The Ultimate Arizona Bucket List: Part 2 Food


With a lot of help, recommendations and personal experiences I bring you The Ultimate Arizona Bucket List. I am breaking the series into 3 parts because there is just so much!

Outdoor Adventures – Food – Entertainment 

I hope y’all can benefit from this and if you have any additions/changes please let me know so that we can all enjoy the great state of Arizona to its fullest!


Breakfast & Doughnuts:
The Breakfast Club – Scottsdale
Perk Eatery – Scottsdale
Morning Glory Cafe – The Farm at South Mountain (Phoenix)
The Breakfast Joynt – Scottsdale
Matt’s Big Breakfast – Phoenix
Lamar’s Donuts – Phoenix
Bosa Donuts
Fractured Prune Doughnuts – Westgate
Donutsville – Peoria
Rainbow Donuts
Karl’s Quality Bakery – Phoenix
Crave Waffles – Westgate

Sprinkles Cupcakes – Scottsdale
The Sugar Bowl – Scottsdale
Sweet Republic
Rock Springs Café (Pie)
Top That Frozen Yogurt – Glendale
Churn Ice Cream – Phoenix
Nothing Bundt Cake
Thriftee Ice Cream Shop – Pinnacle Peak & 39th
Napoleon Bakery – Phoenix
Sweet Cakes Café – Mesa
Bahama Bucks
Frost Gelato
BJ’s Pizookie

Rio Mirage Café Y Cantina – Surprise
Blanco Tacos
La Santisma
Tapas Papa Frita
Don Rubens
Rito Burrito
Plaza Bonita
Salsa Blanca
Café Rumba
Mi Familia
Los Reyos de Tortas
Casa Bonitas

La Piazza Al Forno
Babbo Italian Eatery
Pizzeria Bianco
Nostalgi’a Cancione e Vino
Humble Pie
Organ Stop Pizza
The Parlor

True Food Kitchen
Culinary Dropout
Arrogant Butcher
Olive & Ivy
The Henry
The Fry Bread House
Chop Shop
George & Son’s
Ghengis Grill
The Herb Box
Pho Avina – Vietnamese
Chelsea’s Kitchen
Bluewater Grill
Bobby Q
Betty’s Nosh
St. Francis
Liberty market
Teds Hot Dogs
Queen Creek Olive Mill
Short Leash Hot Dogs

enjoy, xoxo


The Ultimate Arizona Bucket List: Part 1 Outdoor Advetures


With a lot of help, recommendations and personal experiences I bring you The Ultimate Arizona Bucket List. I am breaking the series into 3 parts because there is just so much!

Outdoor Adventures – Food – Entertainment 

I hope y’all can benefit from this and if you have any additions/changes please let me know so that we can all enjoy the great state of Arizona to its fullest!

Outdoor Adventures

*part 1 includes hikes (by city), races & water activities*


Camp Verde:
Fossil Creek – Strawberry (between Camp Verde & Payson)
Montezuma Castle
West Clear Creek

Lava Tubes
Lake Mary
Lowell Observatory (not outside)
Mt. Humphrey
Sunset Crater

Grand Canyon:
Havasupi – Havasu Falls
River Raft the Colorado River

Coons Bluff – rappelling
Salt River Tubing

Antelope Canyon
Hoover Dam
Horseshoe Bend
Lake Powell

Fossil Creek – Strawberry (between Camp Verde & Payson)
Tonto Natural Bridge
Water Wheel

Phoenix Valley:
Camelback Mountain: Echo & Cholla Trails
Estrella Mountains
Hole in the Rock & Papago Park
Lake Pleasant – Peoria
Pinnacle Peak – Scottsdale
Salt River Tubing & Paddleboarding – Mesa
Salt River Canyon Scenic Drive – Globe
Thunderbird Mountain – Glendale
White Tanks Mountains – Surprise

