Friday, December 31, 2010


Leightyn Leightyn Leightyn,

All I can say is "What a Year!!!" One year ago, I would have imagined what 2010 had in store for us. I remember when you went to Disney and how excited you were. I was sad that I couldn't go with you, but I LOVED talking to you on the phone and hearing that smile and excitement in your voice as you talked to me about your days there. I will never forget when mommy told me on the phone the conversation that the two of you had when you found out you had to leave Disney... something like this... "but mom I don't wanna go home, cant we just stay here?" Then mommy asked you, "well what about daddy, don't you want to go and see daddy, he will miss us." without hesitating you told mommy "daddy can just come stay with us here!" I missed you guys so much that week, but little did I know that it couldn't even begin to compare to how much I would miss you now. about 196 days left......

In March, we all got dressed up and went to church for the deacon ordination. I was one honored and humbled man. To see you and Mylea and mommy setting there, well, it was such a blessing to me, to be called a husband and a father of such a great family that day. I sobbed like a baby giving my testimony and I am sure you was wondering what was wrong with me. I had realized how blessed I had been through out my life, I was so happy. You looked so beautiful in your yellow and blue dress. Mommy always did awesome at dressing you and Mylea. What a day that was, and not only a highlight of my year, but of my life. 144 days left ...........

We took you to a ball game in Springdale. It was so much fun. I was so proud that you got your first autographed baseball. That was a great time. Then, do you remember going shopping for mommy's birthday. You and Mylea had a blast picking out her presents. You would pick out some of the craziest, silliest, useless stuff. I had to veto quite a few options so we could narrow it down to stuff that she could actually get SOME use out of. Unlike the parrot hat and big glasses that you picked out for uncle Nigel for his birthday. You did so good at writing in mommy's card too. Then, the morning finally came when you got to give her the gifts that you and Mylea had picked out. That was a great day for me in 2010. To celebrate mommy's birthday and see the two of you so excited about it. 74 days left........

July was a busy month. We had the fourth and shot off fireworks at Jo and Grandad's. You and Mylea had a lot of fun picking out your fireworks with the money that Grandad gave you. The sparklers were fun, and the chicken was kind of a dud. The neighbors shot off fireworks for what seemed like forever. Then came the big 5. Your birthday, and party was a blast. There were SOOO many people there. You always had a blast on the water slides and there was no slowing you down. You got so many presents. Mommy did an awesome job at decorating the house for you birthday day. We left the decorations up for a while. Mommy and Jo took you and Mylea to Chuck E Cheese, and there is a picture of you and Mylea standing outside with your star glasses on. It breaks my heart to see that look on your face. You tried your best to smile, but it just wasn't you. I'm sorry. Lei ... you were such an amazing little girl and an awesome daughter. .....31 days left

I remember coming home form work one night, you came running to me and gave me that hug that I loved so much. You were so excited and told me you had fixed a dessert just for me. It melted my heart and I felt like I was on top of the world in that very moment. So, after supper you even got up and brought me dessert too me. I Love You SO much! That chocolate delight was the best dessert that I had ever tasted. Thank you for that memory. .....about 9 days left

We went to watch Beauty and the Beast in Fayetteville on Wednesday. You were so scared when it started. I don't know why. Once it started though, you got so into it. You sang every song and hung onto every word. I thank God for the opportunity for that memory. You absolutely LOVED Beauty and the Beast. Afterwards, we beat everybody back to the car (even though no one else knew we were racing) ..... 1 day left

As long as I live I will never forget my last night with you. I met momma at church and picked you and Mylea up. Then we headed to the mall to meet uncle We we, Wendy, and the kids. After staying there for a while we headed off to Cici's pizza. I think you and the rest of the kiddos spent like twenty dollars on games and candy. You ate and acted like such a big girl. We got home and all of you played. We got the video camera out and you were watching yourself make funny faces and you had the sweetest smile on your face. I don't why I got the camera out, but I truly believe it was a "God thing". I went to bed early, and momma said you came soon after me and we cuddled. .........about 8 hours left

What a year it was for you and our family, like momma said "you finally got to meet your Jesus". I still cant even begin to understand everything, but I know with all of my heart that God was in control and there with us (and still is) every step of the way. The rest of the year will be like the rest of our lives. Full of emotional ups and downs. Goods and bads.

