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If you build it, we will come!

October 20, 2015

Last Friday, we set off on an adventure to make a little dream of mine come true.

Destination?

Dyersville, Iowa.

Home of the baseball field featured in the movie, “Field of Dreams”. One of my favorite movies of all time!

If you had told me years ago, when I first saw that movie as a young girl, that I would someday be traveling to visit and play on that field with Bryan Parks (who was simply a classmate and friend of mine from church at the time), my parents, my grandma, and my FIVE children, I wouldn’t have believed you.

How special it was to step onto that beautiful field, underneath a vibrant blue sky, with people who have made many of my dreams – both big and small – come true.

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“If you build it, he will come.”
-The Voice

x

“Hey, Dad…you wanna have a catch?”
-Ray Kinsella

7

“People will come. They’ll come to Iowa for reasons they can’t even fathom. They’ll turn up your driveway not knowing for sure why they’re doing it. They’ll arrive at your door as innocent as children, longing for the past.”
-Terrance Mann

6 cover

“Is this heaven?”
“No, it’s Iowa.”
“Iowa? I could have sworn this was heaven.”
-Ray & John Kinsella

8

“I wish for a chance to squint at a sky so blue that it hurts your eyes just to look at it. To feel the tingling in your arm as you connect with the ball. To run the bases – stretch a double into a triple, and flop face-first into third, wrap your arms around the bag. That’s my wish…”
-Moonlight Graham

8a

“They’ll watch the game and it’ll be as if they dipped themselves in magic waters. The memories will be so thick they’ll have to brush them away from their faces.”
-Terrance Mann

11a

“I loved this game. Shoot, I’d play for nothing! It was the crowd, rising to their feet when the ball was hit deep…”
-Shoeless Joe Jackson

11c

“We just don’t recognize life’s most significant moments while they’re happening. Back then I thought, ‘Well, there’ll be other days.’ I didn’t realize that that was the only day.”
-Moonlight Graham

12

“Did you ever hold a ball or a glove to your face? Man, I did love this game…the sounds, the smells.”
-Shoeless Joe Jackson

11b

“I’d wake up at night with the smell of the ball park in my nose, the cool of the grass on my feet…”
-Shoeless Joe Jackson

13

“The one constant through all the years has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It has been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time.”
-Terrance Mann

14a

“This field, this game: it’s a part of our past. It reminds us of all that once was good and it could be again. Oh, people will come. People will most definitely come.”
-Terrance Mann

15

From lying around in an orphanage bed in rural Guizhou, China…to walking around on the Field of Dreams in rural Iowa.
What a journey you’ve had, little Haven. What a journey…

1 profile

He was the one who taught me, years ago, to love the game. He was my little league coach throughout grade school. He was my pitching coach in high school. And he played alongside me in a co-ed league in my adulthood. I can’t think of one time in my life when he didn’t drop everything he was doing to play catch with me. No matter how busy he was, he always said yes when I asked him to join me. That’s just the kind of dad he was…and is. How special it was to play catch with him on this very special field this past weekend…

2

This guy.

Gosh, I love him.
He has made so many of my dreams come true…

3b

My little buddy, Shoeless Jackson, on the pitcher’s mound…re-enacting the movie.

Love him to pieces…

3bbIMG_0191

She’s the little girl who turned my dream of becoming a mother into a reality. The one who I look at, and feel as though I am looking into a mirror – in so many ways. The one who happens to love playing ball just as much as I do. She’s sugar, and spice, and everything nice…with a little bit of competitiveness thrown in there for good measure…

3c

Pure joy!

He spent two hours pitching not only to our family, but also to complete strangers who wanted to join in the fun with us…but didn’t bring bats or balls with them to the field. It was so great to share the joy of the game with people we had never met before, and will never see again. Off the field, we knew nothing about one another. On the field, we felt like old friends. That’s the magic of baseball right there….the magic of sports. Truly awesome…

3d

She opened our eyes to the beauty of adoption and changed our lives for the better. And she’s the one who Haven can thank someday for his entrance into our family. Why? Because after experiencing the joy that she brought into our lives, we knew that we just had to do it all over again…

3e

She’s a hoot!  And she’s the biggest surprise we’ve ever received. The news of her upcoming arrival shocked us all. But, God knew we needed this little red-headed treasure in our family!  She is living proof that His plans are far better than ours. Can’t imagine life without her…

4

My sweet, strong, 86-year-old grandmother.
Playing ball on the Field of Dreams.
What a beautiful sight it was…

3

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