I know there are so many prayer warriors out there.

You have covered our sweet Cora and our family in prayers so many times.
And now I need your help.

Photobucket

Will you please pray for my friend Julie and her family?
Julie was my college roommate and a dear friend.
She is 26 weeks pregnant with a sweet little girl,
and her body has gone into pre-term labor.
She is in the hospital and they are doing everything they can
to make their little girl stay put as long as possible.
I know they are trusting God with each minute,
but when it is your child it is SO hard to have things out of your control.
Please join me in covering them with prayer.
You can read more and see specific prayer requests on Julie’s blog.
We love you Julie and are praying, praying, praying!

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  • December 14, 2009 - 12:15 pm

    PamperingBeki - Thank you for sharing this.

    Praying for them.ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 12:21 pm

    Angie - Praying for your friend and her family! How scary for them. I hope the doctors can find a way to keep the sweet girl inside her mommy as long as possible. Lord, be near this family and this child…ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 12:29 pm

    John and Elisa Seaba - Will certainly pray!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 12:38 pm

    Todd and Courtney - oh no! I have kept up with Julie through her blog. Praying for them!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 12:47 pm

    Lauren Kelly - Oh goodness, praying the Lord be near them right now!!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 12:50 pm

    Sarah - Will be praying for them!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 12:56 pm

    Judy - Oh bless their hearts!! May the peace of God rule and reign in that room with Julie right now!! May Jesus preserve and protect the life of that sweet baby!! I’m praying!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 1:01 pm

    The Noble Steeds - I don’t know if you read every comment or not but I follow your blog religiously. When I read today’s post I had to leave a few words. I gave birth to my son at 24 weeks gestation. He is now a healthy and happy 15 month old. But it was a long road. Doctors can do amazing things but it was the blessings of our Heavenly Father that got us through. I will be praying for your friend and her baby!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 1:53 pm

    Christine - Praying, Jess. Thanks for passing this along.ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 2:02 pm

    Shannon - Will definitely pray for them!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 7:14 pm

    Shana - Praying!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 8:34 pm

    Jennifer Dawn - Stopped everything and said a prayer…I hope God works in a powerful, miraculous way in this situation!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 8:57 pm

    Sara - done.

    it is amazing what they can do now…i have a friend, who delivered a baby boy at 25 weeks…1 pound 12 oz…
    he survived on love and prayer and is in great health…i wish the same for your friend.ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 9:17 pm

    Tricia - Praying for their family.

    Still praying for yours as well.

    XO*TriciaReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 10:07 pm

    Jane In The Jungle - Oh I’ve been in her shoes….so scary….will pray the meds do the trick and then bedrest!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 10:13 pm

    Taryn - I will be praying! I have been reading your blog for almost a year now and have been so inspired and so in awe of you and Joel and your baby Cora. She is absolutely so precious and so beautiful in every way. My second little girl is just two days younger than little Cora. That’s one reason why I have felt so drawn to your blog and your story. The way you have captured her little personality in all your photos is just amazing. I am sure they are a blessing to you. I would love to know what type of camera you have and how you chose it. Or were most of the pictres of Cora done professionally? Either way, they are great and I can tell you love to take pictures. Just wondering?? Best Wishes with Baby Mac and God Bless!! TarynReplyCancel

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  • December 15, 2009 - 12:19 am

    Diana - Of course! Covering them with loads of Heaven-bound prayers!ReplyCancel

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  • December 15, 2009 - 12:23 am

    Kristi - I will be praying :)
    KristiReplyCancel

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  • December 15, 2009 - 1:14 am

    Keilani - Praying…. as hard as I can! God give this precious baby extra time in mommy’s tummy..Also thinking of your family. What great examples of family you guys are!ReplyCancel

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  • December 15, 2009 - 1:23 am

    Missy - prayers said!ReplyCancel

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  • December 15, 2009 - 9:29 am

    onlymehere - Prayers will be offered by our family. I hope that you’re doing well at this point in your own pregnancy.ReplyCancel

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  • December 15, 2009 - 9:48 am

    Robin in Benton - This was on our church prayer chain yesterday – Julie is a teacher at the school my daughter attends. What a small world it really is. Praying that the Lord covers this family and keeps that sweet baby safely inside as long as possibleReplyCancel

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  • December 15, 2009 - 12:47 pm

    Karen - praying for help for this family from God during this holiday seasonReplyCancel

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  • December 15, 2009 - 12:56 pm

    CourtneyC - I will be praying for her and her precious baby.ReplyCancel

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  • December 15, 2009 - 3:23 pm

    Carla - Thinking of your friend.ReplyCancel

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  • December 16, 2009 - 7:28 am

    Wibeche og Rune - I will pray for your friend and her family

    Wib from NorwayReplyCancel

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  • December 18, 2009 - 12:14 pm

    American History - your prayer request touched us. We are praying for you. We found this site helpful http://www.holylandprayer.com Check it; maybe it gives you a relief. God bless you.ReplyCancel

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Hopefully you have seen the button on my sidebar.
Project 320 is having huge giveaways starting TODAY.
And all you have to do is donate water.
The goal is to build a well.
We can do it!
Here are the guidelines, straight from the project 320 blog

How is this going to work?
We are so excited for the week to begin.
The outpouring of love and support for what seemed to be an impossible idea has been amazing.

An entire village will be changed.
The course of history will be altered for good.

Because of you.

We are immensely thankful.

Beyond what we could hope or dream.

Here is the fine print:

Not only do we have 15 bundles,
but each bundle has over 20 items.
Triple our goal!

Starting on Monday at 6 a.m. Pacific time we will post three bundles each day through Friday.
Bundles of amazing.

How bad do you want to win right now?

Well here is how.

First:
Donate HERE.
For each $10 you donate you will get one entry into the bundle of your choice.
If you donate $50 you get 5 entries.
1 comment = one entry.

Second:
Come back and choose what you would like to win.

If you have already donated, thank you so much! You are ahead of the game. You now get to choose which bundle you want to win (and comment under.)

Each entry should be left in the comment section below the bundle that you would like to win.
You don’t have to have a blog to enter.
You do need to leave your first and last name as well as your email address.
Here is an example:

Each night at midnight Pacific time all entries/comments will close.
At that point, random.org will choose a winner for each bundle.
After donation verification, winners will be posted on the sidebar.

Be sure to check back to see if you are a happy winner!
(Project 320 winners must reside in the US.)

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  • December 14, 2009 - 12:55 pm

    Judy - I did notice that button and I’m so excited about it! I love it that people are choosing to give “Water for Christmas” this year!! It’s so exciting to be able to change someone’s life with such a simple gift! Thanks for bringing awareness to this amazing cause!ReplyCancel

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Only three weeks left…

Everything looked good at my appointment yesterday.
And I am even feeling a little more prepared for the arrival of Baby Mac.
My mom and I tackled Cora’s room this week.
I was SO hard to go through all her things.
Toys, books, blankets, clothes, hair clips…
So many of those things I hadn’t really looked at since we took Cora to the hospital.
So many memories came flooding back.

