Posted below are the most recent updates on Jacob and his condition. If you wish to receive email alerts when new information has been posted, enter your email below.

Tuesday, May 24th

Well, not too much to report today.  I guess boring can be a good thing.  Jacob doesn’t sleep the best when he’s here.  While doing chemo, they have fluids pushing through him pretty fast 24/7, so he’s usually up every hour to two hours needing to go to the bathroom, so that means that I don’t get much sleep either.  So early bedtime tonight!

Jacob met with the physical therapist today.  She’s very impressed with his progress.  The occupational therapist took a look at him and doesn’t feel he needs any occupational therapy at all, so we’ll just focus on the walking and getting his legs stronger.  She’ll see him everyday this week while he’s here. 

He didn’t eat much today.  I think it’s mostly a mind thing for him.  As soon as we step into the hospital, he doesn’t feel good and doesn’t want to eat.  It’s hard to force it when it’s hospital food.  🙁   As much as I’m trying to keep him eating fairly healthy, he was begging me for a Wendy’s cheeseburger, so I caved.  At least it was something to eat, I guess!  Oh well!  He did enjoy it very much though.  He told me several times.  🙂 

Jacob started chemo at 5:00 and again at 6:00.   He’s still feeling pretty good, just lazy!  I’m sick of him watching t.v. all day and ignoring me, so I told him no t.v. tomorrow because I was too bored today.  I need someone to talk to.  🙂  I know that it’s mostly from the chemo, but darn it….I need to be entertained!  ha!

Tonight we had 3 therapy dogs come by for a visit.  Always Jacob’s favorite!  He’s such an animal lover.  First was Frankie, a daschund.  So cute!  He performed some tricks for us, but the funniest was his wave – like a human!  Too funny!  Next was Bailey, a beautiful golden retriever.  He was sooooo soft!  And lastly was Maddie, a yellow lab.  I think she was our favorite.  She got right up on the bed and layed down next to Jacob with her head on his shoulder just like she’d always known him.  It was too cute!  Jacob just layed next to her and snuggled her!  I should’ve taken a picture. 

Well, hopefully we’ll get to bed soon and hopefully a better sleep tonight!  Thank you for all your prayers.  I know they’re working, so keep them coming!  🙂  Please pray that he’ll continue to feel good for the rest of the week.  Last time it hit him hard where he was sick all weekend.  Hopefully things are different this time.  I know that this is the way that chemo works, but things are different for Jacob.  He has so many people praying for him and we’re trusting God to keep working in his life.  He has BIG plans for him, so I know that that makes Jacob special!  Praise God!!!

Monday, May 23rd

Wow!  I didn’t realize that it’s been so many days since I’ve written last.  Time sure did get away from me.  I was enjoying being at home more than you know.  Plus, I was just so darn busy!   I’m sure you all understand.  I’ll try to tell you the highlights of each day.

Let’s see……Thursday:   Jacob went to school for a couple hours in the afternoon, so Ken and I decided to do some mushroom hunting.  We only found 22, but that’s actually really good for us.  I found 19 of them – not that I’m counting.   Ha!  Then in the evening, we went out on a date to the Up North Lodge.  We certainly needed that alone time.  It was very nice!  I got the ribs and they were delicious as always.  Ken said I needed to fatten up.  🙂

Friday:  Jacob went to school for several hours and enjoyed spending his last day of school with his friends.  Caleb did as well.  They won’t be back again before school is out for good.   After school, they each had a friend spend the night.  The 4 of them had such a good time running around and having Nerf gun fights.   My cousin and his wife and son came over for a visit.  It was a great day!

Saturday:  WOW!  Where do I start?  We tried to take it easy Saturday afternoon to rest up for the big event.   Ken and Jacob went fishing for a little while to have some Father/Son bonding time.  They had a lot of fun!  We arrived at the benefit dinner around 4:30 and were shocked to see the parking lot almost full!  What an event it was!!!  So many amazing people!  Thank you to our friends, people we haven’t seen in years and to so many strangers.  I couldn’t believe how many people showed up that didn’t know who we were, but just wanted to come and show support.  That is exactly why we live in the U.P. !  Where else do you get that kind of love and support from a small community?  We are so blessed!  I was so overwhelmed!  I can’t even explain to you how I felt the whole evening.  It was like a dream!  Thank you, thank you, thank you!  We need to thank so many people.  All of you who showed up to support us, for all of you that volunteered to work at the dinner, for the West Branch and Forsyth Township Fire Depts. for making all of the delicious food, for all the wonderful people who made donations to raffle or auction, to Bordertown and Thrivent – thank you; to Britton, Sally and Connie for your hard work and dedication.  We can’t thank you enough.  And most of all to Cappi – You are such an AMAZING woman!  We are truly blessed to know you and have you in our lives!  You are so loving and compassionate and giving!  Most of all, you are so selfless!  We all have something to learn from you.  We are so thankful and we love you!!!

