Where do we start? There are no words to describe the amount of strength and grace it takes to walk the path of adoption. You must have a million questions about who we are as a family and about our story is.
We met through family in 1994 at a local coffee shop. Elena’s cousins will tell you of the day we met, “Jim called, and said he was in love.” We dated through college, and married on March 18, 2006 at La Purisima Church in Orange, California. We currently live in Newport Beach, California. We have a beautiful beach/park on the and we are in walking distance to Newport Beach pier, a movie theater, grocery store, and a local marina village (which has a fabulous Children’s Book Store).
While in college, Jim began a family business with his brothers (Majestic Pet Product) and Elena continued to work in the field of Education. Jim graduated from St. Edwards University in Austin, Texas. Elena graduated from Graduate school at Pacific Oaks College in Pasadena, Ca.
With a passion for business, Jim & his brothers continue to grow a successful business, which is thriving today and has expanded into Majestic Pet & Majestic Home. Elena worked in Education for 22 years, and currently works part-time at Majestic (a few hours a week while Hannah is in school), spending most of her time as a ‘full-time’ mom.
April 3, 2012, we were blessed with the birth of our daughter, Hannah Grace. She is an imaginative 5 1/2 year old who loves to play dress up, sing & dance! As parents, we describe her as “kind, funny, creative, and loving.”
Hannah started Kindergarten this year. As a family, we are loving every minute. We have her enrolled at an amazing school, which has a strong focus on academics, family & community.
Hannah enjoys spending time with her cousins and best friends she has made through school. She loves taking gymnastics, art class, and is wanting to start horse back riding lessons. Without a doubt, Hannah will be an amazing big sister.
In April 2015, Elena was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. With Family, Faith, and Friends, we battled Breast Cancer; and 2 1/2 years later are Cancer Free! Battling Cancer has made us stronger as a family in faith & love, and continue to appreciate life each & every day.
We are fortunate enough for Elena to be a stay-at-home mom, allowing her to participate in special school events and Hannah. In addition, this past spring we added a new furry member to our family – our puppy Rosie. We enjoy taking Rosie on walks, teaching her to play fetch, and learning proper puppy behavior. She is the perfect pup for our family. Hannah has been lucky enough to win a gold fish, “Goldie,” at the fair this past summer.
Our life is centered around what we can do together as a family. We like to paddle board around the Newport Bay, take trips to San Diego (visit New Children’s Museum), go to Disneyland, Bike Ride, spend time at the Beach or pool, visit family & friends in Texas, and go skiing with family in Colorado. Hannah & Elena like to have “Hannah & Mommy” Days where they go to the Santa Ana Zoo, Long Beach Aquarium, or stay at home and have a “pajama day.” We are always on the look-out for fun family events to participate in. On Friday nights we like to either walk or ride our bikes to dinner, our favorite part – dessert!
At home, we like to read bedtime stories & recite nursery rhymes; make forts out of blankets & chairs; work in the yard; play hide’n seek and board games; or make popcorn & watch a movie. As parents, we value the magic of childhood – belief in Santa Clause, The Easter Bunny, and The Tooth Fairy. We love to decorate our home for the holidays, with Hannah making her own decorations. Each year we look forward to visiting the pumpkin patch and riding the Christmas Train and every Easter, we decorate Eggs and go on a few Easter Egg Hunts.
Our love for family goes unmeasured. Our family is big! There is a lot of us, and it is awesome! Oh and our family is continuing to grow – with two nieces marrying over the next year, and one great niece due this November. Jim has 4 siblings and Elena has 2 siblings.
Elena grew up spending lots of time with her cousins, so her cousins are like her sisters. In total our extended family – Jim’s 26 family members, Elena’s 17 family members. There isn’t one day that doesn’t go by where we aren’t touching base or spending time with our family & friends. We have family in California, Texas, and Virginia, with most of our family living in California. We gather for holidays (Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, Halloween), birthdays, and Sunday BBQs. We support each other through difficult times and celebrate the everyday joys in life.
We were both raised in Catholic homes, and follow the Catholic faith. We hope that our day to day actions in all the we do teaches Hannah the Catholic faith as well.
As parents, we honor Hannah’s personality, provide her with opportunities to discover who she is. Through example we teach her to be kind & giving, to always try to understand others.
We will, along with Hannah, promise to love your child with all that we are and all that we have. We will appreciate your child’s spirit, provide a strong education, teach your child through all we do about family & friendship, faith, love, kindness, and courage, create an environment filled with laughter & joy, unwrap your child’s special gifts & talents, develop your child to his or her fullest potential.
We thank you for taking the time to read our story. We look forward to meeting you.
Elena, Jim and Hannah