I was so thankful that my mom was there to help me.
To cry with me when I found things that made me burst into tears.
And to help me just keep going.
I think I would have been tempted to shut the door and not face it when I really needed to.

Before we went through anything, we just cleaned the room.
I wanted to leave it just like it was and take some pictures.
I don’t think I ever took any pictures of Cora’s room when we finished it before she was born.
I had wanted to add blue or pink later since we didn’t know if she was a boy or girl.
I wanted it to be perfect first, and of course it never was (at least I didn’t think it was).

These were Cora’s three favorite things.
Her blankie.
Her pacifier.
And her dog book.
Joel read this book to her every night.
She would reach out and touch all the dogs.
And she would giggle and giggle when Joel made the dogs bark.
It was so cute.
I put these three things in a box along with some other special things of Cora’s.

We even managed to get the bassinet sheets, blankets and burpies washed.
I think everything is almost ready.
I need to pick up a few things like diapers…
Otherwise, I think we are as ready as we will ever be.
Nothing like preparing for a new baby in one day!

Please pray for us as we prepare to meet this little one.
The past few weeks have been emotional for many reasons.
We continue to seek the Lord for renewed strength to get through each day.
How thankful we are for His unfailing love and comfort to us!
We wouldn’t be where we are today without Him.

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:09 pm

    Anonymous - You are both beautiful – you and your belly – you and your baby’s room – you and your mom – you and your Joel.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:15 pm

    Christa - I will be praying for you and your husband over the next few weeks. I cannot wait to see if you will be having a little boy or girl!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:15 pm

    ml - Praying for you, Joel and Baby Mac!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:20 pm

    Our Family of 5 - Your nursery is beautiful and you look great! You all are in my prayers.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:21 pm

    Beckypdj - I struggle with what to say.

    I know it is so hard, but you’ve done it. I took pictures of everything in Peyton’s room too. I didn’t want to be ready mentally and not ready physically, so I took the pictures well before I cleaned it. When I knew I was ready, I put most of his things away. It was several months after that I changed the comforter on the bed. Everything was hard to do, but I knew I wouldn’t regret doing it.

    Eagerly awaiting the arrival of Baby Mac right along with you!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:23 pm

    Mandi - I’m asking the Lord to bring you to mind more frequently so you are covered in prayer throughout the next few weeks and months.

    The room is beautiful and I’m so glad you took pictures of it as it was. I can’t imagine how hard it was for you to go through all of Cora’s things, but thankfully we have a God who understands just what you feel. Cling to Him over the next few weeks…I know you will.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:27 pm

    Party of Five - I think the baby’s room is perfect. Praying for you and your new arrival!!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:27 pm

    Cindy - Thank you for sharing Cora’s room. Its beautiful. Her memory will not be forgotten.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:29 pm

    Stephanie - Praying for you, sweet girl, and Baby Mac, and Joel. You are so strong. Can’t wait to see if it’s a boy or girl!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:33 pm

    the breedens - Jess, This is so exciting. A new baby will be such a blessing to your family. It will surely be the most wonderful thing when you get to hold her/him in your arms! A blessed and bittersweet day it will be.

    Very cute room. Inspires me to spruce up our little Nyla’s room…ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:33 pm

    The Shepherd Family - You are an amazing woman. I love reading about your family and especially your memories of Cora. She is a very loved little girl. I too am anxious for your new arrival. I will continue to pray for you, Joel and the new baby!
    HUGS!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:38 pm

    Mum2twopreciousgifts - Dear Jess and Joel

    Our little family in Australia will be praying for your little family especially often during the next few weeks.

    M xReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:39 pm

    Al's World - You look beautiful. How strong you are, how strong Joel is, how strong you both are holding on to God. He will strenghen you, hold you and be joyful with you as you bring this precious little one into the world. Remember, Cora has played with him/her and told him/her what a great mommy and daddy you are and how lucky he/she is going to be having you both as a mommy and daddy.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:40 pm

    Gail - Praying for you, Joel and Jess. I can’t imagine how hard it was going through Cora’s room. Can’t wait to hear the news of your baby! Love you so much!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:41 pm

    Kate - you look so cute!! I think you are having a girl!!! Prayers are sent your way:)ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:43 pm

    kaylin rose and mara anne - i don’t know what to say…my heart goes out to you…but, i love the belly picture…you look wonderful and have that glow.
    i am praying for you all…and thinking of you a lot, even if i have never meet you.

    the room looks great…so cute!
    blessings to you!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:45 pm

    Lauren Kelly - This comment has been removed by the author.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:47 pm

    Lauren Kelly - Praying for ya’ll. Can’t believe how fast these 9 months have flown!!!!!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:51 pm

    aimee - Oh, how hard this must have been for you. My heart aches for you as I think of you surrounded by Cora’s beautiful things, preparing for a new baby to be with you in the world. The room is so lovely, I’m sure Cora felt so cherished with you and Joel in her home. PrayingReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:54 pm

    Anonymous - When I read your posts, I get teary-eyed and goosebumps tingle my arms. You really have no idea how special of a young Christian lady you are and how inspiring you are to those around you. Well, not only those around you. I have never met you and live hundreds of miles away, yet you still inspire me! Keep up your faith. Many are praying for you DAILY! God Bless Baby Mac!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 2:59 pm

    Mandy - Something about seeing that binkie just brought tears to my eyes. Maybe because a bink is something that doesn’t get shared. Books and blankets can be, but a binky in such a personal favorite. And to see hers and realize that she doesn’t need it anymore just tugged at my heart. Oh how I still ache for your loss of little Cora, but rejoice as you prepare to meet your 2nd amazing Baby Mac! Always prayin!

    -Mandy

    PS You, my dear, look fabulous with a capital F! Thanks for posting that picture!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:01 pm

    bagfashionista - God bless you and your family and Cora up in heaven above.

