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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Crested Butte, Colorado

I am finally getting around to blogging about our AWESOME trip.  It has taken me awhile to sort through the photos, unpack, and recover.  We had an amazing time and I want to thank the Hill family for sharing their wonderful vacation home in Crested Butte with us. This was the first time for any of us to visit this unique little town, and we fell in love.  My mom agreed to come with us on this trip and I am so glad that she did!  We made some GREAT memories that I know we will be talking about for years to come.  I figured that the best way to blog all of the details would be to take it day by day.   

Wednesday, July 18th
I had the bright idea that if we left Fort Worth around midnight on Wednesday, the twins would sleep for most of the trip.  Tayden stayed up until about 1:30 and Brooklyn lasted until around 3:30.  They were both so excited and kept saying, "We going to Colorado to tall, tall mountains."  I drove until we got to Dalhart at around 7:00 a.m. and then Tim took over and drove the rest of the way.  My mom, who I must say was totally against our night driving, kept constant vigil from the backseat, asking me every 20 minutes or so if I was still awake.  She didn't sleep a wink, and I got about an hour of sleep once Tim took the wheel.

Thursday, July 19th
We stopped for breakfast at a McDonald's in Raton, New Mexico, and let the twins stretch their legs.  We arrived in Gunnison, Colorado at around 2:00 p.m. (which is about 20 min. from Crested Butte).  I dropped my mom, Tim, and the twins off at the local park and went to Safeway to get all of our groceries.  I stuffed the sacks in spaces between our luggage, picked up the crew and we headed to CB.  The house where we stayed is in Crested Butte South, which is about 6 miles from the town of CB.  We decided to stop in town to grab lunch before heading to the house to unpack.  We stopped at the Sunflower (a little deli) and got delicious sandwiches to go.  The temperature was a pleasant 85 degrees - pretty amazing compared to 106 back at home. 

We arrived at the house and took a tour.  It is an absolutely beautiful home and the views are incredible.  The kids played outside while we ate and then we went to work unpacking.  The twins took late naps and when they woke up we went back to town to explore.  We weren't really hungry for a big meal, so we found a yummy ice cream place - Three Bowls to try.  They make all of their ice cream fresh each day and feature savory flavor combos such as salted caramel and strawberry basil.  We headed back to the house and settled in for our first night.  We were able to sleep with the windows open - wonderful!!!


living room

dining area



Friday, July 20th
We woke up and I made breakfast with Brooklyn's help.  The Dish Network guy was coming to install cable and internet so we left Tim at home and went to explore the neighborhood park.  It was a great park, but all of the equipment was too hot to play on.  We let the kids explore for a bit and then decided to drive in to Gunnison for a Sonic ice tea.  One of the neat things (except when craving a Sonic tea) about CB is that there are no chain restaurants or stores.  There are no fast food places and everything is owned locally.

We arrived at Sonic and as we waited I started to look at Facebook.  This was my first time to have phone service since the night before.  Everyone was posting prayers for Colorado, which really freaked me out a bit.  I soon read about the devastating masacre that occured a few hours away in Aurora.  I still cannot believe that someone would do such a terrible thing!  We have had shootings in our schools, malls, churches, and movie theaters, which goes to show that no place is off limits.  We got the twins their first ever cups of Sonic ice.  They were so excited, but both of them had dumped it in their laps before we got out of Gunnison.

On our way back to the house we stopped in the small town of Almont which had perfect access to a beautiful river.  SueSue taught the twins how to throw rocks in the river and she even had luck skipping a few.  They absolutely loved this!!!  Despite not having on swim suits, they both got right on in.  We were there for over an hour and they would have stayed for many more hours.  We promised to come back with Tim very soon.  Once we got to the house the twins went down for their naps and with the newly installed dish we were able to watch the news about the shooting. 

We had dinner at an amazing restaurant - Slogar, which is very much like a Babe's.  You get a heaping plate of fried chicken with all of the sides served family style.  Their biscuits were to die for as well as the mashed potatoes and corn.  As an appetizer they bring out a relish tray with cottage cheese and tomato chutney.  I had been warned that this stuff was great and even though I am not a tomato fan, Tim and my mom loved it.  They also had wonderful tea!  After dinner, we walked up and down the main street - Elk Avenue and looked in the windows of all the shops and restaurants. 

my assistant

at the park

sporting potato head's teeth and earrings

out of order - oops

Sonic ice

pure bliss

she splashed the lens of my camera

SueSue the skipper

we found a fossil

Elk Avenue

this sign was the joke of our entire trip

Saturday, July 21st
We ate a good breakfast and then headed up to Mount Crested Butte, which was only a 9 minute drive.  All along the way we passed cars pulled over on the side of the road which were cheering on runners that were taking part in a 150+ mile relay.  They were running up the mountain alongside our car - true atheletes!!  We arrived at the mountain resort which is a wonderland for children.  They have rock climbing, miniature golf, ski lifts, bungee trampolining, and a childrens' museum.  We had been talking about jumping on the trampoline for a few days, so we headed over to let the kids try it out.  As we waited in line, we were able to watch as the relay teams crossed the finish line feet from us.  Pretty exciting!  I must say that I expected Brooklyn to love it and Tayden to fear it, but as usual, I was completely wrong.  Brooklyn went first and jumped a little bit.  She never cracked a smile, remaining serious the entire time.  Tayden was a natural.  He jumped and jumped and kept telling the guy working the cords to go higher and higher.  Yes, the child who is afraid of the train at Chuck E. Cheese was bungee jumping 30 feet in the air.  Brooklyn was much more comfortable cheering him on from the ground.  After jump #1 he wanted to go again!  He enjoyed the second time even more and went even higher.  

