Monday, September 29, 2014

Virginia


Derek and Becca welcomed sweet little Meredith Ellen Theurer to their family on September 14th. Becca had something called Placenta Previa, and after a scare was put on bed rest in the hospital for 7 weeks before Meredith was delivered. Their moms had been switching off weeks to go to Virginia and help out with the other two kids, Hannah and Jack, while Becca was in the hospital. Jaxon and I were able to fly out to be with Hannah and Jack while Becca was still in the hospital and then to hopefully help a little bit with the transition home. I felt so lucky to be able to help in a small way and to hold and see the new sweet baby. It was such a miracle that Meredith was so big and healthy and that her and Becca were able to come home only two days after her C-section. I couldn't help but get a little teary eyed when Becca surprised Hannah and Jack at the front door with their new baby sister. It had been a long two months for their family and it was a true blessing and answer to prayers now that mom  was finally home with her healthy little girl.

Meredith Ellen Theurer

I was really nervous about flying alone with Jaxon, but I was surprised both times flying by the kindness of strangers around me. People offered to watch him if I needed to use the restroom, gave him their treats, or played games with him to keep him happy. Their understanding and kindness meant so much to me because I was so worried I would annoy the people around us.



Brad and I realized that this was the longest we have ever been away from each other. We missed each other but he spent extra hours studying, and taking care of three kids is busy work. Luckily Jack and Jaxon got along great, and Hannah is a good helper. Becca impressed me with how quick she was able to jump back into life. I look up to her for being the patient and loving mother of her three little ones. Hannah and Jack are smart and polite kids and that is a big reflection of their parents. I enjoyed visiting with both Derek and Becca at night and snuggling with little Meredith after the kids went to bed. The last day we were there I was feeling pretty sick and so Derek took the three kids to the zoo all by himself! Jaxon usually isn't comfortable around men, but he loved his uncle Derek. One time he even cried when Derek took Jack outside and left him with me ... which made me think that I'm pretty sure he thought Derek was some strange version of his dad the whole week. It will be interesting to see how he acts in a few months when we see them again. We are excited to go back in November to spend Thanksgiving with the whole family!
I love this picture of the boys wrestling and laughing with each other. They are going to be good buddies growing up.
Last night marshmallow roast with the whole family

Thursday, September 25, 2014

10 months


My baby is turning into a toddler. I can't believe how big and grown up he is getting. My mother-in-law keeps a wall of grandkids pictures in her house and she asked for an updated picture of Jaxon. This was the perfect opportunity for me to try out a photo shoot of my little guy. It wasn't as easy as I thought it would be in my head. My sister -in-law, Megan (who is a photographer), gave me the advice to just take tons of pictures and you will be bound to have some good ones. There was crying, playing in dirt, and eating dirt, but it was fun and I loved looking through and seeing all the cute pics of my little man. 












 Here is whats new with Jax

- Finally has teeth. You can't see them that well in the picture but he broke his first tooth about two weeks ago and is working on 3 more right now.

- Started growing some hair on his blond little head.

- Still loves to eat (dont think this will ever change). Some of the usual foods he likes are bananas, watermelon, peaches, sweet potatoes, rice, chicken, mac n cheese, graham crackers, rice cereal, apple sauce, yogurt, spaghetti, and black beans.

- Starts to dance (bounce/wave hands) when he hears music.

- Loves watching and playing with older kids.

- Does lots of talking/babbling. If you sit and talk to him he will have conversations with you, it is the funniest thing.

- Definitely is a mommas boy, and gets worried whenever I leave the room.

- Likes to be goofy with dad. Brad can always get him to laugh more than I can.

- We've caught him standing on his own when he is distracted, but won't/doesn't like to when we try to make him.

-He does really well pushing his walker around and walking one handed along furniture, but is still a pro crawler around the house.

- Gets into everything. He's a quick one and if I don't watch him closely he has a few favorite activities: eating dirt from plant, taking all dvd's off shelf, unrolling toilet paper, flushing toilet, and pulling out garbage sacks.

He is so fun and I love the stage he is at right now. It is fun to watch him get determined and figure something out. He loves to explore and figure out the world around him. I love my little boy and feel lucky to get to spend each day with him!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Our New Lives

So now that I am pretty much over the shock of moving I thought I would update on our lives. I am always talking about Jaxon, so here is the low-down on what Brad and I are up to.

Brad
School started July 1st. There are about 100 students in Brads dental class. He is one of 10 from out of state, 4 that are LDS, around 8 that are married, and he is currently the only Dad. A lot of the students know him as the "guy with the baby." I'm sure by the end of 4 years that won't be the case, but he is proud of his little family. It cracked me up when at one of the social events in the first week another student said.. "Wait, you've been married 3 years..you got married while you were in college?" haha crazy right?

