Cem and Christie


Hi there!

We’re Cem (pronounced like “Gem” or “Jem”) and Christie, and we live with our two black lab rescue pups, Jack and Tux, in the San Francisco Bay Area. We’ve been together 15 years and make a great team!

Cem is often described as a Labrador puppy – silly, playful, curious, generous enthusiastic, full of love and affection, food-motivated, thrives with a lot of physical activity (daily pup walks, soccer, golf, skiing, weightlifting) but also loves a lazy afternoon, and is loving and loyal to his people. He is extremely sweet, kind, and emotionally intelligent. One of his greatest gifts is his ability to build meaningful connections and bridges between people (his name actually means “uniter” in Turkish). He is trilingual (English, Spanish, Turkish) and loves language – especially creating puns (he’s already great at dad jokes).

Christie is kind, empathetic, thoughtful, nurturing, playful, curious, resilient, intelligent, and radiates warmth. She is also a natural with kids, always open-arms to scoop up our nephew, goddaughter, and any of our friends’ kids when they’re around. Christie loves curling up together with our pups and a good book, doing home design projects, watching reality dating shows or cooking competitions, listening to music and podcasts, going for walks and doing Pilates, and making delicious food that she gets to share with friends and family (she’s an expert at crafting the perfect bite, loves tasty snacks, and has a special compartment in her stomach for ice cream).

We love to travel and spend as much time as possible with family and “framily” (friend family) on both the East and West coasts, as well as visiting Cem’s extended family in Turkey. We are always planning our next adventure to new places around the world and revisiting our favorite places (like Maui, Costa Rica, and South Africa). We love staying close to home just as much, exploring the SF Bay Area together, taking walks/hikes/having spontaneous dance parties with our pups, and hosting game nights with friends and neighbors.

We met in Washington, DC back in 2009 through a mutual friend, fell in love, and have wanted to grow our family through adoption for almost as long as we’ve been together. We joyfully married in 2015 at an outdoor wedding surrounded by our family and framily. In 2016, right before our one-year anniversary, Christie was diagnosed with breast cancer. We were shocked, scared, and forced to put our lives on hold as we navigated her care. Christie’s resilience, Cem’s loving caregiving, and support from our wonderful family, friends, and doctors got us through the hardest year of our lives – we’re now thankfully 8 years cancer-free! This experience made our love for each other even stronger, gave us a lifetime of perspective, and solidified our commitment to careers in health advocacy.

In 2020, we moved across the country to our current home in Marin County, CA. We live in an idyllic town nestled in tree-covered rolling hills just across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco, where we’re blessed to have close friends and wonderful neighbors, a diverse, engaged, and closely-knit community with great public schools, excellent healthcare, and endless opportunities to explore. Our house sits on a small hill at the end of a cul-de-sac that backs to protected open space where we regularly see and hear all kinds of wildlife. At night, you can see all the stars in the sky. The weather, seasons, scenery, and setting are truly perfect for us and sometimes it feels like a dream that we ended up here. We can’t wait to create a lifetime of new memories here as an expanded family.

Family is everything for us and we know the value of both biological and “found” family. Both of us have spent our lives surrounded by loving, supportive families with values and traditions that have helped shape us into who we are today. Our hope is that through open adoption, we’ll be able to realize our dream of growing our family with our child’s best interests at the center. We would love to travel for in-person visits so that our child has quality time with their birth family, as well as foster regular contact virtually. We look forward to cultivating a relationship with our child’s birth family founded on mutual kindness, respect, and appreciation that will provide the safety, love, and wholeness needed for our collective constellation to create new traditions, memories, and thrive together.

With love, Christie and Cem

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