When we got the news a year in advance that Cat would be getting married, we began planning immediately! We were so happy for her and Josh and the thought of the whole family getting to travel to Denver, Colorado made it that much sweeter! The western US holds a lot of special memories for our family.
Carter and I spent our honeymoon 34 years ago out west in a small camper traveling through the Grand Canyon, Rocky Mountain National Park, The Great Sand Dunes, Bryce Canyon, The Arches and many other hot spots!
Colorado and “out west” is a family favorite. We, as a family and as individuals, have made several treks westward. Our first big vacation as a family of 6, 18 years ago, was a 2-week, pop-up camper towing adventure covering Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and all the states between there and Alabama. Carter and I and the 4 kids ranging in age 2 to 13! We made some incredible memories and captured them on 25 rolls of 35mm Kodak 400 Ultramax film!
Since that trip, Katie has made that trip (tent camping) and 5 years ago, Carter and I took our son and daughter, Mitchell and Elizabeth, back on the same route as the original family trip. You see, Mitchell and Elizabeth were only 2 and 4 at the time of our first family adventure so we wanted to take them again to see through new, more mature eyes. Every year we all yearn to return! Although this trip wouldn’t involve a camper and would be considerably shorter than our previous journeys, we were so excited!
For all but Katie (who is basically a world traveler, literally), this would be the first time travelling out west by flight! In fact, it was Mitchell’s first flight ever AND neither Carter nor I have flown in nearly 30 years!! We believe in road trips! Our oldest daughter, Emily, is terrified of flying, but she knew it would be worth it and suffered through. This was only the 2nd flight for Elizabeth. So, it truly was a big adventure for all!
When we arrived in Denver the weather was as hot as it was in Alabama! It was 90 degrees and the sun was blazing! Taylor, Elizabeth’s boyfriend who had come along with us, was a little disappointed in the sites of Denver. He’d never been “out west” and was expecting to land directly amid the snowcapped mountains lol, not the city that was very similar to any other large city. But then shortly after settling in the hotel, the magic began to happen.
Our first event was an MLB game between the Rockies and the Diamondbacks at Coors Field! It was hot, so hot, but so much fun. Watching a baseball game with thousands of enthusiastic fans and seeing the silhouette of the Rocky Mountains on the horizon made for a perfect night.
Saturday was the fairytale wedding of Cat and Josh (see the blog for the deets) amongst the foothills of the Rockies and the gorgeous Colorado sunset at the historical Boettcher Mansion! Katie and I had the privilege of shooting along with local Denver photographer, Rachel Rumple Photography. Vacationing in Denver AND getting to shoot a wedding in Colorado!! Life is good! And Taylor was finally getting a little taste of the mountains.
Then Sunday arrived and we all piled into the 15-passenger van to head up to the Rocky Mountains to stay in a quaint cabin on the lake in Great Lake, Colorado! Oh, the drive through the mountains, Estes Park, the wildlife, the lake, the cabin, the comradery, the mild temperatures (high’s in the low 60’s in mid June!), the smores over the fire pit…EVERYTHING! Taylor wasn’t the only one in awe! We were truly in Heaven!
The 5 days that we were there wasn’t nearly long enough! So, I guess we’ll have to go back….SOON!