Category Archives: travel

Sapps in Salmon!

Trey’s family was just here! It was such a great (albeit whirlwind) visit. The best part was definitely seeing ALL of the cousins together again. And especially all of us Salmon Sapps getting to bond with Max.

Let’s do it again soon!


More Summer

It’s been pretty great, so far. Can’t believe how fast it’s going!


So, Trey and his college-buddy Tony came up with this crazy idea for all six of us to visit Spokane (6 hour drive from Salmon) and stay with he and his lovely family. I have to say I think it was brave for them to take us all in. I can’t say enough how much fun we had. They were amazing and generous hosts and spoiled us rotten!

The Spornbergers Take Salmon

…and it wasn’t a complete disaster!

My parents came to see us at the end of May and we had such an amazing time with them. We definitely redeemed last November’s trip when everyone was so sick and Mom ended up in the ER. They got to see some of the country and we just had great, quality time! We took them to some of our favorite places, ate some of our favorite foods, and made some new favorite memories!

Life Lately

Dentist Trip

Going to the dentist is a bit more of an ordeal than it was in Marietta. For the kids, anyway. There’s a perfectly fine dentist in town, but we wanted the kids to go to a pediatric dentist. Fortunately, we found a brother team in Idaho Falls: pediatric dentist and orthodontist in one office. We’re going to need both.

The office is so cool. It’s set up like an old-timey train station. So, while they had to wait, they had fun playing. They all did great, but Trey and I walked out of the office and just held each other in the parking lot for a few minutes. Madeline had five baby teeth pulled to make room for her ginormous adult teeth that are already coming in. Sean had three cavities and David had eight. EIGHT. I’ve never felt like such a failure! We have really cracked down since then. We help them floss every day now. And we’re making sure that they’re actually brushing twice a day, which I’m pretty sure they weren’t doing before. Ahem!

Girl Scouts

Madeline joined the Girl Scouts back in September! She has been loving it. She just finished her first year selling cookies. She is a natural sales-woman! With virtually no help from her mom, she did amazing! I took this picture when I was putting her badges on her sash. It really took me back.


Our TWELTH Anniversary!

It kind of went by in a blur this year! Trey got me some beautiful purple tulips (my favorite and we had them in our wedding!), we got fish and chips from Bertrams, and I baked a pound cake. Pretty exciting stuff! Not to sound too cheesy, but it really just keeps getting better and better. There’s nobody that makes me laugh like he does. We’ve had plenty of ups and downs, but I really think our marriage is stronger than ever. I’m very thankful for such a man. These are the only two pictures I took on our anniversary: the cake and a car selfie on our way to church. We are so glamorous!

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Church Stuff

We love both of our churches. Well, all three! They are all spoiling us. There’s lots of exciting things happening in our ministry. Here’s David and his buddy Dallen at church a few weeks ago. The second picture I took this morning. Shaking my head.

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I’m still enjoying teaching the kids’ Sunday School class. Trey preached this morning. We genuinely love these people.

Recently, the Men’s Ministry of SVBC hosted the church’s biggest outreach event of the year: The Beast Feast. Which is exactly what it sounds like! The men and boys had a great time, which gave the girls’ and I time to ourselves.

So thankful that these two have each other! They are blessed, indeed.

The 2015 Plague

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It came on all of a sudden. It included vomiting, high fevers, and upper respiratory stuff. It hit Charli and David. It lasted six days. Six. I’ve never had a kid have a fever for that long! It was a nasty bug, but we are all on the mend. Thankful for good doctors and nurse friends that can give us advice!

Jackson, Montana

For Sean’s birthday he requested a day at the BIG hot springs in Jackson, MT. It’s a couple hours from Salmon (near Big Hole and Bannack, for you geography fans). It was a lovely, relaxing day. We were even able to stop at Dairy Queen and the fancy Safeway grocery store (complete with a Starbucks) in Dillon.

I didn’t take a ton of pictures, but I did get a few. These were taken outside of the lodge where the hot springs are, in Jackson.

Je suis Charli(e)

And finally, Je suis Charlie! We just had to stop and take this picture outside of Bertram’s today, after lunch.


Hope this post finds you and yours well and happy! We sure are enjoying this Salmon Spring. We’re looking forward to Easter, more family visits, and a crazy busy summer!


Idaho Falls

Every couple of months we like to get the heck out of dodge. On a day to day basis we don’t miss all of the restaurants and shopping, but ever so often we just get that urge to be around people! It’s also what I asked for, for my birthday. Before Christmas Trey had booked us a suite at a hotel right on the Snake River in Idaho Falls and we all loved it! Pool, breakfast, our own room! Perfection. So, that’s what he and my parents gave me for my birthday.

