Welcome to BBW, Sarah!

I started down a new path last week. After almost two years of staying home and hiding from everything, I got a job! I applied, got a call, and had an interview, went in for paperwork and videos last Thursday and I had my very first real shift on Monday. Yay!

In a span of a week, I went from nervous to excited back to nervous all the way to legitimately scared. It’s such a big change. I haven’t been “out in the world” for so long. How in the heck am I supposed to be safe AND still live life?!

The night before I was supposed to go in for my first day, I was laying in bed in total panic attack mode. Ricky was at work so I was at home by myself trying to sleep. I started crying and honestly kind of freaking out. I immediately got on my knees begging my Heavenly Father to help me calm down.

As I was finishing up my prayer, my sweet husband came home and found me surrounded by my emotional wreckage. He held me while I cried and talked, offering no solutions or fixes, just hugs. When I was out of tears, he offered to give me a blessing. It was exactly what I needed. We stayed up a little longer and had some ice cream. (Ice cream ALWAYS makes things better!!) Then went to bed.

The first day was pretty boring – paperwork and videos. Yesterday was much more fun. I got to actually be on the floor doing things. It’s definitely going to be a learning curve, but I’ve done retail jobs before so I’m not super worried about it. Everyone I’ve met has been super sweet and excited for me to be there. I’m looking forward to getting to know these girls!

As for my anxiety about it all, it’s still there. It’s always going to be there. I just need to pay attention to it and really be in tune with myself. I know that I can do things that seem scary. I know that I’ve got so many people in my corner who love and support me. I know that I can turn to my Father in Heaven anytime I need that extra hand to hold. And finally, I know that this is going to be a fantastic experience!!

Sitting vs Running

If you’ve been around for a while, follow me on social media, or know me at all, you know that I love books. I’m always reading. I always have a book with me where ever I go. A few weeks ago, I pounded three 500+ page books in less than a week. Great books. Loved ’em all! As I was picking out a fourth, Ricky mentioned that maybe I need a break. “Take a breather.” So I did. I didn’t like it.

I’ve read books to escape real life and my anxious brain my whole life. Reading isn’t just entertaining for me. It’s a way to get away from my thoughts. Duh. That makes sense. Everyone has something like that in their lives – books, food, tv, games, drugs… The list goes on. There’s a line between “loving ____” and “running away.” It’s important to find that balance.

Now that I’m talking to Shelby, there’s been new things/feelings that were coming up. Things I didn’t necessarily want to deal with. It’s a lot to work through and it’s very uncomfy. I don’t like how I feel or what I’m thinking, so I pick up my book. Easy.

I had a week between the book binge escape and my next appointment with Shelby, so I talked to Ricky, we decided that I needed to take that week to sit in my feelings. Try to navigate my way through it.

It was a really hard, long week. I could really see what reading did for me. But I didn’t want to keep mentally running away. Talking to Shelby is important but it’s not going to do anything if I don’t take the things I’m learning and use them. So I didn’t read. Instead, I would try to work through what my anxiety was saying. There were lots of tears that week.

When I finally had my conversation with Shelby, I told her about my week, the binge reading, the not reading/sitting in my thoughts and feelings, and what I’d learned. She was so proud of me for learning about myself and how I handled the whole thing. She was happy that I was willing to do what I need to to grow.

My homework that week was to start questioning why I’m reading. Every time I pick up my book, I have actively stop and ask myself: Why am I reading? What am I avoiding? Or is a book is what I’m craving? I’ve learned how to analyze the reasons I’m wanting to read. If I am not trying to avoid anything or if I’m just really wanting to read, I go for it. If I’m running away from a feeling or an anxiety, I have to stop and figure out what it is and why.

It’s been a couple weeks since that appointment and I’m doing better with the balance. I’m still reading, but for happiness and entertainment. Because I’m reading with purpose, I’ve noticed that I’m reading slower and enjoying the story more. I am a fast reader, regardless, so I’m still plowing through books pretty fast, but it’s with joy now!

Learning To Not Be Okay

In talking with Shelby (my fantastic counselor and new non-biased best friend), I have discovered that I put a ridiculous and overwhelming amount of pressure on myself. Pressure on myself for what? To be a good wife, a good daughter/sister, a good friend, a good disciple, a good human…. The list goes on and on.