Sunday:  Well, I didn’t get much sleep Saturday night.  Too much stimulation!   That’s not a good thing when you have to drive a long way.  We left around 11:30.  Jacob was so upset!  We all were.  Hard to leave Ken again, but Jacob had a meltdown before we even put the car in reverse and a couple more before we got to Seney.  We had a long talk about God’s big plan for him and what an impact his faith and trust in God has on other people’s lives.  He did good the rest of the trip.  We got back to Hastings around 7:00.  That makes for a very long day!

Today we had to be in Grand Rapids by 10:30.  His blood counts were good.  We didn’t get into a room until about 3:30.  Sitting around for that many hours is enough to make you crazy.  They got Jacob fully hydrated and started his chemo at 8:00.  He receives 2 different chemo meds each day this week through Friday, each an hour long.  Tomorrow they’ll start at 5:00.  Three hours earlier each day.  He was in good spirits all day today.  I am so thankful for that.  Hopefully that’ll continue each day this week.  Hopefully we’ll be out of here sometime late Friday afternoon, early evening.

Please continue to pray for Jacob.  I know it works!  Pray for his healing along with the strength to come back in his legs.  He wants to walk well and run so bad! Please pray that he has minimal side effects from the chemo.  Especially the nausea which will hit him hard by the end of the week through the weekend.  He’ll also have a echocardiogram (sp?) sometime this week (just standard protocol).  Please pray that everything looks good there.   And please just keep our whole family in prayer.  We are doing well, but please pray that it stays that way.  It’s so hard when we’re all apart.  And please don’t forget to keep those other boys in your prayers:  Brendan, Collin, Bryan and Zeke.  I know God is going to keep making miracles happen!  I know I’m asking a lot, but I appreciate any and all prayer!  🙂

Thanks again for all your love, prayers and support!!!

Wednesday, May 18th

I am enjoying my time home so much, I don’t want to go!  Time is going by way too fast!!!  At least I know that we can come back in a few weeks.  We’ve been busy the last couple days.  Tuesday, I got up and got Caleb on the bus.  He is really enjoying being back at school and seeing all of his friends.  I decided that I’d keep Jacob home until after lunch so it wouldn’t be too much.  My plan was to bring him in around 1:00, but as it got closer, Jacob told me he was too tired and wanted to wait until around 2:30.  So, Ken and I enjoyed the great outdoors.  A little while later, Jacob called for me and said he was ready to go.  It was 1:45.  He somehow got a burst of energy, so we were off!  We got to school and everyone was so excited to see him!  I must tell you first that he wore a “disguise”, the glasses with the nose and mustache attached.  I forgot to mention that he also wore that to the clinic on Monday.   He certainly got a lot of funny looks.  Oh, that kid!  Anything for a laugh!  🙂  Anyways, he got to chat with his class for about 15 minutes and then moved it outside where the other 4th grade joined us.  Jacob had such a good time seeing all of his friends and I know they all enjoyed it too!  He even had a couple friends acting like body guards to keep the kids from hovering too much.  Funny to watch!  🙂  Caleb’s class ended up coming outside to play too.  They all had so much fun!  He was exhausted, but it was well worth it.  He ended up eating a great dinner.  Seemed like his old appetite was back.

Today was a busy day.  We got Caleb off to school on the bus and then we had to run into town to do some errands.  Jacob was planning on going to school in the afternoon, but by the time we got done he was exhausted.  So, we just came home.  We ended up doing some yard work until dinner and then played some baseball after dinner.  Ken and Caleb against me and Jacob.  Jacob ran a little bit, but got tired quick so he ended up being the batter and I was the runner.  We had a lot of laughs and wished it would never end.  The kids were bummed when it was time for bed.  Can’t wait till this is all over and we can be back to enjoying every night together again.

