July 26, 2015
Well, I have so much to catch up on! We have just spent the last three weeks in Colorado and loved it!!! Since I’m trying to cover so much time at once, I’m going to break this up into three separate posts.
For the first week (August 1-8) we were near Parker, Colorado and got to meet up with Lance’s brother and sister-in-law and their kids who we haven’t seen in over three years. His parents and sister also made the trip out so the whole family was together. This week had a few “firsts” for me….first time jumping at Skyzone (which was a BLAST!), first time looking around at IKEA (had always wondered what it was like and now I know I want to go back someday!) and first time being at the top of one of Colorado’s “Fourteeners” (a mountain with an elevation of at least 14,000).
The highlight of the week was staying at the YMCA of the Rockies near Estes Park (http://ymcarockies.org) for a couple of nights as a family. Everyone stayed busy with all of the fun activities they had to offer….tennis, mini-golf, basketball, dodge ball or just taking a walk and enjoying the beauty of the mountains. We also went for a hike around Bear Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park. It was a beautiful day to be there and the kids loved climbing the giant rocks that were along the way.
Walking to breakfast at the YMCA…look at that view!
Elise at the playground
I signed Elise and Ben up for the “Bugs, Bugs, Bugs” class. The instructor taught a little about insects and then sent the kids outside with cups to catch some bugs. Elise caught a worm and a potato bug and Ben caught a worm. At the end of the class they all let their bugs go. At one point the instructor was showing the kids a daddy long legs and talking about some of its features. Ben came right up to him, looked at the daddy long legs and (much to the horror of the instructor) proceeded to step on the bug three or four times. It was definitely dead. The guy just kind of stood here with his mouth open and didn’t know what to say. Ben just wandered off to catch more bugs.
Cousins, cousins, cousins!! Youngest to oldest
Grandpa and Grandma with all of the grandkids
Kornoelje Family Photo
Scampering up the rocks like mountain goats
Sam, the Magnificent!!
Joe channeling a little Lion King with Rosemary
Joe and Uncle Jeff taking a selfie
Joe and his Grandpa Kornoelje
On our way out of the park we stopped at this beautiful meadow. I just loved the flowers and birch trees!
On Thursday we drove to the top of Mount Evans (elevation 14,130). I’m not normally a wimp when it comes to heights…but when Lance was driving the curvy, narrow road up the mountain and I could look straight down hundreds of feet I have to admit…I didn’t love it. Once we were at the top, though, I felt a little better and even let some of the kids get out of the car. (Don’t worry, Ben stayed in the car. Are you kidding?? With how fast that man is?? He would have been somersaulting down the mountain in no time!) Everyone loved the mountain sheep that were perched on rocks and nimbly climbing around. We also stopped about half way down to check out Lake Echo and let Ben get out to stretch his legs. http://www.denver.org/things-to-do/day-trips-around-colorado/mount-evans/
Lance, Joe, Jeff and Lynsey biking down the mountain (sort of)
On the way back to Parker Lance and I stopped to explore the Red Rocks (http://www.denver.org/listings/Red-Rocks-Park-Amphitheatre/4574/). Joe and Abby had ridden back with their cousins so we only had the younger 4. Sam and Elise climbed all over the rock formations until we noticed a small sign saying “no climbing”. Ooops
Ben……licking the rock?!?!?! Well, they just said “no climbing”, they never said anything about licking them!
It was great watching all of the cousins get to know each other again. The older ones took great care of the younger ones and the younger ones adored the older ones. They played checkers, Wii and cards together (and now our family loves to play “I doubt it”). We had a pool/pizza party together one night and a campfire with s’mores another night. We said good bye to Jeff & Holly and family Thursday night.
Ben and Wynter with CeCe the bunny
Rosemary and Avery
Friday we went to visit Focus on the Family with Lance’s parents and sister and then said good bye to them also. That afternoon we drove around a little and decided to go see a lake we saw some signs for, but we made a wrong turn and instead found ourselves heading up a mountain on a narrow dirt road. Mount Herman is definitely not a fourteener, but we sure had fun exploring when we got to the top!
See what happens when we let Ben drive??
Even Rose loves to climb!!
Joe the Karate Kid
Abby and Ben
Lance, always the rebel!!
My Mountain Men