S: Paul & Laura
FC: Paul & Laura
2: Meet Laura & Paul | Laura Race/Background: Caucasian Height: 5'6" Build: Medium Hair: Brown (with some gray!) Eyes: Brown Complexion: Fair Birthday: January 10, 1983 Educational Background: Bachelors of Social Work Occupation: I stay at home, but volunteer when I can. I'm looking forward to being a stay at home mom. Description of Personality (by Paul): Laura is one of the most caring and intentional people I have ever met. She has a way of understanding so many different people and so many different situations. This is what made her such a great Youth Director at her previous job. She genuinely sees the best in everyone she meets, and Jesus shines through in everything she does. She loves to spend true quality time with people; simply sitting and talking or listening to what is going on in their lives. She would always rather go somewhere or do something fun instead of laying around when we have free time. She loves me better than anyone else does! Interests & Hobbies: My biggest hobby has got to be cooking. I get really excited about new cookbooks and new recipes. I also love spending time with friends - catching up and watching a good movie or a favorite television show.
3: Paul Race/Background: Caucasian Height: 5'6" Build: Medium Hair: Brown Eyes: Blue Complexion: Fair Birthday: August 15, 1981 Educational Background:Masters of Sport & Entertainment Management Occupation: Owns the family real estate business that his father began. Description of Personality (by Laura): Paul is the nicest guy you will ever meet. I've heard so many people say that about him. He genuinely knows how to love people - I'm convinced that this is because of his love for Jesus. He is incredibly loyal and makes lifelong friends. Paul has an awesome sense of humor. He knows how to laugh at himself and can find something worth laughing at in every situation. Paul loves being around children. He gets pumped for every opportunity we have to babysit our friends' kids. Paul is also a very hard worker. I know that it is so important to him that he provides for his family. He is going to be an amazing dad! Interests & Hobbies: I am a die-hard South Carolina Gamecock fan and never miss a football game if I can help it. I love watching sports movies, spending time with friends, and have quite a large collection of limited edition tennis shoes. | We tied the knot on May 29, 2010. | We attend a local Calvary Chapel church.
4: Dear Birth Parent, It's hard for us to put into words how much we appreciate, respect, and admire your decision to start an adoption plan for your baby. We have not been in your shoes, but we have been praying for you for quite some time. We know it cannot be an easy decision, but also understand the amount of love you must have for your child in order to be considering adoption through Bethany. Adoption, for us, has always been part of the plan for our family. When we first started talking about having children, we both already knew that the way that God would grow our family would include adoption. We are excited for the first child in our family to be adopted, so that we can tell him or her as they grow up just how faithful God was in bringing him or her to us. We hope to have a large family and have talked about adopting again later on down the road. Whether our children are adopted or biological, they will all grow up in a home where they always know the name and love of Jesus, where they feel loved, safe, and provided for. We are committed to providing the best life possible for them while also challenging them to be the best they can be. We want to give them every opportunity to grow into men and women who love Jesus, are kind, and serve those around them. We would love to share our story with you. We met several years ago, when Paul returned home from getting his Masters degree. He was looking for friends around his own age. Laura just happened to be living in the area, and through mutual friends, we were introduced. After a couple of years of seeing each other around town, Paul decided he should ask Laura on a date. We kind-of dated for a few weeks (there was never a "define the relationship" talk), before Laura got scared of Paul's awesomeness and called it off. After several months, Laura knew she had made a mistake - thankfully, Paul was willing to give it another go, and we have been together ever since! We know that what makes our marriage strong is our relationships with Jesus. Because we have experienced his forgiveness in our lives, we know how important it is to forgive each other. We also were fortunate to have a great friendship before we started dating. We have seen in our marriage how this helps us communicate and spend time together. We are 110-percent committed to each other and making our marriage last for the long haul. We know we have been blessed by God with such a great relationship, and do not want to take it for granted. We are husband and wife; but also truly best friends.
5: Our family right now consists of us and our dog, Mallie. Mallie is a great dog - loyal and lazy. She loves spending time with us, our family, and friends. She especially enjoys time with children, whether they are next-door neighbors, friends of the family, or new acquaintances. We are lucky to be very close (relationally and geographically) to a large part of our extended family. Most of Paul's family lives within a 10 minute drive. Paul works closely with his dad, as Paul has been taking over the family real estate business. Paul's brother and his family live a little bit further away, but their recent new addition of our niece, Brently, means that we see them quite a bit. We love our niece and can't wait for her to have a cousin! Laura's family lives a little further away, but we see them as often as we can. Laura's mom lives in the town where Laura grew up with her sister, Mary Beth. Laura's older sister, Allison, lives near the beach where she is a nurse. Laura's dad lives about four hours away and is a law-enforcement officer. Our child will be the first grandchild on Laura's side, and both of our families could not be more excited about our hope to adopt. Not only are we close with our families, we also have a tight group of friends that we consider family as well. Our children will grow up having mentors and friends encouraging them and teaching them about Jesus. Many of our friends have children and babies of all ages, and they are ready to help us learn to be good, faithful, parents. Another important aspect of our lives is the church we are attending. Laura worked at a church for several years as a youth director and recently left that position as we began to pursue adoption. Since then, we have found a new church family. We are excited that our new fellowship is culturally and racially diverse and already includes several adoptive families. In addition, our Pastor regularly addresses both biological and adoptive families in his sermon examples. We believe that this will be a healthy and accepting environment for our growing family, whatever we may look like. We hope you will consider us as part of your adoption plan. We will continue to pray each and every day that God will strengthen you and guide you. We also pray each day for the child that God has chosen to connect our story with a birth family's story. Love & Blessings to you, Paul & Laura
6: We started dating after some friends introduced us. Paul proposed while we were on vacation in Costa Rica with his family. It was perfect!
