Our Family

Our Family


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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Janet's Celebration Service

I am completely overwhelmed by how many people have viewed Janet's Celebration Service online. I think there were over 4000 last time that I looked and I would guess there were over 1000 in attendance. Her story is continuing to spread and with every view God's name is being heard around the world.

I'd love for you to be able to watch it still if you have a chance. If nothing else watch the video that she left and then her son, Bryan (my husband) and daughter, Jordan, sing a song in her memory right after. (Her video starts at the 52 minute mark)

Her brother, David, also gives an amazing eulogy of the chronology of her life right after. If you watch please comment and let us know your thoughts. We are so glad to be able to share this with everyone. Here is the link to her service!

Jordan and I also wanted all of Janet's readers to know that we will both be blogging on our respective blogs about life and how our family is coping after losing our sweet Janet. We'd love to have you follow along with us as we continue Janet's legacy. My post yesterday talks about our potential plans for Janet's blog and how was want to continue sharing her story! Please check it out.

Jordan's Blog & Jenna's blog

We love y'all and thank you so much for loving on our Janet and helping her share her story.


Sunday, December 29, 2013

Live Stream

Janet's Celebration Service will be live streamed tomorrow (12/30/13) at 10 AM CST. I am posting the link  below. Please join us if you're able!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Funeral Arrangements

We wanted to let everyone know that the arrangements have been finalized for Janet's funeral.

The visitation will be Sunday night (12/29) from 4-7 pm and the funeral will be Monday (12/30) at 10 am. Both are being held at First Baptist Church in Bentonville at 200 SW "A" Street, Bentonville, AR 72712

For our out of town friends and family, arrangements have been made at the TownePlace Suites in Bentonville for a rate of $59/night good for Friday through Monday nights. To reserve a room at this rate please contact them at 479-621-0202 and let them know you are wanting to reserve a room for Janet Pate's funeral for the rate of $59. Their address is 3100 SE 14th St, Bentonville, AR 72712.

In lieu of flowers we are strongly encouraging support towards Janet's Memorial Fund. This fund will continue her legacy of investing in student's lives and her desire for them to know and serve The Lord.

The donations received to this memorial will be designated for the youth ministry of FBC Bentonville where Janet served for the last 12 years.  The gifts will be used to scholarship students desiring to attend church camp and will also be used for future student ministry building expansion.

If you'd like to donate money you can mail your donation to :

First Baptist Church Bentonville
220 South Main Street
Bentonville, AR 72712

And please make sure to put in the memo line "Janet's Memorial Fund"

Thank you again for the tremendous outpouring of support and love for our family during this difficult time.

Janet's Glorious Homecoming

Our family wanted to pass along the word that Janet is no longer sick. She is now in the presence of our Savior and is completely healed.

We will post information about services as we have it.

In lieu of flowers we are strongly encouraging support towards Janet's Memorial Fund. This fund will continue her legacy of investing in student's lives and her desire for them to know and serve The Lord.

The donations received to this memorial will be designated for the youth ministry of FBC Bentonville where Janet served for the last 12 years.  The gifts will be used to scholarship students desiring to attend church camp and will also be used for future student ministry building expansion.

If you'd like to donate money you can mail your donation to :

First Baptist Church Bentonville
220 South Main Street
Bentonville, AR 72712

And please make sure to put in the memo line "Janet's Memorial Fund"

"This is the day that The Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad I'm it."

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Day

This is Jordan, Janet's daughter, giving a brief update.

Not a lot has changed since Jenna last posted. My mom has been in hospice since last Thursday. Since being here, her body has slowly declined. Overall she has been very peaceful and in no pain. She is to the point now where she is mostly sleeping, and not eating or drinking anymore. Her body is showing signs that the end (or beginning for her), indeed, is near.

God has given us all such peace through this time, and we are so thankful for the sweet moments we were able to have together leading up to what is soon to come. It's been strange, though, all this taking place leading up to Christmas. It's caused me to pause and reflect on what Christmas really means. Because quite frankly, it just hasn't "felt like Christmas" at all - which led me to start a blog of my own where my first post is about this very topic - what makes Christmas feel like Christmas. You can check it out here.

