Monday, June 17, 2013


Dear Readers,

This will probably be the most random blog post I've ever written. I apologize ahead of time for that. My thoughts are pretty random right now, but I do want to write something nonetheless.

First of all - we're home. We spent 9 days in Arizona with our families there, and we are trying to get back to "normal" today. I'm not sure what that normal will look like, but we're figuring that out. One day at a time.

Just a few days after losing my dad, Sam's dad went into the hospital...we've known for two months now that things were not looking good. He was diagnosed with liver cancer two months ago and given about that much time to live. He and his wife spent the week before last with us - they came from Arizona to see our family and enjoy a week together before he went home to be put under hospice care. Our children didn't know anything about his diagnosis...he wanted it that way so that they could enjoy a happy week with him.

grandpa rice, sam, and hayden 

When the call came about my father, I felt like the rug had been pulled out from under me. We were already getting ready to say goodbye to Sam's dad for the last time- I was totally unprepared for my father's death.

I wish I'd had time to say goodbye.

So now we are facing losing Sam's dad...he was discharged from the hospital two days ago and is not doing well. Hospice is managing his pain, and we are all praying this is as easy as possible for him.

My kids are facing losing their grandpa, and they are still processing losing their papa. Sam and I are so thankful for the many, many emails, texts, phone calls, and prayers sent our way. We are so grateful for the network of friendship that has held us up.

lily and kenz, show low, arizona

In the midst of heartache God has done an amazing miracle for our family- a bright spot in the middle of our loss.

The day my father passed away I received a phone call from Naomi - Baby K's birth mom had decided to relinquish her rights. The next day in court his case plan was changed to adoption. As if that wasn't enough of a MIRACLE, the bio dad called the case worker after court. Unexpectedly- we have not heard from him since January - he told DHS that Jason and Naomi were the perfect family for Baby K and he wanted to relinquish his rights as well.

I cannot tell you what a miracle this is. I cannot express to you what joy that news brought us in the midst of grief unspeakable.


So today we are moving forward. Today I'm hugging my children harder, trying to tell the people I love how very much I love them, today I am trying to live more intentionally than ever. Today I am purposing not to let one moment of this one wild and precious life pass me by.

We had a guest preacher last night at church... he told this illustration, and it just really hit me what a gift we are given every day. I'm going to share it here, in hopes that you'll be impacted like I was.

Imagine there is a bank account that credits your account each morning with $86,400. It carries over no balance from day to day.

Every evening the bank deletes whatever part of the balance you failed to use during the day. What would you do? Draw out every cent, of course?

Each of us has such a bank. It's name is TIME.

Every morning, it credits you with 86,400 seconds.

Every night it writes off as lost, whatever of this you have failed to invest to a good purpose.

It carries over no balance. It allows no over draft. Each day it opens a new account for you. Each night it burns the remains of the day.

If you fail to use the day's deposits, the loss is yours. There is no drawing against "tomorrow."

You must live in the present on today's deposits. Invest it so as to get from it the utmost in health, happiness and success!

The clock is running!! Make the most of today.

To realize the value of ONE YEAR, ask a student who failed a grade.

To realize the value of ONE MONTH, ask a mother who has given birth to a premature baby.

To realize the value of ONE WEEK, ask the editor of a weekly newspaper.

To realize the value of ONE HOUR, ask the lovers who are waiting to meet.

To realize the value of ONE MINUTE, ask a person who just missed a train.

To realize the value of ONE SECOND, ask someone who just avoided an accident.

To realize the value of ONE MILLISECOND, ask the person who won a silver medal at the Olympics.

Treasure every moment that you have! And treasure it more because you shared it with someone special, special enough to spend your time with. And remember time waits for no one.

Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That's why its called the present.

my dad with my nieces

I wish I had one more moment with my dad.

I wish I had just a few minutes to hug him and tell him how very much I loved him. Yesterday on Father's Day, I wished I could pick up the phone and hear his familiar voice answer and say, "Hello, Pa-tree-sha."

I wish I had just one more minute to say goodbye.

So I'm asking Lily's readers to treasure this time that you have. Don't take one blessed moment for granted - seize the day.

I'm also asking you to consider the frailty of ask yourself some hard questions about what we all face once this life is over.

