Wintery Fun in Utah

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We spent this past weekend in Utah visiting my brother & sister-in-law, and last week, I thought I would be writing a completely different post. We had planned to have some snowy fun with my Texas boys, and try out skiing at Snow Basin. Well, fate had different plans for us! We still had fun but it was certainly different fun!

It wouldn’t be a trip I was on without plenty of misadventures and they seemed to surface right at the start! I always like to take one of the earliest flights out of the day when we leave for any trip. It allows us to maximize our time at our destination, and we usually arrive early to get breakfast at the airport. Our flight out of DFW was at 8:15 so we arrived at the airport at 6:15, thinking that would be plenty of time! Our terminal was under construction, and every passenger received a notice with their booking to use the one open security gate. I have never seen such a line at security! After about an hour with two impatient kids, one of the employees came towards the back of the line to inform us that another security checkpoint was open at the other end of the terminal, and had been the whole time. Seriously??? So we booked it over to the other security point, finally made it through and had about 15 minutes before boarding! Ugh!

flying to Utah
Ready for Take Off

I found a 7-11 in the terminal (yeah I don’t get that one either) and we grabbed gas station donuts, some drinks, and coffee for mom, then booked it to the gate. We arrived just as the gate agent was saying the flight crew was running late but would be there in approximately 2-3 minutes. We wanted to sit down and eat our breakfast but I kept thinking boarding would begin any minute so we stayed in line, and ended up standing around for over half an hour. Did the gate agent read a text wrong or something? Big difference between 3 minutes and 30! By the time I boarded the plane my gas station coffee was cold and gross. But, we were on the plane which was a massive improvement from the last time we visited and attempted to fly stand-by.

The boys were immediately excited to see snow when we landed! Almost more so than they were to see their uncle! They are Texas boys, and it had been exactly 4 years since we had seen any snow in our area!

My brother took us to this little place called Sill’s Cafe for breakfast, and my sister-in-law and niece met us there. This is one of those little hole in the wall places that always has a line out the door! We immediately figured out why, too! Not only did our waitress have our food out super fast but it was so good! They have these things they call scones but they’re not scones in the way I know them… they’re more of a fried batter, funnel cake type thing slathered in cinnamon butter. Holy calories, Batman! Every calorie was totally worth it!

playing in the snow
My brother’s view from the backyard!
playing in the snow
Luke and Ryllie in the Snow

We headed out to my brother’s home, which is a ways outside of Salt Lake, to get ready for the snow. We were going to sled and make homemade pizzas that day, then go skiing the next day up at Snow Basin. The kids immediately went to play in the yard! They could not wait to get into the snow! Mike’s house sits adjacent to some land that they’re allowed to use, so their family includes 3 dogs, 2 pigs, 2 horses (plus one on the way since one is pregnant), 2 goats, and a cat! They also have incredible views.

The Sledding Hill

We got bundled up and went up the street to their neighborhood sledding hill. I was a little nervous because Landry has always needed to be talked into going on rides, and hates to go fast or feel out of control. He refused to do the sledding hill at Ice, so I thought for sure we were going to have a fight. I was shocked to find that he just immediately went for it! And immediately ate it, but got up laughing! Haha!

All was going well until suddenly it wasn’t. We were all headed back up the hill after a run when out of the corner of my eye I saw Luke take off with a running start, and go head first down the hill on his sled. He was going so fast that I knew it wasn’t going to end well. He hit a jump and was airborne, flipping once then coming down on his shoulder and neck, with his back end crunching over the top of him like a scorpion.

Broken Collar Bone
Before going to the Dr

Once he hit the air, we all knew he was not going to land well and would probably be hurt, so all of us were running down the hill before he even came to a complete stop. Luke is tough. If he gets hurt he cries for a moment and then quickly brushes it off and is ready to get back to playing. I knew we were in trouble when he was not pulling it together after a couple of minutes. We decided sledding was over and we would assess the situation at Mike’s home, so my brother scooped him up and carried him all the way back up the hill to the car.

It took about 20 minutes to get his shirt off (another sign we were in trouble); it was causing him a lot of pain for us to touch his shoulder area at all. Then, I saw the very visible bump. CRAP!

I think at that moment we all knew, but were trying to will the bone not to be broken. We got some ice on it, got him some water and a sucker and everyone started texted friends who were in the medical field. Every single one told us to take him to an urgent care, so off we went! Mike stayed home with Ryllie and Landry, and Kyllie drove me and Luke to the doctor.

