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  • Hello and welcome to my blog! My name is Joanne and I’ve been blogging for many years under the name The Simple Wife (you can see all of my old posts under the archives or by clicking on any of the categories that interest you). I love receiving comments from you and try to respond to each one personally. I hope you’ll visit often!

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« Tangible Evidence That God Is Real | Main | No Rest for the Weary »


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You guys, your whole family, are amazing! Continuing to think of & pray for you. x

A fellow Siesta

You don't know me but I'm praying for you in St. Louis. We are going through a Bible Study at church right now by Priscilla Shirer and she says when you are praying and asking God for something, ask what you want and then say: "Do this, Lord, or something better. Your will be done." I'm praying for 100% recovery for Joanne. We had a young man in our church with a brain injury (from a car accident)and he is back to being able to do everything he could do before the car accident. They didn't think he would live but his mother/father and the church prayed and he just got married!


Random thought that you might want to look in to if you are so inclined. Ambien (aka zolpidem) has a shorter 1/2 life, which often results in early morning awakening (i.e. waking up in the middle of the night). You can up the dose, but that won't necessarily change the 1/2 life. There is a continual release form, meaning that even though the 1/2 life doesn't change, she would get it throughout the night. This might be a better choice- although in some ppl it has issues w/ daytime sleepiness, which presents other issues.

Praying for you and your family.


God is good, Toben! Look at the miracles all around! Continued prayers for that left side. And the diamond idea? I LOVE it! lol!
Love and blessings to you all.


Hum . . . what about pearls? They look good with everything! Praise to our King for J's progress!!!!! Now, praying for sleep.


Hi Toben and family
What an amazing progress with Joanne and God is defintley answering our prayers for u and Joanne and family I am praying here in Albuquerque Nm and will continue to pray for your prayer requests.
I am glad that you get the afternoon off to be with your girls they need that and you need to take that time. So thankful for all God is doing in your life and your familys
I know He is working on me thru this all situation and drawing me closer to Him and my faith and prayer life is better for it.
Thank you Toben for your updates and thank you for letting us know how to pray for you.
I am trying to get a friend of ,mine to drive down with me from Albuquerque to that praise and worship you are having for joanne
so I am praying for that.


Praise, praise, praise! I'll be praying and thanking GOD for each day and progress made and prayers answered!

Have a blessed evening, HUGS from Georgia!


Hi Heim family,
Sadly, I. have to miss the March 18th event :( I. Have a mandatory thing already sceduled but I wish I could come! Is there any way you could make a video of the night and let us all who cannot make it watch it even though we can't come? Thanks!!!!


Hi Toben

Rooting for you and Joanne and your family all the way!

A note about Ambien- it can make people say/do some really freaky things. Essentially, it allows your subconscious to act while that part of you that regulates your behavior, what you say etc is asleep. I was taking it briefly and I did quite a few things I later could not remember doing, including driving a car, and also sending emails etc to people, with no recollection of doing so (as well as saying some things I would not have ordinarily said.. kinda like drunk dialing!)

Just something to throw out there. It's possible that she will text you and not even know she did the next day.

Michelle from Australia

I LOVE Joanne's diamond logic. And of course she's totally and completely right about the diamond size :)

Kim Feth

Definitely going to continue praying for a total, complete recovery that will be so amazing that the medical folks involved with have to stand back and say, "Wow, that must be GOD!" Glad to see her sense of humor and jewelry fashion wasn't impacted by the stroke. Don't take 'No' as an answer from the insurance company. If they deny something, politely ask for an upper level appeal. 70% of all insurance claims/requests initially denied are overturned and paid for on appeal. You have to be the persistent widow.
Kim Feth
Apex, NC

Melana Cummings

A 5 karat diamond for a 2 karat sized scar....that sounds about right to me. Or perhaps a 2 karat with lots of gold. Either way...the bling should be about as big as the miracle that she is!!

Child of God

Praises to our God for this is his hand moving!


Sheila Parish

It sounds like she is doing much better. I am soooo glad. Still praying for her.


I am so happy to hear of Joanne's progress, continuing to pray daily for your wife, you and your girls.

Stephanie Riley

When I was 18 months old (I am now the same age as Joanne), I had "epiglotitis" which resulted in an emergency tracheotomy. It makes for an interesting story when I'm substitute teaching or playing 3 Truths and a Lie. The scar is insignificant and generally unnoticeable unless I point it out, but it never dawned on me to ask for diamonds to cover it up. I usually opted for turtlenecks or scarves....silly me, I should have totally gone for more!

On a more serious note, I can't tell you enough how this blog inspires me and how I'm constantly telling my Bible study gals or friends about all the progress - to God's glory - that Joanne is making.


Still praying and believing with you for Joanne's complete healing!!
I am praying Romans 4:20
"Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God,
but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God,
being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised."
Thank you Lord for Your Promise to heal Joanne completely!! We know you have the Power to restore her body, mind and spirit 100%!
We love you so much!
In Jesus' name I pray!!!
Trusting God in ALL the little details in her recovery too!!

Brad Fallon

Just trust in God and He will not fail you. Faith and prayers is what she needs right now. We all go through trials in life but God is our guide and He will make us strong.


I have been following your story since the beginning, I came across this from Beth Moores blog. Ithas been heavy on my heart since then to pray for Joannes complete healing.
Well, today at church a beautiful couple were on stage playing their instruments; the man playing a viola and the woman playing a flute. After playing on Christ the solid rock I stand, the man began telling his testimony. He told the congregation about how seventh months ago his wife had a massive stroke in which the doctors told him his wife would either not make it or be paralyzed for the rest of her life. She sure was never going to be able to play the flute again. Well this morning glory was brought to the Lord in big ways as she worshipped with all her heart and played the flute on stage and smiled and spoke gently to the church. She is healed!! And I was blown away by the joy that encompassed her from something that was painful. I am continuing to pray, I hope this brought encouragement...this occurance has brought SO much glory to our LORD!

