Just go.

It’s 5:30pm Friday September 23rd and I have a plate full of business that I need to get done before my big move to Mexico in a week. It’s so nice outside though, the temperature has dropped from our scorching 100 degrees to 75. My perfect temperature, just enough for a light long sleeve shirt. I decided last minute to grab my hiking shoes, camera, and just go. You can procrastinate if it frees your mind and opens your spirit.

My favorite thing to do is to JUST GO. Many times when I’m stressing out but thinking about how much I would love to go on a hike I will often times just tell myself to go anyway. Think of it as dieting (this very much applies to me anyway) you have been eating raw food for so long but you just have a great hankering for that donut from your local bakery. You’re just going to sit there and think about that donut. Free yourself and just have it. Think of the world as your donut. 🙂

Just go!

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Hiking Chuckwalla Trail in St. George Utah || Photo lens: Lensbaby Spark.

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Utah Adventures || Moab || Arches National Park and Hole N” The Rock

The second day we woke up early and headed to Arches National Park! They say that there are 2,000 arches in the park and although I didn’t see 2,000 arches it was still amazing!
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Our first stop in the park was Balancing Rock, my cousin has a great obsession with big boulders so she enjoyed this stop very much. (“I like that boulder, that’s a nice boulder” – Donkey from Shrek) I also had a random elder Korean tourist lady want to take a picture with me in front of Balancing Rock, that was interesting. We also saw a jack rabbit! I could snag a photo of him because he was so quick but it was really neat to see the big guy running around.

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We did not do the hike to Delicate Arch (THE arch of arches in the park) because it’s supposed to be very strenuous and we wanted to explore as much as possible that morning.  We did however go hike the lower view point of it.

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We also hiked to double arches, that was a nice easy hike and you were able to get up close to some arches and see some nice views as well. The double art is almost cave like so it was fun to see how high we could get to the top!
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After all of the fun we could have at The Arches National Park before it got terribly hot outside we headed out to Hole N’ The Rock! I have read about this place and it’s been on my Utah bucket list and so happy I was able to go see it finally.

Hole N’ The Rock is a 5,000 square foot home that was built into a very large rock in the Canyonlands by Albert and Gladys Christensen. This place is so unique and the story is so much fun! We were not allowed to take photos during the tour which was a bummer because I wish I could share everything! I really liked the fact that they kept all of their belongings and furniture just how it was when they lived there.

Since Gladys Christensen loved knickknacks they placed all of these random knickknacks throughout the grounds along with a couple of gift shops. So many random signs and sculptures. The best part? The petting zoo! It wasn’t just any petting zoo though it was exotic which a zebra, camel, warthog, and the cutest little goats.
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I’m so excited that I was able to see Utah land that I have never seen before! Our Utah adventures were a success!
 
Beautiful days,
The Wonder Seeker

 

Utah Adventures || Bryce Canyon

Last weekend my little cousin and her friend from California came to Utah on a road trip and I was able to be their tour guide! I was luckily able to go places though that I have never been myself!
The first idea was to head to Zion and Springdale but unfortunately Zion was flooded and a boulder the size of a house fell onto the road block the passage way to get there. So I made a quick plan to head to Bryce Canyon and boy am I glad that I did, what a treat that was! I think I almost enjoy Bryce Canyon better then Zion.
When we went to Bryce we arrived at about 10am and were told that taking the bus into the park would be the best idea which is what I would suggest as well, you are able to look at all of the great scenery around you and not have to worry about parking.
Our first stop was inspiration point which is the famous view of Bryce Canyon. It was so much better then I had ever imagined it to be from what I have seen from postcards. The rock formations are so fascinating. The very top of the point took a little bit of work walking up the very steed slope. It works your legs and breath, that’s for sure, but it was worth it!

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As we were walking back to the bus stop there were some very interesting little things to see, such as this tree. Doesn’t it look like a spider?! I love it. There was also a very friendly little chipmunk who enjoyed the spotlight of many cameras in his face. I of course had to test my limits to see how close I could get to get. The lens I had on doesn’t zoom so I did indeed get extremely close until I scared him away, which the tourists didn’t like so much.

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The hike that we decided to take was Navajo Trail which is about a 2 mile loop which begins at Sunset Point and you take a troll down Wall Street and you can send your way up to see Thor’s Hammer. This little hike was fantastic and I highly recommend it to anyone of any level of hiking. Wall Street is a fun little path that you take down the canyon. You don’t realize how high those mountains are until you’re down there looking up. Plus the temperatures going down into the canyon are so nice, the perfect temperature.

