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Art City Trolley (Springdale, UT)

I accidentally scheduled this post for last week, so sorry if you saw it then…

While away on vacation, my husband and I stopped in a small town near Provo for dinner.  The Art City Trolley in Springville, looked to be about as close to a New Jersey Diner that we could get.

Atmosphere: B

The Art City Trolley is located on the main road.  There is a train car, which is attached to a restaurant.  Similar to the Clinton Station Diner, you can sit in the train car or building, depending on where the hostess sat you.  We were lucky enough to sit in the old train car.

art city trolley springville utah

The tables were outdated, and ours was wobbling.  It made for an awkward time eating between both of us, but other than that it was a nice restaurant. It had the character of an old diner.

Coffee: 

Since it was later at night, I wanted to order decaf coffee, so I wasn’t up.  The waitress informed me that the Art City Trolley only serves “caffeinated coffee”.  It’s one of the only restaurants I’ve been too, that doesn’t serve decaf coffee along with their caffeinated.

Service: B

The waitress was friendly, but our food took a little while to come out for the amount of people in the restaurant.

Food: A

The Art City Trolley has several options and a lot of unique and healthy options.  They are well known for their salads, so I decided to order that.

art city trolley springville utah

My salad was good.  It was filled with plenty of greens, toppings, and.  I was pleasantly surprised with how big the portion was too.  It was one of the better restaurant salads I’ve had.

I also ordered chili which was a white and creamy base.  I’ve never had anything like that, but it wasn’t bad.  I always enjoy food with a bit of kick to it.
art city trolley springville utah

Cost:

For my salad, the price was .  One of the cheaper meals I’ve had, but I didn’t order a drink or appetizer either.

Overall Summary/Would I Come Back:

I liked the Art City Trolley, and if I’m around the area, I will come back.  I do wish they had decaf coffee, but I wonder how many people ask for that.

Atmosphere: B
Coffee: —
Food: A
Service: B
Cost: $10-12
Overall: B

Question for you: Have you eaten in an old train or trolley before?

 

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Four State Vacation

It’s taken over a month to finally recap my entire vacation.  I still have a few lingering diner reviews left, but with one phase of life over and the next moving forward, I figured it would be best to wrap finally wrap the trip up.

As I mentioned a month ago, my husband and I had no plans when we went out there.  We booked two plane tickets and a rental car.  We had no hotels booked, no plans of which towns and cities we would see, but figured we would wing it.  We didn’t imagine we would drive to four different states and put over 2600 miles on our car…but we did.

road trip through colorado

So where to begin?

We flew into Denver.

We stayed for a few days in Denver.  We explored the city a bit, and went for a few gorgeous runs.  We also got to see my good friend Kevin and his wife which I haen’t seen in a while.  

While in Denver, we drove up and went hiking at Flagstaff Mountain in Boulder.  We went to a few diners including Sams 3 which was on the Food Network as well as the brand new Snooze Cafe.

Next, we headed out West towards Utah.  My good friend Janae had said there were a fun 5k/13.1 and we thought…why not.  It’s only about 400 miles, right?  Plus, we would see what we would see.

Earlier in the year one of my closest friends, Angela, moved to Colorado (from South Jersey). The route to Utah went right through her town which we had been planning to do anyway.  We stayed the night at Angela and her husband’s house, went for a gorgeous run, and of course at her local diner: The New Castle Diner.

Then we continued towards Utah.  It was a scenic and beautiful drive.  Most of the time we didn’t have cell service which was actually nice.  No internet, blogging, or Facebooking.  Just the road and rocks on either side.

We got into Provo late that night, found a nice hotel near the race.  Since there was a half marathon, packet pickup was the night before at the mall.  We overheard some locals talking about the “lazy people” doing the 5k…YAY for being lazy.

haunted half 5k provo ut me running

The race itself was tough.  NJ is at sea level, Utah is 4000-5000 above (I can’t remember).  There was also a massive hill at the end of the race, and I finished in 19:40 dry heaving the whole way.  You can read more about the Haunted Half 5k here.

haunted half 5k provo ut me running

No, seriously it was painful

Janae, who just had her baby, finished and placed in her age group.  It was great to hang out, and the morning was definitely one of the highlights of the trip.   Another state I’ve raced in, not that I’m even sure how many that is.

After the race in Utah, we drove South.  We stayed the night, woke up the next morning and explored both Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park.

Hiking in Zion National Park

Both were beautiful, and we could have spent days, weeks, and probably months in either.  I hope one day to get back and spend more time and each.  Both have half and full marathons too, which would be fun to run if we trained appropriately (IE: at elevation).  Judging from the 5k, it might be awhile. We went to Meme’s cafe for lunch in Zion, which was an “interesting” experience.

After that, we stayed overnight and headed down to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon.  We were only a few hours away, and I’ve always wanted to see it.  A few hours away is a lot closer than NJ, so we decided to just drive down there.  It was absolutely breathtaking!

