The week leading up to Labor Day snuck up on me. Traditionally – Zach and I go on a trip for his birthday. But this year we changed it up. Every year the Hendo girls go up to Swiss Days in Midway and spend the week up in Park City. We had a slow relaxing week leading up to it [with the busyness of the last few weeks, it was so nice to be home]. I taught Sloan how to make bread and she thought it was incredible. She was in charge of the mixing and took it very seriously…
She is a girl after my own heart. We both share a love of carbohydrates. I let her pick out a new notebook (she’s on a coloring kick right now) and gave her all the options. Dolphins, unicorns, kittens. She picked the pizza notebook with heart pepperonis.
We enjoyed the bread all week long. It’s never as good as it is right out of the oven, but we weren’t complaining.
Thursday was the first Utah Football game of the season. Sloan and I had to go down to Highland for a design consult and afterwards we spent some time at the outlets at Traverse Mountain. I found the most INCREDIBLE shirt that read “YAY GO SPORTS” but Zach wouldn’t let me wear it to the game. He said it was kind of cynical and I HAD to wear Ute Gear. So that was that – he won.
Also, the Utes won – so all was right in Zach’s world. But mark my words – I will be wearing that shirt in the near future.
Right after the Utah game was over I met up with Gina, Zach’s sister, and we drove up to Park City for our girls weekend. We made a pit stop for some Diet Coke and a shake and some fries from Iceberg, and then made our way up to meet everyone else at the hotel. We got in late, but more than half of our group had already arrived. Rachael and baby Quinn and Lori were already waiting for us. The next morning the four and a half of us girls did our damage at Swiss Days. I’ve never been a big fan of Swiss Days…but then I had a baby. Fur pom pom hats, rompers, and athleisure wear for little ones are too hard to pass up. We shopped from 7:30 until lunch time where we all met at a new place called the Back 40. Quinn and I loved our meal.
Can’t go wrong with a giant mason jar of diet coke and some shrimp tacos!
By lunchtime we had met up with Siri, our sister-in-law, and we all set off for the parade of homes. We hit #13 and #12 first in the Midway area.
Number 13 was my very favorite. The modern farmhouse was an absolute dream.
The Parade of Homes is a tricky one for me. It makes me inspired and depressed at the same time. It also makes me want to spend an obscene amount of money redecorating all of the rooms in my house. BUT Zach and I have decided that we aren’t going to spend any money aesthetically inside our home for a while. At least until we can figure out where we are going to be in the next 5 years or so. So I had to watch from afar and dream of the forever far away future.
Number 12 represented one of my favorites – Jackson and Leroy – but I still liked the design of 13 better. I mean, I’d take either of these homes, don’t get me wrong, but you can be totally picky when you are a guest due to the Parade of Homes!
Afterwards we made our way back to our hotel to change so that we could go to dinner. J&G Grill at the St. Regis never disappoints. I’m a huge fan and probably will be for life. After dinner we went back to our hotel and were pleasantly surprised when one of the hotel lounges had live music – a former contestant on the Voice. He was amazing and even took a few of our requests.
Saturday was my favorite. We slept in and as soon as we were up Gina and I went on a trail run. I almost threw up trying to keep up with her, no joke. But it was so enjoyable and the leaves were changing all around us. I wish I would have brought my phone to take a snap of the colors. After our run I made Gina stop at the hotel bakery for a bran muffin (I am addicted and even once called the hotel to get the recipe – which they do not give out, apparently) and after we went to a pilates class offered at the hotel. It was nice and relaxing. I never take advantage of free fitness classes offered at hotels, but I am going to start from now on! Meanwhile – Siri and Kristi (our newest addition) browsed some more at Swiss Days. Gina and I ate lunch down at the hotel and Rachael and baby Quinn left to go home. We all met up later back in our rooms to get ready to go to the outlets. We did our time at Tangar and then drove to dinner at the Riverhorse on Main Street. Another gem of a restaurant, as always. The red trout is OFF THE HOOK. (See that little joke I made? Fish…hook?)
