Izzy loves parties, but not pity parties.

If you want to feel sorry for someone, please don't feel sorry for her or our family.

This blog is for family and friends to keep up with Izzy and to document what a tough little girl she really is...

Don't worry - - she will kick cancers butt!

Monday, November 28, 2011

1 year ago...

It's been a while, so much has gone on in our lives. We had an amazing time in Florida and are so grateful for Make-A-Wish!

Last night marked the day we rushed Izzy to the hospital after finding a lump in her belly. It was technically Nov 29, 2010 (a date I will never forget), but it was the Sunday after Thanksgiving. I remember driving in the snow and having to put Primary Children's hospital in my navigation because I had only been there one other time and it was for my nephew. I still don't know how I got through it. I guess the saying "You never know how Strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have" rings true. I can remember trying to convince Izzy to drink the contrast so the ER doctors could do a CT scan. I remember dialing my parents number at around 2am and not being able to say a word because I was crying so hard, so Dustin had to take the phone and explain what was going on. I remember my parents getting to the hospital so fast and while I was trying to process everything my Mom as asking the doctors questions I never thought of. I remember being so afraid. I hate you cancer! My little girl kicked your butt, but you took so much from me and my family that I will forever do what I can so that one day we can conquer childhood cancer.

More to come...

Much Love,



Saturday, July 16, 2011

First ever CureSearch for childhood cancer walk in Salt Lake City,Utah!

Wow, it is amazing to see this walk turn out the way it did. I cannot thank those who got involved enough. We had 1,400 registered walkers (including virtual walkers), there was 40 teams, and we raised a whopping 72k and counting! Our team alone had 280 team members and raised over $6,400! Wow, when I first became passionate about CureSearch I was determined to get at least 100 walkers on Izzy's team, when we hit 100 I KNEW we could double it, but to almost triple my initial goal is outstanding! I could not have done it without each and everyone who signed up and participated. I found you will always be surprised at who will be there for you. I had people I hadn't seen in years register for the team or make a donation. It is amazing what you can accomplish is you just ask!

This picture isn't the best, but it's the only one I got of my little family. Dustin was in Cooperstown, NY umpiring baseball so unfortunately he wasn't there.

My regret is not getting a big team photo with all the Sassy Pants Supporters. I hate that I wasn't able to visit with each and everyone that came to be a part of this extremely important event. It was so hard juggle being part of the committee, the team captain, and with our cancer friends. I know some people don't understand why it means so much to me seeing as how Izzy is done with treatment, but cancer and specifically childhood cancer will forever be apart of me. How can you go through something so traumatic and not learn and want to give back and make a difference? I can understand that childhood cancer isn't going to be every one's cause (however, it is a brilliant one), but I do challenge everyone to have a cause and make a difference.

This is most of our CureSearch 2011 committee. These ladies are absolutely amazing, there is no doubt in my mind that they have some of the biggest hearts and will continue to make a difference in the world of childhood cancer. Our committee consisted of cancer Moms, each one of us has a child who has or had cancer. Some of these incredible women were jumping in on our planning conference calls, while in the hospital with their child. So, when I hear people say they don't have time for something I think of these ladies who on top of taking care of their child they helped plan an outstanding event that celebrated and honored children with cancer. And really who better to plan something of such nature than people who really know what it's all about? My part of the walk was coffee (props to Brew Monkey and Destiny and Bart Quarnberg), and some of the entertainment. I was touched by so many great people who came out to help with the event. It definitely wasn't easy asking people to come volunteer their time, and I had LOTS that turned me down. So those that were able to come just thrilled me. We had jugglers from BYU, clowns and balloon artists (thanks Tiny, Sammy, and Jeremy), face painters (you were awesome Sharon, Leah, and Macy!), Julie the awesome air brush tattoo artist, all the mascots with Utah Furries, Cinderella with Princess parties, Salt Lake Police Department, and Salt Lake Fire Department. I don't know if people realized that this event was planed with ZERO budget. We had to get every thing from the food to the entertainment donated or volunteered.

