For my 30th birthday we decided to ditch the standard celebrations and have our own kind of party and take off for a road trip through Southern Utah. I was beyond thrilled to have a weekend getaway with Todd regardless of what we would be doing. We hopped in the car and started to drive with a tentative plan to head south. To be honest, I was a little restless not knowing where we would end up that night but I was channeling my inner spirit goddess and knew this was going to be a trip I would never forget. We ended up in St George and decided we should take advantage of the National Parks that are just hours away so we hit up Zions and Bryce Canyon for the rest of the weekend.  Utah is one of those states that captivates you with its beauty. In just a few hour’s drive you can be in the snow covered mountains, drive through an uninhabited desert, and end up in the red rock as you near the border.

These two parks are vastly different in climate and scenery, so being able to see both in one weekend was perfect for us. The red cliffs of Zions tower over you and have a way of making you feel small standing at the bottom of the canyon. There are more hikes than we could count and already feel the need to go back to do some we didn’t get to. Then you have the pink Hoodoos of Bryce Canyon that will mesmerize you at first sight as you stare out into the horizon. The stars at night flood the sky and will have you gazing at them into the early hours of the morning because you can’t seem to look away and go to sleep.

Entering these parks in the peak of the summer season proved to be the only downside. The trails were speckled with tourists and gave us the feeling we were visiting an amusement park instead of experiencing nature in its purest form.  There was no room to stop and rest and admire the sights, because you would be trampled by the person coming up behind you. It was almost as if everyone else was too determined to get to the end of the trail that they didn’t have the time to stop and admire their surroundings. I was sad for them and the fact that they were missing the whole point of getting outside and visiting a place like that.

As I sit and reflect on this trip it makes me realize how the pace of the world has changed so much over the years. Everyone always seems to be in such a hurry. Always looking at the next event ahead of them that they miss the beauty of the present. I don’t want to be like that. I want to live each day to its fullest and have a life full of memories with the people I love.  May we all take the time to slow down and live in the moment and enjoy each day for what it is. I have so much that will always stay with me from this trip. From the astounding views that these two parks had to offer, to stopping on a random road to use Todd’s grill because we couldn’t find anywhere we wanted to eat, to endless boxes of Jr Mints to satisfy our sweet tooth as we drove. I appreciate and love it all.