I have also learned that I’m really good at judging myself when I don’t reach the impossible goals I set. I have to learn to be more compassionate with myself. When a friend comes to me with a problem, I don’t judge. I love. I wouldn’t question every little thing they did. Well, Sarah is just as important as that friend. I need to love her just as much. I have to understand that I’m not perfect – and that’s okay. I also need to ground my expectations.

It’s so hard. I’ve been told my whole life that I’m strong and that I can handle anything. I have now burned that into how I live my life. If I’m not strong, then that means I’ve failed. If I can’t handle the things that are going on in my life, then everyone was wrong, right?

I’ve also constructed this Idea that in order to show my heart angel how grateful I am for their gift, I can’t say no. I have to live my life 110%! If I don’t then I’ve disappointed them and showed they that I didn’t deserve it. And on top of that, because I was such a sick kid, there was so much I “missed out on” so I have to make up for that in my adult life because I’m healthy now.

If I’m not thriving, then what am I doing? “Just” surviving isn’t an option. I have to be strong and take everything with a smile on my face. And if I don’t, then something’s wrong with me? Why did I not do it right? Why? Annnnd….que the self judgement.

Now, I know that these are just thoughts trying to protect me and they are not true, but they’re there and they are loud. And they are valid. Every thought I have is valid. But not every thought serves me. I’m still learning how to ask what the purpose of the thoughts are. I’m going to be learning for a while. This is a hard thing to readjust.

So for now, I am practicing being compassionate towards myself, understanding that it’s okay to simplify my goals, and know that I’m still doing a good job at living life if all that happens that day is waking up.

Today was one of those days. I was very much in my feelings today. Life’s hard and I’m tired of it being hard. I haven’t been too understanding or compassionate to Sarah today. And I know that I should be and so I judge myself on how I’m lacking and it turns into a big old circle. Round and round.

But it’s okay to not be okay. Sometimes surviving is the best we can do. So, I’m trying put a stop to my circle and tell myself that I am doing my best and it’s okay that my best today was getting out of bed and taking a shower. That’s awesome! I’m so proud of myself!

Sometimes I slip back into the circle, but that’s okay. I’m still learning. I can’t wait to tell Shelby all about how hard today was. I can’t wait to tell her the moments that broke me because I know she’ll be proud of me for trying. She’ll tell me that I’m amazing for doing the best I could. And you know what? She’ll be right! I did good today. It’s okay that It was hard and you know what? Tomorrow is a new day to keep trying!

Sarah’s Head

It’s kinda crazy in here… In my head. There’s so much going on all the time. It’s always busy with something or other – singing a song, quoting a movie in its entirety, thinking about the book that I’m currently reading (or the one I just finished), worrying about situations that my or may not be in my control, being self-conscious about how others see me, questioning everything I do, wondering if I’m living up to my potential or if I’m wasting my second chance. See? It’s a little insane being in my head. Lots of whiplash!

You see, I was “unofficially” diagnosed with depression, anxiety, and maybe ptsd. I say “unofficially” because at my last annual heart appointment, I mentioned that I was struggling in that area of my life – the mental side. My heart team called in the physiologist that works with the team, and we had a little conversation. He asked me what was happening and I told him that I had been “sad a lot” and “I wasn’t always happy like I used to be.”

We talked a bit before he told me that he was pretty sure that I had depression and anxiety…with isn’t a big surprise with what I have been through throughout my life. I guess it’s a common diagnosis, especially in transplant patients. Since then, I’ve been on a dose of an anti-depressant and meeting with a wonderful counselor!

Since that heart appointment, I have actually received a diagnosis. I have General Anxiety Disorder. What does that mean, personally for me? For me, it means that I am overanalyze and question everything every single moment of the day. One example of this that makes me smile is the night before I met my counselor. I was laying in bed, trying to go to sleep, wondering what I should wear the next morning for my appointment. It was the first time we were going to meet each other. I wanted to give a good first impression. I struggled with this all night.

The next morning, after worrying out loud, Ricky reminded me that it didn’t matter. She was going to see me of good days, bad days, and all days. It didn’t matter. It kind of helped ease my mind, but I still struggled with making sure I was cute and put together. It turned out that it actually didn’t matter, and since then, she’s seen me in all sorts of appearances. Haha.

