Where has time gone? I can hardly believe that we are headed into fall and the leaves are beginning to change. Even more so, I can hardly believe that I am almost 30, married and two kids that are changing and growing faster than I can keep track of. The older I get the more aware I’ve become of how quickly things change and how precious the relationships with each other, God, and how we treat ourselves are. I’ve been wanting to be present, learn and grow from experiences and especially press pause on life every now and again. Which is why we headed up to Deer Valley Resort in Utah again. You can read about or hands down favorite ski vacation with the best food I’ve ever had in THIS POST, but this last weekend was pretty spectacular in it’s own way. Deer Valley was kind enough to invite us up for an amazing stay and One Republic/Sara Baraeillis outdoor concert, but I was in no way required to write. THis is all me choosing to share something I love and want you all to experience.
So, let’s get the raw stuff out of the way first. Yes, vacationing costs money and Deer Valley is no cheap skate hotel, but it’s a vacation that can cost as much or as little as you want it to and the experience is priceless. Ok, so you have to pay a little more for your condo (I’m just being perfectly real here) but not only is it gorgeous and has gobs of space for your family, but The Lodges where we stayed are seriously like a home away from home. Everything you could possibly need from a fully stocked kitchen, living room with games and space for entertaining to humidifiers and washers and dryers to stay clean and healthy. You guys, just do it. One time or once a year as a tradition. You will never regret doing something amazing with your family.
We started out our stay with a gorgeous hike around Deer Valley. It didn’t cost us a dime. The exercise and fresh mountain air combined with our excited kids who were finding deer tracks, flowers, bugs and gorgeous nature around them were totally worth every step. Plus we were totally unplugged. Yes, we took pictures but we didn’t talk on the phone, text, read emails or even play music. We just let ourselves be. Sweat, the crunch of the ground beneath us, clean air and curiosity of children were all we had, and it was perfection.
By the time the hike was over we were famished. We had worked up a great appetite and the kids were begging for a fun dinner and not just any ol’ restaurant. We all decided on Maxwells. Everything is delicious, there are great choices for kids, and the atmosphere is fun and casual. It was still bright and sunny, but we opted to eat outside as we knew it would cool down soon enough. The pizzas are ginormous and crazy delicious, but the philly cheese steak and Caesar salad are pretty spectacular as well. Y’all, it was wonderful. We sat outside in the sunshine, there were families playing in the big grassy area, some even enjoying their own homemade picnics, friends gathering at the restaurant and laughter everywhere. It was a moment. Nothing else mattered. We had just been on a peaceful hike, our bodies felt stronger and minds more clear, and our bellies full.
The next morning we headed to our favorite spot for breakfast, Deer Valley Grocery Cafe. Sitting outside on a patio with this view is never a bad thing.
While we were waiting for breakfast we took the girls down on the grass to feed the ducks. Why don’t we go do that more often? It was so fun to watch them get all excited about the ducks. In fact, at one point our littlest was so excited that fish had also come to eat that when she was chasing the ducks she started saying, “Here fishy, fishy, fishy!” Clearly she couldn’t even thin straight!
And then breakfast arrived. Forgive the iphone photos, but we were so hungry and exited about all of these delicious dishes that we couldn’t wait to dig in. If you visit The Grocery Cafe (and you should.) make sure you order the french toast for something sweet, and the southwestern wrap for something crazy flavorful. The chorizo and egg stromboli was also amazing. I mean, just look at that flaky crust! Plus, a little fruit on the side is always necessary.
The rest of the day was spent swimming, relaxing, shopping and ended with an amazing concert. If you’re not already following me on instagram make sure you do, like right now. Just search for me under, ohsweetbasil. I’ve got more pictures and a few videos of the awesome concert we attended, Sara Bareilles and One Republic. Ok, first of all, Sara is amazing live. Seriously. And One Republic pretty much blew the roof off. Even our little girls were so excited with every new song, although we did leave a little early because they are kids you know. No 3 and 7 year old needs to be at a concert until midnight, but it was hard to leave.
We especially loved that we got an amazing picnic to eat during the show. And my gosh, I feel like I cannot even call it a picnic. Our picnics certainly never look like this. Good mercy, Filet, smoked salmon, antipasto, crusty bread, tarts, pound cakes etc. And the girls had their own too. The kids’ picnics were packed full of fruit, peanut butter for dipping apples, a huge container of chopped veggies, chicken strips, multi potato (sweet, purple etc) chips, and chocolate chip cookies. Oh, and activity books and crayons in case they got bored, which they didn’t.
It was a magical weekend and much needed alone time for our family. No one but each other to talk to you and nature to enjoy. We loved it. We are already itching to get back.