HARRIS COUNTY, Texas - A Harris County tradition drives home the true meaning of the holiday season: being thankful for family.
There are many days we visit family court and it's not always a happy place to be, but on Friday - it was a day of celebration.
Fifty children from the Houston area found their forever homes with loving, adoptive families. Fear and uncertainty was replaced with love and hope in the hearts of many of those present in the courtroom on Friday.
One of the children adopted was 8-year-old Brian. His new parents, Dennis and Gina Mikulin knew Brian was the missing piece of the puzzle - their only child, a boy who now completes their family.
"We made a connection right away and knew we wanted to have Brian as our son." said Gina.
"I think they'll be really good parents and I'm really happy to be with them." said Brian.
For another family, adoption is a labor of love. Parents, Candace and Robert adopted their fourth child on Friday.
"There are lots of kids out there, especially in Harris County even, just close by us that really need homes and they need families and they don't have them." said Candace.
A thousand more children in Harris County need homes and more than 6,000 statewide.
For Donett Walker, Friday was a reunion of sorts. Her son's children were in the system but Donett wanted to keep the family together so she adopted little Kianna and Demaree.
"There are so many kids who just need someone to be their advocate. To be the person who looks out for their best interest and thankfully, we were able to keep it in our family." she said.
The children adopted on Friday ranged from ages 14 months to 16 years old.
In Harris County, these mass November adoptions have been taking place for the last 15 years, it's a holiday tradition that offers another reason to give thanks.