January 2013

January 2013
Our Little Family of Three

Monday, December 29, 2008

A bone to pick

I have to get this off my chest.

It's not my style to swear. I think it's ugly and it sounds very uneducated. The comment, "...tell that bastard to get a job" was recently made. I didn't say those words. Someone else did. And my thoughts are over flowing. Without sounding too irritated I am going to share some of my MANY thoughts on comments like this.

Travis and I believe we are capable of whatever we set our minds to. The world is at our finger tips. We acknowledge and are extremely grateful for this. Since Travis' dream is to be an artist we are doing all we can to make that dream a reality. What's wrong with that?! Why not TRY?

My eyes have been opened since Travis graduated. It seems there's a very clear line between supporting someone and believing in someone. Those who support will typically ask how things are going and as soon as we turn away they shake their heads, roll their eyes, and whisper about how hard it is and how few make it in the industry.....blah, blah, blah.

So what does it mean to believe in someone? To believe in someone (whether this be Travis or someone else) means to ask, help, compliment (genuinely), and to look at their potential as a person in whatever it is they are trying to accomplish. Hardship and time never come into the picture because anything worth something takes time and is typically hard. Sacrifice is required. Fear has to be faced.

Just because something takes a long time to achieve or gain doesn't mean it's impossible. I find it interesting....do you know why the economy is the way it is? It's because we're all about instant gratification. Can't afford the home?! We'll get you in it anyways...the house payment will only be 75% of your monthly income! Groceries?!? Who needs to eat!? Gas? Who needs cars? Oh! But you already have a car payment...so that will put your debt to income ratio at....UNAFFORDABLE?!?! NO PROBLEM! You can be in your home and still be driving your luxury car tomorrow!

No wonder people are losing everything. It's heart breaking...why save up for something when you can have it now?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It almost seems like people feel the same way about careers as they do homes, cars, and name brand CRAP (Yes! CRAP!)!

I'm sorry but my heart is thumping. I have a lot of energy behind the idea that "if you can't have it now you won't ever have it". That idea is as foolish and thoughtless as the comment referenced above.

For you people out there who simply "support" my husband and his dreams - BACK OFF. It's our lives. Just because you don't dare strive for your dreams - for fear of failure - doesn't mean you have to push your mentality on us. I don't mean to offend, truly. But if this post is creating negative feelings...maybe you're who I am talking about.

Please stop with the concerned looks, the point-blank-punch-in-the-face comments, and especially the "joking" comments. The phrase "just kidding" is over used and abused. Sarcasm is 99% genuine. It hurts. It really hurts. So, stop it. Think before you say crap like that. We believe in ourselves...what's wrong with that? If you don't feel our view on life is realistic or if you feel like we're "wasting time", keep it to yourself. Quite frankly, we don't want to hear it because we don't care.

Now with that said I really feel like I need to express gratitude for those who not only support us but BELIEVE in us. Thank you. Thank you for believing in an incredible mans dreams and his determination to make them a reality. Thank you for caring. Thank you for taking the time to express words of genuine encouragement. Let me ask you a question, how long do you hold onto a genuine compliment - especially when the compliment has to do with something so hard and significant in your life? I dare say, uplifting words go a long ways.

I'm sorry if I've offended. I'm tired of sitting and watching my husband smile these sort of comments off (and know deep down that it's slicing his heart into pieces). I'm tired of people thinking they have the liberty, the right, the....obligation to tell Travis C-R-A-P like this. I believe in him. He believes in himself. WHAT'S WRONG WITH THAT?! It is very degrading and thoughtless to say stuff like this...even if you're joking.

As for the person who made this comment...if you read this I still think highly of you. I know you meant it as a joke, truly. I know your an honest, good, caring person. For those wondering who said this, don't ask. I'm not going to tell you. It doesn't matter. All that matters is that we learn to believe in people and keep degrading comments to ourselves - whether they're said while laughing or not. If you're going to post a comment on this update I ask that you THINK before writing and posting. I am not trying to degrade a specific person (we've gotten many comments from many people that are similar to this). I am trying to put an end to inconsiderate, thoughtless, and VERY un-funny (I know that's not a word but I don't care) comments. So, please don't do that which I'm trying to put an end to. Just learn from it.