    Perhaps your new little one knows Cora, and is right now hearing all the wonderful stories and memories about you that Cora has…she’s passing her love to you through her little brother/sister.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:11 pm

    Todd and Courtney - Cora’s room is beautiful! I love the decorations that you used. I am looking forward to the post that says new baby mac has arrived. The burpies I ordered for my Lauren are now in her stocking, waiting for Santa to arrive. Praying for you!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:13 pm

    Help Meet in the Making - Praying for you as you get ready to welcome this new blessing into your arms.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:16 pm

    Sarah - Sitting here with tears in my eyes…
    You look beautiful
    and I loved getting to peek into Cora’s room and see all of the wonderful things she played with.
    Praying for you as your prepare to welcome Cora’s baby brother or sister into the world.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:18 pm

    Joel - Good luck Jess and Joel! Our family will be praying for you.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:19 pm

    Anonymous - You look awesome Jess! We so can’t wait to meet baby Mac. We are praying for a Christmas baby. Can’t wait to hear!!! Love you guys, AndiReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:25 pm

    Marla Taviano - So beautiful. All of it. Cora. Everything. Praying for you!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:29 pm

    Vicki - You are such an amazing woman, wife and mother. What led me to your blog last spring was your daughter’s name since it is one we considered too. I check it often and my daughter and I add you to our prayers each night. Our girls are near the same age. Bless you and your new addition!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:29 pm

    Suzie-IA mommy of 3 and 4 angels - I have been following your journey for quite some time from here in Iowa…You are absolutely stunning with the new little Baby Mac! I absolutely love Cora’s room and thank you so much for sharing the pictures. What an honor for new little one to have big sissy’s room! Praying for a safe, healthy arrival! What a holiday blessing!! Be well!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:36 pm

    Anonymous - Prayers, prayers, prayers. Thank you for the glimpse into the nursery–my wish would be that every child in the world would be loved as much as your children are.

    PS you have a great “eye” for fabric and color– the nursery and the Cora’s etsy items are so cool…ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:46 pm

    Barclay Kathryn - Wow, 3 weeks. Our family will be praying for yours! :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:50 pm

    Vanessa - I’ve read your blog for several months now, and am amazed by your strength. You are truly beautiful! Many blessings to you and your family. Can’t wait to see pictures of your new little bundle :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:51 pm

    Shannon - I will continue to pray for you all.

    My best friend and I always donate to a charity for Christmas each year instead of getting each other gifts, and this year, I chose charity: water in honor of you and Cora.

    Love and prayers going your way! Your strength and dedication to the Lord are inspirational.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:51 pm

    Maureen - Cora and Baby Mac have been blessed to have you and your husband as parents. A December baby is a tremendous gift, my December baby will be 20 next week.

    Your faith is inspiring. Good luck!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:55 pm

    Melissa - Been praying for you especially knowing you would be dealing with a lot of emotions working in Cora’s room. Your post made me burst into tears for you as I saw the picture of the Dog book. I just bought that book for my daughter who is also named Cora. She, too, adores dogs. I cannot possibly fathom what you have gone through, but my heart and my prayers are with you!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 3:59 pm

    Unmistakably BLESSED - I’m praying for you, sweet girl. I don’t know you, not here on this earth, but I know you in my heart. I pray for you. I will KEEP praying for you. May you feel His hand upon you, know His perfect peace . . .

    You do look beautiful. Positively beautiful.

    And you were wrong about something. Cora’s room IS perfect.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 4:00 pm

    deyoungsters - such a beautiful room for cora and her new brother or sister. seeing cora’s favorite things made me smile… what a sweet girl. saying prayers for you… and of course new baby Mac :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 4:07 pm

    Kristen - Prayers for the Macs as you prepare for this new arrival! :-)ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 4:11 pm

    Kat - Jess, you are so beautiful, both inside and out. I’ll continue to pray for you. Cora’s room looks lovely, I am sure baby Mac will feel her love when he/she gets to stay in the nursery for the first time. May you be surrounded by love, comfort and joy.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 4:39 pm

    Micah - This post brought me to tears, as so many of your posts do. This is such a tough time, Jess. I can’t even begin to imagine what you’re facing. I’m so thankful that God knows exactly what you’re going through, and can give you just the amount of strength you need to face each day. Praying for you, as always…ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 4:45 pm

    A Neighbor - Because I understand the crushing emotions that come with expecting a second after sending the first to heaven…

    Why can’t they understand?
    If I become blind
    In one of my eyes,
    Of course I am still grateful for the vision that remains in the other.

    But I will never stop mourning the absence of
    My precious eye
    The one which I lost.

    My vision has changed forever.
    I will never, ever
    Seen things the same way again.
    - Joanne CacciatoreReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 4:50 pm

    starlightmommy - Cora was such a blessed Child……I know she will be waiting to see the arrival of her sibling. Cora’s room is beautiful….I love her closet.

    Take care and I will be praying for you/baby/familyReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 4:54 pm

    forever folding laundry - You are lovely, and so is the room. This new baby is so lucky to be joining your special family, and he/she will be proud to have Cora as his/her older sister.

    Many prayers for the next few weeks, and beyond!

    ~KeriReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 5:09 pm

    Anonymous - Here I am crying again I remember her with that blanket at the hospital from the photos you had back then. Praying for continued strength and peace for you and Joel. Your faith is amazing and you are so strong Cora was so lucky to have you as her parents!
    Summer & family in CaliforniaReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 5:14 pm

    Anonymous - http://fourlittleladybugs.blogspot.com/
    mAybe this would be a nice connection for you.
    Best of luck to you!! You look so beautiful!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 5:33 pm

    Alisha - Praying for you and your new baby. I cannot imagine the emotions you feel. Cora is looking down on her new sweet brother or sister and will protect her and you and Joels hearts.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 5:46 pm

    Sara - That had to have been so hard. My son never made it home and it was near impossible getting “his” room ready for our little girl. I admire your strength. The pictures just brought me to tears for you – this new baby is so lucky to have you guys as parents and to have Cora as his/her own special angel.

    I will be praying for you.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 5:51 pm

    Kimberly - You are such an amazing person. Its amazing to see how God is working through you to speak to others. Thank you for sharing your life with us. Merry Christmas!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 5:59 pm

    Tonya - Bless your sweet heart! I will be praying for you. God has carried you all so far….you’re a true inspiration.

    My 1st son died 16yrs ago and even though I didn’t have another baby for 7 more years, it was so hard being pregnant w/her and anticipating her arrival.

    You’re all in my prayers.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 6:06 pm

    Christina - What a precious room! I love it!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 6:11 pm

    Don, Aimee, Kaitlyn and Kysen - Prayers to you and Joel as you take this bitter sweet journey of meeting your new little bundle of joy! What a lucky brother or sister to have Cora as a big sister! You two are amazing and you inspire me all the time to be better and let God be the center of my life!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 6:17 pm

    Tiffany C. - Crying for you, rejoicing for you, praying for you.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 6:34 pm

    Givinya De Elba - Oh Jess, I’m trying not to cry. My sister’s 30th birthday would have been yesterday. I prayed for you and Joel, while I prayed for my mum and dad.

    http://friendlyblackandwhitedog.blogspot.com/2009/12/happy-birthday-little-girl.htmlReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 6:41 pm

    Paula Aspacher - Cora’s room is beautiful. I cleaned and put away clothes etc. for a friend who lost (at Christmas2000)her handicapped 3 year old daughter suddenly, it was hearbreaking as she could have no more children. she now has an adopted daughter from China, God is good and faithful.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 7:03 pm

    Angie - Oh Jess – I will be praying for you, Joel & Cora’s little brother or sister.

