Reflections of a Week in Colorado

Hello there! We’re back from a blissful week of skiing in Colorado with the kids. And what a week it was. Heaven with a few interesting stories. 😉

The truth is, my husband is a ridiculously awesome skier. I’m just average. But we have sacrificed our love of skiing for another sport called HOCKEY. Because of this, we barely ski. So when the kids were off last week on winter break, we decided to try something new… a ski vacation!

Last Monday, we flew out to Denver, Colorado and then drove to skiing HEAVEN: Beaver Creek. I had only heard about it- that it’s the greatest ski resort for families, Kelsey Grammar has a house there, and that the First Lady Obama recently vacationed in Beaver Creek. Well, all I can say is, it lived up to the hype.

After 4 days, we then headed over to Keystone Mountain, which was no less phenomenal. Skiing, tubing, KIDTOPIA, Camp Keystone, the largest ice castle IN THE WORLD, all made my kids… well… pretty darn happy.

I think today, I will blog in picture, as my words would not do this trip justice. Here are some moments, in random order.

Hubby and I skiing on Keystone Mountain. Check out this view!
On a sleigh ride at dusk (pulled by horses below) and a COWBOY to a 4-course meal served in a remote cabin on Keystone Mountain
Our ride to dinner. No joke. (A real treat).
Just a little view from our condo 😉
Getting outfitted for their ski rentals! Excited to hit the slopes.
Just dropped the kids at ski school. Heading out ALONE! Woo hoo!
Mountain Cat ride to the SUMMIT of Beaver Creek to eat at Beano's Cabin. GOOGLE IT. INSANITY. 5-course meal, and you EAT IN COZY FLUFFY SLIPPERS!
Beaver Creek Village by the ice rink
Night skating in the Village at Beaver Creek
Smores every day at 5PM at The Park Hyatt Hotel in Beaver Creek. Simply awesome.
The view while the kids were tubing. Breathtaking.
Daddy went tubing!
I went tubing too! In fact, we went as a foursome!!
My boys
I'm a pro skier!
It was PrezFest while we were in Beaver Creek, a celebration of American Presidents for President's Week.
My son made me make bunny ears. 🙂
The only thing we missed was Keystone's Night Skiing. It was heaven to watch. We were too pooped!
Every day at 3PM, chefs come out in the Beaver Creek Village giving out HOT FRESH CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES!
Nothing like hot fresh cookies
My ass is paying the price this week
My jeans wouldn't button up this morning. Truth.
Keystone has the largest snow fort in THE WORLD! It was very cool.
Two cool ski bums hangin' in the Village apres skiing.
On the mountain loving every minute of it!
We had a hot tub inside our condo at Keystone. Guess who was in there constantly?
Dinner at a restaurant called Bighorn Steakhouse in Keystone overlooking a 5 ACRE ICE RINK!!
Brothers. 🙂
Me. Check out the view behind me!
Gondola ride up to tubing. Shiny Happy People.
Hubby skiing. He took those double black diamonds WITHOUT ME!
The hot tubber.... AGAIN!
Apres Ski- wine by the outdoor fireplace in the Beaver Creek Village. Happiness is not the word here. Cheers!

As always, when you try something new, you usually learn something new. Below are some highlights, blunders, and lessons learned.

  • Sometimes, a couple just needs some “alone time” to regroup together. No kids. No guilt. The minute we put our kids into ski school, we breathed a sigh of relief. We’re ALONE! Life, kids, responsibilities, stress, all have a way of chipping away at a marriage, and often couple-time is the first to go. You need to make that time and connection.
  • Although there’s a fine line between pushing kids too hard, and not enough, I discovered this week, for the first time, that sometimes giving that tiny extra push really does make a kid stronger. The key is giving a “gentle, guided push.” My husband and I have been known to protect our boys, but this week, we pushed them a little harder, and they flourished.
  • There was a boy who was mean to my 8 year old son in ski school one day. He came off the mountain upset. I asked him what he learned from that experience. Of course I asked him what he learned, you know me! His answer, “That you can’t always be the prince.” That answer made this trip worth EVERYTHING. Life can be humbling. And that is not a bad thing.
  • I learned that things are not always as they appear: when I just LOST IT at one moment and raised my voice to my children in public, one father looked at me like I was a crazy person. Perhaps I did “look” crazy, but I assure you, I’m quite normal. Sometimes, we only see half truths. So, the lesson? Don’t believe all you see. Sometimes, they’re really just half truths.
  • Having sex in the high altitude could make you think you’re having a heart attack. You’re not. You’re just out of breath from the altitude. 😉
  • When we rode to dinner on a horse, in a sleigh, taken by a REAL COWBOY, I realized my whole tech madness is just that- MAD. These people work and play in the outdoors. In the fresh air. They live a simpler, healthier, more peaceful existence. I wondered if perhaps, I missed the boat in life. They seemed to have it all in a different way than perhaps you and I would define having it all… something to think about. Simplify.

So, all in all, this was definitely our best family trip. Beaver Creek and Keystone, you will be missed. We learned a lot about ourselves this week. A bientot for sure!

PS – I’d love your thoughts.

PPS – I joined Pinterest while I was away. It is one dangerous thing.

  1. As ever, a great article Erica. I love how honest you are and how intelligent your children are already! Your son’s reply to what he learned from someone being mean to him was indeed very humbling, we all have to realise this at some point. No harm in knowing it young! I’m glad you had a well deserved great family vacation, it looks amazing!

  2. You trip looks like it was a dream. I especially related to the part about simplifying life. Sometimes I wonder if all this tech madness is killing our mental and physical health. Another great blog post. Welcome back.

  3. We love skiing but have never skied in Colorado. I’m putting this on my Pinterest board as a destination to visit! What a blast!! Welcome to Pinterst by the way. Your next new addiction. 🙂

  4. Welcome Back!
    So many great reminders in this post- I especially love the part about 1/2 truths. That’s a whole conversation right there – the 1/2 truths we hold as true about others, and the 1/2 truths we hold about ourselves, not to mention the 1/2 truths we hold about others view us! So very rich.

    Thanks for adding some beautiful meaning to my day~

  5. Hahahaha! “Having sex in high altitude will make you feel like you’re having a heart attack”, I literally laughed out loud.

    Thanks for the recap and the lessons Erica; it’s truly amazing how a getaway can put life into perspective!

  6. Loved the post Erica!! My best friend, a Marine Iraq War Veteran, says when the Marines go in to clear any area they use a saying, “If it doesn’t grow, it goes.” I love to think of life that way, if you’re not learning, exploring, doing, you’re stagnant and not growing. If you bring that idea to anything you do, it will be a worthwhile endeavor. Loved the lessons you grew from and helped us grow from too!! You’re the best!! Love the pics of the fam! xoxo

  7. As a mom of three boys (between 3 and 12 yrs) sometimes I lose it in public. I think none of us are angels but we all do our best. Any mother who says she never loses it is doing a disservice to other mothers everywhere.

  8. I can also relate to the judging that goes on amongst parents. We parents should support each other not judge each other. Great post Erica. It looks like you had a nice time.

  9. I loved following your ski adventure via Twitter Erica and this blog post is excellent. I love the realization that married couples with children need to create moments for “us time” because it is all to easy to get caught up in the process of taking care of our kids… this is where so many couples get “off track” and if they are not careful, soon the only thing they seem to have in common are the kids. The importance of “us time” can not be stressed enough, I’m so happy to see it mentioned here. And hey, good to know that having sex at high altitude tests the heart a bit 😉

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.