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We've always wanted to go to the Grand Canyon…so we did.

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After the Grand Canyon, we progressed east towards Colorado.  We wanted to make a stop at the Four Corners: where Utah, Colorado, Arizona, and New Mexico meet.  It’s a bucket list item, just to say you did.  It wasn’t too crowded when we got there.  You can stand in all Four Corners or lay there…

For the next couple of days, we just enjoyed the drive, view, and hanging out.  We saw a lot of cute towns.  We drove through Uncompahgre National Forest and over a terrifying mountain pass in which it was snowing.  We decided to stop and take a photo at the top.  It was one of the most incredible views of the trip.

Afterwards, we headed to Tim’s relative’s house in Montrose, Colorado.  It was nice to see family, and they took us for a 10+ mile four wheeling expedition up a mountain.  I’ve never been four wheeling before, so it was a brand new but so much fun experience.  The mountain in the background is actually the mountain we drove over and took the photo (above).

After an enjoyable visit in Montrose, we headed back towards Denver.  We stopped in Colorado Springs for a couple of days.  Initially, we wanted to go walk around the Air Force Academy, but there were essential meetings, and we weren’t allowed on.  We should have started our trip that way!  We decided to hike the Seven Bridges Trail (yes, you cross 7 bridges) as well as the Grey Back Peak Trail.

We also stopped (of course) at the King Chef Diner which was featured on the Food Network.  If you’ve never been, you have to go.  It is definitely one of my favorite diners that I’ve been too, including in NJ!   There are two locations but we chose the 13 seat, small purple castle.

They are most known for their Burritos.  Even with running and hiking, I left full.

King Chef Diner Colorado Springs

Finally, we wrapped our way back to Denver, and it was time to go.  At the airport, I ended up getting food poisoning which I’m still dealing with but that is a blog post for another day.

In summary:

12 Days
4 states
Over 100 miles run
Highest elevation 11000
Lowest elevation 3200
Temperatures between 28-80 degrees
And 2600 miles driven (on the dot)

I had one of the best trips of my life, and it was nice to spend time with my husband before he deployed.  One day we want to do something similar again, but going North to Montana and that way.

Questions for you:

Have you ever been on a road trip?

What is your favorite vacation?

Visiting the Grand Canyon

After visiting Utah, my husband and I drove back towards Colorado. One thing we wanted to do was see the Grand Canyon. While it was a little bit out of our way, being so close it was hard to say no.   Where we stayed in Utah, it made the most sense to go to the North Rim.  I’ve always wanted to go the Grand Canyon, I mean who doesn’t?

The first and possibly most crucial stop we made, was when we saw the wild Buffalo.  I have always wanted to see them, and it was cool to see them in person.  No, I had no intentions of getting any closer than that, as who knows with wild creatures.

grand canyon north rim

After driving about 20 miles into the park, we came up to the lodging area and the actual canyon.  We had been warned the lodging was not open but that was fine by us because it was much quieter at the North Rim versus the South.  In fact, there were maybe about 20 people there.

grand canyon north rim

It was honestly breathtaking to just look out and see nothing but the canyon for miles.  It was also terrifying to look down and know you were over a mile high.

grand canyon north rim

The daredevil and clumsy person in me, said that was far enough.

grand canyon north rim

grand canyon north rim

grand canyon north rim

My husband was a little bit more adventurous.

grand canyon north rim

In total, we spent about 2 hours just walking around.  Like with Zion and the Grand Canyon, we wanted to see the Grand Canyon, but we also wanted to do other things too.  It is definitely somewhere we could (and eventually plan too) spend more time at.grand canyon north rim

After the Grand Canyon, we took to the road for the day and drove over to the Four Corners Monument.  It’s where Utah, Colorado, Arizona, and New Mexico all meet.  It’s definitely a bucket list item.

Like many monuments, you stand in line for a chance to take a photo there.  Or look at it, whatever you want to do.  I decided to lay there.  Keep in mind it is a $5 fee that goes towards the Navajo Nation, which isn’t included with Park passes.

Posts from Vacation:
Hiking: 
Hiking Flagstaff Mountain in Boulder
Hiking Zion and Bryce Canyon

Running: 
Haunted Half Marathon 5k (19:40)
Two Weeks of Training: Easy Miles Out West

Diners: 
Sams 3 Diner (Denver)
New Castle Diner (Colorado)
King Chefs Diner (Colorado Springs)

Questions for you:
Have you ever been to the Grand Canyon or Four Corners?
What is your favorite monument you’ve been too?

 

Exploring Bryce Canyon and Zion Park

It’s taken me a little longer to catch up on blog posts about our vacation.  Between assimilating back into real life NJ, being sick, and preparation for the Philadelphia marathon weekend, it’s been busy.