Devil’s Bridge
Jeep Tour
Slide Rock

Chiricahua National Monument
Mt. Lemon
Saguaro National Park
Wonderland of Rock

Tubac, AZ
Kartchner Caverns – Benson
Lake Mead National Recreation Area
Tumacacori National Historical Park
White House Ruins at Canyon de Chelly
Flat Iron Loop Gold Canyon by Apache Junction
Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument
Petrified Forest National Park – Holbrook
Salome Jugs
Vulture Peak – Wickenburg


The Color Run (January)
Phoenix Marathon, Half Marathon, 10k – Boston Qualifier (February)
Ragnar Del Sol (February)
Vacation Races Grand Canyon Half Marathon (March)
Bubble Run (April)
Vacation Races Lake Powell Half Marathon (October)
Questival by Cotopaxi (November)
see more here


Lake Havasu & London Bridge
Fossil Creek – Strawberry
Lake Pleasant – Peoria
Lake Mary – Flagstaff
Lake Powell – Page
Slide Rock – Sedona
West Clear Creek – Camp Verde
Salt River Tubing – Mesa
Water Wheel – Payson
Surprise Pool
Wet N Wild
Foothills Aquatic Center
Hubbard Swim Schools
Sunrise Mountain Pool

Splash Pads:
Pioneer Park
Tempe Beach Park
Phoenix Zoo – Leapin’ Lagoon
Goodyear Community Park
Kierland Commons
Scottsdale Quarter
Marley Park – Surprise
Rio Vista Park
Desert Ridge Marketplace
Pioneer Park
Riverview Park – Mesa

enjoy, xoxo

Wild Open Spaces

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Last weekend, we decided to ditch the valley and head up north to Flagstaff for some fresh air and cooler temps. Cam had been on break all week and we had been cleaning the house, painting, driving around completing errands, visiting family and we just needed a break! We woke up early and decided to pack up the pups and take a road trip. Right when we got up north it started raining and it honestly made me so happy. When you rarely see rain, you bask in it :) We headed out to sunset crater and came upon a beautiful field of wild yellow daisies which warmed my heart because they look like mini sunflowers, which of course are my favorite! Cam turned off on a dirt road that took us far back up the mountain and we let the dogs out to run. I love being able to let them roam off leash because they rarely get to and they love to explore. We grabbed some delicious pizza and headed out to a small lake. Of course being Arizona and the end of summer it was all dry but we let the dogs out again and just sat back with blankets and watched the sunset. It was so nice to not have technology to distract us, or people eyeing our dogs, or worries about school/work/baby budget. We just needed to hit reset and I am so glad that we did. We are planning to go back up soon and camp out before baby boy comes.

What do you like to do to hit the reset button?


Live Free and Don’t Die

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T-shirts: The Home T  c/o

I surprised Mr. Smith last weekend with an adventure of a lifetime… SKYDIVING! It was my second time; I went first with my Dad for our daddy/daughter bucket list about 4 years ago. I just knew that the Hubs was going to love it and scream just as loud as I would.

Unfortunately, I was the only one screaming and these crazy boys belly laughed at me till they cried. Apparently, Tim (the one that looks thrilled to be with me) has had over 16,000 dives and was on the world skydiving team, (WHAT!) He thought it would be HIL-arious to hang me out of the plane for a good 15 seconds while I screamed bloody murder. Did I lose my voice the rest of the weekend, no (shakes head yes).

My plan was to shake some adventurous spirit out of Cam.  Free his system of the need for danger if you will.  Live on the edge just a bit. Well the plan backfired. Now he wants to get his skydiving license and enroll to base jump and use squirrel suits. Oh lordy what have I created!? Hopefully we get good life insurance… (I joke, I joke) hashtag thegoodwife :)


Devil’s Bridge – Sedona, AZ




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(Mr. Smith) Top: Home T | Pants: Columbia | Shoes: Asics 

This weekend we took advantage of the amazing weather and drove up to Sedona, Arizona. One of our favorite ways to get away from the stress of life is to find beauty in nature. I love sleeping in a tent outside under the stars away from the city lights.  I enjoy taking a big deep breath of fresh air and most importantly away from technology and lists. It is easy for me to get wrapped up in our growing to-do lists and feel the anxiety of life. Sedona is gorgeous and if you get the opportunity to visit take advantage of it!

