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Dear Eli

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Dear Eli - Page Text Content

S: Dear Eli...

FC: Dear Eli...

1: "There is nothing in the world like being loved by the Savior and waking up to one of His miracles everyday.... I have a beautiful baby boy, and a wonderful husband. God is sooooooo good!" -Jennifer

2: Dear Eli, Your Mommy was my very best friend. I have a journal that I am writing all my favorite memories of your Mommy in, and someday that will be my gift to you. I met Jennifer when I was 8 years old. Looking back now I don't even remember exactly how we met. I just know that we were the best of friends from that day forward. She was so fun and outgoing and I was quiet and reserved. We really made the perfect pair. Your mom was my comfort zone. If she was by my side I felt like I could do anything. We were inseparable and I liked it that way. Growing up I had 2 homes, mine and hers. We started singing together right away and in my opinion there was no better duet around. I loved singing with her so much. We fought all the time about who got to sing what part :-). I always wanted to practice 100 time before we sang and she wanted to fly by the seat of her pants. That never changed even when we grew up and she moved away. She would be coming home for a visit and at the last minute she would say, "Hey, you are gonna sing with me Sunday morning." Of course it would be a song that I had never heard. So we would be sitting up at the last minute on Saturday night, her teaching me a new song. The night before she went home to be with Jesus we got to sing one last time together. Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound.... I will never forget that moment as long as I live. I am so very thankful that I had the chance to sing with her one last time! She was more than my best friend. She was and always will be my sister. We always called each other sisters. Most people go their entire life and never have a friendship like your Mommy and I had. It was a special gift that I will treasure the rest of my life. For 22 years she was my best friend and no one will ever take her place. I think there will always be an ache in my heart for her. She made me promise her that I would always be a part of your life Eli, and that is a promise that I intend to keep. I look forward to watching you grow up and telling you more stories about your beautiful, wonderful Mother. She was one of a kind and she was my hero. I love you little guy! Love, Amanda Ferguson

3: "I love my life, I love my God, I love my family and friends...It is beautiful outside - What more could I ask for?" -Jennifer May 26, 2010 at 11:29am

4: Dear Eli, I was going to save this and tell you myself when you asked, but you will soon learn that there is nothing your Nonna, Daddy, Pappy or Uncle Gabe ask of me that I will not try to do. So here is my story of you and your momma. First I remember your mom from camp. She was the princess. She knew what she wanted and she wouldn't quit until she got her way. She always had fun, ALWAYS. I was the nurse so she connected with me right away. She knew who had air conditioning. Then when my children lost their dad she didn't need to be asked but insisted on being their caregiver when I was at work. She was our fun time. We did so many things and laughed so much she helped us forget how sad we were. (Thats what we are going to do for your family now) We have the letter your mom wrote the day she married your dad when she came by and we were not at home. She left us her leftover food as well. She and I thought alike. My kids told her to marry your daddy before she made up her mind to take the plunge. (Long story, I will tell you one day when you decide to get married). Anyway she wanted a baby and so she went to the doctor and found out she needed to take shots. Now one thing your mom hated was needles and shots. But she asked me and I couldn't say no. One night I got there at 10 and it took me until midnight to wait for her to be ready to take it after many tears. But she overcame that fear because she wanted YOU. She prayed for YOU. She found out on Halloween she was pregnant and we celebrated with cake. She loved cake. We giggled many times from Halloween until a little after Christmas. Then she feared something was wrong. She knew. We went through many chemos together and believe it or not she made them FUN. She loved fun. On the day you were born she was so frightened and she called me many times. I was moving as fast as I could but she needed her own nurse. (She had a way of making sure she had the right people in her life at the right time) She wanted me there to make sure you got the right and best care. She wanted me there to help her, your Dad, and your Nonna. It was a perfect day and she was a perfect mommy. She never complained or cried with pain and as she predicted.... you were perfect. She said I knew he would be "God told me". Your mom talked to God and he talked to her. Through the next two years she laughed many times with you. She endured procedures, surgeries and pain with one goal in sight "I want to raise my baby" So Eli there are many more stories but none so great as my intention to share with you over the rest of your life what a great mom you have. I will share her with you every chance I get. I will never forget her because she is part of me. I will cry with you when you are sad, laugh with you when you are happy, talk with you when you feel confused and be there for every event I can make. I was there from the beginning and I will love you forever. I will do my best to be the positive, fun loving person that your mom was for us. Her spirit will live in you and I will always see her in your face. I am assured that her father (Earthly and heavenly) will be with you and protect you and her momma will do all the things with you that she did with you mom. Your Daddy will always make the best decisions for you because he will always remember how much your mom loved you and him. Your Uncle Gabe will give you the security that he shared with your mom and will watch you grow and remember all the fun things he and your mom shared as kids and connect with you as he did her. My family is your family and I love you always, Mimi (Your mommy even picked that name for me because she wanted me to know I had to have a special connection to you) Love, Brenda Hodge

6: "Woke up to the most beautiful day, turned over and there was Eli and Andy still sleeping... It doesn't get any better than that!" -Jennifer May 3, 2010 at 9:45am

7: Dear Eli, When I write or read the word "bELIeve" I will forever think of you and your mother. Your name rests in that word and your mother is resting in it today. What I remember most about your momma is her smile...what a beautiful smile. You could see so much in her face, her love she had for people, and her love for Christ. Jenn had a twinkle in her eye too! That was because she had a great sense of wonderment. She looked for the good in people and she found it. I know Eli there will be a void in your life now that she is gone but you will forever be surrounded with love. People will always be there to let you know just how much she wanted to stay with you and how deeply she loved you. She is in heaven feeling healthy and strong and she's busy getting things ready for a wonderful family reunion that will take place one day. You had an exceptional Mother, God Bless You, Rhonda Collins | Dear Eli, I can't even find a place to begin. Your mommy was such a beautiful woman from the inside out. She was so caring for others and and just had something about her. We met when we were just kids and I always thought she was something special, before I even got the chance to really know her. So I will share with you what I remember when I think of your Mommy: Laughter, so much laughter. Jennifer was the kind of friend you bent over in pain laughing with. She could take a sad, bad, or just awful situation and make you laugh and get your mind off of thing.s Courage, never have I seen someone fight with such determination that she did, for you, for her life. Faithful, to her friends and family and her God! I am sure that you will be all of these things, and I hope you know how blessed you are to have a Mommy like her! Love Brittany Wenker

