Saturday, January 30, 2010

For Now

For now I will repost this slideshow from the Journey For Jess.

Thursday, January 28, 2010


Hey everyone. For those of you that typed in, you may be surprised to be here. For financial reasons we have shut down the Journey For Jess website. Turns out that it is expensive to keep an online store running.

We are happy to tell you that the Journey For Jess raised over $9,000 that was then split between the Epilepsy Foundation and TS Alliance over the last two years. If anyone has continued interest in donating you can do so at their websites, and

I will be working on a way to get some of the better pictures into a gallery and will update when I get that done.

Thank you so much for checking in on us, and for all your support.

Jason, Amy and Noah

Monday, August 24, 2009

JFJ Pictures

Click here to see the best pictures from the Journey For Jess.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Calendar Preview

Here is a first look at the upcoming calendar. I will have it available for pre-order at sometime tomorrow night.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


Here are what I consider to be the best 25 pictures from the Journey For Jess. 13 horizontal and 12 vertical. I am thinking of doing a calendar of each (vertical and horizontal). I will let you know more once I have more information on the calendars. I am working on updating the store to make the new pictures and calendars available and should have that ready sometime next week.

Saturday, August 8, 2009


Hello everyone. Sorry it has been so long. It has been a busy week catching up with friends and family and trying to catch up on things that were left undone while we were gone.

I am still sorting through all the pictures trying to put the best few together for the calendar and as thank you's for the sponsors. I hope to have them ready some time this week and will then make them available to be ordered sometime in the next few weeks.

Here are a couple that I like that I don't think I have posted before.

Monday, August 3, 2009

We're Back - New Sponsors - Numbers

Thanks to our new sponsors:
J Peterson
Scraper family
Iverson family
Johnson family

Here are some numbers I put together:

7800 Miles
1882 Pictures
45 different states license plates we saw (we did see Alaska and Hawaii)
30 + Miles of hiking (more for Jason)
24 times we went swimming
22 Nights at 14 places
14 National Parks and Monuments
10 Nights in Cabins without TV
9 States visited
8 Days over 100 degrees
4 Hours to drive the 60 miles from Grand Teton to Yellowstone (Road Construction)
2 Mornings under 40 degrees

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Grand Teton & Yellowstone

We made it home yesterday, driving all the way from Yellowstone. Here are some of the better pictures from Grand Teton and Yellowstone. We will post more when we have adjusted to being back home.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Kylie's Story

We have internet connection but can't connect the camera.

Here is Kylie's story as told by her mom, Maria.

All my life, I wanted to be a mom. I imagined holding a sweet baby in my arms, dressing her up in cute clothes, rocking her to sleep. I imagined going on long walks, watching her at dance recitals, watching her play softball, maybe even play 3rd base, like her mom did. I imagined the shopping trips, getting our nails done together and sharing all of my favorite books with her. I imagined the conversations we would have, answering all of the "Why?" questions, the long talks at night and soothing her broken heart over a boy. Little did I know, it would be my heart that was broken.

Kylie Jo Gibbons arrived on September 20th, 2004, the perfect gift to celebrate her parent's 1 year wedding anniversary. Instantly, I fell in love and knew I would do anything for her. 4 short months later, as I snuggled in bed with my sweet girl, I watched as she had her first seizure. Two weeks later, our lives were forever changed as the words "Tuberous Sclerosis" entered our world. I knew then that our lives would never be the same again.

In the beginning, it looked like Kylie would have a mild case. She did not have any tumors in any of her organs, aside from 2 tiny spots in her brain. She had a few white patches of skin and a tiny white patch of hair. But her seizures were relentless. Thousands and thousands of seizures those first few years, many hospital stays and a trip to Detroit to see if she would be a good surgical candidate. We could not imagine putting our girl through such a horrendous brain surgery to stop her seizures, yet when we found out she wasn't even a candidate for surgery, we were devastated and knew we would never see an end to these seizures. She has been on 10 seizure medications, some which have wrecked havoc on her immune system. By age 2, she had 3 ear surgeries, 3 sinus surgeries, iron infusions, long term IV antibiotics, numerous PICC line insertions and finally a port-a-cath placed, and revised, numerous times. We finally had it permanently removed this past April, when it caused a huge infection in her little body.

