Monday, October 29, 2012


Every time I sit down in front of the computer to create a new entry in my blog, I always sit for clsoe to ten minutes while my mind jumps all over the place. I never know just how to start. I have never been an effective writer. Only a few short years ago, I still e-mailed papers for my master's class to my parents so they could critique and correct my ramblings. I have never been able to fully organize my thoughts. Sometimes I feel this is true in my life. I want things to be perfect and I try so hard to reach perfection, but it seems as though I can never attain it. It usually just ends up being "good enough for who it's for!" It reminds me of a book I read, maybe in 4th grade. It was titled something like How to be a Perfect Person in 10 Days (or something like that). The one thing I remember was the last step/day. The boy had to sit there and do nothing. Not think about anything, not say anything. Nothing! The boy ended up realizing that no matter what he did, he wasn't going to be perfect. Sometimes I struggle with that.

This past week has tested my faith and reliance upon God. As usual, I have failed. I have tried to handle things on my own and not give my worries to God. When that happens, we fail. We fail miserably. For the first time in seven weeks, I have felt a strain between my better half and myself. We have kind of been at each other over small, insignificant things. Things that when I look back and compare it to what God's grand plan might be, they pale in comparison. Does it really matter what dresser we put in our bedroom (changing bedroom layout upstairs), or if we get a pack-n-play that has an attachment to change a baby's diaper on it, or even if my wife puts the creamer back in the fridge before I am finished drinking my coffee on Saturday mornings (yes....this was really something that upset me!)? No, these things don't matter, however, when we don't put our worries in God's hands and try to go through this life on our own, this is what happens to us. If God is not at the center of your life, as human beings, our selfishness gets in the way of wanting to serve others.

For the first time in six weeks (it is hard to believe that is has been six weeks since we had that infamous ultrasound) I questioned the path God has set before us. Now that the basement is finished, besides moving a few things back upstairs and vice versa, we have cleaned one room upstairs and are preparing to move bedrooms around so we can start to get the nursery ready. We have been looking online and trying to figure out what we will need, and what we won't need. I never thought that would lead to disagreements and a trying weekend like we had. I guess that is what you get when you have two people as stubborn and bull-headed as Kelsea and myself! However, we figured we better start picking stuff out because heer due date is only 14 weeks and 5 days away! Plus, her c-section will be sooner than that, so I am starting to get a little anxious! Anyways, after meeting with Dr. Kaguma last Thursday and hearing Hayden's heartbeat (it has slowed down to about 142 bpm), I came home and started lookin online for things we might need. One thing I found was regarding travel in a car. Some people had talked online about not being able to use a regular car seat, but having to use a "bed" instead. I DID NOT like that idea and for the first time, became upset because that was not what I wanted. I got frustrated and sad, but after about 10 minutes, I finally turned back to God and asked Him for strength to continue to serve Him and His plan he has for us.

Yesterday helped though. After running the sound board at church yesterday morning, Kelsea and I returned last night to serve alongside many wonderful people at the Columbus Road Trunk-or-Treat. It was a fantastic evening and I was continuously amazed at the number of people that were in and around our church last night: members and the public.

We have been going a million miles an hour this past week and although it wears me down, I thank God every night because I know He is preparing us for our future. I feel as every day passes, I am running out of time to finish the house and pick things out for the nursery. I just keep telling myself, if I can make it to tomorrow, then I will have some more time to accomplish x, y, & z. Welcome to parenthood, right???

I have thought a lot lately about the past. I have looked at our situation and what other people are doing for us. The time they have taken out of their busy lives so they could put as at the front for awhile. I think back to moments in my life, especially the past 6-7 years and I think about times when I could've taken time out of my busy schedule to show someone some encouragement and let them know somebody out there was thinking about them. I feel like I let a lot of these opportunities get away because I was a selfish person who didn't have God in my life. Today, and every single day, Kelsea and I sit down and read through the cards in the mail that still continue to flood our mailbox. We have recieve mail from 21 different states in the past six weeks and every single person who has taken the time to write us is greatly appreciated. It is comforting to know just how many people out there are sending love and prayers our way. It is so reaffirming that God is working in many places, all of the time, whether we can see him or not. Even though I wasn't the perfect friend, neighbor, or loved one when others needed my support, it is so truly amzing to see that God is such a gracious and merciful God.