8: "I love my husband and my baby boy... | I am truly blessed" -Jennifer

9: Dear Eli, Your Mama was one of a kind. I can still see her smile, hear her laugh and I'll never forget the way she crinkled up her nose and put her hand on my arm when she said something funny. She was infectious...but in a very good way. She sang so beautifully, what a gift she had. She had such anointing when she sang and I always looked forward to hearing her. She had such range and power yet could sound so soft and endearing. She loved to sing for Jesus. She was my youth choir leader and oh how I wished I could sing like her. She was a true warrior in Christ and an inspiration to me. She had such conviction in her heart and when she spoke. I can still see her with arms lifted high praising and worshiping Jesus. She is truly one of God'sChildren. I remember going to your baby shower and you were in her belly. She was wearing a beautiful scarf around her head, grinning from ear to ear and her face glowing with excitement. She looked so beautiful pregnant. She could not wait to meet the little miracle that was inside of her, growing daily. That little miracle was you. Your mama and your Grandma brought you to meet me at work when you were only a few weeks old. What a handsome little man!!! I was so honored to meet you and hold you. Your Mama was SO PROUD OF YOU!!! As she should have been! You have down right dangerous looks. :) Even though your mama is up in heaven, she is smiling down and loving you from above. I hope you will always know that your mama loved you so very much and talked about you all time. If there is ever a time you want to know how special your mama is...I would be more than happy to tell you again. She was an angel here on earth. Love, Leah Megerle | Dear Eli, I want you to know that I knew your mommy before she was even born... and from the very beginning of her life she was a speical, funny kid, always loving and caring even as a small child. I remember how she would laugh at things I was not so sure were funny but when she'd laugh her whole face would glow and you had to laugh too. I did not see her much when she got older moving away and all... but I have her tape of songs that I still listen to and pictures of her growing up. When we went to church together, for a short period when she was first married to your dad I will always cherish the time she wanted to go to a bakery down in detroit so her I and your dad went and she made me feel like her best friend just for the short visit . that was your mom making you feel loved and wanting to share her joy with others. I will always remember her with love and affection. She had great teathers in your grandparents. And you have a great dad because when I was at your baby shower your dad was across the room from your mother and I looked at him and his whole face was lit up with a great light and I looked to see what he was looking at and it was your mom standing with a group of women laughing and talking and I said to my sister Billie and my mom who sat with me and said look at the love that Andy has on his face. Oh how great it would be if all husbands looked at their wives like he was looking at your mother that day. She was much loved, Eli. I could write other memories from long ago but I will just end in saying. The love and faith she had was priceless and the joy she shared was felt while in her presence. Love, Pamela Heidel

10: "I have the best son in the world... He has one proud Momma!!! " -Jennifer July 29, 2010 at 12:00pm

11: Dear Eli, I don't know where to begin. Your mother was an answer to my prayers in every way. For years I prayed that God would send me a true Christian friend (which are not easy to come by) and when I met your mom, I knew He had heard my prayer. I am honored still to call her friend. She was the most genuine and most self-less person I have ever met, hands down! I looked up to her, and she truly was my hero, and always will be my inspiration! Eli, she loved you so so so much! Never doubt for a moment how much joy you gave your Mama! She was so very proud of you, and cherished every moment she had with you. Even though it's not in the way we would like it, I know she is still with you, every day...because she wouldn't have it any other way. You were her most prized treasure - even before you were born, I remember she would be singing in church, and you would begin to kick her, and she would smile and cry just to feel you move inside! She was so in love with you even then. I remember coming to the house after she brought you home from the hospital, and your Mommy and Daddy were beaming with joy. Holding tiny little you, I just wanted to breathe you in! (Little did I know at that time I was pregnant with your buddy, Nate!) Eli, holding you that day I remember knowing in my heart there was something so special about you- you were just so fresh from heaven. It was an honor because not many people can say that they have actually physically held a real MIRACLE in their hands! And that's what you are sweet boy! A MIRACLE! Never forget that the Lord has a great plan for you and your life, Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Eli, I pray for you every day as I do my own children, for divine protection, wisdom to make good decisions, that you will always be surrounded by love and good friends in your life, and most of all I pray that wherever life's roads may lead you that your path always leads you back to Jesus. Your mama and daddy planted a beautiful seed in you and I can't wait to see it grow! Lots of Love, Christie Mancini xoxoxoxoxo

12: Eli, Your mom was incredible. Not only was she a friend, she was my children's nanny and like a daughter to me. We traded songs for worship, that was her heart. I miss her. Love you, Robin Prewitt | Dear Eli, From the moment I met your mother I knew she was a special person. Her love for the Lord, her family, and especially for you was obvious. She was also a fun person, and sang like an angel! It was a privilege to have known her. Love, Mildred Hart | "Getting ready to take the monkey to see the monkey at the zoo...I love spending time with Andy and Eli!!!" | -Jennifer May 31, 2010 at 11:09am

13: Dear Eli, Your Momma was a beautiful Momma! She loved you so much. She was a very good singer and, oh how she loved to sing! I'm sure she is singing so beautifully in Heaven right now! Eli, as you get older you may not remember your Momma much because you are so young but your Momma was the greatest Mom anyone could have. She was such a blessing to everyone she met. Oh Yes Eli! She was so cheerful even when she was so sick, she was so brave and had so much faith. We love your Momma and we love you too. Sister Dorothy Campbell

