Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Are we there yet?

It has to get better now. . . We repeated that phrase MANY times on our what turned into our 24 hour travel down to Texas.  Seeing our awesome family, visiting Magnolia Market, eating Tex-Mex and real bbq, we had been looking forward to this trip for weeks! That was what we had to keep reminding ourselves as we went through this hellish journey.

We left at 2 PM, which gave us plenty of time to make our 12:45 AM flight.  Driving 5 hours down to the Las Vegas with a 4 month old baby, no problem, we just did that for Thanksgiving and Baby L had been perfect so we weren't worried.  Well Mother Nature had a different plan for us.  Keiton, who is from Star Vally, where it snows like 300 of the 365 days of the year said this was the worst storm that he has ever driven in :/

We barley got out of Utah County, when traffic came to a complete stop on the freeway.  We sat there for OVER AN HOUR and we didn't have any service so we had no idea what in the heck was going on. Let me tell you, that was the most annoying hour and when my road rage started raising.  We finally started crawling and pasted the culprits, a semi that had spun off the road and about 5 cars that got stuck.

The snow was hitting SO HARD, there were times when we finally got up to 40 miles per hour and let me tell you, we felt like we were flying. The roads were so bad, we counted over 75 cars that spun off the road.  Some crashed into rails, some fell into ditches and I was so sure we were going to be next. In fact, there was time when we started spinning. I was SO scared but luckily there were no cars around us and Keiton was calm in a crisis and corrected the car.  We were fine and Baby L was sleeping like a log in the backseat but, I cried for the next 30 minutes.  It was so hard, the roads were so bad we couldn't stop or else our car would get stuck, so we had to keep going at snail pace, passing so many cars/semi-trucks that spun off and were stuck.

Around Cedar City, right as the roads were the worst, Google Maps informed us that we would be arriving at 12:40 AM. Shoot. There was no way we were going to make it. We were beyond frustrated but we couldn't stop so we crawled on. Finally we dropped out of the mountains and the rain turned into ice.  The hatred I have for snow increased exponentially and we vowed we were NEVER going to drive in the snow EVER again.

Luckily Keiton speeds like crazy so we were able to shave off the time we would be arriving to 12:05.  There was hope.  We could do this if we ran like crazy.  We had it all planned out and we were ready to make this flight!  We pulled up, Keiton took care of the valet, I took Baby L and ran to security.  We rushed through, Keiton took Baby L and I ran down a flight of stairs, to the train that took us the terminal C, up a flight of stairs and all the way down the hall, to the very last gate.  Stupid Gate 26.  Out of breath, we reached the counter and there was no worker in sight.  What the heck, it was 12:30 in the dot, we had 5 minutes until they shut the doors. We made it, the plane was there, but did they load early?

We had to hunt down a worker but we found out our flight was delayed.  No notice anywhere, would have been good to know.  We sit down and every couple of hours there was an announcement "your pilot is stuck in a snow storm in Colorado but will be here in 2 hours."  2 hours would come and they would announce the pilot never left and would be delayed another 2 hours.  The annoying thing was they knew our flight was going to be delayed even longer because the stupid pilot wasn't even in the same state, but they NEVER told us until after we were supposed to leave.  Finally on the screen it said our flight was cancelled, they never came on the intercom to make an announcement. STUPID FRONTIER thought they could nonchalantly hide the fact we weren't getting on a plane.  Well we noticed, we all noticed.

I have NEVER seen so many angry people. We were all FROZEN (the LV air port doesn't believe in heating) sleeping on the nasty floor, we were tired and upset.  Frontier wouldn't do anything to compensate their cancelled flight.  Not a thing. They were not transparent the whole night and not accommodating. FRONTIER is literally the worst EVER. We ended up booking a panicked last second flight, that was so dang expensive.  But hey we were going to make it to Texas, even if it was the last thing we did.  

Our new flight took off at 8:30 AM.  After a long night, freezing cold and so unbelievably tired we got on the plane and we were on our way!! "It has to get better now." Right when we finished that sentence we hit some pretty bad turbulence.  Just our luck...

