{Now it's Back to Reality & Ski Trip '14 Recap}

HELLLLLLLLLO friends!

I have been very MIA for the past week and a half, and I apologize for that.  Last week, my sweet husband and I were shoop, shoop, shooping down the mountain in Keystone, CO with some of our friends.  It was a BLAST!  Time for a little recap, shall we?

I hadn't been skiing since the two trips I took in high school with our church youth group and with Young Life, and with my race being so close (we're officially 19 days away y'all! - WHAT!?!), I was pretty nervous about injuring myself.  I was pretty thankful that one of my roommates from college, Allison, and her husband had never been skiing before.  I knew that they would be taking it easy on the mountain, trying to learn to control their skis, and that I could take it easy and not have to keep up with my expert snowboarding husband and his bestie.  Don't get me wrong, I wanted to spend time skiing with Ryan, but for the first day back on the mountain after many, many moons, I wanted to take my time.

My other college roommate, Lo, hadn't been skiing since she was very young, so between the four of us we were ready for some easy skiing.  Her husband had been skiing since he was young so he spent a lot of time snowblading with Ryan and Bush.

Sunday
Our morning started around 4 am when Papa Nabors picked us up to take us to the airport.  No one was particularly chatty, surprise surprise, but there was an excitement that couldn't be stifled, even at 4 am.  Upon arrival, we met our friends Lo and her husband since we weer all on the same flight.  We made it to the airport with just enough time to check our bags, head through security and board the plane.  Ry, Bush, and I were all in the same row and after sitting down we felt a tap on our shoulders and were instructed to pass something down the row.  Bush and Ry thought it was going to be some sort of evangelical packet, but instead it was this super cute individual package of goodies for our row and two rows behind us.  I'm not going to lie, but from that point on I didn't care one single bit if Brooks made any noise.  Well done, Mama of Brooks.  This was genius!


I'm fairly certain we all slept except for maybe Bush.  && yes, Brooks was fantastic, in case you were wondering. :)  We didn't hear a peep from him until we landed and we're guessing his ears were popping because he started mumbling to himself like, "Yeah!  Listen to me.  I sound gooooood."  Precious.

After arriving in Denver and collecting our bags, of which none were missing  - praise the LORD! - we went to grab some breakfast in the food court and waited on our other couple, Chris and Allison, to get there.  Everyone was in a pretty good mood despite the fact it was only 8 in the morning or something.  We were in Colorado, and ski trip had commenced!

We made it!

After C&A arrived, we hopped in our shuttle and headed for Keystone which was about a 2 hour ride away.  Once we arrived in Keystone, we dropped our bags off at condo office since we weren't able to check into our condo early.  We shuttled over to River Run, part of Keystone's Resort Village, grabbed some fantastic pizza, explored the village, bought some souvenirs, and killed lots of time.  Having gotten up so early, we were all pretty ready to crash by 3 pm.  Luckily, the condo folks called us an hour earlier than planned and we were able to drop our bags off there and trek back out to pick up our ski/snowboard gear.






I feel like I just keep typing and typing, but bear with me, it was a long day.  Renting our ski/snowboard gear had to be possibly the worst part of the trip if I had to pick one.  The people working there were pretty rude and bossy.  I mean, I guess they know you have to rent from someone and you've clearly already chosen them, but come on let's have a little customer service!

[Example: Ryan and I completed our paperwork first and gave it to the guy who put it in some box and said someone would be right with us.  As our friends joined us in the boot fitting area and were fitted for their boots and moved on to the next area to collect the rest of their ski gear, Ryan and I waited and waited.  Until a family of 6 walked in after all our friends were done getting their gear and we STILL had not been helped by ANYONE that I grabbed the guy about to help the family and said, "I'm sorry and I don't mean to be rude, but no one has helped us and our paperwork is still over there in that bin."  They gave us a "free boot upgrade" since we had been waiting, but who knows if they were really an upgrade or not.  It's not like we do this too often to know.  An hour after arriving, we grabbed our gear and headed out, but not before Ryan was treated like a toddler by the snowboard guy who was just rude to everyone.  Not cool.  End lament.]

