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Pre-Service Training… Check!

To become a Foster Parent through Utah Foster Care we had to complete the Resource Family Pre-Service Training. It included 48 hours of classes, 3 webinars, and 2 quizzes.  And today we graduated! We learned so much through these courses. They were so valuable. It’s hard to imagine why all parents or soon to be parents aren’t required to take them.

Feeling prepared!


Almost four years ago we began the process of adoption when we signed with Independent Adoption Center (IAC). We researched, had recommendations, and believed in their company. It was one of the largest adoption agencies in the country with 8 offices and 34 years of experience. This past January our lives were turned upside-down with an email from IAC. I still remember the moment I read the letter that explained “Independent Adoption Center (IAC) is declaring Chapter 7 bankruptcy and will be closing permanently effective immediately.” I was in shock! I was fine one second, laughing the next, and then came the monster tears. I’m so thankful I was with my friends who took care of me and called Dan to tell him what was happening.

The days, weeks, and months that followed were a mix of grief, hope, and planning. It was very cyclical. With all the emotions and advice, I was lost on where to pickup and what to try next. But, you know how you have that little voice inside you? Some people say it’s your gut, your intuition, your angels, or a message from a higher power. Well, whatever it is, it just kept resurfacing. We needed to become Foster Parents.

In February we met with a Foster-Adoptive Consultant and now our story continues. Dan and I have been attending classes, filling out paperwork, and preparing for our home study. In the next month or so we will be licensed Foster Parents and we couldn’t be more trilled!

Thank you to everyone who has followed us on this journey. Your support is something we honor and have cherished. We hope you will continue to follow us on this next chapter in life as we become Foster Parents.

Our Facebook page Dan and Alissa Adopt will be converted into our Foster to Adopt page. We’re hoping to share with you the things we are learning, things you might find helpful (so you can understand Foster Care just a little bit better), and fun bits about us, our story, and exciting moments from the littles that will enter our home.

Dan and I are absolute thrilled, scared, and hopeful for this…. Just like every soon to be parent!

Much love,


The Letter from IAC

To:       All Clients of the Independent Adoption Center

 From:  Marcia Hodges, Interim Executive Director

 Greg Kuhl, Board President

It is with deep sadness that we write to inform you that the Independent Adoption Center (IAC) is declaring Chapter 7 bankruptcy and will be closing permanently effective immediately.   This was an extremely difficult decision to make, but after much discussion, we have come to the conclusion that immediate closure is our only option.

As you may be aware, the climate of adoption has changed in recent years.  Societal changes have created an environment in the United States where there are fewer potential birth parents than at any other point in our 34-year history of helping to create families.   Simultaneously, due to changing demographics and the closure of international adoption programs, there are more hopeful adoptive parents seeking to adopt domestically than in any other time in recent history.

 The IAC has worked tirelessly to adapt to this changing environment, but the many efforts we implemented were ultimately unsuccessful.  We therefore cannot sustain the agency any longer.

We recognize that the decision to pursue adoption is deeply personal and that you chose to pursue adoption with the assistance of the IAC after careful consideration.  We remain honored that you trusted us to assist you in building your family, and we regret that the IAC was not able to maintain solvency in this new era of adoption.

The agency is filing for bankruptcy and the court will appoint a trustee to administer the bankruptcy estate.  The court will notify you of the case, shortly after the bankruptcy is filed and you will have the opportunity to file a Proof of Claim for any refunds you believe are due to you.  As everything will be under control of the trustee and the court, IAC will not be involved with determining how any remaining funds in the account are utilized.

A resource you may choose to contact is the Licensing office in your state.  Here is a list for that contact information by state:

*I’ve deleted the list they included* 

We cannot express in writing how sorry we are to be ending our relationship in this manner.  It is our most sincere hope that this set back in your adoption path is brief and that your wish to build your family through adoption is achieved in the near future.

18 months

Every Friday Dan and I have a little calendar event that pops up and says “Self Reflection!” I see the reminder and ponder to myself, how did I handle conflict this week, did I speak up for myself, was I able to show those around me that I love them, and did I make the world a better place. Yesterday I came home to a letter from our adoption agency and my heart ached a little. It was our “hey, it’s been 18 months and you still aren’t any closer to becoming parents” letter. I couldn’t even read past the first line which was some quote from an alumni trying to commiserate with how “awful” the wait is. Yes, it is awful, it’s sucks! And this has truly been the hardest thing we have ever done. For more than a year, every Friday I’d feel sorry for myself and my reflections spiraled out of context. I could feel my inner light flickering, and I realized I couldn’t let my fears and self-doubt change who I am, and what I’m still to become. 

So now, I reflect on this letter from IAC. I read past the commiseration to stand up to the knowledge that some brave soul is out there looking for us and we’re here with open hearts. Waiting to become a parent is hard, deciding to place a child is… shit, I can’t even imagine how difficult that could be. All I know is we don’t need to be rebranded, pay for a better spot on a page, get added to another website, or pay some ridiculous fee to get featured for 4 hours once a month. Dan and I are good people. We have loving families, the best of friends, a freaking amazing dog, and god, we have so much love to give. 

To the expecting mom out there who may stumbles upon our page. We’re down to earth people and realize family IS more than blood. There’s so much more to you than the child you carry, and there’s so much more to us than our required cookie-cutter-smiling-couple template you’ll scroll through. I know we’ll find each other someday and until then, Dan and I will continue to go on adventures and dream our dreams. Whoever you are, wherever you are, we’re here, we’ll wait for you, and we can’t wait to meet you someday.

With all my love and light,


Growing in Our Hearts

Baby Baird,
We’re not sure when we’ll meet, but there’s not a day that goes by that we don’t think of you. Although we haven’t met yet, you are so loved! As we wait for your arrival, you’ve been growing in our hearts and the hearts of everyone around us. Over the past few weeks, friends and family from all over the world have been sending us heart photos and messages just for you. We couldn’t include them all in this video for Instagram, but the full version will be uploaded to YouTube soon. Baby B, you are so loved and we can’t wait to meet you someday.
Love, Your heart Mom (Alissa) & Dad (Dan) #danandalissaadopt#waitingfamily #hopingtoadopt #growinginourhearts

Waiting for baby

notebookWe’ve been paper pregnant for 10 months. Just check out how big our home study / adoption notebook is growing! Every step of the way we’ve learned so much about adoption, parenting, and patience. Everyone always talks about how you’re never really ready to become a parent. Maybe I’ll feel differently when we’ve matched and we have a little one on the way, but frankly I think we’ve never felt more ready to become parents! Every day we wait and hope. ‪#‎hopingtoadopt‬ ‪#‎danandalissaadopt‬ ‪#‎adoption‬‪#‎openadoption‬ ‪#‎lovemakesafamily‬