The Gossip Girl star will make her case Thursday that Hermes, 8, and Helena, 6, should move with her to the United States

By Michele Corriston
Updated September 03, 2015 09:00 AM
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Credit: Courtesy Kelly Rutherford

Kelly Rutherfordshared sweet photos of the children she’s fighting ahead of her custody hearing in Monaco.

The Gossip Girl star will make her case Thursday that Hermes, 8, and Helena, 6, should move with her to the United States, where they were born and are citizens, instead of living primarily with their father, German businessman Daniel Giersch, in France and Monaco.

The actress posted an Instagram early Thursday morning of her snuggled up to her daughter, smiling, and another of her embracing both kids as she kisses Hermes’ head.

In another picture, Rutherford shares Helena’s wish list, written in the child’s adorable chicken scratch. It seems the little girl wants to be glamorous like her celebrity mother: “red lipstic,” “i shadow” and “mascera” are among her misspelled beauty requests.

After a bittersweet summer together, Rutherford is hopeful going into court, her U.S. lawyer Wendy Murphy says.

“Kelly trusts her Monaco legal team and feels that the Monaco judge treated her with respect when she was there last June. She believes the judge will again treat her with respect,” Murphy, who is not representing her abroad Thursday, tells PEOPLE in a statement. “Kelly is praying that the judge in Monaco does the right thing on Sept. 3, and sends the children home to America.”

Hermes and Helena arrived in New York in July, but a judge ordered them flown back to their dad in August. Rutherford, 46, initially refused to return them after she says they “got really panicky” when it came time to leave, but Giersch accused her of kidnapping. The desperate move came after family courts in California and New York ruled they no longer have jurisdiction over her case – even though it was a California judge who arranged for the kids to reside abroad temporarily in 2012.

Giersch, 41, has declined to comment on Rutherford’s “false statements,” saying he is protecting Hermes and Helena’s privacy.