But somehow Baby L was PERFECT, the WHOLE time.  Singing and sleeping that whole time!  Even though it was the worst, scariest, and most frustrating experience of my entire life we saw so many little miracles.  The fact that Baby L didn't scream in the awful weather, or plane ride in itself was huge.  But when we went over to the Southwest counter to buy our tickets they needed Baby L's birth certificate.  Of course I don't travel with that.  So with no proof of birthday we couldn't get a ticket for her and we had to turn around and go back home.  BUT somehow I happened to grab her insurance card, which has her birthday printed right on it! I don't know how that happened but that was a HUGE miracle! Also the biggest miracle of them all, we made it safe and sound!  It made our arrival and seeing family that much sweeter! 

Moral of the story, Frontier is the WORST most unaccommodating airline ever and miracles happen! We are currently in the process of making memories in Texas, so stay tuned for the adventures to come!

Monday, December 12, 2016

The Year Without a Christmas Tree

Tis the season to be Jolly!

Ok so the last few weeks leading to finals are filled with projects, research papers and big assignments.  Lets be real, this time is crazy busy and sucks.  Well so does the sleep regression of our almost four month old which has conveniently popped up at the same time.  Joy to the world. . . Oh and if that wasn't enough Keiton has been SUPER sick this week.

This has been the toughest semester we have ever had and we are just hoping to pass our classes so we don't have to relive this heavy semester again!  Because of that, we haven't had time to go get a tree :/ I know pretty sad news.  When we told our Primary class they couldn't even comprehend it and this is basically the face they pulled haha

At first when another weekend came and went and the realization hit me that we won't have a tree for our cute baby's first Christmas I was sad.  But driving baby back and forth to my mom's house before and after class has given me a lot of time to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas and what the first Christmas was really like and I have decided there are worse things then not having a Christmas tree. (I mean look at that huge smile in her Christmas jammies)

If anything I think this Christmas has taught me that I get too wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of Christmas.  I start shopping the awesome deals on Thanksgiving and I worry more about having the perfect decorations, the perfect presents and somehow along the way I have squeezed out Christ as the main focus of Christmas.

President Monson taught "Because He came to Earth we can have joy and happiness in our lives and peace each day of the year! Because He came, there is meaning to our mortal existence." We have had the blessing to participate in the 'Light The World' initiative the Church has encouraged their members to be a part of.  That has been the sweetest blessing for our little family, each night we have had the opportunity to reflect on the life of Christ.  That has honestly made our Christmas season a lot more cheery and bright, despite having awful finals looming around us.

Even though we will for sure be getting a Christmas tree next year, when we look back at this first Christmas with our beautiful baby girl, I want her to know it was focused on Christ.  That we spent every possible moment we could with her even if that meant missing out on a few things.  I want her to know she is loved and that most importantly because of the love of the Savior we can be a family forever! I am grateful for the Savior's birth, life, sacrifice and love!

                                               Merry Christmas friends and family <3 <3   

 Love the Dockstader's 

 And our beautifully sassy edition!

Friday, December 9, 2016


Ok. Ok. I am super late to write about L's first Thanksgiving. . . BUT between L's sleep regression and the last few days of school we have been walking around like stressed out zombies!  After another night of battling baby girl to get to sleep, then proceeding to wake up every 3ish hours, I really needed to reflect on our week in paradise for the motivation to make it through this busy day!  

This is what the PERFECT week consisted of. . . 

Tahiti Village! Honestly this is the coolest place ever! A little slice of paradise on Las Vegas BLVD down just a bit from the strip. 

I'll take floating the lazy river and drinking pina coladas by the pool over the snow any day!  


The perfect study partner <3 And by study partner I mean napping buddy.

"Toes in the water. . . (feet) in the sand, not a care in the world"  

Date night on the Strip! Keiton and I LOVED walking New York NewYork, Excalibur and Caesars Palace.  

 AMAZING desserts from Carlos Bakery and Shake Shack!!

Food is essential to the perfect week!

Shopping! The outlet malls were right across the street from our condo so we might have walked over there a few times ;) 
*Disclaimer- this all of the Monroe's stuff, Keiton and I didn't go that crazy in Vegas 

AAAANNNNDDDD THIS GUY! He's really all I need for the perfect week but it was nice to get him all to myself and not have to share him with work and school!

 When can we do this again??