14: Hello Eli, Your Mom was loved very much. She touched the hearts of everyone that heard about her. She sang and worshiped her Lord, and this is what she loved to do. You knew she was around before you ever seen her! You could hear her laughter and know she was coming into the church. When she was in the hospital Jim would tell her he would bring his pistol and break her out of there! She would laugh and tell him, she was ready! She was someone special who we'll never forget as long as we live. God bless you and your family always, Jim and Betty Thompson | "I love living - if I have 29 bad days out of the month, I will praise Him for those bad days! If I have 1 good day out of the month, I will rejoice and still praise Him!" -Jennifer July 26, 2010 at 5:40pm

15: Dear Eli, Where do I begin? Your mommy is a very special person in my life. I've known her since she was a little girl and loved her the minute that I met her. I never had and biological daughter of my own, so your nana Dana let me be a part of your mommy's life for a long time. If I had given birth to a daughter...I would have asked for someone just like your mommy. She was perfect. I loved her little raspy voice and her beautiful freckles...She had a smile that would melt your heart and beautiful piercing blue eyes. I remember her in her little frilly laced socks and fluffy dresses...So cute and yet so rough too..She was so much fun. Everything she did...she did with all her might and put her whole self into it. Oh yeah...she had some spunk too...She was feisty and full of life, just like I expect you to be. :) As a teenager, you mom was still full of life and was so much fun to be around. Everyone who met her was her friend. At youth camp she was one of the favorites..everyone loved her. Those years are some of my very fondest years and I have cherished memories of your mommy there. She was always up to something, and always got away with it...because me and Rick....loved her and she was OUR GIRL...She is a lot like your Nana.. She was also very helpful..She would stay with us and do anything we needed done. One of my favorite memories is of her and a band she started for the talent contest called "The Flying BIrds"...Her and some friends would bang on the instruments and be silly...It was so hilarious...Everyone loved it.... Your mom was so funny.... But just as funny as your mommy was....she was serious...serious about her love for Jesus...Since an early age, she accepted Jesus into her heart and never looked back. Unlike most teens who walk away from God, you mommy was steadfast and true. She could always be found using her talents for God. God gave her a beautiful voice, and I don't ever remember a time that she didn't use it for God. She ministered in song and blessed so many people over her years. I loved to hear her sing with Amanda, her very best friend. Your mommy was so talented. Her piano playing another talent she had. God sure gave her a big dose of talent and she sure used it, but she was also humble. My boys loved your mommy. When they were little at camp, they would hang out with her and Uncle Gabe was one of their best buddies. Speaking of Uncle Gabe...She loved bubby....What a cool big sister she was. If anyone wanted a sister...they should want one like her. Your mommy even during her sickness was a blessing to others. Her faith and positive attitude inspired so many people. Her journey through it was tough, but you just didn't see her complaining. She remained faithful and kept bELIeving... You were perhaps given the most amazing, awesome, loving and kind hearted mother that anyone could ever ask for and I can't wait to see her through you. She loved you more than life itself and wanted nothing more in life than to be a mommy. Your Papa Paul and Nana Dana sure raised her right, because she was the best mommy. Your mommy found your Daddy and that is where true love met. They created you and you are a reflection of them both. You are very blessed to have a wonderful Mommy and a wonderful Daddy. You Eli Jackson Daniels....are a very special young boy....you were given the most awesome mother in the world. She was loved by all. Talk about her often with the people who knew her and you will find things out about her and learn new things each day. She will be watching you from Heaven and cheering you on ...She is your biggest fan! Love and Kisses.... Tammy Massingill AKA...Jennifer's other momma.... I love you Eli....always will......

16: bELIeve

17: Dear Eli, Words cannot describe how much your mother changed my life. I hope to be half the person she was. She taught me a lot about myself over this last year. I hope to one day have the faith she showed everyday. She is my inspiration to always live life to the fullest and enjoy every minute with your family and friends. I will never forget when I first met your mother. She got up one Sunday at church and sang a song. Her voice was the voice of an angel. It was strong like a lion, but as sweet and gentle like a lamb. She was praising the Lord with all that she had. I thought to myself who is this wonderful woman. I wanted to feel what she was feeling and get deep into the spirit like that. Little did I know that over the next year my faith would start growing more and more, but it would also be tested. I started in the Young Adult Praise Team and Class on Wednesday nights. I couldn’t wait until Wednesday’s because I had so much fun! We were all looking forward to Winterfest in Knoxville, TN. This trip is what brought me closer to your mother. Ryan and I got to ride in the van with your mom, dad and you! We had a BLAST! It was so early but we were all so excited we couldn’t keep our mouths shut! Your mom was so much fun; we laughed, we cried and as friends we grew closer to the Lord. We made late night Taco Bell runs because your mom and I craved the 5 layer burrito! Ha! One night when we got to the arena for Winterfest she had so much energy she got out of the van and started running down the street because we had to sit in traffic. I remember we were looking in the shops in Gatlinburg for a wood piece engraved with the word bELIeve. She wanted this so much because it reminded her of you, her little miracle. The trip was one that I will never forget. A few months later I started taking your mom to chemotherapy every other Tuesday. It was an all day event but I didn’t mind it because your mom was the best company I could ask for. On our way there we often stopped at McDonalds for a bite to eat and of course our favorite, the frappes’! We always watched “Dr. Oz” and “Say Yes, To the Dress.” Those were our definite shows we never missed. We sometimes watched movies, or searched the internet, but our “talks” were my favorite part. We would talk for hours and then she would say, “Now if I pass out on you, don’t take it personal, but this stuff makes me so tired!” Ha! She was a character; she always tried to make a joke out of things. I remember one day I came over just to hang out and your mom was so excited because she was going to drive and hadn’t in a long time. We got on the highway and she was like, “Sorry if it’s jerky, it’s been a while.” And we looked at each other and just started laughing. Your mom loved getting her nails done, but most of all a pedicure. She took me to get my second one ever and made me get the deluxe package with all the extra stuff. The funny thing is I can’t have one any other way now! One of the most memorable moments with your mom was the breast cancer walk, the “Race for the Cure” in Cincinnati. Our team was, “Marching for a Miracle.” We all had worked really hard in the months before the race to raise money and tell people about the cause. Our team was awesome and we had the BEST shirts in my opinion. On the back it said “We bELIeve in Jennifer.” Your mom was smiling from ear to ear that day. Seeing her face light up as she crossed the finish line was the highlight of my day. It made all the hard work, worth it all. I will always keep your mom close to my heart. I will never forget her kind spirit, contagious laugh, and her beautiful, deep blue eyes. But most of all I hope to gain her faith for the Lord. I will continue to bELIeve in Him. Whenever I am down, I know I can pick myself back up because through everything your mom still shined her light, so everyone could see. She was an amazing young woman. She was so strong and brave, fighting everyday with all she had. She was so true in her faith. You were her pride and joy. She talked about you more than anything. You were what she lived each day for. Know that you were her everything and still are. I hope to tell others about her story, because it is so inspirational to me. I will always remember miracles can happen, you just have to bELIeve Love always, Emily Wilson