Tomorrow night Ken and I are planning on going out for a dinner date.  I am so excited to have that time alone.  We could certainly use it, that’s for sure!  It’ll have to be a quick date so we can get home and get the kids to bed for school in the morning, but will be well worth it.   We are looking forward to seeing so many of you at the benefit dinner on Saturday!  Thank you in advance!

Please continue to pray for Jacob.  Please pray for the cancer to be gone, for his vertebrae to heal and that the bone would be strong along with his back so his posture would be good.  Also that his legs would continue to get stronger every day.  Please also pray for his mental and spiritual strength.  That he would continue to have faith in God and trust Him.  I know that satan is hating every second that we’re trusting God and giving Him all the glory.  I’m sure he’ll try that much harder to make us stumble, but we know who’s in control – our Heavenly Father!  We are so thankful for your continued support and mostly your prayers.  I know they are working!!

I would also like to ask for a favor.  There are a few boys that I would like you to pray for if you could:

First, there is Brendan.  We met him at Mary Free Bed.  He is a teen from southern MI that has been diagnosed with an “incurable” brain tumor, but I know with God all things are possible.  He is such a sweet young man and has wonderful parents along with 3 other brothers.  Second, is Bryan.  We were introduced to him through email.  He is 10 years old and lives in Nebraska.  He was diagnosed with Ewings over a year ago and is in remission.  Praise the Lord!  His parents have been great to talk to and vent to through email.  Such a blessing to have met them!  Third, is Collin.  Collin is the 7 year old at DeVos that Jacob befriended.  He has been diagnosed with Leukemia.  He is such a sweet boy with such nice parents, who I’ve had the pleasure to talk to on several occasions.  He also has 2 siblings at home.  Last, but not least, is Zeke.  He is not quite 2 yet, and was diagnosed with a brain tumor.  He is from the Soo and has been down at U of M for about a month now.  I hear he is doing great, but has a long way to go.  He also has an older sister.    I know that God has big plans for these boys just like Jacob.  Please pray for them and their families that they will look to God for love, hope and comfort.

Thank you so much!!!

Monday, May 16th

I apologize for not writing for a couple days.  I’ve been enjoying my time home way too much!  🙂  I’m sure you all understand.  Quite a bit to tell, so I’ll start with Saturday…….

Saturday morning was so nice.  Ken’s first day off, so we all got to sleep in and enjoy a morning together.  It felt as if we had never left and that this was all a bad dream.  Wish that it was true!  🙁  Anyway, we just enjoyed a nice day together doing nothing.   Later in the afternoon, Jacob’s best friend Evan came over with his mom Stephanie and we had a wonderful visit.  Caleb ended up having his buddy Jesse over too.  Ken played outside with the boys – football and tag while us ladies chatted.  Jacob had a great time “running” around the yard and playing. 

Sunday, we got up and went to church.  It was so wonderful being back at Silver Creek Church.  It’s been too long for me.  I missed not being there.   Such wonderful people and loved seeing and chatting with our Pastor Kevin Taylor and his wife Veronica.   It’ll be hard only going once a month, but better than not at all.  After church, we went out for lunch to the A&M Cafe in Skandia.  Great lunch!  When we got home, two more of Jacob’s good friends came over – Nathan, his brother Tyler and mom Lori along with Dawson and his mom Nadeen.  The boys had a great time!  Us ladies did too!  🙂  They played football and some basketball.  I could tell he was getting frustrated not being able to keep up with all of them, but hopefully that’ll keep him motivated.  He told me, “It’s pretty bad that even Caleb is faster than me now!”  🙁  I’m surprised that poor boy could walk today, but great exercise for him.  I know he wouldn’t take back those two days for anything!

