Caleb, Evelyn and Brady: To Russia with love - KFMB Stations - San Diego

Caleb, Evelyn and Brady: To Russia with love

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - They celebrated their first Thanksgiving as an official family this year and they did it in a brand new country. 

Siblings Caleb, Evelyn and Brady are now living in Russia with their new forever family. 

For Jennifer and Wendall it's the kind of life they always imagined they would have.

“It's amazingly rewarding, it really is. I'm living a lifestyle I've always dreamed I could have as a kid and never thought that I would, and it's amazing, it's awesome,” said Wendall.

It’s a life with stability and lots of love – all things Wendall says he grew up without.

“I had a really rough childhood and so I'm hoping to provide for these three the things that I never had,” explained Wendall.

Wendall and Jennifer said they always wanted to adopt, but planned to have biological children first. When that didn't happen, they didn't hesitate to move forward with adoption. 

“We weren't able to get pregnant for a little while and my mom was adopted through the county, so it just seemed like a natural transition,” said Jennifer.

Following in her grandmother's footsteps, the couple decided to open their home to more than just one child. 

“Originally we were like, okay we'll adopt one, but then we were like, we want more than one kid, and then if we do siblings, they'll have each other,” said Jennifer.

Eighteen months ago, they were matched with siblings Caleb and Evelyn and soon after learned they had a biological sibling. 

“We found out they had a baby brother in a different foster home and even though we were all about two, as soon as we heard about him, we were like okay,” continued Jennifer.

So they adopted all three: Brady is two, Evelyn is three and Caleb is four. And Caleb may only be four, but that’s old enough to explain what it means to be adopted.

“When I was in a different mommy's tummy, she couldn't take Care of me. So my mommy and daddy adopted me and will keep me forever,” Caleb said.

“I love these kids. I love them as if they were my own biological children so I can't describe it, it's just love,” Wendall said.

It's been quite a journey so far for Jennifer and Wendall, a former Marine. 

“It was very chaotic at first, especially for Jennifer, because at the time, I was serving in Afghanistan, when we first got them,” said Wendall.

And the family is already enjoying its next adventure. 

“We are going to be exposing them to a multitude of cultures with our travels,” Wendall added.

Wendall's government job has taken the family to Russia where they are now settling in, after spending one final Halloween in San Diego. 

“Every few years, we will be moving to a new country. Africa will be on our list and we will be going to Africa, and they will have a chance to see the culture their genetic heritage comes from,” Wendall said.

And to anyone who is thinking about adopting, they have this advice:

“I would say, do it. If you have even an inkling or a thought in your mind that you might want to do it, I say go all in and do it,” said Wendall.

If you are interested in adopting or becoming a foster family, please call 1-877-I-ADOPT-U.

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