18: Dear Eli Jackson Daniels, Your mother was one of the most amazing women I've ever had the pleasure of knowing. She was a lover and a fighter. She loved you and she fought to spend every day with you. I remember one day she decided she wanted to make you a Curious George blanket and pillow to go with your Curious George-themed room. We layed the material across the kitchen table and started working away. It wasn't easy but she wanted to learn to do it for you. Of course she made your dad come and help us. The three of us cut and tied until our arms were tired but your mom was so happy to do it for you. She loved you very much and I know that you now have an angel watching over you guiding and protecting you. I love you Eli! Mandy Kischuk

19: "Eli is crawling - he is just crawling backwards!!! I've never seen that before.... lol" -Jennifer February 2, 2010 at 3:46pm

20: Dear Eli, I have known your mommy for many years. You see, my daughter (Amanda) and your mommy were best friends. I think they were really sisters, born to different mothers. She was a treasure and I loved her like a daughter. Your mom and dad came home for Christmas the year that she was newly pregnant with you. When they came through the door the day after Christmas, she had a little recorder in her hand, and she took it around to everyone in the room so they could hear your heartbeat. To her it was the most beautiful sound in the world. You see, she was crazy about you when you were just a heartbeat. And you always were "her heartbeat". She loved you more than our words could say. I can't wait to see her again one day. I love you Eli!! Sharon Shepherd

21: "It is a perfect day.... beautiful outside and Eli's smile in contagious!!!!" -Jennifer April 5, 2010 at 3:23pm

22: Dear Eli, It was an honor and a privilege for us to know your mother and to serve our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ with her at Praise Chapel, Church of God. She was an amazing woman!! Her faith never wavered in her God. Testimony after testimony came back to us about how she blessed those she came in contact with. She was a bright light shining for our Lord and an encourager wherever she went. Your mom was loved by so many! She sang like an angel with a glorious voice. The mighty anointing of God was upon her!! Eli, we will never forget the day you were born. Your mom and dad were so very proud of you !! They were so thankful to God for the miracle they had been blessed with in you - little precious Eli! When the doctors didn’t give much hope for you to be born normal - your mom and dad would not accept that and they put their faith in God and trusted that you were going to be a healthy baby boy and you, Eli, were born normal - against all odds. Your testimony has been a blessing to more people than you will ever know.... all because your mom was a mighty woman of faith. She even designed “bELIeve” to remind us what God had done. Eli - we know that God has a special plan for you - for he tells us in His Word “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” - Jeremiah 29:11 Only “bELIeve”!! Our Love In Christ, Pastor John and Cheri Douglas Praise Chapel Cincinnati, Ohio 2011 | bELIeve

23: "Well... when it comes down to it all, I have a lot I could complain about BUT ~ I have so much more to be thankful for, I am truely and wonderfully BLESSED!!!" -Jennifer November 29, 2010 at 10:19pm

25: Precious Eli, What I would like for you to know about your Mom, is that she was one of the bravest, hardest fighting women of faith that I have ever met. When she sang, you could feel the anointing. She loved Jesus and was not ashamed to let everyone know it. I know that she wanted you so desperately and loved you so much, and was so thankful that God had given you to her. My prayer for you is that you continue the path that your Mother walked, that you become a mighty man of God and that he blesses and keeps you until the day that your Mom holds you in her arms again, where there will be no more sorrow, no pain, no tears, and no death for Jesus has overcome death, hell and the grave. What a time that will be when we are all reunited in Heaven. May God bring comfort, peace and love to you! Connie Goble | Dear Eli, I only knew your mom for about 3 or 4 years. She had such a beautiful spirit about her. I remember traveling to Columbus to sing with her and the praise team from Milford. That night the preacher there prophesied and told her she would get pregnant. She rode home with me that night and we talked all about that. Not to much longer down the road she became pregnant with you. You were such a miracle from the Lord. Your mom will always be an inspiration to me. Love, Mindy Pendleton

26: Dear Eli, I mostly knew your mommy when she was just a girl and then I saw her again when she was pregnant with you. She was one of the most carefree and fun-loving people I have ever had the privilege to know; always laughing and making others laugh, too. That quality was truly a gift from God. Her and your daddy were absolutely over the moon awaiting your arrival. You were her hearts desire and she truly loved you more than life itself! You come from a great gene pool, Kiddo! Love, Pam Moore

27: Dear Eli: I wanted to write a few lines to talk about your mom Jennifer. But first, I want to say what a joy you have been in our church and in our lives. From when your mom carried you - till the day you were born, we all at Praise Chapel could not wait to meet you. See, your parents and grandparents started coming to our church right about the time your mom found out she was carrying you. When we learned about your mom’s illness, everyone prayed in great earnest that you would be born whole and healthy, and what a beautiful baby you were. She loved you so much. You were her joy. Your mom was an amazing person. I didn’t get to know her as well as other people but what I did know, she taught me a lot. I feel bad thinking about it now, but when she wanted me to sing solo parts in choir I always wanted to play the stubborn card and not sing because I honestly had stage fright and thought my voice was not good enough. But she nicely pushed me and gave me some encouragement, now I try and pray I don’t hurt too many ears. I grew to love your mom and respected her greatly. She taught me to try and not complain about the little things and keep moving on and not to give up. Your mom had a great sense of humor and loved to laugh and wanted to be where the fun was, no matter how bad she was feeling. Not only did she touch lives at Praise Chapel, she was an inspiration to all who knew her. She loved God greatly and it showed in her. She seemed to be this little beacon of light everywhere she went. You knew there was something different about Jennifer even before you talked to her. She sang and praised God all the time. What a joy she was to be around. We might have lost a wonderful and loving woman, your mom, but Heaven gained a new angel when God called her home. I can’t wait to see her again. You can be PROUD of your mom. Everyone loved her and greatly appreciated everything she did. She was a true testament of what a Christian should be. Love Always, Celeste Thompson

