Saturday, July 31, 2010


We had visitors come to Texas!!! Nana, Papa, and uncle TJ came to see us after having a Flooring America conference in Houston. Too bad is was only a week after we had been with them in Utah, but we'll take em when we can get em! We had so much fun and were finally able to get out and have some good ol Texas fun.
(The boys were obsessed with TJ's i.....something. One of those "i" things)

We went and took a tour of the new Cowboys stadium. Holy crap. They are not kidding about the size of that screen! I can only imagine what a Garth concert would be like at this place....

Playing on the field

Fun in the end zone!

Jared wishing he was a skanky Cowboys cheerleader
                                  Trevor, Jared, and Parker in the player's lockerroom                                
                                They boys holding a press conference after the big game                                           
                             We also braved the insane heat and spent the day at 6 FLAGS!
It was soooo hot!
This kid is fearless on the rides! He was so sad that he was barely too short for some of the rollercoasters.

He somehow talked his dad and Nana into riding this one with him. This is when they started out. Notice their smiles?

A couple of seconds later....not such a good idea after all :)

And Tage was heartbroken because he was too little for that one. So sad.
But daddy saved the day and won these...
By doing this!...His kids were so proud!
It was so much fun!
Nana, Papa, and TJ left 2 days before Tage's 2nd birthday so we had a little celebration before we sent them off.
He's so funny
We'll miss you guys! Hopefully next time you come you won't have to sleep on a couch in a tiny living room!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The journey back home

Here's some advice. Don't EVER fly stand by, husbandless, with 2 small children, in July. Just don't do it. Save yourself the stress, grief, and sweet, precious, TIME, and buy a regular old ticket. It's just not worth it. A big shout out to our wonderful family for letting us crash at their house for a few days (Lesha), and for driving us to and from the airport several days in a row (Wendy and Brenda). That's right. We spent THREE long days in the airport before we got on a flight home. The good news: we had someone to pick us up at the end of each day and take us to a comfortable, free,  place to sleep. The bad news: Our luggage made it back to Dallas on the first day with all of our clothes. Sooo, we had to wear the same clothes for 3 days in a row :) I actually don't think I've worn the pink dress I had on since. I look at it and shudder at the thought. Luckily I had extras for the boys in my carry on. But I was stuck. In the same pink dress for THREE long days. Not sure what I was thinking.
(Wish it could have been me taking the nap)
Looking back now I can kind of laugh. But at the time it was devistating. I missed Jared, the kids hadn't seen their dad in 3 weeks, I had a stroller, 3 heavy carry on's, a toddler who wouldn't stay by me, and a very, very bored 5 year old.
I was done being a single mom and we all needed the comfort of our own lives back. And for any of you wondering, crying does not get you your way. I am not an emotional person, at all. But I think I started bawling every time those dang gate checkers denied me. I was an emotional wreck by this point in our vacation and so, so ready to be done. On one of the days I refused to pay the $4 to use the luggage cart (seriously, what a rip off!!!). The carry on's were too heavy for Parker and we had left the stroller in Nana's car. So I was carrying 3 heavy bags, gripping Tage's hand for dear life, and trying to rush around the airport from gate to gate giving my sob story to anyone who looked like they might have sympathy and get me on a plane. No luck. I was at my worst. So I threw my bags down, threatened the boys with their lives if they moved, slid into one of those old phone booths, and cried like a baby. I couldn't believe that I was the freak show that everyone was watching. You know how the airport is usually fun because you can people watch and make fun of all the crazies you see? Ya, I was the crazy. And nobody ever offered to help me (probably because they were scared). They just stared.

(Watching a movie)

(I chased him all around the airport while he pushed an empty stroller. But it kept him from screaming!)

We finally got on the last flight on the 3rd day. We were just a little more than excited.

And the boys were even more excited to see their daddy!

Texas has never been so welcoming :)

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Saying goodbye

(Mom and Dad, I hope this post doesn't make you sad. Since I am actually posting it loooong after you've already left on your mission. We miss you :( You're really the only reason I'm still blogging so hopefully I'm caught up with our current lives before you get home)

Saying goodbye to my mom and dad was a very strange thing. Since we would be going back to Texas in a few days, we were saying goodbye to everyone. So it was hard for my brain to wrap around the idea that it would be a really long time before we would see my parents. And that they would be so far away. Sitting here writing about it now makes me cry big, sad, tears, but at the time we were all so excited for them. I'm so happy I caught this on camera. This is Parker showing his Grandma how tall he will be when she gets home.

And I LOVE this picture of Tage and my mom. Messy face and all.

These boys will sure miss their Grandma and Grandpa.

