Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Sorry I haven’t posted in awhile. It’s hard to keep up with everything. Here’s the latest:

Jacob started chemo Monday night. All of his chemo will be taken orally. There is a pill and a liquid he has to drink. It will be Monday thru Friday every three weeks. The pill will just be during radiation and the liquid will continue for several months. He did do great the first two nights. Only by the grace of God!

Radiation started today. He is having proton therapy in Warrenville, IL near Chicago. Jacob and I will be here for 6 weeks. Not happy that we have to be away from Ken and Caleb for so long, so praying this all goes by fast!

We’re hoping to go home this weekend for Jacobs benefit dinner on Saturday. It’ll be a quick trip, but worth seeing and being able to thank everyone in person.

God continues to show us that He’s with us and in control. He is an amazing God!! We’re so very thankful! Also thankful for all of your prayers! We know they’re working. ?

Thursday, February 18th, 2016

Well, the last 24 hours have been eventful, to say the least.

Erin was scheduled to meet with the neurosurgeon last night at 6:00 (7:00 et) to discuss the results of the PET scan, but he was almost an hour late for the meeting. The fact that she was meeting with the neurosurgeon, and not the oncologist, made us all hopeful that perhaps the tumor was not cancer. I can only imagine the anxiety and fear she must have felt as she sat there waiting. It was after 9 here in Michigan when we learned that the tumor was cancerous, and they would be operating at noon today. Thankfully, it was confined to just the one area, and had not yet spread. Erin was understandably concerned about the surgeon’s ability to remove all of it, and of course, the fragile area they would be operating on. The operation would take 4-6 hours, and she was already feeling anxious about it.


Jacob was brought in for prep two hours early this morning, which was a surprise.  Erin was hesitant to leave him there, but knew his life was in God’s loving hands. She got a call from someone in the the operating room shortly after, letting her know that Jacob did well during the prep, and they were about to begin operating.  About an hour later, they called again and said that they were just starting to remove the tumor, and Jacob was still doing well. She was very grateful for the updates, as they gave her an idea as to what point they were at in the long process. That’s a long time for a mom to wait alone.


Shortly after 5, Jacob was out of surgery and it was reported to Erin that the operation went well, and they were confident that they got the entire tumor. They’ll find out more tomorrow through another MRI.


Again, thank you so much for you prayers and support. The Stielers may not get a chance to thank each of you individually at this point, but please know that they appreciate everything–the kind words and encouragement, the donations, the meals that are being made for Ken and Caleb while they’re home, and everything else…you guys are awesome!!!


Some of you have asked for an address to send something to Jacob. He could be switching rooms throughout the week, so this will at least get your card or package to the right floor, and it will be delivered to whatever room he’s in at that time.  They won’t be heading home from the hospital until next Thursday or Friday ( Feb. 25th/26th) at the earliest, so please take that into account if you mail something out after the beginning of next week.


Jacob Stieler, West 7

Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

9000 W. Wisconsin Avenue

Wauwatosa, WI 53226


Also, as I mentioned in my last post (scroll down), Amy Kimsel is collecting gas and food cards for the Stielers, as well as coordinating meals to deliver to Ken and Caleb while Erin and Jacob are in Milwaukee (and perhaps even after they return home). You can contact her on Facebook, or send me a message on here and I could put get you in touch with her. You can also donate to the Stielers through Paypal by clicking on the “GIVE” icon on the top right of the screen.


Thank you so much and God Bless!!!

Wednesday, February 17th, 2016

For those of you who do not get updates through the Hope for Jacob Facebook page, Jacob is currently in the hospital in Milwaukee awaiting PET scan  results after a brain tumor was found via MRI on Monday. Jacob had been experiencing headaches for several weeks, and even after several trips to the doctor, it was concluded that it was probably just a sinus infection. Erin knew it had to be something more serious, so she scheduled an MRI at the hospital in Marquette on Monday. The MRI showed a tumor (4 cm.) on his skull, and fluid pushing on his brain stem (which had been causing the headaches). Erin and Jacob’s transfer to Milwaukee was immediately arranged, and they arrived by Med Flight that night.


Jacob with Med Flight Guys

(Jacob’s new friends. They were so wonderful,

keeping him entertained throughout the flight!)