Opening ceremonies started with a balloon release for all of the children who lost the battle against childhood cancer. It was very hard to watch, and when I look at this pictures and see the pain in the faces of these loved ones, it breaks my heart and it makes me want to fight even harder to find a cure.

Then they asked all the cancer kids to come up and announce their name is the microphone. These are just a few of Izzy's cancer friends (Cami, Livi,and Ashlynn), while they were waiting to receive their medal for being a champion.

Izzy saying her name is the mic, I was pretty proud!

All the CHAMPIONS! Huge thanks to Kristina Partridge for all the great pictures!

So again, thank you for all your support! I know we wouldn't have been able to raise the amount of funds that we did without every one's help and it's not too late you can still donate for another 2 months.

At the end of the walk I was interviewed by Jessica Gail of KCPW, you can click on the link below to hear the interview.

Walk for Children’s Cancer Boosts Research Money Hit by Recession

Much Love,

Jennie aka Miss Sassy Pants Mom

Sunday, July 3, 2011

youtube video of Izzy's cancer journey

My sweet friend Destiny and I spend a LONG time putting all these pictures together and making a video of Izzy's fight with cancer. I hope you will take a few minutes to watch it.

Much Love,


Sunday, June 26, 2011

Camp Hobe

Both Tommy and Izzy were able to go to Camp Hobe this year and they LOVED it! Tommy actually went for 4 nights and when I went to pick him up after missing him so much I said "Did you miss me" and he said "Mom, why I was having fun". Somehow I knew he'd be just fine, although he was completely covered in dirt and I'm not sure how well he brushed his teeth or if he even did at all. I'm just happy he got to meet some friends and have a good time. He deserves it! Because he was up at camp the week before Miss Sassy Pants I only go the 1 picture of him below. I wish I wouldn've taken one of him when we picked him up.

Izzy went to Camp Hobe the next week for Monday and Tuesday during the day. She also had such a great time and was able to hang out with her cancer friends and meet new ones too. Now almost everyday she asks me if she either gets to go to camp tomorrow. I tell her she won't go for another year, but she doesn't seem to understand.

It was so neat to see all the volunteers at Camp Hobe! They have nurses, doctors, teens, life guards, cooks, and just about anything else you can think of that you need to run a camp. The hearts of these volunteers must be so big that they would sacrifice 1 to 2 weeks of their Summer to help out at Camp Hobe.

I had a great time hanging out with other cancer Moms while Miss Sassy Pants was at day camp. I have really met some amazing people through this cancer journey. One day we had craft hour and the next day we had a support group. During our support group we went around the room and told one good thing and one bad thing we've taken away from our child having cancer. To hear some of these ladies talk about the good and bad of childhood cancer is very touching.

There is only 12 days left until the CureSearch for childhood cancer walk on July 9th at Liberty Park. Izzy's Team "Miss Sassy Pants Kicks Cancer" has 171 members and we really want to hit 200. We also have raised $4,418.00 and I know we can get to $5000! Please walk with us and support childhood cancer research. Registration begins at 8am and opening ceremonies and the walk is at 9am. The walk is 2.1 miles around the park. Being on the committee it hasn't been easy to plan an event with zero budget, but we've been lucky to have people volunteer and donate. We will have clowns, balloon artists, face painters, princesses, music, food, and more! To register and walk with us click on the link below. It's only $10 for adults and FREE for kids under 16. Make sure to register your kids so we have an accurate count for food and entertainment. I hope to see you all there!

Join Izzy's team "Miss Sassy Pants Kicks Cancer"

Much Love,

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Wish Granted!!

If that isn't a happy face I don't know what is. Izzy's wish to go to Disney World was granted and we are all so excited. I haven't been able to update Izzy's blog as often as I would like, but I can assure you she is doing well. Miss Sassy Pants is going to Summer school at Aunt Sand's because she basically missed her first year of preschool, plus we just love Aunt Sand's.

