Join us on our adoption journey.

"Trust in the LORD with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5-6
We are no longer orphans because of what God did for us. With one simple act of obedience our sins were forgiven at the cross. So what are we doing with the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ? Our family has decided to take a step of faith and do what He's called us to do, to take care of widows and orphans. Our journey starts with adoption.

Saturday, May 3, 2014


Letter adapted and used with permission by Jenny Elliot.  Thanks so much Jenny!

Bringing our kids home.

After two long years we are finally bringing our kiddos home!!!

Thank you for being a part of this journey and for praying for us and our kids. God’s plan of adoption is a beautiful thing and we are finally seeing it come to fruition for our family.

We want to make you aware of some of the parenting guidelines we will be implementing for Samentha and Emmanuel in the first few months home. This was very new information to us as we entered into this world of adoption, and we are giving much prayer and thought to where our personal boundaries need to be regarding these issues. More than ever, we need your prayers, this could potentially be a very challenging time for our family. While you may not understand all or any of what we are doing and why we are doing this we ask that you accept it and respect our decisions. It may seem like we are pushing you away but that is not the case, we love you all and will most definitely need you and your support during this transition time, but please be aware that we may need some space during the initial bonding phase.  That doesn't mean I don't want you to call!

The term that we are referring to is “cocooning.” The recommended timeframe for a family to “cocoon” is MONTHS - with a specific focus being on the first several critical months. Much of this research comes from Karyn Purvis who is a leading expert in all things relating to children who come from hard places.

Here’s the idea....these kiddos have gone through a lot of loss and will be dealing with emotions that we probably didn't even know existed for such small children. Since being in the orphanage they haven't formed an attachment to one caregiver, but instead, many people/caregivers. We need to make deliberate time and space for the kids to attach to Joe and I as parents. Yes, they will also find their place in our family, with Cadie, Jordis, and Coen, but even they can’t become the primary caregivers during this time.

Here are some specifics:

  • Affection - we have to be the ones to provide any and all of their care. Food, touch, consoling, rocking...all of these activities need to be done by us right now. You are more than welcome to give them high fives or a kiss on the head or cheek. But please don't pick up, cuddle, or sit either of our adopted children on your lap. I know this sounds awful but it's very important for the well being of our children.
  • Their world needs to be small. Just us, in our home, with the occasional outing. When we feel they are able, we will start introducing extended family and friends in small and quiet settings. Please don't be offended if you come by our home and we don't invite you in. It's certainly not because we don't want to but we have to be mindful of our family.
  • We need to limit visitors. THIS PAINS ME. You will get a chance to meet them and know them in the future, but for now we need to establish an attachment with Samentha and Emmaneul so that they come to know that we are their parents, their primary caregivers and that all they need will come from us.
  • Overstimulation - sometimes with kids from hard places it’s hard to tell what is “too much”. The kids can go from giggling to uncontrolled fit-throwing in an instant. None of it makes “sense” - yet all of it does, when you consider from where they came. Please don’t take it personally if we have to miss an important activity, or excuse ourselves from a situation in the months and years to come.

Again, we are so grateful for the love and support you have given our family. We are praying ultimately that the light of God’s glory will shine brightly in these kids lives as the Lord restores them. Thank you for your understanding and patience!

All our love,

The Kopers

Thursday, April 24, 2014

10 mores sleeps......

Now I really feel like the countdown has begun.  The days are going by so quickly 10 days will fly by.


AND Aaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhahhhhhhh............

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Today I Freaked Out!

Yep, today I freaked out........(Imagine crazy woman running around house pulling out hair trying to do things that really don't matter in the whole grand scheme of things!)

I really had no reason to, nothing happened, nothing changed, and this all still seems so unreal but I started thinking about things and sometimes that's just not a good idea.  I looked into haircare for hair that I have no idea how to take care of (overwhelmed.....), I repacked the kids suitcase, for the third time, and then racked my brain trying to think of all the things I need to get done around the house before the kids come home.  I don't know why it's so important for me to do this, it's not like life is going to stop once our family is united.  Life will continue to move along at a rapid pace and there will be many more things that I just HAVE TO GET DONE.......I don't know why I do this to myself.

I can't really explain how I feel, in fact I don't really know how I feel.  There is so much to think about, so much I don't know, and so much I just wish I didn't know.  I want this to be simple but life just isn't simple is it?  I'm looking for paradise on earth (aren't we all?!?!?) and I know that's unrealistic but it's that ache for rightness with God that I can't seem to find here and I long for everything to be restored.  One day everything will be perfect, everything will be just how it was designed to be but for now I'll trust in the Creator the One who knows infinitely more than I do and I'll rest in that, I'll quiet my soul and lay everything down at the foot of the cross.  So much easier said than done but that's my goal and I hope that you will join me as you go through the chaos and messiness of life and lay your everything down with me.  Jesus has this and when things seem just a little crazy we can know that He has it all worked out.  I know that all sounds so trite but it's true, it's so simple but we tend to complicate things.  All we need to do is keep our focus on Jesus, I'm finding more and more that no matter what I'm going through, when I focus on Him everything else fades to background.  It's not easy but it's a choice and one I have committed to taking over and over again in this life.

