Kicking off a new year

Jan 03

Kicking off a new year

Happy 2019!

Today should have been chemo day for me; the girls went back to school, Brad worked his second day in the new year, and it is three weeks since the infusion of my last chemo treatment.  However, December was rough: with my sickness layered on top of chemo that I had in early December, I had zero “good” days in my previous chemo cycle.  It’s tough to go so long feeling so sick.  It’s hard from both a productivity and an identity standpoint.  Yesterday and today were the first days I would say were “good days”… I feel like myself, and even though it’s a far cry from normal, I accept it for what it is.  In hopes of getting a few more good days, I put in a request to my team that my treatment be delayed until Monday.  A four day delay means four gained good days for me: I am savoring them.  And by savoring I mean catching up on my piles, doing all the laundry in the house, making holiday returns, and other very basic tasks.  Simple pleasures bring great joy.  When I see Dr. Wonderful on Monday (and have treatment), I’ll have a longer conversation with him to decide whether I will proceed on a true three week schedule, or whether I will continue on a three-and-a-half week schedule going forward.  I would appreciate your prayers for the balance of the cancer-killing treatment and the quality of my Jen-ness.  These are not easy decisions or circumstances.

I had a wonderful holiday season.  I am seen, known, and incredibly well-loved by my people.  I am living a blessed life.

Brad stole the season and my heart (again) with his “something to read” gift.  (Our annual family tradition is 4 gifts: something you want, something you need, something special, and something to read.) He dreamed, designed, wrote, and sourced a wall-hanging for me.  Thank you — a BIG thank you — to the talented friends who leveraged their skill, talent and resources to help him bring his vision to life.  Detailed on the plaque below are eleven qualities about me that Brad named, defined and described; they were then engraved on a 30-inch round piece of wood and will hang on our wall.  I love you Brad; you are amazing.


  1. Patty Wheeler /


    What s great husband you have but he is blessed to have amazing you as his wife. I wish the best for you in 2019 and beyond.

  2. Marlayne Skeens /

    Be still my heart ~ Big Hugs to you, your families & 2019 🙂

  3. Whoa, Brad! Amazing husband….and wife ❤️

  4. Sara Riebesel /

    Praying for you and absolutely love the gift from Brad! ♡

  5. Amber Hahn /

    Love. Your love wheell is the same age as Sydney 😉

    That guy, what a catch. You two, what a blessing, if even for a short time.

    Love you!

  6. Karin Eppert /

    Amazing. Each of you, all of you, our God, your story, your heart, the way you all love. ❤️

  7. Kim Rourke /

    I do believe you and Brad are a reflection of each other! I do believe I learn about, and get to know Brad through this gift. Beautiful truth-filled words celebrating your marriage, your life together as a couple. A one-of-a-kind gift for you, his one-of-a-kind gal.

  8. suenitz /

    Greeting Jen. What a beautiful present Brad gave you! He captured what a blessing you are to all that have crossed your path. This is you! Continued prayers for you everyday.

  9. Donna /

    Sending prayers!

  10. Newbie friend /

    Very cool gift- way to go Brad! Feeling sick all the time doesn’t allow your beautiful qualities to shine like they were meant to. It can even make it hard to pray. I’m Praying for your discussion with Dr. to help you to continue to be yourself . Praying for a healthier 2019.
    P.S. we are traveling to Australia soon!

  11. Conni Carlson /

    Happy New Year to you and your family.

  12. 50

  13. Lindsay /

    Will be praying.
    Amazing gift from B!❤️

  14. Aunt Annie /

    WOW! Speechless! What an amazing, thoughtful, heartwarming gift and gesture by Brad! Where are you hanging it? Please post a pic.?

  15. Jane Powell /

    Oh Jen! I feel sorry for your girlfriends’ husbands – that man of yours sets the bar sooo high! (And I’m sorry the current therapy is knocking you so hard). XX

  16. Darlene /

    You and Brad make one of the most incredible couples I know. How perfect you are for one another. Sending you hugs and praying for better days ahead. Love you all.

  17. Bonnie B Jackson /

    This is such a beautiful and timeless gift Jen… Not to mention a love testimony for the girls!! Praying for a healthy, happy and Joy filled 2019 for all of you!!

  18. His gift brings tears to my eyes tonight. What a blessing the two of you are to one another and to all those in your circles!
    Praying for you (also with tears tonight), for wisdom and health.

  19. Cindy Mitchell /

    He did an amazing job on your sweet..Sending prayers your way.. oh and I like your idea of the gifts.. one thing you want, one that need one for fun and one to read.. Good thing to start and keep going.. Jen, take care of yourself and keep on running down that cancer and get better soon..Have a Happy New Year..

  20. Cindy Mitchell /

    Prayers for you Jen.. I love the wall plaque that Brad gave you.. that is awesome.. Feel better soon..