Arizona Trip – Chapter 2

After the fun lunch in Flagstaff, we headed back to Sedona for our scheduled Pink Jeep tour. When I mentioned to a few people at my meeting in Phoenix that I was heading to Sedona, they all said we had to take a Pink Jeep tour. It sounded a little kitschy, but Brian said it was his favorite thing we did all weekend. Mine too, in a tie for the Grand Canyon. It was SO fun, and it allowed us to see Sedona in a different way. Our tour guide, Paul, told us a lot about the vegetation in the area, the history of the red rocks and about what paleontologists and archaeologists have found in the area. Amazing to know that dinosaurs roamed the area! The Jeep took us down the Broken Arrow trail, one of the most popular in Sedona, and at some points, our Jeep was sideways! I read online that kids can take it too, and I thought about how much P would LOVE it one day.

On the tour, it started to sprinkle a little. It never rains out there, so at first we got a bit worried, but then the sprinkles stopped and a beautiful rainbow appeared! We could not believe how beautiful it was! This trip just kept getting better and better.

IMG_6626

IMG_6631

IMG_6633

IMG_6645

I became pretty captivated by the varieties of cactus on this trip!

IMG_6638

IMG_6647

Our guide Paul pointing out the rock formations. He knew all kinds of interesting facts about them, and even told us about YouTube videos of cyclists riding on them. We looked them up and he was right!

IMG_6650

There were white spots in the limestone like this, and Paul explained it is where something died and the iron impacted the color. Then, due to seismic activity at some point in time, the rocks shifted, causing the spot to separate and a crystalized line to form.

IMG_6651

IMG_6659

If you are ever lost in the desert, eat the red blooms of the cactus – otherwise known as “prickly pear”. The juice from these prickly pears were used in ice creams and margaritas all around Sedona.

IMG_6670

We love Sedona!

IMG_6675

A large agave plant

IMG_6677

IMG_6682

The Jeep drive was crazy! At some points, I couldn’t even see where we were going with all the twists and turns!

IMG_6683

We got a little behind schedule and watched the Jeep behind us follow the same path as us.

IMG_6691

IMG_6692

Beautiful sunset at the end of the Jeep drive

After the Jeep drive, we were ready for some margaritas! We headed to a Sedona favorite that just happened to be next door to our hotel called Elote. It was one of the best Mexican meals of my life. The margaritas were delicious and every dish was divine – especially the appetizer the restaurant is named for, Elote. It was kind of like a corn dip, but man was it delicious! So fresh! We sat at the bar and thankfully didn’t have to wait too long. The restaurant is notorious for hour long waits any night you go, but we must have gotten lucky. We even got to meet the chef. It was a great dinner. We ordered chocolate cake to take back to our room, but ended up passing out (too much food and margaritas!) and had the chocolate cake for breakfast the next morning! So fun!

IMG_6614

View from our hotel room of the red rocks

We wanted to try to watch the Georgia / Tennessee football game somewhere. It started at 9 a.m. Sedona time, so not too many options for bars. We headed back to L’auberge, knowing they would have Bloody Mary’s and the TV on. We watched the first half of the game, and by that time, more places were started to open, so we moved locales. We went to Canyon Cantina, which is more of a bar atmosphere and watched the rest of the game. It was a close one! I hated to see UT lose, but Brian was of course happy!

photo 4-3

Watching the game with a view!

After the game ended, we headed over to Tlaquepaque, an old artists colony. There were lots of shops and little restaurants. It was very picturesque. After we walked around a little while, we decided it was time to say goodbye to Sedona.

IMG_6693

We made our way to the Phoenix/Scottsdale/Tempe area for our last night there. We waited until the last minute to book our hotel (the day of!) and we ended up finding a little gem of a hotel in Scottsdale called 3 Palms. It was $60/night! Sometimes if you wait until the morning of, hotels will give a DEEP discount so we took a chance and it worked. Once we got into Scottsdale, it started to really rain hard! We decided to hop in Fashion Square Mall, the biggest mall I have ever been in, to wait out the rain. We had plans to explore the Mission and old town Scottsdale. Once the rain finally stopped, we went outside and saw debris and flooding everywhere! It turns out that Phoenix had record breaking rain that day – of course, the day we visit. We thought we would go ahead and check in at the hotel. When we got there, the hotel didn’t have power! We were a little worried, but thankfully, the power was up and running again when we got back later that night.

We drove around Scottsdale and saw their cute downtown area. We decided to head over to Tempe for the night. Brian was wanting to check out ASU, and I am so glad we did! We ate at a cool little place called La Bocca on Mill Ave, the college strip. We walked around checking out the scene and remembering our college days! It was a nice, relaxing night with no plans and nowhere to be. It ended up being a perfect way to spend our last night.

We flew Frontier home the next day, our first time flying them since they have moved into Memphis, and that went fine (other than an hour and half delay). We just missed getting to kiss the kids goodnight, but they were so happy to see us the next morning when they woke up. We missed them, but weekends like this are so important to us! It helps us reconnect and remember that we still really enjoy spending every minute together and exploring stuff together. We are so thankful that Brian’s family stepped in to help with the kids while we were gone.

It will probably be a while before we do another trip, but we are still dreaming of Sedona and hoping to go back one day!

photo 1-2

Goodbye Sedona!

photo 3-2

Goodbye Grand Canyon!

photo 2-2

Goodbye Amazing Food! (this is our meal at L’auberge). Brian’s glass of wine was incredible. We Googled it, and it turns out that a bottle is $180. Yikes! Well, at least we enjoyed the few sips we got! Worth it for a night we’ll always remember.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s