Defiitely not the "perfect" dog!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Seasons End and Seasons Begin

Well it has been almost two weeks since I last posted and I don't think I should try to fit two weeks of information in this update. I would probably bore the few readers who come across this! Since it has been almost two weeks, that means we have two and a half weeks before we go back to St. Louis for our next appointment (down there!). We have an appointment with Dr. Kagumba here in Quincy on Thursday, but that is just a normal check-up. Our nurse coordinator with the Fetal Care Center in St. Louis, Shannon, told us before we left Barnes that our next trip would be a long day. Boy, was she ever right. A few days after we returned, she e-mailed us with the information. We have a 9 a.m. Fetal Echocardiagram and a follow-up with the cardiologist to discuss the results immediately after. I have no idea what the Echo will entail, haven't had time to research it yet. After that, we have an 11 o'clock appointment with Dr. Saito (Pediatric Surgeon) and a neonatologist. I am getting so confused on who everybody is and what their specialties mean and what jobs they will have in the future! We then have another ultrasound at 1:00 pm (which by the way.....I wish I could learn how to give Level II u/s on the side.....I would be rich!) and then finish off with the Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialist, Dr. Cahill, at 2:00 pm. We also hope to squeeze in a tour of Children's, the NICU, and all other areas we will be spending some time in while we are in St. Louis.

As before, they have been great in St. Louis. Our nurse coordinator has already been filling our spare time with plenty of reading material on long-term and affordable housing in St. Louis while we are there. Kelsea's due date is February 9th, and I am sure as we get closer, we will set a date for the C-Section. However, we have also talked about how strongly we feel that we want Hayden to be born in St. Louis so he is as close to the NICU as possible. It is nothing against Quincy or the medical facilities and personnel here, I/we just want the best for our little boy and I've promised him he will get it. Unfortunately, for this to happen, that probably means Kelsea will be heading to St. Louis well before her due date. When that happens, we don't know yet. I do know that Tucker is going to miss her!

Kelsea was able to go home this past weekend for Mia's (her niece) birthday party and Kim's (her sister) surprise birthday "celebration!" Although I missed her dearly, it was good for her to get away and spend some good quality time with her family. When she got home on Sunday, Kelsea met me at the K of C and stayed with me while I volunteered at Cadan's Carnival, a local event that raises money for CDH research. Rome and Tiffany lost their son several years ago to CDH and ever since then, they have ensured that the doctors at Children's in St. Louis are pusing forward raising awareness of CDH and making advances in its treatment. As I have mentioned before, God has ways of putting people and things just where He wants them so they can help fulfill His plan. Rome and Tiffany's doctor, Dr. Brad Warner, is the name that kept popping up when I first started doing research on Omphaloceles. He was in attendance Sunday afternoon for the event, however I left as he was just arriving. I was hoping to meet him, but as I sat there trying to sell raffle tickets (I did a horrible job by the way.....I think they could've done a better job if they would have just left the booth empty) I realized it wasn't about Kelsea and I and I didn't want to put msyelf in front of what the day was for. I also know that if God wants us to meet him, God will take care of it. It was a fun day and I was truly amazed at the turnout. I can't even begin to guess how many people were there throughout the three hours I was present. Well over a thousand I am sure though. It was nice to have Kelsea join me, even though she was tired, as she had just gotten off the train from DeKalb, and also talk to a former student who was helping me out earning some hours for Beta Club. However, she didn't know how to react when I bought her a rice krispie treat!

Basment is basically done. Windows were installed Friday, furniture is downstairs (although we still have some rearranging to do), the cat's now have a "tunnel" through the wall so they can get to their litter box and food without me worrying about the dog having some "treats" and no, I don't mean from the cat's food bowl....sick, sick dog! On a side note, it was interesting to read why dog's eat poop! Now to just finsih doing some rewiring in the storage/laundry area so I can move the shelves back in to place and move the rest of the "junk" from the garage back downstairs. Best part about everything is the fireplace we now have downstairs. It has already gotten a ton of use!

Friday, we saw our soccer season come to an end. It was definitely a tough ending to a great season. A team that, at the beginning of the season, I definitely did not have faith in. As the season neared the end, we saw our team get ranked nationally and in the state. However, rankings don't mean squat unless you perform. Well, our first game against Alton saw us trailing 1-0 midway through the first half. It took us 76 minutes and 35 seconds, but we finally "performed." The ending to our game was one of the craziest things I have ever witnessed in a soccer match. We had all but given up on our season when with 3:25 left in the game, we tied it up. Not 45 seconds later, we scored again and won 2-1 to advance to play Edwardsville, who 2 of the previous 3 seaons, has had our number. Friday night, we scored 20 seconds into the game and for the first 5-10 minutes, we thought we were going to roll over this team. However, it didn't end up that way, and just as the St. Louis Cardinals glorious posteason run is ending in the background as I type, our season came to an end with a 3-1 loss. I was sad to see it end, as I always am, however, that means I now have more time to spend at home with my wife and prepare for the arrival of our little Hayden!

