Sunday, May 7, 2017

Spring Break

We took a great trip to Glenwood Springs for Spring Break. This is our third year going as a family, and the first year I actually got to ride the alpine coaster seeing as I was not needed to hold a baby up at the top. I won't lie, I was pretty nervous the first ride down, but it's awesome!!

Image result for chips and salsa meme
We left on Sunday just before noon and ate lunch that I packed for each kid in the car. I told them they could have a pop with dinner if they finished their lunch bags, and each of them did. I love the drive through the mountains, past all the different colored strata and across the Vail Pass. The weather was nice in Glenwood so we went right to the hot springs for a couple hours, then grabbed dinner at our favorite Mexican place in town. What is it that's so good about Mexican? It's the corn, right? The corn and the cheese? Yeah. That's just such an awesome combination. We stuffed ourselves with chips and salsa while trading Chips and Salsa memes. My favorite:

We stayed at the Hotel Glenwood Springs, at the base of the Adventure Park, and I have to say, it's what makes the vacation.
Yes, the hot springs are awesome. Yes, the Adventure Park, too. But if we stayed at a regular hotel the kids would not clamor to go back again next year. This hotel is totally awesome. They have their own pool and hot tub, with a zero depth entry, fountain, and baby slide for the littles, as well as a bball hoop, lazy river, and HUGE twirly slide for bigger kids. We spent SO MUCH TIME at this pool. Dan camped out at the base of the slide, quite literally playing the role of the Catcher in the Rye (except he was waist deep in water instead of rye) and caught the non-swimmers as they came shooting down the slide. My eldest had a great time playing HORSE with anyone nearby, attempting ridiculous and dangerous shots from In The Hot Tub! On The Steps! At The Opposite End of The Pool! Behind the Hoop! etc. We stayed three nights and on the last night they gave us a complimentary large pizza cooked by their pizza bar in the lobby, and a board game.

The pizza tasted good. It wasn't a true crust, just a Boboli type that's already cooked and they top it and broil it up so it's all melty. But the kids loved it and, did I mention, it was FREE? I thought it was such a nice touch that they threw that in for our stay. Also, they have a game room in the basement with Wii (Mario carts), a blackboard and chalk, bean bags, foosball table, and a little craft center with coloring books and crayons. We were down there quite a bit, and all the kids like having their own little room where they could hang out.

I decided ahead of time to spring for the kitchenette suite at the hotel and I'm thrilled with that option. We were able to eat something I cooked half the meals, and it also made breakfast much more pleasant. Their breafast is good: waffles, yogurt, cereal, juices, coffes and tea, fruit, hard boiled eggs, and toast/bagels/donuts. But I can't have hard boiled eggs, and the kids don't like them, so that left us without a protein option for breakfast. Also, the girls are dairy free. So I was able to bring my paleo sausage breakfast hash (loosely based on this recipe but adjusted to my FODMAP sensitivities) to heat up for myself, and have almond milk in the fridge for the girls to put in their cereal, and we were happy as clams. Other meals included fried rice, which I made by sauteing a chicken breast on the stove top and mixing it with chopped snap peas and carrots, then adding soy sauce and pre-cooked rice I'd prepared before we left. For two of the lunches I made sandwiches for the kids and served them with cut carrots and potato chips, and for Dan and I rolled roasted vegetables (prepared before we left) with cream cheese in a tortilla.

 We had spent all day Monday at the Adventure Park, going down the alpine slide a million times, playing laser tag (Meia got scared but the older kids had fun,) touring the caves, and watching 4D movies (yep, you wear 3-D glasses to watch a film, and the chairs move and shake, and it sprays you with mist for a full sensory experience.) The gondola ride to the top of the mountain is always fun, although the line to get on the gondola is less so. We waited an entire hour, and we were one of the early ones because all we had to do was walk out of our hotel after breakfast. My boys found a fiberglass stake while we were in line and started dueling with it, only to find that the fiberglass wasn't stable. They ended up with tiny shards embedded in their hands. I raced back up to the room to get my tweezers, but even so they were in pain until we got to the top and asked the gift shop lady for some tape. That helped a bit more (my youngest stopped holding his hand at his side and began to actually use it again after the tape) but I don't think they were totally free until they went back to the pool that afternoon. We got some great pictures of the boys in the Squeeze Box, and the weather was perfect.

Tuesday the weather wasn't great. But I knew that was predicted from checking the weather a week before, and I'd brought some movies. We watched Adventures in Babysitting (which is dirtier than I remember it and I'm hoping the kids were as baffled by some of those references as I was back in the day) Groundhog Day (which I had to keep assuring them was going to be awesome because it starts pretty slow) and the new Ghostbusters (which had me dying of laughter. Chris Hemsworth dancing at the end is so great!) As I've mentioned, there was enough in the hotel to keep the kids occupied, so we didn't have to brave the cold.

All the kids were sad when we had to leave; we spent the maximum amount of time in the pool as possible and then went to the park to picnic and walk along the river before finally getting into the car around 2 pm to head home. We stopped on the way back in Frisco for coffee/hot chocolates and treats and were back home by dinnertime. All in all, we had a wonderful time. Kids got along except for a couple incidents which is to be expected and didn't ruin anything. We're planning to do it again next year!

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