How to Recap our Incredible Family Vacation

Yesterday we flew home from, quite possibly, my second best vacation ever (Italy was the best). Having our adult children with us to explore the desert southwest made one our favorite places all the more meaningful.

I’ve decided the best way to recap this incredible family vacation is to break it down by National Parks/State Parks and to keep it long on pictures and short on words. If I keep my recaps short and sweet, I should be able to get them posted much sooner. Of course, tomorrow I head back to work, so there’s that… 😉


No Time for Cocktails by the Pool

We rented a really nice southwest style four-bedroom Airbnb with a pool in St. George, Utah. We had a tough time picking a central location and settled on St. George, choosing not to pack up and move several times. In hindsight, staying in Kanab for a few of our nights and then moving on to St. George might have been a better idea.


With days filled with driving to various state and national parks, hiking, and then grabbing dinner on our way home, we were often gone from before 8 AM to 8 or 9 PM. Exhausted, we’d shower and hit the bed to rest for the following day. It wasn’t until our last night that we returned to the house by 6 PM and had some time to enjoy the pool.


Coming Full Circle with Vacationing Style

Way back in our early years of marriage, Bill and I drove cross-country several times, exploring our vast country along the way. It was at that time that we fell in love with our National Parks, especially those in the Rocky Mountains and the desert southwest.

When our sons were little, we took week-long winter ski vacations in New England and summer vacations at Bill’s parents’ beach house. It was rare that our vacations include sitting by a pool reading and sipping cocktails.

In recent years, Bill and I have returned to our cross-country explorations, often retracing our earlier adventures. This year, we brought our children with us, sharing with them a part of the country so different from the east coast.


Instagram Highlighted the Week

I posted a highlight of each day to Instagram throughout the week. Check it out for a quick reference to the spots we visited.


And Now on to a RunDown of this Past Week’s Workouts…



I’ve always said that the best way to explore a new city or town is by taking an early morning run. The same can be said for hiking. Driving through a park can be breathtaking, but you’ll often miss hidden wonders when not traveling by foot. Here’s a list of our daily hikes

  • Sunday – 4 trails in Zion National Park
  • Monday – 3 trails along the North Rim of the Grand Canyon
  • Tuesday – 4 trails in Kanab / Grand Staircase Escalante
  • Wednesday – 4 trails in Bryce Canyon National Park
  • Thursday – short hike to Horseshoe Bend and Lower Antelope Canyon in Navajo Nation, both near Page, Arizona



Even if I’d wanted to run this past week, it would have been hard to find the time.



On Friday, we rented mountain bikes from Red Coyote Cyclery in Virgin, Utah. Last year in Moab, I discovered I’m not particularly good at biking across rocks and down steep twisty trails with sudden drop-offs and wanted to stay on an easy gently winding trail. What’s easy to one rider might be difficult to another and I learned that an easy mountain biking trail can be a little scary. More on that in my recap later in the week…

Red Coyote Cyclery


Strength Training

On the days I normally lift, I made sure to fit in push-ups and lunges along with my daily planks. Other than that, I didn’t really have time to worry about strength training. Besides, climbing across boulders and pulling myself up small rock ledges gave me plenty of opportunity to flex my muscles.



In all honesty, I didn’t even think about doing any yoga other than my cobra poses which I’ve added as part of my morning planking routine. I’d planned to strike a few poses for pictures out in the desert, but even that eluded me.


It’s on the Blog

In case you skipped checking in on my blog this past week, here’s what you missed…

In addition to the workouts I mentioned above, here’s a complete rundown of my workouts from this past week (completed mostly in our home gym)…


  • Questions:
  • What’s your favorite National Park? ~ It’s hard to pick, isn’t it?
  • Do you hit the gym while on vacation? 
  • Did you race this weekend?


And that’s my rundown… Have a great week!


Disclaimer:  This post may contain affiliate links which means if you click on the blue product link and then make a purchase, I will receive a small commission for referring you. You will pay no more or less for the product; however, Amazon will show their gratitude for my referral by paying me.




I’m linking up with Deborah at Confessions of a Mother Runner and Kim from Running on the Fly for their Weekly Run Down. Be sure to check out not only the hosts’ posts, but the other great bloggers joining in on the fun!