Let me start this post by saying that I LOVE MY KIDS, more than anything. I love spending time with them, snuggling, playing, being silly… all of it. But, being a stay at home mom is a 24/7 job, there’s no going home at 5, long lunch breaks, personal days or sick days. It is just one long work day after another! Even though I love it, it is really good for my soul and sanity to get a break from the kids every once in a while.
This past weekend I got the best kind of break! An adult weekend, skiing in Colorado, with a wonderful group of friends. There was enough laughter to fill a lifetime and it filled my gratitude bucket to the top.
I know I have said it before, but I’ll say it again- my friendships mean everything to me. It is definitely part of my life that I feel extremely grateful for every day. I rely on my friends for support, love, and laughter. Those are the things nearest and dearest to me.
There were 8 people on our trip to Colorado and if you add up all our years of friendship it would exceed a lifetime. That makes for really great company and a really good time!
In a few years from now the guys on this trip will be celebrating 40 years of friendship. Amazing!! They all met when they were 5 years old in kindergarten and have remained great friends ever since. They all went to the same high school and were in the same fraternity in college. There has been a lot of memories and history shared in this group.
My friend Casey and I have known each other for a little over 20 years. We were randomly placed in neighboring dorm rooms at KU and formed an instant friendship. We haven’t looked back since. At this point we are more like sisters than friends. We also married best friends from that group of guys that have been friends for 40 years. It’s like something from my 10 year old self’s dreams… best friends marrying best friends.♥
So you can just imagine the amount of teasing, fun, and inside jokes being thrown around when we all get together. Fun for days! I think my cheeks still hurt from all the laughter.
I am so grateful for this great group of friends and the chance to spend a weekend together (an adult only weekend).
A Game of Pictionary
What could be better than a loud, hilarious, and competitive game of pictionary after 45 bottles of wine!? Nothing. It was the best.
When you get a group of friends together that have known each other for this long it is almost like you can read each other’s minds. Which makes for a very funny game of pictionary. I wish I had pictures of some of these drawings!
Here are some of the good ones that were unbelievably guessed within seconds:
Surfing.. a line across the page with a curly Q at the end… nothing else on the page. The first guess- surfing!
North Star… a star and an arrow.
Speed Limit…. a road and a car sketched out… nothing else.
And then there are some that you would not believe your teammates guessed because the drawings did not necessarily indicate the word on any level.
Picture this drawing: two people sitting at a table…hmmmmm… then a tie is drawn on one of the people… still can’t get it… a vampire is sketched off to the side… I say “vampire”… then a few seconds later Casey says “interview with a vampire”… the word is interview!!! We all burst into excitement! How the hell did we get “interview” from two people sitting at a table and a vampire on the side. HAHAHAHA
And then there were a whole lot of inappropriate ones that won’t make it on this page : ) Those were the really funny ones!!
I love skiing. It isn’t something that I get a chance to do that often, living in the pancake state of Kansas.
Not only do I love the sport of it, it has a special place in my heart. In my 20’s John surprised me with a ski trip to Tahoe. He asked me to marry him on that trip♥ .
This skiing trip was no acception. It was full of great skiing with friends, $16 hamburgers, $15 apres ski drinks, wipeouts, too many laughs, and shredding the gnar gnar.
We ended the first day of skiing hanging out over drinks and s’mores at the bottom of the mountain. The drinks may have been $15, but the s’mores were free! They brought out a buffet of s’more fixings to toast over the open fire pits. I love food. What a great ending to the day!
The second day of skiing was my favorite. I upgraded my skis to a decent pair that cut through the snow like butter. We found some pretty empty runs on the west side of the mountain that were just our speed, not-so-steep blues. It was some of the best skiing I have ever done.
After about 4 hours we were exhausted and landed in The C-Bar for cocktails and oysters (no oysters for me!). There I had one of the best “Mules”! It was a traditional vodka mule with peach puree added. If you ever ski Beaver Creek, stop in The C-Bar and get the Over the Mountain Mule. It was unbeatable.
A Spa Day
After a day of skiing there is nothing better than a day at the spa. Skiing can be pretty rough on a 40 year old body. Especially when you are skiing on super crappy skis the first day! (Life lesson: do not try to save money on your ski rental… you get what you pay for!!!).
