I might just start calling my husband ‘Sparky’ after this past week. I felt so very Ellen Griswold during our family trip to Colorado this past week. Our family of 4, plus my step-daughter Mazzy and my in-laws all piled in a rental van, drove 12 hours to Colorado Springs and spent the week in a cabin that was so far past Colorado Springs and civilization that we had no cell or internet service. It was definitely lots of fun mixed with your typical too-many-talky-people-in-one-place stress that comes with a big ol’ family vacation.
We arrived home last night around 9pm and I immediately plugged the camera into my computer and uploaded the 1401 photos I took along the way. Yes, 1401. Colorado is just pretty, okay??? And…and…and our kids are cute, too, k??
So, while I won’t spoonfeed you 1400 pics, I will be sharing lots of photos in the coming days. Hey, it’s better than watching your grandma’s vacation slides while she pinches your cheeks. I think.
First up: the drive. We left out of our North Texas hometown last Monday morning. For those of you that are unfamiliar with North Texas/West Texas, I know you feel my pain when I say the drive up to the New Mexico/Colorado border was…um..rather bland in the scenery department. There were lots of typical small Texas towns and lots of this:
We stopped in Amarillo for lunch at The Big Texan. You know, the place where if you eat a 72 oz steak, you get it free? It was featured on Man vs. Food, so we couldn’t resist stopping in for some steak. The place is over-the-top-Texas-stereotype fun and the food was super yummy. While none of us had the guts to attempt the 72 oz challenge, we sat near the stage so that we could watch a fellow patron give it a shot. Love the 1 hour timer that keeps people sweating while they try to choke down the steak, baked potato, 2 jumbo shrimp, salad annnnd a dinner roll to get their free dinner. Wow. The guy we watched had to call it quits with 10 minutes left on the clock. I admire his ability to know when to quit….or when to make a break for the bathroom.
I couldn’t resist snapping a pic of the beast as it was being cooked. That. Is. A. LOT. Of. Meat.
The kids all got cowboy hats with their meals.
I love this shot that Shayne got:
And I just need to clarify that in this next one, the kids are not crying….they just have a mean case of the sun squints. Or maybe they were crying for steak-guy’s stomach. Or maybe they weren’t. That sun was brutal, man.
Annnnd….back on the road. More Texas to be seen…
I can’t remember if this was still Texas or if we had crossed into New Mexico already, but I just love that sky!
The scenery began to get a little more interesting…
And we saw lots and lots of trains along the way…
And finally…Colorado Springs. But, we were too early (we split the trip, stayed overnight in Raton, NM and arrived in Colorado Springs before lunch on Tuesday) to check into the cabin yet, so we spent some time at Cave of the Winds.
While we waiting for our cave tour to begin, we enjoyed the scenery.
Breathtaking. I wish photos could do it justice. If you’ve never been, be sure to go. You won’t regret it. Unless you’re afraid of heights. Or mountains. Or breathtaking beauty.
I love caves. Sure, I’m a bit claustrophobic, but I seriously can’t think of anything cooler than being inside of our Earth. It’s just not something we can experience every day. Thinking about when and how the structures inside the cave were formed just sends shivers down my spine. Our planet is flat out amazing. Unfortunately my cave photography is not amazing, so here are two decent enough shots:
We grabbed our key and began what turned out to be a very long journey to our cabin. I mean, we knew it was going to be really far from Colorado Springs, but what we didn’t realize was how completely isolated it was from all of civilization. It was more than Elliott could take.
Fortunately those of us that remained conscious, the scenery was fabulous.
And we got to see quite a few abandoned gold mines that really brought us in touch with American history.
The country was teeming with wildlife.
And finally…we were at the cabin. Whew.
To Be Continued…..