Wednesday, December 17, 2008

7 Years

It's 12:29 AM here early on the morning of December 18th. Today, in about 11 hours, Travis and I will have been married for seven years. SEVEN YEARS!!! Time goes by so fast. When I think about when we were first married, I'm amazed we didn't feel like strangers. I have learned so much more about him, and have come to love him so much more since then. When I think of how little time seven years is compared to eternity, I have to admit it's fun to think about. I get to spend FOREVER with this man who makes me laugh and makes me feel like I am something special. Who never intentionally hurts me, and cries when he accidentally does. Who is committed to the gospel and inspires me to be better. Who tells me daily that I am awesome, even when I'm at my worst. Who loves my children almost as much as I do. And most important, who makes me smile and laugh every single time I am with him. I could list a million reason why I love him and make everyone barf, but I'll just say this - it doesn't get much better than him. How did I get so freaking lucky?

So, in order to celebrate year seven, we are going to put all four of us in the car and drive 12 hours to Phoenix to visit Trav's sister and my brother. Awesome celebration. But he's promised to take me out to dinner somewhere fun and expensive, so I'll be happy once I'm fed:).

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

What Do You Think?

Is he cute? Still a little alien-ish? No need to comment on how his nose is his dad's - the tech assured us that it is just baby nose. Still struggling with a name. But we always do. Jaxon likes Surfer and Travis calls him Parker Magic Marker. And no, Parker is not one of our possible names. My husband is just weird. Wish I could get some real name-picking help around here.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Super Post

It feels like it's been forever, but in reality it's only been two weeks. As I go through my camera, I found two main themes for our lives over the past few weeks.

First, November 22, 2008. Brylee's first birthday party, also known as the same day Utah played (or stomped on) BYU. We combined the two events, although I'm pretty sure it's not a good idea to watch the game with fans of the opposite team. Especially when your team is winning.

I woke up to pancakes in the shape of the letter U. Trav was a little out of control.
Then we moved to Aunt Amy's house in NSL for the birthday party. The Fathead (that's for you Jody) wasn't sure how she felt about birthday presents. Her mom's a babe though.
She definitely knew she did not like the birthday cake adventure.
We snuck her into some red pajamas when her daddy wasn't looking so she could watch the game with uncle Travey.
Second comes Thanksgiving. Every other year we travel to St. George to spend Thanksgiving with Trav's EXTENDED family. That means aunts and uncles and grandma and granddad from his dad's side. It always seems like such a hassle, and then always turns out to be the best trip. This year we decided to forego the whole hotel idea, and we rented a condo for the Wellmans, Grammy and the boys and us. We had such a good time. I forgot the camera for most of our adventures, but here are a few.

Grammy spent mucho time reading to the kids. They giggled and laughed and had a great time.
We stayed up late playing games. This picture was of us playing Balderdash. I'm pretty sure I almost laughed myself into labor. Balderdash should not be that fun. I don't think I could ever play it with anyone who wasn't as funny as these people.

We had a rockin' birthday party for Melanie on Saturday night. Obviously, we made the mistake of leaving Jeff in charge of decorations.
Jamey took some annoying pictures of himself with my camera. I'll post this to teach him a lesson.
Chandler and Jax started a shirtless band with Spongebob's hands and feet.
Travis gave Melanie her present, which turned out to be....
A stuffed animal version of himself.
We had a Spongebob pinata. Because Dr. Wellman is weird.
And Melanie beat Jeff up with a mop handle.
Then she blew out her candles on her birthday pie. Jeff bought trick candles, and Blakey brought them to her and told her she was going to be blowing forever. Kind of gave away the trick. Mel, might be my favorite picture of you ever.
We also spent lots of time at a really cool park just down the street. There were always about a thousand people there, and there was still plenty of room for all of us.
Good job Dad! You almost climbed the tiny wall as fast as Jaxon did.
These two are the best of friends. This was right before Jax fell off the rock wall I think. Oops.
Uncle Jamey ate Cody. Check out Jeff climbing the wall in the background.
Cody entertained me for hours on end.
Emory cried a lot. And yes, Travis is a hairy gorilla.
We also ate an awesome dinner at the hotel with the entire family, played games with half the Smart family (I always feel weird saying that, like the other half isn't smart), rocked everyone at our Family Jeopardy playing skills, ate at the Pizza Factory (yummy), missed the Strouds and the Magnussons, shopped at the outlets on Black Friday, looked for critters, and gave thanks for every member of our family and all of our blessings. Thanksgiving was good this year.