So, Friday afternoon right after work we headed out of town. Like, Trey had the van packed, everyone bucked, and it was facing south when I pulled in the driveway! Haha! We dropped off Buttercup at the Doggy hotel and then we hit the open road.

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We drove through Wendy’s that night, which was a special treat for the kids!

The next morning, Trey let me rest and he took the kids down to the pool and to breakfast. It was so nice to be lazy! After we all got ready, we headed out to do some shopping and Chick-fil-A eating!

First, we walked around a little park right next to the hotel. I can’t wait to see it in Spring. You can tell it will be beautiful.

We hit up a Starbucks, which still had some Christmas Blend in stock! And then it was on to Target!

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Everywhere we went on Friday, David wanted to find the Legos. Because he doesn’t already have a million…


I take pictures of books I want (but can’t necessarily justify buying at the moment when I have a million on my shelves waiting to be read). Who knew Mary Poppins was a series?!

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We hit up several other stores that day, but my favorite was Hastings! This was a store my friend and coworker Jennifer told me I would love. And she was so right! Books, music, movies, comics, coffee! It was amazing. I could’ve spent hours in there!

Saturday we tied up a few loose ends, ate at Chick-fil-A one more time and headed back to Salmon. It was a beautiful drive. I love that you can see the Tetons when you first leave Idaho Falls. And Trey and I just love road trips. It’s when we seem to have those big “couple” conversations. And the kids even got along! Win win!

Trey had some work on the plumbing to do when we got home and I unpacked. We had done a Winco run, so had a ton of groceries. Here’s some of the things we got this weekend.

We hadn’t been back in Salmon for five minutes when David lost something very important! A TOOTH! It’s his first top one and he looks even cuter and more mischievous than usual!


And Buttercup was very happy to be home with us.


It was a great weekend, but there’s definitely no place like home!

A Day in the WESTERN WILD (Big Sky Country Edition)

I hate to brag, but this is going to be a very pretty post. Because today was a very pretty day. Because God is just cool like that and He made all this stuff and it’s beautiful. We drove to Dillon, Montana. Nobody enjoys a road trip like Trey and I (our kids definitely don’t). We drove over Bannack Pass on the way there and Lost Trail Pass on the way back. We saw snow, clouds, sun, rainbows, animals, historical sights, people, new places (I’m definitely a fan of the grocery store there. It’s SAFEway, not SAVEway like we have here. And quite a difference. Wal-Mart is to Saveway as Target is to Safeway), mountains, rock formations, and ice fishermen.

We fit a lot into this day! And we will definitely be heading to Dillon again one day!

Photographic Proof!

My parents were actually here! We didn’t get many pictures, because there just wasn’t much to photograph (wahhhh, boohoo). After mom’s little visit to the ER, she started to improve and we had a couple of normal evenings where we got to eat together and just be together.

I have to say, I’m glad this trip is over and now we can just look forward to the next one, with NO illness!


So, my parents’ trip and Thanksgiving did not go quite the way we’d planned. And by “not quite,” I mean not even a little bit… not even in the same realm… not at all! And, not even in a way that’s like, “oh, this wasn’t what was planned, but didn’t it turn out fun?” Nope.

In fact, we hadn’t planned much. After all, it’s November in the Idaho mountains. It’s not like we could go driving all over the country like we usually do with visitors. We really just planned a simple couple of weeks. Reading, watching movies, puzzles and games with the kids, good food. There’s a parade that we wanted to see on Main Street, and the Festival of Trees, but that was really the extent of it. Mostly, we just wanted to be together.

Trey had planned to catch a ride to Idaho Falls last Thursday so that he could ride back to Salmon with them. Wednesday night we could tell that Sean was getting sick and Thursday morning it was very clear that Trey would have to stay home with him. Also by that time, Trey had started to feel sick. Thursday afternoon, Sean was seen by the doctor. Trey was much worse. By the time I got home from work, they were both comatose in the bed. We decided my parents should stay at the motel in town, so they wouldn’t catch the sickness. We saw them briefly Thursday night for dinner. Friday, Charli and Madeline were showing symptoms. Trey and Sean were starting to be on the mend after medications. My parents spent some time at the house on Friday, but not really around the sick people.

Saturday morning I woke up and knew I had it. By Sunday, mom started showing symptoms. She has spent one night here since they arrived. The rest of the time they’ve been at the motel. This past week has been a bit of a blur. I missed work on Monday. Mom ended up in the ER today and I was seen at the clinic. The ER doc said that hers is completely unrelated to what we’ve all had, which made me feel a little less guilty at least.

