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The Travis and Jodi Downs Family

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08/01/2010 - Do you ever notice some things just seem to be meant to be? That thought occurred to me when I heard Travis and Jody Downs' story.

Travis was born and raised in Minnesota. After visiting extended family in Buffalo, Wyoming, Travis was invited to move to Buffalo along with his parents in 2002. His brother, Shawn, also moved to Wyoming and then DDD Exteriors was formed with their dad,

Jody was born and raised in Michigan and, after she began college in Michigan, her parents moved to Buffalo, Wyoming. After visiting Buffalo on Spring break she fell in love with the area and decided (in 2001) to move to Buffalo even though her parents had already moved back to Michigan. She worked at the Johnson-Sheridan Youth Home in Buffalo for two years.

In a new area and "alone", a local family that knew her parents invited her to join them for dinner after church and on all

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holidays. That family turned out to be Travis' uncle's family. It happened to be Easter of 2002 when Travis visited Buffalo with his parents before deciding to move there. And guess who he met at his uncle's house that day! "We would love to tell you it was love at first sight, but it wasn't," Jody shares. It was actually October or November before they started "hanging out" together regularly. Jody asked Travis to help with the Christmas pageant for their church. Travis was unable to say no and ... their relationship began.

Travis says after three weeks he knew Jody was the "one" and bought a ring. He proposed to Jody two days after Christmas and on June 14, 2003 Travis and Jody began their family.

After getting married they were given legal guardianshiop of a 16-year-old girl from the youth home. Hanna was a blessing so, in an effort to give her a new start and go where the work was taking them, they moved to Casper.

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Melody was born just a year later and she is almost six now. Christian is four, Grace is two and Victoria is 14 months. Hanna is now married and has two girls of her own and another one on the way. Melody is "Mommy's little helper" and loves to "see all the stars in the sky". Christian is the only boy and "he undoubtedly has a softer side," Jody says. He says his favorite thing about being in Casper is "being able to see all the rainbows". Grace is the little princess of the family and she would wear a dress everyday if she could. Victoria is the baby and can hold her own among her older siblings. She always has a smile on her face.

Travis and Jody now have several members of their family who have moved to Casper and the surrounding area. "Although we don't have a ton of family here, we have many friends that are as close as family. Our church family is just that -- family. Having attended Community of Hope for nearly three years, it is wonderful to be among family everywhere we go," Jody says.

Travis likes the small town "feel" of Casper and finds it entertaining to "see all the dogs in the back of everyone's trucks." He is grateful to all the supporters of his small, family-run business. "I really enjoy meeting people through DDD Exteriors and getting to know the homeowners as I am invited into their homes. I am often able to pray blessings over the homeowners after they have already blessed me with their business. It all comes full circle."

A long time ago Travis and Jody decided to do whatever they could to make it possible for Jody to stay home with their children. "I am a homemaker in every sense of the word and I enjoy it. Most days, as any mother of four small children can attest, I have already been rewarded more than I could have imagined."

Travis and Jody agree: "Casper is a wonderful place to live and God has been good to us here. Why would we ever leave?"

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