My mom has built an incredible legacy with her life. A legacy that, I pray, will not end with her passing from this life to the next. I pray that my family and I can continue what she started, and ultimately, what Christ started in her.

Our hearts ache beyond what words can express. I have no idea what the days ahead of us hold. We are losing a precious gift - Mom, G-ma, Lucy (Tony's sweet nickname to her), a daughter, a sister, a friend...  But I thank God for the hope we have in Him. That this is not the end! We do not set our hope on what is seen, but on what is unseen. On the day when we will all be united with Christ as His bride. I thank God for this hope! I thank God for Jesus, and that even in the midst of such sorrow, we can rejoice in hope.

Merry Christmas!

(And Happy 51st Birthday, Mom! She said to us two weeks ago how wonderful it would be for her to get to see Jesus face-to-face on her birthday. She just might get that birthday wish. And what a wonderful gift she will be in heaven!)

"This is the day that The Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it."

Thursday, December 19, 2013

A peace that passes all understanding...

Hi everyone, this is Jenna. I just wanted to update on Janet.

We've had a very sweet week with her. A lot of our family got to come in to town to see her and spend a few days with us. She felt good enough to be up part of the time and do a lot of things for us to leave memories for us and the kids, like recording books for them and leaving family recipes for Jordan and I. We are so grateful to have had this time because we realize so many aren't able to do those things before losing their loved ones.

She was admitted to the Circle of Life hospice home today to try and get her nausea and pain under control. She has had a very rough time with it and we are so glad for her to finally get some rest and relief.

Our family appreciates the prayers, food, cards and thoughts that y'all have sent our way. We are so appreciative of the Facebook messages and posts too and while Janet has been unable to keep up with them, the rest of us are doing our best to read them.  I will try to update with changes as best as I can. We are asking for no visitors.

I also just wrote a post on my blog about how our family is coping if you're interested: Here

Friday, December 13, 2013


I went in this morning for an updated platelet count and found out that it had dropped to 7,000, which anything less than 10,000 is critical. To put it in perspective, Rhett (my 10 month old grandson) had his blood drawn today and his platelets were normal at 515,000.

I am now sitting in the hospital getting a transfusion of platelets and blood. This will be my last trip to the hospital. Tomorrow we are meeting with hospice.

We met with the funeral home yesterday to begin making arrangements and we are meeting with the cemetery on Monday.

This all may seem morbid to others, but it feels like God is wrapping up an early Christmas/Birthday present and pouring a lot of grace in there because it doesn't feel like it's happening to me. Although my body seems to be shutting down, I have felt great all day and The Lord has allowed to me feel well enough to visit with friends and family.

So while all medical tests point to me being "critical", The Lord has given me grace to feel completely and surprisingly stable today. 

There is a song with the lyrics: "You're all I want, You're all I ever needed."
I told some friends a few weeks ago that I didn't feel like those words were true for me because I still had so much I wanted to see and do. I wanted to be able to see my grand kids grow up. But I can honestly say now that these lyrics are true for me. Jesus is truly all I want and need. I know my family will be okay and that they'll take care of each other. 

"This is the day that The Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it."

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

"It Is Well With My Soul"

How do you begin saying goodbye to friends and loved ones?

As most of you know I went to the ER on Monday.  I had been to radiation and spent the afternoon with Jordan.  I started having chest pains and my hands started tingling.  I figured it was anxiety related and decided to go home. At the last minute I decided ER was the better option.  I am thankful the right decision was made.  I found out last night that it was a heart attack and it was not minor.  I feel this is still someone else's body everything is happening to.  It seems like another box continues to be checked off my list.  Who would have thought a heart attack could be added to my list?  My platelet count (allows your blood to clot) continues to drop as well. I should be over 150,000 but when I was admitted I was at 38,000 and before going home today it had dropped to 20,000. Below 10,000 is critical so we will continue to monitor.

We could choose several options, but my family, oncologist and myself agree that it's time to surrender it all to the Lord.  I feel He's told me all along to wait and trust in Him.  So I was discharged today and we are home waiting for His perfect timing.   We will be talking to Hospice care soon and decided to make everything as comfortable and easy for me. 

I considered letting Jenna blog for me tonight but realized this journey might be coming to an end and I'm excited to see how the final chapter plays out.  I pray God will be very merciful to my family and they will not see me suffer.   I've lost a lot of weight and still struggle with my appetite.  I have 8 more rounds of radiation and praying it will alleviate the lower back pain. 

