Colorado Road Trip

I went on a short road trip to Colorado for my aunt’s wedding. In our car was my grandpa, mom, Bret, Amelia, and I. It was Amelia’s first road trip! Below is an overview of what we did and how the trip went!

Day 1: Vista, CA to Flagstaff, AZ

A little background: my mom has one brother, my Uncle Tom. He passed away from cancer in 2011 after his 9 month battle. He, my Auntie Carolyn, and cousins Clark and Becky lived in Pagosa Springs, CO and we used to visit them there, especially when it snowed!

In July, my mom told me we’d be attending a wedding in September; my Auntie Carolyn was getting married again! We all knew right away that we wanted to go and my mom hoped our whole side of the family could go too. Well, after much deliberation and requests for time off, my whole family got to go. And by whole family I mean: my grandpa, my mom, my sister, brother in law, niece, brother, sister in law, Bret, Amelia, and I. This was our first family vacation where the whole family could go since I was six and we went to Walt Disney World. Since my siblings, their spouses, and my niece are all my favorite people, I was very excited for this trip. And, to make it better, my mom rented a house in Pagosa so we could all stay together! My sister and her family drove the whole thing in one day and my brother and sister in law flew in on Friday night.

Our car took two days to drive to Pagosa, which was definitely nice since we had a newborn in our car. We rented a Ford Expedetition since we had 5 people and lots of luggage.

The first day wasn’t too eventful until we reached Williams, AZ, which is a Route 66 town outside Flagstaff. My mom’s friend from high school lives there and he took us to a cute Route 66 themed diner for dinner.

Route 66

The only rough part was Amelia staying awake and crying for a majority of the night.

Day 2: Flagstaff, AZ to Pagosa Springs, CO

Our drive to Pagosa was speedy and I was happy to finally be out of the car for a couple days. On our way to Pagosa, we stopped in Durango to visit Uncle Tom’s resting place. The cemetery in Durango is on a hill that overlooks the town, it’s a gorgeous view. A year after my Uncle passed away, his remains were buried there. Last year when my Grandma passed away, my mom and grandpa brought half her ashes to Durango and buried her with Tom. I knew visiting his grave was going to emotional for us. I captured this sweet moment of my grandpa and mom standing at the grave.

Uncle Tom

The house we stayed at was on a lake and was the cutest thing I’ve ever seen. Everything was made out of wood and had a country theme to it. There were windows everywhere that looked out over the lake.

That night, my aunt had a dinner for both sides of her and Bob’s families and friends. Amelia was a hit with everyone! Becky and Auntie Carolyn loved holding her and cuddling her. Becky currently lives in Hawaii and I don’t get to see her often, so it was really great for her to meet Amelia and Bret and to spend time with her.

Becky and Amelia

Day 3: Pagosa Springs, CO

This was our only full day in Pagosa and it rained for a majority of the day! My sister, brother in law, Bret, and I drove around the historic downtown area while everyone else stayed at the house.

The wedding and reception took place at the Canyon Crest Lodge. It was up on a hill or mountain and overlooked a valley full of trees and beautiful fall foliage. The wedding was outside but luckily it had stopped raining for the ceremony.

Becky looked gorgeous and Clark looked dapper as they walked down the aisle together. But, if I may speak for everyone there, Auntie Carolyn took our breath away. She wore a stunning embroidered gown; she was glowing! (And of course, I cried as she walked down the aisle. It happens at every wedding I go to, I can’t help it) During the ceremony, she and Bob looked so happy.  There was such a sweet moment when Auntie Carolyn, Clark, Becky, Bob, and his children stood in a circle and Bob prayed for their new family.

The reception was a blast! Layla was super entergetic and danced, basically, the entire time. The toasts were so sweet. Bob’s son’s toast brought me to tears.

Wedding Family

Amelia slept through the ceremony and the reception. She wore an adorable mauve dress that had glitter on it. She ended up with glitter all over her. It was nice to be able to spend the night with my family and see Becky. Clark lives in AZ and visits us in CA often but we don’t get to see Becky anymore since she moved to Hawaii. She’s a month younger than me and is basically like my sister so I miss her a lot when she’s gone.

Grandpas Girls

Day 4: Pagosa Springs, CO to Kingman, AZ

Unfortunately, our time in Colorado had to come to an end. We dropped my grandpa off at the airport in the morning because he was going on a cruise up the Mississippi River and then going to my cousins wedding in Minnesota.

We stopped by the Four Corners and the Grand Canyon. The Grand Canyon was gorgeous. I had only been once before when I was around 11 or 12 years old so I didn’t really remember it and seeing it again was great!

New Mexico

Four Corners

Grand Canyon

Grand Canyon Family

Day 5: Kingman, AZ to Vista, CA

In the morning we had breakfast at Cracker Barrel! This is my mom’s favorite place; she loves their food and their country store. While we waited for our food to arrive, my mom and I shopped. We may or may not have bought a lot of stuff….

As we arrived in Barstow, Amelia had a blow out, haha. Luckily it was right when we pulled in at our stop so we could change her quickly. After our stop, we grabbed a quick Starbucks and headed home!

This day was also the day of the fatal Las Vegas mass shooting. I woke up around 3am to feed Amelia and was looking at my phone when the information slowly started coming out. At that time, there were only around 15 dead and 50 injured. By the time I woke up at 9am, the number of dead and injured had increased drastically. My heart was breaking for those who were at the concert and their families. I had several friends at the concert, who were all ok.

I continually pray the evil in this world will cease and desist as I raise my daughter in this society.
Even though the future seems grim, I continue to have hope.

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