Gay Dad Life

Total Strangers Make This Adoptive Family's "Gotcha Day" Even More Special

Jamie and Bo were already having a great day. This past August 23rd, the couple were celebrating the day their two eldest sons, AJ and Val, first came to live with couple (affectionately known as "Gotcha Day") at Osaka Sushi in Coon Rapids, Minnesota. Little did they know that total strangers at the restaurant were about to make their celebration even more special.


"We were asked by the wait staff and the chef what we were celebrating," Jamie said. "We explained that today was our 'Gotcha Day' with our two oldest Sons. They were very excited for us."

Jamie and Bo celebrating "Gotcha Day" at Osaka Sushi with their four boys. (Faces blurred while adoption finalization still pending)

The couple appreciated the waitstaff's well wishes, but when they were presented with their bill, they also received a huge surprise. The family at the table next to them had overheard Jamie and Bo's conversation, and just happened to be celebrating their own 'Gotcha Day.' unbeknown to the family, these total strangers purchased a $50 gift card and asked the host to deliver it to the dads after they had left.

"We all had tears in our eyes and were very moved by such a wonderful gesture," Jamie said. "It made our day even more wonderful than it already was. We will never forget that day but the kindness shown by strangers meant more than words can express."

Their good luck wouldn't end there, however. The restaurant, also touched by the family's celebration, decided to give Jamie and Bo a permanent 20% discount at Osaka Sushi and Hibachi Steakhouse. "They said they know how expensive it can be raising kids and wanted to do something to help us an adoptive family," Jamie explained.

Jamie says that while he was incredibly touched by these gestures, he is also not entirely surprised, particularly coming from another adoptive family. "The adoption community has accepted us in ways we couldn't have imagined," he explained. "We truly feel blessed."

The couple adopted the younger two boys, Brandon and Juan, in December 2016. "The moment we Saw Brandon and Juan's photo was the moment we knew they were our kids," he said. Following their adoption, Jamie and Bo kept in regular touch with their children's birth family. "They have two younger brothers who were adopted last year by a wonderful family here in Minnesota," Jamie explained.

But over the past year, it soon became obvious that the older two sibling, AJ and Val, were also in need of a stable home. When they were approached about the possibility of reuniting the four brothers in a single home, Jamie and Bo didn't hesitate. "We said yes!" Jamie said. "We are now a family of 8 with Grandma and Grandpa."The couple live in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, which is a large suburb northwest of Minneapolis. "It's a diverse community and very accepting," Jamie said. "We have also met other gay families through Facebook groups that live in the same district. We have been very happy with our choice and actually have started to like suburban living!"

Congrats to this young family, and cheers to the multiple strangers who came together to make their "Gotcha Day" just a little bit more special.



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Gay Dad Life

Karamo Brown Co-Writes Children's Book with Son, Jason

The 'Queer Eye' star and his son named the story on a family mantra: You are Perfectly Designed

When his sons, Jason and Chris, were young, "Queer Eye" Star Karamo Brown repeated the same saying to them: "You are perfectly designed."

That mantra is now a Children's Book, cowritten by Karamo and his 22-year-old son, Jason, who used to come how and "say things like, 'I don't want to be me, I wish I was someone else, I wish I had a different life." As a parent, that "broke my heart," Karamo told Yahoo! Lifestyle. "I would say to him, 'You are blessed and you are perfect just the way you are,' as a reminder that you have been given so much and you should be appreciative and know that you're enough — I know that the world will try to tear you down, but if you can say to yourself, 'I am perfectly designed,' maybe it can quiet out some of those negative messages."

The illustrations, by Anoosha Syed, also make a point of displaying families of a variety of races and sexual orientations throughout the book.

Read more about Karamo's fascinating path to becoming a gay dad here, and then check out the video below that delves deeper into the inspiration behind "You Are Perfectly Designed," available on Amazon.



Gay Dad Life

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Are you intimidated by the suburbs? This gay dad was — but then he moved there.

In a recent article for Yahoo! Lifestyle, Steve Jacobs says the thought of living in the suburbs as a gay dad "intimidated" him. But when he started fantasizing about garages, he began to question that notion. Any apprehension he had soon evaporated, he said, one winter morning while trying to navigate the snowy streets of New York City with a stroller.

While "pushing the stroller through snow banks and pools of slush with snowflakes stinging our faces," he wrote, "a vision came to me: I pictured us walking into a garage, hopping into a car, and arriving at a diner with 10 times less drama. This image planted the seed of moving to the 'burbs that I couldn't shake."

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There were some "growing pains" while trying to make friends in this environment. "When we attended our first dinner party, within minutes the hostess went to the kitchen and the other wives followed her, while the husbands settled into the living room. Ira and I froze, looking at each other. In the city, our straight friends hadn't separated out like this for the evening. Should we stay with the dudes, exert our masculinity, and blow off the mom we liked? Or does one of us go with the wives and accept the personal branding that comes with that? We did a quick rock paper scissors in the foyer. Ira went with the wives."

But ultimately, "being a parent defined me more than I ever imagined it would," he wrote, and he settled in nicely to his new suburban life.

Have you had a similar adjustment, from city life to the suburbs? Tell us about it at dads@gayswithkids.com for an upcoming piece!

Gay Dad Life

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Guest post Tracey Wimperly

I've recently written a children's picture book (aimed at 2-4 year olds) called "Fridays with Fitz: Fitz Goes to the Pool." Every Friday - when his two dads go to work - Fitz and his grandparents (my husband, Steve and I) head off on an adventure. Through the eyes of a curious and energetic 3 year old, even ordinary adventures, like riding the bus or foraging for fungus in the forest can be fun and magical.

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"I think I was pretty naïve, I guess," chuckled Gene, one of the first single gay dads to work with Circle Surrogacy over 19 years ago. "I just had made a decision and went out and did it, and wasn't really thinking about how difficult it might be or what other people thought, being first at doing something."

So how did Gene hear about surrogacy as an option for single gay men? Well, it began with Gene flipping through a bar magazine. He recalls seeing an ad about a woman providing a service to connect gay men with lesbians in platonic co-parenting relationships. While he started down that path, working with the founder, Jennifer, he remembers thinking, "What if I meet someone? What if I want to move? It would create all these complications."

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Oh my gourd, it's fall! To celebrate, we rounded up 33 pics (and whole lot of pun-kins) in our annual fall photo essay!

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Thanks to these dads who shared their pics with us! Share your own to dads@gayswithkids.com and we'll add them to this post!

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Fatherhood, the gay way

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