The Macs » Blog

I hate to start the week off with bad news.
But, I’ve got some.
I received an e-mail from the PayPal police this weekend.
That is never good.
Apparently my raffle violates the gambling section
under their acceptable use policy.
I didn’t know a raffle would be considered gambling.
But it is.
After all it is for a really good cause.
Doesn’t he know that?
The e-mail said that I had to remove my donation button immediately.
So, I called to see if there was any way around it.
There isn’t.
I tried.
Really hard.
I asked if I could have a disclaimer at the bottom of the raffle
that said that you didn’t have to donate to participate in the raffle.
Mr. PayPal police said no.
It is still considered gambling.
I asked if I could keep the donate button and have giveaways instead.
Totally separate.
People could still donate.
It would not be linked to the giveaway at all.
Surely giveaways aren’t considered gambling.
Mr. PayPal police said no again.
He said that in order to accept donations
I would have to get approved as a non-profit organization.
I tried.

So, now I need your help.
What should I do?

My guest room bed is covered with items that are supposed to be raffled.
There are some awesome things to giveaway.
And I know you want to see them too.
Do you know of another way I could accept donations?
Any ideas?

I would love to hear your suggestions.
After all, with how well Miss Calla has been doing,
she could be coming home soon.

Oh, and in case you are wondering.
All the donations received so far are fine.
We still have raised $2000 for Calla and her family.
And for that I am very thankful.

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  • Susan - I was going to suggest putting them for sale in your etsy store…but I assume there would be a fee involved and of course the paypal fees. However as fast as your store sells out, I’d have to say it would probably go over well, just not sure about the amount you would raise vs. the raffle. Ebay would be another option??? I hope someone has a good idea. So sad that you are in essence punished for doing good.ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - I’ve seen where people have “auctioned off” items to the highest bidder. You may want to consider doing that. It would still be a great way to raise money. Good Luck!ReplyCancel

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  • Erin - Can you auction them off?ReplyCancel

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  • E @ Oh! Apostrophe - What if there was a separate way for people to donate? Banks sometimes set up accounts/online sites for donations, no? Then people could comment saying that they had donated, and that would enter them? It wouldn’t involve PayPal so I don’t see how they could prevent it?ReplyCancel

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  • jen - paypal. grr. i just had the same issue with them over a benefit raffle i hosted for haiti. so sad that they wont help us help others. i ended up just asking for cash and check donations sent to me directly. that worked fine from family and friends who know that the money is going right where i say it will. hope you get something figured out!!ReplyCancel

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  • Deen Family - Sell them in your Etsy store!ReplyCancel

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  • Marla Taviano - I’d say just sell them at Cora’s store, but jack up the prices and donate the $ yourself.

    Would that work?ReplyCancel

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  • Miss Em - Ask this woman….http://our-journey-to-parenthood.blogspot.com/

    She had a fund raiser very similar to this for the adoption of her little girl.ReplyCancel

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  • Mere - This is my first time to comment on your precious blog! I have loved reading about your sweet family.
    I am giving you a link to another blog I follow. This family just adopted a little girl from Korea and had giveaways to raise money for adoption expenses. Adrienne might be able to tell you how she handled it.
    http://www.our-journey-to-parenthood.blogspot.com/ReplyCancel

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  • Beth - Check out http://www.chipin.com/overview

    Not sure if it would work for the raffle, but it might!ReplyCancel

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  • Susy M. - Do it the old fashioned way. We can send a check for a donation. Put everyone’s name in a hat that donated and whomever you pick wins.ReplyCancel

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  • Amanda - This comment has been removed by the author.ReplyCancel

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  • purejoy - i think you etsy store is a good solution. raise the prices by a percentage of what you would normally do, and designate them as a calla item.
    of course, there is the tax issue, but hopefully you can figure all of that out.
    sorry the paypal police has pulled you over.
    best wishes!ReplyCancel

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  • Johanna Simpson Baker - tack on a ‘shipping fee’ (a stamp) and a handling fee (photo printing cost) and send everyone a sticker or a little photo of Cora. That way, everyone who ‘bids’ is actually buying something. πŸ™‚ReplyCancel

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  • Mindy - I know The Design Girl (thedesigngirlblog.blogspot.com) has held raffles (for Haiti for example) and I believe she used Chip In (chipin.com) like someone else mentioned.ReplyCancel

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  • beckley - does the church have an account for them? have the money given/written to them, and people can comment and mail checks, like the church did for cora, right? Then, pick the comment at random and give it to them.

    or, go to prayforkate.com and ask them. they have people fundraising for them right now.

    or just set up a non-profit. maybe that’s something you will be called to in life? raising money for struggling babies? i don’t know. maybe? maybe cora could have her own non-profit?

    shalom-ReplyCancel

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  • Amanda - Use Chipin.com to raise money for an event.

    -OR-

    You know….you could use your etsy store and post $10 and $20 “gift certificates” for Calla. Once the raffle is over, change the remaining listings pictures/titles to the new raffle picture. Then you won’t be wasting money on unused listing fees and whatnot.

    I would list a reasonable amount of certificates based on what you’ve been receiving the past 3 raffles.

    I know there’s the listing fee and percentage Etsy takes but…..it’s small and it’s worth it. Calla might only get $19 instead of $20 but she’ll appreciate it.ReplyCancel

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  • Judy - Hmmm…I too was going to say Chipin.com I used it to raise money for a friend going to Malawi Africa. But I’m not entirely sure if it would be okay, because the chipin money actually does go into your paypal account. But I think Chipin is a third party that just uses Paypal. Definitely something to look into! Hope that helps! I love that sweet baby Calla!ReplyCancel

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  • Carla - I would second the etsy suggestion. The drawback of checks (or cheques as we’d write here :-)) is that it exludes overseas donors like myself. I like the idea of an auction either, could be fun :-). Its very frustrating that Paypal are being so obstructive. Its for a tiny baby girl, how heartless can they be????? I’ll keep thinking xReplyCancel

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  • Judy - It’s me again with one more comment about chipin! Make sure you’re Paypal account is verified before setting up a Chipin fund raiser. When you use Chipin you get a little bar graph widget that shows how much money you’ve raised and it won’t update automatically if your Paypal account isn’t verified (I learned that the hard way…people were giving money and it wasn’t showing up in my Chipin account because my Paypal account wasn’t verified with a bank account). Just giving you a heads up. The whole purpose of Chipin is to raise money for various charities, etc…so I don’t think you should have any problems using it.ReplyCancel

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  • Julia - Patrice Williams, Jonah’s mom,is having an auction for his first birthday and they have set up a blog to do it. You can check it out here… http://jonahsebauction.blogspot.com/

    You would have to do it as an auction rather than a blog, but it might work.ReplyCancel

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  • mymcmlife - I would sell the items through eBay so people can bid on the items as high as they’re willing to donate. Or sell “shares” or raffle tickets through etsy?ReplyCancel

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  • Kandis - Try Chip in!! Mckmama has used that one!! You could ask her how it works….www.mckmama.comReplyCancel

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  • Melissa - what about having a silent auction going through your personal email only, and the highest or closet bidder, what road you take, just transfers it through paypal as if you are just doing a simple transaction.ReplyCancel

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  • Savanna - I know that Baby Be Blessed (they have a website and a blog)….their button is on my blog (grits-savanna.blogspot.com) and Angie’s Smith’s as well……anyways, they do a raffle/giveaway of sorts on a regular basis. I would see how they set it up. It is very similar if not the exact same of what you are doing. They do one every month for a different child/baby in need.

    SavannaReplyCancel

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  • Megg - Oh no, I’m sorry about that! Why not try a silent auction? That way people can bid on the exact things they want? I’ve seen a few of those before.ReplyCancel

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  • Veggiemommy - I have donated through ChipIn several times. It seems the best way to go. As the organizer, you will have access to the email addresses of those who donate so you can still randomly select a winner from those. Good luck!ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - i’d say an auction too.ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - how about a silent auction?ReplyCancel

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  • Charity - oh my… Paypal can be very frustrating! So sad that you’re in trouble for doing good… grr.
    Well I (like at least 10 others :D) second the Etsy shop idea… or you could check out that Chipin.com – I have heard about that never used it though…
    God bless! hope you find a solution soon!ReplyCancel

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  • zoefeher - I agree with putthing them in your etsy store! Good luck!

    ZoeReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - open up Calls’s own etsy shop with all the itemsReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - Auction them on ebay. Make sure in the title that it makes reference to Calla or make a link to your seller’s list. It might be fun.
    Also, if people still want to donate maybe you can give an address (their church, maybe) where people who didn’t win the auction could still send donations.ReplyCancel

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  • Erica - are silent auctions legal?? that is such a shame!ReplyCancel

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  • Megan - I had wondered if paypal might make a stink about that.

    hope-for-haiti.blogspot.com has had similar issues. Check out this post where she talks about it. http://hope-for-haiti.blogspot.com/2010/01/update-on-paypal-situation.html

    maybe you can email the blog administrator there and see if she’s come to a resolution.ReplyCancel

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  • Emily - the auction idea is a good one! totally unfair for you to be punished!!! what is the world coming to… πŸ™ReplyCancel

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  • Trish - sell the remainder in Etsy! jack up the price to cover shipping and maybe keep a few girlie items out for that sweet baby you are raising money for πŸ™‚ReplyCancel

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  • Taylor & Laurel Cline - You could probably set up an account on smartyPig.com. It’s an online savings account that allows people to help save for your goal. You should also put a disclosure on your posts that states “No purchase or donation necessary to enter or to win. Odds of winning depends on the amount of eligible entries received.” (I work in banking and this is what we use for raffles we hold at the bank).ReplyCancel

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  • Molly - Oh no! Like someone else suggested, with Hope for Haiti, she used Google checkout. Not sure if that would work. Also, if you would consider it, you might able to just create a donations area and do the “raffles” as a giveaway? Not sure how that works legally, but lots of bloggers do giveaways and I am sure that most people would still donate.ReplyCancel

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  • Shannon - I immediately thought Ebay. Maybe you would get some people that have never heard of your blog– make sure you explain the story in the description. You could post the item number (link) on your blog so all of us can find the items quickly!!ReplyCancel

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  • A Dusty Frame - It’s not just paypal. Raffles are highly regulated by state law too.
    Your raffle (and raffles I see on other blogs) very likely violate state law.