Because this life is the blink of an eye, you know? We only get one shot, and then it's over. And not one of us knows when that moment will be. We might be like my husband's father - knowing that the end is near and having the time to say goodbye. Or we might be like my father- here one moment and in eternity in the next.

I had a conversation with my dad before the election that I'll never forget. It was a conversation that gives me hope of seeing my beloved dad again one day. We were talking about politics and what the results of the election would be. "You know, Patti," my dad said, "The older I get, the more I realize...nothing in this life really matters - not even politics or who is going to be elected - the ONLY thing that matters is where we're going to spend eternity."  

So I'm asking you to consider today...where will you spend eternity ? Because the end of this life isn't the end- it's just the beginning. One day each one of us will face death... each one of us will meet God face to face. Are you ready to meet Him ? I am. Not because of who I am - every one of us is flawed, human, sinful.  There is none righteous, no not one. Romans 3:10  

The Bible says there is a price for that sin.. and there is a way to avoid paying that price.
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ. Romans 6:23

I'm ready - because of the shed blood of Jesus Christ, because I'm trusting in God's forgiveness based on what Jesus did for me on the cross. I'm not trusting in my own works, my own "goodness". My faith is not in what I can do for God, but what God did for me.
But God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. Romans 5:8

Heaven is a perfect place- the Bible says there is no weeping there, no sin, no death, no grief. It's a place of perfection, and the only way the imperfect can be there- you and me - is through faith in a perfect Savior. I know I can go there, not because of what church I go to, or because I live perfectly, not because of a religion, but because of my faith in Jesus...

If you confess with your mouth that Jesus Christ is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is be confessing with your mouth, that you are saved. Romans 10: 9-10

It's that simple. You can know today where you will spend eternity, just by asking God for forgiveness and trusting in Jesus.

Life is but a's here one moment and gone the next. We're all just a heartbeat away from stepping into eternity. I know where I'm going. Do you ?

Lots of love,



Leah said...

Patti, This is one of the most beautiful posts ever!! Lots of hugs and prayers are with all of you in this time. I'm amazed at the miracles in baby K's life and know that God has quite a destiny for him! I'm so sad that my sister Kelly & family are so far from me but the first thing I asked Heather was how close to you would they be, somehow that makes me feel better! If you could feel a virtual hug, here it is!!! ((((()))))))

Love, Leah Henry

Crystal Kupper said...

Preach it, Patti! Much love to you and your family right now.

sunnylattegma said...

I have been praying for you and will continue. I also have lost my dad. And my mom. Memories are such a gift now.

I have heard that story of time from that same preacher. He is a favorite of mine.

Much love and many prayers to cover you.

Megan Reinbold said...

Love and prayers for you and your family.
I lost my sweet Mother in November of last year and I, too, wish I could spend one more millisecond telling her I love her.

lovemy3 said...

I'm so sorry for the loss you are doing through and the one that looms ahead. you are in my thoughts and prayers! So excited about your good news with Koa!!! So happy for Naomi and Jason and your entire family!

Naomi said...

Hugs to you Patti! And beautiful post!

Danielle said...


So very true and I will take this to heart today. {{hugs}} Praying for you all.

Gonna go spend some time with my kids now!


Stef said...

oh my goodness, Patti, I sobbed while reading this. So many good reminders in here and PRAISE GOD for the outcome of your Grandson!! I've got chills right now, seriously. God is amazing.

Katrina said...

I jumped up to scream Hallelujah with crocodile tears streaming down my face :) Please tell them congratulations for me.

I was so sorry to hear about the lose of your father but am very excited to hear that you got a miracle after it.

I have to keep reminding myself about where it is I am going and being happy here no matter what the trials are. One day I will see Natasha again. It just way not be until eternity.

Tammie said...

Patti, so sorry for your families loss and the pain you are all going through, I am so happy for you family- Jason and Naiomi to finally getting the Miracle they deserve, Koa deserves nothing different. That is a miracle that we all(even though we do not know you all peersonally) have been waiting for and it is finally coming true. I have one favor to ask if you would all pray for a miracle for my daughter this week who is going through IVF snd we also need a miracle to happen. Thanks so much and I will be keeping you all in my thoughts.

April Narretto said...

God works in such amazing ways. congratulations to N and K, a moment I know they have been waiting for a long time.
Patti this is such a beautiful post during your heartache and pain. you and family will remain in my prayers during this difficult time.