Intermountain Hospital, Layton UT

I do have to say, that if you find yourself hurt on vacation in the Salt Lake area, I would HIGHLY recommend the Intermountain Hospital in Layton. They had only been open for six weeks so it was nice and clean, and the staff was incredibly friendly! The front desk ladies took one look at Luke and helped to expedite our check-in process to get us as high on the urgent care list as possible. She even apologized that my copay was going to be for urgent care, not a regular copay! I was just happy it wasn’t an ER copay since it was after 5:00 on a Friday night! We were back in a room in under 15 minutes. The nurse and doctor were both so sweet and spoke directly to Luke. The doctor decided not to put him through the pain of an exam and sent him straight to x-ray.

While we waited, we were texting with our family and friends to give them updates, and back and forth with my brother who felt terrible. Poor Mike, first his nephew got hurt just a couple hours into the trip, then his daughter had a massive poopy accident while he was trying to make us all a nice dinner to have when we got home. It threw him for a total loop. He for sure had the hardest night of all of us, haha!!!

Luke's broken collarbone x-ray
It’s broken!

It didn’t take long for the doctor to come back and confirm that the collarbone was broken. He had Luke set up with a sling, instructions to follow up with our Dr once we got home, and had us out the door very quickly.

Building a Snowman
The boys first snowman

Since we weren’t going to ski, we decided to start with a lazy morning at home. Kyllie got up and made everyone breakfast while the kids lounged around a bit. Then they decided to go out and build their very first ever snowman with Uncle Mike. Luke helped, one-handed!

Snow Basin
Snow Basin

Even though we couldn’t ski, we thought it would still be fun to go check out Snow Basin and explore around a little bit. It really is a very pretty resort, and the boys were excited to see the skiers.

buy lift tickets
Snow Basin gondola
Taking the gondola up at Snow Basin

We decided to take the gondola up the mountain to ski lodge and have lunch up there. The restaurant up there was really good! We had the biggest plate of nachos I think I’ve ever seen, tacos, and pizza (totally nutritious, I know). We also had to get the kids hot chocolate, and it was legit! Luke loved it!

top of snow basin
Snow basin

It was super snowy on the mountain that day! In hindsight, I’m glad we didn’t get to ski. I haven’t been in about 20 years, and while it would have been fun, I was never very good in those conditions. I would panic if I couldn’t see very far in front of me. This probably would have freaked me out if I was trying to keep up with the boys. But it was absolutely beautiful to look at!

Snow Basin
Checking out the snow at Snow Basin

The boys couldn’t believe how much snow was up on the mountain! It was piled up over their heads!

After we left Snow Basin, we decided to head over to the Park City area and visit the Ice Castles at Midway!

Ice Castles Midway
Anna & Elsa at the Ice Castles

Standing right outside the Ice Castles were Queen Elsa and Princess Anna! So while we didn’t get to go to Disney, we did get to see some Princesses!

Ice Castles Midway
Ice Castles

The Ice Castles are in this large open area and have several really fun slides made out of ice. Mike got a little stuck! Haha!

Ice Castles

Elsa even froze the fountain! We were there for about an hour or so adventuring around.

Ice Castles

It was really cool to see how they were able to make the entire space out of nothing but ice!

Utah Sunset

We got home just in time to get dinner going and were greeted by one of the most beautiful sunsets we had ever seen! It was the perfect way to cap off a fun day in the snow!

horseback riding in Utah

The next morning it was time to head back to Texas. Landry had one more thing on his to-do list first and that was to take a ride on Uncle Mike and Aunt Kyllie’s horse!

We had a great time and can’t wait to go back next winter when we hopefully can get to try out skiing!

Have you ever had a vacation mishap like ours and had to change plans last minute like we did? I’d love to hear about it in the comments! If you’re looking to plan a wintery fun trip, I’d love to help you! Email me at today for a free quote to anywhere you’d like to visit!

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  1. Chloe | 5th Mar 19

    Wow, that’s a beautiful winter wonderland. This makes me want to put Utah on my travel list.

  2. Olayinka | 4th Mar 19

    I’ve never been to Utah before but it’s definitely on my list of Midwest states to visit. This is a great post and it’s great that your family had a good time

  3. Jennie | 4th Mar 19

    Wow what a trip! But at least there were some ups along with the downs!

  4. Madi Rowan | 3rd Mar 19

    I can’t get over that view of the mountains! It’s incredible! So sorry to hear about your little guy! But sounds like you all had a nice time, regardless! 🙂

    -Madi xo |

  5. Vonetta | 3rd Mar 19

    Wow! Quite a trip! I visited Utah for the first time this past summer. I was just saying how I’d like to visit that part of the country during the winter. I hope your little man is doing well.

  6. Lauren | Laurel and Iron | 3rd Mar 19

    Oh my goodness! This trip looks like it was so much fun! Utah has always been on my bucket list but I honestly never considered a winter trip!

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