And my mom will sure miss these dogs.....and her grand kids :)

Thank you mom and dad for setting this example for us. Your entire lives have been dedicated to serving others and our family has been, and will be blessed because of that. I have a feeling your service in the missionary field has only just begun.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Nordfelt reunion

We were lucky enough to still be in Utah for the Nordfelt reunion in Moab! This is my mom's side of the family and they never disappoint in the entertainment department. We ALWAYS have a good time with these guys. No matter what. Plus, my uncles feed us like royalty, so how can we not enjoy ourselves?
However, the Springer's would not be Springer's without bringing a little drama. The majority of us (Norm, Dana, Wendy, Ben, Lesha, Lake, Kenzie, Sedelle, Freeman, Jill, Parker, Tage) decided to rent a huge stinky van that smelled of cat litter, and a big RV to pull up the mountain so we would have a home base while camping. The other's (Andy, Kelly, Hayden, Cole, Hudson, Casey, LaTisha, Jared, Daiana, Leila, Conrad) met up there. It's a pretty good climb to the camping spot, but we were assured that the van pulling the RV would for sure make it. No problem.
(Parker asleep on the way there with a super unsafe seat belt job)
Well there was a problem. Half way up we knew we would not make it. We were barely moving and getting slower. The dirt road was very narrow with a good size slope on one side. Nobody really wanted to tumble down it with the massive RV on top of us.
We started to get quite the line of cars behind us since they could not go around. Nobody was very happy about this. We knew the campsite was close but not exactly sure how close and we couldn't get a hold of any of my uncles to come give us a boost. So I was volunteered to run up the hill and find someone at the campsite to help. Since I had just done it at the Wasatch back it should be easy right? Wrong! Running up hills is apparently not my thing. Not sure how far I had to run, but uncle Craig picked me up about 100 yards from my destination and drove me back down to get the others. They were able to pull us free and we made it to our spot, happy to be alive :)

First things first, wrestle uncle "Superman"! (Kirtly)
Next on the list was to get rid of as many cow pies as we could. My dad was really good at this.
Here is our home base. Stinky or not, it was sure nice to have.
Most of the group around the fire,
It was a little difficult to be there as a single mom without Jared. I have a bit of a dirt phobia. So when Tage was taking "dirt baths" ever other minute, I got a little stressed. I know (insert Casey's pretend Mom voice), "He's a boy, let him play in the dirt for goodness sake!", and , "You're camping! Everyone is going to be dirty!". Heard it the whole time we were there. But seriously, look at him!!! He was a disaster. However, I don't know that I have ever seen the kid so happy and content. He could have played in that tiny dirt pile forever. Good thing Grandpa scooped up all those cow pies! 
Hudson got in on the action as well
Besides scooping up cow pies and taking dirt baths, here is how we spent our days,

Flag football & baseball for both young and old (check out my cute niece Sedelle with all of those boys!)
Ate delicious food cooked by our chefs (my mom's brother's), Kirtly, Craig, and Dennis

Rafting down the river (Katelin, Sedelle, Parker, Cole)
Kelly Springer and I stayed at camp with the munchkins (Tage, Kanyon, Hudson) and went for walks,
Saw some deer,
rode in the ranger

                                             And took naps. (even Kelly and I. Sweeet!)

Went hiking through "dangerous Indian territory"
Tage fell asleep on my shoulder so I had to carry him the whole time.
Saw dinosaur tracks (Kenzie, Sedelle, Hayden, Parker)
Visited "John" (Don't worry Wendy, the person in this picture shall remain anonymous)
Went fishing (Cole, Lake, Hayden, Sedelle, Kenzie, Parker)

Went on 4 wheeler rides with uncle Urb (Jared, Cole, Parker)
And ranger rides with...everyone (Freeman, Sedelle, Kenzie, Tage, Leila, Daiana) I love this picture.
And this one :)
Attacked uncle Homer every chance we got (Casey, Tage, Freeman)
Relaxed (Tage Hudson, Freeman)
Jill, Wendy, Casey
Maybe a little too much relaxin. Haha! (Lesha, Casey, Dad)
Consumed hundreds of smores
Listened to Dad sing "the missionary song", "the other day I saw a bear" and many more classics around the fire
Did a little campfire snuggling. Please don't judge us for our appearence. Not only do we play in the dirt while camping, we also wear mismatching clothes. It's cool.
Tish did some last minute hair cut jobs for the soon to be missionaries,
Saw some amazing scenery
Spent some much needed time with our wonderful family. Here are all of the Springer cousins piled in the ranger for a terrible cousin picture. Sorry mom, we tried :) (Back row: uncooperative Freeman, helpful Kenzie, Cole, Parker. Front row: Leila, Tage, Hudson, Hayden, Lake, Sedelle. Not pictured: Conrad)
And many aunts, uncles, cousins, and cousins kids. Wish I would have gotten more pics of everyone. (Dad, Craig, Mom, Dixie)
One of my favorite parts of the week was when uncle Kirtly presented his "Indian hunting leaders" with special surprises...which just so happened to be knives for the younger kids, and full on swords for the older ones. Real ones. I was a little nervous about my 5 year old son having a pocket knife until I saw my 11 year old nephew with a sword. Yikes! Holy cow the looks on these kids faces when he called them up one by one for their "brave acts" in leading us away from the indians was the sweetest thing ever.
Another sweet thing was watching my parents say goodbye to everyone before we left to go home. They were leaving on their mission 2 days later so they knew they weren't going to see anyone for a while. This is a picture of my mom and uncle Larry. He passed away from cancer 2 months after this was taken.
It was a great trip. But we were happy to be home to soft beds and showers. This last picture of Sedelle pretty much sums up how we all felt...Thanks for the good time Nordfelts! Hopefully we'll see more of you here in 2 years!