"Thank heaven there is tomorrow. Because there is tomorrow, all our yesterdays have meaning and all our dreams have hope."

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


I'm really not a TV Junkie . . . really, I am not. Am I trying to convince you or me? Just kidding. I really only have a few "have-to-see" shows . . . and what would I do without TiVo!? I am so disappointed with the lack of new episodes on many of the shows this season because of the writers strike. However, Lost pre-recorded their episodes for the season. So, I am now looking forward to Thursday nights and some new TV! WOOHOO!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

12 Reasons Why I am Crazy About Jason

He makes me laugh - Anyone who truly knows Jason knows that he has quite a sense of humor. There isn't a day that goes by where I don't find myself laughing because of him.

He is such a hard worker - Full time advertising career, MBA school at night, family and church . . . where does he find the time?

He likes a clean house too - We are neat freaks to a fault. Someday I know that's gotta change . . .

He is my travel buddy - Jason loves a good adventure as much as I do. We have fun everywhere we go, whether it's to Hawaii or to Cedar City for a weekend get-a-way.

He is the "class clown" - Jason can break up any contention with humor. It's a true talent he has . . .

He knows how to calm me down and loves me anyway - I am an anxiety freak. I freak out over everything. He lets me be the crazy girl I am . . . and then helps me calm down. He's kinda a miracle worker. :)

He loves a good car dance contest - What's a car dance? Well, Jason loves to bust-a-move in the car while driving. With a little bit of persuasion he can get me to join too.

He will let me win a tennis match every now and then - Yeah, most of the time he beats me, but he knows when I NEED to win a match.

He is intelligent - Really in every aspect, Jason knows what he is doing.

The crinkles around his eyes when he smiles - Have you never seen his eyes when he smiles?! It's one of my favorite things about him!

He is a faithful priesthood holder - I can always count on him to build our "spiritual fortress" at home.

He is Gavin's daddy - He was the perfect father for Gavin and Gavin was the perfect son for him.

These are just a few reasons I love Jason . . . but really, I could go on and on.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Our Prophet Gordon B. Hinckley

I had a flood of emotions when I heard about the passing of our Prophet Gordon B. Hinckley last night. I felt sad - he has been our prophet through my most critical years and even through my "teenage decisions" (which weren't always good ones) I always felt his love - always. When he spoke I felt like he was talking directly to me. That is a real gift and I will miss that. However; I also felt so much joy for him. I can only imagine the greetings he must have had on the other side as he met with his wife and other loved ones, knowing he had been a faithful servant of our Savior. What an amazing man! We sometimes joke that there must have been one kickin' party when Gavin returned home . . . I can only imagine what kind of party they had for President Hinckley!

This is one of President Hinckley's quotes from his wife Marjorie's funeral in 2004. I keep it in my scriptures and read it often:

Put Your Trust in God
It isn’t as bad as you sometimes think it is.
It all works out. Don’t worry.
I say that to myself every morning.
It will all work out.
Put your trust in God, and move forward with faith and confidence in the future.
The Lord will not forsake us.
He will not forsake us.
If we will put our trust in Him,
if we will pray to Him,
if we will live worthy of His blessings,
He will hear our prayers.

- President Gordon B. Hinckley -
(From the funeral program for Marjorie Pay Hinckley, April 10, 2004)

Sunday, January 27, 2008

"I'm Yours" by Jason Mraz

Jason and I just love, love, love this song right now. Enjoy!

Friday, January 25, 2008

Going Above and Beyond

Today Jason and I went to the NICU at Valley Hospital here in Las Vegas to give the doctors Gavin's autopsy report. It was really difficult to walk down those halls again, but I am glad we went. It was so nice to talk with many of the staff members and to know that people still think about my sweet Gavin. The staff at Valley Hospital and Primary Children's Hospital were all so thoughtful and so many went above and beyond for Gavin and our little family.

Last night when I got home there was a box waiting on my doorstep - it was from one of Gavin's nurses from PCMC. When I opened the box I found a beautiful wall hanging with Gavin's name painted on. The words that ran along the sides said, "Twinkle twinkle little star. Do you know how loved you are? Up above the world so high. Like a diamond in the sky." It was a small act, but it was really more than she had to do. Many of the blessings we have received during this time have been through small acts of kindness where people went above and beyond what they were asked to do.
The nurses and respiratory therapists took so much time to teach us one-on-one so that we would be able to take care of Gavin. . . the doctors fought so hard for Gavin (and us) even though I know looking back, that they could see what the future held for Gavin . . . the social workers and insurance representatives who helped us find a place to transfer Gavin and a place to stay while we were away from home . . . family and friends who helped soften the blows of reality when it was just too hard to bear alone . . . and especially my mother who spent every single day with me and even moved away from her home so I wouldn't be all alone. All of these people were put in our path to bless our lives and be a support for us. I know I will never ever be able to repay everyone for all the kindness they have given our family, but I want everyone to know how much we appreciate all you do and have done for our family. There are good people in this world - and we feel blessed to know so many of you!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Candy Cane Lip Gloss

