Tuesday, June 9, 2015

I don't want to click the "Publish" button

Something has been nudging me to dust of the old blog. So, after a two year hiatus from blogging about our lives, I suppose I'm back. Knowing me, it may not continue past the summer. It may not even continue past today.

Those of you expecting a light post with a family update or something equally flowery should turn back now. I feel compelled to write for therapy tonight and it likely won't be pretty. But, my goal this year is to Be Authentic and Honest (with capital letters to show you just how much I mean business about that). There are so many things I want to say, that I'm not sure I can even make sense.

Today I was just going about life, having one of those days where nothing really goes right, but nothing goes majorly wrong either. Just hard, but not bad.  I sat at Easton's T-ball game trying to enjoy myself, but I found myself being completely and totally annoyed by the other parents.  I sat there thinking awful things about complete strangers. I was completely overcome with anger for no apparent reason.

This happens a lot lately. A lot. More than I should admit. You should all say a prayer for my husband, because he is the one I usually unload my wagon of crazy on.

I've been especially angry the last few months. In the weeks and months after my miscarriage, the anger in my heart grew intensely and shaped me into a person I hardly know anymore. I have been especially angry with Heavenly Father. I completely shut Him out and turned my back on the gospel. I was not interested in a Father who instilled a desire in me for a child, blessed me with pregnancy, and then pulled the rug out from under me. I let the trial drown me. I let my grief overwhelm me.

I felt bitter as I watched women around me enjoy pregnancy and snuggle cozy newborns. Every pregnancy announcement on Facebook was a fresh hell and a new wave of anger. Every month when I wasn't pregnant again, I wanted to scream and pull my hair out. My body was betraying me (Isn't this what my body was built to do?!). My God was playing a cruel joke. SO. MUCH. ANGER.

It's ironic, really.

The day we found out that we had lost the pregnancy and in the days that followed, I remember knowing so clearly that my Father in Heaven was aware of me and knew me personally. I knew it more clearly than I have ever known anything. He prepared me all those months for this trial. He tried so hard to make it easier. I know that. I never forgot that feeling even in all my anger.

So, how did that knowing turn in to such intense, burning anger?

I forgot that misery loves company. And who is the most miserable being? Satan. I let him drag me down, down, down.

Recently, I decided to reverse the cards. I felt such an emptiness in my life, a loneliness. I took my time about it, to be sure. I'm nothing if I'm not stubborn. But once I began to soften my heart, I noticed the things the Lord had continued to bless me with despite my anger. I'm working on it. I really, really am. I don't want to be angry any more.

Obviously, I still have a long way to go. I still feel angry. I still want to throw myself out the window when someone announces a pregnancy. I will probably think about that baby every day forever. Maybe one day I'll understand the trial and won't feel angry. I'm certain that someday my chest won't feel like breaking open when I think about the baby. I'll lose count of how many weeks it's been since my due date passed me by (10). I think it's okay to go into the cave every now and then and feel the weight of sadness, but it's time to do it less.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Summer Bucket List

I have GOT to keep myself busy this summer. I'm already missing school and the little person in my head keeps yelling at me to "achieve something!!" So here is my list of awesome things I want to do this summer. I really hope it's enough to keep my mind occupied and make me feel like I'm working towards a goal. Wish us luck! I'll try to keep everything updated and post about which one is being crossed off the list.
1.  Go to the drive-in theater
2. Catch a fish
3. Have a picnic at Hyrum Dam
4. Hike the Wind Caves
5. Build an epic sand castle
6. Run a race...or two... :)
7. Read 3 classic novels
8. Go camping at least once
9. Visit Old Emphraim's grave
10. Watch a meteor shower
11. Go kayaking
12. Learn to make jam
13. Float a river
14. Visit a museum
15. Go to the zoo
16. Have a water fight
17. Cross 10 books off my to-read list
18. Learn a new skill
19. Finish the Book of Mormon

Friday, May 25, 2012

Father's Day

I did this little interview for Kade planning to publish it closer to Father's Day. I can't wait that long. It's too funny.
We love you, Kade. Happy early Father's Day. As E would say, "Dadda, you the best boy!"

