Monday, June 27, 2011

Jill's guide to Provo

We go to Utah once a year. And I LOVE IT. We stay in Provo. Each time we go we do something new that we add to our list of "musts" for our visit. I think as an outsider--we probably hit things that are just old news--been there/done that sort of places for the locals. But we tingle with excitement over the fun things we have on our list. The kids name them off on our trip just to make the time go by a little faster.

So what do WE do while in Provo? .. .so glad you asked.

#1 We hit burger joints. The one thing that Provo has--that I don't think Provoians(?) know is that they are a mecca of mom and pop hamburger joints. We are stuck with chains--booo! And the best thing is that some are combined with greek food. A gyro at a burger joint--whah??? Heck yes! My husband's favorite is Burger Supreme (1796 North University Parkway) I always get a gyro there. Another place we've hit and loved--and also I believe is a local favorite is Stans (525 North 900 East). My sister in law says their pie shakes are unreal. I just remember that their burger was good.

#2 BYU Bookstore. I don't know why we find this fun--but we do. We have to go there--you can't NOT go there. We usually let the kids get a book--and then something from the candy counter. I always get the chocolate covered cinnamon bears (yum).

#3 Monte L. Bean Museum. Short funny story--my brother in law told us to go here a few years ago. My kids were 7, 5, 3. He said, "It's a museum full of stuffed animals--your girls will love it". So I was thinking--that's crazy! My kids LOVE stuffed animals. So I was a tad disappointed when we showed up and it was taxidermied (is that a word?) animals. But he was right--they did love it. And it's free. I love that FREE.

#4 BYU's Museum of Art. We love this too. FREE again. Here is a pick from our most recent trip:

those are books. Cool right? And what is also awesome is that they had an exhibit about war posters/media. They had some cartoons playing and the kids sat down to watch, so Hyrum and I took the opportunity and wandered around a bit. Maybe--2 minutes. And we realized that our 2 year old was missing. But it's UTAH--and on BYU campus--and no one was there. So although I tend to have high anxiety--I wasn't worried. Turns out he climbed some blocked off stairs and was just chillin with the security guard at the top. I LOVE PROVO!!!

#5 Paleontology Museum. FREE--I mean all of the museums would love a donation, but you don't have to . FREE. We just hit this one this year. It's not fun with a 2 year old boy who likes to touch things, but the other kids did well. And there is a window into their work room. We got to see a student working on a fossil. I thought that was cool.

#6 Hike. It's summer and you can go outside (we can't do that here unless we are in a pool). We went to Rock Canyon. It's just past the Provo Temple. Super easy to find. Parking is right there. We actually didn't hike up the canyon. We started walking toward the mountain from the parking lot, and took the trail off to the left that goes over the bridge. It was gorgeous--and so easy for the kids. Provo is gorgeous. Ridiculous gorgeous.

#7 Bowling at BYU. It's on the bottom floor of the Wilkinson Center. My kids loved this. It was cheaper than normal bowling--so that made me happy. And again--it's Provo/BYU Campus so you didn't have the somewhat questionable people that can be found at dirty bowling alleys. Go. do. It's fun. See:

#8 Ice cream. You have so many options here. Hit any of the burger joints and order a shake. For some reason Provo thinks that shakes are just slightly soft ice cream that overflows over the top of your cup. Not strawable. But delicious. So that's one. Then there's the BYU creamery. You can also get burgers there. Or Sub-zero(1774 N University Pkwy). We actually have one in AZ, but we originally found it in Utah. They use cryogenics to freeze your ice cream in front of you. Kids dig it. I dig it.

#9 Donuts. Provo Bakery (190 East 100 North Street). Melt in your mouth donut holes. HOme made crumb donuts. And lots of other options in including a GIANT donut. Closed on Mondays--how do we know? It was Kizzy's birthday and we wanted our traditional donut cake. But it was a no go. We got these on Tuesday. Holy snap. De-lish. It's hard to notice because it's not a bakery looking sort of building. Look for this:

#10 CHUCK-O-RAMA.(1081 South University Avenue) My husband had stories of his Grandma taking everyone there because she lOVED it. Being that my husband is a foodie he never wanted us to go. But our friends suggested it as a good option for kids because of the choices. And they were right. My 9 year old can't stop talking about it and wishing we had one. What is it? A buffet. A delicious home cookin' sort of buffet. With slushies and a dessert bar (which is what won over the kids). They have big puffy yummy rolls, and good mashed potatoes, and crispy fried chicken. And they had all of the premade salads I love that I only usually get a babyshowers--you know, the brocolli one with craisins and sunflower seeds and the the one with cabbage/chicken/ramen noodles. Yep. It was good. And legendary to all of the kids. L.E.G.E.N.D.A.R.Y. (my kids are fairly deprived kids)

#11 Startup Candy Co.(534 South 100 West) This is the place that makes those big yummy suckers that sell at the one scrapbook store in Mesa. They just have this tiny little room with suckers, and it's only open from I think noon-2, Mon-Thurs. But my kids love picking out their suckers. And I buy the Loll-FLOPS--that is just their messed up lollies. It's fun. And something random to do in the middle of the day.

#12 South Fork Park. I don't know the official name, but that might be it. Just drive up Provo Canyon until you see the South Fork turn off. Turn right. There is a park right there as you turn off. That's not the one I'm talking about. Continue up the little canyon road for a few minutes and you'll see it off to the side. Take a picnic. It has a little creek that runs through it that is super cold, but not deep nor fast--so it's great when you have little kids--it's no worry. It's gorgeous. It's a must for every visit. Provo Canyon is the canyon that is just north of provo--it is where you end up if you just take University North and stay on it. It's the 189.

#13 Sundance. Sundance is fun to visit because you can eat there, and their ski lifts run during the summer so it's kind of fun to take them up and the walk around on the mountain for a bit. It's gorgeous there too of course.

#14 Drive up provo Canyon. Provo CAnyon is gorgeous. Just keep driving until you get up to the top by the resevoir. You'll pass Bridal Veil Falls (I haven't taken my kids there yet) and just see some pretty scenery. You could always keep going to Park City if you want something else to do and you have time.

So that is what i have, or at least what i can think of. Oh--if you are there on Saturdays--definitely hit their farmers market--it's the best Farmers Market anywhere. Tons of food booths, and crafty things, and it's in a gorgeous park. OH and there's Thanksgiving Point--we haven't been there in a while. So much to do, so little time.

OH and for your trip back to AZ--take the I-15 to Cedar City then cross over toward Kanab on the 14. It's the most gorgeous little drive. It was super fun this year because there was still snow. In JUNE! My kids thought it was the coolest thing. So we stopped for pics in our AZ-bound outfits:

Oh and a little lingo tip for out of towners--if someone gives you directions and says 3rd South they mean 300 south. Or 9th East, that means 900 East. I love the way Provo is set up--everything is so easy to find. Go Provo!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Marriage Ref is Back!

A TV show where couples send in their problems and comedians/celebrities discuss/be hilarious about the whole thing. Then the super funny host decides who wins the fight.

It's laugh out loud funny.

Season Premiere Sunday night. I'll be watching fo sho.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Something borrowed

Does anyone have the Living Scriptures audio c.d.'s?

It's dramatized scripture stories.

Let me know.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Look better soon

This is my sister-in-law's sister. She does a fantastic job and this is a ridiculously awesome deal.