One more thing, I FINALLY got to feel him kick tonight! Although very faint, I felt my boy move and it made his dad very proud!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012


Tonight's post is not witty nor funny and probably not very entertaining. It is just an update on our travels and our journey!

Today was an absolutely beautiful day, in more ways than just the weather. Kelsea and I went down to St. Louis last night because we had an 8 a.m. appointment at Barnes-Jewish and thought it would be nice to not have to leave at 5 in the morning to drive down!

The night started off with a wondeful meal at the Cheesecake Factory. I have never been there, but how can you go wrong with a name like that. The best part was taking 15 minutes to decide on what I would have for dessert. I was completely overwhelmed by the 30+ choices!

Our hotel room was extremely nice. The St. Louis Galleria Residence Inn by Marriott (which has been recently renovated) was well worth the $50 price we got it for on Priceline! The only negative side of the room was that we faced I-170, so it was a bit noisy. However, neither of us had trouble falling asleep!

We were excited for today because it meant we were able to take the next step on this journey that God has placed before us. The hardest part the past few weeks has been some of the unknowns. Well, today, several of those were answered. We started the day off (actaully all of our appointments were in one office) in the Center for Advanced Medicine in Barnes-Jewish hospital. We knew we would go through the same steps as we did at St. John's in Springfield, but were exactly sure what to expect. Ms. Hoskins was called back around 8:15 and I was introduced as the "father!" We first met with the Genetic Counselor, Erin, who was fabulous. I don't know what training/education a Genetic Counselor goes through, but she didn't look like she was more than a year out of college! It felt kind of weird to have somebody, who at least looked like they were quite a bit younger than me, giving me advice. However, she made Kelsea and I both extremely comfortable and talked to us on such a personal level. We definitely felt like she cared about us and Hayden and she was going to do everything in her power to ensure our doctors, as well as us, are as informed as possible. After going through a much more extensive family medical background than we did in Springfield and creating a family tree that covered the entire paper, and even after giving some medical advice for extended family members that I will pass on later, she took us back to the waiting room around 9:15.

Shortly after, Kim (who I believe is an Ultrasound Technician) and a 2nd year OB-GYN Resident (don't remember her name) who was learning how to use the Ultrasound machine (The Fetal Care Center is afilliated with Washington University) took us back to the ultrasound room. Both of these ladies were great as well. Kelsea had been filled-in on Kim by a friend who is familiar with her work and Kim was "warned" to watch out for us!

They walked us through the images and the measurements. Reconfirmed Hayden was going to get to keep his name boy showing us his boy parts again! She told us that he is in the 11th percentile based on his measurements and projected weight of 1 pound. However, this does not account for the Omphalocele and the organs that are contained in the Ompahlocele. A Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialist (MFM) came in and reviewed the ultrasound and took measurements of his own. For a few minutes, we did start to worry a little because he wasn't saying anything and when he would talk to Kim, he was whispering. However, once he was done, he told us he is a quiet talker and that eased some of our anxiety. We have had too many "quiet" ultrasounds!

After talking to Dr. Longman for a few minutes, he did tell us that the intestines, the liver, and part of the stomach is contained in the Omphalocele, which means it is a Large Omphalocele, just as Dr. Kagumba's office and Springfield had believed. Some positives from the ultrasound today show that Hayden does NOT have "sandal foot" and the measurements/pictures show very good signs that he does not have any of the three major chromosomal defects. However, as with everything else, it is only a picture and not 100% accurate. He then discussed possible heart defects. Springfield had noted that Hayden's heart was not positioned where most hearts should be and felt that CDH could be a possibility. CDH is anther disorder in which there is a hernia in the diaphragm which allows organs into the chest cavity. A local couple that I have known for a very long time had a son Cadan, who fought this for almost two weeks before being called home by God.