After the initial shock of his MRI results, Jacob regained his sense of humor and had such a positive attitude despite all that had happened. He finally went into surgery, just before noon on Tuesday, to have the fluid drained and relieve the pressure. He was a little anxious before heading into the operating room, but just two hours later, he was in recovery and feeling great–he could already feel the difference with that pressure gone!!!

This morning (Wednesday), Jacob went in for a PET scan, and as of 6:00 pm (ET), they have not yet learned the results. Erin was told that she would meet with the neurosurgeon at 6:00 (cheese time) to discuss the results, so she’s hoping it’s a good sign that she’s meeting with the neurosurgeon instead of the oncologist.

The Stielers appreciate all of the thoughts, prayers, and kind words they’ve received during this difficult time.

The staff of Gilbert and Sawyer Elementary in Gwinn have worked out a dinner rotation for Ken and Caleb once they return from Milwaukee next week. They have also started collecting gas/food/gift cards to help relieve some of the financial stress it will undoubtedly have on the family as they commute to and from Wisconsin. If you live in the area and would like to help out, you can contact Amy Kimsel via Facebook. If you don’t have a Facebook account, you can contact me (Rachel) on here, and I will put you in touch with Amy. I will be handling this end for the time being, while the Stielers figure out their next steps.

If you don’t live in the Marquette area, but feel led to help the Stielers, you can also donate through this website by clicking the “GIVE” icon at the top of the page.

Thank you and God bless!!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Good morning!!  Today is a wonderful day and so much to celebrate!  Today is Jacob’s 14th birthday!!!  Can you believe it? He has come so far in the last four and a half years.  We are so blessed to have another day, another year with him.  What a blessing he is to us!

This past month has flown by so fast.  School started on the 8th.  Jacob is a freshman this year!  Crazy!!  I have a high schooler and a middle schooler now.  I feel so old!  Ha!  School is going good.  The first day was pretty emotional.  The boys got on the bus at 6:30 and didn’t get home until 5:00.  That is much too long for any child.  Thankfully the second day went much better.  Still a long bus ride, but I think they’ve accepted it.  🙂  We have been blessed, however, to have a good friend of the family, a senior, drive the boys home everyday.  With Jacob in Cross Country and Caleb in Football, it’s just too much for them to get home so late and then have to turn around and go right back to the school for sports without a chance to eat.  So until the end of October comes when the sports slow down, they get a ride.  🙂

Cross Country is going good for Jacob.  He really seems to be enjoying it.  He’s getting better all the time and his endurance is growing.  He has had several meets since I wrote last.  Some better than others.  Always weather dependent.  He does not like the hot weather and does not do as well when it’s warm.  He prefers the nice cool weather.   He lives in the right part of the country.  🙂 Tomorrow he has a meet in Munising, so I am excited to go see him run again.  I always look forward to the meets.  Last week they ran 6 miles for practice and he averaged 8 minute miles.  I think that is pretty darn good and he was so proud of himself and said he had FUN!!  I love that he’s doing something that is enjoyable and healthy!  🙂

Last weekend was the Youth Hunting weekend.  Jacob was blessed with another buck.  A 5 point!  God sure does bless him, that’s for sure!  That makes 5 for 5.  In the past 5 years, Jacob has gotten two 6 pts., a 7 pt, an 8 pt. and now a 5.  I think Ken was a little worried that he might get a 9 this year.  Ha!  Although after Jacob shot the 5, a 9 pt. walked past his stand.  🙂  Maybe next year!  Jacob and Caleb were also successful duck hunting for the Youth weekend as well.

Other than that, all is well!  I have two happy and healthy boys.  What else could a mother ask for??  October 27th will be Jacob’s next scans down in Green Bay.  Your continued prayers are always appreciated!!   God bless you all!


jacob5pt jacobandcalebducks

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Jacob had his first cross country meet today in Munising. His goal was to not come in last and he didn’t. Lol! I’m just so proud of him and how far he’s come. Even though we stood out in the cold and rain, I was so happy and proud! Praising God for my happy healthy boy!!!


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Tuesday, August 18, 2015

What a wonderful summer we’ve had so far!  Hopefully all of you feel the same.  It’s sad that it’s coming to a close so fast.  The boys have been enjoying their summer vacation so much.  It’s been packed with fun!

