Colorado Springs: Part One

On the road again….or maybe I should say, flying the friendly skies again! I am becoming quite the jet setter these days, which is ironic since I really don’t like getting on airplanes at all. Unless I’ve taken my meds and then I’m totally cool with it; give me a window seat and lets get this party started. This trip was unique because my grandmother was traveling with me; so I had some company to keep my amused on the plane rides. My grandma and I have a really good relationship and we are able to have really good conversations, so I was glad to have her for a traveling companion. We started our journey on Thursday afternoon at 3 when we set out from my office for Jackson and our flight to Dallas…and then on to Colorado Springs.

*This post is going to have to be split up into 2-3 posts because I realized last night that I took a ton of pictures and I can’t/don’t want to make a post that is a million miles long. So, enjoy part one and part two will come along very soon!*

The sun set while we were waiting to board our plane…the perfect end to a day; knowing you’re headed to see family.

Traveling buddies! My Nanny is a real trooper – she travels like an old pro.
Dallas from the sky…

We had really calm flights, for which I was immensely thankful. Even though I take calm pills, I still like everything to go fairly smooth because too much “chop” tends to set me on edge. I was really hoping that in the Dallas airport I would see some evidence of the show “Dallas”…like maybe a sign for the show or even a sign advertising that you could visit South Fork. A co-worker informed me that if I happened to stumble upon certain cast members in the airport I couldn’t just jump them. I made no promises as to that, but it didn’t really matter because all I saw in the Dallas airport was the Skylink train, a standard issue Hudson News store where I bought a granola bar and lots of older people eating McDonald’s fruit and yogurt parfaits. Not even a single sign of anything “Dallas” related in Dallas. And yes, I know…I have a slight obsession. It is totally okay.

Ah – the hotel. I was glad to see this site at 11:30 on Thursday night. 11:30 Colorado time, so 12:30 to my system.
My Valentine gift from my Momma & Daddy – chocolate & gift card “bouquet”. She is crafty y’all, I’m always impressed!

I slept like a log on Thursday night but once it was about 7:30, which felt like 8:30 to me…I was ready to get out and about. Colorado Springs is so gorgeous and even though it was chilly, I was ready to get out in the midst of it all, to see the mountains, breath that clean, cold air and see the Academy again. It doesn’t matter how many times I go to the Academy, I am always blown away by how beautiful the setting is and the level of dedication that each of the kids there possess. Because they are kids and they have knowingly signed up for a college experience that is a vastly more challenging and difficult 4 years than what most of us will ever experience; if we are ever challenged that much at all in life…but I know that it is also vastly more rewarding in the end as well. I’m always just overwhelmed with pride at knowing that my little sister not only wanted to do this, but has done so immensely well at it. I don’t call her Beast for just any old reason!

Back at the Academy again…yahoo!
I think the Air Force Academy Chapel may be one of my favorite places on Earth. Absolutely breathtaking every time I see it. Which is probably why I never get tired of taking pictures of it.
Just glorious. Have you ever seen such an impressive pipe organ, because I haven’t….
The Catholic Chapel at the Academy – the mosaic work is amazing.
I had to check out the Buddhist temple – it was too intriguing not to.

Side note on the whole Buddhist temple thing – the Academy has to cater to all faiths because it cannot be seen showing favoritism to one religion or another. The Buddhist temple has these little poofs that you sit on to meditate; I just had to sit on one. Why you may ask? One of my little sister’s friends used to go to the Buddhist temple on Sundays when he had his chance to attend a worship service. His mother got a little concerned that maybe he was having a crisis of faith…but Lindsey set his Mom straight real quick; he was going to the Buddhist temple because while they meditated, he could sneak in a short power nap! Ha-ha! I had to test the poofs out for myself and while I’m a hardcore lover of Jesus, I have to say…maybe we should replace pews with poofs. Although maybe they aren’t really conducive to paying attention because they’re so comfy.

I’m such a nerd – when we were in the visitor’s center, I realized that I could see my reflection in the miniature of the chapel. Well, I just had to take a picture of that. Ha-ha!
The Academy from the overlook – beautiful as always!

Once Lindsey was done for the day, we sprinted up to her room (seriously, they only gave us 30 minutes) to gather her things and headed out for a weekend away from the Academy. We had to make a short stop at the Association of Graduates building and check out the new gift shop – which worked out great for Lindsey and I because we got some awesome headbands. I’m already planning my outfit for the football game at Parent’s Weekend and it revolves around my headband. No lie.

Our blinging Air Force headbands – love it! Wore it the rest of the day.
I think we look just a little bit alike – don’t you?
Go Air Force! Now I just have to find a whole outfit to wear solely to go with this headband. I’ve only got 6 months to plan…

After we decided to hang out at the room for a little while, mostly because my Nanny said we had worn her out. You see, my family can go all day and never slow down when we are on vacation…but we realize that isn’t how most people vacation. My family thinks that when you vacation, you need to see as much as you can see in the time you are given; I’ve been conditioned to go, go, go and sitting in a hotel room for more than just a couple hours starts to make me stir crazy. Thankfully, I had Lindsey to chat with, a book to read and every once in a while I would just stare out the window at the mountains. They are absolutely breathtaking and when my Nanny first saw them on Friday morning, she exclaimed “that is beautiful, just like a painting!” You are so right Nanny. A painting by the master painter Himself. After we finished up some of Lindsey’s laundry, we headed out to get some supper at a local restaurant called the Rocky Mountain Brewery (I think that is right…Lindsey will correct me if it isn’t…) where I got a BBQ Bison Burrito with homemade black bean salsa. It was delicious. I’m a really big fan of bison and I really wish it was available here in the South. I could do some good cooking with some bison!

BBQ Bison Burrito and sweet potato fries – delicious. It was agreed that I picked the best meal of the night.

After we finished eating, we tried to coerce Nanny into going to the movies with us to see “Safe Haven” since she has read every Nicholas Sparks book ever written. All she wanted to do was go back to the room, take a bath and go to bed…so we obliged her and then set out for the theatre. I’ve also read every Nicholas Sparks book ever written and I love them all. I’ve seen a lot of criticism of this movie but I have to say, I loved every minute of it. It had been awhile since I’d read this one, so I didn’t remember the little twist at the end – but I loved it. I also loved that Cobie Smulders was in it since she is on one of my favorite shows, “How I Met Your Mother” and I think she’s pretty great in most anything she is in. If you like a nice romantic movie, go see this. I’ve seen where the critics have really panned this one, but as I’ve come to find out…if the critics hate a movie, I usually love it. I think most movie critics are very cynical and it’s nice to hope for love and romance as a possibility in this crazy world.

Yep – I give it two thumbs way up!

Well, I’ll leave this one at an end here. Part Two will be following shortly, maybe even later today. It all just depends on how the rest of my day goes. Until then, enjoy this post! Have a good Tuesday!

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