    I cant imagine having to go through Cora’s room. I love that you took pictures & your mom was able to be there with you.

    Earnestly & fervently praying my dear!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 7:11 pm

    Carrie - A What a perfect room. Praying for you all :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 7:27 pm

    KK - Praying for a safe arrival and comfort. It must be so exciting and yet so difficult!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 7:52 pm

    Lindsey - I am so excited for you! We will be praying for peace, health and comfort for you as you welcome baby Mac into this world! Your story has touched my heart so much.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 8:12 pm

    Carla - I don’t know what to say, your strenth is astounding. I’m so glad you have that mammoth task over you now. Cora’s room IS perfect, just as it will be for Baby Mac. He or she is already so blessed. You look fab in your photo but of course you do, all that goodness and strength just has to shine through. You are an inspiration, you have changed my view of the world and I will always be grateful. Enjoy these last few weeks of waiting for Baby Mac. I will be eagerly awaiting your annoucement xReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 8:31 pm

    k and c's mom - You precious girl. My prayers are with you and your husband during this time. Praying blessings all over you both.ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 9:51 pm

    Melissa - I’m so excited for you guys and can’t beleive baby Mac will be here any day! Love the belly pic to. I enjoyed looking at the pictures of Coras room as well. I’m praying for you guys!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 9:56 pm

    Andolicious - You are so beautiful! I’m sure it was hard going thru Cora’s room. But I bet she was with u as u got everything ready. God bless u and Joel. I hope you will feel Cora’s presence when you have new baby Mac. God Bless you and Merry Christmas! You are in my prayers!ReplyCancel

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  • December 11, 2009 - 10:20 pm

    Tricia - You, my sweet, beautiful friend continue to amaze me. My heart hurts for you all in so many ways, and sings to the heavens in so many ways. Your sweet baby Mac will have the most amazing little family ever. Praying for abundant blessings.

    With love and continued prayers,
    XO*TriciaReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 12:00 am

    DeMo - When people go through something like this, I wonder how in the world they can do it without walking with Christ and knowing that there is something greater for us.

    This brought me to tears, reading about Cora’s favorite things.

    I’m excited for you and Joel and for Steve to point out the rose and announce the new Baby Mac. :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 12:37 am

    texasinafrica - Grieving and hoping with you tonight. You look wonderful and your little one is lucky, lucky, lucky to have such a faithful mom. Peace of Christ be with you.ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 1:02 am

    Megan - I cannot imagine how hard it was to go through Cora’s things and her room. From all accounts, your mom is amazing, and I’m glad that she was there for you.ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 1:08 am

    Kristin - Hi Jess,
    This is the first time that I have commented on your blog, but have been reading it for a while now. I think I came upon it through a friend of a friend of a friend? I can only imagine how difficult it was for you to go through Cora’s things…I think the room was/is perfect and am praying for you as you await your second miracle.ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 2:02 am

    Cori - Beautiful picture!

    I just can’t imagine how hard it must have been to go through Cora’s things. Just the thought of it makes my heart hurt for you.ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 3:36 am

    Jen - My love and prayers are with you.ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 7:58 am

    Kristi REDISKE - Wow-how emotional to even read-the Lord was good when he gave you such a wonderful Christian mother to help you through these times-there is nothing like a great mom. We will be praying for you and that new bundle of joy God is giving you. God Bless you all.ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 8:21 am

    Melinda - The nursery is lovely – as are you. You are in my prayers. I too am looking forward to seeing if you have a boy or a girl!ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 8:29 am

    susy - God bless all of you.ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 9:52 am

    Amy Leigh - Praying for you… And the room does look perfect.ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 10:43 am

    Anonymous - I can’t wait to find out if Baby Mac is a boy or a girl. I’m praying for an easy delivery and comforted hearts. Merry Christmas & Happy Baby Day!!

    PS – I can’t wait to see my niece in her Cora dress :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 11:04 am

    Enos Family - Thinking about you and sending good thoughts your way.ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 11:11 am

    Anonymous - I don’t comment too often on your blog but I just wanted to let you know I still pray for you guys – your story has really touched and inspired me. This baby will be a huge blessing for your family. I’ll be praying for you guys the next few weeks!ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 11:25 am

    Nancy - Praying for your delivery, for your strength, for your memories to stay fresh & for your new little one!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 12:16 pm

    Trasie Bressler - I don’t know that I have every shed so many tears asI have over this blog post. My heart aches for you, it smiles for you, it cries for you, it smiles for you some more because you are going to be holding a baby in your arms again and I as a person am so happy for you. The room is precious, Cora’s things beautiful, and I cry some more.

    When Cora got sick I was holding my brand new baby in my arms (December 30th is when she was born) and I cried and held her a little tighter as I read your story. I cried when Cora went to Heaven, I cried when you had to celebrate her birthday without her, I cried when Easter came and every holiday that has passed because I can’t imagine how hard it would be to face those days and yet your faith amazes me beyond words. I have cried when I see happy posts because you are smiling through your pain, I have cried……nearly every post.

    Thanks for being such an open book. You have no idea how much you have changed me as a Mom and the way that I look at my 3 gifts that I am so blessed with.

    May your CHRISTmas season be blessed, and May the next 3 weeks go flying by for you so that you can do again what you do best.

    Many Many BlessingsReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 12:59 pm

    Anonymous - Your reader”Trasi Bressler” wrote perfectly how I feel…Still thinking ofand praying for you, Joel, Cora and Baby Mac EVERYDAY!

    Thank you.

    KimReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 1:06 pm

    amy - Cora’s room is adorable. i cannot even imagine how hard going through her room & her things must have been. cora will always be a part of your family. i continue to pray for you, joel, & baby Mac.ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 2:38 pm

    Christine - What a beautiful room. Thank you for inviting us into your home and your lives. This was the first thing I saw this morning as I started my day, and just couldn’t post earlier. The reality of this nursery, empty but soon to be filled, is something that just tugged at my heart so strongly today. I know this is a reality that you live with daily, though, and I’m praying for you.