7: A football game at Paul's college. We won! | At a U2 concert. | Doing a little hiking! | ROADTRIP! | Dating & Engagement
8: We got married on May 29, 2010. It was a great day with our friends and family! There was BBQ for dinner, bocce ball, and a lot of dancing! | Our Wedding
9: We love just being together. We look forward to weekends that we can spend time catching up, being with family, and doing projects at home. We are really and truly best friends. | Our Relationship
10: Laura as a kiddo. Apparently, I've always loved pots & pans. I love to cook! | Eating crabs on vacation. Allison (sister), Paul, Laura, Mary Beth (sister), Peter (Mary's boyfriend), & Mom (Debi). We go somewhere fun on vacation with my mom each year. | Mary Beth's graduation. Allison, Mary Beth, Dad (Steve), Laura, Paul, & Mom. | Merry Christmas! Peter, Mary Beth, Mom, Allison, Laura, & Paul. Peter, Mary's boyfriend, is a big part of our family. He was adopted into his family. | Laura's Family
11: Walking down the aisle. With my dad right before Paul and I got married! | I have the sweetest grandparents! My Poppie is a retired pastor and Granny Alice is very loving. | The sisters with PopPop. My mom's dad has always been there for us and always makes us laugh. | Getting ready to go into Hogwarts! Our family LOVES Harry Potter! We got to go to Hogwarts at Universal Studios on vacation.
12: Paul as a baby. Paul (on the right) has a twin brother, Carter. They are fraternal twins. | Christmas Card. Sarah & Carter (Paul's brother & wife), Sandy & Bill (Paul's parents), and Paul & Laura. We tried taking this picture about 100 times for last year's Christmas card. | Paul's Parents - Sandy & Bill. We live about ten minutes away from Mom (Sandy) & Dad (Bill) in the same town where Paul grew up. | Visiting London. Paul's Aunt Kim, Paul, and Mom in London. Paul's parents love to travel! This was a special trip that Paul took with his mom and aunt several years ago. | Paul's Family
13: Our Niece. This is Carter & Sarah's little girl, Brently. We love spending time with her, and Laura babysits her often. Brently is excited to have a cousin! | My Granny. Paul's grandmother (father's side) lives 10 minutes from us and loves watching the Chicago Cubs on television. | The other half. Paul's twin, Carter, with his wife, Sarah, and Brently. Carter ministers to youth, and Sarah is an occupational therapist. They live 40 minutes away. | My Grandmommy & Granddaddy. Paul's grandparents (mom's side) live close by. They love camping, and every summer, the entire family gets together over the 4th of July for some time in the great outdoors. It's a tradition that spans more than 60 years - just like their marriage.
14: Our Home | We love our little house and our diverse neighborhood. We have a fenced-in backyard, complete with swing set! We are friends with our neighbors, and there are lots of kids right around us. They often come over to play with our dog, Mallie! Our next door neighbors adopted their son and are very excited for our family! | Paul making our first-ever fire in our fireplace! | Laura baking jam-cookies in our kitchen.
15: Mallie hanging out with our friend, Eliza. Mallie loves kids - especially because they sneak her treats. | Our dog, Mallie, is a big part of our lives. Mallie is about 8 years old. She loves her people and thinks she is a lap dog, even though she weighs about 60 lbs. We are definitely "dog people" and will always have a dog in our family. | Mallie
16: Our Friends are Praying for You! | Tailgating with friends at a football game. We get together with Paul's college friends and roommates for a game every year. | Naptime. Paul snoozin' with our friends', JT & Lisa, daughter, Maddie. Maddie was our flower girl and has a little sister, Adah. | Lifelong Buds. Laura with our very best friend, Amanda. Amanda is a HUGE part of our lives and Laura's old roommate.
17: Laura's very best friends: Hillary, Laura, Amanda, Sarah, Stephanie, Emily, Allison, & Mary Beth. | Our friend, Joe. Joe was friends with both of us individually before we knew each other! He's still one of our best friends. | Halloween Fun. Our good friends, Christy & Shannon, with their kids Supergirl (Esther), Spidergirl (Eliza), and Ninja (Zach). We spend time with this family each week!
18: Our YoungLife team. We work with these college students to share Christ with other local college students. | We feel incredibly blessed to live in the part of Virginia that we do. There are lots of fun activities to do locally. | Our first priority each week is the time we spend serving Jesus. We have recently joined a new church, and we love getting to know people there! There are several other families there who have adopted. Otherwise, we both lead Bible studies for local college students and volunteer with YoungLife. | Weekly Activities
19: Goofing Around | We like to laugh. And laugh at ourselves.
20: Laura Favorite Season: Fall Favorite Food: Finger Foods Favorite Store: Target Favorite Color: Yellow Favorite Movie: Enchanted Favorite Holiday: Christmas Favorite Music: Mumford & Sons Favorite Activity: Throwing the ball for Mallie | Paul Favorite Season: Winter Favorite Food: Thai fried rice Favorite Store: Rugged Wearhouse Favorite Color: Yellow Favorite Movie: Good Will Hunting Favorite Holiday: Christmas Favorite Music: Needtobreathe Favorite Activity: Watching his college's football team | Fun Facts