Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Home Away From Home Away From Home

True story: I've been obsessed with Arizona for as long as I can remember. My family and I would visit my mom's family there every year growing up. I always looked forward to those trips - seeing tons of cousins, aunts, and uncles, shopping and eating out all over the valley, visiting the small town my mom grew up in, and attending sweet family reunions in the mountains. Both of my parents and a couple of my grandparents were born in Arizona, so I'm pretty sure it's in my blood. As I've gotten older, I haven't been able to go as much as I used to. So, this last 3 day weekend was basically a dream come true for me because we took a road trip back down to Phoenix

Nate and Claire used to live in Orem (in the apartment we now live in). They would have us over every Sunday for delicious dinners that year we were dating and engaged, and we did a lot of things with them on the weekends, too. After Nate graduated, they moved to Phoenix to work for American Express. A couple of weeks ago, Claire had her second baby! They named him Owen Hugh Allred and he is an absolute doll. As soon as I saw pictures of him I knew we had to drive down there ASAP so I could hold that baby!

Daren and Margo had already driven down the day before, but because of school and such, we couldn't leave until Friday night. Scott drove down from Logan and picked us up so we could start our 11 hour drive to paradise. We stopped to gas up the car about 2 miles from our house, and this is what happened there:

If you look carefully, the car key is in fact broken into 2 different pieces. Great way to start the trip:)

Luckily, we were able to call a locksmith and have him make a new key from these two broken pieces. It only set us back about a 45 minutes or so.

We drove all through the night (okay, I mostly just slept in the back seat) until we got to Phoenix around 6:30 Saturday morning. We went straight to the hotel Daren and Margo were at and took some power naps. When we woke up, we went to Nate and Claire's for a great day!

Clearly there was a lot of excitement going on.

After lunch with all those Allreds, Nate and Claire let Johnny and me borrow their car to go to Mesa. Of course we had to stop by Last Chance on our way down there so we could get some sweet Nordstrom sales. Then we went to my cousin Stacie's house. She was there with her four kids, and her sister Kamala was also there with her little boy. It was way fun to see some cousins. I wanted to stop by and see an aunt in Mesa, but we ran out of time and had to get back to Phoenix for dinner with everyone. We also got to see one of Johnny's old mission companions and his wife in Mesa.

We had a delicious pizza night back in Phoenix, talked a lot with the fam, and then Johnny and I went back to the hotel with his parents for the night. We were pretty tired from our trip for some reason.

On Sunday we went to church with Nate and Claire, then went back to their place for a classic Sunday dinner (just like the good ol' days). After dinner we went on a walk to enjoy the sunshine and beautiful weather!

Johnny and Scotty thought it was the perfect time to get in a nice workout.

Everyone minus the photographer, Daren.

After the walk, we grabbed a few last minute shots.

Seriously could not get enough of baby Owen.


I had to get one with Claire. I love this girl!

Sadly, we left Monday morning. It was such a short trip but so much fun! We caravaned/raced Daren and Margo home (don't laugh at the fact that they beat us). We also took a random detour to see the Hoover Dam. Johnny got some pretty sweet pics.

Our first and only pic together from the whole trip!

It's a long way down.

We had such a great President's Day Weekend! Now we don't have another day off of school for the rest of the semester, so it's time to buckle down. Hopefully we make it to graduation on April 20th!


  1. Sarah! That is such a nice post. We loved having you come down so much!!! Norah's face pretty much says it all.

  2. OK.. YOu didn't tell me you had a blog for crying out loud!!!!! LOVE all these cute pics of you and Johnny. Glad to be able to read a little about your lives. MISS my favorite little cousin in the world. You have always and will always have this special place in my heart!!! This is great, now I will feel reconnected with you!

  3. What a fun and exciting trip!! Oh to have a car...haha Miss you girl!