    Lots of people don’t realize that, but at least it was only paypal contacting you!ReplyCancel

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  • Holli Taylor - Whatever you end up doing let us know. And if you decide to do an auction coukd you maybe do a couple of seperate ones so more people could end up getting stuff.ReplyCancel

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  • merlin - Well, when The RustedChain sold “blessed” necklaces, a 10$ donation was made to Haiti for each necklace sold. Could you sell the items and donate the proceeds?
    Not nearly as much fun, but you have lots of blogging folks who want to help Calla.

    Can we just freely donate to the paypal button for Calla with no chance of winning anythig in return? Just a goodwill offering so to speak. I think people would.

    Is there a blogging friend with everything set up “legally” that could run your Cora’s for Calla program until all of the items have been given/donated away?

    OK that’s my 2 cents worth. I KNOW that there is going to be a way to keep Cora helping Calla.ReplyCancel

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  • Townsend Crew - How about a daily auction and the item goes the the highest bidder… who also has to leave a lovely, warm words of encouragement to you and/or Breezyfarm…

    Don’t be discouraged. Your good work is all good.ReplyCancel

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  • Niki @ Southern Baby Boutique - As one of the stores that donated, I don’t like the idea of an auction, because 1 person who has more money that someone else could easily get it, where as a raffle, chances of receiving the prize are a little more spread out and seem fair. But I do like the Etsy store “gift certificate for Calla” or the chipin.com ideasReplyCancel

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  • Joy - I’m not sure if anyone has already spoke about this as I haven’t read through the comments. But, Jenny with Simply Delightful Designs whom just hosted a raffle Hope for Haiti. They (paypal) did the same thing to her. She tried google checkout. You may get more information from her?
    jenny@ simplydelightfuldesigns dot comReplyCancel

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  • kimalli1 - Hi.

    Can you use ChipIn? Are you familiar at all with this blog? http://our-journey-to-parenthood.blogspot.com/

    They just adopted a little girl from Korea, and in order to raise some of the money required for the adoption, they did raffles and I believe they used ChipIn rather than PayPal. The woman that writes that blog seems like the sweetest, most open person you could ever meet. I am sure she could offer you some suggestions. (Nice of me to volunteer someone else to help, I know. But this is definitely not my area of expertise- I don’t even have a blog!) Good luck!
    -KimReplyCancel

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  • Heather | Cookie Mondays - can you take donations via their church?ReplyCancel

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  • Auntie Mip - I am sure thsi has been said…how about Esty???ReplyCancel

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  • Beki - TheRustedChain - Jess that stinks.

    You won’t be able to sell them in your etsy shop. Etsy doesn’t allow “combined” shops, and essentially that’s what it would be. They only allow the artist/creator, and possibly a handful of helpers to list in one shop. But I’m afraid the etsy police would get you if you sold there.

    I have done many charity auctions on ebay. BUT you can’t use the word “charity” in your title or listing unless it’s being contributed to a registered non-profit.

    But I think you could still put groups of things up on ebay with the search term “Calla” and people would know that the money was being donated. You just have to be careful with the wording.

    I was able to raise $3000 to help Haiti with my Blessed necklaces, but people just had to trust that I was sending the money to where I said I would. (Which I did, of course.) I think that might be the case here, wherever you decide to do it. People will just have to trust that the money is going to where you say it will. And if they follow your blog and are willing to help the Johnsons, I’m sure they know that you’re honest and will follow through.ReplyCancel

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  • Dani - I have no idea, but check with Adrienne here; http://www.our-journey-to-parenthood.blogspot.com/

    She did raffles and giveaways to bring her daughter home from Korea.

    Good luck.ReplyCancel

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  • Lindsay - I’m not sure if it’s because they’ve changed their policies, but I know that MckMama used them for her canon giveaway a year ago via the chipin program. http://www.chipin.com – worth a shot?ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - My only idea is a P.O. box.

    I really, really hope that if I ever have trouble with paypal – say I win an auction and do not receive the merchandise – they are as interested in helping with things like that.

    :::rolling eyes:::ReplyCancel

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  • Todd and Courtney - I like the etsy idea and set up gift certificates. I really like that idea and it’s super easy. With the gift certificates, just have a ton of the different amounts. Open then for a week and then randomly draw an email. I think that’d be soooo easy! πŸ™‚ReplyCancel

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  • It's just Mommer - What about a silent auction? Post an item and people could bid through their comments. Would Mr Paypal allow that?ReplyCancel

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  • Dina - What if people ‘gifted’ the money to you through paypal using your email address? Is that still ‘illegal’?ReplyCancel

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  • Robin in Benton - I hate stupid rules like this – they make it hard to do nice things like you are doing. I guess my best suggestion would be using your etsy store too. It shouldn’t be so hard!ReplyCancel

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  • Abby - What about having people bid on the group of items on ebay? Get an ebay account and post the items on there…give us all the link to your ebay store and see how much each group of items goes for…ReplyCancel

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  • The Straub Family - Hey Jess,
    I sent you a couple of emails over the past two weeks letting you know the SAME cruddy thing happened to me and my fundraising event for sweet Lilly – a three year old – my daughter’s best friend – who just had brain surgery.
    Is it not the SCARIEST thing ever to get that email?!?!
    I think my heart fell out of my chest for a second!
    GAMBLING???
    REALLY???
    I removed my donation button and ended my raffle a week early.
    I would suggest putting a button up on your blog inviting people to contact you about making donations – and then giving them a mailing address for sending checks directly to Ian & Julie.
    My biggest fear was that I was going to get into legal trouble…I have not heard anything else, thankfully.
    Also, why not list all of your items (with approval from the donors) in your shop for sale….or better yet…list them for sale on your BLOG to avoid any more fees?
    I wish you the best of luck…I’ve been following yours and Julies blogs for over a year….I feel like I know you all!
    Hugs & Prayers,
    Jill
    http://www.zingotots.blogspot.com
    …oops, I see I am signed in as Lilly’s mom because I just posted Lilly’s update for her on her own blog!ReplyCancel

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  • The Straub Family - …one more thing..
    I see alot of folks are suggesting ChipIn.
    I was using ChipIn for my raffle….and I still got shut down..because the payments still go through Paypal.ReplyCancel

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  • nikki - go to babybeblesseddolls.com and then at the bottom there is a link to their blog and to email them….each month they set up a chip in for a different person once to click the chip in to give you forward that to them and they enter you to win something. You could email them to get more specifics but I’m sure it would work for you…they are super sweet ladies and would be thrilled to help you figure it out.ReplyCancel

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  • Ginger - Hey Jess… I follow Young House Love (http://www.younghouselove.com/) and they have a ton of “fab freebie” giveaways on their blog. You might check with them to see what they do. They’re great about communication. πŸ™‚ Hope you find a simple solution! Love ya πŸ™‚ReplyCancel

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  • Stef - I have no ideas, but I’m praying!!ReplyCancel

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  • merlin - You could think REALLY BIG and see this as a legacy for Cora and set up a charity in her name…..ReplyCancel

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  • laura - I really like the idea of making the purchase of a photo of Cala & those names being put into the raffle. Also like the suggestions that there has to be a way around this.
    You are doing so much good for Baby Calla’s family.
    Bless you & your family.ReplyCancel

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  • Glittergirl - I am from the UK so you would need to check this out but could you have participants answer a simple question as well? I think if some sort of “skill” is demonstrated it is no longer classed as gambling. I think you would also probably need a disclaimer stating that no donation was necessary to enter…
    Hope you get it sorted.
    Good luckReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - Hi Jess,

    I have had a lot of trouble with paypal in recent months. I hosted a fundraising ball to raise money for a charity supporting bone marrow transplant patients in honour of a dear friend going through one.

    Paypal were VERY quick to put a hold on my account and not so fast to help me sort it out am afraid. It was a frustrating few months of back and forward emails, me having to scan and send a ton of documents – including having to prove I was using the money in the way intended.

    It took me four months to have the limitations lifted and to withdraw the money. Such a drama.

    Can you leave the donate button if it’s not a raffle? I am sure that your blog followers will still support Cora’s for Calla. I also love the idea of selling through your etsy store, if this is possible.

    Good luck!
    xo Jen, Australia
    jenvangemert@hotmail.comReplyCancel

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  • JD - Paypal has the option of sending money as a “gift.”

    Couldn’t you just accept “gifts” on behalf of Calla and then in return you could send a “gift” to someone in return?

    Don’t call it a raffle. Don’t call them prizes. It’s all just a bunch of people exchanging gifts.ReplyCancel

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  • Audrey - There are other paypal-like sites that you can use to send/receive money in a secure manner. Paypal is notorious for this for this sort of goofiness…I’m sorry that you got “caught.”ReplyCancel

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  • Donna H - As someone else mentioned, you can set up a donation account at a bank or credit union in the childs name for her needs. People can donate directly to that account. (wink wink πŸ™‚ You would then want to thank everyone who donated and you would get a list of the names of all who donated. You could use the list to put all of those people in a drawing, not a raffle, and GIVE away the clothes.

    When I saw that you were doing a raffle I was concerned but I don’t know the laws in your state.

    The other option is to set up a foundation in Cora’s name and then you can give to whomever you like.