This is where unexplained peace comes in the midst of the storm.  No one can explain it to you.  Knowing Jesus has it all in His Hands and is in complete control is how you have this peace.  We as a family have shared many tears today but we can all say "It is well with my soul." 

"Today is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it."

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Update on Janet

Hi friends, this is Jenna. I wanted to post an update about the latest with Janet.

Janet was admitted to the Emergency Room last night due to shortness of breath and chest pain.  They kept her overnight to run some tests. We just got word back this morning that the tests came back positive that Janet did have a minor heart attack last night, she is doing fine right now but they’re keeping her for observation for 48 hrs. This afternoon they are doing an Echocardiogram to see if there is a possibility that the fluid that has been accumulating around her lungs is around her heart now too. The plan for now is to wait on the oncologist to come and meet with cardiologists to come up with a plan for further treatment.

Please keep Janet and Tony and the rest of our family in your prayers. Janet is feeling okay but we are asking for no visitors right now. Thank you so much. I will be updating here with new details as soon as we get them.We covet your prayers now more than ever.


Friday, December 6, 2013

Family Pictures

Katie just got back our family pictures to us that we did right before Thanksgiving. We love how these turned out.

Thanks so much Katie!!!

Don't forget too that Katie's giving away a free Milestone session on Jenna's blog right now.

All you have to do to enter to LIKE Katie's facebook page and comment on her blog with your favorite Christmas tradition.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013


So thankful to be back home after and getting some good rest in Colorado.  I was able to go into work for a few hours yesterday and it felt good to be behind my desk again. 

My appetite is slowly coming back and I am so thankful for that wonderful blessing.  I need a lot more meat on my bones but at least I'm headed in the right direction.  I was able to get good rest today and attended our staff Christmas party tonight.  It feels so good to be around friends again and not having a set agenda to follow but to allow my body to rest and move as it is able. 

I began a new treatment of radiation today on my lower back pain that I have been having.  I will have a total of eleven treatments and I am praying for amazing results again with no side effects.  We will see my doctor on Friday and will take the next steps accordingly for future treatment plans in regards to chemo or not.  I have not had any chemo type drug in my body since before the end of September.  Jesus has definitely been fighting this battle for me and we are praying for wisdom on the next step of action to fight this battle.  I am so thankful that no matter what, I am resting in His timing and planning and there is no need to worry about my tomorrow.  He has the battle already won. Psalms 28:8-9 "The Lord is the strength of his people; he is the saving refuge of his anointed.  Oh, save your people and bless your heritage!  Be their shepherd and carry them forever."

"Today is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it."

Monday, December 2, 2013

Katie Cole Photography

You might have noticed that Janet has a new picture at the top of her blog. Our sweet friend Katie Cole did new family pictures for us right before we left for Colorado since the old pictures were missing our two newest family members (David and Rhett).

Katie is a photographer located in Bentonville who specializes in Families, Kids and Newborns. She has done several sessions for our family including the latest picture above. She has the sweetest spirit and we love her work.

Here are just a few of the photos she has done for us:

Katie is giving away a free Milestone session right now on my blog if you want to enter hop on over here to Jenna's blog!
You'll love her as much as we do!!!


Saturday, November 30, 2013

"Thoughts Of Thanksgiving Week"

 My thoughts today November24th, 2013

The week of Thanksgiving officially began on the calendar today.  I pray I never have to wait until this week to be grateful for ALL God has done and continues to do for me.  I'm sitting on a plane headed to Breckenridge, CO to spend quality refreshing time with my family.  This is our first official "family vacation".  We'll have three of our four married kids along with us and seven out of eight grand kids together at a home in the mountains for the week provided by Tony's amazing friend. Since my last big battle of hospitalization I've seen God literally pick me up and carry me through this storm.  It has been quiet a journey, but He's never left my side and continues to show me grace and strength for each new day. 

