Sunday, May 31, 2015

Colorado - VACATION - 2015 - Part 1

Thanks to an inheritance from Grammy, I had the opportunity to spend a week in Colorado for vacation.  My friend Kris joined me on this adventure - and since she used to live in the Denver area, she was the perfect tour guide to have along!  : )  

We left on Saturday, May 23rd & headed to Omaha for the evening.  I'd planned to meet up w/ Joy & her family & my Omaha parents, but the timing just didn't work out on that leg of the journey.  D'oh!  We stayed at a Holiday Inn Express & when we arrived to check in, it was to discover - I'd apparently already checked in?!  *confused laugh*  Yeah, so, apparently they checked in some lady named Michele, and under my reservation.  No one double checked the name & address on the paper this Michele signed, apparently... LOL We finally got that straightened out - the front desk lady was really friendly & nice! - & headed up to our room.  Very nice accommodations & I can recommend this hotel!  : )  

We were quite famished & while I would normally go for Runza while in Omaha, at the time I thought I would be meeting Carol or Joy or both there the next day before we headed out.  So Kris & I decided to give VooDoo Tacos a try, as we'd both heard of them but hadn't eaten there.  

Crazy atmosphere, and really good food!!  : )  My taco was a little too spicy for my liking, but still yummy!  And they have ALLIGATOR on the menu?!  Wow!  (I didn't go w/ alligator this go-around, but wouldn't be opposed to trying it if we ever go again!)

Sunday, we tried to get in touch w/ Carol before we left, but that didn't work out, so we grabbed some coffee & began the 8 or so hour trek across Nebraska and into Colorado.  It was a pretty easy drive - lots of stops & we stuck to pretty healthy snacks.  I love stopping at truck stops because they usually have hot food and fresh fruit choices, rather than just the same chips & candy for travelers.  We got some apple slices & grapes & strawberries & popcorn & of course more coffee.  ; ) 

Colorado is in Mountain Time, which is an hour behind the midwest, so that took some getting used to.  Not as much as it will take when we go back & LOSE that hour... *groan*  *laugh*  

I love the mountains.  I love seeing the foothills & Pike's Peak & just being NEAR them.  I felt this same way in Alaska & while traveling east.  There's just something about mountains & the ocean that makes this midwest girl's heart go pitter pat!  *grin*  

Our hotel home-away-from-home for the week was a Drury Inn & Suites.  This hotel is the BOMB!  So amazing - the room is so spacious & comfy, there are shower gel & shampoo & conditioner dispensers in the shower, and we are treated to breakfast AND dinner (plus free adult beverages during dinner) AND free popcorn & soda in the lobby until 10 at night.  AMAZING!  :D  The staff are all super friendly & I've enjoyed talking to them each time we're coming or going.  

We had some great food & I tried a local beer from CB & Potts for dinner Sunday night.  I'm not a big drinker, so I ended up only being able to drink half the glass, but it was good!  : )  

Monday we grabbed coffee (we grabbed coffee every morning, really, either from Starbucks or Caribou - sadly, we didn't make it to any of the local coffee shops, except one, because the chains were in such convenient locations while we were on the go.) & headed out & about.  Denver ComicCon was happening downtown, so there were some neat things to see!  We went to Red Rocks for a bit, but discovered that Kris's batteries were dead in her camera & also it was PACKED because everyone had Memorial Day off!  So we just went up one path & then decided to tour Golden & try Red Rocks on Tuesday.  : )  

 I loved seeing everyone dressed up!  Reminded me of DragonCon in Atlanta... 


 Uhhh... NOPE!  


Golden is a lovely little town w/ lots of restaurants & shops.  We went to the Windy something Cafe for lunch & I picked up a couple souvenirs for peeps at a little shop.  One thing I absolutely LOVE about this state is that everywhere you go there are dogs & the towns set out bowls of water for them so they can have a drink wherever.  LOVE IT!!  :D  

The weather was very cooperative!  
It was sunny & nice until about 2 or 3 every day, then the sky would look all ominous, but usually the rain wasn't heavy & held off til we were inside.  ; ) 

We also went to Kris's friend, Monica's, for a cookout Monday night.  Monica's husband, Sam, is a very talented artist!!  Actually, the whole family are talented artists.  I wish now I'd taken some pictures of their work - it was fantastic!!  We had fun visiting for an hour or so & then headed back to the hotel to veg out.  We watched Despicable Me & I read The Deal by Elle Kennedy & it was a GREAT story!!  : )  And then I started While We Waited by Tammy Falkner - I absolutely ADORE her books!!  Super sweet stories!  


Tuesday, we headed back to Red Rocks after making sure to get new batteries for the camera!  That place is so amazing - it's at a higher elevation than in town, so ppl use the stairs to get workouts in.  There were ppl running laps & doing yoga & all sorts of stuff!!  All while there was a crew preparing the stage for an upcoming concert!  

 This guy's arms were just so impressive, I had to take a pic!  : ) 

 John Tesh was the reason I first heard of Red Rocks.

 What a neat idea!  Thumbs up, Red Rocks!  

There's also a nice little museum showcasing the history of the amphitheater & all of the acts who have performed there throughout the years.  I noticed one of my favorites, Walk The Moon, will be there in August... think I can convince Mom we need to come out here then??  *grin*  

We drove out to Loveland & visited a really nice, really BIG Harley shop.  I wanted to get poker chips & maybe a shirt.  I actually found one I really like!  : )  And the ppl were super nice & there may have also been cute boys.  *grin*

 There were a few bunnies hanging out around the hotel.  
They were very friendly & got really close!
I wanted to pet them - but I refrained... LOL 

We just sort of drove around for a bit, looking at the views & taking things in, stopping here & there.  Very relaxing & nice!  

I finished While We waited & started Tempting Tatum by Kaylee Ryan & I highly enjoyed that one, as well!  So sweet & a fun read!!  : )  

(Here are some lovely pictures of more things!)  

 Chatted w/ one of the maintenance guys about his new ride.

 Isn't this a cute lil tree?
I wanted to take it home... *grin*

 One of Phil's birthday shot glasses.  
Red Solo Cup, I fill you up... *laugh*


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