Crunching In the Snow!


She sparkles everywhere we go, like sunlight glinting off snow. People ask, or stare until I feel obligated to answer their curiosity. I don’t mind really, I rather prefer that people ask why she has a tube in her nose or why she’s bald with a big squiggly scar on her head. It seems silly to ignore the obvious in these encounters. And her joy commands attention wherever she inhabits space, so it’s not as if she can be ignored. I’m so proud of her and how her struggle has only magnified her happy spirit. She elicits empathy from everyone she meets and her life proclaims “If I can do this, YOU can get through anything!” And I watch people respond to that message, often moved to tears by the revelation, and I feel like a steward of the most incredible gift a Mom could possess.

She walks through the snow, “I am CRUNCHING this snow!” she says. We have a had a beautiful time, save a little altitude sickness and a cough or two. We are staying in an incredible, 3 story cabin overlooking majestic mountain peaks blanketed with powder. In the mornings after breakfast, the boys take to the hill beside our cabin with their plastic sleds or build snowmen or have sno-ball fights. Phoebe and Deacon play Candyland or hide-and-seek or build snow castles with beach buckets and shovels on the porch. Nathan and I sip coffee and enjoy God’s artistry through the huge floor-to-ceiling windows and make plans for the day and plans for life. Make-A-Wish has outdone themselves with this trip. They sent us a huge box on our second day here with a S’mores kit, a snow-castle kit, a “how to make snow ice-cream” kit and a snowman kit. Last night they sent us up the mountain in a sleigh, drawn by beautiful Belgian horses to a yurt (yes a yurt!) where we dined on a homemade meal with live music from a solo guitarist. Half way through dinner Averic left the yurt to go outside to port-a-potty and he rushed back in saying there was a fox outside. We all went to look, and there, maybe 5 feet from us, was the most striking little fox in the snow waiting for the waitress to give him some food. She calls him “my fox” and feeds him regularly and he often makes and appearance at these dinners.

I can’t fully relay what I felt when I saw that beautiful creature up so close, so trusting of us, but it was a supernatural encounter. It was a gift. A lot of little gifts this week have added up to one big God-orchestrated trip for us. The one last parking spot up close to our destination that we seem to get every time on the busy Main Street in Breckenridge. The owner at the Twin Moose yogurt shop who gave the kids T-shirts and showed Phoebe her puppies on her iPhone, the way her love emanated towards our girl and our family. The lady at the 5 star ski-lodge who heard about our family and gave us a day pass to have our own private movie theatre and swim in the heated pool in the snow. A home-school Mom who is a photographer who heard about us and offered to take family photos for us on the mountain and with the horses. So many people, so much goodwill and we feel so taken care of.

Today we will visit the children’s museum, go ice-skating and ride the gondola. Tomorrow we will pack up and prepare to head back to Texas. Phoebe misses Matilda, her cat, and Sadie and Howdy, her dogs. This has been a dream vacation for all of us and we have been so blessed every step of the way. Phoebe’s health has been excellent and her sodium levels seem to be doing great. Not ONE trip to the ER for labs, and THAT is an accomplishment! Thank you, people of Colorado, Make A Wish, friends and family who have stayed at our house to care for our animals and plants and baby chicks, friends who loaned us snow-gear…thank you for making Phoebe’s wish come true. She got to see snow, play in snow, SWIM in the snow, sleigh in the snow, throw snow-balls. It has been awesome.

He is good to us, Amey

About Amey Fair

I am Amey Fair, wife to Nathan, and home-educating Mom to Benjamin (9), Averic (7), Deacon (4) and Phoebe (2) . Phoebe was diagnosed with a rare childhood malignant brain cancer called Atypical Teratoid Rabdoid Tumor on January 1, 2012. She had complete resection surgery to remove the tumor on January 4th and began chemotherapy using the Dana Farber protocol on January 26th. A few weeks ago I was sleeping in the chair next to Phoebe's bed in the hospital when I heard her little voice drawing me out of sleep. It was 3 am and it took me a minute to shake off the slumber. "Mommy I'm a mean girl" I thought she said. "No Phoebe, you're a nice girl!" I replied. "No Mommy, I'm a MIRACLE!" Phoebe said. "I'm a MIRACLE, I'm a MIRACLE, I'm a MIRACLE!" she continued on. My tears welled up and spilled over as she made her declaration. Phoebe doesn't know the word "miracle" nor the concept, she's only 2. It was as if the Lord was speaking through her like a prophetic utterance. She fell right back to sleep and I sat there awake, lingering in the magical moment. Less than 40 children are diagnosed with Phoebe's type of cancer in the U.S. each year. This is why it's called "ATYPICAL Teratoid Rabdoid Tumor". So, I have titled this blog in honor of Phoebe, our "Atypical Miracle". We are YWAM'ers, serving in missions through Youth With A Mission since 1998. Before returning to the states 1 year ago, we lived near Guadalajara Mexico for 3 years. It was during our year of agricultural missions training in Waco, TX that Phoebe began exhibiting symptoms from the pressure of the tumor on her brain. Weight loss, lethargy, extreme thirst and vomiting were her symptoms. We have been granted sabbatical during this time to focus on Phoebe's intensive chemotherapy treatment and are renting a home in Dallas near the Children's hospital where Phoebe is being treated. Like the woman who touched the hem of Jesus' robe in Luke chapter 8, we cling to Him, knowing that He is Phoebe's healer. If we can just touch Him, be near Him, bring Phoebe to Him each day, we have hope. He is our hope. Thank you for coming along on this journey with our family. It's therapeutic for me to write it all out, and in so doing, I hope God will use it for His glory.

