Catching up on Captured Moments, Pt. 1

So many fun moments happened in April I haven’t been able to keep up with them! So rather than several different “Captured Moments” posts, I’m doin’ two “catching up” ones instead. πŸ™‚

You’ve heard me talk a lot on this blog about the beauty of nature. Even more beautiful to meΒ is the beauty of the human spirit and the relationships we share (all of it a reflection of our Creator). Many of the Captured Moments in April have to do with just that.

First there was the surprise home visit I was blessed to help orchestrate for the dear people who were my godparents growing up. Carsyn has been out of state for college and wasn’t able to come home for Spring Break. But through a lot of prayer and the collaborative help of her brother as well as others, we were able to fly her home to surprise her mom and dad for their 50th and 51st birthdays (which are only a day apart.) They are some of the most loving, giving people I know, and your jaw would drop to the floor if I listed all of the many ways they have helped so many people around the community without ever expecting a thing in return. So it was such a huge honor to be able to love on and give back to them for once with a surprise they never saw comin’! πŸ™‚

The box we wrapped Carsyn up in. :)

The box we wrapped Carsyn up in. πŸ™‚

Unwrapping...

Unwrapping (co-collaborater Jordan is in the back filming πŸ˜‰ ) …

SURPRISE!

SURPRISE!

Embrace

❀

This smile, right here. Doesn't get anymore real or beautiful than that.

This smile, right here. Doesn’t get anymore real or beautiful than that.

That was a pretty hard one to top, but Easter this year was downright amazing, too. It started out with a bunch of daffodils I’ve come to see as “my miracle flowers,” because although we’ve never planted daffodils, they appeared out of nowhere one winter when I needed a sign of hope the most. They signified new life to me, and daffodils just happen to be one of my favorites. Somehow I knew they were planted by God Himself as a reminder of His tender love and care for me, so I was in awe when not only did they bloom again this year, but they also bloomed a few days before Easter… with a card that had blown right next to them with a message I needed to hear:

Exactly the way I found it, with the card just laying open as though God knew I'd happen upon it and wanted me to read.

Exactly the way I found it, with the card just laying open as though God knew I’d happen upon it and wanted me to read.

Message of love.

Message of love. Know that when God made YOU He had a purpose and plan for your good!

Close-up of the dainty beauties.

Close-up of the dainty beauties.

That very same day was egg-dying day, so you can bet I was feeling inspired!

What my mom called

What my mom called “The Flapper Egg.” First time I ever tried anything other than just dying the egg! Decopauged pretty paper onto it, then hot glued ribbon, a vintage button, and a feather around the outside.

The Easter Bunny somebody was so sweet to give me just a few days before, proudly toting his new treasure!

The Easter Bunny somebody was so sweet to give me just a few days before, proudly toting his new treasure!

With a daffodil slung across your shoulder and an egg in your basket, it's time to get to work!

With a daffodil slung across your shoulder and an egg in your basket, it’s time to get to work!

Just playing with different ways of arranging spring mementoes.

Just playing with different ways of arranging spring mementoes.

My next creation... bold in blue!

My next creation… bold in blue!

All together.

All together.

The Minion Egg from Despicable Me a friend gave me the idea for! Just dip in yellow and blue, glue on googly eye, and draw with sharpie.

The Minion Egg from Despicable Me a friend gave me the idea for! Just dip in yellow and blue, glue on googly eye, and draw with sharpie.

My sweet and silly egg-dying-partner-in-crime! :)

My sweet and silly egg-dying-partner-in-crime! πŸ™‚

Mackenzie's

Mackenzie’s “dork egg.” πŸ˜‰

So much fun, and such a character, this girl.

So much fun and such a character, this girl. πŸ™‚

That’s all for now, but stay tuned for Part 2 coming soon!

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Hiking to The Arch

I have to tell you, I could not imagine some of the things I’ve done since starting this blog, not least of which would be going on two hikes in less than a year. And not only that, but enjoying it!

“The Rifle Arch” is a local destination spot I’d been hearing about for a while now and had been interested in, so when my sweet friend Erin (you’ll remember her from my first ever hike which I blogged about here) mentioned getting out in the sunshine for Spring Break, The Arch seemed like a good choice. In all honesty, I never even knew Rifle had an arch.

I was so thankful to spend the day with Erin and to have her lead as “the Trailblazer”, not only because she’s good company, but also because she took risks that on my own I probably wouldn’t have taken and would have missed out on otherwise. But she’s also never pushy or condescending, which I so appreciate. Everyone could use a friend like that!

And oh, man–it was worth it! So serene and majestic, and I think I liked it even more than Grizzly Creek because of the more private feeling once you reach the top. But words just don’t do it justice. You’ll have to look through the photos to see for yourself!

I’m still the girl who’d choose heels over sneakers and a ticket to a show over a camp site any day,Β but I’m beginning to see the merits in a modest hike in good company now and again, and I am very glad I went both times. I would have missed out on these amazing views otherwise!

So without further ado. Please enjoy, and if you ever get the chance, definitely go!

