Thomas Rhett and his wife Lauren are parents! On Friday (May 11), Rhett and Lauren welcomed home their daughter Willa Gray Akins, whom they adopted from Uganda, Africa.

After a year-long journey, Rhett and Lauren tell People that going to the airport to get Willa felt like "Christmas Day."

“It felt like a dream," Lauren adds. "I’ve dreamed of us all being on the same continent for so long. It finally feels like everyone is where they’re supposed to be.”

Rhett and Lauren began the adoption process in 2016 after Lauren visited Uganda with the non-profit organization 147 Million Orphans and met their future daughter, who is now 18 months old. Willa had been an orphan since she was a newborn and was given a Ugandan name, which translates to "blessing." The name fit her perfectly, and during her trip, Lauren had an immediate bond with her future daughter.

“Lauren had this amazing glow about her, and it just felt like she was already our daughter in a weird way,” Rhett says of seeing photos of his wife with their soon-to-be daughter. “I just blurted out, ‘We should bring her home.’”

Of course, it wasn't that easy: The couple had to endure mountains of legal documents, red tape and at least a dozen trips to and from Uganda before being able to bring their daughter home. And things became just a little more complicated when Lauren found out that she was pregnant with a baby sister for Willa (in February, Rhett and Lauren revealed that Lauren was pregnant, later sharing a sweet video of the gender reveal party)!

Due this August, Lauren actually traveled during her third trimester, hoping to bring Willa home, but had to return to Nashville for a checkup before the adoption was finalized.

“I probably could have pushed it, but I just didn’t want to think something could go wrong with my pregnancy,” Lauren says. “It felt weird leaving one daughter and making sure the other one is okay. But I couldn’t do it another way.”

Thankfully, Lauren's mother and father were able to stay in Uganda, and this week, they reunited their granddaughter with her overjoyed parents. Along with Rhett's precious pic of his new family, Lauren also posted her own set of Instagram photos that readers can click through above.

Career-wise, Rhett recently released a fiery new music video with Maren Morris for his single "Craving You," and he's currently in the middle of his 2017 Home Team Tour. Hopefully he'll be able to take a nice break to settle into life as a family of three!

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