Monday, June 19, 2017

Family Vacation in Denver 2017

Greetings! We have returned from our first ever family vacation which was a short trip to visit friends in Denver. It was a pretty even split between really fun and really difficult, but I think (& I hope I'm right) that traveling with the kids will get easier each year. I didn't really understand the impact the constant high level of excitement and novelty would have on the kids (which resulted in a couple big meltdowns). But it was really fun to see our friends and to see the kids having so much fun. 

We drove up on Thursday morning. I was a little nervous about the drive but it went really well. MVPs of the trip included: the Polar Bear Polar Bear What Do You Hear? Sound Book, the Melissa & Doug Take-Along Shape Sorter, and a couple new Melissa & Doug Water Wow Activity Books. Plus snacks. Lots of snacks.

We stayed with our friends Tyffani & Bryn (who visited us in Durango last summer). Their son Elliott is exactly three months older than Abel. It was great to see the kids playing together. Elliott is very sweet and would frequently give unprompted hugs to Swede and Abel, which sometimes turned into full-body tackles. They also have a gentle giant of a Bernese Mountain Dog named Bandersnatch.

On Friday we went to the Denver Botanic Gardens. It didn't seem like that much was in bloom though. Maybe we are between the spring and summer seasons, or maybe I was too busy chasing after the kids to notice. Abel is at an age that whenever he's released from the stroller he runs as fast as he can either in the opposite direction that we are going or straight toward a hazardous situation such as the water lily pond. My friend Chesleigh also met us there, but I'm not going to share the photo of us together since she looks adorable and I look like I'm posing for a driver's license photo, which does not at all reflect how glad I was to see her. Let's admire the kids instead.

On Saturday we went to the Denver Zoo. The first half hour was really fun. Swede and Abel were so excited to see the animals. But I think the excitement caught up and overwhelmed them after that and we ended up leaving a little earlier than planned.

On Saturday afternoon we went to a water fountain in Tyffani and Bryn's neighborhood which might have been one of the highlights of the trip for the kids. It's often the easiest and cheapest thing that's the most fun! They loved running around and splashing (without the fear, in Swede's case, that her hair might get wet).

Those are the highlights! We headed back home on Sunday. The drive seemed much longer on the way home but we made it. There were some really tough moments throughout the whole trip but those memories are already starting to fade and all I remember is the fun. (Although I'm definitely not ready to plan any more family vacations for at least another year).


  1. How long of a drive was it?
    I hear you trips with kids are a lot different and really just feel like life in another place with just as much work (if not more!).

  2. You are too funny with your driver's license comment! I'm sure you loo adorable too!

  3. What a fun trip! And coming from a mom who still makes her kids (6 and 8) wear hats in the sun, I LOVE that these little ones are all protected! Traveling definitely gets easier as they get older. Toddlers need so much stuff! But you'll still need lots and lots of snacks. Haha!

  4. Sounds like it was a fun time overall!! How long is the car ride? I find the same thing with my children - they do really well for a little bit and then get super overtired and crash and burn. They are definitely getting better as they get older though - so I hope the same happens for you!! Great photos! The zoo looks incredible!

  5. You did it! And have some good memories to boot.

  6. 'Bandersnatch' might be the coolest dog name I've ever heard... tell me it's Lewis Carroll inspired...
    I'm so glad you guys had a fun vacation!! Hiccups are to be expected, but I bet they still looked so stylish in those cute animal outfits during the meltdowns!! A summertime afternoon in a fountain sounds amazingly fun!!

  7. I think the drive home is always longer than the way there! But that's awesome your littles were such champs! We're going to be braving the drive back to family for a bit soon, and I'm dreading it. Also, can I just note how adorable Swede's little dress is?!

  8. What a fun trip-- Abel looks so happy and content in his car seat with his toys! I'm sure it's so fun to have friends who have kids that are around the same age as your own.

  9. Traveling with kiddos does sound hard, but it sounds like you guys did well and rolled with the punches all things considered. I have heard as well that it gets easier the older they get. :) They look so happy in these photos, and I am glad that you guys had fun! Bandersnatch is the coolest name for a dog! XO - Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

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