Phoenix, AZ to Camp Verde, AZ

Stop #15
Miles driven this leg: 137
Total miles driven: 4601
States visited: 10

I woke up to the best birthday surprise. Laurie and Dan and the boys blew up balloons and scattered them around her house. Laurie went to the bakery to get delicious cinnamon rolls and bakery-style pop-tarts and this is what I walked into after boy snuggles and coffee delivery in bed. I got some thoughtful gifts such as oils geared specifically toward healing shingles (thanks, Laurie!) and this thoughtful little piece of wall art from the boys.

Buddy was so happy to get some puppy time with Laurie's dog Georgia. It was so cute watching them play! They tired each other out quickly, especially in the crazy heat.

I love this picture because it's the first photo taken of my friend Laurie and me in a VERY long time, but also because Sammy took it! I'm telling you, he's got the creative eye!

On our way out of Phoenix we stopped at a fellow heart family's house north of the city. Michelle has been a huge source of comfort and prayer for us over the years. We had met in person once before, but I feel like I have known her and her family forever. They so kindly welcomed us into their home, fed us lunch and a birthday cake, caught up, hugged, prayed and they sent us off feeling full and loved. We were so happy to get time with Phoenix friends!

While the first part of the day was fabulous, the last part wasn't what I would call the most ideal period of time. Nothing catastrophic happened and while we are grateful for that, we were basically stuck in an RV that wouldn't cool down yet was cooler than outside temps. We were HOT, tired and irritable. My ridiculous shingles had periods of really not feeling well and the campground we landed at was not conducive for getting outside. We could NOT get Buddy cooled down and had a stretch of time when we were genuinely worried about him, as we tucked bags of ice under his belly.

The desert contains beauty for sure and people we love, but it has depleted us. We are all ok and thankful for the blessings from this morning. Buddy has cooled off, our RV is finally starting to cool, the boys are sleeping soundly and we are all together! I just know that after a good night of sleep we will be feeling so much better in the morning!