Lauren & Charlie

Charlie Lauren Cover 02
Mom Dad
First Names Lauren Charlie
Religion Italian, Irish, Polish Catholic (converted in 2016, otherwise born and raised Jewish. Still honors Jewish cultural traditions with his mother’s family)
Ethnic Background BA History and BSN Nursing Italian, Scots-Irish, Belarusian
Education/Degree Bachelors-Nurse BS Chemical Engineering
Profession Registered Nurse Chemical Engineer
Ages/Names of Children Eli, age 3.5, biological son

Our Story

Hi there,

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for coming this far on your journey and taking the time to learn more about us and our family. Our names are Charlie and Lauren, and we have a three-year-old son named Eli. While we may not know you personally yet, we know that this is an incredibly difficult and enormous decision you are facing. We hope this can help give you a sense of who we are as a family and as parents, and that we can get to know each other even better from here if you’d like. Adoption has been on our hearts for a long time as we’ve encountered the ups and downs of infertility struggles over the years. We know in our hearts that we have so much love yet to give, and we respect whatever decision feels right to you. We promise to honor your child’s story and welcome both of you into our lives with open arms.

As a couple, we have a solid foundation that began as friendship and naturally grew into something bigger over time. We are 34 and 32 years old and met in college at Rutgers University where we were friends for years before ever dating. We’ve been together for over a decade and have been married since 2015. Together we enjoy exploring places both new and old, especially hidden local gems around NJ. But more than anything, we just enjoy each other’s company, no matter the activity. Our similar sense of humor has also strengthened our bond. One of the first things we did together as a couple was watch The Office in its entirety because Lauren couldn’t believe Charlie had never seen it. To this day, our idea of a perfect night is still hanging out watching The Office together. Although, the greatest strength of our marriage has stemmed from the fact that we truly find joy in just being together. Activities we do enjoy together are spending time with our loved ones, making music, gardening, and cooking together.

Shortly after getting married, we wanted to start our family. A long road with infertility lead to our son, Eli, in 2018. Since then, we have had similar fertility struggles when trying to conceive more children. We have always dreamed of having a big family together, much like the kind we were both raised in. Adoption had always been part of the conversation for us from the start, and ultimately, we began to feel more and more like it was the path we were meant to take.

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Family Life

We both come from big families and are excited to add even more love to the mix! We each have two brothers and have both grown up knowing the joy of having close siblings. Most of our family is local, and those who are not still come to visit often. Lauren has a very close extended family as well, and many of her family traditions include her cousins who she sees frequently. For decades, Lauren’s extended family has gathered every December to make homemade pierogies for Christmas. It is a tradition that has existed as long as Lauren can remember and has been carried on through multiple generations. Then we all gather again Christmas Eve night, and we eat the pierogies together, surrounded by love, family, and music played by the family band. It is the most special night of the year for us, and just one example of our family’s many traditions.

We are raising our son Catholic, but we will honor his choice to explore and choose any religion or spirituality he feels most aligned with has he grows older.

As a family, we value love and communication above all else.

Respecting one another to always have the conversation, even if it may feel challenging. Loving each other deeply enough so that we know, no matter how difficult the conversation, you are going to be received with love and support. This is something we promise to instill and practice with your child as well. As parents, we have tried to create an environment where our children can feel comfortable enough to always be honest with us, while also secure enough in knowing our love for them is unconditional. We also value laughter and trying to find the joy in everyday moments. We promise we will raise your child with the same values and surround them with unconditional love.

We are huge on traditions and celebrations. Our favorite time of year is the fall, by a landslide. All our birthdays and our wedding anniversary fall between October and November, so the season feels like one continuous celebration. Every year we go all out visiting farms and apple picking, painting pumpkins, dressing up for Halloween, and just enjoying the season while it lasts. But the love doesn’t end with just the fall. We have beloved traditions for every season, and truly look forward to the special, unique joy each season has to offer. Whether it’s celebrating St Patrick’s Day by making corned beef and cabbage and Guinness beef stew in early spring, going out to our favorite fish fry and tending our garden in the summer, or celebrating the holidays in the winter, each season comes with its own special tradition we’ve created and continue to enjoy throughout the years. We also have a cat and a dog. George is our 9-year-old pup and Martha is our 8-year-old cat. Both were rescued from our local rescue shelter.  (Fun fact: Lauren’s brother’s cat is Martha’s brother; they rescued the sibling cats together.)