Several months ago I was afraid  that I would cause our family to miss out on this trip.  Jordan and I were on our way home from Oklahoma after seeing a young man lose his fight against cancer.  I wasn't feeling well and was so ready to be back home.  Jordan was looking for a song to play for me that reminded her of my life and I was wondering in my mind would I physically be able to make a trip to Colorado without health issues and would I be burdensome to my family. As I was deep in my thoughts I looked up and on the side of the road there was a sign that said "Colorado Lift Tickets".  That may not seem weird, but the timing and location was nothing but God "winking" at me to give me hope that this trip would become possible.  The sign was in the middle of nowhere in Oklahoma and the timing was not a coincidence like some would claim, but just another reminder that God is in every detail of our lives. 

The kids and grand kids will be out purchasing lift tickets tomorrow and tackling the snow slopes.  I'm so thankful to know I will not be putting on skis but can go out and watch them have a great time.  

November 26th Tuesday

Everyone has adapted well to the altitude after some much needed rest from traveling to get to Colorado.  The first day of travel is always the longest and hardest, but God sent His angel armies all around us and allowed us safety even through the snow storm while driving to our vacation home for the week.  The home is incredible in the midst of the mountains.  All the adults have their own bedrooms.  The adults with kids had to share rooms, but beds were available for everyone.  Tony and I had the master suite and God was into every detail of our room.  The king size bed and pillows are exactly what we have at home, so we didn't even have to adjust to a new mattress.  That may seem like a coincidence, but I say it is another "God wink". He has provided everything for our week of refreshment and relaxation.  We were able to find a Walmart with box fans in Colorado in the middle of Winter. Our family believes box fans are the best way to get good rest to drown out the noise, especially when you have 15 people including 2 toddlers and a baby under one roof.  

Everyone seems to be enjoying themselves whether hanging out at the  house or on the ski slopes.  I am so thankful my appetite has increased and I'm getting plenty of rest.  The menu was planned out for the entire week, and after several hours of grocery shopping, Tony and Kimberly conquered the list of every item and ingredient.  There will probably be several more runs to the store, but the bulk of the food shopping was accomplished.  

Thanksgiving Day-Blessed beyond measure.  Everyone did their part to help prepare an unbelievable meal for our Turkey dinner.  We all were able to go out and play in the snow and even conquered getting a family picture before our meal.  Afterwards we all just relaxed and had no agenda.  The best part of the day was in the evening.  After putting the 2 little ones to bed we had a family worship service.  Everyone shared what they were thankful for and we worshipped together in songs as a family and ended our evening in prayer.  There was no doubt God was in the midst and He provided a moment I think we'll always cherish.  I love Psalm 121 because I feel that is what God did for us all week.  We lifted our eyes to the hills (mountains) and the closeness of His grace and presence was with us all week.   He never slumbered or slept but kept His care over us.  To  have 5 separate families come together and truly enjoy time together with no arguing or dysfunctional times for a whole week is a miracle.  We truly soaked in God's goodness with such gratitude for allowing us time do rest in Him.  

I truly felt so many prayers being poured out over me this past week.  I rested well along with a small appetite and relaxed the whole time other than a little shopping on Wednesday.  After everyone else left early Friday morning, Tony and I had a day alone with our twins.  We took them to dinner at Bubba Gump and it is always an extra blessing to spend time with the most amazing teenagers I've ever met.  

Kaitlyn & Kimberly
We are now back on our flight home and I have mixed emotions.  I can look back and see that this week was definitely orchestrated by God's hand in every area.  We step back into reality in a few short hours, but I'm at peace with whatever lies ahead.  I could die tonight and feel my life was complete because of ALL Jesus has done for me.  He has been my everything and without Him  I have no Hope or true Joy.  My heart's desire is to watch my grand babies grow up and live their lives totally sold out to Him and I am so thankful for our grown adult children having the same desire to raise their kids pointing them to our Savior in their daily lives.  Nothing is more taxing and rewarding than a young family raising their children in this world and teaching God's principles and truths. But seeing your fruits/ reward when your kids become parents themselves with the right perspective is an unexplainable blessing. 

Thank you for all the prayers and thoughts towards our family this week.  The pictures below give you a small glimpse of our blessed week.  

Kaitlyn, Kimberly, Rhett, Me, Tony, Jaxon, Cadence, Addison & Hudson

The Pate Gang

The Buettemeyer Gang

The Street Couple

Me & my best friend

Bryan, Me & Jordan

"Today is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it."