28: "Listening to Eli snore - soooo precious, Listening to Andy snore - hurts my ears... Not being able to fall asleep from all the snoring - so not priceless... lol" -Jennifer November 7, 2010 at 10:12pm

29: Dear Eli, Well little handsome, there are too many wonderful things about your mommy. I would be here for days telling you about all the wonderful memories. Your mommy was amazing. She was a wonderful Aunt to your cousins Cadee and Brayden. They can tell you some stories too someday. Your mommy would watch Cadee and Brayden for me when I worked. One day I came to pick them up and your cousin Brayden had blue hair!! Brayden was smiling from ear to ear and so was your momma!! She made everyday fun. She was a wonderful sister-in-law too, more like a sister. Your sweet momma had a strong faith and a beautiful voice. She is the one that got your Uncle Nathan to start singing in the church choir. I could go on and on. You are loved little man, Uncle Nate, Aunt Dee, Cousin Cadee and Brayden | Dear Eli, I am your Uncle Nathan's Mom, Beckie, and your mother was a treasure. Things that stay in my memories are the way your daddy's face lit up when she came in the room. She was the only person to call your cousin by her middle name "Louise"! One incident in particular, I was at Uncle Nathan and Aunt Dees house when "Louise" came home from school and announced that no one believed that her Aunt Jen had lost her hair. In true Jen fashion, you mother commented "I can put a light bulb in my mouth like Uncle Phestus and you can take me for show and tell !!" What a wonderful sense of humor and great faith your mother had, a true inspiration to all! I am looking forward to watching you grow up and seeing the light in your daddy's face as he watches his baby boy! The Norts Garry and Beckie { Louise's gma and poppy }

30: Dear Eli We didn't know you mom long but she touched our hearts and our lives. It wasn't just anyone who could get Ed off the back pew and into the choir, but your mom did. She was so excited about the choir and involved anyone who wanted to sing. When she worked with the choir she helped everyone with their parts, she could sing the very low parts to the very high parts. Your mom was a true woman of faith and led by example. She was such an inspiration. Your mom was a wonderful woman and so easy to love and in the short time we knew her we loved her. She was very special. Ed and Rhonda Cresie | Dear Eli, On this glorious Mother's Day I want to tell you about your wonderful mother. I first met her at Praise Chapel Church where I attended for some time. The first thing I noticed about her was her beautiful face and heart-warming smile. Then I heard her sing, What a BEAUTIFUL voice! She sounded like I always thought the angels would sound when they were singing. And how she could play the keyboard! We were all so blessed by her music. And then one day you were born. Another blessing! You were (and are) so adorable! You have the look in your bright eyes that the Lord will use you in a great way. Every time you mother (and your father and grandparents) entered the church they brought a blessing to everyone else. Every time I saw her she was beautiful to see. She had such an angelic look and when she walked into the church she brought an aura of faith and love with her. I am happy that I met her and she was a blessing and inspiration to everyone. You have a wonderful family and I love all of you! June Lane

31: "Don't take the small things for granted - once they are gone... you don't know how good you had it"- Jennifer September 17, 2010 at 8:50am

32: "I love rainy days - holding Eli as he sleeps (when he sleeps) there is no greater feeling in the world!" - Jennifer May 12, 2010 at 2:20pm

33: Dearest Eli, I am your mom's second cousin. I knew her mostly as a little girl. She was just as special then. I see pictures of you and it reminds me of her sweet face that I so remember. Your mom grew up to be a strong christian spreading the word of God in her musical talents wherever she traveled to. Let's not break this thread. Keep the torch lit. Tell others about our wonderful Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Your mom may have left us for a little while but we will be reunited soon! Let's take as many people with us as we can. You have a wonderful heritage. Be proud of who you are. May the Lords blessings be with you in all you do! Love, Karen & Kenny Jacobs

34: Dear Eli, Your mother was just a young girl when I first met her. I think she was about 16. She was singing in church, of course. I remember thinking what a big voice for such a little girl. She was so anointed and I fell in love with her laugh and exploding personality. My daughter Cheyenne was about 4 at the time and had been through a lot of sickness. Your mommy used to come and stay with us at the hospital; which always was a pick me up for me. Keeping me laughing and encouraging me when I wanted to loose my cool. Making me watch who wants to be a millionaire. She would say, "I know that answer, see I need to go on that show, I could win a lot of money......At least enough to buy a car" her eyes all big and full of laughter. She loved worship and she was such a great choir leader at such a young age. At Goshen she was the TNT choir director and if I am not mistaken she was still in high school. I never will for get when she came to me and ask me how old I was and when I told her 27 she of course giggled and said, "Oh goody, you can be in the choir" and so I was, and I am so thankful for the invite today. I have a lot of great memories and we all got to serve the KING together. The last time I saw your mommy she had just had you, she was walking around the church at Milford during a visitation and she was GLOWING, SHINING WITH PRIDE, as she held you in her arms. I said, "Look at you, you are a mommy" she smiled with her whole face and said, "Can you believe it, it is about time" Her love for you was all over her. Her faith in the Lord up until the last was a testimony that I will share as often as I can. Faith like that is not seen every day. She was stubborn yes, but her faith in God was pure. That I will never forget and I know so many others will not forget it either. Take care sweet baby boy, you are left with a wonderful father and grand parents that love you deeply. Serve the Lord with gladness, that is what she would want you to do. Who knows some day you may be a great worship leader yourself. If that is the case, I hope to see God use you in a mighty way. With all my love and prayers, Kristen Luckey