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We live in central NJ and are blessed to be close to many of our loved ones within the state. Charlie’s parents are under and hour away, and Lauren’s parents and brother are under 10 minutes! Living so close to family has been our biggest blessing, especially when raising a family. Our son sees his grandparents and family frequently, and that strong family bond is fundamental to our parenting. Our parents are all so excited for this journey as well, and cannot wait to welcome another grandchild through adoption. As homeowners, we have enjoyed doing several projects around the house since we moved here in 2016. One of our favorite adventures has been building our own garden. The exterior garden walls are actually the same ones that Lauren’s grandfather built for her mom’s garden when Lauren was a girl, and it means the world that those same walls are now in her own family garden. Incorporating this piece of living family tradition is just one of the things we love about our yard, a place where our family gathers for BBQs and parties all year long. Another perk of our location in central NJ is our ability to take our children on great day trips to places like the beach or into the city (New York City or Philadelphia) because of how centrally located we are.

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We cannot begin to imagine the feelings you must be experiencing during this process, but we promise to always hold space and honor those feelings with you. We thank you for taking us into your consideration by reading our profile and welcome any questions to help you become more comfortable in your decision. As adoptive parents, we promise to dedicate our lives to loving your child unconditionally and ensuring that they always know where they came from and how deeply they are loved by you as well. We would love to honor an open adoption, if you desire, and keep in contact with emails, letters, sharing photos, and annual visits.

Diversity is something that is incredibly important to us, and we are comfortable with balancing and introducing different cultures to our family. Charlie was raised Jewish and converted to Catholicism as an adult, but we still celebrate and honor the Jewish family traditions his mother taught him growing up so our son can appreciate both sides of his heritage. We fully intend to do the same for your child too, as we believe every child should know and celebrate their family’s unique culture, heritage, and history, as well as learn about the beauty in different cultures too. We are thankful to live in an area with great diversity and access to several cultural experiences to learn from and explore.

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Mom Dad
Genre of Music So many I wouldn’t be able to choose, but I love music. Rock, jazz, showtunes, classical, acoustic… I love making different playlists for any kind of occasion. There is always music playing in our house. All music is beautiful and multifaceted! I love to rockout while I workout, and chillout with instrumental while we putz around the house. But nothing beats a good smooth-jazz-funk-pop fusion song that makes your body want to explode out of your skin with beaming positive energy.
Childhood memory Going to Disney World with my family, the excitement of planning the trip and then having so much fun with my parents and brothers while we’re there. It’s still something we enjoy doing together today. Summer vacation days at home with my brothers and best friend having super soaker fights, playing Sonic the Hedgehog, and going to TCBY.
Subject in school History Chemistry
TV show The Office and Parks and Recreation The Office and Parks and Recreation
Bedtime story I love the entire Ladybug Girl series Anything Dr Seuss! It’s like exercise for the imagination
Dessert Vanilla ice cream with rainbow sprinkles Mint chocolate chip ice cream
If your life was a theme song what would it be? “In My Life” The Beatles Original power rangers theme song. GO GO POWER RANGERS!! Apply that simple principle to everything in life, and you can reach your potential!
Coffee or Tea? Tea Coffee

Best Wishes

In conclusion, we’d like to leave you with our promises to you:

To honor an open adoption (if you desire) and ensure that your child always knows where they came from, starting with the unconditional love you have demonstrated from the start.

To love and accept your child for exactly who they are, never trying to mold them into something they are not. We promise to encourage and nurture their interests and talents and allow them to chase their dreams, whatever they may be.

To love unconditionally. To provide a family environment where love does not need to be earned and is given freely and abundantly without judgement. Through the good times and the bad. Where your child can feel safe, secure, and loved exactly as they are.

To cultivate joy. We promise to always look for the joy in life and share that joy with your child.

To cherish the laughter and joy in things both big and small.

To navigate the waters of life with your child. We promise to always be their biggest allies and to help them navigate whatever ups and downs may come so they know they always have our support and love to help weather any storm.

Thank you for learning more about us, and we are wishing you peace, support, and comfort with whatever decision feels best for you. It has been an honor to share our story with you.

With Love,
Lauren and Charlie

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