How I Fly For Cheap (And You Can Too!)

FullSizeRender (1)

I love flying. Seriously, being on a plane is so cool and airports make me feel glamorous. I’m not even kidding! I love flying! But, as you may know, (if you have ever even glanced at flight price before) flying can be expensive! In my years of flying, I have found a couple tricks to help get the best deal you can. These tips are so easy; anyone can do them! So sit back, relax, and read these tips before you start planning your next trip!

1.) flights.google.com

It is exactly what it sounds like- Google for airlines. Type in your destination and dates of travel, and tons of options will come up from many different airlines. If your dates are flexible, you can click in to the calendar on the search engine and it will show you the pricing for days around your schedule. Prices can even be cheaper depending on the airport you fly out of/in to. If you live near a couple different airports, try checking the pricing for both! Something to keep in mind- flight prices change all the time. You could use flights.google.com today and look again tomorrow and prices could be cheaper. But if you are open to different airlines and love a good deal, this is the tool for you!

IMG_4001

2.) sign up for email alerts

Have a particular airline that you are obsessed with and you do not want to fly with anyone else? Sign up for the email alerts for the airline you love! They will be the first to notify you of any travel deals coming up. This is a convenient option so you do not need to check an airline website everyday to see if anything has changed.

3.) call the airline

This probably doesn’t seem like a valid way to get a cheaper flight. But, you never know what just calling a company can do. A few years ago, I was flying with a particular airline and needed to change my flight. I emailed them and when they responded they told me it would be over $200 to change my flight. I was bummed and thought well, I might as well call them. When I called, I just re-explained my situation and the employee changed my flight for me for free! Point of the story- something magical happens when people hear your voice. So, if all else fails, try calling to see if you can work something out!

IMG_4003

That’s it! I’m sure there are lots of other clever ways people fly cheap- if you have one, let me know! These are just a couple ways that have worked for me so I’m glad to share them with you!

Memorial Day

We live in an amazing country. Sure, there are protests happening constantly and nothing is perfect. But, I think people forget that we have the freedom to protest. That we can do whatever we want and be whoever we want to be. For me, I can legally go outside in whatever clothes I want and spend the day doing some amazing hiking and rock climbing. I am forever grateful to those men and women who gave everything so I could have the freedom to do anything.

Happy Memorial Day

IMG_3927IMG_3992IMG_3971IMG_3937FullSizeRender (1)

 This beautiful piece of Earth is called Red Ledges. You can access it by taking Diamond Fork Canyon from Spanish Fork Canyon. There is so much hiking and rock climbing; they even have picnic benches so you can have a little lunch after you hike! I love Utah!

San Francisco : Your Day Guide

image

I love San Francisco- easily one of my favorite cities to see. Sure, the traffic is always crazy, but the list of things to do is endless. Everything I go, there are some things I have to do and then I love finding new places to adventure as well.

The first thing I always have to do is get a sourdough bread bowl filled with delicious clam chowder. Most people go to Boudin to eat this meal which means it is always crowded. If you walked down the block a little bit more, you will come to a place called Tarantino’s that over looks the wharf. They have such good food and and big windows with beautiful views.

After that, I love walking over to Ghirardelli Square. The walk from the wharf to the square goes along the water and then up through one of the city’s many parks. Since it is all on a hill, you get a lovely view of the water. There is usually a line at the Ghirardelli shop so make sure you are prepared to wait a little bit; it usually does go by pretty quickly. The shop has many different sundaes to choose from. I recommend the warm brownie sundae- vanilla ice cream, hot fudge, a fresh brownie, topped with whipped cream and a cherry… Yeah. It is one of the most amazing things you will ever taste.

image

Of course, as a tourist in San Francisco, you probably want a cool picture of the Golden Gate Bridge. There are a lot of cool places you can go. One of my favorites is by a historical Site called Fort Point. When you get on the road to the old fort, there are several places you can stop to get a good view (and picture) of the world-famous bridge. After you get your picture, you can continue on to Fort Point. If you are a history buff, you will love walking around and learning all about this cool building under the Golden Gate Bridge.