Another one that I struggle with and am exploring with her is my constant questioning of “if I’m a good wife.” I was talking to her one day and we were discussing the different spirals that I often find myself trying to not drown in on a daily (sometimes hourly) basis. She asked me about what my most often visited one was. I told her, “if I’m a good wife or not.” With that thought, I immediately started down the rabbit hole. The sink was still full of dishes, the laundry wasn’t folded, I hadn’t made any plans for dinner yet, the house was a mess, the garbage needed taking out… Everything on my “not done” list led to some pretty dark stuff.

Once she was able to help me out of the spiral, we talked about what it means to be a “good wife” and what things I’m supposed to do to accomplish that. I told her that my mom is a good wife and so are both of my grandmothers. Good wives are loving, kind, supportive, and so on. I also explained that I know my husband loves me even if the dishes aren’t done and that he’s told me that he’s willing to help with things that I don’t get done, but my brain is focused on that he’s at work all day and I’m home so I should be handling the house.

We talked about that for a minute and then she mentioned a really interesting thing. From the beginning of time, we’ve had thoughts… Some of them true, some of them not. But whatever the thoughts are saying, they’re there to protect us, even if it’s worse case scenario. “Oh, I’m hungry…” (okay, eat so your tummy doesn’t hurt) or “I have to make dinner before Hubby gets home… (otherwise he’ll leave you for someone who actually makes him food.) See? It’s crazy stuff that our thoughts come up with.

With help, I have been able to understand, rationalized, and acknowledge the thoughts I have in my head without following them down their individual spirals. It’s been interesting to take that time to realize how much power I’ve been giving these thoughts.

Some of them are good and do me well, some of them are irrational and serve me no purpose, and some of them are silly and make me smile. I’m still trying to differentiate the difference and question (superficially for right now) why I’m having them. I’m excited to explore my mental health and take control of my anxieties with the help of my fantastic counselor! Wish me luck!

Vulnerable

Over the years, I’ve struggled with letting myself be vulnerable on my blog. I debate with myself every time I get ready to post something less than happy. Not because life isn’t hard, but because I want to be a source of light and hope.

There have been points in my transplant journey that weren’t always sunny, There have been posts about heartbreak and starting over. There have been moments where I have put myself into a vulnerable place here.

And. That’s. Okay.

This blog is my journal. This is where I can authentically be me in my thoughts and words. So, I would like to promise you (and myself) that I will try to do better at that. <3

Thoughts With Sarah

I’ve been trying to figure out how to best express my thoughts and opinions about the COVID-19 pandemic and everything surrounding it without causing offence. I knew that I wanted to put my views into the world. I wanted people to know what was going on in my head… BUT I didn’t want to cause any arguments or issues because I know everyone has their own beliefs, thoughts, and opinions.

I also know that my beliefs, thoughts, and opinions are valid and I wanted to share them in a way that is safe for me. After some thinking, I realized that that’s part of the reason I have this blog. So, here I am and here are my thoughts…

I was born with a sick heart and because of how sick I was, my body was dying. After lots of surgeries and medical intervention, I was blessed to receive an angel heart seven years ago. This heart is a foreign being in my own body, since the antibodies and stuff don’t match me. When our bodies don’t recognize and match other things, it attacks it. Since my heart doesn’t match me, my body is constantly trying to attack it.

To help prevent this, I am on several different medications called immunosuppressants. These meds lower my immune system. One of the side effects on being suppressed is I get sick way easier than other people who aren’t on these meds.

As an immunosuppressed person, I am in the category of “high risk” people. That means that if I somehow catch this horrible illness, I am sent straight to the hospital…and maybe live. No, I’m not being dramatic. That’s my life.

When all of this started back at the beginning of March, Ricky and I were so blessed to have already had moved in and living with my parents until things became more normal. It was a huge relief to have had their love, support, and company during the shutdown/quarantine. During this time, we all kicked our already obsessive sanitizing habits into high gear – constantly wiping down door knobs and light switches, washing our hands continuously, and Dad even reinstalled a sanitizer station by the front door. All of us joked that “this is what our previous training was preparing us for!” Since we were already in the habit, it wasn’t weird to be doing this.

