Tag Archives: kids

Colorado 2015 Part II: Our Favorite Hotel for a Large Family + Colorado Springs


Start Here: Colorado 2015 Part 1

Warning: Picture Heavy Post


After chatting with friends and checking out our options, we decided to stay in Denver for our short duration in Colorado. It was a central location to our “must-sees”, close to the airport, and we found a brand-new Drury Hotel in the Denver metro area. Drury Hotels are PERFECT for our family. We LOVE that they offer FREE full breakfast, free wireless, and FREE nightly Kickback that totally covers our dinner!

Our Fav Hotel

Another thing we LOVE about Drury Hotels is they are typically set up as a suite. So for our family, we typically book a 2 queen suite, and then we move the queen mattress to the living area with the pull-out couch. That way Mr. Murray and I have a room to ourselves. 😉


(Our boys flop like fish and are very sleepers, so it’s best for us to get better rest, which is SO IMPORTANT on family vacations. They of course are used to their noisy sleeping.)


So after we loaded up on the free breakfast of yogurt parfaits, eggs, biscuits, cereal, fruit, potatoes, and yes, a DONUT, we packed up for a day exploring Colorado Springs.


The beauty that awaited us there at The Garden of the Gods was indescribable and like most of the most beautiful things in the world, cannot be captured fully in picture form. JUST GO SEE IT! Maybe these feeble photo attempts will convince you further…Just trust me it’s 1,000 times better in person.


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It was so to just let the boys be BOYS to climb, explore, and yes even be a little daring. Of course my job as mom was to yell out a few “Carefuls!” throughout the day, just for my own reassurance. The boys though they lack fear are pretty “safe” and don’t do anything too awfully hard to watch.

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After grabbing some Texas BBQ at Rudy’s we drove around and explored more of the area outside of the Garden of the Gods, including the Olympic Training Center in downtown Colorado Springs.  I’m a bit of an Olympics Super Fan, so I may have freaked out just a bit over the Mary Lou Retton cut-out. Mary Lou and I go back to 1984 and our first colored Zenith TV, with me imitating her beam routine on a yard stick. As you can see from her expression in this picture, she is just as excited to meet me.



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I think we could have found plenty to do in Colorado Springs for a week, but we tried to pack as much as possible into one day, and LOVED every minute!

Things We’d Love to Check Out Next Time in Colorado Springs:

We ended the day with dinner back at the hotel and a night swim. My birthday couldn’t have been better! 

One more full day of adventure was ahead…

*Thanks to Drury Hotels for covering a portion of our stay in Denver. Our LOVE for Drury Inn just keeps growing! 



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Murrays Meet Mountains


My boys have begged to fly on an airplane since they could talk. We used to take them to the airport just to give them a taste, but they’ve never had the feeling of the power of a take off, or being in the clouds, or traveling at 500 miles per hour. In fact, we didn’t have any plans at all for making their dream a reality, because flying with 6 involves spending a small fortune.


Late one Friday night my friend Adrienne found one-way tickets to Denver for $25 a pop. I thought it was a scam, or some sort of glitch, but it turned out to be legit, and something Brad and I couldn’t pass up for our family.

Could have we used that money for a new mattress, flooring, savings, GROCERIES?  We certainly could have, but no one talks about their mattress for years to come and groceries are gone in less than a week. An opportunity to introduce all of my boys to the Rocky Mountains for the price of one airline ticket – how could we not go for it? 

I think the video captures the enthusiasm pretty well from us telling the boys the other night…

So in a couple of weeks we’ll make a quick 3 night adventure to Colorado! We’re had such a great experience with Drury Inn for our St. Louis trip that we decided to partner with them again for our accommodations in Denver. We’re excited to check out the newly opened Drury Inn in Stapleton.

We hope to do as much outdoors as possible and take in all the beauty of the area. So far we’re planning a day in Colorado Springs at the Garden of the Gods, but that’s the only thing we have on our agenda.

We’ve never been to Colorado before, outside of the Denver airport, so we’re up for suggestions and MUST SEEs! Thanks in advance for your awesome sightseeing suggestions, food recommendations, and any other travel tips you’d be willing to offer.


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Easy Homemade Granola Bars

Easy Homemade Granola Bars

I was looking for something quick and easy to take to church for our Sunday school class over the weekend, and decided to try homemade granola bars, after seeing some easy recipes floating around Pinterest.  I adapted this one for our tastes and to give it more of a protein punch.  The boys were happy that I had a few leftovers to bring home for them to devour! I’m looking forward to making another batch for quick breakfast snacks and to send in lunches!

I didn’t expect them to be so simple and delicious to make homemade! 


What You’ll Need for Homemade Granola Bars:

  • 3 cups of Quick Oats
  • A 14oz Can of Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 2 T of Melted Butter
  • 1/3 cup of Peanut Butter
  • 1/4 cup of Ground Flax Seed
  • 1/2 cup of Chocolate Chips
  • 1/2 cup of Peanut Butter Chips

(The last four ingredients you can switch up/omit/add what you’d like!)

How to Make Homemade Granola Bars:

1. Preheat the Oven to 350 Degrees.

2. Grease Baking Sheet with Butter or Cooking Spray.

3. Mix Together Oats, Milk, Butter, Flax, Peanut Butter, and Chocolate & Peanut Butter Chips.

4. Spread Evenly in the Baking Sheet with Wet Hands.

5. Bake 15-20 Minutes.

6. Remove from Oven and Cut Into Granola Bars With a Plastic Knife While Still Warm.

7. Eat Immediately or Store to Enjoy for Breakfast or Snacks!

What’s your favorite on-the-go breakfast recipe? 


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