Brad works hard to put in good study hours at school so he can be with us when he is home. He leaves around 6:00 - 6:30 most mornings, and is home around 5:30-6:00 or sometimes later. When he gets home he plays with Jaxon so I can finish up dinner. We switch off from night to night who does the dishes and who plays with Jaxon after we eat. One of the things I love about our new apartment is that the kitchen and living room are connected so you can talk to each other while you cook or do dishes. At about 7:15 one of us will give Jaxon a bath while the other one picks up and gets his pajamas and bottle ready. After his bath we read scriptures, feed him, and put him to bed. Brad and I usually have a treat (Bluebell ice cream!) and watch an episode of something together or just hang out and then he studies until we go to bed. He's been going in for 4-5 hours on Saturdays to get some extra study time and then Sundays we get him all to ourselves..no studying :). Probably doesn't sound too bad to most people who had to work and be adults right when they got married. We used to see each other throughout the day so its been an adjustment.

I have always been impressed with Brad's study habits. He makes and keeps study goals for each class, week and day that he tries to accomplish and check off so he stays on track. There have been a few tests so far and he has done really well, scoring above or right around the average. One of the things he's realized since being here is that he received a great undergraduate education at Utah State that has prepared him well for dental school. 

Brad has never exactly been "Mr. Social", but he has a few friends in his class that he study's with and some upper classman that have been good mentors and helped him out with any questions he has. He's been going once or twice a week to play basketball or work out with other dental students or some of the medical and optometry students in our ward. The two of us have been doing a get fit challenge with each other and recording our weights each week.

I recently started cutting Brads hair. He got in his mind somewhere that he wasn't going to pay for a haircut while we are in dental school. Well, thats all fine and dandy, but Brad is a particular person. Not to mention has some of the thickest hair ever, and I am definitely not a hair dresser. The first two times did not go well and ended in me swearing to never cut his hair again. Well after another month he talked me into it, and after many YouTube vidoes and some dry runs we were both pretty happy about how it turned out. Hopefully it gets better, but if you are wondering about his hair in pictures, at least now you know. Then this last Saturday I had him highlight my hair. Yes...we bought a 7 dollar kit from the store and he did my hair. Haha..... When I told some other mom's what I was planning they thought I was crazy, but he did a good job. Well, at least good enough to get me through until our next visit to Utah. ;)

Brad says his favorite part of the day is when he opens the door and Jaxon speed crawls over to him. Brad has said to me more than once that he feels lucky to be one of the students that is able to come home after a long day to his wife and family. Obviously, this makes me happy, I am lucky to have such a dedicated and hard working husband.

Nicole
Motherhood is a funny thing. I re-wind toilet paper, clean up scattered pantry items, and even open a brand new package of graham crackers right off the shelf in Wal-mart. It is in these moments that I think... "really ..really... this is my life". Then, he snuggles with me on the couch before bed-time, giggles at the most random things, and lights up when he sees me come in his room after a nap. It is in these sweet moments that I realize I have the best job ever.

Our ward is great! It has been fun getting to know other couples who are going through school and having some of the same experiences as us right now. There are quite a few moms that live around us and there is always something to do. I joined a running group that meets three times a week. We take shifts watching the kids and running. It's been good to get me out of the house and working out. Plus, Jaxon gets to play with new toys and other kids.  On Mondays we go to the Library for baby time, where they sing songs and read books. On Fridays each week there's a mom's group that either meets at a park or pool, and then there is book club once a month, and even girls night every once in a while after the kids are in bed.

One of my favorite things that I have been able to be a part of since we have been here is going out with the missionaries. We had the sisters over to eat one of the first weeks we were here and Brad told them they should call me up and take me sometime to a lesson. The first time they called I was really nervous, but it has turned out to be a great testimony building experience. I became good friends with an investigator, Ani, who is a young mom like me. She chose to be baptized and I was given the oppurtunity to speak at her baptism. It was a great night and the spirit was so strong. The next day Brad was able to confirm her a member of the church in Sacrement meeting. We have had them over since for Family Home Evening and have enjoyed the oppurtunity to fellowship and make new friends. Brad and I have been studying the preach my gospel manual and I am a proud sister reporting to my little missionary, Anziano Gneiting, in Italy each week ;).

This last week I started my new calling as the 10-11 year old Primary teacher. They are fun kids and I look forward to studying the Old Testament more for the rest of the year. Brad likes taking Jaxon, so it will be a nice two hours for me to enjoy some older kids each week.

With all of this being said, change is hard. I have a million reasons to love it here, but I still have days when I miss my family and friends and our lives in Logan. I've only had one real breakdown and it was the night before Brad started classes. I knew real life was starting and it is hard to say goodbye to the good old days (at least for me it is). 

I just bought a sign to hang in our apartment the other day that says: "Enjoy the little things because one day you will look back and realize those were the big things." I felt like this was perfect for our life right now. Sometimes it's hard to recognize the little things. Luckily I have two amazing boys in my life that bring me joy each day. Brad usually leaves before we are up, but he makes sure to kiss me goodbye and sends me texts or e-mails throughout the day. We even Facetime at lunch sometimes haha. Right now these are the little things I love. I hope I'll look back someday at this post and our memories and think, that was a great time of life.  

Our little Family
 
Me and Sister Brock

Before and after. Brad said I shouldn't have smiled in the first one and so it would be more dramatic lol. Then there's the bad lighting in the second, but whatever you get the idea.

Library "Baby Time"

Playing with his friend Brinley at running group