While everyone was hiding in their homes, bathing in sanitizer, I was reminded how normal this was for me, my family…and other immunosuppresed people. I saw several “now you know what MY life is like” or “welcome to my world” posts all over social media by people who have issues with their immune system. Yes, the “high risk population” are in a constant state of anxious cleaning and paranoia that we could get sick.

After my transplant, for quite a while, I work a mask. It helped protect me from breathing in germs. I wore it to church, work, the doctor, shopping, to my friends’ houses, outside…everywhere. Anytime I was around other people, I wore that mask. To me, my mask was my shield.

Several officials, including health professionals and scientists, have recommended that we continue to wear masks when we are in public places and around people, along with correct social distancing. There have been studies that show how effective this is as a preventative method, both to ourselves and for those around us.

The world is scary and we want to be “normal” again. But how can we do that if we are all so divided in our thoughts and actions? Getting back to “normal” isn’t going to work unless we are strong and work together in one common cause – doing everything we can to keep each other and ourselves safe. In trying to figure out how I wanted to write this post, I came up with a really cool metaphor. Are ya ready?

When you bake a cake and follow the directions exactly, you have a delicious cake at the end. When you choose to not include one of the ingredients, or don’t put all of it in, the cake doesn’t turn out…and you’re not going to want to eat it. Well, it’s the same thing as what’s going on right now! When we do what we’ve been asked, we will get the result we want – we will all be kept safe and healthy – but if we are divided and don’t do things all the way, it’s not going to work and turn out the way we’re expecting.

There is a song that I learned growing up that pops into my head almost every morning. I’d like to share the words with you:

“I want to be kind to everyone, for that is right you see. So I say to myself, remember this: ‘kindness begins with me!'”

(Words and music by Clara W. McMaster)

There are so many different ways we get our information and everything is so confusing… I totally understand why we’re divided. I think the very best way to get through the rest of whatever this is is to just be kind and respect one another. We all have our own experiences and opinions that we base all of our actions on. I don’t know why some people choose not to wear their mask because I don’t know what they’ve been through, but please don’t be mean because I wore mine.

We Moved!

Happy Sunday everyone. I just wanted to write a quick post to update everyone that we are back! Wanna know the story as to why Pocatello? Well, too bad, because I’m gonna tell it anyway….

The July after we got married, we came up to spend the 4th with my family. As we were sitting on the soccer fields, Ricky looked over at me and smiled. I asked him what he was thinking and he told me, “We gotta move back.”

No way! I thought. Why in the world would we need to come back to a place we both didn’t want to be in our adult life? I protested and he told me we’d talk about it later.

Later came and he told me that he had received a prompting that we were supposed to move back to Idaho but didn’t know when. I still had a good year left of school, so we decided that our move would have to wait until after I graduated. We took our decision to the Lord and He was okay with it.

Fast forward to the next years July/August – I’m done with school and once again, Ricky got the prompting that we needed to move to Pocatello. We lightly talked about it and then kinda pushed it out of our minds. We didn’t want to go. We loved our life that we had created in Utah.

A few weeks later, Ricky had a super strong prompting that the move was something we really needed to ponder because it would be huge for our little family. We discussed, fasted, and prayed, asking our Father in Heaven when. “Soon.” Okay, well how soon?

The answer we had been searching for came when Ricky started his job at Maverick in December. The manager told him that if we could wait to move until February/March, we would be able to be transferred. We’d move with Ricky having a job already! It was perfect!!

About this same time, Jodee and Dick call us up for a family meeting. We sit down with them and they proceeded to tell us that Jodee’s niece was getting married at the end of February and they were looking for a place to live. Since we’d be out by then, it would be perfect! Everything that was happening looked like all the puzzle pieces were lining up!

I was getting excited….even if it was Pocatello we were moving to. We both have family in Pocatello, so even though I felt like there was nothing there for me, I’d have them! We were “looking” for housing and getting ready. As things started to get closer, it started to feel more real. I started to dig my heels in a little harder. I’m leaving Utah. My life was here. This is were my friends are. This is were our family started. I didn’t want to leave. This was something I didn’t want to do and didn’t know why I had to do it.