    I can’t wait to “meet” Baby Mac. May you feel the Lord’s presence in an awesome and undeniable way as you prepare to bring this little one into your home and lives. God bless :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 2:52 pm

    Natalie - Many thoughts and prayers for you, Joel and baby Mac.ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 5:17 pm

    Kelly - Keeping your family in my prayers. Your strength is so inspirational. You are so beautiful inside and out and Baby Mac and Cora are so lucky to have you as their mommmy!ReplyCancel

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  • December 12, 2009 - 11:29 pm

    sassy studio - you are amazing…beautiful…..and so strong. I am so happy for your happiness.ReplyCancel

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  • December 13, 2009 - 12:32 am

    Lexie Loo & Dylan Too - You look wonderful!
    Every time I read your posts, I end up in tears. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
    I hope the next 3 weeks pass quickly for you!ReplyCancel

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  • December 13, 2009 - 1:43 am

    Christina - Yes, that is such a beautiful photo, and you are such a beautiful lady. The room is absolutely wonderful, what a sweet, special place.
    I praise the Lord for your strong support system, for your mom, for Joel, and for your own faithfulness. His faithfulness is the reason we are able to go on during any given time. Thank you for sharing your journey, Jess. I can’t imagine how hard it is, but I pray that there is healing in it as well.ReplyCancel

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  • December 13, 2009 - 3:38 pm

    Kristi - You look absolutely beautiful! I can only imagine how hard and bittersweet this is for you all. I am praying for you all. Cora’s room is perfect. :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 13, 2009 - 4:00 pm

    jennifer rogers - bless your heart, I know that going through her room was the hardest thing to do, it brought tears to my eyes and memories of losing my little girl just came flooding back, I remember telling my mother that I couldn’t go home and walk by her empty room and she told me to just shut the door until I was ready to go in there, I didn’t look at that room until I found out that I was pregnant with a little boy and decided it was time to put away her things, and it was very heart wrenching to look at all of her things and just know that all the hopes and dreams we had for her were all not lost, but just put on hold, because I know without a shadow of a doubt that I will see her again and hold her in my arms. I hope that all goes well with your pregnancy (not too much longer!) and that you enjoy your new baby very soon!ReplyCancel

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  • December 13, 2009 - 7:18 pm

    Miss G - Jes, Cora’s room is BEAUTIFUL! It is so exciting for me to know that y’all did not know if she would be a boy or a girl and you have that sweet adorable room. We do not know if our little one will be a boy or a girl either.

    You did good just “doing the next thing” as Elizabeth Elliot would say.

    Oh Jes, I pray that these next weeks will bring joy, peace and comfort in the midst of such emotional times. KellyReplyCancel

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  • December 13, 2009 - 11:38 pm

    Ronda B. - Jess, I’m praying for you and Joel and your family. May God bless you all as you bring home your new little one and start the ‘busy’ness of tending a newborn again. Hope you can find a minute to drop in a see us at TDG!ReplyCancel

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  • December 13, 2009 - 11:38 pm

    meg duerksen - her room is so beautiful. i saw it once and remember thinking how i loved the color it was. :) funny to hear you wanted to change it.
    it looks so cozy and welcoming for a sweet baby.
    well i am sad i didn’t get to help you deliver a baby this weekend…HA…but i cannot wait to hear the news of this new baby entering your life.ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 2:40 am

    Diana - Yeah, what everyone has already said… and then some! Keeping you, and Joel, and Baby Mac covered in prayers! {{hugz}}ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 3:22 am

    Sue - As I’ve said many times, you are so brave. Thinking of you all the time through this emotional time. I cannot imagine having to go through what you are having to face on a daily basis and cleaning out Cora’s room must’ve been so difficult. I feel so strongly that your new baby is going to be such a wonderful blessing and while he/she can’t replace what you’ve lost in Cora, he/she will definitely help fill part of the hole that’s been left in your lives. I am so excited for you, just try to keep focusing on all the good things around you.

    Take care of yourselves over the festive season, I’m glad to see you setting new traditions, the old ones must just so hard to face again this year.

    Sending you both the hugest hugs and lots of thoughts and prayers as you travel this road. Can’t wait to meet the bump (you are still looking fantastic!!)

    Sue xReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 10:58 am

    Karina - Wow, only three more weeks! You look amazing, and so does the baby’s room. Keep strong, mama!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 11:24 am

    PamperingBeki - I’ve read this post over and over this weekend and just couldn’t comment. I cried each time.

    My heart is still crushed for you Jess. I hope you know how loved you are, by soooooo very many people.

    The room is precious. I can’t wait to see baby Mac!! You’re probably due for some new jewelry, right? Haha!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 11:30 am

    Erin, Kaitlyn and Henry - I think of you often and pray for you almost nightly. I hope that you can enjoy every minute with your new baby and hold no fears for your future. We will be going through Kansas over Christmas and I always think of you when we drive through. Good luck with everything!ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 12:51 pm

    Coach's Wife - I was literally holding my breath as I read this post and looked at the pictures of Cora’s room. For some reason your story has affected more than any I’ve read and I can’t explain why. I hurt for you, I rejoice for you, I pray for you. I hope that everything continues to go smoothly as far as your emotions with the situation. Joel has been an amazing source of strength to you and it’s encouraging to see. I finally let my breath out when I saw the pictures of her pacifier, blanket and dog book only because that’s when the tears actually started. Bless you Jess, and everyone involved.ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 4:39 pm

    The Schilling's from Cimarron - I can’t believe it is already time to meet little Mac…..
    We have missed seeing you and hugging you soooo much! you are absolutely beautiful! wish I was there to rub your little belly!
    We pray for peace and comfort everyday for you! We know God will bless you with a precious healthy baby! I hope this one has chunky cheeks just like Cora did!
    I am late on getting out the holiday cards of course, but will of course send you one soon!
    Love to you all! and take care and RELAX these last few weeks! :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 14, 2009 - 5:16 pm

    Kristin - I have followed your blog for quite some time now, and have been so heartbroken over the loss of sweet Cora. The Lord brings you to mind so many times. I am praying for you, and your family all the time. I am so excited for your arms to be filled again with a sweet baby to love. You are a wonderful Mother,and such a Godly example.I will be praying for Baby Macs’ safe arrival! God bless your sweet family:)ReplyCancel

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  • December 15, 2009 - 9:06 am

    Kristin Stegent - I can’t imagine how hard that must have been for you to go through Cora’s room! I am praying for you guys and little baby mac!ReplyCancel

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  • December 21, 2009 - 7:24 pm

    Shawn - Dear Jess,

    I have never commented before, but I have followed your blog ever since Cora went into the hospital. I have ached along with you. My sister, Nicol, and brother-in-law, Greg, were at the grieving retreat that you and your husband attended. I do not know what it is like to lose a baby. I have stood there helpless as I have watched my sister grieve.

    I want you to know that you are suffering well. You are bringing such honor and glory to Jesus. Nicol often says that she didn’t want this kind of ministry, but we can see Jesus in you. You exude His hope even in the midst of your aching heart.

    I am so thankful that you will soon be joined by a sweet baby. The room is beautiful. That baby will be so blessed to have you and Joel as parents.

    Thank you for light of Jesus that shines so clearly each time you share your beautiful, broken heart with all of us.

    ShawnReplyCancel

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On Saturday the girls drove out to a little town not too far from us. We wanted to try out a new Christmas tradition.


I had heard about a wreath making class and decided to sign us up. It was worth a try, right? We started out with fresh greens, a wire circle, clippers, and a roll of wire.

My mom, sister, and three sister-in-laws sisters-in-law came along.

We had a great time. And our wreaths didn’t turn out too bad. This would definitely be a fun thing to do every year.