We won’t be going back to Georgia for Christmas, so this visit was really supposed to scratch that itch to be with family. But, we haven’t really been able to be together. I find myself like an insomniac… you know how it goes, “if I fall asleep RIGHT now I’ll still get 4 hours of sleep.” Except, I’ve been like, “it’s okay! If everyone is all better tomorrow we still get 5 days with them.” Ugh, it’s just depressing.

I’ve definitely gone through the grieving process though (wow, that sounds dramatic!). The first few days were denial: I’m not that sick, we’re all going to be fine, Mom and Dad won’t get it. Then I moved on to anger: why me?! Why is this even happening? I give up! Then bargaining (honestly, I’m still here a little): maybe we can convince them to stay a little longer or to come for a month in the spring! There has to be some way to redeem this! Yesterday I hit depression. We ended up at the church (I love that SVBC hosts Thanksgiving meals to anyone who needs a meal or a place to go!). But, it was just a sad reminder that we weren’t with my parents. I came home and tore down all of the Fall and Thanksgiving decorations and put up Christmas, declaring to the kids that this, “is the worst Thanksgiving ever!” And today was acceptance. Seeing mom in the ER and just wanting so bad for her to be healthy and happy and if that place is her own home in Georgia, then I understand. I’m just ready for the whole thing to be over.

Here are some pictures from yesterday.

Going through the line. It was such a yummy meal and meant so much to us to have a place to go! And Trey was in minister-heaven as he got to talk to some people who really needed someone to talk to!



The Sapplings!


Good bye, Fall and Thanksgiving!


Last night, after getting rid of Fall, I was feeling pretty good. And we had a thawed 21-lb turkey that needed to be eaten, so I set to work cooking for us to eat on Friday. I made my mom’s famous sweet potato and green bean casseroles and my Grandma Spornberger’s dressing.

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This is the streusel topping for the sweet potatoes. Everyone’s lucky it made it to the table. So yummy!


I brined the turkey, which was new to me, but definitely made the turkey extra-yummy! The kids and I ate here and Trey took dinner to my parents motel for them. It just wasn’t the way I’d pictured our Thanksgiving meal, but I’ve accepted that. Like Marisa Tomei says in my favorite movie, Only You, “Life’s not like it is in the movies, is it?”

Forgive the whiny post. I really am grateful for so much. I’m especially thankful that I have a family to mourn loss of time with.

Happy 6th Birthday, David!

Dear David- Today, you are SIX years old! That is really hard to believe for your old mom. Six just seems awfully big to me. You came into this world six years ago a weekly earlier than expected! You’re the only one that did that. Madeline, Sean, and Charli were all a day late. And you’ve striven since Day One to establish your individuality in this family.

I always say that if the other kids got caught with their hand in the cookie jar, they’d immediately yank it out and start apologizing. Not my David! You would take the time I’d use to walk from the doorway to you to shove as many cookies in your mouth as possible. That’s just how you approach life.

You love life! You love playing and imagining and creating and learning. Right now your favorite toys are Legos, Superheroes, and any kind of dress up. Your favorite things to watch on TV are Star Wars and Ninjago. You love playing sports and playing outside. You are excelling at school (even if we might need to work on some of those behavior issues. Ahem). You are a joy!

You never stop. You are constant energy and motion. You are curious and fearless and I admire that. You don’t always know to not cross the line, but you’re learning. You are intense. You are funny. You can always make us laugh and you have no problem being the center of attention.

Your creative mind amazes me. You’re just a brilliant kid. You don’t wait around for a toy to appear, you make it if you want it! Your most recent creations were a house you built for Olaf and a light saber you made out of cardboard. You have an engineer’s brain. I don’t know what you’ll be when you grow up, but I could definitely see you getting into engineering.  But, you’re also so artistic. We always get comments on how advanced your artwork is.

You love your family and friends with every fiber of your being. You look up to Daddy and Sean and you are definitely a Daddy’s Boy. That’s okay, as long as you’ll snuggle me every once in a while.

You’re just a fantastic kid. From the top of your little auburn head, to your lonnnng eye lashes, to those stinky little boy feet, you are awesome! I couldn’t be prouder of you. You make me happy. You’ve challenged me. You’ve brought me to my knees in prayer. I love being your mom. I love hearing you laugh. I love watching you learn. Thank you for being you, Little Man!

My prayer for you in your seventh year is that you would increase, “in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man,” as our Lord did (Luke 2:52). I pray that you would seek to please Him and honor Him with all that you are. We are always here for you and will always love you.

What an adventure your last year was!

David, we love you so. We are so thankful you are part of this family. Life would be so boring without you. God bless you!

Love, Mommy