After some personal pondering and some wonderful conversations with my Father in Heaven, I was told that I needed to trust my husband. I was reminded that my sweetheart is the priesthood holder in our family and he can see things that I can’t. I also relearned that I needed to have faith in my Father and His plans for my life.

About the time we were getting ready to start seriously looking for houses and a job for me, Ricky slipped on the ice and had to be taken to the ER. (I swear this boy is in the hospital more than I have ever been!😉) We found out that his fall had caused some beautiful internal bruising and at least one cracked rib. The doctor excused him from work for a couple of days and then added “light duty” for at least two weeks. His job was more demanding than what he could do, so he was let go.

So with him not working or getting transferred when we moved, we didn’t know what to do. We talked, cried, and prayed with our Heavenly Father about what our next steps needed to be since our plan we had worked out was ruined.

But it wasn’t ruined! The plan just needed a little tweaking and a little bit of speeding up. We called my parent’s and asked if we could move in with them for a bit while we looked for jobs and could afford a place of our own. I put my two weeks notice in at work and we started packing! Those two weeks went by so fast! Before we knew it, everything we owned was in the back of a U-haul.

Here we are, two weeks into living in Pocatello again. The reasons Heavenly Father has for us being here have started to show themselves little by little. Some are still kind of fuzzy, but I think I’m starting to be okay with the move now. Haha. It’s been fun to be close to siblings again and building those relationships back up. We are excited for our new adventure and look forward to all the learning and growing we are going to get to do together!

Playing Catch-up

Wow… How have I not touched this blog for almost two years?! I was doing so good with posting consistently too. Ugh, SO many things have happened! Like lots of big life stuff. Should I do separate posts…?? Or PHOTO DUMP!!! I know it’s your favorite thing. Just be prepared for a huge one since it’s about two years worth of life. Let’s go!

December 2019:

Ricky got a new job…again! He got hired on as the night guy at Maverick just down the road from where we live! (After some time as a driver, Ricky started feeling very anxious and uncomfy with the job, so we talked, a lot. After some soul searching and counseling with the Lord, he left that job.) Now his schedule keeps him up all night and he’s basically nocturnal. It’s hard because I’m not. BUT he’s sleeping when I’m at work, he’s at work when I’m sleeping so we’re “home” together more than we have been. AND we have our weekends together back again! It’s been a huge blessing, but we’re still trying to find our groove again.

Merry Christmas from the Taynors! Ricky had to work Christmas Eve, so we got to have dinner and hang out with Dick, Joddee, her son, and his girl! It was a fun filled evening with family and love. Ricky went to work and I went to bed. Then as soon as Ricky got home, we hit the road! (By this time, he had been awake for about 18 hoursish?) We drove to Pocatello and had Christmas morning with my family! We spent the whole weekend eating, laughing, and having so much fun.

My cousin Justin got married the weekend after Christmas so we got to go witness their sealing. It was beautiful and they are so perfect for each other. Kim, I can’t wait to get to know you!

November 2019:

I’m weird and have missed school and learning new things everyday, so I have set a goal to learn (and practice) a few new hairdos a week so I can up my hair styling game!

We went to Cora’s house for Thanksgiving. I forgot to get pictures of dinner, but I do have this one…and I didn’t even take it. Oh well. (I sure love all my sisters I got when I married into this family!)

October 2019:

Ricky surprised me with a trip to go pick pumpkins! We also got to go on a wagon ride, ate lots of honey sticks, and had a wonderful night of quality time building memories!! 

Every year for the last few years, all the adult girls on my dad’s side of the family have gone to Saint George and partied for a weekend. There’s lots of shopping, laughing, crafts, and a Tuachan show! This year we saw The Little Mermaid.

I got new glasses! They are super cute and they transition into sunglasses when I’m in the sun.

Another year…with another annual appointment. We did something new this time. No biopsy!! I did a stress echo instead and it was nuts! There were also a few med changes and lots of pokes. The docs said everything looked beautiful and that the didn’t want to see me again until next year!

September 2019:

Just a random night, neither of us could sleep so we ate cereal and watched Lucifer at 3 o’clock in the morning.