We leave for Haiti in 11 more sleeps, we will return with two precious children and this real life, messy  adoption will forever be a beautiful picture of what God has done for us.  He has rescued us from the sin that so easily entangles and from separation from Him, He has given us a place to call home, and He welcomes us as sons and daughters.

Please pray for us as we prepare to transition from a family of five to a family of seven.  It may not be easy but it will be beautiful.

Saturday, April 12, 2014




Oh Happy Day!

On Wednesday, April 9, 2014 we received our I-600 approvals for the kiddos.  Two days later, on Friday, we received our visa appointment!  Today I just booked our tickets!!!!!  Let the countdown begin...........

22 MORE SLEEPS!!!!!!


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Praise the LORD!

God granted us a successful trip to USCIS on Monday!  It was a little uncertain at first, the lady said we couldn't be there a week and a half early but she let us wait anyway and we only had to wait for one hour!

Our God is so good.  Now we're just waiting to hear from USCIS in Haiti for our I-600 approval then the visas get issued and then we get to go...........

Thank you all so much for praying!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Update and Pray Request

So after having our paper work in USCIS in Haiti for 8 weeks we come to find out that there are some documents that they are needing to be resent to them.  So.....of course we get that all taken care of only to come to the end of that process to find that our fingerprints have expired!  Ugghhh......I totally lost my focus that week and started to spiral out of control, if anyone so much as looked like they were going to ask about the adoption I started to well up and I feared a torrential down pour so I avoided people's eye contact at all costs.

We took care of business and within the week (Friday to be exact) had the fingerprinting appointment letters in my hands.  I sure hope the neighbours didn't see me whooping and hollering at the end of the drive way.  I just couldn't contain my excitement!

I know that there are many of you praying for us and for me in particular and for that I am so thankful.  I experienced that peace that has brought me through this last two years once again this last week and I know it's in part because you all are praying.  It's also because I got my focus back in perspective and took my eyes off myself and put them back where they should be, on HIM.  It's amazing how things just seem so much better when I focus on Jesus and what He has done for me.  Again I was reminded that this isn't all about me and my family or even our kids that we are still to be united with, it's about HIM and His work on the cross for our sin.  I am so thankful for the peace which surpasses all comprehension which guards my heart and mind in Christ Jesus.

So many times during this adoption God has shown me how much I cling to the things of this world.  It's really quite tragic.  I know there are many times I have clung to our Haitian children and have put them in the place of God, this is when things get out of hand and I go crazy!  We must remember to keep God in His rightful place, He is the only One that can fill any void we have, whether that be children, spouse, house, belongings, fill in the blank.  None of that can fill a void that only God belongs in.  That longing, that ache, that feeling like something is not quite right, it's there in all of us because we are not in right relationship with our Creator.  We live in a broken world and we MUST keep our focus on Him.  When He returns that ache will be gone and we will be in perfect communion with our LORD but until that day comes we must keep God in His rightful place in our lives and focus on Him.  I'm looking forward to that day but until then I will continue to run the race the God has set out for me and I'll look to Him as my guiding light in this broken and crazy world.

And now for my prayer request:  our family coordinator has informed me that many of the Haiti adopting families across the country have received their fingerprint appointments and then been successful at doing a walk in on an earlier day at their USCIS office.  I haven't found anyone who has done so at the Milwaukee office but we are going to take the risk.  Joe has taken the day off tomorrow and we will attempt to get our fingerprints done a week and a half early!  It's worth the risk, worst case scenario we return home without our fingerprints done and go back on April 9.  So please pray with me that they would allow us to come in early and have our biometrics taken.  It only takes 10mins to have the prints done.  Thanks for praying!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Don't be fooled.

As I sit here and think about the last two years (yes it's been two years, in fact we hit the two year mark on February 25, 2014) and the fact that we are still waiting for our babies to arrive I have so many thoughts swirling around in my head and I don't even know where to begin.  So I'll just start with an update.

Our paperwork is currently in USCIS in Haiti awaiting I-600 approval, that means our paperwork is now in US hands.  Once we have the I-600 approval we will then need to wait for the visas to be issued, once that is done we get the go ahead to go pick up our kiddos and finally bring them home.  Our paperwork has been in USCIS for seven weeks this Friday March 7.  That sounds like a long time and it is but they have a backlog of dossiers which is a good thing because that means there are a lot of kids real close to being united with their forever families.  Patience...

I was doing okay up until about two weeks ago.  The news of one family getting their I-600 approval sent me into spontaneous praises to God.  That could only have come from God as I was leaning into Jesus but as I've said many times, lately, during this process the flesh is a tough contender and when I heard that the family whose paperwork was submitted to USCIS on the same day as ours got their approval at the five week mark I gave in to my selfish and sinful ways.