However, Dr. Longman, the MFM who looked at the ultrasound, doesn't believe this to be the case. However, as with everything else, things can change and we will be going back in 4 weeks for more ultrasounds, a fetal echo, and possible MRI.
After we left the ultrasound room at 10:45, we then met with the next MFM (Dr. Shanks) and the nurse from the Fetal Care Center of St. Louis who is going to be in charge of every step we make from here on out. I cannot even begin to explain what Dr. Shanks and Shannon did for us in the first 120 seconds of being in this next office. I have mentioned how everyone has been amazing so far, but these two were beyond amazing. They put every single fear Kelsea and I had to rest. He answered 7 of my 8 questions in the first two minutes, before I even had a chance to ask questions! It was sitting in this office, that I fianlly felt relief. His goal: Get us to 39 weeks and deliver (literally) to the neonatal team the biggest and healthiest boy possible!
We finally left his office around 11:45 armed with so much information. We discussed outcomes, delivery options, scenarios if Kelsea doesn't make it to 39 weeks and Hayden decides he's had enough of her and is ready for a bigger room, helicopter rides, etc.... Our minds were spinning, but they were spinning positive thoughts and big smiles!
We will go to Children's in St. Louis in four weeks for the Fetal Echo, then will meet with Pediatric Cardiologist to discuss results, and then meet with the Neonatologist and Pediatric Surgeon(s) to discuss plans for after Hayden joins us! We will continue to have doctor appointments with Kagumba here in town on the weeks in between our St. Louis visits.
It was so neat to see how caring everyone was and just to take in the sights and sounds of a place it seems we will become very familiar with. Even with our pain and sadness we have faced the past few weeks, we were reminded today on our way out that there is a reason God puts certain people in these situations. Seeing all the people around us, coming in and out of the elevators, doors, offices, parking garages, we were reminded that this is only a mountain and that there are many others around us who are dealing with just as difficult, if not more difficult situations. We are thankful that we have God on our side and continue to pray for those who do not that they will open their arms and their heart to Him.
We also decided to have a little fun on our way home and stop by the zoo. Kelsea thought that since we were only a few blocks away, it would be a good idea for "mummy' to take Hayden to the zoo for the first time!
 (I know....VERY cheesy!!). The Sea Lion exhibit is awesome! I think we could've stayed there for several hours watching them. Thanks Matt!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Saturday Morning Cartoons

Mornings have become my favorite time of day over the past 6-7 years. Saturday mornings, especially on a nice cold fall morning like today, take me back to Saturday game mornings, pulling up to Flinn Memorial Stadium, the anticipation of getting out and playing a match on the National High School Soccer and Football field of the Year! That field was its prime. I can still remember Senior Night against Sacred Heart. With about 7-8 mins to play, Peter C., their current coach had a 18 yard low shot off a corner that beat Wittler, our keeper. Luckily, I was on the post (probably wasn't supposed to be!!!) and cleared it off the line to keep it tied 0-0. Stratman was there and I remember he told me after the game I was probably in the goal and it probably should've been a goal for them.... Some things never change....glad to know he is at least consistent in his dishing out you know what!

With about 4 mins to play, Casey sent a ball from the right wing to the middle of the field to Ryan Thomas who was near midfield. He then sent it to a streaking Jason Allen in front of me on the left side near the 18 who took a touch and dipped it over the keeper for a 1-0 win. Talk about a finish. In those days, it was a miracle guys didn't get hurt when we celebrated. We would literally tackle the scorer and promptly have a dog pile of about 20 guys right in front of the bench!

Well, today is Senior Day for QHS Blue Devil soccer and I am not there to see them on their last game at Flinn. I am on my normal Saturday morning routine getting a headache and backache from the bumpy ride on the beautiful yellow bus. Many people watch cartoons on a Saturday morning, however, today, like most Saturday mornings in the fall, the two pictures included are the only thing I get to watch in the morning. I am going to miss watching the Seniors play today, but I have a feeling after next weekend, I am going to be able to see them play quite a bit more!

I have two games in Columbia, MO, today and I truly feel good things are to come.

In exactly 96 hours, Kelsea and I will be trying to find our way around Barnes-Jewish and even though we have thoughts on what we want to hear from the doctors, we are praying constantly that God's will, will be done. No matter what news we get on Wednesday, we both know He will be right there with us, carrying us forward.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Call Me???

I guess you don't get to 16-2-1 with your 13th straight victory and national rankings without having a little fun....

Great job by producer Eric Stratman!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Coincidence or God's Divine Plan?