If you have time, some other cool places to check out are the Sutro baths and Muir Woods. San Francisco is an amazing city and whether you are there for 1 day or 1 month, you will not run out of things to interest you. If you have ever been to San Fran, I would love to hear about your favorite things to do!

The Homestead Crater : What To Expect

We finally went to The Homestead Crater!

This is something I have wanted to do since I moved to Utah a few years ago and I am so glad we finally got to go. The Homestead Crater is located at The Homestead Resort in Midway Utah- a cute little community nestled in the mountains. From the outside, the crater looks like a hill or a small volcano. A small tunnel takes you to the center where you can swim in some amazing hot springs.

img_0397

Since I had never been before, I did not know what to expect and was shocked by some of the different things at the resort and the crater. Here are some things to keep in mind before you go!

– You must make reservations ahead of time. The hot springs are a popular place and reservations are required in advance to check them out. These reservations are at a specific time so make sure you get to the resort at your scheduled reservation time

–  Since you have a specific time to be there, you only have a certain amount of time to enjoy the hot springs. Your reservation is for about an hour including changing time. This means they allow about 40 minutes for actually being in the hot springs.

– You must wear a life vest. Unless you are going there to scuba dive (yeah- you can go scuba diving if you are certified or taking the certification lessons there), you have to wear a life vest the entire time you are in the hot springs. You can rent snorkeling equipment for an additional cost which is cool. However, don’t think you can go swimming around under water while you’re here.

– You will not be the only ones there. Unless you bring a large enough group to block out the entire hour or you go during a time that is not busy at all- there will be other people there. AND there is not an age limit for the crater so there may be lots of little kids there with you. If you are looking for some alone time or quiet time, this may not be the place for you.

I thought going to the crater was a cool experience and I am glad we got to do it. However, I am not sure if it is something I would do again any time soon. There were a few too many rules to fully enjoy the hot springs in the Crater. I can’t wait to go to more hot springs here in Utah!

fullsizerender-20

Top 5: Utah County

img_2911

If you have come to visit me and Wesley while we have lived in Utah, chances are we took you to at least 1 of these places. This list is definitely not all there is to do in Utah County (that would require writing an entire book) but this is a small list of places we love taking our family and friends when they come to visit; we got hiking trails, driving trails, food places, etc… So, here is where Wesley and I will probably take you when you come to visit.

Sundance Resort

This is a beautiful mountain escape located up Provo Canyon. Robert Redford bought the land in the 1960’s and wanted to preserve the beauty of this new property. He envisioned “the balance of art, nature and community”. That’s what Sundance is and you don’t even have to book a room at the resort to experience this. Not only are there delicious dining options and an incredible spa, there’s a ski lift that is open all year round- for skiing in the Winter and beautiful views in the Summer. There are also numerous trails to walk around the resort and the surrounding forest.

When we bring people up here, we usually like to walk through the General Store, located right by a ski lift. We then like to get hot chocolate from next door and then walk around the grounds, taking lots of pictures!

 Bridal Veil Falls

This picturesque waterfall is in Provo Canyon; in fact, you drive right by it on your way to Sundance Resort. When you get to the falls, you can either drive up a ways and park right in front of the falls to enjoy the view. Or, you can park at Nunn’s Park and walk along a nice trail to the waterfall. Either way, you will get a beautiful view of Bridal Veil. If you want a little more adventure, you can actually follow a steeper, switch back trail to go up the waterfall! It does give some amazing views of the canyon.

Thanksgiving Point

The best part about Thanksgiving Point is you have so many options of fun things to do! You can just spend an afternoon at the gardens, or you can spend a day or two experiencing everything you can!

