CS Lewis once said that "grief is like the sky, it covers everything." In recent weeks, our family has found that this is so very true. It seems that there is no right or wrong way to travel this path of grief. I have created this blog in hopes that some day we will be able to look back on our journey and see written proof that our great God never leaves us. God is good all the time.

Celebrating Laynee

You might want to scroll to the bottom of this page and pause the music before playing this video.

Thursday, January 28, 2010


My heart aches for my baby tonight.  What would she be like now, just before her third birthday?  How much would she have grown?  Would she know how to tell everyone that it's her birthday?  Would she ask for her own heehee?  Would she be talking in sentences or using many more signs?  Would we have grown her hair long for the winter, with pigtails and ribbons and bows?  (Okay probably not on that one, she really had no tolerance for froofroo hair things)  She was so good at pottying on the big girl potty, would she be wearing big girl pants with Dora on them?  She would be starting school in Miss Ennis's class, would she be really proud of that fact? 

Does she know?  Does she know in heaven that it's her birthday? Does she know in heaven how much we miss her? So very many things that I miss.  So many things that I didn't get to do. 

Her room is so full of Laynee, yet so empty.  Things, that's all that is there.  Precious things, because they were touched by Laynee, worn by Laynee, loved by Laynee, yet nothing more than things.  The smell of her room is becoming stale, losing the sweet Laynee scent, a painful reminder that time keeps going on without her.  My arms, they are empty too.  Empty because my baby has been ripped from them in a seemingly merciless way. 

I really don't know how to have her birthday.  I DON"T KNOW HOW TO DO THIS!!!!!  How do I give my children a healthy way to remember their sister's birthday, but not dwell on death.  The tears are there in their eyes, the sadness is etched onto their faces, the grief is there in the silence, in the unspoken words.  I have a plan of purchasing a cake for her.  I will also get a birthday balloon for her, attach a letter of love for her, and together we will set the balloon free.  The balloon will rise to the heavens and dance away in the wind.  We will never really know where the balloon goes, just as we will never really know, this side of heaven, where our Laynee is. Heaven is a mystery that God did not intend for us to solve.  He gave us just enough truth about heaven to make us long for it but not enough that we can ever really comprehend what or where it is. 

Yesterday a friend unknowingly gave me an idea for Laynee's birthday.  She stopped into my shop with a gift that told me that she has not forgotten Laynee's birthday.  She remembers.  With the gift was a card.  Written in the card were several beautiful memories of Laynee.  Little things that she remembered about her, those things that made Laynee so dear.  Laynee touched so many lives.  She touched the lives of those she knew and those whom she did not know.  She touched lives in her life and in her death.  She left behind a legacy of love and joy.  What greater gift could we give to her than to tell of how she touched so many.  Please share, either by commenting on the blog, or privately through my email kkholmes1@verizon.net how she touched your life. We have a beautiful box with a satin ribbon that was given to us by the hospital.  When we received the box, it had in it a clipping of her hair, her footprints, her handprints and the hospital band from the night she died.  I have added a few of our most cherished items.  I would love to add a list of all the people and the ways that she touched them in her short time here.  Her life was far too short in my opion, but it was not without a beautiful purpose.  Though everything about her death seems terribly wrong, I know that it is not.  It is exactly right because God is good and God does not make mistakes.

Thank you to anyone who takes part in this.


  1. She is so precious, Karol. The pictures speak thousands of words. How blessed you were to be her mommy. Missing her with you. Happy birthday sweet girl.

  2. Happy Birthday Laynee!! We moved our entertainment center and found a bright green plastic frog shoved under it. Stoner said it came from Laynee.Another little story to share- In my kitchen corner we have a pile of dirt from sweeping the floor daily, this little pile was here favorite. She would find cheerio treasures.Jeff called her his little "dirt bag". She would give him the cutest cheesy grin. Missing Her. The Sinn's

  3. Karol,
    Happy Birthday Prettiest! There are so so many memories I could share about Jalayne. I just remember her being so cheerful and fun all the time! I remember her coming in our house and never wanting to leave. I remember walking her home sometimes cause she wanted to stay just a bit longer. I remember her smile that she would always wear. So so many memories from precious Laynee girl. We miss her so much.