I have to say that this year I am very thankful that my husband has a steady job that isn't affected by the economy. We have good benefits and don't have to worry about whether or not he will be employed next week. In these crazy times, I'm so grateful that Heavenly Father blessed us with his job. Especially because I'm too lazy to work.

I am also thankful for my family. Every single one of you, whether distantly related or close. From my kids and husband to my aunts and uncles in law and second cousins once removed, you all make my life happier. Spending time with you gives me something to look forward to. Laughing with you and receiving thank you cards from you makes each holiday a little brighter. Family rocks.

Now for a funny moment. Jaxon always jumps on Travis when he's not looking, and Travis has asked him a thousand times to stop, but he keeps doing it. So one Saturday I heard Travis bugging Jaxon back in his room after Jaxon asked him to stop teasing him. As soon as they came out in the living room, Jaxon jumped on him. As Travis got mad, I reminded him that he had been bothering Jaxon about something and that he had asked him to stop. So they both went to time out. And yes, Travis had to stay in there for 29 minutes. Old man.

One last thing I am grateful for is my home. Here is a sunset from the other night off our back deck. We live in a beautiful place, and so often I look around and am reminded of all that our Heavenly Father created to make our lives prettier places.

24 weeks tomorrow and counting. I can't wait for this baby to come - is this the longest time period of my life or what???

Thursday, November 20, 2008


You should all try to catch Travis tomorrow morning on ABC 4 News at 6 AM to hear him and Rocky discuss their bet about the Utah/BYU game. So funny.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

It's Almost Christmas

So I've busted out the good old Christmas music. Along with the classic *NSYNC "Home for Christmas" album, The Forgotten Carols, Sarah McLachlan and the Christmas Box CD, there is an Amy Grant song that has really been resonating with me. Possibly because I am pregnant, but there is a line that makes me stop and think every time.

"Do you wonder, as you watch my face,
If a wiser one should have had my place?
But I offer all I am,
For the mercy of your plan."

Mary truly sacrificed the ultimate of all sacrifices. She gave her son, her CHILD. She watched him suffer and die. She watched him be spit on and mocked. She really was willing to sacrifice all she was and all she had for the plan. Would I do the same? I don't know if I could. I hope it is never asked of me. I have such respect for her. Respect sounds like such a stupid word. I am in absolute awe of her. Thinking of how she must have felt. I hope one day to be able to tell her how inspiring she is. What an incredible person I think she must have been. And Joseph. Such an incredible story in so many different ways. I'm so glad I was raised with it and that I believe in it. I think Heavenly Father must have immense respect for women, based on the trials they have been handed throughout the history of the church. I also thinks He expects us to only speak of women with the utmost respect.

As I feel this new baby kick around inside of me, I think of my children, and how I feel about them. I don't know that I could watch the things she had to watch during Christ's short years on earth. I don't know that I could live through that. But how grateful am I that someone could? That someone stepped up for the call, and gave the ultimate sacrifice for the gospel.

I believe with all my heart that she was someone very very special. I hope I can live up to being a fraction of the mother and servant that she was. And one day, I really hope to meet her.

"And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn." Luke 2:7

Monday, November 10, 2008

It's Getting Cold!

Finally, I feel like we're in Utah. We are some of those annoying people who love the winter and the cold. The other day the kids wanted to play outside, so I got them all bundled up and off they went. They were a little disappointed when they found out mom likes to experience the cold from INSIDE the house, but they got over it. Emory is nuts.
And tonight we had Family Night. We told the kids we'd go buy them a few new puzzles because they love them and have been doing their dinosaur ones for about eight months now, and then we got ice cream and came home and worked on them. Trav tried to help Jaxon put his impossible Spiderman puzzle together, and this is how Emory ended up. She gets bored fast.
And here's the little orphan child. She picks her own pajamas, I promise.This is how Jaxon spends 99% of his life. In head stand form. I have to tell him all the time that he shouldn't do head stands on the back of the booth in a restaurant. Today I got him out of the tub and told him to go get dressed, and found him naked in his room doing headstands. I guess he likes gymnastics though.
We left the kids with a sitter the other night and went out to dinner, and when we got home this is how we found Emory. I guess we forgot to tell the sitter to remove the princess dress before she went to bed.
Life is good here - not much to report. Just looking forward to the holidays and the end of Trav's first semester in his PhD program. We think it may take us awhile because he may have to take a semester off after each one he completes. Who wants to be in school at 30? Not me. But we are heading to St. George for Thanksgiving and looking forward to seeing family, and after that only two weeks before finals. Our schedules revolve around the university calendar around here.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Katie Says...