On Mr T's birthday we were able to go to the Bee's game with HopeKids. We sat in a suite and had such a great time. I was able to meet some wonderful families all of which had a child who had/has cancer. It is amazing to be able to talk to these families and see how much they have gone through. Check out these cute pics of the kids getting their faces painted. I was able to get the face painters to come to the CureSearch walk on July 9th, so I'm super excited for that.

And my most favorite picture of all...

That's all for now, but please don't give up on me I'll be back to post more. I'm off to send messages to my AMAZING CureSearch team. I'll leave you with a link to register and join us for the walk on July 9th at Liberty Park. This event is so important to me and with the help of others we can REACH THE DAY when every child with cancer is guaranteed a cure!!


Much Love,


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

CT scan, chest x-ray, and ultra sound clear!!

This post is long over due, I have wanted to sit down and blog but never seem to have the time. I'm so excited to let everyone know that Miss Sassy Pants tests all came back clear. Last Monday she went in for a CT scan, chest x-ray, and an ultra sound. It was so hard to keep her still for all of these procedures, luckily my Mom came to help me, sometimes it takes 2 people to keep Izzy's entertained and under control. The doctor look a long time to come into the room to discuss the results, which really had me on edge. Then Izzy's nurse came in and told us the doctor was running behind, but didn't want us to worry about the tests because they all looked good.

Here she is pretending to remove the picc line from one of her dolls. This helped her to understand how it works when they take her line out.

Then, here is her nurse removing the line that went straight to Miss Sassy Pants heart to give her chemo, anti biotics, and anti nausea medication for the last 4 months.

What's next you ask? Well we get a little break from having to go to PCMC on a weekly basis and don't have to go back until July. Then for the next 36 months Izzy will go in for scans, xrays, and ultra sounds to make sure the cancer doesn't come back.

I don't know if I will ever fully believe that Izzy is safe from cancer. It may sound dumb to some of you, but this experience has rocked my world so much that I feel like I will always worry that it will come back. Don't get me wrong, I'm well aware that the relapse for Wilms tumor is low I just can't help but think that we will forever be affected by this terrible disease.

If there is anything I can hope it is that people stop being so naive about childhood cancer. It's real and it really sucks! I never thought a child of mine would have cancer, in fact I don't know that I knew anyone under the age of 18 who had cancer. Cancer stole many things away from Izzy and our family during her treatment and it will forever be a part of her life, she has scars all over her body to prove it. I know her hair will grow back and she may forget a lot about this whole experience, but me I don't know that I will ever be the same person. I do know I will forever be an advocate for childhood cancer research though. And I hope that those of you who still follow Miss Sassy Pants blog will be there with me. Izzy isn't the only child I know now that has had to battle this ugly disease, you can look at the side bar and find blogs of Izzy's friends who are still fighting and it's not an easy fight.

For those of you who are on facebook you may be tired of my status updates about the CureSearch walk on July 9th, but I am bound and determined to bring awareness about childhood cancer and how important it is. The walk is a 5k (3 mile) or 1 mile walk around Liberty Park. You can bring wagons and stroller to the walk and kids can register for free. Adults are only $10. This walk isn't just about walking, it's about supporting a cause to help reach a day when there is a cure for childhood cancer. It's a day to celebrate and honor children from Utah who have been affected by children's cancer. The event will have prizes, music, food, and fun activities for the whole family. My dream is to one day have as many participants and support as I saw at the Susan G Komen walk/run for breat cancer las Saturday. If you would like to register for Izzy's team please click on the link below and select the Register button at the top of the page. If you can't attend the event or you live too far away you can be a virtual walker. Please help me make this event into something to honor Izzy and other children who have battled cancer. They deserve it!


Much Love,


Monday, April 25, 2011

No More Chemo Party at Classic Skating!