There was even a little Christmas cheer for Baby Mac.

After the wreath making and a little Christmas shopping at the nursery, we drove to another little town for a Christmas Soiree. We had fun looking around, but walked away empty handed. It was time to eat. My pregnant tummy was hungry!

After lunch we hit one more antique store. I found a great ceiling tile and a cute little turquoise table for my mud room.
The Christmas trees and joy ornament were from the nursery where we made the wreaths. And that great blanket was made by my mom. I snagged it from my grandparents who just moved here! We stopped by their apartment to help with some unpacking on the way home.
It was a great Saturday. Thanks for starting a new Christmas tradition with me girls!

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  • December 8, 2009 - 10:23 pm

    Anonymous - SisterS-in-law, pleaseReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 10:40 pm

    Tricia - What a fantastic tradition! It looks like you girls had a wonderful time. Such a great girls day.

    With love and prayers,
    XO*Tricia

    (P.S. Anonymous needs to get a life. Seriously?)ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 10:45 pm

    Jodie - I think the pedantic person who left the anonymous comment missed the point of this post. So glad you’re enjoying some new Christmas traditions! I’m relatively new to your blog and I really enjoy it. I think you’re incredibly brave and a true inspiration. I’m praying for Baby Mac’s safe arrival and that, in the meantime, you’ll be able to find more moments of joy this Christmas.ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 11:12 pm

    Robin in Benton - Love the picture of Baby Mac in the wreath! Looks like a great new Christmas tradition!ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 11:15 pm

    Aaron and Shannon - Was that at Stone Creek? I did that a couple of years ago. It was fun…but a lot of work! Glad you had a good time!ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 11:16 pm

    Emmy - How precious! Nothing like Christmas traditions :)

    Ok, Mr. Anonymous. Get a life!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 11:28 pm

    Christina - That looks unbelievably fun! (Love the wreath around the belly!) What a great idea…it’s so wonderful that you have family so close! My parents are in VA (we’re in TX) and my husband’s family is in FL. We miss everyone so much. Will you show pictures of you new things at home? :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 11:37 pm

    Mum2twopreciousgifts - What a beautiful post about your family. I don’t have any contact with my sister-in-law so I can’t begin to imagine how marvellous it is to have sisters-in-law that you enjoy spending time with.

    All the very best from very hot Australia.ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 11:45 pm

    kaylin rose and mara anne - looks like a lot of fun! i love starting new traditions!ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 11:48 pm

    Sherryl - That first picture is ADORABLE! Did you make that too?ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 12:01 am

    Lexie Loo & Dylan Too - It looks like you had a wonderful day! I would definitely continue doing that every year!ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 12:11 am

    This Little Hen - Christmas traditions are so important! I am currently trying to think of ones to start with my yound family. I wish there were wreath making classes around here, they are too cute!ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 12:28 am

    Heather at All A Flutter - I think that sounds like a really fun new tradition. Something to look forward to!

    P.S. I loved all of the pictures, too!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 1:09 am

    meg duerksen - FUN!!! i wish i could have done that class?!
    there was nothing at the christmas soiree….because i got it all before you got there! :)
    i got lots of goodies.
    did you go to molly’s too? how funny that we missed each other.
    i was in town for my kids’ basketball.
    i love the idea of a NEW tradition. awesome.ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 1:19 am

    Diana - OMG! OMG! Your cute little turqoise table is EXACTLY like the little green table that my mama had my daddy make for me when I was FIVE years old… we always called it my “mud pie” table. Mama thought I needed something to make my mud pies on. In fact, I still had it up until last year when *sniff sniff* it finally gave out and fell apart. My sweet husband had repaired it a couple times in the past, but alas, this time… *sigh* I taught my own sons, and then my grandkids, how to make mud pies on that little green table.

    LOVE that you had such a good time, you really needed that! Baby Mac makes an adorable “wreath.” Hehehe!

    You are so BEAUTIFUL when you smile. We can tell you had a great time with all the GIRLS in your family! AWESOME new Christmas tradition!ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 2:59 am

    Erica - what a fun trip! i’m glad you are doing things you enjoy!ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 5:37 am

    L ~ S - Looks fun! I did a similar thing, but with flowers also a few weeks ago with my sisters-in-law also! We want to do it again in the spring with some kind of spring creation. I love your new treasures.ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 6:38 am

    Carla - What a coincidence, I was just seriously considering learning how to wreathmake too…though considering I am all thumbs, it might be a bit ambitious :-) You have a lovely family, and they can say the same thing. Baby mac looks great, a true Christmas spirit already :-).

    I love seeing your updates, even on the harder days but you have such a knack with a camera, you take such fab photos. If you have any plans of setting up an interior design company in Western Europe, can I be first to know please lol.

    You’re doing an amazing job with this December, keep at it. Thinking of you lots and sending all my positive vibes, hugs CarlaReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 7:49 am

    Micah - Good for you, girl! Your wreaths look great too! Love the photos as always :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 8:53 am

    Tsquared417 - Love the wreath belly picture!! I’m glad you have such wonderful people to help you enjoy the season!!

    P.W. couldn’t agree more that ANONYMOUS needs to be shot.ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 9:28 am

    Anonymous - Just trying to be helpful but you might want to correct it to say “sisters in law”…great post :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 9:47 am

    Andrea - Fun! I went to a wreath making class on Saturday, too! I know we live close (I’m in Wichita) so I wondered if we were in the same class–but it was small enough that I don’t think I missed you! =)ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 9:49 am

    Lauren Kelly - Soooooooo fun!!!!!!! :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 9:55 am

    Cristy - That looks like so much fun Jess! So glad you had a fun, girly time!

    CristyReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 10:01 am

    Jaclin in NJ - I am new to your blog, and found it on Pierce Phillips’ CaringBridge site. He is a 2 year old little boy who lost his battle with Neuroblastoma on October 9th. My heart goes out to you and your family, and you are in my thoughts always. So happy for you that Cora will be a big sister soon, and certain that your new baby has an extra-special guardian angel! You are an inspiration and a wonderful example of grace and courage through an unimaginable ordeal! Can’t wait to hear about your new arrival!

    P.S. Anonymous, you are a disgrace!ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 10:45 am

    A - Great pictures- it looks like you had an awesome time!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 11:10 am

    The Perfect Trio - Love that new tradition!!!

    I am curious to know what you are going to do with that ceiling tile…I love it!

    I also have to add that you are a true inspiration. You are in my thoughts and prayers…you and your family!

    MelissaReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 12:08 pm

    PamperingBeki - Whoa, controversy on The Macs’ blog?! Jess, you little rebel. ;-)

    Looks like a great time. Love seeing you pregnant!