As we headed back down the mountain, storms rolled in and the temperature dropped to the low 50s.  We stopped in town at Sunflower for more delicious sandwiches and then headed home for naps.  That night we went back into town and got pizzas from the Secret Stash.  They were very good!!!

she was not liking this at all

He was so excited

higher and higher


Sunday, July 22nd
After breakfast, we headed back up to Mt. Crested Butte to visit the Trailhead Childrens' Museum.  This was one of the most amazing places I have ever been.  They had every thing imaginable for the kids to play with and explore.  Upstairs was a pretend farm, garden, pizza kitchen, jungle gym, music center, pirate ship, digging pit, and art studio.  Downstairs they had a science lab and toys that were geared towards math and logic.  This place is a teacher's paradise!!!  I saw so many things that I want to recreate in my classroom.  There was one other family there, so we were able to sit back and watch the kids have a great time.

After playing at the museum, we went back to the bungee trampoline.  Both kids were saying that they wanted to jump, but when our turn came Brooklyn decided to sit her turn out and watch Tayden.  He loved it again and wasn't phased by being shot up in the air so high.

We then decided to go to Gunnison to get McDonald's for lunch.  On our way back to the house we stopped at the river in Almont to let the kids play.  I was prepared this time and packed their suits, even though Brooklyn never ended up in her's.  I had been saying for a few days that I would love to tube down the rapids, but we never could find a place that carried tubes.  Tim and my mom kept daring me to go for it, but I wasn't quite brave enough.  I loved playing at the river and it was definitely one of my favorite parts of the trip!

We skipped naps that day and put the kids down early so that they would be ready to get up the next day to head home.  Tim and I went into town and got Chinese food from Ryce and had to stop and get ice cream from Three Bowls once again.  This time I tried a creation with corn and strawberries and it was great!!  We did laundry, watched tv, and then sadly turned in for our last night in Colorado.

award winning coffee


this was my favorite toy as a child - I dreamed of working at the local grocery store

checking out the produce

farm animals

pizza kitchen

pirate ship

making music

DJ Dada

the restaurant

not sure what these were called, but they were awesome

making pizza

that's my boy

she loved the chef hat

pirate Brooklyn

Itsy Bitsy Spider

painting ladybugs

She loved her "paint jacket"

tool table

space ship

Dada put on a puppet show

the mad scientist

balance beam

Jump #3

Monday, July 23rd
We left the house around 9:30 a.m. and headed for Royal Gorge.  We stopped along the way for coffee and breakfast.  When we arrived, we drove across the scariest suspension bridge in America and then parked.  We rode the incline railway, the aerial tram (red box), and the carousel about 8 times.  Brooklyn loved it and wanted to ride it again and again, but Tayden was scared to death (yes, the child who flew 30 feet in the air).  We saw beautiful mountain views and the river winding below.  As we rode the red box across the gorge (SueSue sat this one out) the twins loved looking out the windows.  While we waited in line on the other side to come back Tayden and Brooklyn befriended everyone else in line.  By the time we reached the car we were all hot and exhausted.

We left Royal Gorge around 5:00 p.m. to start the long trek home.  The twins took a long nap and we grabbed a late lunch at a town on the way.  We stopped at the McDonalds in Dalhart so the twins could eat and change into their pjs.  I started my shift of driving and my mom sat in the front seat to keep me company.  Tim and the twins were asleep before long and slept the rest of the way home.  My mom and I had great conversations about our family history, marriage, and her childhood.  We stopped a few times to potty and for tea to keep us awake.  We arrived at her house around 5:30 a.m. and were at our house unloading the cars by 6.  The twins and I went to sleep and Tim worked for awhile before he crashed.

We had an amazing time and the twins are still talking about all of the fun they had in Colorado.  Brooklyn started calling my mom Susan about halfway into the trip and would always say, "Hey Susan- whatcha doing?"  She loves her SueSue or Susan and slept with her 3/4 nights.  I would come down in the mornings to find them on the couch reading books while drinking milk and coffee.  Tayden called Royal Gorge - Royal George, so my mom started calling him Tayden George, which he still calls himself.  Anytime we would laugh at something, they would say, "That's larious!"  The drive was a bit long, but the fun we had was well worth it!  The twins did suprisingly well in the car and there was only a few times when they got antsy.  I am so glad my mom went with us.  She has always loved Colorado and she was in need of a vacation - if you can call a trip with 2 two year olds a vacation.

the scary suspension bridge

looking over the edge

red box that goes over the gorge

Brooklyn and SueSue

I'm making a scary face, not sure why, maybe because Tayden is digging his nails in my shoulder for dear life as we sit on the carousel

on the incline railway

at the bottom of the gorge