We met the Beecher family right after Kylie got diagnosed. Amy was holding this sweet, beautiful little girl, whith shocking white hair, in her arms. I remember how Jess's head kept dropping, over and over again. It broke my heart. Over the next few years, everytime Kylie was in the hosptial, Jess would be right behind, or vice versa. We got to be very good friends with Amy and Jason, as well as their extended family. It was obvious how much they loved their sweet girl and how much they loved ours. The girls loved giving each other "moochies" and even just pulling each others hair. Our hearts were broken when Jess lost her battle to the seizure monster but were filled with love when we heard about "Journey for Jess". What an amaving testimony of a parents love for their child.

Kylie is almost 5 and is still the sunshine in our lives. Although most of her organs still remain free of tumors, we did find out she has 26 tubors in her brain and a giant cell astrocytoma, which is a tumor in the ventricle of her brain. She has MRIs every 6 months to monitor it's growth. If it grows, she would most likely have surgery to remove it. How ironic to have a brain surgery that wouldn't even help to stop her seizures. She still has seizures, although is down to a handful a week, thanks to a medication that is not yet approved by the FDA. It has been life changing for us. The hardest part of this disease in the beginning was the seizures. 5 years later, I would have to say the hardest part now is the delays. Whether it be from all of the seizures she had, from where the tubors are in the brain or just from the disease itself, we will never know. Her speech has been improving every day and she is currently speaking in 4-6 word sentences but we are still waiting for those long conversations. She walked at 26 months and does get to dance and play t-ball, with her special ed friends. We are working at potty training, learning to pedal a bike and dressing herself. She does know her alphabet, is counting and drawing pictures. She receives 6 hours a week of combined PT, OT and Speech therapy. She still sleeps in our room at night, as many of the seizures she does have are at night. Every day is a battle but one Kylie fights with a smile on her face.

My dream is for no other parent to ever hear the words "There is NO cure". Please help make this dream become a reality and donate to "Journey for Jess". Thank you for fighting for our children!

Old Faithful Area

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Thursday, July 30, 2009

No connectivity at our cabin.

No connectivity at our cabin. Limited connectivity in parks. Will update more if possible

Wednesday, July 29, 2009



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This message was sent using the Picture and Video Messaging service from Verizon Wireless!

To learn how you can snap pictures and capture videos with your wireless phone visit

Note: To play video messages sent to email, QuickTime� 6.5 or higher is required.


This message was sent using the Picture and Video Messaging service from Verizon Wireless!

To learn how you can snap pictures and capture videos with your wireless phone visit

Note: To play video messages sent to email, QuickTime� 6.5 or higher is required.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Zion pictures - Utah Olympic Center

We left Zion this morning headed towards Grand Teton national park. To split up the drive we are staying in Park City, Utah, home of the Winter Olympics. Went to the Olympic park and watched some people practice ski jumping. I included one of the better jumpers in a sequence below.

Wupatki and Zion day 1 pictures.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Lydia's Story

Lydia Fiesel was born on October 26, 2002, as a “failure to thrive” baby. She didn’t gain weight at first, and we found out that she had grade 3 reflux and aspiration. Not a big deal. At 5 months old, I saw her first seizure. She was having myoclonic seizures. Her whole body would jerk in spasms anywhere from 30-90 seconds. They seemed to happen most when she would wake up from sleep. So of course, waking her up was the worst part of my day. She continued to lose weight during this time, and we tried Keppra, which didn’t seem to help with the seizures. At 8 months old, she got a feeding tube to help with weight gain. A week after her surgery, her seizures stopped. Her last seizure was on July 18, 2003. She is now taking Topamax for the seizures and is finally on the charts for weight. Her EEGs show that she has “spikes,” potential for seizures, but for now, the storm is calm. Lydia has since been diagnosed with cerebral palsy. She uses a wheelchair and a walker. She is non-verbal, but her smiles warm my heart. She is the light of my life!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Grand Canyon Pictures

We left the Grand Canyon area this morning and got to Zion this afternoon. One of the more enjoyable drives so far as we got to see Wupatki National Monument, Lake Powell and lots and lots of cliffs and canyons. We enjoyed the pool at the hotel when we got here this afternoon as it was once again 100+ degrees. I think the heat may be following us. Did I mention we got hailed on the other day while driving in northern Arizona? Weird. Also had a few moments of torrential rain. I thought this was the desert?

We hiked to the Weeping Rocks today where water literally comes out of rocks. The guide said the water fell as rain over 4,000 years ago. It was pretty cool.

Well, here are some pictures from the Grand Canyon. Will post today's pictures tomorrow.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Grand Canyon last night and

Grand Canyon last night and this morning. Historic Route 66 this afternoon. Will try and post more tonight.

Friday, July 24, 2009


I posted a couple of albums of pictures I have taken so far.