    It may work out to be something bigger than any of us planned.ReplyCancel

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  • Donna H - PS There is no way to call it something other than a raffle and still raffle. State and Federal gaming laws are strict and breaking those laws can be a criminal offense. Not everyone has the good intentions of the Macs and the law is the law. Paypal is right.ReplyCancel

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  • Outre Beauty Bistro - How about just auctioning the stuff of on ebay and linking your auctions with your blog? Most people have an account on Ebay. After fees, that would be your donation amount. There is always a way! We just have to find it! XOReplyCancel

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  • Outre Beauty Bistro - Or, doing what Jen said and having people send the money straight to you…that is no different than paypal…you are ultimitaley in control of where both goes. I am 100 percent sure Jess, that everybody would be fine with that. You are a strong christian, you proved yourself with cora’s place as far as donations, and everybody’s knows you have a heart for others. I would have them send it to you and then do the comment. ??ReplyCancel

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  • Tsquared417 - Have you heard of chipin.com? I used that last year for a raffle….they can use a credit card or pay pal…ReplyCancel

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  • L ~ S - I did not read all the good suggestions, but one I thought of is that you put a ‘price’ on them, but it it more a suggested donation, so someone can ‘buy’ it and then pay whatever amount they want…ReplyCancel

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  • Sarah G - Stephanie of A Daily Scoop (http://adailyscoop.blogspot.com/) recently did an auction to benefit a family in need and it seemed to run pretty smoothly. You could contact her to learn more about how she handled it but I’m pretty sure PayPal wasn’t involved. Good luck!ReplyCancel

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  • The Evans Family - Use a chip in button instead here is the link:

    http://www.chipin.com/overview

    Good luckReplyCancel

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  • Ceri - What about Calla’s family? Do they have a pay pal account? Then people could gift the money directly to them??
    “You could manage the paypal account to help Calla’s family to help send out thank yous” ;)and privately send that thank you out. And it would be your new hobby for a while to Post a picture of “whats on the bed in your guest room this week”ReplyCancel

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  • amazeingteacher - i’ve been trying to find the “clause” in their policy and it may help others…
    Lottery tickets – Include the purchase or sale of any opportunity to participate in a raffle, drawing, sweepstake, pool, or any other form of game or contest involving the distribution of prizes or monetary compensation.

    it is my understanding that you can use chipin but you cannot give any gift/ticket/prize for people contributing. does anyone have another understanding of this?ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - How about a live auction for those of us who are local. Pretty sure we could round up more donations, an auctioneer and some cookies and punch. It would give those who are close to them a chance to give items, mingle together and have a good time for a great cause.ReplyCancel

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  • Michelle - Your church is non profit and they helped you setup a way to donate for the playground. Maybe they can setup a seperate fund and you can continue to help people who need it that way. Maybe they can setup a silent auction for the items and the money goes into that fund.ReplyCancel

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  • momof3darlings - I’ve been a part of MANY raffles for good causes! We just had each person send the money for a raffle chance to a certain PayPal address. In the comment section, they would list it as “donation” and then YOU just take all the names, and draw them out of a hat. EASY!

    We’ve done this many times before.ReplyCancel

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  • Nan - How hard is it to get registered as a non-profit? Cora’s could go public as a non-profit support for families of sick children! I’m sure that’s way easier said than done though.

    What about listing them as auctions on Ebay with the additional information always included that all proceeds go to help families of sick kids?ReplyCancel

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  • Kara - hyenacart.com does that! I belong to a cloth diaper board that does some raffles and such for Mamas in need.
    Check it out?ReplyCancel

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  • Karina - I would absolutely shop like mad at your store if you put them there. Would that work? That’s how I found you, after all. I bought Etsy stuff that went to fund Cora’s playground.ReplyCancel

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  • Suesan - I was going to also say auction as a suggestion, I know nothing about the legalities but I saw this recently. http://jonahsebauction.blogspot.com/
    Good luck!ReplyCancel

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  • Kari and Robert - What if you were to set up a Calla Shop much like in the beginning for Cora’s Playground. Then people would still be buying items and the money would still be going to Calla?ReplyCancel

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  • Teresa Peschke - I agree with selling it on etsy, just include the price of listing the item and the amount paypal will take in the price that way everything can go to calla.ReplyCancel

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  • KyndraRenae - I dont see how a raffle is gambling when it’s going to a charitable cause. I dont’ know what you could do. What about people who set up the buckets in stores and stuff. They’re not an organization, it’s basically the same thing. I don’t know what you could do. Wish I could help. I think it’s great what you are doing to help calla.ReplyCancel

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  • Beki - TheRustedChain - I think you’re probably on top of this but one more suggestion.

    I just opened a shop at bigcartel.com. It’s quite easy, and faster to list items than etsy. There are no fees! AND people don’t have to sign up to purchase. They just click “buy” and it prompts them to pay through paypal, so they don’t need to register with a new site or anything.

    So far I’m loving it. There are record companies, handmade sellers, and lots of others that use it and I think it could work great with Cora’s for Calla.ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - Just read this and thought of your predicament with PayPal. I may be really late in the game with this since you already have so many comments!

    http://mycrazyadoption.org/crazy-fundraiser-for-a-mission-trip?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+MyCrazyAdoption+%28My+Crazy+Adoption%29

    Scroll down to the bottom where she writes about “My Crazy Idea” which is about an ipod giveway. She says that you can write “Donate to enter a giveway.” That way you aren’t labeled as a gambler. Hope it helps!ReplyCancel

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  • Lisa Daniels - I was listening to the Kim Komando show, and she brought this issue up. Here is a link to a possible answer to your situation. (You may have found another answer, but I didn’t read all the responses)
    You don’t have to be a non-profit, but your “cause” has to be approved. Give it a look. If you haven’t found another situation, I hope it works for you!!! :0)

    Keeping up with your family,
    Lisa & Daniels’ FamilyReplyCancel

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  • Lisa Daniels - Duh…forgot the link…

    http://www.kickstarter.com/start

    They require 5% if the amount is reached or exceeded though. It’s a service, so no free lunch.

    LisaReplyCancel

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The winner of giveaway #3 is…
Becki (February 12 @ 7:05 am)
Congratulations Becki!
I will be e-mailing you soon so that we can get your package in the mail.

Thank youΒ again for giving so generously.
We have raisedΒ $2000.00Β for Calla and her family.

Amazing!
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  • Jessica Faith - Yeah!! Praying!ReplyCancel

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  • carla - Fantastic fundraising, well done you CReplyCancel

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  • 4torock - Yeah!! Way to go:DReplyCancel

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  • SouthernGalsBoutique - GREAT job on the fundraising!!!! That is AWESOME!!!!!ReplyCancel

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  • Bec - Over Christmas, Cake Wrecks did a donation thing and I don’t think they used paypal so you could email Jen over there- http://cakewrecks.blogspot.com

    or, can you create a new paypal account and not have anything about the raffle/donations? Or does paypal make them leave a description of why the money is being put into the account? Like they could just say babysitting or cleaning services or something πŸ™‚ Then have them leave a comment on the blog to let you know they donated to be entered into the raffle that way?ReplyCancel

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Where has time gone?
My little Levi will be six weeks old tomorrow.
I thought I should post this before two months creeps up on me.
He is already doing things like smiling and sleeping 6-8 hours at night.
Way to go Levi!

We love you so much Levi. Although we are still missing your sister everyday, you have brought so much love and laughter to our house again. You are such an incredible blessing to us. Here are some things I want to remember about your first month:

You grew out of your newborn diapers the first week you were home. Β You are now in size 1.

You also grew out of your newborn clothes. You are a growing boy! You are wearing 0-3 month clothes and I don’t know how long you will last in those.
You are starting to like your baths. No more screaming!
I love when you stare at me with those big, deep blue eyes.Β 
You are a spit up baby. Definitely not as bad as your sister, but my piles of laundry are multiplying.
You are starting to give us little half smiles. I think you will be smiling in no time.
You are still sleeping in your bassinet in our room. You wake up every 3-4 hours at night, but you are a good sleeper.
You have the hiccups ALL the time, just like when you were in mama’s tummy.
You are a true boy. Very noisy. You are definitely not a quiet baby and you are always grunting. I think you like to make your presence known.

At one month you are weighing in at 11 pounds 4 ounces. Obviously you are a good eater. You weren’t a big fan of getting stripped down to be weighed. You let the nurse know by peeing all over her. Β Oops!

I love you sweet baby boy.

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  • Kat - He is so precious!!!ReplyCancel

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  • Tiffany - I’ve never commented on your before but your family is such an amazing family. Cora and My son Samuel are the exact same age down to their birth date. I found your blog last year and have followed your journey. You’ve given me so much strength. Your story is amazing and I’m so glad the Lord has blessed you with Levi.ReplyCancel

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  • Lindy - What a handsome little man! I love the picture of him sleeping on your shoulder. I have a new grandson coming to visit next week. He is 2 months and I can’t wait to squeeze him. Bless you all!ReplyCancel

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  • Debbie S. - So sweet!!ReplyCancel

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  • Devon - aw, he is adorable…

    my little premie girl is 4.5 months old and weighs 11 pounds! she seems huge to me but i guess not…lol!

    i always think of your cora cuz my twin boys share her birthday…they live in heaven with cora now too.ReplyCancel

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  • The Parker's - He is adorable. He also looks like a little boy in the face. I know it sounds funny, but you know how you can’t tell w/ some babies? No question w/ Levi! I also hear ya about how little boys are so noisy! My daughter was so quiet, but my little guy is constantly making noise. Congratulations again!!ReplyCancel

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  • Sarah - He is so precious, Jess!ReplyCancel

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  • Julie - Such a beautiful baby boy!ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - He is so cute, I’m so happy for you guys you deserve this and a lot more, may God always bless him.