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As we walked on the flat land down the mountain we found the tallest tree that I ever did see and some pretty amazing rocks that had quartz in them! What a great surprise that was to see our in nature and not just in a rock shop. BryceCanyon_11BryceCanyon_12BryceCanyon_14BryceCanyon_16
When we hiked back up the canyon it was a hard work! We had to take a few stops to “admire the view” 😉 but in all seriousness the views were incredible and we were able to see Thor’s Hammer! My cousin Val loves Thor so she was pretty pumped about this. Although the ranger didn’t know why it was called Thor’s Hammer, we’ll take it!

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After hard work we headed out of the park to grab some lunch, luckily there was a buffet close by because my stomach needed it. The best part was the giant salad I got, anyone who knows me knows I’m obsessed with a salad buffet. After we filled our stomachs we took my car back into the park to see view points that the bus didn’t take you. My favorite was the little arch at the very end, how precious is that arch?
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To top off our Bryce trip we went into their cute little town to get ice cream! Because what’s a hiking trip without ice cream? It’s not the best one, I promise. Get ice cream after your hikes! There was also a great little rock shop (which we love!) however I saved my pennies for an even greater rock shop in Moab….stay tuned for that greatness!

Stay tuned for my Utah Adventures to MOAB!
The Wonder Seeker.

 

 

 

Oregon || The Coast

This past weekend we took a trip to the coast and it was so lovely. We stayed in a little cabin located in Tillamook. Our place we just a hop, skip, and jump away from the beach. The first night we were there we took a little walk down to the beach to enjoy the waves and sunset. That evening we played games and ate cake.
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Saturday morning we woke up and drove to Garabaldi to go crabbing. The last time I was in Oregon and we went crabbing we were on a deck, this time we took a boat out. The weather could not have been more perfect for us! It was so nice to just sit out in the water and relax. We also saw a seal in the water, yes, a seal! He was a little far out but how exciting is that? Some of of you may wonder how you catch crabs. Well your bait are fish heads (Yes…a little gross but I would rather handle fish heads than worms) that you tie to the bottom of baskets and you throw them into the ocean! You wait a good ten minutes and yank that sucker back in. There are a few regulations as to which crabs you can keep though. You have to throw out any females and you have to measure the ones that are males before you keep them, if they are under by just a hair they are considered an illegal crab and you can be fined for it. The most difficult part was trying to pick up the crabs without getting pinched! We were able to catch two crabs…the third crab came from someone off the water who caught one and didn’t want it, it was very generous of them! So we were lucky enough to end up with three crabs. Once we got back they steamed the crabs for us and we went back to eat them, num num num!
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For dinner we drove an hour to have a nice dinner by the ocean at Kyllo’s. I have a great obsession of oyster anything when I can get my hands on it and lucky me they had a oyster Po’boy. mmm yes!
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Sunday morning we saw the sky and thought it was going to storm. We walked down to see the ocean and there was thick and beautiful fog. There’s nothing better than a coffee in your hand and your eyes on the morning sea! Since the tide was so low we were able to walk out pretty far and gather treasures. I love treasure hunting, I was able to find some really great rocks for my collection.

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That was our great coast weekend trip!
Happy days!
The Wonder Seeker
Photography || Camera: Canon G7X | Editing: 1967 app

 

A place called Moon Farm || Fruita, Colorado

Whenever I ask somebody in Colorado if they’ve ever been to Moon Farm I am SHOCKED when they say no and exclaim “What? It’s only the happiest place on earth!” Moon Farm is a farm located in Fruita, Colorado and it’s full of magic. Playhouses to explore, baby bunnies and other animals, peacocks, and wonderful vintage and historical findings.
A little history about my family and Moon Farm. My grandfather’s sister, Ella, married a man name Wallace Moon. They moved to Colorado from Utah in the early 1950’s. They bought a large farm and this is where everything started. They were a creative couple between my uncle Wallace building wonderful things and my Aunt Ella teaching dance. Throughout their years together they adopted 7 children. The family started building tree houses and playhouses and that’s how Moon Farm began! School started coming out for field trips and then it turned into summer camps. Moon Farm is now a place to explore and open for a pumpkin patch during the fall.
I lived at Moon Farm when I was very young. Probably about 2 years old. Although I don’t remember this we have many photographs to show the great time we spent there. I lived in what I probably thought was a complete amusement park, what a time to be alive. I do remember the summer camp I went to while visiting Colorado to see my grandparents. I remember taking the Moon Farm bus and chasing the train while others yelled “CATCH THE TRAIN!”
There’s so many little playhouses to look around including a school (my favorite growing up) church, Mother Goose’s home, little old lady who lived in a shoe, a pyramid, castle, and so much more. Each little home has vintage and historical finds in them. There’s a house full of  old bears,  one of carousel horses,  and their most recent addition….a barbie house! They had a a huge donation collectible barbies! Here is a link to all of their homes to explore. You cannot forget their jungle of stuffed animals too.
There’s a bunny pen where you can go in and cuddle with all the bunnies. Seriously. I told you this was the happiest place on earth.They also have peacocks that roam around the area who like to show off their feathers from time to time. A couple weeks ago I stopped by Moon Farm to see my family and what was new at moon farm. Here are some photographs from my visit!
If you have a chance to stop by Moon Farm in Fruita, Colorado I highly recommend it!