So, if you thought our day was over then you would have guessed wrong.  We had decided that in an effort to save as much money as possible, we would only eat out a couple times while we were there, and get groceries to eat off of the rest of the time.  So, while the boys took our ski gear back to the condo, the ladies hopped on a 45 minute shuttle ride to the grocery store in the nearest town.  Oh, the boys would also like to get credit because they walked 10 minutes to the liquor store from our condo.  Way to go boys.

With under an hour to stop and get back out to the shuttle stop, we raced through the store grabbing breakfast, lunch, and dinner items.  I was insanely impressed with our shopping skills, and we made it to the shuttle stop just in time to see the snow start falling and make it on our ride.



We didn't anticipate how we would carry so many groceries, and several of our bags were a bit too full, so I carried two jars of spaghetti sauce in my jacket and we each carried about 4 or 5 bags.  After getting back to the ski rental stop we had to call an on-call shuttle to take us back to our condo... which would conveniently be available in 20 minutes.

Picture this.  Three girls carrying arms full of groceries, one girl with weird lumps in her jacket that don't look like pregnant bumps, but more than an alien or like they stole something (ahem, thank you spaghetti sauce), standing in the pouring snow - seriously, it was dumping snow - waiting for their shuttle to arrive, freezing.  After about 5 minutes I suggested we break into a bag of Cheetos to tide us over and to my excitement the other girls agreed.  So, add the image above, grocery bags now on the ground, and three girls tearing into a bag of Cheetos.  Hysterical.

We finally made it back to the condo, groceries and all, and made tacos for dinner.  Not too long after that everyone peaced out for bed.  We were tired travelers and were on the mountain the next day, so we needed our sleep.

Monday
Holy cow, we're just getting to Day 2.  Sorry y'all, I'll try to control my word count from here on.  The first day on the mountain most of us spent a lot of time on the bunny hill and Snowmarm, the easy, family trail, green.  I was impressed that I felt comfortable on the skis as quickly as I did, but I still wanted to take it easy so I spent time cruising with my friends.  Best part of the day: Allison and I taking our last run on Snowmarm, with a quiet mountain, and a beautiful view.





After a long day of skiing, we headed to the hot tub to relax and then made spaghetti for dinner.  Boatloads, actually.  I may have grossly overestimated how much pasta and sauce we might have needed.  Oops!

Tuesday
Second day on the mountain.  Legs throbbing.  Shins on fire.  The group, minus Ryan and Bush, because they're waaaay better, and waaaaay faster than the rest of us (except probably Michael, because he's pretty good) went to our favorite green, Snowmarm, and I realized I couldn't feel my feet.  Cue legs hurting worse, and feeling a little bit of panic.  I feel ridiculous saying this, but it was honestly because my boots were too tight.  At the rude ski shop, they told me I wanted them as tight as I could stand it up top because that's where all the support comes from.  Well, for someone with gigantic calves this means you lose circulation in your feet.  I had felt pressure the first day, but I guess coupled with soreness was too much for my little feet. Side note: I didn't realize this was the issue until our 3rd day, and just blamed my soreness on having not been skiing in years.  Chris called it a day early, and Allison and I skied Snowmarm most of the afternoon.  Ryan even went down a run with us!



Baileys & Hot Chocolate.  Yum.

After lunch, it was more skiing, a little skiing with my main squeeze, some hot chocolate with Bailey's sipping for me and Al, and Lo and M's final day of skiing. :(  We dropped our gear off at the rude ski shop since they would charge us every day it was out and we weren't skiing again until Thursday.  More hot tubbing, then out in River Run for dinner.

While our dinner was excellent, our waitress was rude (I promise not all the people we met were rude!) and she kind of ruined our outing.  Oh well.  After dinner, we played some games and relaxed and went to bed.

Ryan & me at dinner.

L&M at dinner

We made a snow squirrel!

Wednesday
This was the last day L&M were with us, poohoohoo, and our first day not skiing.  We all slept in and then headed to River Run for some snow tubing!  It was a blast!  After tubing, we went to the same pizza place from the first day and got more delicious pizza.  L&M needed to catch their shuttle ride back to the airport so they grabbed theirs to go, and the remaining group did a little more shopping around before going to pick up our gear for our last day of skiing again.

