By Libby Smith
DENVER (CBS4) – The Adoption Exchange works hard to find homes that will take sibling groups, so brothers and sisters can grow up together. The Higgins family took in a sibling group of four to go with their own sibling group of four.
When it’s school time in the Higgins household, you’ll find Grandma giving spelling lessons, Dad working one-on-one on the computer, and books and workbooks spread across the kitchen table.
“I like it because we get more time with our parents. And we aren’t far away from them for like almost the whole day,” said 8-year-old Mylee.
Josh and Tammie teach their kids in every aspect of life, including how to expand your heart and your home to include those who need a helping hand.
LINK: The Adoption Exchange
“They loved the idea of adoption,” Josh said of his biological children.
“There’s definitely a sacrifice on their part, but I think, what they’re going to walk away from it with in the long run is going to way trump any of the negatives,” Tammie explained.
The Higgins have four children: Macee 14, Kaden 12, Lincoln 10, and Mylee 8. They adopted a sibling group of four children: Rudy 14, Ruby 12, Grace 10, Ruben 10. They doubled the size of their family in one-day.
“It’s good. I like how you can go to different people. You have more people to talk to,” Ruby told CBS4.
It was an overwhelming addition for all involved.
“Just like how there’s so many kids and Mom and Dad can’t just always be with you. They have to split their time up. I think that’s the hardest,” Macee replied when asked what is the hardest part of having so many new brothers and sisters.
Slowly the family has come together.
“They look like typical siblings. And certain days you get along with one person and different days you pick a different friend.” Tammie said with a laugh.
“We all get treated with the same love, but differently. I don’t get put to the highest standards like Macee does,” Ruby explained.
This family is a far cry from foster care.
“We would have to travel a ton of times to like a lot of houses and we would get separated a ton,” Grace said.
Having four kids of their own, Josh and Tammie thought they had a handle on parenting, but this, they say, put them to the test.
“You’re really truly learning how to parent all over again,” Josh said.
“It really makes you work on your own issues. If you struggle with anger, it really brings out whatever your own weaknesses are. It really brings them to the surface,” Tammie added.
Once you’ve worked through all of the challenges, you end up with kids who are thriving in a safe and nurturing environment.
“The kids that don’t have homes, they don’t know what it feels like to have one and how good it is, so I want to give them the feeling of how happy it is,” Mylee said.
Libby Smith is a Special Projects Producer at CBS4. If you have a story you’d like to tell CBS4 about, call 303-863-TIPS (8477) or visit the News Tips section.