How old is Daddy?---He's older than  me. He's older than you. I think he's older than the WHOLE WORLLLLD!
What does Daddy look like?--Frowny Clown. His name is Kade.
What does Daddy like to wear?---He likes to wear a clown nose on his bum!!! AND goggles on his eyes! (You can't make this stuff up, folks. It's all E.)
What does Daddy like to eat? --He likes to eat apples....and pears.
Why is Daddy smart?---I tooted! Cheetos! Do you have Cheetos? He can have candy if he's smart. I'll give him FIVE treats if he goes poop in the potty and take him to bowling!! He has to give a big push!
What does Daddy work really  hard at? ---He works and makes money for us. Daddies make money for us. He works for baseball and his other works.
What does Daddy always tell you?--He tells me "You're gonna go to time-out!" Momma, it's not funny! I'm telling you!
What makes Daddy happy? --Candy! I make him happy! My baby Livia kisses him.
If Daddy could go on a trip where would he go? --To baseball!! REDSOOOOXX!!!!
What do you love that Daddy does? ---BASEBALLLLLLLL. And plays with me and toys. He plays with me A LOT.
If you could give Daddy anything what would you give him? ---POOOP! (A true E answer)
What is your favorite thing about Daddy? --He gives me treats!

Kade will know that this are all straight from E's mouth. We love you, babe!

Thursday, April 26, 2012


Oh, hello there. Waiting for me to update, are you? Lots has been happening around the Gardner home lately, and now that I am *mostly* finished with the semester, I feel like I can take a deep breath and record some of our adventures... Here are the pictures from our last while and some updates to go with 'em.

For Valentine's Day, E and I had a great time making homemade Valentines for Daddy.

Then we covered Daddy's truck with hearts and candy

On Easter morning, E was super excited to see that the Easter Bunny had come and left some tracks behind!

Even Livvy enjoyed opening baskets and playing with new toys.

Lou in her super duper cute Easter dress from Grammy Kim and Grandpa Dennis

Alivia and Greyson

Easton and Brynlee

I let Livvy have solids for the first time on Easter. Just a banana and some potatoes

Unfortunately, she wasn't a fan yet. 

The best part of the day for E was doing egg hunts at both grandparent's homes

Easton has turned into such a Daddy's boy lately. He waits all day for him to come home and  is his shadow at night. 

We are so grateful for the warm weather and the beautiful Spring season we are having. Going outside makes such a big difference in our day!
Livvy has been doing really well lately. We took her to the chiropractor and switched her pediatrician, and now she struggles very little with her reflux and isn't taking any medicines for it. She's starting to like her solids more and can hold her own bottle. At her last appt. she was at 13 #s even and in the 40% for her weight, 75% for height, and 90% for head. I guess she has a huge noggin? She's full of smiles and chatters all  day long. Easton still loves her to the moon and back and goes out of his way to be sure that Sissy is happy. Easton is mostly potty trained now, and doing so well. I'm so proud of my little dude. He knows most of his letters and letter sounds and has started coloring inside the lines. What a big boy!
As for Kade and I, we are as busy as ever, and we are both so grateful that I can stay at home with our kids and spend time together as a family in the evenings. We are really looking forward to summer :)

Monday, February 6, 2012

Easton's World

E's world has changed a lot in the last two months. He's so longer the sole center of our universe. He's adjusted very well and we're happy to say that he's just as in love with Alivia as we are. Since our focus seems to be a lot on Lou lately, here's a brief look at what's new with our (not so) little man.

He's celebrated a birthday. Little Man is 3 now! And when there's a birthday, there's a party. This year E chose a Lion King theme. It turned out really well and we were so glad he had so many people come to celebrate with him. Here's a few pictures from the big day. The first one here is of him riding the new bike he got from Mom and Dad.
Here he is getting super excited when we wheeled in the new bike.
Getting the much antipicated guitar from Grandma and Grandpa Stock and wearing his super cool Angry Birds hat Brook made him.
Blowing out the candles.
The cake. It was impossible to find a Lion King cake so I ended up finding some little figurines on clearance at Walmart and taking them over to the bakery.
We told the kids to pop the balloons with their bums to get "money" from inside the balloons to buy their movie treats at the "theater". Dancing and being a goob at the party. These pictures are blurry because E likes to play with the camera and he had smudged up the lens. It took me a while to figure that out :)
Here he is just chilling in the hot tub on New Year's Eve. We got a hotel room for the night in town and let all the kids swim and play before we counted down the minutes to the new year. He had a great time playing and swimming with his cousins.
This is how I found him sleeping the other day. He had started to come downstairs from his nap, but I guess it was just too long of a trip so he fell back asleep on the stairs.
Here he is building his new toy tractor with Daddy.
That about sums up the past few weeks/months for E. We are so proud of what a great kid he is.

