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HOUSTON A mother was reunited with her kids who were found living in an abandoned school bus.

Sherrie Shorten has not seen her children in about a year and a half and she said the minute she saw them her heart nearly dropped.

I just ran over and hugged them, she said.

Shorten had not seen her 5-year-old son and 12-year-old daughter since December 2010. The children are still in the custody of Child Protective Services. They were able to visit with Shorten for two hours Friday.

The kids gave me this letter: Dear mom, we miss you very much, we are happy to see you. Chance wants to know if you will bring us donuts. We really want to go home with you, Shorten said.

The children knew both their parents were in jail for wire fraud.

They were just waiting for me to get out and get them, Shorten said.

While Shorten and her husband were locked up, the kids great aunt was caring for them.

A mail carrier discovered all of them were living in an abandoned school bus. Their meals were made in a makeshift building nearby.

The children were left alone up to 12 hours a day, while their great aunt was at work.

Shorten said she realizes all the wrong she has done and now she said she is ready to start all over again.

I m very pleased, happy with the way things went, she said. I just have to hold the emotion and put my nose in the grind stone and make this happen.

Shorten s husband is expected to be released from prison in July, but he may get out earlier because Shorten said his health is deteriorating.

The next CPS hearing is on May 2.

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