35: Dear Eli, I remember your mom as a happy wonderful person.When I was about 3 or 4 years old she and I played dress up, and we had a fashion show. We laughed and had a wonderful time. Another memory I have of Jennifer is she came to my 6th birthday party and we took goofy pictures of us. All together Jennifer was a gr8 friend I loved her very much. I always know she could touch the lives of people. I WILL ALWAYS LOVE JENNIFER! CHEYENNE | "Some days you just got to dance!" - Jennifer July 30, 2010 at 10:37pm

36: "With everything that is going on, I can honestly say that I am sooooo blessed... | I am a daughter of the King!" - Jennifer March 2, 2010 at 8:45pm

37: "My baby is walking.... and he is walking good! I can't believe he will be turning 1 next week! Where has the year gone... " - Jennifer May 24, 2010 at 9:16pm | Dear Eli, I worked with your Mom at Promark before she was married or even had thoughts of children. She was the cutest little thing, always happy, smiling and full of energy! She would bounce around the office with that smile that never ends! She was so much fun to work with and she brought light to our office. One of my favorite memories was lunch out to Don Pablos restaurant. Your mom loved the tortillas. She would order a small lunch and then have dessert... Free tortillas and chocolate sauce! She was so proud to teach us all about free dessert at Don Pablos! I haven't seen your Mom in many years but she made a loving impact on my life. I'm so glad to have known her, my life is better for it! I have a daughter, your Mom used to play with her at the office, and my daughter, Brooke, now has free dessert at Don Pablos too! Hugs & Kisses, Sue Rowley

38: Dear Eli, The thing I remember most about your Mom is her laugh, and her clear sparkling eyes. My children were in the same youth group with your mom, so I used to see her quite often. One thing I can tell you is she sure loved to have fun, and could always make people laugh. I didn't see her a whole lot after she became an adult, but I can tell you that she loved you more than life its self.You were truely the love of her life, and all she had hoped for.It saddens me to know that you will never get to know her in this life and to know what a great mom she would have been to you, but there is a better day coming. Just cling to Jesus the way that your mommy did and you will see her again. I love you and pray for you and your whole family all the time. Keep the faith Eli, and your faith will keep you. Love Debbie Silverthorn

39: "My baby is the big 1 today, where does time go... Happy Birthday Eli!!!!" -Jennifer June 4, 2010 at 9:14am

40: Hi Eli, Your mommy was the most amazing woman and so beautiful. I have known your mom my entire life because my mom and your nana were very close. I called your mom my cousin because we were all so close. I have some great memories with her. From singing Kirk Franklin out the windows of our old Jeep to going shopping for my school dance dresses a few times a year. I loved your mom very much. I looked up to her so much. If there was anyone I want to be like its her. She was like the big sister I never had. When my mom and I would come down to visit her and the family, she always made me laugh and smile. We would go on trips together and she always complained about sleeping with me because I moved and kicked in my sleep. I never thought I did, but each morning when I would wake up she would always say you kicked me again last night Chels. I would just smile and laugh, and do it all again the next night. You have a great family Eli and they have always been there for me. Never forget how much they all love you and how much your mom loved you because you are the reason she fought so hard! She was an amazing girl Eli with the most beautiful voice that would give you chills everytime you heard her sing. She is definitely someone that no one could/will ever forget. You are all in my prayers. I love you Eli and I love you all, Chelsea Matzinger

41: Dear Eli - I have never met you, but from your eyes and smile, I see your beautiful Mama. Jennifer and I went to junior high and high school together in Monroe, MI. From the very first moment that we met, we became dear friends. Your grandma Dana and grandpa Paul lived down the street from me and my family, along with your mama, Jennifer, and your uncle, Gabriel. Jennifer and I would spend tons of time over one another's house and we always had such a blast! Your mom was REALLY FUNNY! She had such a joy for life and a great sense of humor. I always loved going over to the Wiggingtons because I always felt so welcome and we always had so much fun. Jennifer and I were in choir together throughout school. This is where we became really close friends. Your Mom could SING! Boy! She would give you chills every time she opened up that mouth of hers. For a white girl, she had a lot of SOUL. We LOVED singing together and praising God. Jennifer was so tiny, but had this huge voice that would knock your socks off! I will always remember the times we spent together in choir, at her house, singing at Mountain Assembly whenever I would visit with her there, going on a choir trip to Toronto, and even one time where she played my mother in a play at school! That was really funny... She always had such a bright and lively (if not firecracker) spirit. Later on in her life, I was so moved by her faith and the way that she sought to bring God glory in everything she did. Especially when she was struggling with cancer. She is an inspiration to all of us on the gift of FAITH. Your Mama was a precious soul and daughter of God. I am so blessed to have known her and shared in those few years of life together when we were teenagers. She made a lasting impression on me that I will never forget and I can't wait to get to Heaven to sing with her once more! I know that I love you, even though I've never met you, because I loved your Mama and you are a part of her. Love -Milan Cronovich Los Angeles, CA

