ROUND ROCK, Texas -- A Central Texas family is counting its blessings this Thanksgiving as it celebrates the love that's brought them all together.
Inside their Round Rock house, the kitchen is filled with laughter and love. Home for the holidays holds special meaning for the Bellows.
“I was never able to have children of my own, so we started looking at foster care,” said Eric Bellows.
When he and his wife Connie first met, she had three children, but the couple wanted more.
“We started out really only wanting to adopt one child,” Connie said.
Fast forward eight years and siblings Gavin and Chloe, along with sisters Sabrina, Brianna and Leia, are now all part of the family.
“It's fun because there's, like, nothing you can't do with a family,” Brianna said.
Connie's daughter Fawn was 17 when they began fostering and adopting her brother and sisters.
“I don't know what it would be like without them,” she said. “Seeing their faces on Christmas and [seeing] stuff that you know they may have not had if they were not with us.”
Chloe, 15, remembers when she was first placed in the Bellows home at age seven.
“The second time I went back with my birth mother, I left. I remember being packed in a trash bag, all my stuff being packed in a trash bag,” Chloe said.
Project Case Care was started three years ago. The organization provides each child a suitcase filled with two changes of clothes, a pair of pajamas, socks, underwear, a pillow and a blanket, a teddy bear, and an age-appropriate bible.
“Most children go into foster care with nothing,” Chloe said, choking back tears.
The past has left these children with unhappy memories they hold close to their heart. But each day of love and laughter creates new and better memories. It's the glue that bonds this family together.
“Family is defined by people who are there for each other through thick and thin no matter what,” Connie said.
“It's a blessing, that's all I can say,” Eric said. “I mean I'm blessed, I know that.”
For more information on Project Care Case click here. You can also call (512) 852-9276 or (941) 681-1038.