hiking

Exploring Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park

Exploring Bryce Canyon and Zion National 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.

Both Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park are located in Southwestern Utah. We knew we wanted to go to both Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park 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 in one day.

Personally, we could both spend a lot of time in either.  Both Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park are beautiful. Hopefully, sometime in the future, we will be able to go back and explore.

Bryce Canyon National Park: 

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

Bryce Canyon park itself is easily driveable.  From the entrance of Bryce Canyon, it’s about an 18-mile drive to the tip of Rainbow Point, and there are several spots and opportunities for photos at Bryce Canyon.

Zion National Park:

Like Bryce Canyon, we could spend days in Zion National Park.  Before arriving, we planned to do a longer hike at Zion National Park 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 Zion National Park, it was crowded and it was hard to even find parking.  By the time we were able to park at Zion National Park and get out of the car, it was nearly 1 pm. My recommendation for Zion National Park is getting there early.

We could have begun the hike at Zion National Park 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 t0 the entrance of Zion National Park.  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 Zion National Park 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 at Zion National Park and just hiked.  Even with hundreds of people inside Zion National 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 of Zion National Park in the background.

To be honest, both Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park 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? 

 

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DailyMusings

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. 

 

Food

Vacation Food

Is today already Wednesday?

I have been working all week so I feel like the week is flying by.

Per blog culture I feel like anytime I talk about food it must be on Wednesday…I only participate in WIAW (What I ate Wednesday) once every few months because I almost always forget to take photos of my food on a daily basis.  The food I consume is also extremely boring and not photoworthy 95% of the time.  I’m a terrible cook and if something takes more than 10 minutes to make I don’t want too…

When I went on my honeymoon, everything was cooked and made for me so therefore it is more exciting!  Anyways, one thing we both enjoyed about the honeymoon was all the great food we didn’t have to make!  It was all perfect from the cookie nookie in key west to the several diners and restaurants we went too.  Everything on the cruise was perfect and I have no complaints about that either.

Instead of posting about how good the food was, I’ll just post some photos and caption them.  I think that is how you blog about food…This obviously isn’t everything I ate nor did I focus on taking photos.  These are the most interesting though and the photos I remembered to take!

I really enjoyed the never ending amount of seafood and dessert (as you can see).  I tried a lot of various fish (including dolphin…not the mammal dolphin but fish dolphin).  While out, we really tried to have as much as seafood as we could.  We knew it was fresh and local and there is nothing like fresh seafood!

I also had dessert every single night and have no regrets.

salad
Fish and salad in Key West
Lobster Prime Rib
Prime Rib and Lobster…so this is what the fancy and expensive 60 dollar meal life feels like 😉
Lobster Prime Rib 1
Another visual of the Prime Rib and Lobster…
Seafood Platter
Terrible lighting but clams, bass and scallops all in one
Duck
Duck and “fancy potatoes”..IE french fries
Chocolate Cake
Chocolate almond cake…it tasted a lot like a big piece of fudge but I don’t mind
Carribean Salad
Caribbean Salad
Bread Pudding
The best bread pudding ever
Can't forget the drinks!
Can’t forget the drinks!
Bad Ass Coffee
Not gas station but BadAss Coffee in St. Maartin…have to end LOLZ blog with coffee right?

Questions for you:

What is your favorite seafood?

What is the most expensive meal you have ever eaten?

I think prime rib and lobster might be it for me!

 

 

wedding

Time to Go

This Sunday I’m getting married.

If you have been following along for the last year here are a bunch of my recaps:

Engaged

Wedding Fears: For the LOLZ

Wedding Update 1:

Wedding Update 2

Wedding Dress Shopping

Final Wedding Update: The food is good

I can truly say I have not been as excited for anything more than this.  All of the wedding planning, the stress (LOL) and the driving will be worth it.  (ETA: I haven’t been stressed at all).

But a few people have wanted to know where my blog will go during this time…

It will still be here!  I scheduled a few posts during the time I am gone: diner reviews to catch up on, a couple of posts from friends and even a few product reviews!

I will not be updating my social media regularly during the honeymoon.  I have pretty much written everything that will appear on this blog from now until late April (which I believe is about 5 posts).

I love you blogging friends but I love my (soon to be) husband more.  I have been looking forward to this day and our life together for a very long time.  I am sure I will update sporadically on Instagram and twitter but probably not a lot…I’ve felt disconnected the last month already!

I appreciate everyone’s support and love and I appreciate my friends and family who are able to attend the wedding this weekend.  We look forward to it!

It would be a lie if I didn’t say we didn’t look forward to the honeymoon as well (something I’ve chosen not to share right now on the blog).

Anyways, I just wanted to give you a heads up!  And my social media accounts will probably be primarily focused on my wedding for a while.  

T and I post race.

 

I trust everyone can function without LOLZ blog. 

Personal

Homecation

My visit last week to Virginia was a lot of fun.  I haven’t spent a week in my hometown in a while.  I think the last time I spent an entire week there was when I lived in Virginia for the summer of 2013.  It was nice to relax and see friends.  I also got a lot of very much needed wedding stuff done. With all of things I have gotten done wedding wise, I might get married.

Where to even begin?

I arrived to Virginia late Christmas Eve.  It’s hard to believe that was 2 weeks ago. I drove home from work and then spent Christmas day relaxing and hanging out with my family. It was exactly what I needed.  While I don’t live in Virginia, Virginia is still home.

In the days after Christmas, I did a lot.  Instead of writing too much, ’ll just caption photos.

I was able to hang out with one of my bridesmaids, Theresa. We went to a (new to us) Mexican restaurant Luna Maya.  Their portions were massive and if you visit Norfolk, VA, I would recommend the restaurant.  In fact, I want to visit Virginia again so I can go.

Getting froyo afterwords.  I mean whipped cream with a side of fro yo,
Getting froyo afterwords. I mean whipped cream with a side of fro yo,
At Luna Maya
At Luna Maya

I got to hang out with another Bridesmaid, Anna.  Anna and I have been friends for over 13 years (that is over half our lives!).  It’s crazy to think that.  She is truly one of the best friends I could ask for.  After undergrad, Anna taught in China for two years and recently moved back to the US to work on grad school.  While we don’t live close, it’s a lot closer than halfway around the world.  She has been one of my best friends for 13 years now and it was so lovely to catch up with her.

anna and i

After more relaxing, wedding planning and doing absolutely nothing, I got lunch with Kris L and Kellie.  Most Virginia Beach runners know what powerhouse runners these woman are.  Not only are they both insanely fast, but they are both insanely nice.  We went to a local favorite and (Virginia diner?) Citrus on Christmas Eve.  They are two of my favorite people to talk training, life and whatever else with.

Nonrunning clothes ;)
Nonrunning clothes 😉 Kellie, myself and Kris

The of course, I also did two local road races (I’m sure I’ve spammed my blog enough with them):

12/31 11:15 pm Beat the Ball 5k

Happy New Years!
Happy New Years!

1/1 10 am: Hair of the Dog 5k

This week vacation was exactly what I needed.  It broke up the month the month of December and it made it fly by.  I feel like I was just leaving New Jersey and now I’m back.

While my “homecation” was relaxing, I got a lot of much needed stuff done on my wedding too.  I was starting to feel nervous (due to doing nothing in December) but I got a lot accomplished last week.  It also made the wedding as a whole become more real!  I’ll have a wedding update at some point.  Long story short, I’ve gone to the first vendor of each category…said what I have wanted and they have done a great job.  I have no stress or complaints.

Questions for you:

Do you visit your hometown a lot?

How were your Holidays?