April 15, 2017

This week in pictures | Arizona in 4 days

things to do in arizona

It all started when I called a family meeting to discuss our road trip to Arizona.  Presley was the only one who took notes.  Since then, he's been promoted from middle child to favorite child.  How cute are his check boxes!!

There was so much to see, so little time.  I was seeking a road trip adventure with uncivilized wake up times where back to back activities left no room for downtime.  I wanted to take the new car off-roading and go hiking through the wilderness along side majestic mountain backdrops.  Arizona was definitely going to be different than our usual beach bumming, resort living vacay.

Prior to our 506 miles destination, we cleaned out the pantry.

snacks for the road trip

Packed up our crap, kids, neck pillows...and headed east!

road trip to arizona

Four hours later.

we made it to arizona

We stopped for burgers in Kingman.

lunch in kingman arizona at ma and pa's hot rod cafe

The Heart of Historic Route 66.

kingman, arizona, the heart of historic route 66

(Fascinating family photo #1)

kingman, arizona, the heart of historic route 66

Kitschy visitor center.

visit the kingman, arizona visitor center off route 66

Second stop on our tour was the quirky town of Seligman.  

visit seligman, arizona off historic route 66

Delgadillo's Snow Cap Drive-In was on the top of my bucket list of things to see/eat/do on I-40/Route 66.

delgadillos snow cap drive-in for burgers, malts, ice cream, shakes in seligman, arizona

We popped in for milk shakes and ice cream.  Truman had a root beer freeze.  I can't say NO on vacation.

delgadillos snow cap drive-in in seligman, arizona

I knew the kids would dig this place and appreciate the towns resemblance to Radiator Springs.

delgadillos snow cap drive-in displays cars from the movie Cars

Bathroom break.

delgadillos snow cap drive-in out house

David checked into work.

delgadillos snow cap drive-in outdoor phone booth

Moving ahead to Historic Williams where the boys experienced a little adventure in the sky at Route 66 Zipline.

route 66 zipline in williams, arizona

It's a little pricey but so worth it to hear David squeal the whole way.

route 66 zipline in williams, arizona along route 66

Here's his close up moment.

route 66 zipline in williams, arizona

Our first dinner in Flagstaff was in downtown at Root Public House.  

root public house in downtown flagstaff, arizona

I think we all agreed it was the best meal we had of the whole trip.

root public house in downtown flagstaff, arizona

The drive down from Flagstaff to Sedona was heavenly and scary at times.

coconino national forest

The Coconino National Forest is abundant!

coconino national forest

A little fresh air never hurt nobody.

(Fascinating family photo #2)

coconino national forest

Bathroom break #59.  David was surprised by how clean it was.

oak creek visitors center in coconino national forest

Arizona law.  Thanks for the reminder.


City line.

sedona city line

Sedona, you had me at red.

sedona sky line

Trek to Devil's Bridge.

devils bridge hike in sedona, arizona

1.5 miles down, 0.8 miles to go.

devils bridge hike in sedona, arizona

Intermission.

devils bridge hike in sedona, arizona

Taking it all in.  He looks so tiny.

devils bridge hike in sedona, arizona

We made it!!

devils bridge hike in sedona, arizona

Living in the moment.

devils bridge hike in sedona, arizona

(Fascinating family photo #3)

devils bridge hike in sedona, arizona

I gave the kids a downtime pass while we drove through Red Rock State Park even though they were begging and pleading to do another hike.

devils bridge hike in sedona, arizona

David's thinking we should leave the kids in the car and make a run for it.  Tempting.  Cathedral Rock sure looks pretty.

cathedral rock in sedona, arizona

Wild, wild, west.

grand canyon railway hotel wild west show

Cowboys.

grand canyon cowboys before we board grand canyon railway train

Boy on the train.

Grand Canyon Railway Train

We took the Railway train to the Grand Canyon!

Grand Canyon Railway Train

It was so fun!!!

Grand Canyon Railway Train

Took me 43 years to get here.

Grand Canyon view is breathtaking

(Fascinating family photo #4)

Grand Canyon view

Trails are narrow and intimidating.

Grand Canyon hike

I played with some filters and liked how blue the sky came out.

(Fascinating family photo #5)

Grand Canyon

You need this after the long haul.

Grand Canyon ice cream

I forgot to mention something funny happened on the way up to the Grand Canyon...

This happened right after a young millennial photographer told David, "Put your elbow up and lean in like you love em."

It was hysterical.  Buying the keepsake magnet was worth remembering how he told David how to pose in the picture.

(Fascinating family photo #6)

grand canyon trailway train

My car has excellent traction control for off-roading.

off-roading to lava river cave through the coconino national forest

Lumbersexual alert.

lava river cave in the coconino national forest

The cure for claustrophobia is down under.

lava river cave

Icicles inside the Lava River Cave!!

icicles inside the lava river cave

It was hard to get a clear picture once we were deep inside.  It's pitch black with only light coming from our flash lights.

lava river cave

One last picture before Presley and I went potty in the forest.

path to the lava river cave

Wisdom for the ride home: Open-mindedness is switching up your side game and giving Onion Rings some love.  Traveling helps keep life in perspective.

sonic wisdom - Open-mindedness is switching up your side game and giving Onion Rings some love.

The next morning I returned to my responsibilities.


The time away does help bring back a fresh mindset to my everyday life.  There's a sense of enthusiasm to my daily upkeep of living that would normally put me in a rut.

I'm reminded to be there and be present.  Notice the magic moments within the mundane moments.

I asked Truman if he'd wish he was back in Arizona or happy to be home.  He said he was happy to be home, to be sleeping in his soft, cozy bed.  I realized I've created a home that my kids always want to come home to.

Now that's the sweetest ending to our vacation any mom could ask for.