HGTV Star Jenny Marrs Had A Heartwarming First Morning With Adopted Daughter Sylvie

Since meeting her husband, Dave, Jenny Marrs, co-star of HGTV's "Fixer to Fabulous," has always held a special place in her heart for adoption. Though the couple's journey to finally welcoming daughter Sylvie wasn't always easy, Jenny reflected on how it was all worth it in her book, "House + Love = Home." The mom of five shared that it was on her home's porch swing, a cherished location, where she and Sylvie shared one of their first bonding moments stateside.

"Time felt suspended as I held my girl and gently rocked her back and forth. We didn't speak. We simply sat together, holding on to each other. She hadn't been in my arms since the summer before when I had to leave her behind at the end of a visit," Jenny penned in her book (via Yahoo). She admitted, "I had often wondered if I would ever feel the weight of her toddler frame again. That morning, under the glow of a summer's sunrise, I rubbed her back, and my tears fell. She was indeed here: This was real."

Sylvie, born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the Marrs family underwent a years-long adoption process. Most adoptions take around six months, the timeframe Jenny and her husband, Dave, were initially given. But when the country barred any adopted children from leaving, the Marrs had to return home without their daughter. It would be another 602 days before Jenny shared a heartwarming first morning with Sylvie on her porch swing.

Sylvie is all grown up

The Arkansas-based Marrs family, consisting of parents Jenny and Dave and their children by birth, twins Nathan and Ben, and daughter Charlotte, welcomed Sylvie home in 2014. The family's youngest, Luke, was born in 2019. A decade after her adoption, Sylvie has grown up from a toddler to a preteen.

Over the summer of 2023, Dave, Jenny, and all their kids enjoyed vacations abroad. Jenny shared photos of all her children in London, Italy, and even Paris, posed in front of the Eiffel Tower. Though Sylvie is one year younger than her twin brothers, she almost has them beat in height. Jenny took an opportunity to gush about what a lovely young lady Sylvie was becoming when she turned 11 in January 2023, writing, "How can it be that my squishy toddler with the raspy voice and adorable accent is standing before me now as this lovely young lady exuding both strength and grace?" Continuing, "[God] knew that our little family would never have been complete without you." The caption was shared alongside an adorable Instagram reel of Sylvie celebrating at home and the roller rink.

Jenny has also revealed that she still connects with Sylvie's foster mom, Dr. Laure, who lives in the Congo. Telling Better Homes and Gardens, "We still have that community there that's tied to our family in a way that's really important." Thanks to support from the Marrs, Sylvie may grow to value those connections, too.

The Marrs strive to help other orphans

The Berry Farm, the name of the blueberry farm owned and operated by Jenny and Dave Marrs' building company, Marrs Developing, was started "as a way to provide educational skills and opportunity for orphaned and at-risk teenage boys in Marondera, Zimbabwe," according to their website. By joining forces with the organization Help One Now (HON), the Bentonville, Arkansas, berry farm is able to support both children and their orphanages in the African country.

In June of 2023, the children's home in Zimbabwe, Musha WeVana, shared a video with Jenny, which she posted to her Instagram. In it, she shared how five children who had been orphaned as infants and lived in the children's home from the age of two (or younger) are being given valuable training in agricultural skills so that they will have the life skills needed to support themselves after they leave Musha WeVana. She finished, "This is the good work happening because of each person who partners with us at the Berry Farm. Lives are being changed. Thank you for being a part of this work."

Jenny has visited the children's home in Zimbabwe but wants to eventually take Sylvie back to her place of birth in the Congo. She hopes her daughter can learn more about her journey, telling People, "I think part of that will be going back to Congo. I think that's going to be very important, and it's definitely going to be something that we do."