    EldaReplyCancel

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  • The Sweigart Family - He looks a little like Esther in the one in the blue jacket. So sweet. I can’t believe how big he’s getting!ReplyCancel

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  • Nikki B - He is so incredibly gorgeous!ReplyCancel

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  • Robin - Your line about him bringing laughter into your home brought tears to my eyes. I have been praying for your family, and there is just something about a baby that is so joyful. I am glad he is there bringing you some much needed joy.ReplyCancel

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  • onlymehere - He is such an adorable bundle of blessings for you! I wish there had been blogging when my kids were little. What a wonderful memory album you have of these special moments with your children. Keep it up!ReplyCancel

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  • SouthernGalsBoutique - He is soooo cute!!! Makes me miss the baby stage! πŸ™‚ReplyCancel

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  • merlin - OK, my baby years are past, I have to bide my time for grandkids in the very far, distant future, BUT when I look at these photos of Levi, every cell in my body screams: I want him, I want that baby. Forgive me, please.

    I even dragged my husband to the computer, and he agrees, Levi is a baby like no other.

    But no, I can’t have Levi and there won’t be more babies. It is OK though, I can enjoy Levi through your blog, be happy for you, pray for him, and have a sweet spot for him in my heart.

    These photos make me feel JOY!
    Thank you.ReplyCancel

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  • gwswenson - Love, love, love, love, love your darling Levi!! What a sweetheart!! Thank you for the update, Jess. Always thinking of your lovely family.ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - Happy Valentine’s Day — and what a great post to kick off the weekend, Congratulations again on your son. You are always in my prayers.ReplyCancel

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  • It's just Mommer - What a sweet boy!ReplyCancel

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  • jen christians - Oh Jess,
    He is absolutely beautiful… I could look at those pictures all day. Precious. he makes me long to hold a newborn again. There is certainly nothing like a sweet baby, and I think God made your little man extra sweet.ReplyCancel

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  • meg duerksen - he’s so cute!
    i still have to get your present to you! since i missed the party. it was great chatting with you in the freezer section last week. πŸ™‚

    see you soon i hope!ReplyCancel

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  • Nan - What a cutie patootie!ReplyCancel

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  • Alex and Jill - He is such a beautiful baby!!ReplyCancel

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  • Beki - TheRustedChain - Jess, he is YUMMY!!

    (And you look so much like your mom in that picture.)ReplyCancel

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  • Kelly - Levi is absolutely precious, and I can’t believe it’s already been 6 weeks since you had him! My daughter had the hiccups a lot too when she was a baby. You might have heard of this but Little Tummies makes something called Gripe Water. You can get it in the childrens section at the pharmacy (near the gas drops). It’s amazing, and takes hiccups away in an instant. Just thought I would pass a recommendation along.ReplyCancel

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  • susy - God Bless you all!ReplyCancel

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  • Stef - he’s so cute, looks so cuddly and positively dreamy. Makes me want another boy….ReplyCancel

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  • Michelle - Wow six weeks… seems like only three. Scary when time not only flies for mommy but all the other people too. The pictures are so precious, thank you for sharing them.ReplyCancel

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  • Yankee Mama - He is such a gorgeous baby!!!!!!!!!!! Makes me want another!ReplyCancel

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  • Cori - What a beautiful little guy! You take wonderful pictures of him.ReplyCancel

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  • Diana - Mr. Levi is a truly handsome little man… so special and sweet! Love every one of those photos… look at his beautiful eyes! And he’s sure a-growing fast already!

    Praying bountiful good blessings on you guys!

    β™₯ReplyCancel

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  • Danielle - He is so absolutely gorgeous I can’t stand it! πŸ™‚ReplyCancel

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  • twolittletots - can’t believe he is a month old…so cute!ReplyCancel

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  • Whimsical Creations - He is just precious!!ReplyCancel

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  • Emily - I’m a first time commenter as well but had to say that having a boy is SO fun! I have a boy myself and where I live I feel like I’m the ONLY one with a son so I’m thankful that you have little Levi so I can hear some boy stories πŸ˜‰ He’s precious!!!
    http://www.emilyandzachparker.blogspot.comReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - What a precious baby boy.
    You are a beautiful family, inside and out!! πŸ™‚

    Krissy Hunecke
    Batavia,ILReplyCancel

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  • Marianne - Been reading your blog for awhile, but not sure if I ever commented. You and your husband are inspiring! And by the way, you make beautiful children!ReplyCancel

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  • Wenbren Explains It All - what a wonderful gift the lord has given you!!I’m so excited that you guys had a baby, sooooo happy to find out, I’m just a stranger, but I have followed you guys for a while, just thought I should say how I’m feeling:)ReplyCancel

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  • Courtney - He is so SWEET!!ReplyCancel

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  • Lauren Kelly - He is so handsome. Going to be a hearbreaker!!!! πŸ™‚ReplyCancel

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  • Baylee and Blair's page - He is just the sweetest baby!!! SO cute and so big!

    Hugs – TiffanyReplyCancel

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  • Stacie - he is so beautiful!ReplyCancel

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  • Tressa - He is so precious! I LOVE the pic of you and him together! AMAZING! I am so glad he is a healthy growing boy!
    TressaReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - One other thing Levi is doing at one month?? Still being the cutest baby I have ever seen.
    h.o.l.y. c.o.w. is he cute!ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - He is beautiful! Even though I only “know” you from your blog and only saw Cora in pictures I definitely think little Levi has the same eyes as Cora in the 2nd from the last picture. You and Joel are such an inspiration. You embody Jesus’ grace and strength.ReplyCancel

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  • Christina - He is such a beautiful baby boy. What a face. He looks mature! I love the pictures with each of you…keep taking those! My husband and I were just noticing that we don’t have pictures of us with the kids. So, don’t stop doing that! πŸ™‚ReplyCancel

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  • Rambling Girl - Gift from God! Such a beautiful baby and his big sister, Cora is watching over Levi.

    I had a premmie and went trough a scare when she was born but happy she is a helathy five year girl today.ReplyCancel

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  • Geets - May God richly bless you and your beautiful son.ReplyCancel

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  • tara - he is just luscious and looks so so snuggly too! i know you guys are enjoying every tiny second with your new little man! bless your adorable family!ReplyCancel

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  • Tara - absolutely precious!ReplyCancel

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  • mommaof4wife2r - oh my word…he is precious! precious!ReplyCancel

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I think the giveaways keep getting better and better.
And Calla is growing, growing, growing.
Thank you for joining me in praying for the Johnsons.

Giveaway #3
This is what you will win:

Cora’s Dress – 3 months (long sleeve)

Flannel Baby Blanket

Nursing Cover & Burpie

Layered Bow & Crocheted Hat

Baby Girl & Baby Boy Blankets
Madivia Designs

Flower Onesie – 9-12 months

Camouflage Bow

Pink & Black Bow Set

Earrings

Bracelet
(This is my cousin’s new shop. She has great jewelry!)

Ruffle Bib

Felt Flower Headband

Thank you to the many people who have donated items for Cora’s for Calla.
My mailbox has been overflowing!

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Never look ahead to the changes and challenges of this life in fear. Β Instead, as they arise look at them with the full assurance that God, whose you are, will deliver you out of them. Β Hasn’t He kept you safe up to now? So hold His loving hand tightly and He will lead you safely through all things. And when you cannot stand, He will carry you in His arms.

Do not look ahead to what may happen tomorrow. The same everlasting Father who cares for you today will take care of you tomorrow and every day. Either He will shield you from suffering or He will give you His unwavering strength that you may bear it. Be at peace, then, and set aside all anxious thoughts and worries.

Francis de Sales

One year.
It is hard to believe my baby has been gone for that long.
On one hand it seems like it has been forever since I last got to hold her. I hate that feeling. But on another hand it seems like just yesterday we learned of her cancer and started fighting for her life. Either way, my heart aches today in a way that I can’t even describe to you.
It has been a year of sorrow. A year that I would have never chosen to walk through. A year that I could not have even begun to imagine. A year that I really didn’t think I could even live through. But in the deep darkness, the Lord gave us, and continues to give us, His unwavering strength to bear each day. And on those days when I didn’t think I could stand, He was always faithful to carry me. The same was true even today, a day I have been dreading for weeks.
So, here we are on Cora’s heavenly anniversary. Praising God that she is in His arms and that we can live in HOPE of seeing her again. But, at the same time missing Cora like crazy.
What do you do on a day like today?
Honestly, we don’t even know. Nothing seems quite right.

We decided to be low key today. Unfortunately Joel had to work part of the day, but the rest of the day we just spent together as a family. We gave our little Levi lots of extra hugs. He is such a blessing and was a wonderful distraction for us today.

Last night I made some yummy cupcakes cupcakes. This is becoming a trend for me. Cupcakes must make me feel a little better when I am sad. Sweets always make things better, right? I ate three today just in case.

I made lots of cupcakes. We decided that as we remembered our sweet Cora today, we wanted to take time to thank the many people who took such good care of her while she was sick. While we were in the hospital with Cora we met so many amazing people. During an incredibly horrific time in our lives, they made us feel so loved and taken care of. They loved Cora so well.
After Cora died we didn’t get a chance to tell them thank you. We thought today would be the perfect day to do just that.

I packaged up the cupcakes and attached beaded hearts with thank you tags. Joel and I took a few to Newton today. It was “something” we could do as we remembered Cora today. The rest were delivered to the hospital by a friend. We weren’t feeling up to walking back into the hospital today.Β 
We hung out around the house this afternoon. And we went out to eat this evening. That was our day. Nothing special. It may look different next year. But, as I write this we have almost made it through Cora’s first heavenly anniversary.Β 
Just like every other day this past year, we have felt so loved today. We can’t believe how many people remembered the significance of this day. We have had so many cards, e-mails, and phone calls from people just to remind us that we are loved and prayed for. You all have been such an encouragement to us today. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!
Thank you for continuing this journey with us. We are thankful for how far the Lord has brought us this year–a year we didn’t know if we could survive–and anticipating what He has in store for our family in the year to come!