Uhg...I guess this is the straw that broke the camel's back.

Just think. Please.

Trav will most likely be unhappy, to say the least, about this post. Please out of respect don't ask him questions either. Again, it doesn't matter who, only what. Seriously. Don't ask.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

They're here........

My goal was a 4.0 this semester. I didn't realize how hard it was going to be to work and take 17 credits at school. However, when I came to understand the level of difficulty - that didn't stop me from continuing to try my hardest. I honestly put everything into my classes. Even with working my hardest I had a distinct feeling I wasn't going to get the 4.0 I hoped for. I have decided not to beat myself up for this because I don't feel like I'm settling for mediocre. In my opinion, mediocre would be doing "just enough" to pass. I honestly feel like I went above and beyond and that is NOT mediocre. So with excitement and with gratitude I post my grades:

Astronomy - B+
Biology - C
Development of the Adolescent Student - A
English 2012 - A
Fundamentals of Music - B+
Aural Music Skills - B+
Choir - A
Private Vocal - A

I wasn't sure if I was going to pass Biology. That class was freaking hard. The teacher was amazing but he was difficult. I haven't known what to expect...I will gladly take what I've been given.

Oh-my-heck! I'm so relieved I passed all my classes!!!

Merry Christmas

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Nativity

I decided to a little research on The Nativity Story. I have come to love this story, especially this year with the arrival of my niece, Mercydez. There's some interesting stuff..I encourage you to take the time to read (and watch) as you may learn something new.

1) Jesus
"Mary and Joseph did not need to be taught the deep significance of the name Jesus. The Hebrew root from which it was derived, Jehoshua, means “Jehovah is salvation.” So the mission of Jehovah, soon to be named Jesus, was salvation, and His supreme destiny was to become the Savior of the world."

2) Swaddling Clothes
"Instead of those four words: “wrapped in swaddling clothes” in the English text, only one word is needed in the Greek New Testament. That word is sparganoo, which means to envelop a newborn child with special cloth, strips of which were passed from side to side. The cloth would probably bear unique family identification. That procedure was especially applicable to the birth of a firstborn son. You remember the announcement of an angel at the birth of Jesus: 'This shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger' (Luke 2:12). His wrappings surely would have been distinctive. "

3) The Inn
"In those days an inn was not like a Holiday Inn or a Bethlehem Marriott. A lodging place in that part of Asia had to provide accommodations for traveling caravans, including the people and their animals. Caravans stayed at what was then, as still is, known as a caravansary, or a khan.

Such a facility is typically rectangular in shape. It has a central courtyard for the animals that is surrounded by walled cubicles where the people rest. These quarters allowed guests to be elevated slightly above their animals, with open doorways so that owners could watch over their animals.

The Joseph Smith Translation of Luke 2:7 indicates that there was no room for them in the 'inns,' suggesting that all of the katalumas or cubicles of the caravansary were occupied."

4) The Manger
"What about the manger? The French word, manger means 'to eat.' A manger is a trough or an open box in a stable designed to hold feed, provender, or fodder for animals to eat. Elevated from the floor of the contaminated courtyard, a manger was probably the cleanest site available. Such a feeding trough became the cradle for our Lord!"

5) Mortality vs Immortality
"Jesus was born of an immortal Father and a mortal mother. From His immortal Father, Jesus inherited the power to live forever. From His mortal mother He inherited the fate of physical death.

Those unique attributes were essential for His mission to atone for the sins of all mankind. Thus Jesus the Christ was born to die (See The Book of Mormon, 3 Nephi 27:13–15). He died that we might live. He was born that all humankind could live beyond the grave. His Atonement was wrought in Gethsemane—where He sweat great drops of blood—and on Golgotha, or Calvary, where His body was lifted up upon a cross above the place of the skull, which signified death.

This infinite Atonement would release man from the infinitude of death (See The Book of Mormon, 2 Nephi 9:7). His Atonement made the Resurrection a reality and the gift of eternal life a possibility for all who would obey His teachings. His Atonement became the central act of all human history.