Izzy is done with her chemotherapy and we want to celebrate with everyone. Izzy had 4 1/2 long months of mostly weekly chemo that would wipe her out and make her loose her appetite. There were times when all she ate was Trix, S'more granola bars, Lucky Charms, or Ramen Noodles. Oh, and you can't forget the M & M's and Hershey bars compliments of Pa. So here's to NO MORE CHEMO and hopefully getting her to eat a little better....

Time Saturday, May 7 · 5:00pm - 8:00pm

Location Classic skating
9151 S. 255 W
Sandy, UT

Please come out and have some fun with us at Classic Skating in Sandy. We will have a room reserved where kids can play Wii, get a picture with a real life 4 year old cancer survivor, and even an autograph picture from Miss Sassy Pants herself. Izzy will be signing pictures for $2 with the proceeds going to her fundraiser for CureSearch walk on July 9th at Liberty Park. You can also purchase a pink silicone wristband for $2 that has Miss Sassy Pants/Izzy Abernethy on it.

You can also register at the celebration to join Team Sassy Pants Kicks Cancer for the CureSearch walk on July 9th. We are trying to hit 100 team members.

We will be providing the pizza, drinks, and dessert!!

If you would like to go skating the price for a wristband for the skating rink is $7, plus $1 for skates, or $3 for scooters or blades. If you would like you can bring your own skates, scooters, big wheels, or small bikes with training wheels from home. Please feel free to do any other activities at Classic that you would like. Below I've included a link to the website.


No gifts please! Please RSVP on the facebook event or as a comment on the blog so we know how many people to plan on.

Much Love,


Saturday, April 16, 2011

No More Chemo!!!

I'm a little behind with updating the blog about Miss Sassy Pants, but I am excited to announce that Izzy had her last scheduled chemo appointment on Monday. We go back in on May 2 for scans and xrays and if everything looks great then they will remove her picc line. Then after that we will continue with scans and xrays every few months for a few years.

Izzy and I waiting in her room to meet with her doctor

Dr. Sato one of Izzy's incredible Oncologists. She has been so good to us. I can't tell you how many times we talked to her on her cell phone, she has been there for us with whatever questions small or large we've had. Plus, you trying getting Izzy to sit still while you listen to her heart, not an easy task.

We sat in the infusion room and Izzy got her last round of chemo. Once she was finished all the staff at the clinic came out to sing a song and congratulate Izzy with being finished with therapy. They gave her this basket of gifts and made the darling sign. I was crying my eyes out with tear of joy and relief. My heart was so full of love for these nurses and staff for making her feel so special.

The thing that really made our last visit so awesome was being able to meet Jessica and her parents. They were in clinic ironically enough and we were finally able to offically meet and tell our stories to each other. The Dads were tryig to get the girlies to lift up their shirts to take a picture of their scars, but they weren't having it. Izzy and Jessica are only 3 months apart and they share the fact they both had a Wilms Tumor and had their right kidneys removed.

As we walked out the door Izzy was able to ring the bell....one thing we've been waiting for since she was first diagnosed.

Much Love,


Thursday, April 7, 2011

Dinner, hair show, and silent auction in honor of Miss Sassy Pants

Anyone and everyone is invited to come out to a charity event put on by the owners/staff from both Life Aveda Salon and Spa and Rumrz Grill. They have gone to a lot of trouble to put together this great event to benefit Izzy. My little sister Jessi is one of the managers at Life Aveda and I know she's very excited about it as, am I. Below are more details if you are interested in attending.

Date/Time: Wednesday April 13, 2011 dinner from 5pm-7pm and hair show/silent auction to follow
Where: Rumrz Grill at the District in South Jordan- 11565 S. Main District Drive

The dinner prices are $20 for adults and you have a choice between the bacon wrapped steak or the pork chops and $15 for kids for chicken fingers. You have to purchase the dinner tickets before in advance and they are selling out so if you are interested please be sure to contact Life Aveda Salon and Spa at 801.727.2600. However, if you can't make it out to the dinner please come to watch the hair show and see the incredible silent auction items and raffle drawings. I have heard of a few of the items that will be there and they are amazing!