Stefany DeLorme said...

Beautifully said. God Bless all of you.

Wendy Talley, Portsmouth, VA said...

Hugs and prayers to you and your family.

Maria said...

Patti~I am so sorry to hear about your Dad & Dad In Law. It is so very hard. My Dad, too, died unexpectedly when we were kids. It was a shock & unbearable at the time. Be grateful that your Dad was here to see you raise your beautiful family.
The news about Koa brought me so much happiness knowing that he will remain with your family. He's a lucky little boy, as are my precious nephews~both adopted. I can't imagine life without them.
Take care of yourself, Patti.
Much love,

Wendy Talley, Portsmouth, VA said...

Hugs and prayers to you and your family. Thank you for sharing with us the words of encouragement and hope in Jesus Christ.

Leah said...

well written my friend

EN said...

Oh Patti - I couldn't sleep so I got up and found this blog post and it was just what I needed to read. I am so sorry for your loss and my heart aches for what your husband is going through. You know I am over the moon over beautiful baby K! But the underlying message of it all was exactly what my heart needed to absorb. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Judee Albert said...

I am so sorry for your losses. I will praying for your family. Everything you said I am taking to heart. These are things I needed to hear particularly right now. Thank you for allowing our heavenly Father to use you as a messenger.

For a long time I have been requesting prayers among my network for Baby K and that situation. This glorious news brought me to tears. I am so happy for all of you.

MamaV said...

Thank you! I have been praying for you daily!

eliz said...

You are so right Patti. Our M.A. is dying right now. One day healthy- next day it's not good.
And baby K is going to stay! I am weeping with JOY! Praise God!!

Virginia (Jenny) said...

I'm soooo sad right now....

Last time I talked to Dennis at church I didn't know how sick he was. I didn't know he was sick at all! He smiled really, really big at me and talked to me about my kids.

When you were first pregnant with your 11th, he came up to me and said, "did you know I'm getting another granchild? Patti is pregnant with her 11th!" I was so happy. He's always come up to me and told me every time you were pregnant.

I didn't know he was sick and that the last time I shook his hand I wouldn't see him again....He's always encouraged me, along with Linda, about my children, and not let anyone put me down for having a large family.


Beth said...

How beautiful. Thank you for sharing this.

Marietta said...

The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.
My mom died very unexpectedly and that is so hard! No opportunities to say good bye. I tell myself often that she missed nothing - mom is in glory.
The coming months will be hard, but the pain will lessen and the memories become more precious.
A baby getting parents that love the Lord is such a wonderful gift to the baby!

cara said...

Oh Patti!!!! Baby K!!!! I am praising God for this. God's Timing is always perfect. We were praying along with so many others. This is such amazing news!!!! :) :) :)

Oh how my heart aches for you, Sam, and your precious kids. I cannot imagine the sudden loss of a dad like this. And I also cannot imagine how hard it is to know you are saying good-bye. And all around the same time. I am so sorry! Praying for you all.

Love you! xoxoxo

teal915 said...

So sorry for your loss. Great news on your grandson. I'm glad you had that good news to rejoice over during such a difficult time.

Valerie Heldenbrand said...

I am so very sorry for the loss of your dad. I lost my mom 3 years ago so I know the heartbreak. I will be praying for your family as they process all of this and deal with your fil's illness. I am praising that baby K will legally belong to your family. God knew he was to be a part of it from the start.

Paul Huizinga said...


Your words bring our attention to the tenuousness of life in a very practical yet eloquent way. As I read your words I could not help being reminded of Deut. 30:19-20. I pray that our Father heaven will bless you in your grief. Be blessed and continue to let those around you serve the Lord as a support to you in those dreary times of grief that lay ahead and which miraculously grows our faith.


Kathy McElhaney said...

I saw on IG that grandpa Rice passed away. I am so sorry for your family's double loss. I don't even know what to say at times like this. Praying for your entire family.

Janine Claire Robinson said...

Precious Patti ... I have missed out on reading over here for the last few months. Coming here today to read your post makes me wish that I lived in the same Country and could just pop over ... make you a cup of tea and give you the biggest hug ever. Thank you for these heart felt words of wisdom. May your heart know incredible comfort at this time. Sending you so much love. Janine