This morning I brought Caleb to school.  It was funny seeing him walk into class for the first time in two months.   All the kids were swarming around him and following him.   I could tell he was loving it!   Once I got home, we left for the clinic.  Jacob met the doctors that will be taking care of him here in Marquette when we’re home.  Very nice and impressed how well they interacted with Jacob.  They drew blood and we waited for about an hour to get the results back.  Jacob played on their laptop, Ken played Jacob’s DS and I played on my phone to pass the time.  🙂  Once he got his results back, they administered his chemo.  It is a quick one with just a push of the syringe.  Jacob’s blood counts weren’t great, but good enough to have chemo done, so good enough for me.  I’d hate to postpone this thing anymore than we have to.  We got some lunch and came home.  Jacob was pooped, so he rested while Ken and I went for a nice walk back on the property.  It sure makes you appreciate what you have a lot more!  So beautiful!  Jacob’s still quite tired tonight.   He said his throat feels scratchy, so I hope he’s not coming down with something.  He’s going to try to go to school tomorrow afternoon for a while, so I hope it’s gone in the morning.  Ken and Caleb are fishing as I write this.  Hopefully not for too much longer so I can get Caleb to bed.  But I know this is great bonding time for the two of them. 

Please continue to pray for Jacob and his healing!  Also please pray that his blood counts will continue to rise this week so they are nice and high for chemo next Monday.  Also, please pray that Jacob’s not coming down with something and that he’ll be able to enjoy the rest of the week.  Also, please continue to pray that his walking and running comes back to him 100%.  We are so thankful for all of your prayers!  I know they work!  God is working in Jacob’s life and I know He’s working in my life as well as Ken’s.   God has big plan’s!  I just know it!!!

In Him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of Him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of His will.   Ephesians 1:11

Friday, May 13th

Well, not much to report today.  That is a good thing.  A very good thing.  Caleb still isn’t feeling the best.  My patience was running low this morning with the bellyaching.  No pun intended.  Like I said last night, he isn’t a very good sick kid.  So, I ended up bringing him into town to the doctors to rule out anything serious.  Thankfully it wasn’t, which I suspected, but the crying was too much!  Just some type of virus in his guts, which I guess is going around, so we’ll have to be extra careful to do really good hand-washing because of Jacob.  I feel bad for the poor little guy because I know he’s in extreme pain, but WOW!  🙂  I’m telling ya, God is certainly testing me.  I hope I pass!  🙂

Jacob did pretty good today.  I could tell he got better and better as the day went on.  Stronger and eating a little bit more.   He seemed pretty happy and was cracking  jokes.  The Jacob we all know and love.  A couple of his good friends called him today after school.  That certainly boosted his spirits.   We watched America’s Funniest Home Videos tonight and that certainly got him laughing – his favorite show!  Anyone that has ever watched that show with Jacob before, knows that it’s funnier listening to Jacob crack up than the actual videos.   Good therapy for all of us!  🙂

Ken’s last day of work was today – he took next week off so we could have some good family bonding time.  Can’t wait!  We probably won’t do much or go anywhere, but that’ll be the best.  Just relaxing at my home. 

Please continue to pray for Jacob.   Please pray that his blood counts are good on Monday.  If they are, he will have chemo in Marquette.  It will be administered quickly, so we can enjoy the rest of the day and hopefully he won’t feel too bad afterwards with minimal side effects.   Also, please continue to pray for Caleb’s healing.  They want to see their friends so bad and I don’t feel right about that until he’s better.  I would hate for anyone else to get sick.


P.S.  Happy Birthday Aunt Kim!

Thursday, May 12th

Home sweet home!!!  That’s all I can say!  You can’t even imagine how good it feels to be home after almost 2 months of being gone.  It is such a good feeling, although strange.  It feels like we’ve been gone so much longer than that.  It’s going to be so hard to leave next week.  I don’t even want to think about it.   And sleeping in my own bed??  Ahhhh…….   After sleeping in a hospital (a nasty cot or a hard pull-out), my bed feels like heaven.  🙂 

The trip went ok.  I guess about as good as I expected.   Jacob didn’t do or say much.  He slept most of the way and got sick a couple times.  Caleb slept quite a bit too, but when he wasn’t…oh my!  That child is the worst sick kid EVER!!  Just whined the whole time.  God is really testing me right now!  It took us 8 hours to get home with our stops, but we got home nonetheless.  Jacob plopped on the couch right when we walked in the door and started crying.  He said he was just so happy to be home!  🙂 

Today was about the same.  I actually got Jacob to eat a bit, although he was sick again this morning.  While he was throwing up, I asked him if he was hating life right about now and he said “Nope!”  What an amazing child!  Caleb is still not feeling the best.  Hopefully he’s much better tomorrow.  My patience is certainly being tested.   I did finally talk Jacob into getting off the couch and sit out on the deck for a little while.  He got teary-eyed and said that “Our property is so beautiful!”.  We’re all enjoying things a little more than we used to and to not take anything for granted.