**If you would like to donate items to the raffle or auction please get in touch with Cindy at Life Aveda 801.727.2600**

Much Love,


Monday, April 4, 2011


Wow Sassy Pants supporters, Make-A-Wish was awesome. Magical is the word that best describes Izzy's first visit to declare her wish. I can't say enough about this amazing organization.

Here she is standing in front of the welcome Izzy poster

When we got there our Wish Granters introduced themselves and took us on a tour of the Make-A-Wish building. It was super neat. Liz and Derek are both volunteers for Make-A-Wish. You've probably drove past the Make-A-Wish building, it's located right near the RC Willey in Murray. They took us outside to the wishing pond and gave us each a wishing token. Both Tommy and Izzy threw there's in to make a wish, but Dustin and I held on to ours. Everything is going so well right now that I want to hold on to that token for when I really need it.

I don't know if you can see very well, but at the bottom of this pond are lots of tokens from sick little kids asking for a magical wish. This I imagine is suppose to get the children thinking about wishing.

I obviously need a new camera, but if you can tell there are stars at the top of the ceiling. Those stars represent each child who has had their wish granted.

They also have a big board filled with pictures of children who have had their wish granted and what their wish was. I'd have to say that the majority of the wishes were Disney, or Hawaii. Then there were some that were more unique like the boy who wanted to meet "he who should not be named" from Harry Potter or the little boy who wanted a pirate ship playhouse. Yes, both of their wishes were granted. We got to see our little friend Connor who recently had his wish granted for a Home Theater. His picture is on the second row very right.

We then went upstairs to play a game called "The Wishing Game", pretty fitting right? It was really fun, and Izzy actually has this game at home although she hasn't played it yet. She got it with her tree from The Festival of Trees. Our neighbor The McPhee's bought if for her and the theme was "Make-A-Wish". This game again helped to get Izzy's mind thinking about what she would wish for. The granters before hand told us that this is the one of the only times you really want to force your child to be selfish and think of themselves and what they would truly want as a wish.

I enjoyed hearing Tommy's wishes and Dustin's too, but most of all it was funny to hear what Izzy was wishing for. Then we got really serious and they started asking Izzy what she really wanted to wish for. They ask for 3 wishes in case they aren't able to grant the first or second one. This is what Izzy wished for in her words..."Disney World, a cruise with no parents (Tommy chimed in and said that's the Nickelodeon cruise) or Taylor Swift concert, and a merry-go-round in her backyard with only pink horses, because I hate purple." Yes, she tried to double up her second wish. Silly girl. Her wish granters wrote them down and put them in a metal capsule thing. Then they asked Izzy if she remembered her key to the wishing tower. She got all anxious because her Dad teased her and said we forgot it.

Dustin helping her get the key in so she could open the door to the wishing tower.

We walked into this really amazing room with lights and a big cone shaped statue of some sort. The floor was like frosted glass.

During the wishing game we had all made a wish for Izzy. Once we were in the room we all told her what we wished for. Then lights started to go on and off and she was told she had to follow the bright light on the floor. It lead her to this...where she dropped her capsule in and then held the small cone shaped object that as she continue to follow the lights lead her back to the big cone in the ground.

It turns out that was the top of the wishing wizards hat. She put it on top of the hat and

Then the wishing tower went dark

And then got really bright, signifying that the wizard had got her wish.

Then we went downstairs to the party room and her wish granters gave Izzy a gift bad with a pink dog, some red vines, a book, a wand, a cute purse, and they gave Tommy a book too.

We had cookies and ice cream and then I filled out paper work with Liz. At this point they will talk to her doctor to see when he will give her clearance to go and start looking into granting Izzy's wish. As soon as we hear we will definitely let you all know!