Our recollections of Christmas are enriched by these realities."
(All of the above quotes were taken from the following: Elder Russell M. Nelson, The Message: Christ the Savior Is Born, December 2006)

"We encounter Mary first in Nazareth of Galilee, perhaps sixteen years of age, being visited by Gabriel, the angelicministrant who is second only to Michael in the heavenly hierarchy. Gabriel announces to her: “Thou shalt have a son. His name shall be called Jesus. He shall be the Son of the Highest. He shall reign on the throne of his father David forever. You will be overshadowed by the power of the Holy Ghost. You will be the mother of the Son of God.” (See Luke 1:30–35.)

In my judgment, Mary is one of the greatest women who has ever lived on earth; the spirit daughter of God our Father. She was chosen to provide a body for his son, who was to be born after the manner of the flesh.

We see Mary travel from Nazareth in Galilee to Bethlehem in Judea to be at the place where the Son of God is destined to be born. We see her large with child, and after a long journey, arriving late at a wayside caravanserai, which consists of a central court in which animals are kept and of surrounding rooms to be occupied by travelers. The rooms in this oriental inn are all filled. We see her, with Joseph, bed down where the animals are tethered; and that night God sends his son into the world, angelic choirs attend, and angels’ voices are heard.

We see her through a long period of difficulty and testing and turmoil in life; she travels with Joseph into Egypt and no doubt stays with relatives or Jewish friends in that land. We see her back in Nazareth as the mother who influences the young and growing years of God’s son, who teaches him to crawl and to walk and to speak and to learn the Shema and the various other Jewish religious requirements which then prevailed. We see her at Cana of Galilee, having some control and influence at a wedding feast, inviting her son to do something that commenced his public ministry of miracles.

We see her, finally, standing before a cross when her son says to John, his beloved disciple, “Behold thy mother,” and to her, “Behold thy son.” (John 19:26, 27.) And John from that hour took her into his own home.

I think we see in Mary a pattern of piety and submission to the will of the Lord which is the perfect example for all women." (The above quote was taken from the following: Elder Bruce R. McConki, Our Sisters from the Beginning, June 1979)

It was common practice for a woman to be stoned to death if she was found pregnant and unmarried. Imagine the horror and fear Mary had to face when accepting the great call to be the Mother of the Son of God. What a noble woman. I can't help but to think of Joseph as well. There was plenty of opportunity to leave Mary to the hands of justice and focus on his own pride and (to begin with) his own mis-understandings. But, in spite of all of that, he stood by her. He stayed by her side, took care of her, loved her, and trusted her. What a noble, kind man.

I hope we can remember the true meaning of Christmas. The birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ, is so significant and important in our lives. Had he not been born he could not have died...atoning for our sins. I have been struck with the thought recently that He was born in the most humble of circumstances, He lived and served in the most humble of circumstances, and He died in the most humble of circumstances. Let us focus on and celebrate His birth, His life, and ultimately His great death.

If you haven't already, I encourage you to watch the video posted above. It is absolutely beautiful. It is a video of The Nativity. Dim the lights, turn up the volume, and watch it with your family! It's a great way to bring the true spirit of Christmas into your home (it's 5 1/2 minutes long).

Merry Christmas

Thursday, December 18, 2008

...it's over


It's over.

I survived my first semester back in five years. I took quite a heavy load and some pretty intense classes. I still don't know if I passed them all but I can say one thing, and do so with 100% honesty. That is that I truly tried my HARDEST in all my classes. I put in the study time, I showed up to class, I took notes, I asked questions, I read the text books...I worked hard. I just hope I pass. If I don't I think I'll spend my 25th birthday crying my eyes out on Travis' shoulders! No, not really. But I will be incredibly discouraged. I have one class in mind, biology. No offense to all the biology guru's out there, but I hate biology. I would rather hear a person sing "off" for an entire song than sit through a biology class. Uhg.

Anyway, I took my last two finals this morning. I've been preparing for quite a while for these finals so the relief I'm feeling is rather large. (ANOTHER BIG SIGH OF RELIEF)

Now I can look forward to a Merry Christmas! It's funny because I've had to keep telling people, "...After the 18th of December I can ______" Typically the blank space is filled with items such as wrapping presents, baking cookies, playing games, watching movies, shopping, etc. Well, guys! Let's wrap presents, let's bake cookies, let's play games...watch movies and go shopping! It's over!