After dinner we rushed off to catch a movie. The Light Between Oceans – don’t plan on seeing it unless you are ok with full-on ugly crying multiple times. I had to hold in physical sobs at the end so that I wouldn’t disturb all the people around me. Great for a chick flick – but don’t even THINK about bringing your husband. He will die a little inside.
After all eyes were dry we made it back to our hotel. We went through the lounge and happened upon the wedding celebration that was going on. There was a back area (blocked behind curtains) where we got to enjoy the music. Wedding crashers? Only behind curtains, of course.
That’s when Gina had her brilliant idea. And we would later discover that the timing could not have been more perfect. After tasting said bran muffins – she suggested we go down and ask her “friend” for the recipe. Ok, he’s not REALLY her friend, but someone she has worked with a bunch through the hotel reservations. We decided to give it a try. We made our way down to the front desk and asked for her illusive friend. He wasn’t working and wouldn’t be until 2 pm the next day (and we’d already be checked out by then). So I made my plea to the sweet man that was there. He explained that the kitchen was closed and he couldn’t talk to the chef until the morning. Granted, it was REALLY late and he was just manning his post. We kept on prodding him and more people from the hotel staff joined in on all the excitement (mostly noise, from me). Randomly, and sharply dressed man walked over to the front desk. He had a pocket square and Gucci shoes, so I should have known he was the real deal right from the second I could smell his cologne. He waked right over when I was talking about the “top secret recipe” (mind you, I had nicknamed it that ever since the man in the food service department shut me down) so the timing could not have been better. This sweet guy, named Victorio, walked right up to me and said, “nothing we have here is secret, what do you want?” He was the freaking RESORT MANAGER! What are the odds? I told him about the bran muffins and how I longed to know how and what they were made from. He went right in the back and after a few minutes had a print-out of the recipe and a copy for each of us. I was so happy I hugged him. I asked his permission to hug him, obviously, and he let me. And he smelled really good. Like someone who owns Gucci shoes should smell. He made me promise we would use the recipe to “sell or give out” and I PLEDGE to do so forever until my dying days. I’ve already made them – and they are just as dreamy from the comfort of my kitchen island as they are in the hotel. I was so ecstatic that I texted Zach (way later than I should have – but luckily he was watching the BYU game with a friend at our house) and told him all about it. He knew how much I loved those muffins and was enthused for me. Truth be told he was even more enthused when I made them and he got to enjoy them for his breakfasts.
We turned in late, but visions of bran muffin fairies were dancing in my head.
The next morning our whole crew went for a run/hike. We did the same round Gina and I took the previous morning. It was gorgeous weather and even though a few of us got separated, we all made it to the top together.
We rode the chair lift down and got another amazing view of all the leaves starting to change. We had to check out quickly, so we showered and packed up as fast as possible before heading out to lunch. Sammy’s Bistro – get the mahi mango salad – was wonderful. Lori and Kristi had to head back home so Gina, Siri, and I set off to take a tour of a few more homes in Park City. We hit three more, all beautiful, before heading back home.
It was such a wonderful weekend – Swiss Days is definitely not my thing, but how can you complain with good company, amazing food, and some hilarious memories? It couldn’t have been more fun.
I missed Zach and Sloan, though, and couldn’t wait to get back to them. I spent Sunday night reading books on repeat to Sloan before she had to go to bed.
Monday was the holiday, so we spent it lounging around the house. I let Zach sleep in (much deserved after watching Sloan by himself for three straight days) while Sloan and I crushed our to-do list. I made tin foil dinners for that evening along with the secret bran muffins.
Sloan had a great nap and afterwards we all met my parents up Millcreek Canyon for dinner and s’mores. Sloan didn’t care for her tinfoil dinner, but she was all about the mallows!
It was a great weekend. I’ve been waiting for September to roll round for months, and it’s finally here! We’re going to take full advantage of the cooler temps and enjoy Utah and all of it’s fall scenery. Thank you Hendo girls [missing Jeanene and Katie] for a great time!