Walt Disney World brings laughter and smiles to children of all ages who go there on vacation. For one brother and sister, though, their vacation brought some unexpected tears—of adoption joy!
Back in April, Courtney and Tom Gilmour of Portland, Pennsylvania took their two foster children to the Magic Kingdom. Both 12-year-old Janielle and 10-year-old Elijah had been staying with the Gilmours for three years. The couple wanted to adopt the children, but the process often takes a long time to complete.
Just before the family left for Florida, however, the foster parents finally got the news they’d waited so long to hear. The court set a date for the official adoption. Courtney and Tom decided to surprise the kids with the news during their magical vacation.
After arriving at the theme park, Courtney picked up celebration buttons as part of the surprise. She took a photo and tagged Walt Disney World to announce the good news.
— Courtney Gilmour — Mask up! (@shewillrise81) April 11, 2017
It didn’t take long for Disney to jump in and offer to add a little extra magic to the family’s day. Officials arranged for the family to have a special meet and greet with the main mouse, himself: Mickey Mouse!
“I thought they were going to give us a free dessert,” Courtney told People Magazine.
Magic Kingdom cast members brought the family to Mickey Mouse’s character spot at Main Street U.S.A. Neither of the kids suspected a thing, since it was their first time at the park. And the surprise went off without a hitch! You might want to grab a tissue before watching this, though.
Yep, I’ve got a little pixie dust in my eye or something. Don’t you?
The surprise brought both children (and future adopted parents) to tears:
In case you missed it, the sign in the video read “Your adoption day will be May 24, 2017.”
A few weeks later, the family went to the courthouse to make the adoption legal.
The process took a long time, but the new parents have no complaints.
“Whatever hoops we had to jump through, we jumped through because Janielle and Elijah are worth it,” Courtney told People. “There was a lot of crying and laughing and screaming in those three years, but we got to the end goal. We got the happy ending.”