We originally created this blog to keep family and friends updated about our little man Jacob, who was diagnosed in the summer of 2011 with a rare, life-limiting genetic disease called Niemann-Pick (type A/B). Jacob earned his angel wings on November 15, 2012, but remains our daily inspiration and constant reminder that we must live in the moment and fill each day with JOY, LAUGHTER and an abundance of LOVE.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Jake's Happy Place

After Jacob earned his angel wings, Josh and I decided that we really wanted to do something extra special in memory of our Jakey boy. It didn't take me long to figure out exactly what that extra special thing would be. About two weeks ago, my idea became a reality and I'm so proud to share with everyone...Jake's "happy place"!!

We had a stone bench, a beautiful redwood tree (Jake's favorite), and a metal plaque placed at the Mountain View Park near our house in memory of our little man. The bench is placed near the big play structure overlooking the grassy area and Brandon Borman Courage Field. It's also placed right along a path that connects our home to Jake's grandparent's (my parents) who live on the other side of the park. We get to drive by and see it from a distance every single day. Perfect, huh?

Jakey's plaque -- located between the tree and the bench for everyone walking by to see.
Jake's bench and redwood tree. We've been diligently watering it because we want to make sure it grows big and strong, so it can be around for years to come and be a hide-and-seek spot, as well as offer shade to those sitting nearby. 

This park holds so many wonderful memories for us; memories shared with Jake. We used to take Jake on walks in the stroller around the park all the time...seriously, I'm sure he and I have hundreds of miles looped around that park! Even on tough days when Jakey wasn't feeling too well, I knew I could take him for a walk in the fresh air for him to kick his legs and he would let out his signature raptor laugh, as we strolled along checking out the trees and watching kids play.

There were lots of firsts at this park too. We took Jake for his very first ride on the swing and he had his first trip down the "big boy" slide. Jake took a spin on his tricycle around the grassy field. He and I sat on the bench at the ball field on his very first Easter and watched everyone play our annual family softball game. It's also the very same park where we held his super-fun storybook themed 1st birthday party!!

Riding around on his new red trike.

The little man's 1st birthday party. Despite the grumpy face, he really had a great day...he was just wayyyy over having his picture taken.

It's important for me to share that the Brandon Borman Courage Field is actually dedicated in memory of another incredibly special boy who also touched the hearts of so many! Brandon played Pee-Wee baseball with my brothers for years before being diagnosed with brain cancer and his family members are very dear friends. In fact, Brandon's mom, Terri is a nurse at Children's Hospital and was so incredibly supportive in our journey with Jacob. I have always respected and admired Terri, but now I have a greater appreciation and understanding as to why people (like Brandon and Terri) are put into our lives for certain reasons. I used to pass by the ball field on our way to/from the park and I'd always tell Jakey about how amazing and inspiring he was, just like Brandon. I have often been comforted in knowing that Jake has so many wonderful angels with him up in Heaven and I know Brandon is one of them.

As you can tell, we have so many happy memories with Jake at this park and this really is a happy place that we can share with everyone!

Kelly Joy sitting on brother's bench. I love how she's staring at me like..."really, Momma, you're gonna let me sit on this bench all by myself?" Don't worry, I had a spotter close by for extra safety.

Miss you so much little man!! xoxoxo

A special thanks to some very kind-hearted people from the City of Martinez who made this happen...you know who you are : )