42: Dear Eli I met your mommy at church camp...I went up there to play the piano for the choir and I quickly found out that your momma was the most amazing singer at just 14 and 15 years old. She also was probably the most popular kid in camp! Everyone loved her...you couldn't help but love her! She was seriously hilarious...I can remember playing the piano for her, and if one of us made a mistake, we'd just cover it up and laugh about it later! You grandparents had a cabin up at the church campgrounds and they would let me sleep there...your nonni and your momma and I would stay up all night...laughing and telling crazy stories. Your mommy LOVED to sneak out and go run around just laughing and having fun. She'd always make your grandpa make homeade ice cream...it was the first time I had ever had it and she was right, it was so good!! (have your papaw make it for you!) Your mom was the most talented young woman I knew. She could not only sing, but she would play that piano like a pro! She amazed me because her hands were so little, yet she was amazing at it. She called me when she found out she was pregnant with you...she was SOOOO excited!!! We talked about names and and she knew she wanted "Jackson" in there somewhere. Let me tell you something about your momma. She had the love of Jesus. She extended mercy and grace to people when others had turned their backs on them. She never gave up on anyone. She seemed to forgive and forget....and I loved her so much for that. Your mommy loved Jesus with all of her heart. Her hearts desire was to serve Him always...and she did. She was blessed with wonderful parents, just as you have been. Your daddy, nonni and papaw are amazing people. You're uncle Gabe is the coolest uncle ever! When my little boy was your age, your momma and your nonni would give him a bath and babysit him...they influenced his life in an amazing way...you are blessed and so loved Eli. Carry that legacy with you. Carry your momma's love for Jesus in your heart always...she is so proud of you and watches over you. Love Kristi Smith

43: Dear Eli, Your mom was a wonderful and strong woman of God. When my son, Logan was born and was very sick she always let me know she was praying for him as well as my family. Then once Logan was healthy and you were too we always thought it would be great to get the both of you together. You were both such miracles. She was the type of person that even if she didn't know you well you could always count on her and know that she was praying for your needs. She will always be missed and she loved you and her family very much. Carrie Beavers | "I love life..." - Jennifer April 6, 2010 at 10:20pm

44: Dear Eli, Hey man it is your Uncle Corey. So I guess I am supposed to tell you about your mommy. This might end up being a pretty long letter because she was such an awesome person. I have known your mom for as long as I can remember. We first knew each other from church camp. Then when we moved to Cincinnati we started going to church at the same church she went to, where your pappy was the associate pastor. The first time I remember seeing your mom at that church was in kids choir. Your nonna was the leader of the choir and one Sunday during church your mom came back and she was wearing this very pretty blue dress. She came back to help you nonna teach us and boy could she sing. We used to go out to eat all the time after church and I thought your mom was the coolest person ever. Well when I was 7 years old my dad died of a heart attack. I rode with your pappy in his truck to Cleveland where we had a funeral at my church there. On the way down to the church your pappy played a tape that your mom and her best friend Amanda sang on. I loved it. Your pappy gave me the tape and I still have it and sometimes when I miss your mom I listen to it. When we got back my mom worked at the hospitol during the night so she needed someone to watch us. And your mom wanted to do it. At the time she was only seventeen or eighteen, but she loved us and we loved her. She was the BEST babysitter ever. We had so many fun times and she let us do so many cool things. We would be with her and we would tell her we wanted to hang out with Andy, your dad. She loved having fun and your dad was fun. Me and my sister always told her she should get married to your dad. She never listened to us. But eventually she did listen to us and she married him. I found out that she got married to your dad because she left a note for us at her house on a piece of blue tissue paper. She also left us her food from the dinner her and your daddy had. Your mom and dad together made the best team ever. We did so many fun things with them. So now I am going to give you my top ten favorite things I did with your mom, and some with your dad and hopefully when you are older I can go do some of those things with you. 10. Helping your mom babysit all these little kids when I was a teenager. If your mom loved anything it was children. And when she and your dad had a house she babysat as her job. So sometimes during the summer I would get to stay at her house and help he watch the kids. 9. Helping your mom and dad and nonna and pappy renovate your nonna's house. We had a lot of fun times even when I was older. I was probably fourteen or fifteen then and your mom took me to help do projects at the house. If you ever get old enough and you are living in the same house lift up a carpet mat in the laundry room and under it is tile. I put that tile down with your nonna. 8. Kids choirs. Your mom could sing and she loved teaching the kids how to sing too. She used to pick the best songs for us to sing. 7. Dr. Newheart. When I was 7 or 8 I was in a Christmas play at church and I had some main part and your mom was Dr. Newheart. Halfway through the play I got sick and went off the stage, puked in the bathroom, and got back up to sing again. BEST CHRISTMAS PLAY EVER!!!!! 6. Church car wash. We had a church carwash to raise money for the church your dad pastored at. Your mom was watching us that weekend and she took us to it and it was tons of fun. I have pictures I will have to show you sometime. 5. Dinner after church. We used to have dinner after church all the time. I would always want to sit with her or your uncle Gabe cause they were cool.

45: "So it's Monday!!! Eli is trying out different laughs to see what works for him if only you could hear him...OMG - the boy will make you bust a gut!" - Jennifer March 29, 2010 at 9:52am | 4. One Tree Hill. This is actually when I was older. Your mom watched this show and when I was over at your house I would watch it with her. She got me hooked on it. I have every season on DVD and I love the show. Your mom and I wanted to take a trip to Wilmington NC where it was filmed at to see all the scenes but we never got to. So that is going to be a trip I want to take with you when you are older. 3. When I was 7 your mom watched me at her apartment. The man she was married to then had some very bad things that a 7 year old should not see. Well I thought those magazines I found were so funny and I got in trouble from your mom for looking at them. 2. DAVE AND BUSTERS. Before your mom and dad were married they used to take us to places. One time they took us to this game place called Dave and Busters. There was this machine there that took pictures of your mom and dad and predicted what their kid would look like. When the picture came out it was the ugliest picture I have ever seen in my life. It was nothing like the real thing. You are much better looking than that picture. 1. BIG MOMMA'S HOUSE AND HOHO'S When I was seven your mom let us watch Big Momma's house and it was my first PG13 movie. While watching that your mom fed us hoho's for breakfast. So when you are 7 your Uncle Corey is gonna feed you Hoho's and let you watch Big Momma's House. There are so many more memories that I have with your mom Eli. She had a huge influence on my life. I plan on instilling many of the things that your mommy taught me in you. If you ever have questions about her I can always tell you good things about her. I LOVE YOU LITTLE MAN. BABY WHISKEY. LOVE, UNCLE COREY

46: "What a beautiful day, took Eli to the doctor today and the doc said he is very advanced for his age especially for being a preemie, he couldn't believe it... Thank you Jesus for my miracle baby!!!"- Jennifer April 12, 2010 at 6:34pm

