Four-year-old Johnathon, 3-year-old Julian, and 15-month-old Brooklyn – burst onto the Hodgerson scene. Instant family meant mayhem at the beginning.

“We were trying to feed them, keep them alive, and off of each other,” Vanessa said.

“No, there's no book that will teach you how to parent three children, if you've never parented before,” Cory laughed.

The Hodgersons say they’ve been incredibly blessed, and it happened just weeks after the biggest disappointment in their lives.

“There's nothing like it!” Cory told us. “You don't experience joy like this from anything else. They rely on you, make me laugh every day.”

Cory admits he wasn’t instantly sold on adopting three children when he first saw them. What changed his mind? The Hodgersons point to their faith, and things they don’t believe were random connections.

For instance, just before they met their three children, the put twin beds in an empty bedroom in their home – never intending to fill those beds with preschool boys. Plus, the bedding they purchased for the crib and the nursery they prepared for the newborn they never received made a connection. The brand name is Brooklyn, just like their little girl.

The Hodgersons have chronicled both the sorrows and the joys of their journey on Facebook.

Cory and Vanessa say they are also pursuing changes to the adoption laws in the state, trying to make things better for the children, and the adults who want to adopt.