Caramels for Kate

As the news trickled in I couldn't believe it. A three year old with cancer. A parent's worst fear. 

And this wasn't happening to some family I didn't know - this was happening to my friend. My friend whom I have known since taking ballet class together as small children. Who braided my hair at summer camp. Who I supported as her mother's body gave into the weight of cancer. Who I saw overcome heartache and marry the love of her life. Who got pregnant and had babies side by side with me. Who I don't see often enough anymore. 

My friend. Her daughter close in age to my very own. I didn't know what to do. 

I sent a note, I made a donation... I "heart" her posts on Facebook. All of it felt so little for how I wanted to show up in this season. 

And then my sweet husband came up with an amazing idea. He asked if I would be willing to open up our seasonal caramel business as a fundraiser for the Waples. 

That was the easiest "yes" since accepting his proposal. 

When we announced the campaign, I didn't know what to expect. I didn't know if anyone would care (beyond our loyal caramel craving customers). 

Within an hour the post had been shared almost 20 times - we had two pending orders and people clamoring to get in on the deal. 

YOU can get in on it too! 

A little history about the family and what you will be supporting:
Where and when it all started: On Friday, April 13, 2018, 3 1/2-year-old Kate complained of stomach pains. She didn’t want to move and was reluctant to go to the bathroom, when she would walk she would hunch over in pain. Thinking it was bad gas or the start of a stomach bug, Kelly and Greg treated it at home as best they could and monitored her closely, praying it would pass quickly. On Monday, April 16, 2018 they thought Kate had turned a corner as she was back to eating and playing almost like her normal self, but parental intuition told them something was still off. On Tuesday, April 17, 2018 Kelly and Greg made an appointment with the doctor just to get assurance that everything was in fact fine. What Kelly and Greg thought would be a routine visit instead turned into the beginning of a whirlwind of activity and medical tests. By Wednesday they discovered that Kate had a 10cm cancerous tumor on her kidney and she was immediately admitted to the hospital. On Friday, April 20, 2018, Kate underwent surgery to remove her left kidney with the cantaloupe sized tumor, some lymph nodes, and her adrenal gland. Kate’s official diagnosis is a Stage III Wilms Tumor. 

Where they are now: Ten days after Kate’s surgery she started chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Kate already completed seven days of radiation to her entire belly because the tumor had ruptured before it was detected and removed. As of May 29, 2018 Kate has completed five of the 25 chemo treatments and is already dealing with the side effects of chemo including losing all her hair. If all goes as planned Kate will be finished with chemo on her birthday in October.

How you can help: Greg and Kelly are working with several doctors in different hospitals to come up with the best treatment plan to ensure Kate’s tumor doesn’t grow back. Unfortunately some of these doctors and treatments are not fully covered by insurance and the cost is taking it’s toll on them. Before Kate was diagnosed Kelly and Greg were saving money to buy a mini-van to fit their growing family. Baby #3 is due in October at the same time Kate is scheduled to finish chemo! Already the mini-van savings have been used and the bill pile is growing. We want to relieve some of those bills from Greg and Kelly’s shoulders and also hopefully help purchase a van before the arrival of baby #3! Donations will go towards medical bills, all other cancer related bills and a mini-van.

Please consider supporting this cause. I want to be exhausted and busy in August - you can make that happen!

Oh, and if anyone wants to volunteer to help wrap and package - we wouldn't turn you away! It is a Family Affair after all!


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