47: My Dearest Eli, This letter to you, even at the age you are now is so important. It will one day hopefully become very important to you and although its the hardest thing I have done in a very long time, its already extremely important to me. As I am sure you can tell by all the letters in this book, your mother touched the heart of every person she ever knew. Unlike many of the people in this book, I cant say I grew up with your mother or that I went to camp with her, knew her back when or tell you stories about the best girlfriend sleep overs that we had when we were younger. However, I can say that in the few years I had with her, I don't feel one bit cheated because she had a way of making everyone feel special and giving them all her love and attention whether she knew them a few days or for a life time. I'm sure that by now you know that your mom was a great one but, let me just drive it home by saying that everything your mom wanted in life was for you! She loved you more than this book of words could say. You are her little miracle. Your mom would start each day saying a little something like " Good morning Father, good morning Son and good morning Holy Spirit, thank you for my little miracle" and then she would say "Good morning Eli" and she would just play and love on you to make sure each and every day of yours started off with smiles and love. I am so thankful for the time I did get with your mom, watching her watch you, praying with her for you, laughing with her at you and all the silly little things you do. Again, I wouldn't change a thing about when I met your mom. I got to know her when she was her very happiest. I got to watch her watch you. I got to spend time with her and make memories with her while she was doing her most cherished and favorite thing...loving you! We love you so very much, and although we love and miss your mom greatly, the days are easier because we can watch her now though you, her favorite thing, her little miracle. Love you, Aaron Grivois

48: Eli, Simple words could never be enough to tell you about your mom, her love and desire to bring you into this world, her strength and faith to keep fighting to stay here with you. SHE WAS everything that God says we should be, her voice and her spirit lifted so many people all throughout her life, her laugh was incredible and that's how I will always remember her laughing and singing, she was so funny and beautiful and she is forever my hero. Michele Brewer Hatfield | "I love spending time with my family... Hearing Eli laugh is the best sounds in the world!!!" - Jennifer July 12, 2010 at 9:26pm

49: Dear Eli, I want to thank you for sharing with us at Praise Chapel your beautiful mother Jennifer. She left a thumb print on so many people’s hearts. I know her courage and faith found a home in my heart that she will forever hold. I bELIve God sent her as an angel sent to inspire our faith and show that standing to the end is “Gonna be worth it”. Your family came to our church the year your mom was pregnant with you. I remember her smile that showed in her eyes. If anyone would mention her baby or when you would come she would light up like a Christmas tree. Eli, you were one wanted boy. She was so excited and full of love when she spoke of you. After you were born, the pride and adoration she had for you was immeasurable. I would be in the back with the children and hear her singing and stop the lesson to open our door to see who was making such beautiful music for the Lord. When she was worshiping in song, you would never know she was ill. Soon, God was waking me up night after night to pray for Jennifer. After you were born and her treatments started God put your mother on my heart so often that I figured if I wasn’t going to get any sleep over this girl, I might as well get to know her. This is a decision I will forever be thankful for. She was so genuine in her beliefs. She moved us with her conviction and courage. She cemented herself in my heart when I would see her showing concern for how others were feeling or doing. Amazing. That was who she was Eli. She was God’s gift to us here at Praise Chapel. She illustrated what God expects His children to be like. She radiated love both for Him and His people. Her unwavering faith and love lasted until the end. I will forever be grateful for having known your mother. She was an angel that touched so many people’s lives and left a legacy in you of love, enduring courage, and unfaltering faith. Love Jennifer Nelson | "Nothing makes me happier, than to see Eli with his Uncle Gabe laughing and playing. I don't know who laughs more Eli or Gabe... I love my family!!!" -Jennifer October 16, 2010 at 12:58am

51: "What can I say - I LOVE MY LIFE!!! Everyday is an adventure and a gift, I never want to take it for granted! The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my strength I am nothing without Him. He blessed me with the greatest family and the best husband... I don't know what I'd do without him!" -Jennifer | Dear Eli, Your mama was such a special woman in my life. I was only lucky enough to know her a little over 2 years, but let me tell you, she has impacted my life in a way that I will carry with me forever! She had a radiance about her that could bring light into any room. Just being in her presence filled my heart with joy. Oh how I loved to sing with her! She had the voice of an angel. One of the most anointed voices I have ever heard! I pray that in your dreams at night you are able to hear her heavenly voice. She loved you very much and would have given you the stars and the moon if she could have. You are her sweet boy, a miracle, and you were born with a purpose. My prayer for you is that you grow in the Lord, live out and fulfill your purpose that He has set before you, that you can hear your mother’s song, and ALWAYS feel her love. With all my love, Stacy Wallace

52: "I love my son... he is amazing! " -Jennifer December 28, 2010 at 10:55am

53: Dear Eli, Just know this one thing: Your mother loves you. I remember talking to her the day she found out she was pregnant. I have never heard more joy in her voice than on that day. Every time she would have a sonogram done she would marvel at every little thing about you. I always wanted to see the sonogram pictures mostly because I loved hearing and seeing her talk about them. “Here’s my little peanut. Look at him. Just look at his hands! Oh they are beautiful. And his feet. He’s perfect. Isn’t he perfect !?! ” Driving home from one of the appointments where she got to see you before you were born, it seemed like the whole conversation was “Isn’t he just amazing!” Yes Eli, you are. She saw and felt amazingness in every little thing about you even before you were born. Then the day you were born, just minutes after you arrived, the joy in her eyes was overwhelmingly contagious. Seeing you made her heart smile a smile so big everyone else could feel it. Not just that day but everyday. During hours of treatment there was much talk about you. You were her joy. At every appointment, it didn’t matter what the doctors had just said, if someone asked about you her mood shifted for at least that moment. You brought joy to those moments. She’d always say, “I know I’m partial, but isn’t my baby the best!” Yes Eli, you are and to her there could never be better. There could never be better because you made her days better. You made them better because you were her joy. She loved you. If I know anything about your mom, I know she loved you. Love, Abby

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