Anyway, one of the best days my husband and I had was at Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park.

We knew we wanted to go to both but timing wise, it wasn’t going to work out to spend a lot of time at both. We decided to drive through Bryce Canyon and look out and then spend a little more time in Zion National Park.   They aren’t too far apart, so you are able to do both.

Personally, we could both spend a lot of time in either.  They are two gorgeous parks!  Hopefully, sometime in the future, we will be able to go back and explore.

Bryce Canyon: 

While visiting Bryce Canyon, we went out to Rainbow point and walked around.  There is a 10-mile hike you can do and look over the Hoodoo Ampethetiar.  If we had more time, we would have done it!

The park itself is easily driveable.  It’s about an 18-mile drive to the tip of Rainbow Point, and there are several spots and opportunities for photos.

Zion National Park:

Like Bryce Canyon, we could spend days in Zion National Park.  Before arriving, we planned to do a longer hike but quickly realized timing would not allow us too.

We still wanted to get back to Colorado and spend a few days there too!  When we arrived at the park, it was crowded and it was hard to even find parking.  By the time we were able to park and get out of the car, it was nearly 1 pm.

We could have begun the hike but it was a lengthy one and I didn’t want to be hiking at dark.  You had to take a bus to a certain location, then start, then take the bus back.  It was just a lot and if you’ve ever seen me hiking hangry…well…my husband would have left me there. Hiking in Zion National Park

So we just decided to explore and climb up to our own rock.  We didn’t have an exact trail or route but it was more fun that way.  We pulled over at a random spot and just hiked.  Even with hundreds of people inside the park, we didn’t run into anyone.

Hiking in Zion National Park

Sitting in a rock seat

Hiking away from everyone was much better for us anyway.  If you ever go to Zion National Park, don’t be afraid to just stop and explore. Hiking in Zion National Park

You don’t need a trail or destination.  And yes, we actually made it up an entire rock.  You can see the main road in the background.

To be honest, both Bryce and Zion were two of my favorite spots.  Eventually, my husband and I plan to go back.  You could spend days, weeks, and even months just exploring.

road trip through colorado

Posts from Vacation:
Hiking: 
Hiking Flagstaff Mountain in Boulder

Running: 
Haunted Half Marathon 5k (19:40)
Two Weeks of Training: Easy Miles Out West

Diners: 
Sams 3 Diner (Denver)
New Castle Diner (Colorado)

Questions for you:

Where is your favorite place to hike?

Have you ever been to Zion or Bryce Canyon? 

 

Back to Reality Thoughts…

This last two weeks have been exhausting to say the least…a lot of people have asked how I’ve adjusted back from a very long “vacation and world revolving around me”.  In the cruise, everything we wanted and needed was taken care of…

oasis of the seas royal carribean

I guess I can’t live on a ship forever…

 

Now we are back to real life and back to the harsh reality that the world does not revolve around me…kidding…

I decided to just compile random thoughts I’ve had lately.  I haven’t had a random post in a long time.

After a month of little to no routine, it’s been hard to readjust to a routine and working.  Not only readjusting but it’s a busy month for us at work.  If I’m slow to get back to you, I promise it’s not you…it’s me…but I’m not breaking up blogging world.  I’m still running, dinering and blogging…but I love my job and my job comes before blogging.  I just have a lot on my plate right now!

I went from 0-40 hours.  Thankfully I remembered what exactly a running shoe is.

This is a running shoe.  Thanks google...you have the answer for everything.

This is a running shoe. Thanks google…you have the answer for everything.

My days off haven’t really been my days off.  There are a lot of items to take care after getting married.  After going to base last week and we realized we needed my new social security card, we wasted most of the day doing that.  So that day off was a doozy.  We finally got everything done though.

I’ve been working on my blog layout and design.  It’s not exactly where I would like it but it’s getting close.  I didn’t care for the previous design…if anyone is interested in helping, I would appreciate that.

Broad Street taught me that I have not run that fast in a while.  I’m so sore and taking time to recover.  My calves are not been this sore in a while (in a good way!)

At least Royal Caribbean taught me to stop and stretch

At least Royal Caribbean taught me to stop and stretch

Speaking of running, on Tuesday I took a nasty fall and got very scraped up.  I thought I had broken my arm (due to the amount of pain), plus I was bleeding badly.   Luckily I believe that it’s just bruised. It’s very unpleasant to the eyes though and I have no less than 8 bandaids on my hands, elbow, shoulder and knee.

My weekend lately has been Wednesday and Thursday and boy do I look forward to that.  By Tuesday I’m so exhausted my exhaustion has exhaustion.

Today is Thursday and after a very busy day yesterday (with no North Jersey success story), I am taking today completely to myself.  It’s going to be glorious.

Questions for you: 

How do you readjust to real life after a vacation? 

Share a fun fact about your week. 

 

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