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xoxo,

The Wonder Seeker

Personal Growth || Let’s begin.

I’ve officially been in Utah for a solid week now. One of my biggest goals when I moved home to Utah and started to travel was to really work on my personal growth and be the best person I can be physically, mentally, and spiritually.
Now that I am settled in I can start to focus on myself and for myself. Don’t let anybody ever make you think you need to improve yourself for them. Now that I am single and the first time flying solo as an actual adult I realized just how important personal growth is for yourself.
Here is a long quote which made me really think about my personal growth. I’ve never been a competitive individual. This I believe, made me the humble person that I am today. I always aspire to be a better person then I was the day before.

“I am an amazing human being, living an incredibly blessed life. I am worthy of all things wonderful. I grow and learn each day. I let go of regrets from the past and they hold me there and prevent me from experiencing the now. I may have experience true heartache in my lifetime but through that time I have discovered deep compassion. I do not feel the need to compete against anyone or be better than anybody else. I aspire only to be a better person than I was yesterday. I am grateful that I am given each new day to grow, learn and love.” — Carlymarie

Since there is so much to say about physical, mental, and spiritual growth I will be blogging about these on separate blogs. One thing that I feel has helped my personal growth in all areas is hiking and exploring. Which I have done quite a bit of this week and know I will be doing so much more weekly! I just went on my first “big” hike, a 6 mile hike to Zen Wall and Mo’s Valley which is in Green Valley Utah, it’s completely hidden and such a gem! You would have never known all of this was there just looking at the hills. I love all of the cairns everywhere, I’d love to go up there to make my own cairn, I think it would be a really great experience to work with your mind and balance. I’m completely in love with the variety of rocks I saw as well. Here are some photographs from my adventure!

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I’m very excited to share my goals and progress. I hope I can inspire others to always grow themselves as a better person as well!
xoxo,
The Wonder Seeker.

 