Alivia's Blessing

Yesterday, we blessed Alivia. Okay, Kade did it, but it makes me feel better to say "we" did it. She looked absolutely beautiful in her white blessing dress. It was crocheted by my Great Grandma Summers years and years ago, and is the same dress that I wore when I was blessed. Kade did an amazing job. I am always so amazed by the power of the priesthood and feel so grateful to have a wonderful husband who can bless our children. (I was also very proud that my dad was able to stand in the circle for the first time. Go, Dad!) It was a very emotional day, and I'm afraid that I've already forgotten a lot of things Kade blessed her with. But here were a few that I remember:
-A strong healthy body
-A love for the gospel and a desire to seek it out
-Patience for her older brother as he does his best to love her and do what's right for her
-The ability to look to her father to know how her eternal companion should treat her
-A temple marriage
-To be an example of Christ to those around her

I'm sure there were so many more beautiful things that Kade said, but I was distracted by my tears and the overwhelming Spirit I felt. And also, Alivia was true to herself and screamed the entire time she was being blessed :) I wouldn't have expected anything else.

There was something very different about blessing Alivia. A girl wears 3 white dresses in her life, and I couldn't help feel so blessed and grateful for her life as I dressed her in the 1st white dress and thought about the other 2 times that I will get to do that with her. Sometimes I can't help but stare at her (and E, too) and wonder who she will be when she's my age. I have no doubt that whoever she is, she will be a woman of worth and a source of great pride for her family.

My testimony of Eternal Families has grown so much in the short time Alivia has joined us. It's strange how each child reaffirms and contributes to your testimony in his or her own way. It's a comfort to me to know that I will never truly be separated from my husband and children--the great loves of my life. I'm so grateful for the grand design of Heavenly Father's plan.

When we decided to change the spelling of her name from Olivia to Alivia, my oldest sister, Rachel, said something that has been sticking in my mind lately. She said "It reminds me of "Alive". Funny how a single letter can change the meaning of her name so much, but I'm glad that she has a name that reminds people she's ALIVE. And she is :) So alive. And as Mary Poppins would say, she's "practically perfect in every way."

In other news, this is my 100th post! In other, other news, Lou went to the doctor today and she weighs 9 lbs 7 oz and measured 22.5 inches. Her height is average, but weight is fairly low (14%) but she's growing and happy and we're not concerned about her. She had her first shots and was a real trooper. I think it's because she had a spectacular Big Brother with her to help her be brave. *Sigh* It's a wonder my heart doesn't explode with love and joy.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

20 Questions with E

For Easton's birthday each year, I intend to ask him the same 20 questions and see how his answers change. When I'm really ambitious, I'll print them up and put them in a book with a birthday photo. Since his birthday is Thursday and I have a tiny moment of spare time, I'm doing it a little early.
1. What is your favorite color? --White (I think it's really orange, but whatever :))
2. What is your favorite food? --Ice Cream (He happens to be eating ice cream at the moment)
3.What is your favorite toy?-- Airplane Trios (blocks)
4. What is your favorite fruit?--Strawberry
5. What is your favorite TV show?--Little Einsteins
6. What is your favorite movie?--"Bout the dogs" He means Lady and the Tramp which he hasn't even really seen, but we got it from the library this week. His real favorites are Lion King, Madagascar, Alvin and the Chipmunks, and Kung Fu Panda.
7. What is your favorite song?--Itsy Bitsy
8. Who is your best friend?--Oakley (our neighbor)
9. What is your favorite drink?--He pointed to my water, but really he drinks 90 cups of chocolate milk every day.
10. What is your favorite thing to do outside??-- "My bike"
11. What is your favorite animal? --A zebra
12. What is your favorite book? "One with the dinosaurs!" He means the Dinosaur ABC book we got at the library this week.
13. What is your favorite holiday? --Halloween
14. What do you want to be when you grow up? --"Jesus!"....Priceless...
15. What is your favorite cereal?--"Chocoooolate"
16. What is your favorite breakfast?--Pancakes and bacon
17. What do you want to have for dinner on your birthday?--hot dogs
18. What is your favorite snack?-- Cake
19. What is your favorite game? --Memory
20. What is your favorite sport?--baseball (making his daddy SO proud)