You have your choice of 2 museums: The Museum of Natural Curiosity and the Museum of Ancient Life. There are also beautiful gardens that expand for 55 acres! You can even go to Farm Country and check out all the different animals. With an amazing local movie theatre and lots of places to eat, this is a place you can check out over and over again.

Alpine Loop

This is one of my most favorite places in the world. Alpine Loop is a scenic byway that cuts from American Fork Canyon to Provo Canyon and actually goes right by Sundance Resort! The road cuts alongside mountain edges, follows rivers, and takes you through magical Aspen Groves. Wesley loves this because it’s a fun drive with his Subaru. I love it because I see something new and different about the scenery every time we go. We both love it because we can either drive straight through, or stop and have ourselves a little adventure on one of the various trails.

We love bringing people on this drive and walking around to take pictures. It really gives our friends and family a nice chance to see the beauty of Utah- away from the noise of the city.

img_0677

Station 22

By the time we are done taking our friends on one of these adventures, we are ready to eat! We have soooo many favorite restaurants in Utah (hmm… that’s a good blog post idea…) but we decided to pick one that was different from other places we had been and not something you can really find anywhere else.

Station 22 is the perfect place for delicious comfort food. Not only do you have your choice of burgers and salads- the menu also includes chicken and waffles, mac & cheese, fish and chips, and delicious appetizers. They even have huge wall of craft sodas- colas, creams sodas, root beers, birch beers, sarsaparillas- and much, much more! You get to eat all this food and drink your yummy soda and the cutest, eclectic cafe. I’m getting hungry just writing this!

There you go! Those are some of mine and Wesley’s favorite places to take our friend and family! I hope you got some fun ideas for your next adventure!

*The picture of Thanksgiving Point is not my picture*

Winter Wonderland

I am definitely a summer girl.

I love green trees, lakes, waterfalls, barbecue, clear nights, the sun… I just can’t lie. I have a favorite season. And it’s Summer. It’s a good thing the seasons are not my children- that might be problematic.

Anyway! So, Summer is great, Spring is beautiful, and I definitely do not mind Autumn. But, Winter and I have not had the greatest relationship. When I lived in Southern California, I never really noticed it because my Winter in Huntington Beach consisted of 75 degree weather and beach days. No, it wasn’t until I moved to Utah that I found out me and Winter don’t really get along.

It’s cold. It’s dark. My heating bill goes up. I slip on ice all the time. Driving is a hazard. The list can go on and on. So, every once in awhile I just need that little reminder that Winter is beautiful in it’s own way.

Today I got that little reminder.

imageimageimage

I mean- yes, it is still dark and cold. But it is oh so magical.

Memories From 2016

What an amazing year 2016 was!

image

As I look back on this year, I am filled with so much gratitude and happiness. Wesley and I were able to explore so much of our beautiful state of Utah- from waterfalls and lakes to forests and views. We love this amazing place we live in; We were even able to buy our first home together here!

I graduated as a Master Esthetician from the Aveda Institute in Provo. It was an amazing education and I love having a career where I am continuously learning. I feel so blessed to work in a field where I feel I can help people.

Wesley and I are so excited for the adventures to come in 2017!

The Worst advice people gave me about Europe

A couple weeks ago marked 1 year since I went to Europe for the first time! I love traveling and adventures and experiencing cultures so I, of course, loved every single second. Before I went- people loved giving me “helpful” advice about what to expect in Europe. After I came back, I decided to do a blog post about the advice people had been giving to me and I thought I would re-share that for my 1 Year Europe anniversary!

