for 24 years. I am very passionate about puppetry, working with youth, my neighborhood, the arts and feel called to this vocation. I now work as an independent artist and the Executive Director of the Semilla Center for Healing and the Arts, just a block from where we live. I enjoy listening to and learning to play music, hiking, being in nature, writing, going to any beach, traveling and cooking with Seth, yoga, watching sci-fi and British tv shows, house projects, and hanging out with friends, nephews and neighborhood kids.
We own a 3-story house, a duplex, in South Minneapolis, near Powderhorn Park. We live in the 2nd and 3rd floors and rent out the 1st floor to our friend. Our house feels earthy, cozy, with lots of room and light. We have a great backyard for bonfires, cookouts, dinner parties, games, puppet shows, and gardening, a place we hope our future child can spend lots of time in all weather. We have a large vegetable garden where we grow food throughout the summer alongside having apple trees, grapes, blueberries, and, occasionally, edible mushrooms from logs in our yard. We also have 3 porches we like to hang out on and watch the world go by. Bart has an art studio in the attic, and Seth makes puppet shows in the basement. We take almost daily walks in the neighborhood to parks a few blocks away. We are also a few blocks from the Midtown Global Market, the American Swedish Institute, Children’s Hospital, several community gardens, bike shops, coffee shops, Mexican mercados, Somali markets, Native American businesses and centers, and the Midtown Greenway (an urban bike highway). We keep strong ties to our neighbors, sharing garden vegetables with each other and organizing summer events. Our block celebrates National Night Out in a big way. We consistently have a pinata, share delicious food like mole, and have art activities that all the neighbors share and get to know each other with.
We celebrate a change in the seasons in our home through holidays and a number of different traditions that we want to continue as a family:
- Pumpkin carving, making butternut squash soup, and dressing up to hand out candy to neighborhood kids on Halloween.
- Making paper snowflakes after Thanksgiving dinner
- Decorating our home with twinkly lights, paper snowflakes, and pine garlands in the winter, hanging Christmas ornaments on our Orange Tree.
- Visiting family in New Mexico and Iowa around the holidays.
- Lighting sparklers on New Year’s Eve
- Winter bonfires in our backyard
- Ice skating on nearby lakes
- Late winter/early spring trip to a small beach town in Mexico every other year.
- Planting flowers in our flower pots in May alongside planting our vegetable garden
- Working on the Annual May Day Parade in Minneapolis
- Burning the paper snowflakes from Thanksgiving at our first outdoor barbecue in the spring/summer
- Barbecues all summer long
- Swimming in lakes, hanging at the beach, and paddleboarding
- Co-hosting our annual summer block party with pinatas, water balloon fights, music and delicious Mexican food.
- Biking and walking around Minneapolis lakes
- Watching fireworks from our front porch in the summer with friends
- Time off in August and September to hike, explore the outdoors, work on house and art projects
Family, Friends, and Community
Our biological family lives in Iowa, New Mexico, and Massachusetts. We talk to our families several times a week and visit each other 1-3 times a year. Our chosen family includes our close friends mostly here in town with whom we share our birthdays, some holidays, our daily joys, worries, successes, failures, challenges, emergencies and hopes. We are also part of a unique community of artists and educators that we work and play with, and depend upon, in the Twin Cities. We are very involved in our neighborhood and our neighbors have been an important part of our community as well. Both of our work, professionally and personally, has been focused on growing relations in this diverse neighborhood using art, celebration and nature. Our community is open and accepting of so many things and enthusiastic and supportive for us to have a child. Our families, friends, and community will provide a myriad of experiences for our future child, like experiencing quinceaneras and powwows, experimental art and dance, loud and boisterous enthusiasm, good food, and community created parades, and festivals.
A Vision for our Family
We have always known that adoption would be part of our journey and a way our family will grow. We come from families that have loved us into becoming who we are now. As parents, we make these promises to our future children:
- Let them know how unconditionally loved and supported they are, very often, in direct, indirect and multiple ways.
- Follow where their needs and interests are, helping them discover what it is they enjoy, and supporting them in developing their own identity.
- Nurture their creative expression, whatever it may be.
- Instill a love of and appreciation for nature.
- Model an appreciation for community, empathy and service to others for our child.
- Promote fun and freedom while providing structure and boundaries.
- Expose them to different cultures, ways of thinking, and experiences.
- Model healthy relationships with each other, friends, and community as our child grows older.
for taking the time to get to know us.
We know that we want to grow our family through adoption. We want our child to know their heritage, background and adoption story. We want our child to view their adoption as something that makes them special. We would welcome you into our lives and are open to whatever relationship is healthy and comfortable for you, our child, and ourselves. We would love to get to know you more and talk with you.