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  • Anonymous - Happy Birthday, Cora! I know your mommy and daddy must miss you something terrible, but I’m sure your sweet baby brother is giving them lots of sweet smiles and snuggles for you.

    What an incredible family! God bless!ReplyCancel

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  • Momma H - You ARE loved and prayed for – by people you don’t even know, or know very little. Your journey has impacted so many lives, and I see you as a living example of the passage you started this blog with.
    We all thank God for you and for sweet Cora’s life, short though it was. Praise the Lord that she is with Him and you can look forward and not just back. Back is too painful and it is past. Forward – to heaven – when we finally get there – will be so beautiful and bright. Thank God for His hope and love to carry you through!ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - we’ve been praying for you all today (you and your families)…i wish i could say something that would lighten your hearts load so i will just pray that Jesus will be the lifter of you hearts and heads as you put your heads on your pillows tonight…-meghanReplyCancel

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  • Launa - On our knees for you all tonight!ReplyCancel

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  • Mindy M. Harris - my little wilder, 18 months had to be in the hospital to have a bone scan, and such a minor procedure completely crumbled my heart. the love of a parent towards his child is inconceivable, indescribable. i’m sure Jesus would speak the same of us.
    thank you for your words, for bringing truth to the pages of the internet. cora has much to be proud of.
    lots of love from your friend “once removed” ha!ReplyCancel

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  • Rachel E. - What an incredibly selfless thing to do today. Praying for you and Joel tonight.ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - I can honestly say, there hasn’t been a day that has passed that you/Joel or Cora haven’t been thought about or prayed for by my family. My 23 month old daughter has a doll I’ve named Cora. She reminds me to pray for you and hold my daughter (and son) a little tighter. May God continue to be glorified through you and Joel.ReplyCancel

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  • Megan - I’ve thought of and prayed for your family often over the course of the last year, and I will continue.ReplyCancel

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  • Heather - Oh how my heart aches for you. I still remember that day when I sat down to read the latest update on Cora and my heart literally stopped and a short wail escaped my mouth. I just couldn’t believe it. My heart broke for you, it still does. And this coming from someone who has never met you or Cora. I can’t even begin to imagine being in your shoes. I continue to pray for you guys and I pray our Lord will wrap you in His arms and bath you in His everlasting love. Love and prayers to you and Joel <3
    Heather~ On the HomefrontReplyCancel

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  • Kristi - I just want you to know that even though we have never met, I think about Cora and you all EVERYDAY! Your in my prayers. God bless your precious little Levi. πŸ™‚
    KristiReplyCancel

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  • Kristin - What a beautiful way to celebrate the life of your sweet girl. There IS something about cupcakes that makes me smile. May you continue to find strength in God and one another.ReplyCancel

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  • mel @ the larson lingo - Thinking of you & Praying for you as you remember your sweet Cora. May God continue to show His love to you & your family.
    p.s. Love the cupcake idea, that is so thoughtful & kind of you.ReplyCancel

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  • Sue - Well, as I sit here and type this message from so many miles away, it’s 8:49 on Tuesday morning on 9 February and Cora’s anniversary day will be over. I’m sure that as you wake up today to face this new day, you’ll feel lighter and brighter. Kids are such a blessing and Levi is one special little guy!!ReplyCancel

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  • Kylie and crew. - Praying for you….what a sweet treasure you have stored up in heaven…although not the path you would have chosen, she is there and will be when you get to heaven. Thanks for continuing to share and be open. You both have a mighty call on your life (not because of your loss but because of your hearts).ReplyCancel

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  • Stef - I prayed for you over and over again today. We celebrated my son’s 5th birthday on the 6th and as we sang Happy Birthday to him, my heart broke for you.

    Your joy and trust in the Lord is infectious and I am so thankful to know you via your blog πŸ™‚
    May this new year be one of much healing, peace and pressing on.ReplyCancel

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  • Lara - I have been reading your blog for a little while. You inspire me. That short verse by Francis de Sales spoke to me. You encourage me with your strength. Thank you. I will never understand loosing a child, but I do know this, your family is amazing. Thank you for sharing Cora’s story. I am blessed knowing there are such good people out there who can turn to God in their most troubled times. May God Bless you in your heartache. I want you to know that I KNOW you will see Cora again…my faith has taught me that. Thank you again for sharing your faith.ReplyCancel

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  • JJC - just wanted you to know that i still think about you almost every day even though we’ve never met. thank you so much for sharing cora with us and for being honest about your grief. it reminds me to have just a little more patience and to live a little more in the moment with my little one who is just 3 days older than your sweet cora.ReplyCancel

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  • cara - I just read this and couldn’t not comment…and I’ll say a prayer for your lovely family tonight. What a hard day to go through, even knowing Cora is so happy, but just missing her so much…You all have touched me, and I do check in on your blog. You are so creative Jess!! I love creating things, mostly out of fabric (really, I like buying fabric πŸ™‚ ), and making things look pretty. Your pictures are wonderful, and the things you make do inspire me, thank you! Your baby boy is just precious, I am so glad you have him! I have 4 young kids, and for some reason, when I see pictures of your Cora, she reminds me of my youngest…Anyway…just know people are praying all over for you all…(I’m up here in Alaska..)ReplyCancel

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  • dg darling - I cried today just as I did a year ago when Sweet Cora passed away. I had never met your family but oh how you changed my life! My own baby girl is close in age and as I’ve watched her grow over the past year I have thought of Cora, and prayed for you, often. I have held her tighter and enjoyed her more and thanked you in my heart for giving me perspective. Thank you for sharing your journey then, and now. May your healing continue and may you always know that Cora will NEVER be forgotten!ReplyCancel

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  • Melody - Praying for you guys tonight. ((hugs))ReplyCancel

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  • Carla - Oh Jess, I watched the blog so closely yesterday, willing an update as reassurance you were ok. Of course, how could you be ok but even though I don’t know you, it was awful thinking of how hard yesterday must have been for you. My little girl and I said a special goodnight to Cora last night after she was in my thoughts all day, as were you all. Your words reflect such strength and warmth and peace, so devoid of bitterness I can hardly comprehend it. Wishing you continued strength and the knowledge that there are so many of us out there carrying a tiny part of Cora in our hearts and loving her yesterday, today and every day xxx. PS, the cupcakes look wow, you are so gifted at making pretty things (and I’m including Cora and Levi in that :-))ReplyCancel

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  • tifRn - Oh, you Macs. you are just the best family. you give me such hope and inspiration when i am lost or feeling like i am floundering. thank you so much for allowing us at wesley to share your story and to take part in your journey. cora was-is-a beautiful girl and i enjoyed taking care of her. i remember being in with you when she was diagnosed and leaving to get you tissues, and just crying in our utility room before i brought them in. i thought of you today when i saw those pink cupcakes, and i am putting the pink heart on my mirror in the my car to remind me to keep my own heart open and my eyes on God’s road for me. God bless you all.ReplyCancel

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  • Mum2twopreciousgifts - Dear Jess

    You’ve made me cry. On a day of such significance for you and Joel, you’ve done something for others through your beautiful cupcakes. You are extraordinary.

    I feel Blessed to have ‘met’ your family through your blog. I feel Blessed to have prayed and continue to pray for you all during your journey. I feel Blessed to have cried happy tears for you when Levi arrived. I feel Blessed that you inspire me to be a better Mum when I’m running out of patience and I’m asking God why he chose to give us a child with disabilities. And you remind me to accept God’s plan, disabilities and all, and to smile, rejoice and be grateful for my Blessings.

    Thank you for sharing Cora. Her life has forever changed me – for the better.

    With a big hug from our little family in Australia.ReplyCancel

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  • Princess Martha - What a wonderful idea to send cupcakes to the hospital. The way they were packaged up was lovely. You did well. I hope today went as well as it could have for you. I am sure Levi loved all the extra cuddles. xxReplyCancel

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  • Sara - Samuel’s angel day is always hard for me. I think that you did a really nice thing by taking a “thank you” treat to the amazing doctors and nurses who cared for sweet Cora.
    Hold tight to Levi. His sweet face will help get you through the rough days.
    Take care!ReplyCancel

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  • The Noble Steeds - Your strength and faith is so inspiring. Thank you for choosing to handle your grief the way you have. You have been such a great example of a true disciple of Christ.ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - Although you don’t know me, I too spent most of my day yesterday praying for you guys. It’s hard not to remember the date since it’s my cousins birthday too. Because of this it will be easy to remember Cora’s Heavenly Birthday in the years to come. I also had an idea I wanted to share with you that some dear friends of ours came up with. They lost their son 35 minutes after birth. Now every March 6th they have a “family day” in celebration of Zeke’s life. Jessica said it’s a day she looks forward to now in a special way.

    Love and Prayers from Olathe, KS!ReplyCancel

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  • Mandi - You’ve been on my heart a lot during the weeks leading up to Cora’s heavenly anniversary. I’ve been praying for you and Joel and asking the Lord to continue giving you his unexplainable peace.

    We are about to lose our first child but in a different way. My husband and I are foster-to-adopt parents. Last Sunday (1/31) a newborn baby boy was placed in our arms and we were excited about the possibility of adopting another sweet baby boy. As the week went along we found out a relative has stepped forward and wants to parent our little guy. We’ve been told he will be leaving sometime in the next few days.

