BELTON — It was a day Kimberly and James Horton had been awaiting for a year and a half; the day CC and Raven would become a part of their family.
Kimberly Horton said when she woke up Thursday morning she felt “so many emotions.” It was the day she and her husband, James, would give their last name to CC, 15, and Raven, 12.
“I was full of butterflies, nervous, scared, excited,” she said. “I felt like I was going to take a test I had been waiting so long for.”
Two years ago, Kimberly and James Horton set out to be foster parents, never knowing they would fall in love with two girls who would become their daughters.
“I wanted to be a safe haven for children who were in the system,” Kimberly Horton said. “I didn’t set out to be an adoptive mom, but when I met these girls, I just knew they were meant to be mine. The decision was as simple as I fell in love with them the moment I met them.”
Horton said she can remember the day CC and Raven walked into their lives a year and a half ago.
“When CC walked in, it was the funniest thing,” she said. “(CC) said ‘this is what I like, this is what I don’t like.’ She is the sweetest, funniest, most loving person that I have ever met.”
Horton said Raven is “my firecracker.”
“She is so sweet,” she said. “Once you know Raven, she just blows your mind.”
James Horton said he told both girls from the beginning “you can be with us for as long as you want to be.”
“As soon as they came through our door they were our family,” he said. “The decision was easy, and I gained two daughters that are really deserving.”
The Hortons said the girls bring “so much adventure” to their family.
“They’re funny, easy-going; they love to dance and sing,” James Horton said. “They are so many things that make us love them. We instantly clicked with these girls.”
Gabby Thomas, the family’s adoption preparation worker, said the Hortons provided CC and Raven with “stability that they had never felt.”
“They both struggled with wanting to be adopted for a very long time,” she tearfully said. “This family gave them a sense of belonging and a place they wanted to stay forever. It’s been amazing to see their progress. I couldn’t have asked for a better family.”
CC said “it feels awesome” to finally be a part of the Horton family.
“We can do a lot of things as a family now,” she said. “We get their names and get to really be a part of the Horton family.”
Judge Charles Van Orden presided over the family’s adoption and said he has known the girls from working their cases.
“I have prayed for this day to come, literally prayed for this day that you would find this home, that you would find this family,” he said.
The family is looking forward to going on a Disney cruise next summer, their first vacation as a family.