We’re very excited that Ken took the week off from work next week.  We’ll have some really good bonding time!  I think Caleb will go to school next week (if he’s feeling better) and Jacob will try a couple times, but only for a few hours at a time.  I’m sure he’ll get tired out easily, especially since he’s not getting around the best yet.  Seeing their friends is something they’re both looking forward to.

Please continue to pray for Jacob’s healing and Caleb’s.  What are the chances he would get sick now when we’re home?  He hasn’t been sick in months!  Hopefully no one else gets it.  Also, please continue that Jacob will have minimal or no side effects from the chemo and that his walking and running will be back to 100% in no time!   We know that God has big plans for Jacob, for the whole family!  I’m excited to find out what they are.  We’re giving him all the glory!!!  God is good!

Thanks to all of you who are working so hard on the benefit dinner for next Saturday.  And those of you who have made donations!  You are truly amazing people and we could never thank you enough!

Tuesday, May 10th

Well, I don’t know what to say a bout today……I guess it went pretty good.  Jacob didn’t have much going on today.  They just had him on fluids all day.  At about 1:00, they gave him a blood transfusion only because we’re going home and they wanted to make sure that we could stay there for the full week and a half instead of having to come back in a week due to low hemoglobin.  Then at 5:30, he had his last dose of chemo.  He felt okay all day, just tired.  He did throw up a couple more times last night, but both times were because they tried to get him to swallow pills and about as fast as they went down, they came back up.  So, tonight he did good until we left and got down to the parking garage and then he got sick and then once on the way home.  He pretty much went to sleep right after we got back to my sisters.  Hopefully he’ll feel good in the morning.

We had the opportunity to leave by 6:30 tonight, but we didn’t leave till 8:00 because Jacob didn’t want to leave until the therapy dogs came by.    He got to see 3 different ones tonight.   One cool thing was that one of the ladies that came by with a dog came in the room and said “Are you Jacob from the U.P.?”   He said yes.  She then proceeded to tell us that her granddaughter goes to school with Jacob.  Her name is Sage and she’s in 2nd grade.  How cool is that?  What a small world!  So, hello to Sage out there and your family.  We hope to meet you someday soon!  🙂 

On another note, we got home tonight and Caleb isn’t feeling well.  His guts are not feeling good and I guess he’s been in the bathroom several times today.  Hopefully he doesn’t have this bug that’s been going around.  Please pray that he feels better in the morning.  That could definately put a damper on going home tomorrow.  We may have to now wait until Thursday.  Hopefully no later than that.  

Please continue to pray for Jacob’s healing and now for Caleb’s.  You can’t imagine how bad we want to go home and sleep in our own beds.  Hopefully they’ll both feel better in the morning and we can be on our way.  Please pray that we will also have safe travels.  Thanks again for all your prayers!!  Hope to see a lot of you soon!  God bless you all! 

Monday, May 9th

Sorry for not writing for a few days.  Was a little busy and then last night I couldn’t get on-line for some reason.  Let’s see, where do I start……Friday morning, Jacob’s friend Trisha came for a visit for a few hours.  Her parents had some business to deal with over by Detroit, but they made a round about trip to come see us.  Jacob had a great time with Trisha as did I with her parents Judy and Dennis.   After that, I could tell Jacob was a little bit down in the dumps.  I think it made him realize just how much he was missing all of his friends back home.  In the afternoon, we decided to go into town and do some Mother’s Day shopping to help take our minds off of things.  My sister Rachel helped Jacob do his shopping for me.  That made him happy!  On the way home, I was talking to Ken on the phone and we were chatting as we pulled up to her house and there was a vehicle in her yard, but was in the shade of her barn so I couldn’t tell what color it was.  I was telling Ken that some stranger was there until I realized that it had an Alaska license plate on the front (our van).  We all screamed when we realized it was him.  What a surprise!!!  He is such a stinker!  I’m surprised that I remembered to put the van in park before I jumped out.  ha! 