    Our hearts are broken and we don’t understand. Instead of being in the arms of Jesus I’ll know he’s in the arms of someone else that I don’t know…I won’t know if he’s being loved the way he deserves and this is hard. This is going to be another journey with a whole new test of my faith but I know God is good and faithful and will carry me through.ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - You and Joel continue to amaze me. Your love for others and the strength you’ve shown during this past year is tremendous. I think of Cora all the time and wish I could have met her although I feel like she is a part of my life because of your blog.
    Levi is a true blessing and God certainly had a plan!
    Sending many hugs and sweet thoughts your way from WI.ReplyCancel

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  • Jennifer Gilbert Settle - Happy Birthday pretty girl!! I am not sure that I know any words to comfort your hurting heart other than that I will continue to pray for your family…that that you would feel wrapped tightly in His loving arms!!ReplyCancel

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  • Toni :O) - I’m thankful to be part of your journey, I think of you all every.single.day…but oh how I wish I could have eaten one of those yummy looking cupcakes…wow, those are some really lucky people to get to enjoy those. Here’s hoping every day that passes eases your pain a bit and fortunately you have sweet Levi to lift your spirits and squeeze tightly. Big hugs to you all and may continued love and prayers surround you.ReplyCancel

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  • Brandi - I have been praying for you since found your blog. A year, wow! What a beautiful little angel you have!!! What a sweet gesture for you and Joel to do on Cora’s 1 year anniversary. The cupcakes look yummy!!!!!!! Praying for you!!ReplyCancel

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  • Tammie - I have been praying for you too; Thank you for sharing your journey of faith, pain, tears, and hope. In Christ, TammieReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - Because of you, your honesty and deep faith, I have grown closer to Him. The verses and scriptures you have shared here really caused me to reflect on my on beliefs– and witnessing you and your family walk through this difficult year has made me a different person– a better person. Maybe a little bit of Cora lives inside all of us who know her only through her Mom’s pictures and words posted on a blog. You love her and honor her so very well— and I am so happy Levi has joined your family too.ReplyCancel

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  • Julie - Remebering Cora…ALWAYS!ReplyCancel

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  • hoosier68 - Thank you for sharing with us. Your unwavering faith and courage are amazing. I think of and pray for you and yours each day.ReplyCancel

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  • Alli Unruh - You and Joel have been on my heart the past two days, and I’ve been praying for you.ReplyCancel

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  • Heidi - I am sorry you have had to go through this. Your little girl was/is so blessed to have/had you both as parents. May here little soul be blessed.ReplyCancel

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  • Susan - The angel day is such a hard day. Thank you for having the courage to write about it and to treat it the way you felt was right. We tend to ignore the angel day around here. I tell people I miss him just the same as the day before and the day after and I don’t feel like giving the day any weight. I felt pressure, the first year, to DO Something. I had seen other angel parents do balloons and other special activies while we just wnted to ignore it. Then I realized the day was about us and just like all the other grieving, we had to do what felt right to us.

    You made it through – good for you.ReplyCancel

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  • purejoy - happy heavenly anniversary, i know it seems off to say “happy,” but happy is the hope we have in Jesus. cora you are missed by so many, and we cry tears of sadness and of joy. so thankful that your little brother is there to fill their empty arm, and he’s so blessed to have a big sister looking over him in heaven.

    sweet blessings to you, dear mac family.ReplyCancel

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  • Ruthie - Praying for your whole family. Thank you for sharing your journey with us. You inspire me. You remind me of God’s goodness and presence even amidst trial and heartache.

    Ruthie – a blog reader from OhioReplyCancel

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  • A - I was thinking of you on her heavenly anniversary (hug). I am so glad you got some great family time, and those cupcakes look BEAUTIFUL! Maybe you should add a cupcake division of Cora’s πŸ™‚

    I pray that you will feel God close in the coming days!!ReplyCancel

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  • Melinda - I’ve never met your or Joel, but I can honestly say that you are in my thoughts and prayers every single day. As a mom I can’t imagine experiencing what you have, and my heart aches for you.

    What a wonderful way to celebrate little Cora. I’m sure Cora was quite tickled by the beautiful cupcakes that you made in her memory.

    Sending lots of love and prayers from Virginia.ReplyCancel

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  • MCH PHOTOGRAPHY - Awh, my thoughts are with you & your family!! What journey you’ve been thruReplyCancel

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  • The Drama Mama - It sounds like you guys had the perfect heavenly day! You guys are always in my thoughts and prayers! Sending lots of prayers, love & HUGS your way!ReplyCancel

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  • JESSICA - Your words always bring a tear to my eye, but your hopefulness and positive outlook bring joy to my heart. Levi is blessed to have you as parents.
    Those cupcakes look DE!LICIOUS!! The people who received them must have been grinning from ear to ear. πŸ™‚ReplyCancel

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  • meg duerksen - love love love.
    love you both.
    love cora.
    love levi.
    you are loved by me.
    and my family.

    the cupcakes with the hearts?! that is the best jess! seriously great idea. cupcakes DO bring joy…you are RIGHT!ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - What an awesome adorable way to spend your day. It only shows us all even more how amazing you are by spending such a difficult day thanking those that were there for Cora when she was sick. You are amazing. You are definitely loved and prayed for by MANY people. Now and forever. You are such an inspiration…Cora and Levi are two very lucky kids:)ReplyCancel

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  • dawn - It sounds like you spent your day as best you could.

    Our four month old son Aidan went to be with the Lord almost 11 years ago, and so we’ve done this day you describe ten times now. In some ways it get’s easier and in some ways it doesn’t. It sometimes sneaks up on me and my somber mood the week approaching surprises me until I look at the calendar. it’s like my body knows. weird.

    We don’t do much special on Aidan’s heavenly anniversary except hold each other tighter. But on his birthday each year we honor him with a family night. We go out to dinner and do something special with our other two kids. Aidan’s birthday is our own holiday–a day to remember a special boy, a day to remember the way God has sustained us, and a day to celebrate our family.

    But I agree with you–nothing seems quite right. so glad you have Levi to hug on this day.ReplyCancel

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  • Megan - I was thinking of you and praying for you yesterday – knowing that it would be especially hard.ReplyCancel

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  • Andy and Cari - 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18
    According to the Lord’s own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage each other with these words.

    Did you catch the word TOGETHER?

    Peace, love and comfort to you today.
    CariReplyCancel

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  • All Doll(ed) Up - Beautiful post, Jess. I am so thankful for the way you have let God carry you two and continue to let him be the source of your hope. It is so encouraging and challenging to SO many of us. We love you guys.ReplyCancel

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  • Miranda - We have thought of you almost daily for the past year and have held you in our hearts every second. It’s understanding that you wouldn’t know how to celebrate this day, but you have chosen to do it in a wonderful way.
    Thinking of you and sending you hugs!ReplyCancel

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  • Stephanie - I ahve read your story for about 9 months or so, and please know that I pray for your family every time. I am praying know that God will bless you, your husband and sweet baby boy beyond any imagination! You are so loved and happy anniversary to your precious daughter in Heaven!ReplyCancel

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  • C&Gs Mommy - I have prayed for you over the past year and thought of you all day yesterday. I think you are such an amazing woman and an amazing family. You are an inspiration to me as a mother and as a person. You have no idea how your strength and faith has made me a better mom to my 2 daughters (age 2 and age 2 months) Thank you for sharing so deeply with us.
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  • Al's World - You are all an inspiration, and a testimony to God’s faithfulness. You are loved, and prayed for. Again, I am so glad you had precious Levi to hold and snuggle on a day like this. God bless you all!ReplyCancel

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  • Emily - Your words encourage all of us to lean on Christ, for he is our rock and salvation. Your sweet Cora was such a beautiful child and I know she is in heaven swinging and playing with Jesus today. Thank you for sharing your story. You touch our lives beyond what you can imagine. And your little Levi is precious! With love from Arkansas!ReplyCancel

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  • Angela - You and your family are an inspiration! You make me think twice about life and how important family is. Happy Heaven Day sweet little Cora!ReplyCancel

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  • Robin in Benton - I was thinking of you and praying for you yesterday as you celebrated this anniversary of a day that was too painful to be imagined and at the same time joyous as we know that Cora is held safely in God’s hands and is watching over all of you from heaven until you get there to see her again. You continue to inspire and encourage others with your faith. God Bless You.ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - I can not get your family out of my thoughts and prayers. You may not feel like you are strong but you are incredibly strong. Our son was born very ill – for 6 months, doctors tested and tested for various cancers. While God continues to give us love and strength, I will never be the same again – and there was never any cancer! My son is now five and lives with a blood disorder – but he is VIBRANT & HEALTHY. I love how you place your focus on giving to others. You are reminding me to keep my focus on today and not in the past and to trust God’s plan. Take care of yourself, be kind to yourself, allow gentle grieving, and know you are an inspiration and a blessing to me. God bless you and your entire family.ReplyCancel

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  • Miss Em - Extra prayers to you last night and extra kisses for my daughter in honor of Cora. You are loved. The cupcakes are such a wonderful idea. I am so glad that so many people contacted you to remember Cora. It does help even if they don’t know what to say.ReplyCancel

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  • Ellen Grant - I have never commented before, but I started following your journey this day last year. I had a 2 year old daughter and I was pregnant with my second at the time. Your faith and walk through grief stuck a very deep chord in me. All I can say is, thank you for being so authentic and open and vulnerable. I have learned so much about grief, death and rebirth… how fragile life is and how our days are numbered and each is to be treasured. I miss Cora, too, and I have no connection with you at all, except through stumbling across your blog…All I have is a mother’s heart–that’s the only way I can relate at all. I am crying tears with you. (I hope it’s ok that I comment. I just wanted you to know that you are being thought of and prayed for in Nashville!)ReplyCancel

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  • Molly - I am still so very sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine what it must feel like to lose such a precious gift. But your faith amazes and astounds me and also gives me hope for this life and the next.

