July 30 - August 7, 2011

12U A Western Nationals in Fort Collins, Colorado.
...It was a LOOOOOONG 2 day trip to Fort Collins from Seattle.  Kinz and I were off for 10 days of SOFTBALL FUN! We met our AWESOME caravanning buddies in the morning... grabbed some coffee, and we were off! :)

I TOTALLY enjoyed our talks along the way with Kinz and sharing this time with the Hands, Peterson's, Ensrud's and the Riggs.  We stopped in Idaho the first night and had a FUN dinner and let the girls swim.  It was HOT!

I think driving the second day was much harder... 'ARE WE THERE YET?'  
When we got there - we had a LOT of down time and we were able to get out and explore a little... Here we are in Estes Park! It was BEAUTIFUL!

Made me want to siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiing, ♫ ♪ THE HILLLLLLLLS ARE ALIIIIIIIIIIIVE, WITH THE SOUND OF MUUUUUUUUUUUSIC! ♫ ♪ Laaaaaaa laaaaaaa laaa laaa :)

I even got to hook up with one of my dear friends all the way back from Kindergarten (maybe even preschool - I can't quite remember) KIM, it was SOOOOOOOOO GOOD to see you!!!! (grabbed a pic off her facebook cuz the pic the waitress took of us didn't turn out super FAB! hehehehe! :)

LOVE that she's wearing her ORDINARY HERO t-shirt in this pic - with her beautiful daughter!!! It was SO fun to sneak away from softball for a bit and catch up with KIM!!! LOVE YOU KIM!!!

...Was TOTALLY hoping to catch up with another one of my friends named Kimberly (from AGCI) but we couldn't get it to work out. DARN.


The girls had a great time.  They placed in the top 9 out of 38 teams! NOT BAD!  :)

The Momma's had a good time toooooo! :) 

10 days is a long time to be away though and we were EXCITED to get back home!  So, as soon as they were out of the tournament we jumped in the car and headed HOME! YAY! :)




I have been touched to TEARS with prayer in my life... there are THREE times specifically where someone prayed for me and my family.  ...someone who knew how IMPORTANT it is to GIVE IT TO GOD - to take your situation and give it to HIM! SO HUGE! ...I've never really been a very good 'out-loud' prayer, my family didn't pray out loud and I have really rarely experienced someone PRAYING for me out loud, talking to HIM!  Asking Him to LISTEN to OUR situation! WOW!

...the first time I was part of this seriously HUMBLING experience was when we were with our small group and we had planned a FAMILY MISSION trip to Kenya and at the dinner table Steven LIFTED our FAMILY right up to HIM! I was overwhelmed with gratitude that they didn't just send us off with well wishes - but that he spoke directly to HIM! He prayed for specific things for our family, for protection, wisdom, strength, opportunities...  and it was REALLY special  to us. I felt like GOD was right there in the room, listening to him and looking over us...  TEARS.
     *Our trip to Kenya was AMAZING, it lead to another trip to Kenya to help a group called the Joy Divine Children's Organization which then led us to ADOPTING from Ethiopia.

...another time someone said, 'let me pray for you' (I honestly get choked up every time I even think about this!) my daughter was having a hard time at school with friends - and my heart just HURT for her, and as a Mom, I just didn't know what to do to help her... Until her 3rd and 5th Grade teacher, Lisa, sat down with me and GAVE IT TO GOD!!! WOW! She prayed for me and for my daughter. She gave it to HIM! I was humbled. She didn't try to fix it or tell me how to fix it for her - but she gave it to the ONE who knows our hearts and knows how to help us and what our next step should be... She gave it to HIM! I felt SO blessed to have this person in my life to PRAY for us. I was moved to TEARS.
     *My daughter has since switched schools (a couple times) and now is thriving as a Junior and is doing strong socially and spiritually!
...MY prayer is to be more BRAVE like them, to not be afraid if my words don't come out perfect and completely articulate, for Him to give me the wisdom of what to say and the COURAGE to do it.

Another time someone prayed for me, Elle J :), for my family, my DAUGHTER in Ethiopia - I didn't hear her, but the genuine and sincere thoughtfulness of it brought me to tears. My friend and her family said a prayer for our lil girl in Ethiopia - they did it in such a special way....


They prayed for our little girl. They gave it to HIM and sent up a lantern in the sky as a symbol of their thoughts and PRAYERS for her! WOW! No one has ever EVER done anything like this for us. We again were humbled, someone is talking to GOD on our behalf! know someone REALLY cares about you, when they give it to HIM!
*We have since gotten home with our little girl (looking forward to blogging more about this) and I have seen SO many answered prayers with HER - she is a TOTALLY different kid than the one I met at HH. ♥

The POWER of PRAYER is SO HUGE!! HUGE!!! I write this RIGHT now some of my dear friends are having to deal with uncertainty in their adoption. They are scared for their children in Ethiopia, their hearts are hurting, doubting... PLEASE pray for a MIRACLE for these families and their children so they can bring them HOME, so they will have a FAMILY FOREVER.