One of my favorites released a new song and I’m still obsessed! And Ricky actually admitted to me that he kind of likes her, so that was fun.

August 2019:

Our car got totaled but everyone involved got to walk away with nothing major wrong.

After month’s of healing, looking, and praying, Ricky got a new job as a shuttle driver! It’s been fun for us to work in the same place! His schedule was the opposite of mine, so we really didn’t see much of each other.

July 2019:

I turned in my very last LDBC interior design project! Even though I walked in April, I was short one credit. I hated the class…but loved what I learned! It was so much stinking work for just a one credit class.

Yes, those are my wedding pictures in my model. 😉

I DYED MY HAIR RED AND GOT BANGS….again! We went over to my cousin’s salon and she made me pretty!

Ricky’s friend invited us to drive up to Lava to swim on weekend. As insensitive for me to come too, I got ice cream. I think it was a pretty good trade. Besides, who would pass up square ice cream? It’s the best!

June 2019:

June was filled with lots of traveling…but not with each other. Ricky’s uncle died, so he went to Washington and got to be there with family. It was hard, but so good for him to be there.

While Ricky was gone, my dad and I were guests at the Utah Heart and Stroke Ball. I was recognized at a heart worrier, along with several others. If you know what we are like around each other, it was a night of giggles and memories!

Almost as soon as Ricky got back from Washington, I jumped on a plane and went to New Jersey! Lydia was getting married and I got to be a part of it! I saw some amazing architecture, got poured on by a rainstorm, ate at Rita’s, and had a wonderful time with my friend as she started the next step in her life!

May 30, 2019:

We moved!! Since Ricky wasn’t working, we couldn’t afford to continue living in our apartment. It was sad, but we were able to move into the basement of an amazing couple in our ward. They had just bought an RV and planned to be gone lots during the summer. They didn’t want to leave their house, cats, or garden unattended and we needed a place to live. It worked out perfectly and I have NO doubt that Heavenly Father’s guidance pushed all of us closer. We have loved living with Dick and Jodee. They have become our family. We love them so much!

May 2019:

Ricky’s “kinda” started a business! He etches the gorgeous patterns on vases. We decided that with me being the only one working, he needed something that would keep him busy and try to help our income. I am in awe of his many talents.

April 2019:

April was a BIG month for us! I got to participate in the Senior Showcase and display my portfolio, I received an award that is only given to one graduation student in each department, I graduated college, celebrated my heart-aversary, and we had our one year wedding anniversary!

For our anniversary, we went to this adorable little air bnb bed and breakfast for the weekend as celebration of me graduating AND our anniversary. I really slacked on the pictures during that trip, so enjoy a video from the day we got married, because who wouldn’t want to see that cuteness?!

And as you know, April is also my Heart-aversary! It’s been 6 years since this wonderful gift was given to me! I can’t even begin to express my gratitude for the last six years of my life. So much has happened and I am so thankful that I was here to experience my life for myself! (Again, I slacked on pictures of our balloon launch. Oops.)

February 2019:

Ricky fell on some ice and screwed up his knee. After a few days of prayer and conversation, he went in and quit his job. This was a crazy thing to have happen. We were just floating along through life, then this had to happen. This started what felt like the whirlwind of “bad luck” that was 2019 for our little family.

The couch was the only place he could sleep comfortably. Good thing we have two couches! We just squished them together and slept in a little nest for a few weeks.

Our cute little kitty also had a health scare about the same time Ricky fell. He got super bloated/swollen, wouldn’t let us even touch him, and just overall didn’t look like he felt good. One morning, Ricky rushed him to the vet because he was pooping just blood… Long story short, the dr thought it looked like kitty cancer. She gave him some meds that seemed to help, but also told us that it was just a matter of time before he flared up again. We had to have the hard talk about what to do if/when that happened again.

But…we haven’t had to do anything about it yet! He’s his playful, cuddly self again! He’s doing wonderful and we are so glad! <3

January – March 2019:

I was an intern at an actual design firm for about threeish months. I was able to have the opportunity to learn and grow thanks to some amazing interior designers at Alice Lane in Salt lake. I got really good at organizing the sample library, pulling samples, finding inspo or pricing, and I even got to sit in on a few client meetings. It was so cool!