    God bless you!ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 2:18 pm

    sarahross - Your wreaths turned out beautifully! I bet they smell just as lovely as they look.ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 3:33 pm

    SGreen - Love the wreaths! Looks like a great Christmas tradition to start!ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 3:53 pm

    hoosier68 - Oh please, Anonymous, get a life! Again, I’m wishing I lived in Kansas…..what interesting things you do. Baby Mac will be here before you know it and you won’t have time to worry about grammar :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 10, 2009 - 9:49 am

    jen christians - What gorgeous women you have in your family!!! I am so glad you got to spend some time with them doing some fun and crafty things. You are still in my prayers.ReplyCancel

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  • December 10, 2009 - 10:24 am

    Amanda - what a wonderful bunch of sister-in-laws (and SISTER) you got. I is pretty sure you’re family in general is just plain wonderful. And I know they is blessed to have you two!

    oops.ReplyCancel

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  • December 10, 2009 - 11:09 am

    6p010536a3bc2c970b - i would love to know where you did that, and what shop you went to. i love antique stores and all things old (like your tile!) also making a wreath sounds like a fun project for next year!ReplyCancel

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  • December 10, 2009 - 11:10 am

    Lindsay - ahhh….whenever I leave a post it puts all those numbers. i don’t get it. seriously, I might have to call someone. Lindsay.ReplyCancel

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  • December 10, 2009 - 3:20 pm

    Anonymous - OMG — I am laughing as I see you “corrected” your post! I needed the laugh today. You know, some people are just RUDE and miss the point completely. Love the blog and wishing you a wonderful Holiday and praying for Sweet Baby Mac!ReplyCancel

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  • December 10, 2009 - 3:22 pm

    Anonymous - What was it that Thumper said…”If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nothing at all?” True that, Anonymous!ReplyCancel

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  • January 6, 2010 - 11:13 pm

    lisa - can you tell us where that wreath making class was and the antique shops….would love to do that!

    thanks, you are doing exactly what God made you to be….i can “see” (or read) the fruits of the spirit thru you and your familyReplyCancel

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I had another appointment yesterday. Everything looked good. We are so thankful every time we walk out of the doctor’s office with good news. Praise God for a healthy pregnancy and baby! I am measuring a little ahead, but nothing is happening yet. I am feeling pretty good, just the normal 9 month waddling. I am also starting to feel quite uncomfortable. Who knows, maybe this little one will decide to come in 2009!
It is hard to believe that we are counting down the weeks instead of months now. I am starting to feel pretty anxious. Anxious because I have done NOTHING to get ready for this baby. And anxious because we are going to be holding our new son or daughter so soon. So many things have happened this year. It is hard to grasp it all.

It has been too hard to “get ready” for this baby like we did for Cora. We are going to use Cora’s bassinet in our room until we are emotionally ready to move this little one into Cora’s room. Right now the bassinet is full of a few gifts that people have given us and some newborn clothes for a boy and girl. Next week my mom is going to come over and we are going to go through Cora’s baby stuff and get out the newborn things we will need for Baby Mac. I don’t know if I am ready for that…but I guess it is time!

Cora’s room is just like she left it, except full of gifts that were sent to her in the hospital and after she went to heaven. My mom and I are going to clean it up a little, but leave everything the same. I think it will be easier to change things–like add some blue if we need to–when we are holding Baby Mac is our arms. It is so hard to know. For now we will deal with that later.
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7
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  • December 4, 2009 - 6:49 pm

    Paula Aspacher - I think you will be adding blue to Cora’s room. Cora needs a brother to help her daddy on the farm. He/she will always know about their big sister b/c you will keep her alive forever. You are the best parents in the world.ReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 6:51 pm

    Lisa - Thank you for that verse. Its one of my favorites! I am familiar with it in the NIV so it was refreshing to hear it in a different translation. You don’t know me and I’ve never commented on your blog, but wanted to tell you that I’ve been praying for your family since Cora was in the hospital. (Happened upon Meg Duerksens blog awhile ago and got to yours thru hers). Anyway, just wanted you to know that I continue to pray for you both and baby Mac.ReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 7:31 pm

    Todd and Courtney - so precious! And I am so excited to get the chenille burpies! Thank you thank you thank you for posting the time you were doing the listing :) Praying for you and your precious baby that will be here so soon…ReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 8:46 pm

    Cindy - I too have been reading since Cora was in the hospital. I am so encouraged by your faith and your journey. Sometimes your posts are so real that I can’t get through them without feeling the need to sob.
    Thank you so much for keeping up your blog. I know sometimes you probably don’t feel like it. Your story truly makes a difference in my life.
    I can’t wait to find out what your having! You people who like to be surprised have no idea what you do to the rest of us impatient people.
    I will be praying for you when you go through Cora’s clothes. May God somehow use it to bring blessing instead of sadness.ReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 9:12 pm

    Candice - I’m so happy everything is going well with the little one.

    It’s so hard to read about the tough things you have coming up too. I can only imagine how difficult it will be to go through Cora’s things. I think it is very precious that you will be using her room.

    Today’s quote was very appropriate.

    Hugs and prayers going out to your family!ReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 9:28 pm

    Kristi REDISKE - I love that Bible verse-thanks for using it. I have been praying for you all since Cora got sick also-I am amazed by the trust you have in the Lord and that you are letting Him guide you. It is so hard in difficult times to keep that trust and except that it is the right thing-our God knows why things happen-obviously Cora has touched people all around the world-what a special child-and you two are very special parents. I am excited to hear whether baby Mac is a boy or girl. I will keep you in my prayers and thanks for keeping us all posted on the progress.ReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 9:29 pm

    Marla Taviano - Aw, Jess. I can’t even imagine how tough this is.ReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 9:36 pm

    Alisha - I know you don’t know me, but I love reading your posts. You seem so amazing! Congrats on your upcoming baby!ReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 9:45 pm

    Trish - I am studying the book of Esther by Beth Moore! This study is AMAZING!

    I learned this week that the most common phrase said in the Bible, by God, Jesus, prophets, apostles, angels… was

    “Do not be afraid”

    Just thought you would like to know that!ReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 10:36 pm

    Mandi @ It's come to this - Continuing to pray for Baby Mac & you & Joel as you get ready for his/her arrival! Thank you for your open & honest heart … it lets know exactly how & when to pray:)ReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 10:46 pm

    texasinafrica - Praying that the peace of Christ will surround you at every moment.ReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 11:11 pm

    Kristi - I have been praying for you all and SO happy for you! It’s funny how you can think about people that you have never met before all the time. Cora’s story just touched my heart.
    I am so happy you both are blessed with this baby. I can’t wait to hear the happy news! :)
    KristiReplyCancel

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  • December 4, 2009 - 11:45 pm