We ended up having a wonderful weekend – just being together.  Saturday, my parents camed down and my sister Liz and her family came over along with my brother Neil and his family.   We ordered pizza and just had a great time.  Sunday was just the four of us.  We went out for brunch, went to a park where the boys could play, went and got Dairy Queen (yummy!), went to another park at a fish hatchery and  the weather was gorgeous!  That made it the best Mother’s Day EVER!!!  Ken had to leave at 3:00ish.  It was a short trip, but better than nothing.

Jacob and I had to be at the hospital at 10:30 this morning to get his blood counts checked.  They were pretty low on Thursday, so I was nervous, but hallelujah, praise the Lord!  His white blood cell count was high….over 33,000 high!!!  Do you know what that means???  WE GET TO GO HOME LATER THIS WEEK!!!!!  Yippee!!!  I have not been home since March 23rd and Jacob since March 22nd.  We are so excited!  Can you tell?  ha!  Anyway, we are here at the hospital, Jacob got his first round of chemo earlier of 3 different medicines and he’ll have 1 more tomorrow afternoon and then we are out of here.  Hopefully he’ll feel good enough to drive home on Wednesday, if not we’ll leave Thursday.

He did get sick right away when he started chemo.  Very strange since I don’t think the chemo even had a chance to make him sick.  He told me it was from the disgusting hospital beans.  🙂  I don’t think I can argue with him there.  He’s been doing good ever since and hopefully he’ll feel better tomorrow.

Thank you for all of your prayers!  As we all can see, they work wonders!  God is making miracles happen and I know He’s not done with them yet!  Please continue to pray for Jacob.  Please pray for his healing, pray for him to have minimal side effects from the chemo and that he’ll stay on track so we can be home for good sooner than later.  Also, please pray that his walking and running will come back 100%.  He wants to run so bad!  I know he’s getting better every day.   You are all such amazing people….thinking and praying for us so much!  We are so thankful for all of you!!!

We are hoping to make it to the benefit dinner for Jacob on May 21st.  Hopefully we can see a lot of you there!  🙂

Thursday, May 5th

Well, the clinic visit didn’t quite go as well as I would’ve liked. Jacob’s white blood cell count was quite low. The lowest it’s been so far, but it’s jumped up over the weekend before, so I have no reason to believe it won’t happen again. At least that’s what I’m praying. Thankfully things went well when they had to access Jacob’s port. I didn’t even see a tear in his eye.

I wasn’t surprised that his wbc count was low. I could tell between yesterday and today that he wasn’t quite himself. Definately tired and he looked pale. Hopefully he’ll start looking better over the next couple days.

Well tomorrow one of his good friends is going to stop by for a couple hours tomorrow. Her parents have to come down for business. Jacob is excited! He hasn’t Skyped with his class in a couple days from not feeling the best, so that’ll be good for him.

Please continue to pray for Jacob’s healing.  Also please pray that he’ll be able to walk well again soon.  It’s really bothering him that he can’t get around good and run with his brother and cousins.    And of course, please don’t forget to pray for his wbc count to go up for Monday.  You can’t imagine how bad we want to go home next week.

Wednesday, May 4th

Today was rather uneventful, but sometimes that’s a good thing.  We didn’t do a whole lot – school work, yard sales and just enjoyed the great outdoors on a beautiful day.  Jacob was in a pretty good mood all day, although he did have a little bit of a meltdown during math, but I’m getting used to that.  🙂 

We were supposed to head to Grand Rapids today for physical therapy, but Mary Free Bed called us when we were half way there and told us that they had been talking to the hospital and it would make more sense for Jacob to get his physical therapy there instead of Mary Free Bed since we’re there so much.  What a great idea!  So, with that, our appointments for today and tomorrow were cancelled.  We do, however, still have to head into Grand Rapids early tomorrow morning to get Jacob’s blood counts checked.  Please be praying that they are good so that they can go ahead and give Jacob chemo on Monday.  Not that I want to rush it, but I would love to go home next week and if they have to postpone the chemo, that just throws everything off.  And we are missing Ken something fierce.  🙂

I guess this post tonight is going to be short and sweet.  Not too much to report tonight.  Please just keep on praying!  I believe they are making miracles happen.  God is so awesome!!!  I just know he’s working in so many lives right now.  Not just ours!