"If I were to ask God why He lets poverty and injustice exist, why there are so many orphans and why He does nothing about it, I am SURE He would ask me the same ..."

author unknown

About Us

My name is Jessica and my dear sweet hubby is Kelly. We have three beautiful girls, big sis and little sis plus our newest little baby sis :) Welcome to our site where we will blog about our journey to grow our family through adoption in Africa.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

To do list

*Clean house and keep clean before home visit on Thursday.

*Type up co-op weekly homework assignments.

*Fill out six (6!) grant applications.

*Survive one more week of swimming.

*Make doctor appointments for Kelly and I.

*Go to said dr. appointments.

*Start training to run this 5K.  Thinking of doing the C25K....as soon as I can pull myself out of bed before 7am.

*Figure out how we should pay for Little Sis's 4 cavities and 1 crown and the laughing gas that is NOT covered by the dental insurance...and then make that appointment.

*Take care of 3 meals a day for my family :) and snuggle baby in between. (this may seem like a given, but during the summer I struggle to cook, combine this with a year of morning sickness and third trimester unwillingness to cook, I should probably cook....)



I am aware all of these are not adoption related...or in any kind of order.  Just thought I'd give you a glimpse.

Monday, June 27, 2011

A heavy heart, but hope...

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy;
John 10:10a


for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,  but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.
Exodus 20:5b-6

A daily battle rages for our souls.  What sins are you passing onto the next generation?  Call to the Lord to break the chains.  

Only One can do it.

The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me,
   because the LORD has anointed me
   to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
   to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners
,
to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor
   and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
  and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
   instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
   instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
   instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
   a planting of the LORD
   for the display of his splendor.

Isaiah 61:1-3


July 16th, 2011
 7:30am - 2pm
*Volunteers needed to hold signs on the street, to wash cars, or to run the bake sale.  Email me or Facebook if you'd like to help or for the address so that you can stop by and get your car washed.  

*One or two volunteers needed to go to Panera Bread to get the free left over pastries from the day on Friday night and to bag or wrap them individually for sale on Saturday morning.

*Two volunteers needed to bake some goodies for the bake sale, ideas: muffins, cookies, or brownies.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The money anxiety

So, I've been having some nerves over money for the adoption.

Just trying to be transparent here. (Disclaimer: there may be some selfishness coming out in this post!)

We've been in pregnant/new baby mode for awhile now, but now I'm trying to be in adoption mode. But the next, very soon big chunk of money we will need is stressing me out just a bit. I see other families that are adopting have super successful fundraisers and am truly happy and cheering them on. I'm so happy they are rescuing an orphan and adding to their family, but then, I am so disappointed knowing that we did the same thing and came out with less than half of their results.

Why?

Why do we put in the same effort and have poor participation?

I wonder what lesson God is teaching me in this?

To trust Him more....I am trying

To lean on Him and not myself....it's sometimes so hard

That money is an idol of mine....probably, ugh, seeing that in type almost makes me ill.

I hate money, I do. Sometimes I really just wish it did grow on trees so I could do all the good that I want to with it, but what would the end result be? Would I depend on money more than God? Maybe.

I hate money...

I need money....

I wish it was all or nothing....

Now, I guess I'm just rambling...



I'm praying and trying to give it all to God.....and we're having a car wash on the 16th... :-)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Ears are Pierced!


Both of them!!!!!

And yes, it was touch and go there for a bit.

Little Sis wanted to get her ears pierced for her big number seven.

If I had to guess before hand, I would have told you she was going to do as well, or better than Big Sis.

It. did. not. go. well.

We could have waited 30 minutes for another worker to get there and do both ears at the same time, but daddy was on lunch break, so we went with it.  After all....Big Sis did one ear at a time, no problem!

The first ear done....

and she cried....

big, crocodile tears.

And she refused to let the lady with the earring gun anywhere near her.

We begged and pleaded with her....

and she cried louder....

Finally, mommy sat down in the chair with said birthday girl on her lap and told her she was going to let the lady pierce her other ear, she had no choice in the matter.

And finally, as the store filled with more and more customers, as the lady with the earring gun was losing her patience, we succeeded in
forcing
getting the second ear pierced.



Don't judge me, you may think I'm a bad mom.