We decided we would ski on Friday, then spa on Saturday, and ski again on Sunday. That was the perfect combo! In my 20’s I could ski 2 days in a row, no problem, but as a 40 year old I need a day in between!
We found the most wonderful spa in Beaver Creek called Spa Struck. It was just the kind of spa I like. One that smells like essential oils, has big fuzzy robes, and additional amenities- steam, sauna, relaxation room, hot tubs, outdoor fire pits, and pools.
Not a lot of people know this but I was a massage therapist for about 5 years in my early 20’s. So I can be critical of a massage. This time I had the BEST massage! My masseuse had the strongest hands that gave the perfect amount of firm pressure. He had the softest hand ever, they were like two sticks of butter. Nothing like my unbelievably crusty winter hands!
I love a massage where you can completely relax and drift in and out of a dream state. It was heaven.
After our massages we all made our way to an enormous outdoor hot tub that had a picturesque view of the mountains and a few ski runs. The air was a cool 30° which made steam swirl off the hot water. Every once in a while the snow from the roof would catch the wind and shower us with a dusting. It would hit your skin like little pin pricks of cold. But, if you lowered yourself into the steaming water the heat would warm the sting. It was heavenly. That is how you adult vacation, pure relaxation!
I was so grateful for my heavenly massage and a day at the spa. It was just what this apres-ski-battered-body needed!
One thing that I do not get a lot of at home, that I miss from my 20’s, is snuggling in bed with nothing to do. Isn’t that the best feeling. Just total relaxation and no anxiety that you should be doing something else like laundry, dishes, or cleaning. Even when I am on vacation I struggle to relax in bed because I have FOMO (fear of missing out). I want to be where the action is All. The. Time. It can be exhausting.
On this trip I let myself have time to just lay in bed. Without worry that I was missing something or that I should be doing something else. It was so nice.
After the first day of skiing I was spent! I came straight home, got out of my ski gear and slipped into bed to have a little nap. I was cold after skiing, the kind of cold that seeps into your bones.
Just before falling asleep I remembered there was a heating blanket on the bed. I quickly popped that sucker on level 10. As I drifted in and out of sleep I snuggled more and more into the warm blankets. I have never been so cozy.
A heating blanket is the best thing going in the winter! I had no idea. I need one for home now.
People… why hasn’t anyone told me about the Moscow Mule!!!!! I mean, I have seen people drink them without so much as a “mmmmmm” or “this is really good”. Where is the expression of deliciousness!?
My life is now changed! While on this wonderful trip to Colorado I had 3 different types of “Mules”. A grapefruit infused mule, a peach infused mule and a regular mule. And I “mmmmm’ed”, “yummmmmm’ed”, and “sluuuuuurp’ed” my way thru each one. Exclaiming after every other drink “this is soooooo good”! I am sure everyone sitting around me was thinking… yes, we know it’s good, you don’t have to tell us AGAIN! But, people, they were SO good! The liquor isn’t overwhelming, they are unbelievably cold and refreshing from the copper mug, and the bite from the ginger beer is just right. it is now my go-to perfect cocktail. I just need a set of copper mugs and a 6 pack of ginger beer for home.
I super duper love buffalo chicken wings. Which is extra funny to my friend Casey since I was a vegetarian for about 15 years.
I am definitely a traditionalist when it comes to my wings, none of this bbq, chili lime, or wasabi for me. I like a crispy wing (not drummie), a good amount of heat, the perfect meat to sauce ratio, a big slap of vinegar, and lots of chunky, tangy blue cheese.
What I usually find is that wings are not fried long enough and the skin is still chewy, there is way too much sauce, not enough vinegar zing, and the blue cheese is a disappointing version of ranch.
I finally found the holy grail of chicken wings that I will be dreaming about for weeks/years to come. My mouth is watering just a little thinking about them and it’s only 9am! There is a little restaurant in Edwards, Colorado called E Town. It is a casual restaurant tucked back in a cute little shopping area.
I had their wing sauce cheek to cheek and up to my wrists. No shame!
The wings seem to be double fried because they are super crispy, and then they are tossed in the ideal amount of sauce. The wing sauce is super vinegary and perfectly spicy. To top it all off they serve their wings with the best CHUNKY blue cheese. It doesn’t get better than that!
If you are ever in the Vail/Beaver Creek area I would highly recommend popping into E Town for some of their very perfect hot wings….and stick around for dinner because their whole menu is delicious!