Go Utah! Fun game tonight.

Dr. Bierer Says.....

It's still a boy! Phew. We were a little worried it was going to change again. But I saw it for myself this time. Yay! I can't wait to have another baby!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

We had a really sh**ty week last week. Can I say that? Of course I can, it's my blog. But just in case there's any doubt, it was a sucky, horrible, wish it never happened week.

It started on Wednesday when we learned that my Grandpa Burke was diagnosed with prostate cancer. This in and of itself wasn't too bad because prostate cancer has a low mortality rate. We were concerned most with whether or not it had spread to his bones, but within a few days he had a scan, and it would appear they caught it in time. So after about four months of therapy and radiation, he should be cancer free and fine. The four days in between the news of the cancer and the news of the scan were not fun ones.

Anyone who knows me knows how much I love this man. I was born on his 51st birthday, and he is a very special man. He has dedicated his life to the gospel. His favorite calling in the church is "Reverence Ranger" in the primary. I love him. We've celebrated our birthday in Nauvoo and in Toronto while he was serving missions. We've never been apart on our birthday, and I'm grateful we're going to have at least a few more.

Then on Friday we received the news of Trav's uncle. It was sudden and shocking and very very sad. We spent a few days over the past week with his family in Sandy. They are strong and faithful, but still suffering. It doesn't feel right and is so very sad. It also kicks Travis back to memories of when his dad died, which adds a whole new element to the sadness. We went to the viewing on Tuesday night and attended the funeral on Wednesday. It was one of the most uplifting and also saddest meetings I have attended. He was a good man, and the common theme through the entire week was his ability to make everyone feel important to him. Gordon, we will miss you so much.

After such an emotionally exhausting day, Trav got some much needed cuddle time with the little princess, who was running a fever. I think it was a small blessing so she could comfort her daddy.
But on top of all the bad news, we also had some good things happen. All three of Trav's sisters flew in for the family events, and two of them brought their kids. We went to the Air Force Museum in Roy (which I haven't been to since fifth grade) and the kids had a great time.

These boys had such a great time. This was one of the huge blessings of everything. They are never all together. Here's Carter, Jaxon, Blake and Cody.
And cute Peyton in the pilot's chair. After this, my camera died, so we'll have to wait for Mel's awesome photography skills.
We also went to the Kangaroo Zoo in Bountiful early Wednesday before all the bad news started for Morgan's (my cousin) birthday. The kids had a great time. My aunt rocks.
My kids were really cute and fun until about six that night. Then the little one melted down and almost killed me. But it was fun while it lasted.And then of course we had Halloween. We celebrated first at Grandma's Halloween party at work which was so cute and fun.
Here's Belle and Captain America. This was the only two minutes during which he wore his mask.
This makes me smile.
Crazy Amy was Juno for Halloween. She makes me giggle. She made me pee on a pregnancy test for her. Sick.
We also celebrated Grandpa Kurt's 53rd birthday on Halloween. He's getting old. But we love him.
Little crap is so dang cute.
Travis and I have pictures from our wedding hanging over our bed. The other day I came out of the bathroom feeling sad, and was overwhelmed by how grateful I am that we are sealed together for eternity. Like someone told Rosemary (Gordon's wife) at the funeral, he is your eternal companion and NOTHING can change that. I am so grateful for that knowledge, and that this man chose me, and made it a priority to get to the temple.

Yes, these are scanned pictures, so the quality is not great. We got married a few years before everything went digital. And yes, I was blond at one point and we did at one time look this young.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Gordon Smart

Trav's uncle passed away yesterday morning. He is a 57 year old father of five and grandfather of one. He died of a massive heart attack out of the blue. He was a good man and was loved by everyone who knew him. This was a man who sent me a huge box of wafer cookies for my birthday last year when I mentioned in passing that I liked them. He could make you laugh at any time. He had the best heart and you could feel that when you were around him. He will be missed so much by all of us. And to his family, we love you all. So much. I've said it once and I'll keep saying it, this is one of the best families to belong to.

Life is way too short. And it's over way too fast for some people. We love you Gordon, and we miss you already.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Love These People

That sounds like I just said I love myself doesn't it?

Well, it was free family picture time again. I have two professional photographers in the fam - my sister-in-law Melanie and my aunt Amy. So whenever we can we take advantage of them. Here they are.