January 5, 2019:

We went to the aquarium just because we could! There are so many crazy animals in this world.

New Years 2019:

Happy 2019!!! We stayed home and had a Harry Potter marathon with lots of food and homemade butter beer. We brought our mattress out into the living room. We may have left it there for a few days longer than we planned. It’s definitely going to be a tradition.

December 25th, 2018:

CHRISTMAS!!! It was the Taynors turn this time. It was so fun to get to spend time with my amazing in-laws and cute nieces/nephews! (I really slacked on pictures this time.)

November 28th, 2018:

Thanksgiving with the Browns!

November 5th, 2018:

We actually did it! We adopted a cat! We had been talking for a few months about adding another element of crazy to our lives. One night we just went to “look” and just fell in love with this little fluff ball named Flannel. He’s been the best little fur baby!

October 19th, 2018:

My annual biopsy for my angel heart. This was another first for Ricky. Luckily, my mom was there to help guide him through the medical technicality of it all.

July 22nd, 2018:

I gave Ricky the first haircut of our marriage! I was so nervous….and he hasn’t had me do it again since. I’m not sure what that means for my future as his hair dresser.

Sometime in early June 2018:

We went camping with the Taynors! It was soooo fun! During the week, Cora, Anthony, and Layla got sealed in the temple. It was crazy to go from camping, to the temple, and back to camping. We also took family pictures while everyone was there. Since then, there have been 3 more grand babies have been born!!

May 23rd and June 11th, 2019:

We had birthdays! Something fun about getting engaged at the end of the year and then getting married before anything exciting happens, is that we got to do a lot of “firsts” as married couples. It was fun to celebrate our “first” birthdays together being married.

For Ricky, we just did a quiet stay at home thing. For mine, I went to lunch with Ashley and Lydia. Since our birthdays are like two weeks apart, we went out to dinner and celebrate both of us.

May 16th, 2018:

We bought a car and named her Felisha! She was very first married purchase. She’s been a fun addition to our little family.

April 21st, 2018:

We went to Primary Children’s for lunch and ate while I told hospital stories. Then we went on a walk through the Angel Garden and sent balloons to my heart angel. This was Ricky’s first Angel Heart Birthday. It was fun to show him where such a huge part of my life took place.

Happy 5 year Heart-aversary to me!

April 13th, 2018:

WE GOT MARRIED!!! It was the most incredible day. I grew up knowing what I wanted my wedding day to be like, but I didn’t know if I would actually get the opportunity in this life to be married. This day was a dream come true in WAY more than just one way.

March 21st and March 27th, 2018:

We finished interviews and got our “grown up” temple recommends so we could receive our endowments and be one step closer to getting married. Endowments help us become closer to our Heavenly Father. We make eternal covenants and learn how he blesses us when we strive to follow the promises we made in the temple. We had lots of family and friends (including 2 of my roommates that I love and miss living with!) there with us. After we were done, we all went out to dinner! It was such a wonderful night.

I am so grateful for the opportunities we have to go to the temple whenever we want. I love escaping life and feeling the absolute peace of the Spirit.

Weekend Fun

Okay, first thing’s first. Only 35 days until I’m married you guys! I can’t wait to be married to my best friend. I’m so excited!!

Whew, okay. Now onto what this post is really about: Last weekend! Cora and Anthony were blessing their cute little Layla last week, so lots of the Taynor family got together for some fun. Josh, Callee, and their kids came down from Idaho a couple nights early so they could spend time with Ricky and I. They didn’t leave Idaho until late Friday night, so I opted in staying until the got to Ricky’s apartment instead of waiting to see them the next day. They didn’t get to Midvale until about 12ish, I think. It was a late night for all of us… I was surprised that the kiddos didn’t pass out as soon as they weren’t in the car anymore! Of course, when they did get here, we all stayed up even longer, played with the baby and chatted. An hour or so later, Ricky and Callee took me home while Josh stayed to put the munchkins in bed.

If anyone was wondering, yes. Callee does fit in the back seat of their car in between the car seat and booster!

