Category Archives: Blog

Imagine a Week in the Hopital . . . Because of a Splinter

SplinterImagine yourself being a child again.  Do you remember what it was like?  Were you a curious child?  Were you an active child?  Were you a creative child?  It was a time when you were innocent and you believed that if you thought it, it could come true.  It was a time when you believed in Santa and the Tooth Fairy.  It was a time when you were happy and carefree, not a worry in the world.

That is what life should be like for every child, carefree and happy.  Yet, for a child with cancer or any other serious illness, life isn’t carefree and happy.  Your childhood is basically robbed from the disease.  You can’t go places, you can’t attend certain activities because of the worry that you will catch a germ and wind up in the hospital.  You are probably in the hospital once every week for labs, and in the hospital every three weeks for chemo.

One time Jonathan got a splinter, yes just a plain old splinter in his finger.  We were in the hospital for 7 days because it was right after his chemo and his body didn’t have the immune system to fight back.  Can you imagine being in the hospital for 7 days for a splinter?  I’m sure most of you cannot, but for a family whose child is fighting cancer, a hospital stay is like a second home.  For a child with cancer, tomorrow is hope and a dream that they will win their battle.

Jonathan’s  Journey is all about giving back to the families and children with cancer.  It’s about giving back as much of their childhood as possible.  It’s about easing the worries and putting smiles on their faces, even if it’s just for a little bit.  Your donations are used for toys, gift cards, I-pads, and any other items that the children, families, and hospitals need to brighten a child’s day.   We’re a small non-profit but with time, I hope to make one of my other dreams come true.

My other dream is to build a big playground on the roof of The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and then from there build them on other children’s hospitals.  A playground where the roof retracts and lets fresh air, wind, and sound enter.  A playground specialized for children with illnesses so that during their stays, they have a place where they can get away to do what any normal child would do.

Why an indoor/outdoor playground?  When Jonathan was diagnosed with his second cancer, Choriocarcinoma we were in the hospital for over 5 weeks. My friend was across the street and wanted me to step out for just a little bit.  It was the end of June and when I walked outside, I realized that the fresh air was almost suffocating.  It took a bit for me to get adjusted to breathing the air and I felt dizzy and light headed.  That’s when I knew, that there had to be something else for the children.  Not just a hospital room with re-circulated air and artificial light.  They needed actual fresh air and sunlight on their beautiful faces.

If you could make a difference to a child’s life by donating a small amount, maybe the amount for lunch or a dinner out, would you?  I realize that sometimes you have to ask.  So, I’m asking, will you donate?  I’m asking because my son Jonathan deserved much better.  I’m asking because I don’t have the opportunity to watch my son grow up.  I don’t have the opportunity to hold or kiss him any longer.  What I have is the ability to do things in memory of my son who was amazing….  October 8 will be 4 years since Jonathan passed.  Please, donate.

Please, go to  There you can donate two ways, a one time donation or you can subscribe to donate a small amount monthly so that you can budget your expenses.  You can also send a check made payable to:  Jonathan’s Journey and send to 8425 South Wildcat Street, Highlands Ranch, CO  80126.

We’re gearing up towards the Christmas Toy Drives for both the Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia and the one here in Colorado.  Please make a difference!

2012 Toy Drive

Toy_DriveI hope 2013 is bringing everyone lots of love, happiness, laughter, and health. I just wanted to  let everyone know how we did for the 2012 Jonathan’s Journey toy drive.

This year for Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia we were able to donate $2500.00 in toys and $360.00 in gift cards.
Also, the Child Life Specialists had a Wish List of items needed for the children who are In-patient at the hospital.
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To my friends and family back on the East Coast….

beach loveI had lots of ideas this year to make this toy drive a big success. However, in light of what is going on back East, I’ll put those thoughts aside until next year. I realize that this toy drive will probably not be the most successful, but that’s okay. We’ll still have the toy drive. Whatever we collect, we’ll still be able to do something special for the children because the hard truth is that for some of the children, it will be their last Christmas. This update is not asking for you to donate.
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Wow, summer goes so fast….

leavesA couple of weeks ago I was dropping Justin and Jena off to school and Justin noticed that the leaves on the trees were turning colors. I told him that I didn’t like fall and that it makes me sad when summer ends. He asked me why and I told him that it’s because it’s coming up to the anniversary of Jonathan going to heaven on October 8. Every year I go through this, a sadness when Labor Day hits and no matter how much
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Toy Drive and Gift Card Drive for 2011

toysI just wanted to let everyone know that Jonathan’s Toy Drive and Gift Card Drive for 2011 will be on as usual. Last year we donated an amazing amount for both hospitals. This year and every year, I’d love to have Jonathan’s Toy Drive get bigger and bigger.

Last year for Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia we donated over $5,000.00 dollars in toys and $1,400.00 in gift cards. For The Children’s Hospital here in Aurora, we donated a

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Thank you, thank you, thank you…

photo by Dominik GwarekI know it’s been awhile, but things are just starting to calm down after the holidays. To say that Jonathan’s Toy Drive 2011 was a huge success is an understatement. We outdid last year. We were able to donate to The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia $5,000 dollars worth of toys, $150 dollars worth of snacks, $120 dollars worth of coloring books to the Out-patient infusion area, and $1400 dollars in giftcards.

For The Children’s Hospital here in Aurora Colorado, we donated a wagon full of toys for Childlife to keep for birthday gifts we

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Jonathan’s Annual Toy Drive

heavenTwo things happened today which made me finally get off my butt and write this post. The first was that a co-worker from Hopewell e-mailed me about Jonathan’s Toy Drive. The second happened at home. I was cooking dinner and my daughter Jena comes into the kitchen. She says “Mom, do you have pockets?” I said no, why? She said because she wanted me to hear a song from my I-pod that she thought I would like. She typically listens to my I-pod. In fact, I don’t even know how to use the thing yet. Since I was cooking and moving around she wanted to put it

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1 year without my baby….

missI’ve been meaning to post this, but somehow I couldn’t get myself to. Friday, October 8th was the one year anniversary of Jonathan’s death. This may sound crazy, but it made me realize that he’s really gone. The first year was so hard, but I can’t imagine things getting any better. The realization that your baby is never going to be with you starts to sink in. Even if you try to think of other things, you just know. I’ve been really sad

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Happy New Year!

letterI just wanted to say “Happy New Year” to all! We are hoping that 2010 brings us much peace, health, and a very boring life:) It’s been a roller coaster ride for us for the last 2 years and 10 months. It would be so nice if we could just have a normal life.

My husband goes to the hospital on Tuesday to get his Port taken out. The last batch of tests shows that he does not need anymore

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My little boy is in heaven……

heaven 2Today, Thursday, October 8, 2009 at 2:50 pm, my Jonathan entered the gates into Heaven. He was such a heroic fighter to the end. I could never express the feeling of loss or hurt, but I know deep in my heart that he is no longer in pain. The last three days, he has been asleep, but I know he’s been able to hear me. I asked him to squeeze my hand if he knew that mommy and daddy loved him, and he did. I asked him last night that when the time comes, if he could give me

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