The visit was so incredible and magical, I'm so thankful Izzy was able to go and that these amazing volunteers were so sweet with her and Tommy.

Much Love,


To learn more about volunteering for Make-A-Wish click on the link below, they have a super awesome cook book you can purchase at the building and a big percentage if not all goes back into Make-A-Wish. You can also donate your sky miles, time, or do a fundraiser.

Ways to help Make-A-Wish

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Time flies when Izzy doesn't have chemo

I have been meaning to give an update on Miss Sassy Pants, but to be honest we have been enjoying the time off from chemo.

Pa and Chelle flew Dustin and Tommy to Arizona for Spring Training over the weekend and Miss Sassy Pants and I had a girls weekend. Unfortunately on Friday when the home health nurse came to draw labs and change the dressing on Izzy's picc line they found that her ANC was very low. It hasn't been this low since we left the hospital on Christmas Eve. I had to do some rearranging of my schedule because when her counts are so low they like you to keep her away from kids and crowds. So on Monday morning Izzy and I went to clinic thinking that is was a high possibility that we would have to put off the chemo for another week due to a dramatic drop in Izzy's ANC. However, we lucked out and her counts were back up. It's kinda strange to say that we were excited to get chemo done, but it was more that we were excited to be a little closer to finishing up with the treatment.

Here she is enjoying some cereal while we waited for chemo. Miss Sassy Pants appointment was at 9:30 and we didn't leave the clinic until 1:30 so it made for a LONG day. Not more than a couple minutes into driving home I turned to check on Izzy and she was fast asleep. She was exhausted!

I have been so happy to meet some Moms of cancer patients these past couple weeks. Thank you for reaching out to me! It's true that sometimes the only one who can really understand how you’re feeling is another cancer Mom. I've learned a lot from Binley's Mom Kristin who wrote this amazing post on Brinley's blog about the things she has learned. I only wish I could write and express my feeling as well as she does. Check it out, but be sure to have your tissue handy. I have read the post over 50 times and I can't get through it without tears in my eyes and my heart not pounding.

We signed up a team in Izzy's honor for the CureSearch walk on July 9th. Curesearch benefits funding for Children's Oncology Group research. They hope to "Help reach the Day when every child with cancer can be guaranteed a cure." Can you even imagine? If you'd like to join the Miss Sassy Pants kicks cancer team click on the link below. If you can't make it to the event you can always be a virtual walker or make a donation.


Oh yeah, and some very exciting news is that Miss Sassy Pants was nominated for Make-A-Wish!! Our little family gets to go meet with her wish granters on Monday March 28th. I have heard some amazing things about Make-A-Wish and we are very happy to get to be apart of such a truly incredible organization.

Much Love,


Thursday, March 10, 2011

Hollywood Connections with HopeKids

This past Saturday we got to go to Hollywood Connections with HopeKids, the HopeKids and their immediate family had it all to ourselves from 9:00am to 10:30am, then your family and friends were able to come do all the fun stuff at a huge discount price and half of it went back to the HopeKids organization.

Miss Sassy Pants has been really into wearing scarfs, but most of the time she likes them draped over her head and she pretends it's her hair. Sometimes I can convince her to let me tie them, but it just depends on her mood. She liked this horse the best she told me because it had jewels on it.

They loved going on the bumper cars, Sassy Izzy was pretty good at maneuvering I was impressed. She got to where she would purposely make it so she would go around in circles. It was pretty funny.

Here's the Hoggan's minus Kimmie (she was running a race in St George).

And here is some of the Burnside's.

All the little kids tried to roller skate, but it was kind of hard for them. Tommy was much better his second time around. Here's Lyssie, I wish I would have got more pictures of all the kids roller skating because it was so cute.

My friends Destiny and Melanie brought their families, it was so nice to see them.

I always wish I would have taken more pictures when I get home and look at my camera. We had lots of family and friends who were able to come spend time and enjoy the fun things at Hollywood Connection. Thanks HopeKids!