Monday, April 21, 2008

Day Trip

Dave thought it would be fun to go up to Loveland for lunch. We actually went to Loveland to look at this Sports Bar/Grill for sale - we went to check it out and eat lunch there. It's kind of like Dave's version of window shopping. He's ready to sell the FedEx route we bought, the one that brought us to Colorado. I'm in a bit of a huff because I thought when we moved it was to be our last move until the kids graduated high school. Both D and I were moved around quite a bit as kids and we don't want that for our boys. We're still talking that over.

I know he wouldn't actually buy a restaurant/bar because as much as it seems like a decent idea/venture, we both know that no matter what the owner says, the owner most likely lives at the business. We'd like to find something where we can see D every now and then. He's never had a 40 hour/week job. It's always 12 or more hours a day and days that start ass-early in the morning. Which is really odd, since D's no more a morning person then I am!

OK, so our trip. Loveland is, well, lovely! It's such a beautiful town and not very big, I want to say 30K people? Maybe? And it has a few gorgeous lakes. It also has one of the main Interweave Press offices (you know, Interweave Knits magazine?). We took the kids with us and had lunch at the Bar/Grill. It's a nice enough place, not very big, though. The service stank but I just think that was our waitress, not policy or anything. The food was good but nothing special. Except the wings. We had an order of chicken wings and they were the most tender,fallin' off the bone wings I've ever had! With a really unique BBQ sauce that made me want the recipe.

The bonus of making my Stitch Savers is that I have an excuse to find the yarn shop in every town we go to! I went to the two shops in Vegas last time we vacationed there and on this trip to Loveland I went to Woolen Treasures . The shop was so well stocked, warm and friendly. D and the boys stayed in the van while I went in to ply my wares. Sneaky yarn purchases ensued. I scored two skeins of Shibui Knits sock yarn (one in chocolate brown and one in robin's egg blue) to make the Transitions gloves and since it was still around my birthday, I got 'em at 15% off! Splee!

What a lovely little shop! Well, not that little, really. It's in a home made over in to a Yarn Shop. The owner was there and she ordered some of my stuff, so if you're in Loveland, you can get Stitch Savers there instead of paying shipping to my Etsy store.

Dave had heard there was a Big Red Store up in Estes Park (that's a store that specializes in Nebraska Husker gear) so we decided to go on up and check it out. Wow! For those who've been up there for the Wool Festival or actually live there, you are so lucky! It's such a gorgeous drive and another beautiful Colorado mountain town. The drive was so picturesque that I put my knitting down for the rest of the drive and just enjoyed the scenery. Estes Park is SO touristy but still retains a quiet, inviting feel.

Oh, side not. Sad note. On the way between the two towns, we were stalled on the freeway because of a wreck. It was the strangest thing - it must've just happened. There were no less then eight cars stopped (6 on our side of the freeway and more on the other side). We didn't see any wreckage, though. There was an ambulance in the right-hand lane next to us and it didn't have its lights on or anything. When we got closer we saw a man on the ground, fairly surrounded by people and one other man was preforming CPR on him. The ambulance pulled over to the on-ramp across from the median where the crowd was (I think some of the people standing around actually flagged it down, so it stopped).

We read in the newspaper on Sunday that the man didn't make it. He lost control of his motorcycle which propelled him into the cable barrier between the two sides of the freeway and he had no helmet. The newspaper, strangely, made a point of writing about the fact that the man's motorcycle was homemade and he'd made it back in 1999. I don't know why that was relevant - I have some friends who're into bikes and they "handmake" their rides from what they call "basket cases", motorcycles that are nothing but parts and pieces sold in "baskets". Anyway, D and I would talk about the man from time to time throughout the whole day - it really seemed to effect us, seeing that guy doing CPR and all those people standing there, helpless to do anything but watch. According to the paper, the man was pronounced dead at the scene. So sad.