Monday, December 15, 2008


I have a few minutes and thought I'd take advantage of them and post some of my thoughts. I have had many of them recently. I feel like my brain has been in training for this enormous marathon. With that training comes a lot of excerize and preparation. I'm pooped. But it's a good "pooped".

I have a friend I've been thinking about for some time now. I just met her this semester. Her name is Marj. It's so interesting because it feels like I've known her for a long time - long before now. I have talked to my mom about her a lot. She is an inspiring woman who sees the best in people. She believes in people too...genuinely believes everyone has great potential. She also has a very honest spirit about her. She doesn't hold back who she is, what she believes, or her ways of thinking. She's comfortable with who she is. And the great thing is, is that with this understanding of who she is she only becomes better. She allows those around her to be who they are. She is positive in all respects. Not once has she used her knowledge, experiences, or status to intimidate, degrade, or offend. She is innocent of all negativity. She's awesome.

Marj and I have had some good conversations. We seem to understand one another on a totally different level too. She gets me and I feel, to a certain degree, I get her. We have had opportunities to share sacred things with one another...to share some funny stories...and typically when we're done visiting we end things with a hug. I've thought about this too. It seems like people tend to give hugs just because they have to. Not always, but generally speaking, people give what I like to call "polite hugs". Marj doesn't. When she hugs you she means it. When she expresses her thoughts and feelings, she means it. She's totally genuine.

This past Saturday I was able to express my love and passion for music through a presentation in class with Marj. The entire time I was speaking Marj was just crying. SHE GETS IT! She understands my passion. She understands music. jShe understands the power behind a note. She understands me! While I was up giving my presentation I had to force myself not to look at Marj because I KNEW I'd start crying as well. Like I said, we've shared some sacred things. These things have one thing (among others) in common, that is music.

I am so sad at the thought of not seeing Marj on a regular basis. Her hugs and words of comfort, advise, and encouragement have lifted me. I feel I am a better person because of her. I feel I believe in myself and my writing abilities because of her. I feel like I am capable of so much more BECAUSE OF HER. There are only a few other people in my life who have had such an influence...and those people know who they are. They are my inspirations. Now I am fortunate enough to have met and include Marj on my list of truly inspirational people.

I'm sure some of you are questioning who this woman is. Let me tell you a little about Marj. Marj is my English teacher at UVU. Marj married in her later years (by Utah standards!) and became the mother of her husbands children. She never had her own children, as far as I'm aware, but I don't question her love for her "step-children" to be any less passionate or pure than had she given birth to them. Marj was adopted and has other adopted siblings, as her mother wasn't able to have children. She doesn't seem to be angry about her situation. If anything she comes off as grateful and happy. Marj has a deep passion for writing. Not just writing, but passionate, personal, and pure writing (the same qualities Mozart looked for in music)! But in her passion for writing she expresses herself equally through word. She holds herself to the same standards she holds her students and she doesn't disappoint. Not even a little.

Marj, if you happen to read this I hope you know how much I value you as a friend. I told you Saturday how inspirational you are. I meant it. You have offered me an new point of view. You have opened many doors for me. You have only made me better. Thank you for an incredible semester. I will MISS your class...didn't we have a great class??!! Peter, Jason, Jessica, Linda, Zack....I could go on and on.

You know, I wonder if we knew each other before this life. I feel like we did...and I know I can say that without freaking you out because you know what I'm saying. ;) God bless you and your wonderful family!

I hope you have a beautiful Christmas holiday. I hope you remember how incredible you are, how inspirational you are, how warm and welcoming you are, how much you offer to your students. I have NEVER had a teacher like you in my life. I only hope I can do you a service by being more like you with those I associate with, whether that be professionally, personally, or randomly.

I sincerely love you and wish you the best.


*Even with this post I still feel I haven't done Marj justice...she is so deserving. What an elect lady. Marj, maybe we could do lunch sometime!?!!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Justified :)

It's been a while, I know. I feel like every other post I'm reassuring everyone we're still alive and kicking. It's been a busy few weeks, to say the least, and now with finals approaching I'm growing fond of the idea of taking an eternal nap. :) School has been kicking my trash! But I still love it. I wouldn't be anywhere else. I've already registered for classes next semester and can't wait to dive in - well I guess I can at this point. I just want to get some sleep.