We went to my sisters downstate.  They got to see their Aunts, Uncles, cousins and grandparents.   They had a couple of firsts:  Going to Sky Zone and going horseback riding.  They loved the horses and begged to get their own.  Not gonna happen!  😉  I got to go myself and enjoyed every second of it.  I understand why people can get so obsessed with horses.

We’ve also had company often and have enjoyed it all.  We were able to borrow a friends pontoon and go out into Lake Superior along Pictured Rocks again this year.  That never gets boring.  If you have never done that, I suggest you go.  It’s amazing and breathtaking!!

We spent one weekend in Mackinaw City with family and friends.  The boys had a blast in the pool and we got to tour Fort Michilimackinac.  That is right up Caleb’s alley.  He loves history!  Their Aunt Kim also took them out parasailing.  That has probably been the highlight of their summer so far.  🙂

July 28th, Jacob had his 2 year post treatment blood work, xrays, MRI, echo and EKG.  Praise God all was perfect!  We continue to thank Him everyday for Jacobs healing!!!  Afterwards, we went to the Bay Beach Sanctuary and Bay Beach.  The boys enjoyed going on the rides while Ken and I sat and enjoyed the smiles on their faces.  🙂

We just got back from a week of camping in Brevort.  We go every year.  This year was the 12th year.  We had a blast tubing and just being with family and friends.  The boys always enjoy their cousin time.  🙂

Jacob joined cross country this year and it makes me so happy. A little over 4 years ago, Jacob was in a wheelchair, living at Mary Free Bed for a month learning to walk again, graduating to a walker and eventually walking and running on his own. Even though yesterday was rough on him being his first day of practice, today I picked him up and he had a huge smile on his face and said, “Today was so much fun!” That makes my heart smile and fills me with great joy!! So thankful for Gods healing power and each day I have with my boys! 💜💙


I will do my best to keep you all updated on how his meets go.  He’s not planning on being a top runner, but wants to get back into shape and be able to better his time with each run.

Caleb had a busy day yesterday too.  He started football  along with getting braces yesterday morning.  There’s been a little complaining going on in this house with sore teeth and muscles.  😉

Friends of ours have invited the boys to go to Wisconsin Dells with them next weekend.  They are so excited!!!  I’m so happy that we are blessed to have such thoughtful friends.  🙂

Thank you for your continued interest in Jacob’s health and for all of your prayers!  We see evidence of it every day!!

April 29, 2015

Well, yesterday was a wonderful day!!  Jacob had his routine MRI, x-rays and blood work down in Green Bay and all was perfect!!  We didn’t have any doubt, but it’s still nice to hear and confirm what God has done in Jacob’s life.  

Jacob is doing really good, obviously.  🙂  Thankful that it’s spring.  He did some down hill skiing this winter and a little bit of cross country skiing.   He has been turkey hunting with his dad, but no luck yet.  They saw some jakes, but he wants to wait for a Tom.  🙂  He’s excited that school is winding down.  Mostly to have Spanish done with.  School has always come so easy for him, but not a foreign language.  I’ve never heard so much complaining from that boy over one thing ever until this.  😉  I think I’ll be more excited when it’s done than him.  Lol!  

We are still so thankful for all of your thoughts and prayers!  We are coming up on 2 years post treatment at the end of June.  YAY!!!!

I have posted a picture from yesterday, right before he got his IV out.  You can see the excitement on his face!  😉





Friday, December 5, 2014

I apologize for not writing much anymore.  Just so busy!!  🙂

Life is great!  Jacob is healthy and his brother too!  That’s all that matters at this point. 

Jacob had scans back in July and then again in October all was good.  Jacob is in the 8th grade this year.  Scary to think that next year I’ll have a high schooler and a middle schooler.  Ugh!  I feel old.  Ha!  He turned 13 back in September.  He’s been doing good in school.  He’s taking Spanish again this year.  NOT his favorite subject, but I keep reminding him that he’s almost done.  He got a C last marking period, but is getting all A’s and a B in his other classes.  I’m good with that. 

Jacob had a very successful hunting season this fall.  I’ll post pictures below.  He got an 8 pt. for the youth hunting weekend.  Very awesome!  He was so excited.  I had the privilege of sitting with him again this year, so that made it even sweeter.  He also got into the goose and duck hunting this year with his dad too.  He did very good and we’re so proud of him. 

