Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Phoenix, AZ

The day after Christmas my dad, grandpa, David and I packed up and headed to Phoenix, Arizona to watch my brother's basketball team play in a tournament. My brother is a Sophomore at Huntington University and could dribble before he knew how to tie his shoes. He is totally invested in the sport, and we love him to pieces, so we are totally invested in supporting him. 

Even if that meant a 28 drive to Arizona. We always joke that he is my parents' favorite child, and after this, I have never been more sure of it. What kind of crazy parent would drive 28 hours for a few basketball games. My loving dad of course! ;)

My whole life I have always envisioned the dessert being as flat as my hair on a humid, hot, horrendous summer day, but perception is easily deceivable. I learned that about 10 seconds into our trip when we crossed the line into Phoenix, AZ. The place was full of mountains. Everywhere. And man alive were they ever gorgeous. The kind of gorgeous where you literally just stare at the landscape and are in complete awe that Jesus Christ painted this picture with his own hands. It took my breath away.

I mean how cool is this view? In a world that is usually so crammed full of chaos and plans, its so rejuvenating to see a view that is full of serene and peace.

After settling into our hotel, we headed to an adorable spot just outside of Phoenix called Glendale to grab a bite to eat. If you love food and are obsessed with Guy Ferari then you and my dad have a lot in common. With that being said, everywhere we travel we try to stop at at least one restaurant that was featured on Food Network's Diner, Drive-Ins and Dives. Luckily we discovered Haus Murphy's and boy oh boy was it life changing! To go to their website click here

The owner of the restaurant grew up in Munich, Germany and the food is made from scratch. My mouth is watering just thinking about how delicious the food was. 

We ate outside on the porch and it was as adorable as it could be.

Here was my view when we first sat down.

As it got darker, the scenery continued to get more beautiful. 

This appetizer is a must try if you ever get the chance to visit Haus Murphy's. Three different kinds of sauces, two different kinds of sausages and sour kraut. Gosh, I love sour kraut! 

This was my dinner. Sauerbraten with German friend pork and potatoes. My tastebuds were doing a happy dance. Calling this meal delicious is the biggest understatement of the year.

German sour roast served with potatoes and cabbage. David wolfed this down in a matter of seconds. 

And a dinner at Haus Murphy's wouldn't be complete without a little selfie of course. 
Love my sweet Dave.

We walked around Glendale for awhile before heading back to the hotel to get some rest. The next morning we woke up, ate breakfast, and headed off to our next adventure...

The Phoenix Zoo!

Me and David at the zoo entrance.

I know I am biased, but man alive, he is just so darn adorable. 

One thing that I absolutely loved about the Phoenix Zoo was how natural the landscaping was. There was a trail to climb up part of a mountain. I about passed out, died of a hard attack and basically crawled halfway up, but somehow we made it to the landing on top and the view was stunning.

Here is a picture of me and my dad after we finally caught our breath. 

Later that night we went to cheer my brother & his basketball team on! Obviously we were really enthused. 

On our way there we saw cactus after cactus. They were gigantically huge.

The next day we drove 3 hours to Flagstaff to see the Grand Canyon. & if you haven't seen the Grand Canyon before, I will be the first to testify that it is indeed grand. 

No picture can possible do this justice. It was beautiful. 

I really have to give Dave props for letting me take so many pictures of him. Poor guy. He is going to have to deal with my excessive picture taking forever. 

Then he insisted on payback & for a second I felt a glimpse of his pain. So awkward. 

So the next picture we snapped together. 

I just can't get enough of this beauty.

My Grandpa, Dave, & my Dad.

My Grandpa, Me & my Dad.

     As the sun was starting to go down the temperatures    dropped drastically. We all grabbed ourselves some hot cocoa from the local coffee shop, picked up some Grand Canyon sweatshirts for my mom & sister since they weren't able to come on the trip and were happy to pile up in the car & warm up. 

Relaxing in the back seat on our way home. I just love pictures where I can show off my double chin.

The next morning David, my grandpa & dad went golfing bright and early. I was the smart one and slept in.

When they got back, David and I headed on a little trip that involved crossing something off of our bucket lists....

Oh yes! In-N-Out Burger. 

We were all smiles.

If they would have let me, I would have eaten this whole box.

Later that night we headed to Gila River Arena for our first ever NHL game.

The night life and atmosphere outside of the stadium was so fun & was full of energy. They even had a mini hockey rink set up for little kids to play and fountain light shows. I loved it!

Isn't it so fun?

My two favorite men!

A picture with my dad by the balloon mascot. 

And then of course one with Dave.

And why not another selfie. Never too many selfies. 

Loved the arena. It was so clean, crispy & bright. 

Our first NHL hockey game, so of course we had to take a picture. 

Later that night we went back to the hotel room and celebrated the New Year & then it was up and at 'um at 4:00am to catch our plane ride home! 

Back to the cold we went! 

So thankful for such a wonderful week packed full of new adventures, laughs and love with my family. Phoenix is such a wonderful place to visit. 


  1. Looks like you had SO much fun! I love all the pics of you and Dave.. you two are beyond adorable :) Love you Mads!!

  2. So excited I found your post!! Making the 3 hour drive to see the Grand Canyon is exactly what I had been considering!! Sold!


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