Traveling alone || Tips of traveling and what I learned

Hello beautiful people! It’s been a little while since I have made a blog post. As most everybody knows I currently made a move across the country by myself. I’m a single 23 year old female and I did it alone. I made it too! I’d be lying if I said it was a complete breeze but I think I was prepared for most everything.
I’ve had a few questions how it was, if it was hard, if I was scared, etc. I thought I would write a blog on tips about traveling by yourself or even with anyone else that helped me.
Don’t have a plan.
This was difficult for me because I’m a plan person. I’m a true Virgo if that helps you know my perfectionist personality. I didn’t have a deadline of where I was going which was really helpful because I could stop whenever I needed to. I stopped by 5:30 each day so I had time to get a room and dinner before the sun went down.
Expect delays and save for them.
Save money for extra hotel nights. I was SO thankful that I had enough saved because I spend 4 extra nights in hotels then I thought I would have. One night was in Indiana due to storms and I ended up staying in a hotel in Denver over the weekend instead of at a friend’s house.
Do anything you can to sleep well, especially if you are traveling alone.
Sleep is not something that I had the greatest time with during my travels and sometimes it was very difficult. I was either worried about my car, the weather, my next stop, and just being alone in a hotel was difficult for me for a little while. If you have to stop early, stop early. This is where not having a plan comes in handy. If you don’t have anyone to switch the driving wheel with, you have to keep your mind sharp at all times. Don’t take this lightly, fatigue driving is a REAL thing.
Feel comfortable where you stay.
If you are looking for really cheap motels but don’t feel comfortable for how sketchy it looks, please don’t stay there. Spend an extra $20 on the next place so you can feel safe. I don’t really enjoy motels as much as hotels because there’s nothing between me and the door. Most of my worry with hotels was that my car was not right there with me close though. Sometimes you just have to pick your battles so I ended up staying at hotels because the first night I was at a motel, I did not feel the safest. If you’re worried about the stuff in your car just make sure to park it close to the entrance and under a light, I never had any problems. Usually cars are pretty safe at hotels because people know it’s under cameras.
Keeping your belongings safe in your car.
This is something that was a constant worry for me because I don’t have a U-Haul and nothing is really hidden. My tip to you is don’t worry about it as much as I did, just follow these little steps. Do as I say not as I do. Before I left I got personal property insurance…that way if my things were stolen everything was covered. If you are also a photographer, GET THIS. I  know many people who have had their things stolen and it doesn’t sound like a fun time.
I read an article from a man who used to actually be a criminal and would steal from cars. He wrote and article on how to avoid that from happening to you and what criminals look for. I wish I could find the article but cannot anymore for the life of me. A few things that helped me were to always park it under a street light and to know that cars full of stuff rarely get robbed. They have about 20 seconds to bash your window and get whatever and run. If you have your car loaded with many things, they can’t tell what’s worth money and find it a waste of time. It made me feel really comfortable with his pointers and tips actually! It all makes sense too. So thank you…. kind criminal.
Keep yourself SAFE.
I think it’s very important that women have some sort of self defense protection, I used to brush off this idea and walk around Portland and Denver city by myself at night with NOTHING. I just don’t get scared by people but in all honestly…you never know! I now carry pepper spray with me in my jacket pocket when I’m walking around alone and keep it next to my bed, it helps me sleep a little better at night. I also purchased what’s called a The Cat. It’s a self defense keychain that looks like a cat and you slide your fingers through the holes, this makes the ears into a self defense weapon. You can purchase it from Amazon for $7. (Purchase yours here) It makes me feel really comfortable walking to and from my car. Also just walking around a place I don’t feel really safe in.
I would always let the front desk know that I’m alone and moving across the country. I would tell them my concern about my car and just to give them the heads up. Be friends with the hotel staff! When you are getting in and out of your hotel room just peak around the hallway to see if someone is watching and keep your noise level down when talking about your hotel room to the front desk. Don’t tell strangers your name and room number in hotels either. There’s also extra locks on the door for a reason, use them. All of these things made me feel safer.
Have an actual map.
I purchased a US road atlas and happy I did. It gives you a great visual as to what main interstates and highways to take. Sometimes our smartphones are not always the smartest. It’s kind of fun too, it makes everything so official.
Try to eat healthy…just a little bit
Eating healthy just doesn’t happen on road trips. I’m sure I’ve gained a solid 5 pounds. I was stuck in trucker towns for 3 days with NOTHING but fast food around me. When you have the chance to eats some veggies or a big salad, your body will thank you. Before you go on your trip try to pickup some healthy snacks for the road.  I went to Trader Joes and picked up quite a bag full of healthier goodies. My favorites were seaweed snacks, snap pea crisps, dried apricots. This avoided bad for you snacks at gas stations. I also got a bag of gummy bears for my sweet treat!
Always let at least one person know where you are, address, and everything.
If you can try to find out where you will lose cellular service. This is something I did NOT do and wish I did! I was going through Kansas to Denver and had NO phone service for 3-4 hours. Oh, I was also in a rain and snow storm. I was so scared that nobody would know where I was. I ended up pulling over and asking a worker at a gas station if I could just borrow their phone to let a family member know where I was. If you do run out of service, know that there are actually kind people in this world that would be more than happy to let you borrow their phone. Always try to keep in contact with somewhere you are. Whenever I would stop I would usually send the address to my parents.
There’s an app on iPhones that’s called Find Friends. One of my best friends actually added me on there so she could track where I was at all times, motels, gas stations, along the road. It’s almost board line stalker status BUT if you have someone you trust it’s really nice to have someone watching you at all times.
Stop, breathe, and gas up your car double what you think you should.
I tried stopping every hour. Even if it was to just pull over, stretch, drink some water, and breathe some fresh air. It keeps your mind awake! I also never let my gas tank go below half. I’ve heard it’s better for your gas mileage and you will never feel nervous about running out! Also, do not forget to take water with you. Drink a lot of it, yes you will have to stop and take extra potty breaks but it will reduce headaches, this is something I should have done more of. I got too many headaches.
Good music and audio books
Of course, you need some entertainment. A plus side to traveling alone is you can listen to the music you want, sing all you want, and listen to it as loudly as you want. Oh, I mean uhhh… keep it down…. 🙂 I recently found an app called Audible, which is by Amazon. Audiobooks are actually not that cheap, which was a little surprise to me…however, this gives you great deals! It’s $14 a month for any audiobook you wish to have that month (They usually range from $20-$30!) and 30% off additional audio books you purchase that month. Your first month you get a free audiobook! I’ve been listening to Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me by Mindy Kaling. Humor is my favorite so this was golden for my trip.
I hope this helped many of you for your future travels! Safe traveling!
xoxo, The Wonder Seeker!