Despite it being so late the night before, we wanted to make sure we had time to do everything we had planned. The next morning I was headed back to Midvale at 8:30. (Side note: I can not tell you how stoked I am to not have to say goodbye every time I say goodnight. I can’t wait until when Ricky’s apartment is my apartment too and I’ll already be home when it’s time for bed! Okay, moving on…) Ricky and Miles came to pick me up from the station to run a few errands.

Last Monday, we had gone suit shopping for Ricky and Oh. My. Goodness. I love him so much. He’s such a goof ball though… He wouldn’t just stand there for a picture for my mom, so this is what I ended up with.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Those were ready Saturday, so we went to go pick it up. With Miles in tow, we picked up the suite and headed home. Sometime between picking me up and being home, we had gotten into the conversation of why my last name isn’t Taynor…yet. It was so funny. Miles asked what my last name was and after I told him, he questioned why. Being 6, I don’t think he comprehended it because at one point he stated that he would marry his baby sister so she could still be a Taynor when she grew up. It was pretty cute!

This is an old picture from my Thanksgiving week visit but it still proves my point. How can you say no to that face? I would’ve given her all of it without hesitation!

We got back to the apartment, said good morning, got Miles some breakfast, snagged the baby from her bed, and ran to the apartment complex office to pay rent. When that errand was done, Josh and Callee were getting up and ready. They were going to make a Starbucks run so in exchange for watching the kids for them, they were going to bring back hot chocolate for me and Ricky. I ended up sharing life a third of my frozen hot chocolate with baby Ella because I can’t say no to her. She makes me melt.

We had talked about it and we decided that it would be fun to take the train back to Salt Lake. It would be cheaper because we wouldn’t have to pay for parking plus it would give Miles something cool to do during the trip. After every one was ready, we climbed in the cars and drove to the trax station.

Not sure what Miles is doing with his face… Haha!

We went to Gateway, mainly for the planetarium but obviously because the boys had me and Callee with them, there was a lot of pit stops and distractions. We finally made it to the planetarium and had so much fun. We watched the pendulum knock down blocks, how the phases of the moon works, what hurricanes look like in the ocean, and we even got to drive a rover (well, Miles did)!! After that adventure was had, we went over to City Creek for dinner and headed home.

Josh and crew were going over to Shantel’s for the night so her family could have a turn…and so Ricky and I could have our regularly scheduled date night. We said goodbye for the night before settling down by ourselves to register for wedding gifts and a movie. It was fun to have a quiet night with just him after such a fun and busy day…

Two brothers and a baby.

 

The next morning was the baby blessing. It was in Ogden and we had gotten dumped on with snow the night before, so we had to make sure we were leaving early enough. We only got stuck once! It took me behind the wheel, Ricky and four other guys pushing to get us out. Man, we really need a winter car. Who wants to give us one?! Haha!!

This is literally the best picture… I love this little princess so much! (And the guy too. 😉 )

The freeway was pretty clear so it wasn’t a super bad drive once we actually got out of the city. We got there safely and early!! It was really fun to be at church with my wonderful “new” family! I love them so much! I got to cuddle a few kiddos during Sacrament meeting and loved every second of it! It’ll be a few years until my siblings have kids, so it’s been exciting to become an automatic aunt! I didn’t know how much I would love being an aunt until I got to be one!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After church, we headed over to Cora and Anthony’s house for lunch. We had laughs, good conversation, and lots of pizza. It’s amazing to me how well I fit into Richard’s family… I am so grateful for their willingness to let me in and become apart of it! It’s almost like this was all planned. Haha!

It was such a fun weekend filled with lots of happiness. Thanks Cora and Anthony for letting us join in on your special day!

Engagement Picture Cuteness

Happy almost March! Can you believe it? This year is going by so fast already. We recently had our engagement pictures taken. We went to a really fun park in Draper. It had bridges, hills, creeks, train tracks. It was perfect. Richard’s aunt did a beautiful job!! I am totally in love with how they turned out and I can’t stop looking at them…

 

 

 

Wedding planning is going great so far…with just a little bit of stress because that’s who I am as a person. Ha! I know there’s no reason to stress, but I am. Thankfully I have Richard to help get me down from getting too stressed out and too into my own thoughts. He’s amazing. I sure can’t wait to marry him. Only 50 days, 3 hours, 48 minutes, and 20 seconds to go! <3 <3 <3