GREGG/SMITH COUNTY (KLTV) - November is National Adoption Month. It's a month set aside to raise awareness about the adoption of children and youth from foster care. This year's theme: You don't have to be perfect to be a perfect parent.
All month long we will share with you stories of adoption and those who support the adoption process. Now, for some success stories in Gregg and Smith County.
"...that they are here after a forever family," said Justice Harriet O'Neill as she brought the gavel down.
On Adoption Day in Gregg County, Texas Supreme Court Justice O'Neill helped out with the special day. After the official ceremony, it was time for some fun.
It was the second adoption for Michelle and Ryan who already have three-year-old Bryce. Their newest addition is 16-month-old Brennan.
"I think we knew from the beginning that we wanted more than one child," said Michelle.
These parents say the boys were meant to be brothers. It was an emotional day as Brennan became officially part of this forever family.
"Words can't describe...it's a blessing," said Michelle.
Then, there was Lisa who was adding to her family with brothers Nick and Mack.
"We three biological children and now two adoptive children and two other foster children," said Lisa.
She says she and her husband felt called to serve.
"We used to be missionaries overseas in Africa and we came home and wanted to minister in some way and this was the best way to do it," said Lisa. "To effective and change lives on a daily basis."
While they are open to adopting more, fostering children is something they plan to continue for awhile.
"We will continue to foster because their is such a huge need and so many kids who need a good family," said Lisa.
"It really is a commitment and it's very special that this is a commitment of choice," said O'Neill. "That you've come together to make this relationship official."
In Smith County, lots of children found their forever family. Shelly and Charlie adopted little Alexzandria.
"We got Alexzandria when she was three days old," said Shelley.
They have been foster parents for 20 years and it was their fourth adoption. Both parents say the little girl's shining spirit moved them to add another to their large family.
"We had five birth children before we started any adoption," said Charlie. "So this will be number nine for us."
And, while the children have all found their forever families, there are still hundreds of children waiting for adoption or in need of foster care, looking for a family to show them the gift of love.
Children like the ones seen in these photos and right here in our gift of love segments. So, the question is, is your heart big enough for one more?
If you'd like more information about East Texas children available for adoption call our gift of love hotline, toll-free, 1-888-kids-275.
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