Over spring break, after a whirlwind visit to Kansas City to see Legoland and Sea Life with the kids, Shon and I made the 11 hour drive out to Estes Park. At first we were going to spend the night in Nebraska, but since late nights are sort of Shon's thing (#2ndShiftLife), we ended up driving straight through and getting a last minute room at the Quality Inn. Free wifi, free breakfast, and clean room with a mountain view? Yes please. The lovely woman at the desk even gave us a discount for it being so late.
We spent day one driving around Estes getting the lay of the land and visiting all the little shops, including, obviously every single one of their Christmas stores. I would love to hear from anyone who knows why there are 57 Christmas stores in Estes Park, but I'll save that research for another story. We stopped to visit the exact spot where my mom and step-dad got married, sending them a quick photo, and of course, Shon listening patiently as I replayed the events of that day 11 crazy years ago (down to finding the Safeway where mom got her flowers and posing on the rock where they took their wedding photo).
For lunch we ate a ridiculous amount of delicious food at Ed's Cantina and Grill - we had queso with ground bison, and I had a bison taco, a lamb taco, and a chicken and avocado taco. All three were excellent, but my favorite was the chicken. Someday I'm going back to try the chimichanga. Unfortunately the chimi is a new discovery for me, and I had no idea about the amazingness I was missing out on.
After a full day of shopping, Christmas, and old school rock candy, we were able to check into our actual hotel, the Della Terra Mountain Chateau. A destination wedding location, Della Terra is home to several very private suites with private balconies and hot tubs. And the bathroom. Oh my goodness, the bathroom. Someday when I win the lottery and we build our dream home, it will have this bathroom.The trick is, if you go in the off season, you get the rooms for half the price of what you would pay during tourist season. We borrowed a movie from the theater room, ordered room service, and I'll be honest, I crashed early. Altitude plus a full day of walking plus a full stomach? I didn't stand a chance.
Stay tuned, it gets better!