    I hope you know that your story has touched so many. I thought of Cora the other day when I saw a newborn with the same name. I wondered to myself, does this baby know how special her name is? Probably not. But I will definitely never forget your story. I will never forget Cora and think of her often.ReplyCancel

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  • leel - i thought of you both multiple times yesterday. a year, already? time flies and stands still at the same time once again for you, i imagine. thoughts and hugs to you.ReplyCancel

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  • SGreen - In some ways I can’t believe it has already been a year. I think about your family often and I wanted to thank you for being such a wonderful example of living in God’s faith and love.ReplyCancel

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  • Janine - I was thinking of your family all day yesterday. Your faith through all of this is inspiring. Cora’s life has touched so many people around the country and probably around the world. God Bless.ReplyCancel

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  • The Carroll's - Wow! I saw the title of this post and can’t believe it has been a year since Cora went to be with Jesus either. It was just a few days earlier that I learned of your blog and started following your story. I still have her sweet picture on my fridge that I received with one of the items I ordered from Etsy. It’s a reminder to me to pray for your family and to praise God for each day I have with my kiddo’s. My daughter is only a few months younger than Cora would be and we just had our son less than a month before your welcomed sweet Levi so I feel very connected to the season of life you are in. Thank you for continuing to share your heart and story with us. My faith has grown because of yours. Continuing to pray.
    Love, The Carroll’s in Alpharetta, GeorgiaReplyCancel

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  • Rachel - Praying for you all each day!ReplyCancel

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  • Marla Taviano - Love you guys. Cora’s sweet story has touched my heart in a way I can’t explain. Praying for you!!ReplyCancel

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  • Erica - i thought of you so much this week. saying a prayer of strength for you even today. i cannot believe it’s been a year, i remember sitting and crying (with you i’m sure) reading about cora. may God continue to pour his hope, peace, strength, & blessings over your family. you are loved by family, friends, & strangers.ReplyCancel

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  • Townsend Crew - …when I didn’t even think I could stand…

    Jess, your words are so powerful!
    As is your faith.
    What an incredible woman you are -somehow standing today. God is so proud of his creation!

    Sending prayers from ChicagoReplyCancel

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  • Melissa Joy - What words are there to express to you right now?
    I don’t know.
    But I am praying for you.
    Crying with you.
    Grieving with you.
    Praising with you.
    Clinging to the hope of Heaven with you.ReplyCancel

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  • shepherdsgrace - It is beautiful that the Lord led you to thank those who cared for Cora…in your sorrow…you gave thanks…that is a beautiful gift…

    thank you for sharing your hearts with us and His sufficiency in your brokenness…

    when I grieve over an anniversary I don’t normally articulate it, I just sit in it…because I know it will pass….but the pain is still there…but with time, it seems to be decreasing…

    I had a miscarriage 2 years ago this week, and there are 2 little boys at church that are the age our baby would have been…

    I look at them and smile, knowing my Father does all things well…and I rest in that knowledge…ReplyCancel

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  • The Perfect Trio - You are still very much so a part of my daily thoughts and prayers!!! For someone that I don’t even know you mean so much to me.

    Blessings,
    MelissaReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - The Francis de Sales quote was exactly what I needed to hear today. Thank you!ReplyCancel

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  • Beki - TheRustedChain - Thinking of you. Loving you. Praying for you.

    Every single day.

    You may not know it, but you’re incredible.
    God bless you Jess.ReplyCancel

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  • Abby Johns - I remember how I felt a year after my mother passed away from cancer. I felt like the pain would never subside, like I would feel that way for the rest of my life. I leaned so hard on God, I prayed for him to take the pain from my heart. The second year was a mixture of feelings from the first year and being able to go some stretches of time without feeling completely lost. I am happy to say that now, more than 4 years after her passing, I feel healed, I feel that I can look back on my time with her thankfully without completely breaking down.

    I pray for this healing for you and your family. I prayed for Cora when she was sick, I cried when she passed and I am thankful that you have continued to share your story because it is a reminder to live in the present with my little one.ReplyCancel

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  • Yankee Mama - You have such a sweet heart. Praying still.

    Blessings to your little family.

    SuziReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - You continue to be in my thoughts and prayers. You are an incredible family and I look forward to your posts coming to the blog almost daily. Just wanted you to know I admire you so much and you are just an incredible mother. Your family is so lucky to have you and I am sure Cora is so honored to have you, Joel , and Levi as well.
    Summer & Family in CaliforniaReplyCancel

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  • Anna - HUGS!!ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - I am so sorry for your loss. I am praying for you today and everyday. Today makes 4 years since I lost my daughter at 3 months old. You inspire me and helped me find my way back to the Lord. Thank you for sharing your story.ReplyCancel

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  • Nan - You two are a picture of God’s grace… Thank you for your godly response (and that includes the raw emotions, admissions of anger and anguish and wrestling with God.). You are such a great example of Christian joy…. That joy is not a plastered on smile when hellish circumstances are upon us but it is simply in laying it all down at His feet and entrusting yourselves to His providence and care. Peace be yours this day…ReplyCancel

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  • Brigid - Thinking of Cora and all of you today on her angel day. I continue to think and pray for you and your family everyday and read on as you travel this journey. I don’t know what it is about cupcakes, but we have done the same thing in memory of our little girl πŸ™‚ReplyCancel

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  • Lindsay - You continue to inspire me with your faith. To watch you give so selflessly in thanks to others on a day that is unbelievably difficult for you leaves me in tears. Praying for you now and everyday.ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - Sending love and hugs your way and we are also remembering your sweet girl. Even though we’ve never met your family was heavy on my heart yesterday.
    God bless the Macs πŸ™‚
    babykatesmomReplyCancel

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  • Christina Egner - What a sweet gesture & beautiful way to remember your sweet Cora today.

    Wouldn’t it be a great tribute to your little girl to add her new little brother to your blog banner?

    {just thinking out loud}

    Love & Blessings from Pooh’s Corner.ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - I’ve prayed for you so many times throughout this difficult year. I knew yesterday would be terribly hard for you and Joel. Your beautiful postings often glow with God’s love, grace and presence. Sweet Cora has touched so many lives…many who you’ll never meet here on earth.

    ElizabethReplyCancel

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  • Kristin Stegent - I can’t imagine how incredibly hard yesterday and the days leading up to it must have been. I ache for you guys. I cannot even stand the thought of the pain you must feel some days. You guys are precious! Cora is a beauty who will long be remembered, thought of and talked about. I wish so badly she was here with you, Joel and her baby brother though!ReplyCancel

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  • HannahM - Thinking and praying for you, yesterday & celebrating Cora’s sweet life.ReplyCancel

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  • The Schilling's from Cimarron - Hello…….. I didn’t blog on Monday for the fact that it was a very hard day for us too. Thinking back on the times together and the overwhelming emotions we shared together. We still think of you all the time and miss baby Cora, even though we didn’t get to share in the fun times of her life. Hope to meet Levi soon and just know we are still wishing you lots of love and happiness everyday! take care and we miss you lots!

    love you,

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  • Juliann - praying for you today, as you begin a new year. praying for peace, comfort and covering (Psalm 91).

    Juliann
    Gurnee, ILReplyCancel

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  • Kristen - What a beautiful passage at the beginning of your post, hopefully that kind of thinking has helped you a little bit during this time that I imagine must be about the hardest thing to go through. Your continued strength and thoughtfulness (the cupcakes!) are certainly inspiring.ReplyCancel

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  • Amanda - We miss Cora TONS – and we always will.

    Love you guys lots!

    I could use one of those happy cupcakes right about now.ReplyCancel

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  • Amy - Hoping you had a peaceful day yesterday. Those are hard days.ReplyCancel

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  • Tricia - Your honesty and faith continue to inspire and encourage me.
    My heart aches for your pain today.
    What a lovely way to celebrate Cora and her very special doctors and nurses! The cupcakes were, I’m sure bittersweet to those kind folks, but what a beautiful way to show your love and appreciation.

    I am saying all the wrong things today, I’m afraid.

    Please just know that you all continue to be in my heart, and that Cora has touched the lives of every member of my family. Every one.

    With love and prayers,
    XO*TriciaReplyCancel

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  • Christine - You were on mind so much yesterday and we prayed for you as we do so often. Your sweet Cora and your family have impacted so many lives and brought such inspiration and stronger faith to so many. My daughter turned a year old on the day that Cora met Jesus last year. So yesterday as she turned two, I also thought of dear Cora in Heaven looking down at her new baby brother and loving parents. We continue to pray for you and your family although we have never met. Sending you lots of hugs and blessings!!ReplyCancel

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  • Kelly - Sometimes I feel like I dont know what to say. What will be comforting to you? I just want you to know that I love your family, I love your strength and I love your faith in God. I dont think I ever knew you could really love someone without having ever met them before. You are so blessed and Cora is blessed to have you as her mommy.ReplyCancel

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  • Marianna - What a sweet thing to do on Cora’s first heaven anniversary. When you wrote you baked cupcakes and I scrolled down, I thought “WOW, you did make lots of cupcakes!”. I have no doubt they brought joy to many people’s lives today.
    A nice way to show the love of Christ. Praying for an extra measure of peace today.
    Your blog writings are a blessing to me.ReplyCancel

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  • mrstolli - I was thinking of you and praying for you just yesterday beacause I knew this day was coming soon. I’ve been praying for you for quite some time. I may never meet you and your dear family on this side of heaven, but I feel like I know you so well. I pray for you all the time and find myself shedding many tears for you. I can’t imagine what you’ve gone through, but I know that God has a plan even when we don’t understand. You are in my prayers!ReplyCancel

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  • Courtney - HAPPY HEAVENLY BIRTHDAY CORA! My heart aches for you today I know all to well the pain. Praying for you always.
    CourtneyReplyCancel