Just want you to know that mommy and daddy miss you every single day, and we love you with all our hearts. We are still trying to come up with ways to keep your memory alive and well. You should see the shirts that we had printed up. We have sold close to one hundred. They turned out awesome.

Here's to a an amazing daughter, a here's to a new year, here's to waiting for that glorious day when we see you again.

Love you Lei Lei


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Friday, December 24, 2010

"First" Christmas

My Angel Leightyn,

It's Christmas Eve. The hustle and bustle of the season is in full swing, and yet, it seems like any other day to me. It's hard to believe that Christmas is already here. It's even harder to believe that you aren't going to be here with us. I think that today and tomorrow will be our first big moment without you here with us. Daddy and I just keep saying "if we can only survive Christmas".

We had our Christmas get together with Logan, Laney, Macy, and Mady earlier this week. When all the kids were playing and opening presents, there was a very special friend missing.....YOU! I watched Logan play and I kept noticing him looking for you. All he wanted to play with were "Leightyn's toys". He kept asking me for a mermaid toy that "me and Leightyn always played with". I didn't know what he was talking about. As I watched him run around, I realized how much he has grown up since starting school. I wondered what you would be like now. How would school have changed you? How big would you have gotten in just a few months?

We had Christmas with Grandad, Jo, and Uncle Nigel on Tuesday. Mylea had fun and got some neat toys. There were a few gifts that were hard to watch her open. She got two aprons. I remember picking the aprons out for you and Mylea one morning while you were in Vacation Bible School. Mylea got some things that we picked out at Disney. It's so weird to think about when we bought certain gifts. Our life was normal and we had no clue that things were going to change.

Last night Macy came over and played with Mylea. They had a ball. Mylea was so excited to have a play buddy. It was so good to see her happy and laughing and it also reminding me of old moments that you two shared. Bath time was hard. Both girls wanted to play in the bathtub. As soon as they got it, it was shrieking and laughing and splashing until the moment they got out. I miss the sounds of bath time. You and Mylea could play in the tub for hours! I never realized how quiet Mylea plays until last night. Such good memories from the tub. I remember the time that we spiked your hair straight up with soap. Who knew that you had so much hair!!! I remember you teaching Mylea to swim in the big tub.

Yesterday I kept thinking about last Christmas. How normal and perfect every thing was. As I thought, it hit me that last year was your last Christmas with us. Little did I know that last year would be it for my sweet girl and Grandma Nancy. I thought about families that are celebrating this Christmas and wondering if this will be their last Christmas. I am so thankful that we had no idea that you would not spend another Christmas with us. I can't imagine the pain and hurt that families are going through wondering if their child will survive cancer or other illnesses. It really puts "holiday spirit" in to a new perspective for me.

Many wonder if I am still in a funk. I think I have gotten over it. Now it is more of an emotional funk. I can cry in a split second. As I walk through the house, I am surrounded by pictures of you. It really hits home that that is all I have left to hold on to......a picture. As I look at each picture, I am instantly taken back to that moment. It just really stinks!

Mylea said the sweetest prayer the other night. We were sitting at the table and she goes "Thank you God for mommy, daddy, and my sweet sister Leightyn". Oh Lei babe, how I wish you were here to be her sweet big sister! Last night, I was in bed talking to Mylea. We got to talking about you and I told Mylea that I miss you so much. Mylea looked up at me and said "me too! I miss my leightyn"! It just really stinks that she is not going to have her big sister to grow up with.

Faith and Grace gave us the sweetest Christmas card. They included a picture of you in their picture. The picture was from church camp. You were at the pool. How funny is that....your two favorite and the pool. It was so sweet to see that they wanted to include you. They sure did love you and they miss you so much. All the church kiddos do! I often hear them talking about memories and hearing them say "I wish Lei Lei didn't have to die". They also talk about getting to see you again. Many of them are hoping that you will meet them at Heaven's gates when it is time for them to go home. Some have asked if you are going to forget about them since you have many new friends. I always tell them that they hold a special place in your heart. And I believe they do! You loved your church friends and loved being around them!

Ms "Carol-win" gave me the sweetest present. She put some pictures of you from Sunday School in an album for me to treasure forever. I love it! Mylea proudly carries it around and will show the pictures to anyone who will listen. Mylea loves the one of you, Logan, and Tyler playing dress-up. She starts laughing and says "Logan's wearing a dress". I will cherish these pictures forever. You loved going to Sunday School. You loved playing with your friends. And you loved Ms Carol-win with all your heart.