We also got another dog in October.  We rescued a chocolate lab who was a year and a half.  She fits right into the family and Jacob is in heaven because he loves animals sooo much!!  🙂

We’re all just living life and enjoying it.  Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and have a blessed Christmas!!

By the way, does anyone even stop by here to check for updates?  🙂  If you are still interested in receiving updates, just drop a note or comment so I know it’s worth the effort.  🙂 

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Sunday, June 22nd

Well, hello strangers!  It’s been awhile, hasn’t it?  Sorry about that, but no news is good news, right?  Life is good!  Jacob and Caleb are healthy and happy and so are Ken and I.  What more could a person want? 

Just wanted to let you all know that things are good.  Jacob had scans again the end of April and everything was perfect!  We were blessed with a trip to FL from my Mother-in-law at the beginning of May.  Ken’s sister and brother-in-law went too.  We had a wonderful time!!  We surprised the boys, so that made it better.  We just pulled them out of school at lunch time and didn’t tell them where we were going.  They didn’t figure it out till we were at the airport and didn’t know it was Orlando until the layover in Atlanta.  Good memories were made.  (Pictures below)

The last week of May, Jacob was finally able to get a turkey.  He tried so hard this spring with out any luck, but finally got a jake.  He was so excited!  (Picture below)

On June 7th, we went down to Green Bay for Take ‘Em Outdoors Annual Battle On The Bay.  We only got one walleye, which Jacob caught, but had a blast and a fun time at their picnic.  The boys loved the face painting.  😉

The boys are excited to be out of school.  They did so well this year.  We’re so proud of them!  Caleb had 4 A’s and 2 B’s.  Jacob had 5 A’s and 1 C.  The C was in Spanish and he struggled with that class, but found out half way through the year that it was a high school course.  That would have been nice to know that ahead of time, but oh well.  At least he’ll have it out of the way.  Jacob’s still taking guitar lessons and still loving it.  I love listening to him play.  It makes my heart so happy!! 

Last night we went and celebrated…….it was the 1 year anniversary for Jacob finishing his treatment.  YAY!!!  We went out for a nice dinner and then for some frozen yogurt.  Afterwards, we went to the park and the boys ran around for about 2 hours.  They had so much fun and we enjoyed ourselves so much just watching them and having a conversation without interruptions.  Ha!  It was also nice to celebrate the first day of summer yesterday.  🙂  It was a LONG winter! 

Jacob will have scans again the end of July.  Still trusting and believing that he is in God’s hands and God knows what’s best for Jacob.  He loves him more than we do!!  Please pray for continued health!! 

Again, thank you for all of your continued prayers, love and support!  We are so very thankful!  Enjoy the pictures below and drop us a note if you can.  😉

God bless you all!!!

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Monday, February 10th

Well hello!  Did you think I forgot about updating you all again?  Well, I did….kinda!   Life has been so busy, but in a good way.  I’ve had good intentions on updating this, but it just doesn’t work out.  Not a whole lot to report, but that’s a good thing, right? 

Jacob is doing great!  He had scans back in October and everything was perfect.  Just what we like to hear.  🙂  He has been very busy.  He started taking guitar lessons back in October and LOVES it.  He’s learning to play a lot of his favorite songs.  He also enjoys going to Youth Group on Wednesday nights.  Jacob and Caleb also started downhill skiing last month and are enjoying it as well.  Caleb could take it or leave it, but Jacob really loves it.  He usually spends a good 2 hours on the hill.  🙂

His 3 month scans were back on January 14th.  All is good too!  We’re just so happy and thankful and continue to praise our Heavenly Father for all of His blessings!  We’re so thankful for each moment we have with our boys.  🙂 

I’m working another part-time job now too on top of being the Deputy Treasurer for Skandia Township, which I still enjoy.  I am working as a Thermographer.  It’s quite fascinating.  It can be used for all sorts of reasons, but we concentrate more on breast health.  It is an awesome tool to be used in conjunction with ultrasounds and/or mammograms.  It can detect physiologic change about 8 years earlier than mammograms for most breast cancer.  It’s just fascinating!!  So, between the two, I work close to 10 hours a week.  🙂  Perfect!!!

Well, that’s about it.  This is probably the shortest entry I’ve had in a long time, but I’m just happy that we have nothing crazy to report.  Just loving life and enjoying each other.  🙂