Bush snow tubing

C&A snow tubing

C&A snow tubing

Ryan bought me these before we left for the trip.  I got lots of compliments. :)

{Rooms}



He's handsome.


{Besties}

Picked up gear, bought sketchy frozen burger patties from the weird store next door, hot tubbed, made more spaghetti, made Yahtzee a drinking game, and called it a night!  I'll blog about Drunk Yahtzee another time. :)

Thursday
Last official day of skiing.  At this point I am still having trouble feeling my feet and I'm resting every 10 minutes or so.  It's ridiculous.  At the end of my first run with C&A, I leave them to sit at a table while they go up for another run.  After sitting at a picnic table for 10 minutes or so, I realized I could feel my feet when my boots weren't so tight, so I ventured up the mountain on my own with my boots looser.  It was bliss!  While I felt a little less stable on top, I still felt in control.  Since we were nearing lunch meet up anyway, I skied a couple of runs on my own at my pace and even tried a blue.  I was pretty proud of myself for trying a blue on my own, and actually really enjoyed it!

After lunch, we all went up the mountain together and Ryan and Bush took us up to the very top from the Montazuma lift the rest of us hadn't gone on yet.  I skied with Ryan and Bush and they took me down some more blues.  I learned not all blues were created equal, but found some blues I really enjoyed.  I'm so glad I let them talk me into doing blues, and that even before that I had been gutsy enough to go down some on my own.

Everyone was pretty tired from skiing and the previous plan had been to go night skiing, but we were pooped.  I think Ryan would have gone if others had wanted to, but no one seemed overly eager to go.  So we called it a day, turned in our ski gear for the last time and headed back to the condo to enjoy our last bit of time in Colorado.

Friday
Woke up to a huge snowstorm.  Cleaned up the condo and packed and sat around as a group waiting for the shuttle to arrive, periodically breaking icicles off the house and throwing them down like Zeus throwing lightning bots. :)  Shuttle was delayed picking us up because of the weather, and when we finally got in the shuttle it was slow moving to make it back to Denver.  Our shuttle driver was a semi-pro snowboarder named Doug who talked about his snowboarding career and the like.




Finally made it to the airport and C&A hightailed it to check in and the gate.  Their flight left much earlier than ours, but it was good we rode together because the roads in and out of Keystone Resort were shut down shortly after we left.  We had talked about taking a later shuttle to the airport than them since our flight was so much later and we could enjoy time at the village, but the shuttle was already so expensive that killing a few more hours in Keystone didn't really seem worth it for us, and C&A to pay more.

Scarfed down some food, and found a spot near a charger to plop down and wait for our plane... which was delayed.  Of course. :)

Finally made it home to the baby dogs at 1 am with bags in tow.  We were pretty nervous that, having arrived so early, there was a good chance our bags would get lost.  Moose and Goose greeted us with wookie noises and love!

All in all, it was a fantastic trip!  I am so glad we got to go, that I got to ski with my sweet husband and our friends, and that no one got hurt.

----

After being in Keystone for the week, I boarded a plane the following Monday to attend a financial training my boss was putting on in Ohio.  It was nice not to have to go back to the real workplace just yet, but I was definitely ready to be back when I got home Wednesday.  After taking a week off of my training to ski, I was stuck to treadmills in Ohio after not getting a ton of time of the bike the weekend in between.

Last Friday was my first day back in the pool after nearly 2 weeks.  SCARY!  It felt good to be back in the pool, but I was so, so tired and could feel my body getting tight not too long after I got out of the pool.  I got a good workout in on Sunday on the trainer, since it was freezing outside, but after being the rain and cold this past Saturday I think my body is fighting off a cold.

Since I didn't have anything on the training plan yesterday I decided to just rest and get a good night's sleep.  I'm still feeling a bit of draining, headache, and my glands are still swollen, but it's back in the water during lunch and on the bike tonight.  There is no time to waste!  Did I mention I'm 19 days away?!  PANIC!

With that, I'll see you tomorrow!  Hope you guys are having a great week, and thanks for bearing with me during this long recap!

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