As I mentioned on Facebook last night, our pastor and VERY dear friend Bob Cowman has been right by my side on my walk with God for the past three years. In the beginning, back to our summer mornings at Panera enjoying some wonderful coffee, he kept repeating something to me that hit me like a brick last night. He always said there are no accidents in life, everything happens for a reason. Everything that happens somehow falls into God's great plan. We would talk about how our love of the game of soccer brought us together, although it took me a few years to realize that it was more than just about soccer. He said it was not a coincidence that God's plan brought him from Ohio to Quincy, Illinois and it was no coincidence that he ended up on the same practice field, for the same team that I did. He told me there are NO coincidences in life with God. He stressed day after day that these things I used to call coincidences were far greater than that. These things that we find eery sometimes when they happen do not "just happen." They are a part of God's divine plan.

It had been awhile since I had thought about those conversations, but they all came flooding back last night. Kelsea had a follow-up with Dr. Kagumba in Quincy yesterday and we got to hear that beautiful heartbeat again. It was jumping around from 160 to 169....I think he was as nervous as we were! Dr. Kagumba went through the reports from Springfield and wanted to make sure we were all on the same page. One thing that caught us a little by surprise was when she told us that a baby with an Omphalocele this large stands a very good chance of not making it full term (we know Kelsea will have a planned C-Section early to try to prevent her from going through natural childbirth which carries many risks to our boy) but it was the first time we had heard there is a chance he could be stillborn. She said that the 2nd trimester is usually a good time for the baby, but once Kelsea enters into her third trimester, the chances of this occuring increase. Not what we wanted to hear, but at the same time, we want open communication and want to be armed with as much information as possible.

On the drive home, after we had to run a few more errands, I continuously thought I needed to hurry up, get home, and start doing more research on Large Omphaloceles and the risks/chances of stillbirths. However, my mind kept moving to the positive and I wanted to find stories of success! One story stuck out in my mind the last 7 minutes of the drive and I couldn't help myself. I know I shouldn't do it, but I pulled the story up on my phone. My sister Kelle had sent me a text message two weeks ago, after we got back from Springfield, with an amazing story about a couple in Texas who found out, almost two years ago exactly, that their unborn child had a large omphalocele. Kelle thought the crazy part was that their story was eerily similar to ours and she wanted to share it. I read the link she sent me. It was a story on ABC News Baby Born With Organs Outside Body Receives Rare Surgery and how they had given birth and gone with the "paint and wait" method. There was also a link to a blog she had started which I opened, but I didn't read a lot.

When I got home last night, I found the article again (actually there are articles all over the Internet regarding Kelly, her husband Cody, and baby Hayes) however this time, I finally went to the blog to read more. The more I read, the more tears started running down my cheeks. One thing that struck my sister Kelle was the similarity in names between my wife Kelsea, and Kelly. However, it didn't stop there. Kelly is a Special Education teacher, as is Kelsea! My sister (will leave her name out since it is Kelle also!!!) said in her e-mail, "Talk about God's work right there! I can't describe the feeling I have right now."

What little did she, and I know, that was only the beginning. As I continued to read last night (I started at the end and worked my way backwards since that is the way Blogger posts new posts and it is kind of hard to find the beginning!) I started to feel more and more hope. I felt God was sitting right next to me, leading my hands to the mouse to find the beginning. One thing I found out was that Kelsea and Kelly's blood type is the same and that the Omphalocele's in our two boys seem to be very similar in size. The next thing, which I already knew, but we haven't told the general public yet, is the names of our boys. I was wanting to wait until he was born (Kelsea wasn't...imagine that!!!), but I felt like I needed to share to explain just how God was working.

Hayden, our son's name is unbelievably close to Hayes. There I said it! It's out!

Hayden Owen Hoskins

Such a beautiful name!  Ok, on with the story....

It doesn't stop there. There was one last thing that literally brought me to my knees. After I finally found her first post from October 15, 2010, I could not believe my eyes when I saw the title of her first post. I wasn't sure what I was doing, and now I don't even think it was my doing, but I titled my first post "Omphalo what???" on 9/19/12. Kelly's first post.....  Omphalo-what?!?!

That put me over the edge. I yelled at Kelsea and could barely explain what I had read. It was such an amazing thing, I was completely overcome. Even if you do not have a relationship with Jesus, this is about as big of a sign as there is. This is like the huge spotlights that casinos have outside trying to draw customers in. It was God's way of saying, "Look at what I did here. Have faith in me. I will not lead you astray."

I wasn't sure what to do, but I felt God take control of my hands and start typing a letter to Kelly and Cody. I am not even sure what I wrote, but when I got a response last night at 9:04 p.m., my world became much brighter. I know God led us to this couple. It was not by chance. It was not a coincidence. It was all part of His Divine plan.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


Green Jerseys looked SWEET tonight!