 

Helping our bright and creative minds.

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I have anxiety, a lot of anxiety. Maybe you do too. It’s believed by a few people that I have seasonal affective disorder, I wouldn’t be surprised. I’m also in a creative rut. You too? What a terrible combination of things to feel all at once. We’re aggravated, emotional, and feel well…empty and a little worthless.
Now what? How do we fix this? Maybe if we lay in bed drowning ourselves in terrible Netflix shows long enough some energy and creativity will hit our body and mind. NO. We can’t do that. Why not? Us creatives have to WORK at being creative. The more you do and the more you create then more creative juices come flowing through your mind!
Here’s a few tips that I have learned through difficult times to beat off all of these monstrous feelings that enter our creative and bright souls.
  • Get yourself completely ready for the day. This is the most difficult part, especially in the winter when you just want to stay in your pajamas. I’m not saying to get dressed up in heels and bright hot lipstick. Clean up, brush your hair, lather on some amazing scented lotion, and throw on some pants.
  • Let in the light. I’m a big fan of keeping the blinds open to allow sunlight in. Sunlight becomes so important to me and my creativity. I think a lot of this comes from being a morning person as well… I don’t do well with evenings, my mind is usually shut off by 7pm.
  • Light candles when it’s dark and gloomy. I’ve had a fear of burning candles for a long time but have recently taught myself that they are not so scary and really help brighten my mood. Citrus and minty scents really brighten my spirit!
  • Clean and tidy. I don’t know about many other people, but I get a lot of anxiety when it’s dirty and messy. I’ll go a few day where it doesn’t bother me and then BAM, I literally freak out. I get nervous, aggravated, and upset. Whenever I need to feel better… I clean and tidy. There’s a book out there called The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up- The Japanese art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo. This book is on my spring/summer reading list
  • Take a bath. This is also something that I used to not enjoy but taught myself to enjoy baths once winter came along and they made me feel so much warmer and energized. Grab a bath bomb, bubble baths, and tea. Treat yourself! It’s also a good time to read that book you’ve been meaning to pickup for a few days.
  • Read creative books. There’s quite a selection of books I have kept around that give me creative inspiration. This includes my array of Annie Leibovitz books, The Secret, Steal Like An Artist, etc.
  • Appreciate a quite coffee shop. Since I work in a loud copy and print shop that rarely slows down in production it’s a really special moment when I can just sit down in a coffee shop that’s quite to enjoy my coffee and not take it on the go.
  • Surround yourself with color. If there’s something I want to work on but a little stuck on what to do I usually just pull out my jar of embroidery flosses and admire all of the colors. It sounds silly but color really is so therapeutic. Pull out your coloring books, watercolors, paints, and just create something.
  • Get outside when the opportunity arises. Since it’s been cold and gloomy, I try to get out whenever there’s sunshine. I’ve found it SO important to my spirit during the winter since I’ve been so down. Drop everything and just go walk a couple blocks while the sun is shining.
Although some of these tips might not help everybody, I hope they can help some of you that may have the same struggles that I do!
xoxo,
The Wonder Seeker

Let’s go seek wondrous life!

Oh, hi there!
I’m Mariah! (The wonder seeker)
I’m a colorful, creative, and curious individual.
It’s difficult for people to keep up of where I am and what I’m doing. Within the past 5 years I have traveled and moved to many places. Portland, Oregon ..San Jose, Mexico…and Denver, Colorado. I currently reside in Burlington, Vermont where I have lived the past year. & by the end of April I will be on a new journey, a big journey.
I have followed my heart, mind, and soul and  will be moving back to my actual home, St. George Utah. I will be traveling the west to photograph, blog, vlog, and start my coffee table book I’ve been dreaming about forever. Once October comes I will be headed to San Felipe Mexico to explore and keep doing the same thing. Basically the goal is to become a traveling hippie, hah!
I love to explore new places and cultures, create art, and learn new things. I love sharing all of these wondrous things with other people even more!
I have been blogging on and off a huge part of my life but most excited for what I have in store for seekingwondrouslife.com. I hope I can inspire others to go out, explore, create, learn new things, and live a happy and healthy lifestyle.
I am starting to work hard on my new blog and vlog. WordPress is new to me so I’m still in the process on educating myself!
I’m so excited to see where my new journey takes me!

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Xoxo,

The Wonder Seeker