It didn't happen right away, it was gradual but I could feel it and I chose to allow it to sneak in and take root.   All the while my LORD was standing by at the ready to help me in my time of need but I chose instead to wallow in my bitterness about how long this was taking, how unfair it all is, and how could it possibly be taking this long, and of course why didn't we get our approval too?  Of course I was happy for the family, how could I not be but I was beginning to feel sorry for myself and how unfair it all is.

I chose not to trust in my LORD and Saviour the One who loves those kids more than I ever could, the One who knows infinitely more than I do and who has this whole thing already worked out.  I stopped listening to reason and instead listened to myself.  I ignored the God who holds all life in His hands, regardless of what we think or believe.  What a mistake that was, what a mistake that always is!

But as I had my wee tantrum and pity party God in His infinite mercy and grace chose to give me a glimpse of what He is doing.  This whole adoption is not about me, obviously, it's not even about the kiddos, it's about so much more than that, it's about Him, Him and His plan, His plan for the redemption of His creation.  He loves us all so much more than we could ever imagine and the "Good News" the Gospel message is one that we need to cling to every minute of every day.  It's not just a one time thing, it's something that we need on a daily basis.  We need to continually go back to the Gospel message.  There we find the authour and perfecter of our faith and that's where we find the "everything" we're so desperately looking for.  When we find ourselves in Christ every minute of the day life seems more manageable, not easier for when we say Yes to Jesus that doesn't mean life on easy street, in fact it often times means just the opposite.

I'm not saying it's not okay to cry or be sad or mad or whatever emotion you're feeling, because our emotions are certainly real and God gave them to us but we mustn't base our decisions on them and react to them in a way that is inappropriate, which is what I was doing.  I should have stopped at the crying part, leaned back into Jesus and carried on trusting that His timing is perfect but I didn't and I didn't believe at that time that His timing is perfect, I knew it but I chose not to believe it.  But because God isn't like us, He chose to love me anyway, even in my nasty tantrum, and He decided to give me a tangible reminder of how GREAT He is and still I don't even have a clue of how truly great He is.

God's encouragement in a letter...
On Monday, March 3, I received a hand written letter from a dear friend from the Milwaukee area (you know who you are!) in the mail.  As I sat at the table with my kiddos I read the letter that was to be the turning point for my bad attitude.  Tears welled up in my eyes and I couldn't speak.  She is following our journey and wanted to let me know that she is thinking of us.  I felt ashamed for my bad behaviour and thankful for such an amazing God that in my sin He still reaches down and shows us that He has this, He's got it all covered, and the He's not done yet.  He used that letter and my friend to bless me in a way that was just so needed.  Wow........

So please don't be fooled.  As far as patience goes, I don't have any, ANY, I by nature am not patient so please don't read my blog and see this patient woman, enduring these two long years patiently, I haven't.  I've cried, I've shouted at my kids in frustration, I've held grudges against my husband for no other reason other than that he walked into the house in a good mood when I wasn't, yes that really happened :(, I've felt sorry for myself, I've doubted myself as a mother, every emotion you have had, I've had it too.  AND I've tried to control parts of this adoption which is just so ridiculous to even think about!  We're all the same, we're all sinners in need of the one true God.  I'm so thankful that God in His grace chose to use this sinful family to show His grace to those around us.  I hope that's what you see when you read this blog.

Thanks for following along and for praying.  Please continue to pray these precious souls home and pray that I would have the patience that can only come from Jesus!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Please don't tell me your adoption horror stories.

I have a wee rant to go on.  If you talk to me about our adoption please, please, don't launch into the adoption horror story of your friend's, cousin's, sister in law's.  It's extremely insensitive, very discouraging, and just down right rude.

If I came up to you and said I was pregnant I'm pretty sure you wouldn't be so quick to tell me about the dear friend of yours who just lost a baby to miscarriage or still birth.  I'm sure you would congratulate me and share in my joy.  If you have a question about adoption please go ahead and ask, I am more than willing to help you understand why we are doing this and will do my best to answer your questions about adoption.  There are some questions specifically related to our adoption that I will not answer due to the sensitive nature of our children's background but don't be offended, I'm protecting my children, not trying to exclude you.  Ask but don't expect intimate details about certain topics, specifically my children's past.

And just in case you were wondering, I do know that there are horror stories out there and I am not blind to the fact that there will be issues or as some may say "baggage" related to an adopted child.  But there are issues with all children, adopted and biological.  It's just different issues that need to be handled differently.  And the LORD knows that even I have "baggage", heck we all do!

Thursday, January 16, 2014


Our kiddos have their passports!!!  We are finally in the home stretch.  Our paperwork was to be submitted to USCIS in Haiti on Tuesday January 14 so LORD willing that did indeed happen.  Once USCIS approves the files we will receive an e-mail from them informing us of the approval and then we will hopefully receive the date to go and pick our kids up!!!!!  I still don't have a definite time frame but LORD willing it's soon.

Please keep praying for the many children still waiting for a home.