26 responses »

  1. Praise God! I am so glad that the Fair Family received this miracle trip and for all the special people who made it possible πŸ™‚ Prayers for a safe trip home! CONGRATS, Phoebe , and Thank God for no ER trips.

  2. Thank you for sharing this wonderful adventure. I am so happy for your family. May God keep blessing y’all everyday.

  3. Amey, It is so GREAT to hear how your family is doing family things, all together! This must be plain joy to your heart to have this wonderful little girl of yours out there having a good time and inspiring others along the way. It warms my heart just seeing the photographs and the smiles on the faces of your children. Praise God for the chance to just be a family again and for the wonderful progression Phoebe has made. He is truly great and you are truly blessed!

  4. Yes, praising God, too for His amazing provision and for a memory making trip that you will never forget. So thankful that Phoebe was able to enjoy, enjoy, enjoy without a single trip to the ER. And what amazing, giving people you met along the way! Amey, you look so happy in the photos! Praying God’s continued blessings and rest/refreshment for you and yours — Jeannie

  5. Awwww, so happy to read your blogs!! They almost always make me tear up πŸ™‚ happy to hear you are all having a splendid vacation! Xoxo

  6. Yes, Miss little Miracle is still Miss little sunshine! Go shine his light into the world! We’re blessed by your report of an awesome trip! Have a save return! LoL Chris

  7. So hard to read this without spilling tearsof great joy!! Thank you for sharing & so happy to hear about her sodium levels. I’m believing for full restoration of every part of Phoebe’s body!! Praise God for a season of restoration!

  8. Okay. So I read this and cried tears of joy. Praises for your wonderful mountain top experience in the snow. The photos are beautiful!

  9. Wonderful Wonderful Wonderful!!!! So glad you all had a great time. I checked daily because I didn’t want to miss any updates, and I am so glad it was a great trip!!!! Pheobe just shares her joy every where she goes!!!! Praise God!!!!

  10. Awesome! Such a blessing to see you all healthy and smiling. Tears of happiness, what a magical time! Praise the Lord!

  11. I am so glad God provided this fantastic trip for you Phoebe. And it was nice of you to take your family with you.

    Thank you Make A Wish for giving Phoebe a fun trip.

    I am still praying for you Little One.

    I used to tell my kids this when it was bed time.

    Jesus & Mommy & Daddy Love you and the Angels will be by you.

    I pray this for you Phoebe.

  12. Amey, you just make me smile and cry at the same time! I am SOOOO happy for you all and I’m SOOOO glad you got this Make-A-Wish Trip. OK, I must get back to work amidst all these tears and smiles and happy heart!
    God bless and bless and bless,

  13. I am so glad to hear that your Make a Wish trip is going along just fine and the kids are having a blast. πŸ™‚ I think you chose the best trip ever, but then again I am very partial to snow as I live in Northern Canada and love snow.

    Praying and praying!!

  14. LOVE this post- you all looks so- can I say this- NORMAL!!!!! I also love the transparency about having people ask what is gonig on with Phoebe!! I am an ‘asker’ myself and over the years thse closest to me have become accustomed to that- THANK you for being such an inspirational woman and Mommy Amey!! πŸ™‚

  15. What an awesome post with lots of good pictures! I am so happy you guys got this opportunity and that everything was just perfect for all of you besides the cough and high altitude problems. Looks beautiful there. So glad that Phoebe is loving and living life to the fullest now. God knows you ALL deserved this little vacation. Blessing to you all.

  16. It absolutely delights me to see all of you having such fun. I am thrilled that there have been no ER visits to mar the good time you’re all having. Phoebe looks healthy and strong and all the other kids seem to be finding tons to do to keep her involved while having their own fun.

    I’m sorry that we even have to have Make a Wish Foundations, simply because it means a child has had a major health battle. That said, I’m happy to support the Make a Wish Foundations, for the amazing things they do for those same kids.

    Safe travels home and may God continue to hold you all safe in His loving arms.


  17. Hello! This is Amy from Make-A-Wish, Tyler office. Thank you so much for sharing your trip with us! I am so happy to see these pictures and all the big smiles in them πŸ™‚ And I’m really glad to hear that Phoebe and family had great time together!!! Have a safe trip back home πŸ˜‰

  18. Dear Fair family,
    Reading your post brought me tears of joy! Thank you for allowing us to experience a little of this very special time with your family. Some great memories made this week, and I know all of us “out here” will continue with prayers for continued good health for our little Miss Phoebe! God is good!!

  19. I rejoice with you! How wonderful it is to see all of you together having fun and to hear about your future plans. Thank you for sharing with me along the way, during the dark times and the light. Yea though we walk in the shadow of death we will not fear for He is with us. You are all, each on of you, a testimony to that timeless truth. I send all my love and hope to meet you all some day.

    Wendy Naylor

  20. So very happy for the wonderful time and the sweet memories that y’all have made this week. God is great and greatly to be praised! AMEN

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