About $100 later, we had built a small retaining wall, backfilled it with dirt and put the start to the patio. As fate would have it, the first brick pattern I tried was a perfect fit.
Yet, mother nature got in the way. This past weekend, we had hoped to start laying some of the brick; but after 2 rows the rain poured down and we were left with a muddy mess.
At least I have a plan.