I wonder what yall do in Heaven for Christmas. I can't imagine that there is not some sort of celebration for Jesus. I mean, without Jesus' birth and death there would be no way to get to heaven.

I love you sweet angel!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas Card Picture and Letter

One afternoon this past summer, the girls and I were pulling out of Wal-Mart. There was a homeless man sitting near the road. Leightyn noticed him and very quickly began asking questions “Who was he? Where is his home? What does he eat? What if it rains tonight? Where does he take a bath? Why doesn’t he have a family? Where would he sleep? What if he got cold?”.

Leightyn told me over and over that we needed to pull in to McDonalds and “get that man some food!” So, I did. I ordered a big bag of food. Leightyn was so happy that he was going to have something to eat tonight. As we handed the man his food, he told us “God bless us, My Jesus saves, Do you know my Jesus?”. We talked for a few seconds before getting in the car and going home.

Although we gave the man some food, Leightyn still was not satisfied. She wanted to know if we could bring him to our house and let him play in the bathtub. She wanted to let him take a nap in her bed. Leightyn brought me her rain boots and umbrella and begged me to take them to the man.

This man made a huge impression on little Leightyn. Every time we drove by the Wal-mart parking lot, Leightyn would start asking questions. “Where was he now? Did some people take him home? Did he get to take a bath? Was he still lost?”

Christian artist, Brandon Heath has written a song that clearly explains how Leightyn saw this homeless man through the eyes of Christ. "Give me your eyes for just one second, Give me your eyes so i can see, Everything that i keep missing, Give me your love for humanity, Give me your arms for the broken hearted, the ones that are far beyond my reach, Give me your heart for the one's forgotten, Give me your eyes so i can see "

So, here is our challenge. Well, Leightyn’s challenge to you. This next year, we challenge you to look for situations where you can serve someone…anyone. A neighbor, a friend, a family member, or maybe a stranger on the street. Ask God to give you eyes that seek out ways to serve. Look for a way to meet the needs of others. Do it in Jesus’ name and in memory of Leightyn. Just think of it as Leightyn’s Christmas present from you.

Will you accept Leightyn’s challenge?

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.” Matthew 6:3-4

If you wish to share how you meet someone’s needs, we would love to hear about it! Email us your story at

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Leightyn's Shirts

Well..... HERE THEY ARE!
We are so EXCITED!

These are the shirts you can buy and proudly wear in memory of Leightyn Nan Holmes.
Starting Monday December 20th we will be putting orders in.
The t-shirts are 50/50 preshrunk and true to size.
The cost is $9.00 for sizes up to XL
ADD $1.00 for XXL, $2.00 for XXXL ect ect
ADD $2.00 for Long Sleeve

The "Leightyn Holmes" that is written on the shirt is HER HANDWRITING that we had the printer copy and paste on the shirt for us.

Finally... we ARE NOT making any money off these, we just want people to spread Leightyn's Lifesong.

If you want us to mail the shirt to you then please add $3.00 for shipping.

If interested, please email me at for payment information.

Thanks and God Bless,
Landen, Missy, and Mylea

Monday, December 13, 2010

In A Funk

Leightyn Nan,

So, I am in a funk. Well, I have been in a funk for the last two weeks but seem to become more "funk"tified every day. Christmas is next week and I could care less about the holidays. Actually, I am ready for them to be over with. How are we suppose to celebrate without you here with us? It doesn't seem right. I know you are celebrating with Jesus this year but I really want you here with us. Lei Babe, I can't believe it has been 128 days since you left us. With my funk comes lots of wondering why you had to leave us. Last night I was driving home from church and it was like it all of the sudden hit me that you really aren't going to walk through the door at any moment. Someone told us that reality would not set in until the six month point, but I think that reality has set in for me and daddy this past week.

We have been super busy going through the holiday motions. Daddy and I had a Christmas party every night last week. This week seems to be more low key and we are excited for that. Friday night we went with the youth group to the Children's Shelter for a Christmas party and it pretty much stunk for me. All these kids who needs a home and have no where to go. Mylea made a buddy real quick. She enjoyed getting to play with a few of the kids. It showed daddy and I just how much she misses having a playmate. After the party, we went to Creekmore to ride the train through the light display. As soon as we pulled up, daddy and I were ready to leave. There were so many memories from last year. You loved riding the train and you really loved the lights. It just really stunk! People all around us happy and loving life. Families that were complete. Kids everywhere. We were surrounded with happiness but yet, it was all daddy and I could do to hold back the tears. I think it is easier to hold back the tears than it is to have people looking at you like you are crazy. But you know, if people would look in our eyes, they would see heartbreak and pain. This whole situation has made me realize how many times I have seen hurting people around my but I never took the time to see if I could help. Or I guess I never really cared for them and their feelings. It makes me realize how much it stinks to be one of the ones who is hurting and to see how people are to busy in their own lives.

