5, 4, 3, 2, 1..........

Tuesday, March 19.......just four days from now. The countdown is on. We head on over to Seattle Cancer Care Alliance to begin Anna's intake. She will undergo many scans and tests of her entire body to make sure she is as healthy as can be for chemo and transplant. Daniel will also have tests and a complete physical to make sure he is as healthy as can be to give his bone marrow. Craig and I, along with Daniel and Anna, will sit through classes instructing us on all that will be taking place. Anna will need to be in Seattle everyday now for the next four months. She MIGHT get the next two weekends "off" and get to be home, but we will find out more on that as the days arrive. Her prep will take place until the first week of April, in which she will begin the first form of chemotherapy. After about four days of the first chemo, she will begin the intense, high-dose chemo for another four days and on April 11 (Nathanael's 13th birthday) she will get a day of rest. At this point in time, it looks as if the actual transplant day will be April 12, and this marks day 1 of 100 in Seattle. This will also be the day that Daniel will go in for (day) surgery at Seattle Children's, they will then take the fresh bone marrow and inject it into Anna's Hickman line. It will take around three weeks for Anna's body to start making it's own bone marrow from Daniel's. The shortest time it could take is two weeks. Once this has been accomplished, Anna will be released from the hospital and into our care and that of S.C.C.A.. She will be seen at (Fred Hutch) every day at least once a day for the rest of the 100 days.

We are gearing up for a very intense season in our lives. Currently, the search is still on for a house to rent over in that area. The trouble with the housing facilities such as the Ronald McDonald House, etc., is that our family is too large for the space and fire codes. They do have an apartment available to us for after the transplant which is the longest part of our stay, they are working diligently to accommodate us. Some rent hurdles to get past are rental agreements and cost. Some places that looked like a possibility require a one year minimum. We do trust that the Lord will direct us and provide for us!

Many have asked us how Anna is doing. Physically, she is weary. She has much bone pain, nausea, and light-headedness. She tires very easily and has some difficulty enjoying simple pleasures. Emotionally, Anna is handling things well but getting a bit nervous. She has good moments and unsettled moments. We laugh, we cry, we laugh and cry. Spiritually, Anna is doing amazing! She is trusting in the sovereign hand of God. Anna knows where her eternity will be spent one day and desires to use this trial to share the joy of the Lord as well as the wonderful gospel with all she meets.

I am amazed as well as blessed as I watch my little girl endure such a traumatic trial with grace and peace. The joy that fills her overflows even in the toughest of moments. I say moments because that's how we live life right now, moment by moment. There is much unknown in our future, this is a road we have never travelled and it's scary. And yet, we hold tight to our Father's loving, guiding hand as we follow, trusting. I think about my little ones as they hold tight to our hands, following with complete trust that we will only allow what's best for them. And yet we fail them everyday. If they can trust so completely, parents who are imperfect, how much more can we trust our Perfect, Heavenly Father who NEVER fails us?! This is the peace that passes ALL understanding! When the fears arise, and the tears come forth, we have a faithful and loving Comforter who is ALWAYS there! We pray that we can share this truth with many in the days ahead! Many without hope, without peace, without joy and we have the answer!

 We know God has a purpose in this and that He will get our entire family through, closer to Him than ever! Thank you all for your constant love and prayers!


  1. Dear Houston Family,

    What strength and comfort from our loving Father that can only be known by those who are His! What a blessing to be in His loving hands, indeed.

    We continue to pray for health for Anna and Daniel, wisdom for Pastor Craig as he leads your family, a perfect place for your family to stay in Seattle, and abundant grace and peace for each one of you.

    Love you all,
    Mike, Cyndie, and Danny

  2. Hi Emily, Leanne here. I'm from SW Washington and I've been reading your blog for a few months now.

    I really must redouble my prayers for your family!! This is where the rubber meets the road, this is the proving ground for you all and I know you will be clinging to the Lord with all that is in you!! Please believe me when I say that your family will be added to our family's prayer list. You are not alone and please remember that!!

    I did notice that baby ticker on the side bar of your blog...does this mean what I think it means?? If so, I rejoice deeply along with you!!!

    It seems that, since we live in the same state, it would hopefully give you great comfort to know we are praying. If you ever wanted to really "meet" me, you can at:


    Take care!

    1. Nice to (meet) you! Thank you so much for your prayers! Yes indeed, the ticker means what you think! We are quite excited about baby #12!!!

  3. Prayers are being said every day for Anna & your whole family as well as the doctors that will be caring for Anna & Daniel~ (virtual hugs)

    Angie Baker (Rick Potvin's sister)

  4. We are praying! "Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." (Hebrews 4:14-16)

  5. Thank you, Houston Family, for your tremondous example! Anna, your absolute faith and trust in our faithful Heavenly Father is a challenge and an inspiration. Your smile and joyfulness day after day in the face of trial is a blessing. You all are constantly in my prayers! I love you guys!

    Sarah S.

  6. Praying for your family. We hope to make it out to visit when we can. We'll be in touch. Love, Team Fuller

  7. Brian and I know the Lord does guide and heal and astonish. Our faith has increased as we have experienced an answer to the obedient prayers of our friends and family. We know that much will and is being accomplished through the Houston family for His glory. We are praying for you knowing that the effectual and fervant prayers of righteous men availeth much. We love you.

  8. Praying for Anna and all your sweet family!

  9. I just noticed the little baby ticker in your sidebar... congratulations!

  10. Houston Family,
    You are forever in our hearts and prayers. We love each one of you. May the presence of the Lord overwhelm you during this season of life. But then again sounds like He already has. Congratulations on Baby #12. God's timing is amazing and perfect.
    Sam and Debbie

  11. Houston Family,

    In constant prayer for Anna and the entire Houston family for the wisdom God will provide during this difficult time in your lives. I will also pray that the Lord can use your family to be an encouragement to others while going through this time at the Hospital. I know that your family has already greatly encouraged many throughout the World.

    Love and prayers,
    Rick Potvin
    Pr. 3:5-6

  12. Congrats to you all on #12, and on Anna & Daniel's upcoming events. God is good....all the time, and we pray for you every day. He knows your needs, and the timing there of! Please post news as you can, so we all know wisely how to pray. Our hearts hurt right along w/you all, and know we would do more than pray if we could!
    Carole Binder & family

  13. Praying for Anna

  14. Hugs to you all and we will continue to pray for Anna, Daniel and the whole family. Thank you for the updates.
    The Lanphears

  15. God Knows All Things Eternally
    by Don Fortner

    God knows all things eternally,
    And fully He knows you and me;
    No thought can be withheld from Him
    Before whom all things are open.

    We dare not try to hide from Him
    Our inmost thought and secret sin;
    But we confess our sin to God
    And trust His Son's atoning blood.

    My soul, take comfort in this thought
    God knows His own, so dearly bought;
    He knows our needs, and pains, and fears,
    And (Bless His name!) for us He cares.

    Omniscient God, we bow before
    Your throne of grace and we adore
    Your knowledge and Your wise degrees,
    And joy that you do as you please!

    May the JOY of the Lord be your strength at this time.
    Praying for Anna and all your family.
    Sarah Houston Ibbotson
    Salzburg, Austria


  16. Love you so much. We were filled with strong emotion when we found out this is really happening. We are praying for you. I'd love to talk on the phone if Anna has the strength and time in the hospital. Lots of love to all my precious family. Btw, this is like my third attempt to post. :)


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