This is what the hike to The Arch looks like starting out. Not very impressive, sort of desert-y, but then...

This is what the hike to The Arch looks like starting out. Not very impressive, sort of desert-y, but then…

THIS. :)

THIS. πŸ™‚

Erin and I! One of the best companions ever for a hike. Or just in general, really. ;)

Erin and I! One of the best companions ever for a hike. Or just in general, really. πŸ˜‰

I'm a details girl and very visual, so to me the moss on this rock and scraggly tree beside it had so much character. It's more of a wild, rustic kind of beauty, and I love the movement in the tree.

To me the moss on this rock and the scraggly tree beside it had so much character. It’s more of a wild, rustic kind of beauty, and I love the movement in those kinds of trees. (One of these days I’ll learn the names of things.)

This by far is one of my favorite pics. I played around with several different angles which I'll show, but this angle ended up being my favorite I think. I just loved this stately weed thing. standing tall and proud just out on its own. Its very unassuming at first and not very attractive, but will you just look at the view that weed has? It's just one lonely weed set up high, but man, is that lucky weed. ;)

This by far is one of my favorite pics. I played around with several different angles which I’ll show, but this angle ended up being my favorite I think. I just loved this stateliness of this weed standing tall and proud just out on its own. Its very unassuming at first and not very attractive, but it’s all about your perspective. It may just be a lonely weed set up high, but would you just look at the view that weed has? πŸ™‚

Weed on Hill

Close-up.

One more.

One more. P.S. See the bit of leftover snow still there on the top of the mountains? Beautiful, but that’s as close to it as I’ll personally get. πŸ˜‰ Rome wasn’t built in a day!

Just trying to capture those details again. God is an artist, and I love how you can see His fingerprints all over creation. Loved the contrast of the rough texture of the rock and the fuzzy plant beside.

God is such an artist, and I love how you can see His fingerprints all over creation. Loved the contrast of the rough texture of the rock and the fuzzy plant beside.

Just in front of The Arch, Erin snapped this cool shot. It looks pretty epic, right? There's a reason I call these "captured moments..." just wait for it...

Just in front of The Arch, Erin snapped this cool shot. It looks pretty epic, and I gotta tell you, I thought I was pretty awesome right at this moment. πŸ˜‰ A real frontierswoman, conquering the elements and making it all the way to the top. And then there’s reality… πŸ˜‰

Truth in advertising, right here. This is me struggling up the last little bit, hanging onto the tree for dear life after Erin just scaled it like a pro and turned back with much compassion to take this shot. I have to tell you though, we bonded, me and that tree. There's something to that tree hugging business after all. ;)

This is me hanging onto the tree for dear life after Erin just scaled that miniscule little lip like a pro and turned back with much compassion to take this shot. I have to tell you though, we bonded, me and that tree. πŸ˜‰

The Arch!

The Arch!

Favorite moment, right here. So serene and majestic, sitting underneath the cool arch with blue sky above you and a valley spread before you bathed in light. It took my breath away, and I could have stayed there forever. Nothing can compare to God's handiwork. So inspiring.

Favorite moment, right here. So serene and majestic, sitting underneath the cool arch with blue sky above you and a valley spread before you bathed in light and shadow. It took my breath away, and I could have stayed there forever. Nothing can compare to God’s handiwork. So inspiring.

The tree that shared this little hiding spot with us.

The tree that shared this little hiding spot with us.

Erin capturing me capturing moments. Feel like this photo is a pretty good representation of who I'm starting to become these days. I used to never take pictures, and now I can barely stop. There's so much to discover! Some may say you're not living life if you're living it behind the camera. But for me, this blog and documenting everyday life has caused me to live it more. I stop to see things I wouldn't normally see. Stop to smile and give thanks. For that reason, I am very thankful for this blog, and I don't think I'll stop taking pictures anytime soon.

Erin capturing me capturing moments. Feel like this photo is a pretty good representation of who I’m starting to become these days. I used to never take pictures, and now I can’t stop. There’s so much to discover! Some may say you’re not living life if you’re living it behind the camera, but for me, this blog and documenting everyday life has caused me to live it more. I stop to see things I wouldn’t normally see. Appreciate, wonder, smile, and explore. And because of that, I don’t think it’s something I’ll be stopping anytime soon.

Loved the tinge of red on some of those leaves along with the pine needles in contrast to the more waxy finish of the other leaves.

Loved the tinge of red on some of those leaves and the contrast ofΒ the pine needles to the more waxy finish of the other leaves.

Was so struck by this silhouette close to the top. Absolutely gorgeous!

Was so struck by this silhouette of the rock face close to the top. Absolutely gorgeous and so awe-inspiring.

Panning out a bit more. It's enough to take a person's breath away!

Panning out a bit more. It’s enough to take a person’s breath away!

Last shot, and also probably my favorite out of all of them. Isn't Erin gorgeous?! This is one of the only ones of Erin my computer would let me download, but glad it's a good one at least!

Last shot, and also probably my favorite out of all of them. Isn’t Erin gorgeous?! She looks like she could be on the cover of an adventure novel or something!