Call me crazy . . . but I am crazy for this Candy Cane flavored lip gloss from Philosophy! I found this lip gloss at the Nordstrom's Philosophy counter during the Christmas season. Now that I have used it - I am ADDICTED and I don't think I will ever buy another lip gloss. Anyway, just thought I'd let everyone in on my new and fun find!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

I miss The Office

Last night Jason and I were watching a re-run of The Office and it reminded me of a blog my sister in law Trisha wrote . . . Trish I agree. We need more Office episodes! I was laughing out loud last night as I watched the re-run and I am pretty sure I am having withdrawals!!!!!! We need more Office episodes!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

"He'll Carry You"

Sometimes prayers are answered so quickly and mercies are in the works before you even ask for them. I just have to share how my prayer was answered on Sunday. Sundays are hard days for us. Jason thinks they are his worst day of the week. It's difficult to be surrounded by so many people when your feelings are still SO on the surface (however; our ward is AMAZING and I know they are totally there for us). Sunday morning I was really dreading going to church - I know that's bad of me, please don't judge me. :) But, we went of course, and I am so glad I did. During the Sacrament I remember telling Heavenly Father, "Please don't let me feel alone today. Please give me some type of comfort." Well, a new family just moved into our ward and they were the Sacrament Meeting speakers. As they started speaking they talked about their little girl who passed away from some severe birth defects - kind of like the ones Gavin had. At once I realized Heavenly Father knew my prayer and requests before I even asked for them. He knew I needed to hear from someone who understood what I was going through. But most of all . . . the musical number hit home for me. I am such a sucker for music. I just think the lyrics are so beautiful. All of us have our own struggles - some are very obvious to the outside world and there are some that no one can see. All are equally challenging. I just thought we could all benefit from the words of this song - so I posted them below. Oh - and I love this picture!
"He'll Carry You"

He knows your heart
He knows your pain
He knows the strength it took just too simply breathe today
He sees the tears that you cry
He knows your soul is aching to know why
He hears your prayers each humble word
When you said you couldn’t face another day he understood
He knows the path that you will find
Though you felt alone he’s never left your side

Chorus:He knew there’d be moments when no earthly words could take away your sorrow
And no human eyes could see what you’re going through
When you’ve taken your last step and done all that you can do
He will lift your heavy load and carry you

He’ll bring you peace and leave you hope
And in the darkest night he’ll comfort you
Until you know the sun will rise and each new day
You will have the strength to live again

Chorus: And when there are moments when no earthly words can take away your sorrow
And no human eyes could see what you’re going through
When you’ve taken your last step and done all that you can do
He will lift your heavy load and carry you

He hears you when you’re crying in the night
He hears you when your soul longs to find
Till the morning will come
And the light of the dawn reassures

Chorus:That in the moments when no earthly words can take away your sorrow
And no human eyes could see what you’re going through
When you’ve taken your last step and done all that you can do
He will lift your heavy load and carry you

Monday, January 21, 2008


I finally have a chance to blog about our vacation to Hawaii! It was so nice for us to get away and just "be". The past six months have been a whirlwind of up and downs and we really needed time to take off and recuperate. It was nice to leave everything behind and have it just be . . . us. It was the first time in a LONG time I have felt like I was able to relax and "deal" (if you ever can) with the events that have surrounded our lives. We had great intentions of surfing, exploring, snorkeling, etc. but when it came down to it - we just SAT. However, we were sitting on the beach, so I guess that is okay. :)
Here are a few (yes, these are just a few) of the pictures from our week in Hawaii.
Amazing picture, huh? Jason and I spent the evening debating over who took this picture. I am still pretty sure I did.
We stayed at the Hilton Waikoloa Village on the Big Island (thanks dad for the Hilton points) It was such a GORGEOUS resort. You had to get to your suite tower by a tram or boat. It was truly an escape from reality.

Nothin' like a little Tiki Man love!

Jason and I went and bought sunglasses with the money we had put aside for surfing so we could sit at the beach for longer amounts of time. HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

On the Waikoloa Resort's beach they had hammocks set up in between palm trees. Yeah, that's where we spent about 80% of our time! Lazy, I know . . .

Just havin' fun!

One morning we did venture out of the resort and we did a temple session at the Kona Temple. What a cool experience.

And one night we went sailing. A word to the wise . . . don't go sailing on windy nights. That's all I will say about that.

We rented a convertible this time. Yes, don't laugh . . . it's a Sebring. Apparently they were all out of Mustangs AND PT Cruisers! Just call us Michael Scott!

We took this photo at a black sand beach.

One of the days we drove to the volcano. It's supposed to be one of the world's most active volcanoes. Jason is standing by one of the steam vents in this picture. On the two hour drive back I found out Jason was pretty disappointed in the volcano. Apparently he expected more than a large hole in the ground . . . I guess he envisioned little tiki men dancing around spewing lava. Hmmmmm . . .

