Colorado Springs 6 Year Anniversary Trip: Santa’s Workshop North Pole


Saturday, August 9th, 2014 ~ Santa’s Workshop: North Pole

{ Other posts from this trip include: Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, Garden of the Gods, & Cave of the Winds! }

Now for Santa’s Workshop!

We had a blast at Santa’s Workshop North Pole! It is a little amusement park/shops/attraction at the base of Pike’s Peak in Cascade. So…it is literally on the side of the mountain!

[ FYI- Print a coupon off their website before going to save a few bucks. Don’t plan on showing your phone because you probably wouldn’t have service. So glad we printed ours! ]

So we went in and were one of the first in the park! We had gotten there early. Our plan was to go to the theme park before Ryder’s nap at 1 pm. I think it opened at 10 am.

OH…but wait. When we were eating our bomb free breakfast at the hotel, we actually were watching Zach live in PRAGUE compete in the National Yo-Yo Contest! And…he placed 5th in THE WORLD! So yeah, we watched him – on Kevin’s laptop – while eating our food. Everyone was listening to the yo-yo music and stuff from our computer haha. But he did really well and it was perfect timing for us to see him considering him and my family was in Prague and we were in Colorado on a super busy trip!

Anyways, back to the North Pole! So Santa was walking around and we got a picture of Ryder & him ha. Ryder usually cries when he is close to Santa but this time he held his hand and did great! So we are making progress with that! One of the first rides we went on was the train, of course! Ryder was in heaven! (We actually rode on it twice.) We rode all sorts of rides. Ryder chose what ones he wanted to ride on. We would ask him and he would say yes or no. He chose some rides I didn’t want to go on so Kevin went on all of those. Anything that spins, twirls, goes up and down, just weirds me out haha. We took tons of videos and pictures of him going on rides. It cracked me up. Some of the rides were fast too! Oh, and the awesome thing was that the park really wasn’t that busy at all! It was supposed to rain – and it did start to drizzle when we were heading out – so we think that is why it wasn’t too crowded. AMAZING! Absolutely NO lines for rides!

Ryder liked pretty much all of the rides except for a rocket ship one that swings back and forth (kind of like the boat ones)…I hate those. Kevin took Ryder on that and Ryder dug his head into Kevin’s leg and said “no” the whole time. So SAD! Then Ryder chose to go on a big roller coaster ride. The guy who operates the ride said that he would let them go around it once and if Ryder liked it, keep going, or if he didn’t, let him out. When he asked Ryder if he liked it, Ryder said ‘NO’, and they got out haha. So funny!

Anyone else hate ferris wheels? Somehow Kevin talked me into going on it. BUT HEY – I guess I am glad I did because…

It is the HIGHEST ferris wheel in the world! (elevation-wise)

So the views…should have been spectacular if I had my eyes open. I don’t like ferris wheels that much and I definitely don’t like the fast ones and this one was fast. I even asked the guy who operates it if it was fast and he said no haha. SO lame. I was trying to just endure the ride and breathe through it and Kevin was taking pictures and rocking the little thing we sat in. Not cool!

Oh, and they do have the North Pole in the middle of the park (photo above)! It is a frozen piece of ice! Everyone was touching it.

Then it started drizzling and we called it good and grabbed lunch on the way back to our hotel for Ryder’s nap!

What a FUN morning! We so loved it! It was such a scenic cute place! Go if you have the chance!

Next Up: Colorado Springs 6 Year Anniversary Trip: Pike’s Peak!


Colorado Springs 6 Year Anniversary Trip: Cheyenne Mountain Zoo


More of our Anniversary trip in Colorado Springs! Friday, August 8th, 2014 - After nap time, post Cave of the Winds (HERE) & Garden of the Gods (HERE)…we headed off to the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo! The Cheyenne Mountain Zoo is probably the most beautiful zoo I’ve ever been to! I was so amazed! It is on Cheyenne Mountain in Colorado Springs by the Broadmoor hotel. It is literally on the side of the mountain! So you would look at a few animals and then either hike alongside the mountain to the next “level” of animals or take an elevator up. It was so cool! It would have sucked to have a really heavy stroller ;) One thing I knew about, before going to the zoo was that it is the only zoo where you can feed giraffes! So we were definitely going to do that! Oh, and just a tip: they usually have coupons going for the admission ticket…we saved a couple dollars off of each of us…Ryder was free! Just look at their website. So, we first get in, feed giraffes…which was SO fun. By the way, they have REALLY LONG TONGUES! They were so hilarious. Ryder was creeped out by feeding them. It was just great. Then we found some elephants…my favorite animal! Ryder is really smart at knowing and doing the elephant noise ha! So cute. He was afraid of the bird area where they were flying all around us and pooping all over. I was surprised because he is obsessed with Rio and calls birds, Rio! We just walked around, took pictures, had fun; it was perfection! OH, and we came from like 4-7 pm-ish or whenever they closed which was the prime time to come! No one was here! There was a slight chance of rain – well this whole weekend there was but it worked out perfectly for us – so maybe that is why it wasn’t as crowded. But it was amazing to basically have the zoo to your entire self! Ah, we so loved this. I wish we had an amazing zoo in Fort Collins! They are so fun!