    Miss G - Oh Jess! I am sitting here trying to imagine what it must be like. I feel like I’m having a hard time getting ready for my first born because everything is just so unknown (including the gender, like y’all) but to have to go through Cora’s things and not know if you’re ready for all that must be so uncertain and emotional! I do know that God’s timing is perfect even when we don’t understand it and He’s got all of this in control. That thought is what I cling to when things seem to be rushing or spinning out of my control. That sweet green blessings sign is Cora and new baby brother or sister in the stroller, isn’t it? That is absolutely wonderful! May God’s peace and richest blessings rest upon you and Joel and your mom and extended family as you go through this time of transition that you may or may not feel ready for. Praise God also for your mom coming over to help you! That is a gift. KellyReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 12:34 am

    Rebecca - Prayers as you go through all of the emotions of bringing a new baby home to a house without Cora. May God wrap his loving arms around you all.ReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 1:32 am

    Christina - You will do things at just the right time. Yes, what a blessing that your mom is there to help you. I pray that you will be calmed and comforted by the Spirit of our Mighty God as you count down the weeks and then the days until the arrival of the newest member of your family.
    I pray that you will be able to meditate on and celebrate the birth of Jesus this Advent season, as you anticipate the birth of your own child. I pray that knowing Him, and knowing His Father, your Father, will enable you to take those steps, one at a time each day.
    I think it’s sweet that your children will share a room…what a legacy precious Cora has left.ReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 2:48 am

    L ~ S - I can imagine how hard it will be to go through Cora’s things! I think your plan is a good one. It probably will be easier to deal with once you have met the new addition. Maybe it will be born on my birthday? Dec 31…ReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 4:55 am

    singing mama - You have been on heart so much lately and in my prayers too as you prepare to meet this little one
    luv DonnaReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 7:57 am

    Jerri - It must be so hard trying to be happy while still being sad…I can’t even imagine but I know that Baby Mac is blessed already and your sweet Cora will be watching down for her siblings arrival! I appreciate your blog and am inspired and awed by your amazing strength! May God meet your every need during this time!ReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 8:52 am

    Christina - Hugs & a prayer from Pooh’s Corner.ReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 9:25 am

    mommaof4wife2r - i love all the sweetness in this post…and love too. my fav part and what i cling to in the phil verse…”exceeds”. isn’t it totally awesome that he “exceeds”? i am so grateful…ReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 10:59 am

    Al's World - I have been quoting that verse all week! I kept overlooking the “with thanksgiving”, everytime the saddness is too much, try as hard as you can to be thankful for all God has given you. I can only imagine what you are going through and am praying for you every day.ReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 1:16 pm

    Ethansmom08 - I am praying for you and Joel as you both prepare for the arrival of your second little bundle of joy! Can’t wait to hear the news about Cora’s little brother or sister!ReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 1:17 pm

    A - I will be keeping you in my prayers the next month as you get ready for the new baby. I think it is okay that you haven’t done alot yet- I can’t imagine what it’s like to bring home your second baby without your first. I praise God for Joel being such a strong leader of your family- Cora and the new baby are so lucky to have you as parents!ReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 7:02 pm

    Kate - i know it is hard but soon you will have that little one in your arms & i really think that will help you heal:) Be strong!!!!ReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 7:40 pm

    Tricia - Still praying and so excited for your sweet family. Maybe baby Mac will in fact decide that Mommy and Daddy need an early blessing. ;)
    Enjoy this special time preparing with your mom.

    With love and prayers,
    XO*TriciaReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 7:42 pm

    Tricia - So excited for your sweet family during this special time. Perhaps baby Mac will decide to come and meet mommy and daddy early. ;)Extra Christmas blessings perhaps.
    Enjoy this special time of preparation with your mom.

    With love and prayers,
    XO*TriciaReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 9:52 pm

    PamperingBeki - Most of us can’t even begin to imagine the bizarre mix of emotions you have running through you.

    Prayers with you, Joel, and Baby Mac every single day!ReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 11:09 pm

    The Jones' - Prayin you up during this time. Love to you both,
    LizReplyCancel

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  • December 5, 2009 - 11:38 pm

    nate - second-cousin-to-be nate is hoping for 2009. see you guys at new years!ReplyCancel

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  • December 6, 2009 - 11:41 pm

    Lynn Jones - And He knows what a special heart it is that he is guarding when it comes to you, Jess. Your new little one is being anticipated by so many of us– how appropriate at this time of year. You are not alone, in so many respects. I will praying for peace and rest for you.ReplyCancel

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  • December 7, 2009 - 8:05 am

    Marsha - Praying for you! I can’t wait until you introduce us to new baby Mac!ReplyCancel

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  • December 7, 2009 - 10:37 am

    Mindee@ourfrontdoor - I love that you’re waiting to find out if it’s a boy or a girl – that adds so much fun to the birth. :)

    In the end, I think you’ll enjoy seeing Cora’s clothes on the baby. It will bring happy memories.ReplyCancel

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  • December 7, 2009 - 10:58 am

    Lauren Kelly - WOW, so much to look forward to but yet alot to go back and remember! His will is perfect though, just remember!!! :)ReplyCancel

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  • December 7, 2009 - 11:36 am

    purejoy - awwww. i can imagine the mixed feelings. i am so glad that the lord is blessing you with a new little life to journey with. so excited to see how all this works out, in god’s perfect plan.
    you are being prayed for, rest assured.
    many, many blessings as you waddle through these next few weeks…ReplyCancel

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  • December 7, 2009 - 12:29 pm

    Shannon - I will say a prayer for you while you go through Cora’s things. After my daughter passed away, I left her room the same for 3 years. I recently went through everything this summer before we moved. It was emotional and difficult, but I kept the important things-a few momentos and memories in my heart. God Bless.ReplyCancel

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  • December 7, 2009 - 7:32 pm

    carollai - a very exciting time. praying that as you continue to heal and work through cora’s things that you’ll be reminded of her love and cuteness and that God is with her now.ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 12:41 am

    Diana - Praying that the good Lord continues to surround you and Joel and Baby Mac with His Presence, to comfort and uplift you, to hold you in His loving arms. I’m sure God and Cora have smiles on their faces because they already know if you need blue or pink. Peace and love to you all!ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 12:42 am

    Kelly - Praying for you, your husband and baby Mac. I can’t wait to hear if the baby is a boy or girl!ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 10:56 am

    Karina - I thought about you today and wondered about Baby Mac. Thank you for posting an update!

    Cora’s dolls are so gorgeous. Are they from Etsy?

    Hugs to you as you waddle to the finish line!ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 6:10 pm

    Anonymous - Dear Jess, my prayers are every day with you and Joel, hoping that baby Mac get here soon so a little of that pain can go away. I know it will never be the same but it will fill your life with so much joy and happiness again.ReplyCancel

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  • December 8, 2009 - 7:36 pm

    Cherry Tree Lane - thinking of you all the time.ReplyCancel

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  • December 9, 2009 - 11:28 am

    La Familia Garcia - It’s nice to know that God is giving you the strength little by little as HE knows you need it! And grace to face each new day! How precious it will be to see it all come together.ReplyCancel

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