Last Friday Landon and I headed out to Utah with his parents for Trever's graduation from the U. We left Thursday afternoon, spent the night in Nevada and made it to Salt Lake with an hour to change, check into the hotel and meet up with Avery to TRAX up to campus.
Two years earlier we were gathered in the same building celebrating Landon earning his degree in Psychology. The year after was Avery at UVU and then this year Trever. As we all sat together and watched the grads gather in and the commencement began I started to feel a bit emotional. Turns out I like graduations almost as much as weddings, which is a lot. I held it together, through students earning their PhD, wives + babies in the hallway running up to hug their graduate, and other tender moments. But I'll admit I teared up a bit, whether from being startled or from the outpouring of love, as the three rows down below us unabashedly erupted with cheering + noisemakers for their graduate. I could just feel their pride for her and oh, it was beautiful. One of the guys turned around and up towards us, and proudly said, "sorry, [for the noise] that's my sister!" I loved that for that large family, it wasn't just a bachelor's degree.
I spent a good portion out in the hallway with Paityn, but we made some friends. She's got her waving down, which is a great icebreaker. We made it back to our seat just in time to see Trever's line standing up from their seats and heading down to receive their degrees. In the morning, Landon had an adventurous hike as the sun rose on Mount Olympus and returned back to our hotel room with blistered feet and a large appetite for breakfast downstairs. After packing our things we met with Avery + Trever and headed over to the Pet Super Adoption that was running that weekend. The shelter they volunteer for every weekend was there, along with 30+ other shelters in the area. The website explains it best, "It’s a cooperative effort where shelters and rescue groups come together in a free, fun, festival-like atmosphere to find homes for hundreds of animals during one exciting weekend. It’s a fun way to meet a huge variety of adoptable animals in a celebratory setting."
I made it my mission to try to find a type of dog that fit with me. Not being an animal person at all, and still fairly scared of most, I knew there still HAD to be some type of dog out there for me. By the end I'd found a few I could call cute, or that had amazing eyes, but mostly left with a larger appreciation of pets and the role they play in families. Paityn however loved them all. From the large fluffy malemute to the tiny little puppies.
Pizzeria Limone for lunch then the rest of the afternoon playing at Liberty Park. That park was such a central location to me for my few years in SLC, whether with roommates on Sunday afternoons, or with my growing relationship with Landon, from our first date to our proposal, to spending time with friends there later when we were married. It felt so good to not only be back in Utah but spending time in places that used to be such a part of our lives. Then just like that, by late afternoon on Saturday it was time to head home.
Though such a quick trip to Utah it was so good to be there for Trever's graduation. Here's to hoping I'm not far behind with mine!