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  • Patti - I had just started following your blog via a prayer request through another blog when Cora was diagnosed. I remember checking in on the blog, praying for healing and I saw the post that said she had gone to be with Jesus. I was at work and got up from my cubicle and went and SOBBED in the bathroom. Her story changed the way I appreciated my own 4 month old at the time. Thank you for keeping up your blog, it is inspirational. Cora was an amazing child.ReplyCancel

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  • Kathy Hardison - May comfort be found in knowing that people are thinking of you today and I am praying that God will carry you through this day and the days ahead. I am sure Cora is in the arms of Jesus tonight being given a tight hug.ReplyCancel

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  • THE ZELLERS - Knowing Cora through your blog has changed my life as a mother. Thank you for sharing your family with us– little Levi is such a DOLL! We are thinking of and praying for you today.

    xo

    Amy Zeller
    Wimberley, TXReplyCancel

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  • 50 Chubby Toes - I’m at a loss for words ~ as tears are streaming down my face, my eyes are turned towards heaven, asking our Father to give you and your husband the comfort & love you need right now. Oh how I know He’ll answer. Blessings, EMichelleReplyCancel

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  • k and c's mom - Oh, sweet family, I know this road has been a rough one for you…You all stay close in my thoughts and prayers. And I thank you for the encouragement you have given me in my own journey through grief. You have no idea how much your words have helped me.
    Blessings to you every day, but especially today.ReplyCancel

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  • Alexa - beautiful Cora has been with Him for a whole year.. I’m sure she’s dancing with the king! β™₯ You are so brave! Thinking of you and sweet Cora today and every day!ReplyCancel

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  • Ginger - I thought of you all day… I pray that God continues to use little Cora’s life. I wish she could meet Levi… he is so blessed. I’m so sorry that you have this kind of anniversary… you will continue to be in our prayers.ReplyCancel

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  • nate - hi jess and joel. i love you guys so much. we prayed for you today at our staff meeting. i miss you and cora, too.

    lots of love from florida,
    nateReplyCancel

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  • nate - did i mention that i’m proud of you? cuz i am. you’re showing us how to hope in the resurrection of Jesus.

    He is risen. Thank God.

    nateReplyCancel

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  • Tristen@blissfulchaos - I have stumbled upon your blog about 5 months ago and have been amazed by your family. In spite of such a devastating experience, you seem to find the strength to help others at any chance you get. You are truly admirable. Your story has deeply touched me. I continue to read back to before this blog was a tribute to your daughter, but just a regular blog to pride about your daughter. As I read all your posts, I feel your pain and my heart hurts for you and your family. I also followed your journey with your second pregnancy and when the news came that you had little Levi, I feel like I know him! I’m so happy for you that you have God, an amazing family, and a new bundle of joy to help heal your sadness.ReplyCancel

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  • The Idaho Olsens - Thinking of your family on this day…please know that you are loved.ReplyCancel

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  • Christina - What a sweet thing you did. And as hard and awful and unimaginable as this year and day have been, I smiled when I read,”I ate three just in case.” I hope that’s all right that I said that. I think that when we can enjoy life in spite of the sorrow then God is manifested. You all show that quite well. Like many others I have this feeling of wishing I could make something better. But only He can, and will continue to do so. In His hope…ReplyCancel

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  • Jennifer - Big hugs to you on this extra difficult day. My sister died 27 yrs ago and my mom and I still always go out for lunch on her birthday and the day she died and talk about our memories of her. I was only 3 at the time so it’s nice to hear about her and know that while I might not have a sister to call up on the phone, I *do* have a sister, a real one, she just lives up in heaven. Little Levi’s got that too. A real sister in heaven, one that will always be a part of your family. Hang in there. (((hugs)))ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - praying for you!!!!

    Em
    from AustraliaReplyCancel

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  • Melissa.M.Loss - I remember reading that she was gone and though I do not know you all personal I was so shocked and sad I cried for you all so so much and Wish that no one ever had to feel this type of pain. I sit here today and cry knowing how hard it is to miss some one so so much and then have a beautiful little miracle to love at the same time. I was awaiting Levis arrival for so long then moved the day before he was born so I did not find out until last week that he was here and a boy! I am so happy for your blessing and so so sad for your loss. I hope that with each passing day you can keep coping the best you can. Thank you for sharing your life with us all it really is so helpful to see others faith and love in such a hard time. Levi is soooooooooooo Handsome and I know his big sister would have loved to hold him.ReplyCancel

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  • Lauren Kelly - What a sweet way to remember Cora by making and delivering cupcakes. And glad Levi was there to bring you a sweet distraction! Love ya’ll!ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - Your family is never far from my thoughts, and always in my prayers … especially on this heavenly anniversary.

    How blessed you are to share life with sweet Levi. He is an absolute doll. I’m sure he gives you many reasons to smile each day!

    “Yesterday is history.
    Tomorrow is a mystery.
    Today is a gift …
    That’s why it’s called the present.”

    ~MichelleReplyCancel

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  • gina - I have never met you. I am not sure I even commented her before – maybe once. But I have learned your story and prayed for your story through messages and love on other blogs. So today, know that you are loved and thought about from people you can never even imagine know your story. Know Cora’s. God Bless Baby Cora , forever.ReplyCancel

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  • run26.2mom - The cupcakes look yummy. Another amazing act of your true genuine spirit and heart, remembering others on such an emotional day. We remember you this time of year and continue to pray for you and your beautiful family.
    Peace.
    SusanReplyCancel

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  • Emma and Company - I thought and prayed for you all on Monday. I thought of Cora as well, thank God you will be able to see her again!ReplyCancel

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  • Lexie Loo & Dylan Too - You have been in my thoughts and prayers this week. This had to be an unbelievable difficult day for you. I think the cupcakes were a beautiful way to celebrate Cora’s life.ReplyCancel

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  • Valerie Koop - I pray (and cry) for your family often.

    We have never met, but the day you posted about Cora and the cancer … it rocked me to the core. I realize now it was because my husband has stage 4 cancer and when I learned of Cora it was yet to be diagnosed. The biblical verses you posted spoke to me; that this was a journey we were on, too.

    I read your blog daily because I find that God speaks so loudly through it. On days when I struggle with faith I read many of the passages you have written and it soothes me so much.

    May the Lord continue to comfort and hold you.

    ValReplyCancel

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  • Rich and Carolyn Dewey - We continue to pray for you. May the God of all Comfort wrap His arms around you and give you PEACE! Thanks for sharing your open, hurting hearts with all of us. You continue to give to us in ways known only to the Lord himself!

    Thinking of all four of you!

    Hugs!ReplyCancel

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  • Just the Two of US - You are a strong woman and I will continue to pray for you and your family!ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - God Bless you all!ReplyCancel

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  • laura - Jess for overa year I have read your Blog you truely inspire me. Your an awesome Mommy & Wife you always have creative ideas,Levi must be a great baby to allow you the time to make so many cupcake for the people that took care of Cora. Your family will always be in my thought & prayers.
    May God continue to bless your lives.ReplyCancel

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  • Audrey - Have been thinking about your family non-stop these past few days, knowing it was getting close. Life is full of little blessings, Cora was just one of so many!ReplyCancel

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  • Kristi REDISKE - What a great thing you have done to remember your Cora and the people who were able to help so much. I think this is such a great Christian witness also-you inspire me to do more for others. I would like to know where you get those cupcake holders and how you make your tags-so very cute! You are very talented, giving-its obvious what your spiritual gifts are. Still praying for you all.ReplyCancel

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  • Heather - Been thinking of you this whole week. You are so creative Jess! I love the bows on the cupcakes..WONDERFUL IDEA!! Praying God continues to comfort your hearts.

    Love HeatherReplyCancel

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  • Stephanie - What a beautiful way to remember a very beautiful child. I was a reader of your story just as it began to unfold last year. I have remembered you all in prayer and hurt with you throughout the year as well. May God continue to bless you with courage, strength, a lifetime of memories, and most of all, HOPE.ReplyCancel

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  • Jenifer's Journey - Happy Birthday Cora! Many of preys to your mommy and daddy to get threw this terrible daysReplyCancel

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  • Tall Pipi - I came across your blog for the first time on your baby’s heavenly anniversary. Thank you for sharing her story and your continuing journey. It is such a blessing to read and be reminded of what faith really looks like. In NZ we are way ahead of you in hours, but my prayers for you on this day stood the test of time. I’m glad your day just ‘was’. I look forward to reading more of your journey. Thank you for making the most of what the Lord has given you.ReplyCancel

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  • purplemoose - I don’t think there is a “right” thing to do on this type of day. I think you are amazing to think of others and to thank them. God bless you and your family.ReplyCancel

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  • Anonymous - He never promised the cross would not get heavy
    And the hill would not be hard to climb
    He never offered victory without fighting
    But He said help would always come in time
    Just remember when you’re standing in the valley
    Of decision and the adversary says give in
    Just hold on, our Lord will show up
    And He will take you through the fire again!ReplyCancel

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  • Amanda Nicole - Thank you so much for the cupcakes and hearts! The cupcakes were rumored to be the best we had ever had!!! Seriously you made those!?! I need the recipe! They were fantastic! And they came in handy on a very rough couple of days in the PICU. Thank you so much. Your beautiful Cora and family have not been forgotten up in PICU. We think and talk of you all often especially those of us who have kept up with your blog and have loved seeing you grow and bring lil Levi into the world. He’s a handsome lil guy!ReplyCancel

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  • GAMZu - What a long time to be missing your girlie. I’m sorry about your pain. πŸ™

    It was a very thoughtful and special way to spend the day the way you did.ReplyCancel

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  • Candi - I’m so sorry for your loss. I remember reading your story last year, and I just found your blog once again. Your family is in my prayers. On a positive note, congratulations on your handsome little guy!ReplyCancel

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