All that matters is that when the birthday girl was asked 5 minutes later if she was glad I had made her do it, she sheepishly grinned and said yes.


Birthday a success.





Ears pierced.


And the lady even gave me a hard time about it as I paid...she informed me that younger was better, if I wanted them to have earrings, just bring them in when they are babies.


I didn't even get into the fact that this was a privilege that my girls have by reaching a certain age.


No, next time, we will just do both ears at the same time...

Monday, June 20, 2011

New Hair Do and a T-shirt

So, it was time for a new hair do!  I had my hair trimmed about 3 weeks before Baby Sis was born so that I'd be ready for her early arrival.  Ha!  She decided to wait until the day before her due date to show up.  

I headed to a sweet lady's place from church and said, what do you think?

And this is what she came up with...I love it!


She did curl it up for me, by alas, I don't even own my own curling iron, gasp!  Little Sis wanted to know where my curls went..hey, I had to shower for church!



Also, I finally ordered my own fundraiser t-shirt, it's awesome.


A warning.....they run small.  Especially small if you order the ladies fitted style. (You have been warned...now order one!) ;-)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day

And I will be your Father, 
and you will be my sons and daughters, 
says the Lord Almighty.

2 Cor. 6:18


 I did call my oh so sweet step dad.  I love him dearly.  He is so good to us kids, to the grandkids, and the best to my mom. 

But, I didn't call my real dad, my earthly father.  No, he is not someone that I look up to, not someone that I respect, and not even someone that I have a relationship with.

The Bible says to honor your father and mother, so I will not spew his mess here. But's it's there, preventing me from having a father.

That's okay, I am comforted by the verse above, the Lord promises that he will be my Father, I am adopted into his family, and He accepts me as is daughter, the daughter of a King.



I do want to take a minute to say that the best dad I know happens to be my sweet hubby.  He is such a wonderful dad, loving my girls, I couldn't have asked for a better man to be the father of my children.



Happy Father's Day to all the daddy's out there.

And to those of you who do not have an earthly father you can lean on or call for advice, there is One who will love you above all else!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Cake

So, several weeks ago Little Sis started telling us her cake "plans".  To say that these were anything but extravagant would be an understatement.

First, she wanted a serpent cake, like the basilisk from Harry Potter, complete with the big stone statue that the snake comes out of.


Then, she said instead she wanted a 3 tiered cake with chocolate shaped frogs around the bottom.


Clearly, the child has been watching too much Cake Boss!


So, when I explained that there was no way on this earth that her mother was that talented (heck, I'm doin' good to get a box of cake mix and whip it together), she stared thinking a little simpler.

And, we seemed to be on the same page.


Before I knew what she had told Daddy what she was thinking, I pictured a chocolate iced cake with some like of colorful icing circles.

She told her Daddy that she wanted M&Ms and Gummy Bears....perfect!


My big girl LOVED her cake!



Seven!  She's SEVEN!


Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Title of the Email was....

Welcome to the Ethiopia Program!

Today, we are officially, officially, officially accepted back into the Ethiopia program.  Praising God and trying to get my "adoption" hat back on in the mist of swim team and Vacation Bible School.

Ready, Set, Go!!!!!

SCT Now 5K Run

Yes, you heard right....run......

uh!  I DON'T run people.  Seriously, I like to swim, I like to walk, I like to do the stair stepper, but I really don't like to run all that much.

But, our church is participating in a 5K to raise money and awareness for SCT Now and I thought of Big Sis.  She likes to run and well, I thought this would be a nice mother/daughter thing for us to do together.

Over 2 million children are enslaved around the world, many of the children in the orphanages around the world have this fate to [not] look forward to.  If you don't know anything about SCT Now, please check out their website, it's a great organization geared at taking the predators off the streets.  Because the truth is, as soon as you rescue one child, another is taken to replace them.

So, get read, set, GO!

Please consider sponsoring both of us!

To donate to my run, click here.

To donate to Big Sis, click here.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

She is Seven!

Seven years ago, I gave birth to this pretty, sassy, fun little girl.  