On to Estes...
We went to one Husker store and it was tiny! We looked around and then left. Dave took the boys down to the river (which runs through the whole town) and I asked if there was anything in the store he liked. He said the sweatshirt he was looking at but $50 was too much for it. I told him I was going to go back in there and see if I could look in the phone book to see if there was another yarn store in Estes - you know, to see if they wanted some Stitch Savers! I went back in and btw the phone book and the man behind the counter, realized that the yarn store was across the street in another shopping center! I told D I was going over there. I hoofed up a 90 degree hill (OK, it just felt like it) and in the middle of this shopping center was the place I was looking for. The Stitchin' Den - another great shop! Not as big as the one in Loveland but a great selection nonetheless! I didn't buy anything at this one because I knew I was going to try to sneak back and get that sweatshirt for D without his noticing.

I did it, too! (Do not underestimate the sneakiness of the 5elementknitr!) I got it for him for an anniversary present (8 years on the 22nd!). When I went back into the store, this women walked in about a step ahead of me. She was my age or older (I'm 38) and she had stuffed her not small body into this white micro mini and tank top. I mean, that skirt was so short, I could practically see all her business when she put a foot on the step going into the store. I didn't realize the look of horror I had on my face until I saw the guy behind me looking at me - you know, the guy that was her companion. Ugh - I really need to work on my Poker face!

We spent the rest of the day wandering the town. We bought the boys ice creams (Estes has no less then 7 ice cream shops in one block. SEVEN! And another Husker store, too! We took them in to the fossil store where they got some cool rocks. I bought a baseball cap (been looking for one for awhile). Then we took them up to the area by the yarn shop. They have a small pond where you can feed some trout. These puppies were enormous! I guess it's all that fish food people throw to them.

Then we got some gas and while we were pumping the gas, we saw 2 big female Elk crossing the street! It was so cool! The kids loved it! (sorry for all the !!! but we were pretty stoked about it) After that, we ate at Poppy's restaurant. Again with the slooooooowwww service! We sat with our menus and our hungry little guys for almost 15 minutes before they even took our drink order! At least the food was good - love sweet potato fries, find them so rarely.

It reminded me of the times with D before kids. We used to take these impromptu day trips all the time. I love driving around with no real plan or agenda like that. Especially since D never wants to me drive (fine by me - I hate freeway driving) and extra-especially since I learned to knit!

The kids had a great time, we had a great time and we found new places to hang out and spend time together instead of in front of the TV/video games/poker tournaments where technically we're in the house together but I wouldn't even pretend to call it "family time".

We left at 10 am and didn't get home until 10p. D was in the fossil store with the boys (I was outside watching their ice creams melt) when someone passed and commented to their friend, "Ohmigod, it's 5p already!" Wow - where'd the day go?? Who cares - such a great day!

Can't wait to go back, Ruth!


Anonymous said...

Re: the restaurant business. The working hours of restaurant owners tend to run 10am to 10pm or later, plus weekends. The exception would be places that specialize in just breakfast and lunch and close at, say, 2 pm. There are a gazillion of those kinds of places on the skyway system in Minneapolis, catering to downtown workers, but there are small-town cafe kinds of places that do that, too. Good luck to Dave! (We love to do those kind of impromptu day-trip things, too -- great times!)

Nell said...

What a great trip! And don't worry about!!!! I do that all the time.

You are sneaky. I love it.

And congrats on the new wholesaler. that's so great.

Me7of11 said...

Those are the best days. Makes me want to grab my family and jump in the car right now!

Sam said...

Too funny -- I was up at Woolen Treasures only yesterday. Isn't it just an adorable store!

Your day sounds absolutely fabulous. We are lucky to live in such a beautiful part of the world!

WandaWoman said...

I hope you don't move, that would be sad for me! Just as I am getting to know you better!

I do hope that your hubby finds something with more regular hours though. It sounds like a great day, hanging out and going on a day trip. I used to love to do that. It reminds me that me and M should do that soon too.

Corwink said...

I LOVE Estes. I have said to my hubby several times that I want to move there. LOVE IT!