Sunday was an emotional mess for me from the beginning. I was sitting in Sunday School and all the of sudden this vision came clear to my mind. I could see you and Logan running across the playground having a great time at recess. The image was so clear that I felt like I was there with you. It only lasted a second, but it was enough to bring on the tears. I held them in because I did not want to be an emotional mess again. It was so nice to see your smiling face but I wish I could have seen it longer. During the morning service, every song we sang got to me. We began the service with "Hark the Harold Angels Sing". As people sang, the tears fell. That was when I finally realized that you were not going to be here with us this Christmas. My heart was broken. It's just not fair. I caught my breath and thought I was ok until I heard the music for "Away In The Manager". That was your song last year in the Christmas play. You were so excited to get to hold the microphone all by yourself and to sing to baby Jesus. I thought I was all teared out but I wasn't. I was sitting on the front row with all the children's choir kids. I heard one of them say "Missy's crying again". I was a tough morning, but the choir kids get me and all my tears. They love me even when I am an emotional mess. We all had a good cry during children's church.

Sunday night was the children's play. I have been rehearsing with the kids since September and it never bothered me. But that night during the performance.....whew! I sat on the floor directing the kids with tears running down my face. When the preschool choir came on stage, I lost it. That was when I realized that you would never be in a play again. I realized that all your friends are growing up and you are not here to experience life with them. That you would never sing in church again. That my baby was really gone. That you should have been on stage dressed as an angel singing a solo. I looked across the church at daddy and it broke my heart. I could tell by his face that he was realizing the same things as me. He just sat in the pew crying, well, really weeping. After the performance, I was talking to Ms Brenda and I just kept saying "She should be here. It's not right! She should be here on the stage singing". I just keep thinking "Why you? Why my sweet Leightyn"?

Today was a better day, well, compared to yesterday. I think I have only cried about six times today. I just thinking that Christmas is next week. I wonder how I am going to make it through Christmas. I mean, the holiday parties and songs are bad enough. How am I suppose to watch Mylea open presents by herself? How are daddy and I suppose to visit family on Christmas and pretend that we are ok? We dread it. We don't know how we are going to survive. When I think about this Christmas, I think about your big Christmas present. We planned to leave the day after Christmas and spend a week at Disney. You and Mylea had been asking for months to go back to Disney. Mylea still talks about wanting to go back. You didn't know it, but you were going to be going back. It was going to be a trip to remember. Dinner at Cinderella's castle. Breakfast with all the princesses. Six days at all the parks. Looking at all the lights. I was so excited about watching you open a box that had your Mickey ears wrapped up. I can only imagine your look and excitement when you found out about the trip......but, it's not going to be happening.

Daddy and I are still learning to deal with our emotions. It seems that my bad days are his good days and daddy's bad days are my good days. It's so hard to deal with all of this. We are now members of a club that no parent every wants to join. No parent wants to know what we are going through. But we somehow make it day by day. We have a very small group of people that we can go to. This group has no idea how much they have helped us and how much they mean to us. Daddy and I have gotten good with putting on a front. We know how to act like every thing is ok and that we are doing great. But, it's hard to hold back the tears and emotions. It's hard to deal with people who think we have had plenty of time to deal with this. I mean, there will never be enough time to deal with losing you. You were our first born and sadly our first loss.

I'm sorry Lei that I have avoided letter for several weeks. I don't want to be Debbie Downer but that's how I feel this I said, I'm a "funk"tified momma!

I love you and miss you more with each passing day!!!!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Leightyn On Spirit 106.3

Last year, Leightyn sang "Hark the Harold Angels Sing" on a local radio station.

Landen contacted the station and asked if Leightyn's song could be played again this year. Not only did the station agree to play her singing, they also asked Landen and I to come in a record a 30 second spot about Leightyn.


If you get a chance, please email Spirit 106.3 ( and thank them for playing Leightyn's song!