Our vacation happened to coincide with our 8th wedding anniversary. Though, admittedly, we did try to plan it that way:)
It just so happens that Aaron and I spent our honeymoon in Estes Park, CO. So when talk of a CO trip for this summer began, Aaron and I worked to make it happen the week that would include August 11th. And when it became clear that we would overlap the right date, we then pushed for Estes Park, because it is such a meaningful place for us.
One of the reasons that Estes is so meaningful to us is that we are both mountain people, at heart. I have formulated the oh-so-brilliant theory that there are two basic types of people...mountain people and ocean people. And whichever you are, that type of place is where you are most rejuvenated and most easily physically and spiritually fed. You might like both, but there is one that is more "right" for you and your soul. And here is my genius test for determining which you are...close your eyes and focus on the rejuvenating idea of water...give it a minute, and then focus your attention to discern this question: is your refreshing water more like a babbling mountain brook or an ocean wave?
If you hear a brook or stream...you're a mountain person, just like me and just like Aaron. We are completely refreshed by the majesty and quiet power of the mountains, and even one day there is like a balm on both our souls.
So, we chose the mountains for our honeymoon, and have also been able to go out many other times. Most of our experience lies close to the front range in Colorado, because Aaron's grandmother, Bertram, and his aunt and uncle lived in Colorado Springs and we would plan trips that could include time with her, as well as time for hiking/camping.
So, we have actually been in CO for the majority of our anniversaries, and have specifically been in Estes Park for our honeymoon, 3rd anniversary, 5th anniversary, and now 8th anniversary.
And since we have been in Estes so much, we, of course, have a few favorite restaurants that we love to visit. But for a romantic dinner, we always choose Mama Rose's Italian Restaurant.
It is right on the bank of the Big Thompson river, and if you make a reservation and the weather cooperates you can get a table right by the river's edge. It is a magical spot!
And thankfully all of the stars aligned for our special dinner out. We made a late reservation so that Granny and Grandpa could just put the kids to bed back at the condo without us and then we could have a longer night out. The restaurant saved a perfect table for us right by the river, and the weather was perfect. And the menu at the restaurant had been recently updated, so that we had one of the best meals either of us had ever eaten!!! It still makes my mouth water to just think of it!!
After our amazing dinner, we walked around downtown Estes, just window shopping and enjoying the perfect night, and then before bed, drove up to the entrance of Rocky Mountain National Park and spent a few minutes stargazing. We each saw several shooting stars, which is easy to do in a crystal clear mountain night sky.
It was a wonderful way to spend our 8th anniversary.
The first pic is of us at the restaurant. You can't tell in the pic, but the river was about 10 feet behind us. And the other two pics are from the deck of our rental house.