  4. Aunt Karol,
    Garrett and I have many memories from Princess Layne. I cant even narrow it down to one specific memory, there were so many. Jalayne would make EVERYONE'S day. Just seeing her running across your yard would put a smile on my face. Just seeing her boss anyone around would make me happy. She was the princess and she knew it! I loved washing her feet every time she tracked through the mud by the heehees. I loved seeing her trying to pet either Tipper or the kitty. She really wasnt ever too gentle to them! I miss her smiling face every day.
    Garrett remembers her always slapping his face when he would get close to say "Hi Laynee!" She never wanted Garrett that close to her face. But like I said, she was the princess...she gets what she wants!
    We miss her so much!!!
    Danielle and Garrett

  5. Happy Birthday, Laynee Girl,
    One your third birthday, I see you as the Laynee with the wind blown hair, food smudges on your shirt and face, that beautiful smile that was so big your eyes went squinty! So many
    precious memories. Just the little things- running thru the yard with you little legs going as fast as they can - throwing balls - running across my street, holding tightly to my fingers to see the hee-hees! The other day
    when it was gloomy and rainy outside, Mark made
    the comment that we sure do miss our Beautiful
    ray of sunshine, Laynee Girl. I'm sure you are
    letting everyone in heaven know that your are having a birthday, and that you are now a big girl, 3 years old. As I am typing this blog, I am listening to "God is Good" and he sure is.
    We thank him for the memories we have of our
    Laynee Girl--We Miss You and Love You so much!
    With love,

  6. Happy Birthday Miss Laynee!

    The memory that I hold dear is my very last memory of you, Laynee. Brent and I had decided to walk up to Pinky's for some icecream and who comes bobbling in but some of the Holmes/Rollins family. You would sit on the table and want to eat everyone's icecream but your own. You would "shlop" around in the half melted icecream thinking you were IT! What a mess you made, but no one cared, you were Laynee after all. I remember A. Fern asking me to babysit you on a Thursday when she had plans...I was so excited!! That thursday was supposed to be towards the end of September. It never came. I wish so bad it had! Loving you and missing you Laynee Grace.

  7. I didn't spend alot of time with Layne but I did have the oportunty to watch her once a week while Karol went to work and during those times she taught me a few things. She taught me that she wasn't one to enjoy having a life jacket on while "safety pup Aunt Tine" walked her around the lake. I put one on her to walk around the lake because I had her and Shane. As I walked around with them, she would stop and sit, trying to pull it off and her head would pop right into it and totally tick her off. Jim stood by the shed and shook his head. I probably could have used one smaller or maybe the ski belt. She taught me that we could stand by the chicken coop for a very long time, that she could stop 50xs on the way to the house just to sit there. She taught me how to duck from a flying toy car. She taught me that if I sit her on the coffee table she would watch a video and I could start picking everything up from the bottom of the stairs only for the video to end and she would throw it all back down there again. She taught me patience to read to same animal book to her over and over and over again just so she could throw it when we finished it. She taught me that my lunch always looked better than hers and yes she would eat all my cookies that I brought. She taught me that if I left the door between the kitchen and the laundry room open one zillionth of an inch she could open it and head straight for her dad's office. She taught me that the high chair wasn't for sitting in but from making Aunt Tine's heart race with fear of her flipping it over. I tend to be a little bit of a safety pup and she taught me that she knew how to push those boundaries by going full hilt to the stairs into the basement. Loved Layne and I wish that I had spent more time with her, but I cerish the few moment that I had.

  8. Happy Birthday Laynee

    I didn't get to know you very well, but it was impossible to miss the fact that your joy was infectious. I always loved it when your mom would bring you into Java Junction while I was working. Every time I use the little sanitizer wipes, I think of you and how you thought I wouldn't notice when you threw half the box in the garbage. I was always excited when your mom asked me to hold you while she talked to a customer. On one particular day at JJ you were being especially ornery. After biting open a candy bag and spilling some flour, your mom just picked you up and tried to scold you without laughing. It was impossible to be angry with you. The last time I saw you was September 5th at the Junior High cross country meet. I wish I would have said "hi" to you but you were surrounded by a bunch of people watching you put on a show. You sure did touch a lot of people. That's what I learned from you, Laynee. . . That we can affect lives when we least expect it. . . That joy can be infectious.


  9. Happy Birthday Laynee,
    I miss you when I come over to your house for bible study. You were always happy and running around in your pajamas. How I miss you. You taught me how good it is to smile at people.

  10. Happy Birthday little one!!
    I can remember the first time I met you - you were just a lil baby and my family was over at A. Karla's for something. Jamee had you because I think you mommy and daddy were gone somewhere. We all took turns holding you because you were such a precious little thing!
    My favorite is when you would do your "leg tricks." No one can lay on their belly and flip and sit up without moving their legs like you could!! :) You were such a funny little girl.
    Well, I hope you have a very happy birthday in heaven!! I bet you have lots of pink balloons and streamers everywhere! Eat lots of ice cream and cake (the icing is the best) and make a big mess because you know, that's the best and only way to correctly eat birthday cake!!
    Miss your smiling face pretty girl! Love ya