So a quick list of reasons why I feel justified for disappearing for so long:

1) Without making light of the situation in the least I was and still am exhausted from the incident in October. Mercydez is my life. She is my sweetie. That nearly took me and I'm doing my best to continue recovering.

2) We moved AGAIN! We are now living with my parents and are slowly adjusting to the newness of it all. I had forgotten how quickly hot water can disappear, how often the washer and dryer seem to be full, and how quickly dishes pile up in the kitchen! There is now a total of ten people living at my parents (including our adorable Mercydez) and it's been an adventure. My parents and siblings are awesome so I'm not worried in the least. It'll be a party!

3) We re-did my parents basement before, during, and...well, we're STILL working on it. Our bathroom has a cement floor (we've bought tile just haven't found the time to lay it) and a hole between the bathtub and toilet....hard to imagine. But it is what it is. We're hoping with the holiday break we'll be able to finish up the bathroom. That would be AMAZING!

4) On top of this being my first semester back in school and taking 17 credits I am working. Let me just say HOLY CRAP! Homework has been intense, tests have nearly caused me to collapse in frustration (I swear, no matter how many hours I put into studying I will NEVER get an A), and being required to perform solos in class (since I'm a vocal music major - which is a performing art - I am required to sing regularly in class) which almost make me hyperventilate, it's no wonder I haven't found time to post! ;) AND ON TOP OF ALL THAT I WORK! It's worth it though. I love being back. Learning, growing, and improving...nothing beats it.

No but seriously, about the performing thing. The first time I performed my heart was thumping so hard I could barely breathe. I had to, literally, go in the women's bathroom, sit in a stall, and remind myself to breathe. As I as doing this I was reassuring myself I could do it. I'm determined to overcome this fear I have...I wasn't like this growing up. I don't know why I am now.

5) The stress of figuring out how we're going to survive w/such a small income (now that I'm part time and Trav is still working on his business) has thrown me through the loop. I HATE MONEY! Uhg. Even though I don't have to go anywhere physically, I'm there mentally and emotionally and it's exhausting.

On top of losing money because of going part time we also lost our insurance. So I've been meeting, calling, and following up with many people. We finally have insurance but my ideas on insurance have only been confirmed through all this. My belief is this: THE FREAKIN' INSURANCE COMPANIES RULE THE WORLD. They can deny anyone and anything they want and there's nothing you or I can do about it...even though we're paying a pretty penny for coverage. Yes, there's A LOT of heat behind this.

Shall I stop or would you like more? ;) For your sake and mine I'll stop. Unfortunately finals are taking place these next two weeks so I probably won't get to posting another update until after. I'll try though.

Trav has been busy too. In fact, this week is the first time he's been able to TOUCH his art since the beginning of November. For the last month he has been painting my parents house, packing, loading, unpacking, touching up, and setting up. His poor back was hurting him pretty bad a few weeks ago. He could barely stand from all the kneeling, lifting, carrying, etc.

He's now back in his happy place. ;) He's set up his study area and I must say it looks pretty good. I'm relieved he's finally able to go back to work. He loves what he does and I'm grateful for that. He's such a good guy. I have only fallen more in love with him as I've watched him the last few weeks. His determination to get things done - and done right - is awesome. He's a VERY hard worker. I love him so much.

So, without any pictures and with a whole lot of emotion I will now post this update. I hope I didn't come off as complaining or upset. I'm not. Both Travis and I are happy. Truly happy. We're just SUPER busy. My intent was to portray that and only that.

Life is intense right now but it sure is good.


Trav & Adrienne

**I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving. Ours was wonderful! I'll blog more about the events of the past when I have more than ten minutes to pluck away at the computer. There's a lot to catch up on. However, I will say that just because I haven't had time to blog (which, believe it or not, I DO feel guilty about it being 5 weeks since my last) doesn't mean I haven't been staying up to date with everyone else!! Keep the posts comin'!