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QUICK FACTS

Phone: http://temberdawn.wixsite.com/joshuaandseptember
Years together: married for 11, in love for 18
we live in: , Ontario
Our neighbourhood: Suburban
Other Children: two sons, one daughter and one spot for another baby girl
Pets: none; allergies :(

Hello!

Thank you for considering our profile!

We’re feeling a lot of the same things you probably are right now — nervous and a bit awkward. It’s a weird thing to be introducing ourselves in this way, and hard to truly convey how our family works, and how we came to this place of longing to adopt. I hope we’ve managed to provide you with a little glimpse into our hearts, and to capture some of the unconditional love we hope to one day share with you and your little one.

Our story starts when we were kids: Joshua and I grew up unknowingly attending the same Christian family camp. When we eventually met there as youth, it was love at first sight! Our first date was the camp banquet in 1999. Everyone joked then that we were destined to marry. When we finally did in June 2005, it was the most wonderful of celebrations! We’ve faced our share of heartache since then, but our marriage has been blessed by our supportive Christian community, and by our commitment to honour the vows we made to God and to each other, no matter what may come. We just celebrated our eleventh anniversary, and are more excited than ever to spend the rest of our lives loving and caring for one another.

As a couple, our priority is to honour Jesus with our lives. For the past eight years, we were able to serve Him as directors at the same youth camp where we met so long ago. Through that, we’ve had the opportunity to mentor many high school and college students in their walks with Jesus. We love sharing our faith in that way, but love even more the privilege of discipling our own dear children.

Adoption

I have wanted to be a mother all my life. When I was just 13, I began asking God to one day grant me four children. Joshua has also always dreamed of raising a large family. And so, we have planned our lives and home around this goal of one day being a family of six. We have four of everything — four beds, four sets of drawers, four beach towels and even four of each file in the filing cabinet!

God has already blessed us with three beautiful children. We loved our firstborn with everything that is in us, and yet our hearts grew with each child so that we could love them just as much. Although all of my pregnancies were difficult, we never stopped praying that God would keep growing our family.

We recently learned just what a miracle these three children are: I now know I have only had one ovary since I was nine. And, in the last year, have had to have my opposite fallopian tube removed. It is now physically impossible for us to conceive a fourth child. We see this as God opening the door for us to hopefully complete our family in an even richer way — by giving us the opportunity to adopt, and to raise your precious baby with all the same love we have lavished on our first three children.

September

September is genuinely the most wonderful human being I have ever met. She is radiantly captivated by the beauty of her Lord Jesus, and the fact that all three of our children have chosen to receive the gift of Jesus’s love and salvation is the deepest source of joy in her life.

September has wanted to be a full-time mom for forever, and although she completed both her undergrad and teachers’ college at the very top of her class, her primary goal was always to stay at home to raise our kids. Everyone who meets our children is amazed by their security, their creativity, and their self discipline. I attribute this to September’s parenting intuition, her commitment to attachment, and her ongoing dedication to putting their needs ahead of her own.

As a mom, September works hard to show our kids the beauty of God’s love for them — she has high standards for them, and believes in them with her whole heart; but still has real grace for them when they have done something wrong. We homeschool our kids, and as their teacher, September searches far and wide to find stories and pictures that expose them to the beauty of God’s creation.

As a homemaker, September applies her incredible discipline and artistic eye to creating a home that feels peaceful, neat, and beautifully simple. Almost every time I step through the door, I feel a sense of relief because the calm of our home is so tangible.

Finally, as my wife, September loves me with her whole heart — encouraging me to be the man I need to be, extending me grace when I fail, and continuing to be the beautiful soul that I was drawn to when we were teenagers.

Joshua

Joshua is the kind of husband and father everyone dreams of. He’s extremely attentive, and dedicates himself very specifically to serving me and the kids day after day. He works diligently at his job as an HR consultant to support our family, but is disciplined about leaving his work at work because he values relationships more than prestige.

When I was on bed rest during my pregnancies, he juggled his full-time job with all the cooking and cleaning, and still managed to find time at the end of the day to rub my feet and to enter into the hardship I was facing in being so sick. During my surgery last year, he slept in his clothes on the hospital bed beside me so that I didn’t have to spend a night alone, and took time off work to be close by during the difficult days that followed.

And even on the regular days, Joshua does all sorts of extra jobs to lighten my load. He meal plans, purchases groceries and runs errands during his lunch break at work. He kills all the spiders! And when the kids were babies, he changed diapers, bathed them, took them for walks in the baby carrier, and spent hours and hours patiently rocking them to sleep.

Joshua is a talented musician. He enjoys playing the guitar, and has written many songs for me and for the kids over the years. He also makes beautiful cards, and is really romantic and thoughtful in giving gifts. The girls I mentor always swoon over the stuff he makes me!

And, our children adore Joshua. They love to climb all over him when he is home, or watch him working on house renovation projects (he can do anything handy you can imagine!). His sensitivity provides our sons with the example they need to be conscientious and confident, and his tenderness provides our daughter with a deep, unshakeable sense of security and value. I am so grateful that my children get to have him as their daddy.

Our Family & Home

Our days are relatively rhythmic and calm. All of our first three kids like drawing, making up imaginary worlds, music and playing with Lego. Judah and Sae spend the bulk of their free time making exceptional cards and gifts for the people they love, and figuring out ways to help Thiessen join in on the fun. Thiessen is a bit more adventurous than the other two, but still tends to play things pretty safe. All three of them have keen memories and love to recount the details of meals we had or activities we did years ago. And, this past year, we were able to learn over thirty verses together as family! We find them all to be absolutely extraordinary in their own individual ways — in part because they are, and in part because that’s our role as parents… to understand them and to delight in exactly who they were made to be. And that is what we pray for them one by one each and every single night: “Father thank you for Judah/Sae/Thiessen. Thank you for making them exactly the way that they are. Thank you for the gift of getting to be their Mommy/Daddy. Thank you for the way they chose to obey today…”

We are blessed to be loved and cared for by some of the world’s most amazing people. My family is exceptionally proactive in supporting and encouraging one another, and we have several good friends with whom we have shared life since youth group. These people invest so much in our children, and their love gives them a deep sense of security and worth. They are also an integral support to Joshua and me when we need advice, need a shoulder to cry on, or simply need a good laugh.

We live in a small house right across from a park entrance. Our backyard is perfect: fully fenced, with a large tree for shade, a pea gravel area for digging, and a tire swing. Joshua & I both like to garden, and to keep our home organized and clean.

We try to live simply so that we can provide our kids with an unfettered, safe and healthy childhood. Our house reflects our very intentional values: providing them with lots of closeness, as well as space to learn, explore and play.

Completing our Family

I know that much of our life seems kind of idyllic as-is. But, somehow, we all long for one last sibling. Sae has been diligently praying for a little baby sister for years.

Judah, sweetly, wishes for a sister for Sae’s sake too. And Thiessen is practising being a big brother by wearing his stuffed bear in a baby carrier, and hushing him to sleep with soft little kisses! Whenever I get nervous about the details or the magnitude of this commitment, I think of them, and of the way God has been leading us for over twenty years, and the worries wash away in a flood of assurance that our family was always meant to include one more little girl.

As we await something that would bless us all so very much, we want you to know that we think that your decision is profoundly courageous — a true demonstration of love in a world where selfless love is all too rare.

We will be praying for you as you carefully consider what is best for you and your little one. And, we will pray for you beyond the decision period: that God will honour your choice, and guard your heart as you walk this lifelong road of sacrifice, heartache… and beautiful redemption.