PROVO — Two sisters are now formally part of the Brewer family after joining their mother and siblings in court to get their adoptions finalized.
Their adoptive father was there, too, part of the proceedings via Skype as his face peered back from a computer screen from his undisclosed military location. Lt. Col. Bruce Brewer and wife Cindy have six sons and three adopted daughters. Wednesday, the family grew by two more with the addition of Honesty, age 8, and Heavenly, age 6.
“They are wonderful young ladies,” Cindy Brewer told Judge Lynn W. Davis of 4th District Court. “I am very proud of them. They work hard, they try hard, they are loving, they're caring, and we just feel like they were always here. We feel like they belong with us as if they had always been with us.”
The couple brought the sisters into their home in March, but they have wanted them in their lives since years before.
“We had considered adopting four years ago or five years ago, and then the birth mom had decided she was going to keep them after all,” Cindy, 47, said. A phone call would change that when an adoption agency reached out to Cindy.
"The other families have backed out and they needed a home and did we know anyone?” she said she was asked.
She had a ready answer and the girls arrived at the Brewer household on Easter, several weeks before Bruce was deployed.
“Fortunately, I was able to bond with them,” Bruce Brewer, 50, told the court Wednesday. “When the girls came, they didn’t come with birth certificates, no shot records, no school records. And I spent all the time prior to my deployment with them, helping them get ready for school and being the best father that they ever had.”
He said he sends the girls cards and they have communicated through phone calls during his deployment.
“I feel they are very connected and know that they have a father that loves them very much,” he said.
The court approved the adoptions, and the girls and their other children rushed to the computer monitor to tell their father goodbye and blow him kisses.
For Davis, who has been on the bench for 27 years, the adoptions were a welcomed event.
“We had about 70 felony cases on our calendar this morning, so it’s wonderful to be involved in something positive, nurturing, lifting and loving like an adoption,” the judge said.
This was only the second time that Skype was used during an adoption hearing in his court, he said.
“It's obvious that these children are loved,” Davis said. “It was fun to see them blow kisses to their father half way around the world and say goodbye to him and indicate that they love him. If he were here, they would be embracing him. They would be on his lap, no question. “
After having six boys, Cindy Brewer said adopting five girls just felt right.
“I can’t explain that. There’s no logic behind it. We certainly had plenty to do, and we both work full time so it's not like we needed more kids,” she said, laughing. “We just knew there were girls out there for us and to find them and just kept at it until we did.”
Cindy said being a single parent while her husband is deployed can be difficult. “It’s intense. I’m pretty sleep-deprived these days,” she said. But that also allows her to be grateful for the support and help she receives from others.
Bruce Brewer is a chaplain and has been deployed for the past six months. He said he is anxious return home this winter.
“The first thing I’m going to do is give them big hugs and kisses and play, and so I want to be back and be part of their lives,” he said.
Contributing: Sam Penrod
Copyright 2016, Deseret News Publishing Company