*This post originally appeared on an old blog I used to have before I switched to this one!*

People give you advice all the time- whether you want it or not. They just think that sharing their little words of wisdom will help you with whatever it is you are doing. When I told people I was going to Europe, they were not shy about telling me their thoughts and experiences. I listened to a lot of what they said. But, now that I have gone, I thought I would share some of the worst things people told me about traveling to London and Paris…
“Don’t stay in hostels. They are so sketchy. Splurge on a nice hotel.”
My questions to this are ‘have you ever been in a hostel?’ and ‘when was the last time you stayed in a hostel.’ Hostels are not what they use to be. Cities all over Europe have hostels and “budget hotels”. Every hostel I stayed in had wifi, a private en suite, and they range from 2-6 beds (because I went with a group, I knew everyone in the room with me). Hostels are normally in a central location so they are close to public transportation, good food, and local hang outs.
My advice- check out the websites and reviews for hostels, do your research, and don’t freak out about them.
“Don’t sleep on the plane. You have to get use to the time difference and if you sleep on the plane, you won’t be able to fall asleep at night. “
When someone told me this I thought okay yeah that makes sense. Then, you realize you are pretty much tired all the time AND chances are you are walking around all day. So, no matter how much you sleep- you are going to be tired.
My advice- Sleep as much as you can. You are in an amazing place and you are going to be so busy all day that you need all the sleep you can get. SLEEP.
“Don’t carry cash on you. You should always use your card because you can cancel it if it gets stolen. “
It is a good idea to carry your debit/credit card with you. If you do- make sure you call your card company ahead of time and tell them you where you will be traveling so your card isn’t declined when you are trying to make a purchase. However, you should definitely bring cash with you. Some places only take cash and your bank will more than likely charge you money to make withdrawals from foreign ATM’s.
My advice- bring cash and keep it in your front pocket or in a crossbody bag so your money is safe from pickpockets.
“Don’t get your hopes up. The Paris Syndrome is totally real.”
For those of you who don’t know- The Paris Syndrome is when you build up a european city in you head and think it is going to be so amazing and then when you get there you become disappointed because it’s just a ‘normal city’. When people told me this, it actually scared me. I have been dreaming of going to Paris my entire life and I couldn’t imagine being sad while being in this city I have always wanted to see. It’s true, it is a city- people live there and work there like anywhere else. But when I got there, I realized nothing anyone said could make me be disappointed in Europe. The history, the food, the culture, the art, the people- you just cant be bummed out when you’re there. It really is incredible, don’t worry.
My advice- get your hopes up. Be excited. You’re seeing new places! You’re going on adventures! It’s going to be an amazing experience! You are going to have so much fun and do not let other people and what they say bring you down!

Sunday Adventure #3

Link to Sunday Adventures #3 here —> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QH9UdfAOvWI

For our latest Sunday Adventure, Wesley and I drove the Alpine Loop Scenic Byway. It is my favorite drive and definitely my happy place. IMG_0831

Alpine Loop connects American Fork Canyon and Provo Canyon. It goes by Sundance Resort, past beautiful rivers and aspen groves, and has amazing campgrounds. You can go hiking, mountain biking, and spend an amazing time with your friends, family, and pets!

Alpine Loop is beautiful and I definitely recommend it to everyone!

IMG_0833IMG_0836IMG_0834

Sunday Adventures #2

Link to Youtube video here! —> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dOl6XzZYrAU

This week, we went to Nebo Loop for our Sunday Adventure. Nebo Loop is a scenic byway that you can access from Payson, Utah or Nephi, Utah.

IMG_0736

Right now, It is closed a little bit in from Payson because of severe road damage. So, we did not get to drive too far in.

However, you can still hike around and it is simply beautiful right now! Where the road is closed is a lovely area where you can park and and have a picnic.

IMG_0753IMG_0751IMG_0741

This drive is so fun and there is so much to do with the trails and camping areas.

***TIPS***

1.) Bring a sweater or light jacket. A combination of the time of year and the environment of these mountains mean the weather can go from sunny to rainy in a couple minutes (see the video we posted for an example). It is best to be prepared with some warm clothing just in case!

2.) Wear the right shoes. Because the drive is closed, there is a lot of opportunity for walking around and hiking. Bring some hiking shoes because you will definitely want to stop along the way and take in the beautiful scenery!