We went to hike Devil’s Bridge and took a 2 mile hike up to the site and then came the adventure. (side note, if you take your dogs, make sure they are well trained for some steep climbs towards the last .1 miles of the hike; our dogs did great but they hike often with us. Lot’s of other people couldn’t get their dogs up the cliff) When we were hiking back down to the car we must of taken a wrong turn at the end of the trail and added a good 4-5 miles to our return trip.  We didn’t recognize the scenery and we sat to check the map. As Cam was looking around, I saw a back of 5 or so coyotes running toward us. We usually let the dogs off leash to hike and we grabbed them close to put their leashes on. The coyotes saw us and stopped then quickly turned and went the other way. AGHH I was so scared! We decided to go back to a fork in the road and ran into another couple. We asked if we could tag along and once back to a different parking lot they drove us around the bend of the trail to our car. I am so thankful for meeting those sweet strangers and that they were willing to help us out! Overall, it was an amazing trip and I can’t wait to go back soon for a new (and safe) adventure :)


The Wild Life

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First off, I am in love with my new Express shirt so much so that I wore it two weekends in a row! But who cares, right :) Now if you need to know one thing about me is that I seriously GEEK out over animals. It doesn’t even matter what kind, I just want them all! So, hubs took me to the World Wildlife Zoo that is 10 minutes from our house. I can’t even explain how excited I was to find this living Africa in the middle of nowhere Arizona :) This happy girl was thrilled when a beautiful giraffe walked over and leaned down to lick my hand. I was like a little kid on Christmas! I also tried this three part pony tail to add some length to my hair since I am in the awkward phase of growing it back out and I loved how it turned out, apparently the little parrot above liked it too (:

Hope you have a wonderful weekend


Lake Powell Half Marathon



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Two weekends ago I completed one of my goals on my bucket list! I have a few lists and will be posting more about those later.  Cameron & I drove up to Lake Powell which is partially in Arizona and partially in Utah.  It was a crazy trip and took a lot longer due to some road issues we didn’t expect, but we tried to look up :)

Saturday morning was race day and I met up with my awesome race partner Lisa! Pretty sure I had to pee 5 times and was trying to stay warm as I shivered in the dark waiting for our race to start. Luckily my two best boys were their to support me!

Cam was photographer for the day and also captured the start of my race on video… more to come soon! He is such a great support to me and I love him more and more each day! I also grabbed two images from the race photographer Lucid Images UT; amazing work! Check them out here!

After the race, Lisa and I were pretty sick and extremely tired but we both placed in our age groups which made up for the shaking muscles and need to throw up… again. I placed 4th and was thrilled to have that accomplishment for my first half marathon! Thanks Vacation Races!

I pretty much locked myself in the bathroom and took a long hot bath then slept the rest of the day.  Sunday we packed up to head home but first took a gorgeous stroll up a race trail to grab some pictures.  Looking back at how far I ran the day before really hit home for me and made me grateful for my healthy body and that it puts up with all my  training, dancing, etc.

I love the pictures of Duke and how happy he was to run with Cam and play in the park.  He has so much energy and I love being a mom to that furry boy!


Salome Jug Canyoneering


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Mr. Smith and I AND two of our favorite couples went on a canyoneering trip a few weekends back.  What is canyoneering you ask? Yeah, about that.. I don’t really know, so I looked it up.  It is pretty much using a variety of outdoor skills (that our husbands happen to be somewhat experts in, thank goodness) including but not limited to, climbing, jumping, rappelling, swimming, hiking/walking or in my case scrambling through a gorge and sometimes over a waterfall.

Luckily, Arizona is one of the best states to perform such activity.  Yay for us…

I’m kidding… kind of. But seriously, we had a great time and learned a lot about each other and our stupid daredevil adventurous husbands. Check it out!

*If you are an avid outdoors man and want to know what we took… we bought along in our “backpacks”, wetsuits for the girls, 1 30 meter repel rope, a waterproof camera, cliff bars, waters, neoprene socks, harnesses and helmets for each person, a locking carabiner, a figure 8, as well as regular hiking gear.