The lagoon at our resort had about six or seven sea turtles you could swim with. It was a lot of fun.

Here we are at the National Park "Place of Refuge." In "ancient" days people who were accused of crimes could escape to this point. If they made it here the priest freed them of all their trespasses and they were deemed free again. I think that means a little more to me now - it truly was a place of refuge for us.

Ok - I hope I haven't bored you with all of these pictures, but we really had a good time.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

A Little More Information About My Gavy

I know it's been awhile since I have posted . . . Jason and I have been gone for a week in Hawaii. The Hawaii post will come later, but we received some pretty important news regarding our little Gavin the night before we left. On Wednesday January 9th I received a call from PCMC with the final results of Gavin's tests and autopsy. Perhaps some of you may disapprove of the idea of an autopsy - I know I wasn't too fond of the idea either - but we knew this was one way we could possibly receive some answers to Gavin's issues. We knew it would also help determine whether or not it will be wise to have any more children - especially if we found the issue was a genetic deformity.

We received the test reports Thursday evening and we had a conference call with Dr. Coulter (the admitting physician for Gavin at PCMC NICU). I could go on and on about the findings, but the overall diagnosis was still not identified as a genetic abnormality. They looked into many different syndrome clusters, but Gavin did not seem to fit into any of them perfectly. (Tell me something we didn't already know, huh!) However, they looked into Gavin's brain and central nervous system. From a gross (or outer) examination Gavin's brain was developed correctly, however he didn't not have an identifiable thyroid gland and his pituitary gland was extraordinarily small. When they examined the tissues of the brain on a microscopic level (looking at the cells) they found that the cells didn't form correctly. Even the most primitive part of the brain wasn't formed correctly on a microscopic level - thus making reflexes like gagging, sucking, swallowing, and even breathing difficult. In fact, Gavin did not see, smell, taste or hear - the only sense he had was touch. I have one nurse of Gavin's from PCMC that I still keep in contact with. Every time she sends an email she talks about how Gavin would hold out his little right hand waiting for someone to hold his hand. What a calm, sweet, patient boy. He knew that someone would be there to touch him if he would just hold his hand out . . . what a wonderful lesson to all of us. All we have to do is hold out our hand, just as Gavin did - and the Savior will be there to comfort us.

So in short (as my dad stated it) Gavin's problems were most likely the result of faulty formation of his brain and central nervous system during the early days of formation for no particular reason. This is know as a congenital birth defect that caused other problems and abnormalities. There was also evidence that with each breathing/blue "episode" Gavin was developing more and more brain damage. In summary, Dr. Coulter told us that Gavin's brain and central nervous system defects were inconsistent with human life.

Jason asked Dr. Coulter what the normal life expectancy was of a child with issues such as Gavin's. Dr. Coulter indicated that children with this type of problem usually are miscarried or stillborn - and if they make it to "mortality" they may live days or weeks - usually not months - never years. At that moment I realized that all of the petitioning and requests that were made on Gavin's behalf was truly answered from the Lord. We were given three months with a little boy who had a body that never should have operated for that long. We were able to touch, love and hold him. I was able to be a mother to a perfect baby boy who continues to be the light of my life. There isn't a day I don't miss my blonde haired, blue eyed sweet Gavy - but I do know a few things about his personality. I know that he was was a peaceful example of patience and he was a true fighter. Gavin did not have to be here - he remained with us until we understood his plan. He was a fighter and he stayed here to make his mom and dad happy and give us wonderful memories. I look back at the three months we had with Gavin, and I know that I have eternity to look forward to.

PS - Don't you just love this picture? It was difficult to read Gavin's facial expressions - but there were times I KNEW he was happy and excited - this was one of them. I love my little bug.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Why I love my brothers and sister . . .

Matt, me, James, Becca and Jason

I just had to post this picture. This is why I love my siblings so much! We are quite the bunch, huh?!

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

New Years Eve Wii Tournament

Most people who are in Vegas on New Years Eve are partying on the strip . . . but the Mortensen family. . . we play the Wii! We had a lot of fun on New Years Eve with my family. Grandma made dinner, dad made a PHENOMENAL raspberry dutch oven cobbler and then we had a Wii Bowling Tournament. We bowled for a free airplane ticket - yep, that's right. . . a free airplane ticket to anywhere from dad! Jason set up the brackets and we all joined in the fun. Much to our surprise . . . Grandma was an amazing bowler! Infact, the final championship was James against Grandma! James won, but he said his heart was racing because of his competition from Grandma. After the bowling tournament, we sat in the jacuzzi and stayed up until midnight. It was so much fun!
Here are a few pictures from the eventful night:

Lauren, James, Jason and Dad started off the tournament

We love how dramatic mom gets bowling!

The championship duo - Grandma and James

Becca and her boyfriend Stephen