She is our Little Sis, or now know as Big Sis by the adoring baby ;)
Happy birthday sweet girl!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Summer Fun and a Family of Five

So, the kiddos have been on official summer break for 2 weeks now.  They have all had plenty of sun and water.  Even Baby Sis got her oh so cute baby bathing suit on (and rocked the swim diaper just in case) for her first jaunt into the backyard $15 Walmart swimming pool.  It was a nice splash and play difference from the grueling hour of swim practice the big girls have had 5 days a week for swim team.

Even Daddy had plenty of fun getting to be the first to introduce baby girl to the water.
The big girls got cold fast, but had a blast!


And just like bath time, little miss loved the water!

And finally, we had enough forethought to plan our first ever "family of five" picture.  (Well, and we had to have one to submit to the agency for our new application.)


So, introducing the Cote Family of five....
until there are six......

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Thanking God for my Family

Our application and new family of five picture has been submitted and we wait.  I've made doctor's appointments and homestudy appointment trusting God will allow us back into the Ethiopia program officially, and soon ;)


So, it's been a lot of drama around these parts, not drama directly related to us, but by one or two degrees.


Needless to say, I am so thankful for my sweet husband who is laid back and not only puts up with all of me, but he also bends over backwards to be a very giving husband. I think that's one of the pitfalls of marriages these days, we as a society are so concerned about me, me, me. A marriage can really only be successful if you are focused on giving to your spouse. You have to focus on their needs, giving them what they need.  Marriage is an act of sacrifice, it's not about you!

One of the best books that is my mantra for a healthy marriage is His Needs, Her Needs by Willard F. Haley. It is a wonderful book that was very eye opening for me, explaining that while we all have our top needs, most of the time men and women's top needs are literally the opposite of each other. And that we (as naturally selfish people) will try to give our spouse OUR OWN top needs. See the problem? If I need conversation as one of my top needs, that cannot be one thing that I give my hubby if it's way down at the bottom of his list. I need to find out what his top needs are and give those things to him. It's what we did when we dated, but it gets put on the back burner a lot when we settle in for the long haul and get complacent in our lives and marriages.






So, off my soapbox! Needless to say, this week I am cherishing my husband and everything that he does to sacrifice for me.

Second, I am hugging my kiddos extra and especially my sweet miracle baby. Truly, all babies are miracles from God. If you have carried a baby in you womb, given birth to them and then watched them grow up, be thankful. Not all mommies will get that chance. Yes, they can adopt, they get to be a mommy...but not without heartache. This week, a bloggy friend of mine had to deliver her 20 week baby girl and instantly give her over to God. She has already said goodbye to 4 babies through miscarriages. The tears flow freely for her and I have never even met her in person.

Times like this, I ask God why, what is the reason for this level of pain. And then I remember, it's sin. My sin, your sin. That is why there is pain and ugliness in this world. How I long for Christ to return on days like that. I actually feel guilty that I have Baby Sis, how easy it is for us. I would give the gift of my healthy pregnancies to her if I could.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Growing our own Wheat??

This week Little Sis wanted to know if we could make flour out of the wheat she picked.
After my confusion turned to realization of the "wheat" that she was talking about, I had to tell her I didn't think it would be worth the work, since it was indeed grass.  Yes, it's time for daddy to mow the front yard!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

My, how fast they grow!

One Week Old

Three Months Old

Stop growing Baby Sis!  You are too cute for words, but you are growing way too fast!


Monday, June 6, 2011

Coffee, get your coffee!!

So, we have BIG news!  We can officially re-enter into the Ethiopia program!   Yippie!!!!!

To say that I'm over the moon is an understatement :-)

In honor of finishing my application.... again..... we are featuring our Just Love Coffee sale!

From now until July 5th, if we sell $75 in coffee, we will get 8 bags free that we can go ahead and sell at full price for our fundraiser!  So, hop on over to our coffee store and get some yummy African Skies coffee or try the NEW Costa Rica coffee!

I'm honestly still a little in shock and not completely moving at full speed on paperwork.  The baby slows me down...just a tad ;-) but, I have already called my homestudy agency to see what we need to gather and I will be printing doctor forms for hubby since he already has a doctor appointment for Wednesday....don't you just love how God works that out?!  Plus, praise God, we are on break from homeschool everything, so I can focus on paperwork for a bit.

So, buy some coffee, pass the word, the Cote's are adopting...again....officially!!!!!





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