22 kids adopted by new families during San Joaquin County’s annual ‘Adoption Saturday’ celebration

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STOCKTON, Calif. (KTXL) -- For Javier Maravilla, Leslie Rodriguez and their family, the happiest place on earth Saturday wasn't Disney World, it was in a judge's chambers in a San Joaquin County courtroom.

"I’m going to approve the adoption and find that it is most definitely in the child's best interest," said the San Joaquin County judge. "Isaiah Luke Maravilla-Rodriguez is declared to be the child of Javier Maravilla and Leslie Rodriguez and it is further declared that Isaiah is a member of the Maravilla-Rodriguez family. Congratulations!"

Saturday was the day they officially became a family of four.

"Really happy that we can finally call him ours," said Rodriguez.

The couple began their adoption process in 2015 and were matched with Isaiah, who was in foster care in March of 2018. They said it was love at first sight.

"There was some kind of connection there that you felt you know. And I told Leslie and we both looked at each other in the eyes and we knew. We had this feeling inside, like this warm feeling inside that we knew, that he was the right child to come home," said Maravilla.

"He’s ours. Like right when we saw him, we knew he was ours," said Rodiguez.

Isaiah was just one of 22 kids adopted in 17 different families during San Joaquin County's 20th Annual 'Adoption Saturday' celebration.

"I adopted my nieces Donette and Arteya, so it’s been a long process but today it all paid off so I’m so happy," said Veronica Woods.

In 2019, parents are extra thankful that their forever families were made official just in time for the holidays.

"Much more to be thankful for this year because I have a different life now. I have two beautiful girls I need to raise, so yes it’s very special this year," said Woods.

"He's always been a part of our family. Our family has taken him and loved him and so, it’s just, we’re just looking forward to spend so many more holidays with him," said Rodriguez.

There are currently more than 1,400 children in foster care just in San Joaquin County still waiting for their forever families.

For more information on how you can become a foster parent visit: http://www.sjchsa.org/Assistance/Childrens-Services/The-Foster-Parent-Network

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