We headed out after the zoo closed and then went downtown to Old Colorado City for dinner. We ate at an overpriced Greek restaurant…probably wouldn’t recommend it. We didn’t realize the pricing until we were seated and it was a bummer haha. I mean, it was good/alright food, but just overpriced which stunk. Then we went back to our hotel to call it a night!

This day was AMAZING and a great start to our trip!

Next Up: Colorado Springs 6 Year Anniversary Trip: Santa’s Workshop at the Nole Pole!

Colorado Springs 6 Year Anniversary Trip: Garden of the Gods


This is the second post for our Anniversary trip! Friday, August 8th, 2014… we first went on a Cave of the Winds Tour (more on that HERE) and hit up Subway on our way out  for lunch at this GORGEOUS location – Garden of the Gods! We drove around the park a few times and realized we had come at a bad time. There are only a few parking lots and they were all full unfortunately. I wanted to eat lunch down by the big rocks but we were too late! It was so busy and everyone was desperate to find a spot like us ;) We found a parking spot at the entrance to the park and so that is where we had our picnic lunch (and where our pictures are mainly from). The weather was cool and we had an amazing view… Everything was perfect except for a few storm clouds rolling in. I was just hoping the storm would wait for us to eat our lunch and head back to the hotel. We basically finished and it started sprinkling. I cannot get over the views here. I want to go back and spend more time walking around the park. We could have stayed here for hours or days but we decided to keep to Ryder’s nap schedule to have the most pleasant trip for all ;) Plus, I had pneumonia and needed to sit down and relax for a bit haha. So we left and Ryder took a nap and we prepared for our next big excursion!

Next Up: Colorado Springs 6 Year Anniversary Trip: Cheyenne Mountain Zoo!


Colorado Springs 6 Year Anniversary Trip: Cave of the Winds


We spent our 6 YEAR WEDDING ANNIVERSARY down in Colorado Springs! We wanted to go somewhere in Colorado just because of the closeness factor and we have been wanting to really explore our great state! I had been asking around things/options of what to do and got TONS of ideas and kind of planned an itinerary that we went off :) SO… First, let me start off with THIS post because it talks about me getting pneumonia and getting medicine right when we were supposed to head off to our trip! So yeah, I had pneumonia which was awesome. That is why I am wearing the face mask with Ryder in the 1st picture haha. The doctors told me I should wear one haha. I only wore it for photos ;) And the best, it was Mickey Mouse!

So, we left on Thursday, August 7th. We dropped off Katinka super late at the dog kennel (later than we were allowed) but I had been updating them due to my ‘health emergency’ and they were totally ok with it. So glad they were understanding! Then we drove to Colorado Springs (just a little over 2 hour drive) and we had packed a dinner so we ate it in the car ride. The original plan was to eat our packed dinner at Garden of the Gods but we had to adjust due to my health problems. We checked in, unpacked, and got all good for our weekend trip!

On Friday, August 8th, OUR ACTUAL ANNIVERSARY, we started off the morning right with a good ol’ free ‘Continental Breakfast’ at the hotel. Ryder enjoyed the yogurt and muffins :) Oh, and FYI – if you noticed the picture above with Ryder & my razor…yes…Ryder was trying to shave his legs haha. HEY! At least you know I shave my legs! Moving on from that little tidbit… I chose this morning for the Cave of the Winds tour because if you buy tickets online in advance for morning tour times, they are cheaper! I got that advice from my friend Emily McDonald. So we did that. We got there and Ryder was in heaven playing with a water feature that is supposed to teach them how to mine for gold ;) He loved it. We were a little worried how Ryder would do in the cave tour because it is a walking tour. It is their most kid friendly tour and they say it is good for people of all ages; also, it is their shortest – 45 minutes. So we thought, Ryder could walk it and if he got tired, he could be carried by the Ergo on Kevin. Thankfully, I have a strong husband who is willing to carry a baby! They actually say if you have lung issues that you shouldn’t go on this tour because the air isn’t as good or something haha but I was a rebel! I managed okay! But it was AWESOME! If you know me, you may or may now know, I love CAVES! They are so fascinating to me. I am not a fan of bats or any creepy creatures but the actual caves are just so fun to explore. The formations are amazing – stalactites, stalagmites, cave ‘bacon’, etc.! We had a great time climbing up steep staircases, ducking under narrow and low ravines, etc. Ryder liked touching the cave even though he wasn’t supposed to, heh. Kevin actually wore him the whole time since when we went into the cave he got scared. Oh, and the cave was cold, so we wore jackets…except Kevin forgot to pack one ha. All in all, it was a great experience and if I could, I would definitely jump at the chance to visit Cave of the Winds again OR…any other cave you know of ;) Any other Colorado cave tours?!?! Let me know!

Dreams of Mountains, As in Their Sleep, They Brood on Things Eternally ;)

Next Up: Colorado Springs 6 Year Anniversary Trip: Garden of the Gods!