Eveline from the Netherlands!

In my Heart I be there. Its just to far over the oceaan. But I pray an think about you All.



Praise God from whom all blessings flow!

"Those who sacrifice thank offerings honor me" Ps 50:23

He is worthy to be praised. Thank you for Lord for the healing you are doing in Joanne and for the restoration I believe you will do to the parts of her body you are wanting to 'be still'. Help us to be still and know you are God. A God who loves Joanne and and has a plan for her good. We praise you for her family, for their love, devotion, stamina and energy...for their joy that is complete only in you. Blessed be Your Name. Amen!

melissa irwin

I continue to be so amazed and so inspired here.

yanna westmoreland

Of course praying for complete healing! Toben get that girl a cubic zircona choker necklace asap!! lol I used to work with insurance, be sure everytime the company is contacted to get log who and when you talked to them. When I called I would chat a minute to the insurance person asking about them, where they were from, were they having a blessed day, were they a mom etc for a second get to know the person on the other end of the phone...then ask for a direct phone number in case we were disconnected, then try to get the same person each time. Just like at the hospital getting to know the caregivers personally makes a big difference in care. They are people too and I think even the insurance people want to be appreciated, I would not want their jobs but someone has to do it. Just a tip for the day, from a Siesta filling in the gap with prayer from Bryan, Tx. Hello Joanne!


Toben, it is so neat "watching" you with J and the girls. You are an awesome husband and daddy. Thank you for keeping us posted. I am loving Joanne's tweets. Praying for y'all!


Hi there,

I tuned into the blog a few weeks after Joanne's stroke, and now consider myself mildly addicted to watching God's powerful hand at work as you update on her progress. I am overjoyed at each step in the process and praise Him so for showing Himself in her healing. You and your family are an inspiration for me. Thank you for sharing so beautifully and openly about what it is to go through this season.

I'm not sure if you all have seen this video or heard of Jill Bolte Taylor, but she is a neuroscientist who suffered a massive stroke and now travels about describing what it was like to have the stroke and her incredible recovery. She's a tremendous speaker, and I thought (if you haven't seen it already) that her story may offer you and your family an even greater and more specific sense of hope.

God bless you all. Praying for all of you.

Jerri G...Catersavvy on Twitter

I've been wanting to post for several days now but haven't been able to from my Blackberry! First of all, so happy for the Trach being OUT!

Praise God for showing the doctors that HE is the mighty physician and has ALL the answers! I am standing in agreement with all who have been posting! Just another voice that knows Joanne can do anything, through Christ! She will be up and around in no time.

Toben, although it IS an interruption in therapy, I also had to have surgery weeks after I started to recover. I had just begun to walk and had to have several toes amputated but everything in God's time! It's only been a year and I am walking around the block for exercise.

I can't wait to meet Joanne and your amazing family! What an impressive list of cities, and countries that post on this site and I'm only a SE Aurora gal. Please let Joanne know that I am following her with glee, knowing that she WILL be fully healed!

If she ever wants to Tweet me...please, any time of the day or night! @catersavvy

God's blessings to all!


In January you would have bought her the Ekati Spirit Diamond as a ransom.

Joanne, don't stop at 5 carats, you go girl!!! You're worth every sparkle :)

Just think of the story you can tell when you walk/run into a room full of people and they notice that huge rock at your neck and you can smile like the Mona Lisa and then gently share your testimony. Joanne, you NEED that diamond, sorry Toben.

Brian E,

I always look forward to your updates and will continue to pray "big" for all of you.

In Him and through Him,



I love the way you interact with the staff on Joanne's behalf. I join you in the strong opinion that every patient needs one or more family members on hand for assistance and ADVOCACY! Praising and praying from the Seattle area.

Nicole Auld

Hello Toben/Joanne

I ran across the blog (about 2 wks ago) through another blog can't remember which one. I had a look around and let me just say Joanne your blog is amazing. We never met before, but let me say I feel like i have met you reading some of your post. Sister--I am praying for you, and I am so thankful you are doing better. Toben---know that God is able.
2 Cor 9:8

Judy Belc

Here's another suggestion about the Ambien - rather than giving it at 8, ask if they could give all her evening meds at 9, or between 9 and 10. Maybe that would be late enough to allow her to sleep till a more "normal" waking time!

I feel so blessed to be part of God's vast army of prayer warriors and will continue praying for you all as God brings you to my mind.

"Now unto Him Who is able to do EXCEEDING ABUNDANTLY above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus through out all ages, world without end. Amen." Eph. 4:20,21

Judy Belc


I am still here! Following the amazing progress and of course still praying - just haven't been commenting lately...anyway, I just finished my Memory Monday post and thought I would share it over here...because that is what I am supposed to do on Memory Monday!!!

Not only have I been praying for the specific requests (thanks for that! -love the direction) but also for J to dig out all those verses she has tucked away in there!


Praying for continued recovery for Joanne and for a restful nights sleep for all. I am blown away by the progress she is making....she will have plenty to write about soon.

Blessings to such an inspiring family. I love the way you care for each other and for your faith in the Lord:)


Always praying for you Joanne and every step of the way! Sooooo thankful for how far you've come! I hope today is a hard working day in therapy. I hope today is full of sweetness with Jesus. And I hope today is a wonderful day for your girls and for Toben. We are all praying you through sweetie!

Big hugs!

Lisa Ramsey

Joanne will be restored to 100% and then some. Surplus. No deficit. In the Name of Jesus.

She will be better than ever with potent and powerful ministry.

Praise the Lord...Jehovah Rapha...Willing Healer.

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