Final 2 OT

15-2-1 on season!

Monday, October 1, 2012


We received some news this morning. It was some news that made myself, and even more importantly, Kelsea extremely happy. Last week, when we were in Springfield, instead of doing an amniocentesis, we opted for the Harmony prenatal test. Althought it is fairly new, this blood test is used to detect common fetal trisomies. Studies have shown it is greater than 99% accurate testing for Trisomy 21 and greater than 98% accurate testing for Trisomy 18. The Genetic Counselor called me this morning (we decided it was best to relay the information to me first, then I could pass it on to Kelsea) and told me the tests came back normal. I want to say we received some good news, but I feel like that is not what God wants me to say. The reason I say this is good news is because babies with Omphaloceles have a 25-40% chance of also having some type of chromosomal defect. As of right now,  it looks like our little boy will not have Trisomy 13, 18, or 21. However, I also know that the screenings are not 100% and we still may end up doing an amniocentesis after we go to St. Louis next week and there are still other possible defects that could be associated with the Omphalocele. We both feel like this is good news, but at the same time, that means that if he would have one of those, then that is bad news. This is not really how we feel because we know we are blessed and that with whatever God decides our baby boy should be born with or without, we will be happy. We know it is in His hands and that we just play a role in His bigger plan.

Over the past few days, I have been overcome with several different emotions and feelings. Saturday, I was overcome with joy because I finally (I didn't actually do it, my players did!!) won my first game of the season. As mentioned previously, it has been difficult because my teams have always had success at the lower level and it has been evident with our record. Saturday, I was able to be a part of one of the most exciting games I have ever coached. Although we lost to Jacksonville's JV team 3-2 on a goal with 30 seconds left to play, the way the boys played, the intensity, the heart, and the patience they had, not to mention two absolutely beautiful goals (actually five beautiful goals because Jacksonville's three goals were pretty spectacular themselves....not normal goals for a JV/Freshman game), I couldn't have been happier for the boys.

This morning, I was overcome with joy, extreme joy because I was able to hear God's work. Several years ago, I was lost. I was living life for myself and I was in a downward spiral. I didn't know it at the time, but I was miserable. I didn't know God, or I had lost contact with Him. Thankfully, he never left my side. He stayed right there, and as Bob Cowman told me many times, it was like I was drowning in a river and he kept throwing me a life preserver. Luckily, God continued to throw that life preserver and I finally saw it. His arm reaching out to me, pulling me to safety, has saved my life forever. Bob has told me that ignoring God when he is reaching out, speaking to us, turning our back on him is about as bad of a sin as you can commit. I look around me and I see people who need God's word in their life. I haven't pushed Him onto them, I have been waiting for the right time. However, I see that God is doing this for me. He is using Kelsea and I to reach out to others to show them His love and mercy and show them they are lost without Him. When we try to do it on our own, we fail...miserably. Been there. Done that. When we do it God's way, all things are possible. I was overcome with joy this morning because I see God working in other people. I have been listening to Bob the past three years, tell me with excitement in his eyes and his voice, that he sees God working in me. It is an amazing feeling to see him doing the same for others.

Tonight, I am not asking for prayers for Kelsea and I and for our little boy. I am asking for prayers for my loved ones who not necessarily don't know Jesus Christ, but who have strayed from Him and who may have turned their back on Him. I am asking God to continue pricking their hearts and give them hope that they may find a better life and realize that if they too put their faith and trust in the Lord, they can still be successful at life.

Tonight, I was overcome with amazement. We were greeted with many more cards of encouragement, scriptures, well wishes, and other gifts. It is hard to contain your emotions when you see how unselfish people are. I have always thought of myself as someone who would do anything for anybody, at any moment. However, I am quickly realizing I am nowhere close to being unselfish as I thought I was. Reading some of the personal notes, from New York, Louisiana, Iowa, and California to name a few, it almost brought me to my knees the "gifts" that others are willing to do for somebody they have never met. In a world as big as what we live in, many times it feels like we are all alone and so far from everybody else.

However, as somebody commented on here, from sea to sea, a band of angels, fellow QHS Blue Devils (angels and devils in the same sentence.... :)....) are coming together. It really makes you feel loved and as thought you are living in a small world. I just pray that God gives me the guidance to continue to spread His word and help others be overcome with God's love and mercy.

And Tuesday night, let's overcome those Raiders, fill the stands with green (yes, Green!) to support the Quincy Public Schools Foundation, and root on our Blue Devil Soccer to a 12th straight win!