Sunday, January 19, 2014

The Hidden Gem of The Rockies...SNOW MOUNTAIN RANCH!

Family vacation?  Yes, please!

And then the questions begin...

Where to go?
What to do?
Where to stay?
What to eat?
Will ALL the kiddos enjoy it?
Will the parents enjoy it?

Family vacations can be pretty've heard the saying, "I need a vacation from my vacation", right???

We all love to get away, but when it's harder to leave than to stay, it's easy to second-guess your decision to go.

May I share some advice?  It will save your sanity, and your family will think you are the Vacation Master.


The view from our room...GORGEOUS!

If you've never heard of the YMCA of the Rockies, it's time to do some research.  A little over an hour from the Denver area, between Winter Park and Granby, this resort-style camp is the perfect "staycation" for families.  We had the absolute pleasure of staying there for the weekend, and it was one of the best trips we've ever taken.

It is, for sure, a hidden gem right here in the Rockies.

We stayed in the Indian Peaks of three lodges on the property.  The room, meant for families (and starting at only $96 a night!), had two queen beds and a pull out couch.  It included a walk-out deck or patio, private bathroom and a fridge and microwave.  What it didn't include was a TV, and we didn't miss it for a second.  We were either too exhausted and went to right to sleep, or we hung out as a family by the fire in the lodge and drank hot cocoa.  Priceless.

Playing games by the fire at
The Indian Peaks Lodge
Hanging out by the fire in the lodge

The best thing about Snow Mountain Ranch is that you NEVER have to leave while you are there.  Everything you need or want is right at your fingertips...from the dining hall to the activities.  There is LITERALLY something for EVERYONE here...

  • 5,200 acres of  amazing land
  • tubing - bring your own or use theirs!
  • swimming - thee is a rock wall IN the pool!
  • roller skating
  • indoor rock climbing
  • indoor archery
  • ping pong
  • basketball
  • floor hockey
  • dodgeball
  • sledding
  • ice skating - this outdoor rink is a real treat
  • dogsledding - take a ride or hang out with the dogs!
  • sleigh rides - take a dinner ride or some hot cocoa
  • snowmobiling
  • snowshoeing - check out the Mountain Man's Cave!
  • nordic center
  • cross country skiing
  • horseback riding
  • library
  • craft shop - paint pottery, work with leather, and so much more!
  • campfires

Most of the activities are included with your stay, or are available for a nominal fee.  Seriously, where can you find THAT these days?

The Kiva Center

Archery at The Kiva Center
Riding the trike at the roller rink!
Rock climbing at the Kiva Center
My kids loved The Kiva Center, where they could roller skate and play indoor games like floor hockey and ping pong.  My youngest could even ride a trike on the roller rink!  (He loved it so much that I had to drag him kicking and screaming out of there on Sunday.)  We made appointments to rock climb and try indoor archery as soon as we got there...I would recommend it as the sessions fill up quickly. 

Tubing (and rolling around in the snow...
hence the crazy snow-covered face!)
Tubing was another favorite!  You can bring your own sled/tube or use the ones at The Ranch (we did both), and if you want to brave the drop in temperature after dark, you can use the hill until 8pm!

Roasting marshmallows at The Homestead

Sombrero Stables...some lucky
girl got to sit up in front!
We were super excited to take a sleigh ride at Sombrero Stables ( a hop and a skip from the Indian Peaks Lodge).  Our driver, Cole, was a hoot, and kept us entertained and informed throughout the ride.  We stopped for hot cocoa and roasted marshmallows at one of the property's historical sites...there is just something special about hanging out around a campfire in the snow, knowing that a family stood in that same spot 100+ years ago.  If you have the opportunity to take a sleigh ride, it is worth every penny.

Cabins, both family and reunion sized, are also available but book up quickly, and are perfect for small and large gatherings (and the view!  Gorgeous!).  The camp is open year round, and there are many spring/summer activities offered during the warmer months, including summer camp for your kids!

I could go on and on and on about Snow Mountain Ranch, and I could not give it a higher recommendation...BUT you simply MUST visit to understand the beauty of this place, physically and mentally.  You will want to go back as soon as you drive away.  We did.

Check out all the details about Snow Mountain Ranch here!  And be sure to tell them that Go Go Family sent you!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Your Gamer will have a BASH at The Bash Brothers Gaming Cave!

Does a gamer live at your house?

I have one at mine.  And he would be holed up in front of his video game of choice 24/7 if we let him.

He likes to tell me what happened during his game...blow by blow.  Sometimes I even get to see a playback. I do the best I can to appear interested, buuuut......... (insert yawn here)

If you have a tweenager, or a teen, or a husband, or a boyfriend, or a dad (you get the picture, right?), and are in a similar situation, you are going to LOVE me for what I am about to share with you!

Bash Brothers Gaming Cave Banner

The Bash Brothers Gaming Cave.

The Bash Brothers have tapped in to a market that has been undiscovered until now.  Set up a warehouse style shop with multiple Xbox 360's, rows of computers with the fastest internet speed this lady has ever heard of, a party room, and the brand new Xbox One.  Top that off with snacks, drinks and a jukebox, and you won't see your gamer for hours...AND they will get to share their gamer stories with other gamers!!!  Woohoo for moms everywhere!


The prices are extremely reasonable, and unused time can be carried over to your next visit.  They even have a Hump Day Special on Wednesdays.  There are special events (be sure to check their calendar here:, Ladies' Nights, and tournaments.  There was even a Lock In on New Year's Eve! 

Parents can put restrictions on their child's gaming, if they choose.  If your kiddo is 13 or older, you can even drop them off while you get a massage (just a suggestion)!

I know that I am always on the lookout for good birthday party options for my boys, and The Bash Brothers Gaming Cave is definitely going on my list.  Party pricing starts at $15 per guest.  (If you have 6 or more guests, the birthday kid gets a *FREE* pass to come again.  Another score for mom!)  You get a reserved party room, and are allowed to bring in food for the celebration.  My guess is that it will be the EASIEST party you ever throw...I will let you know, because my oldest has already requested The Gaming Cave for his upcoming BASH (see what I did there?)!!!

Check out The Bash Brothers website for more info:

And be sure to tell them that Go Go Family sent you! :)

DISCLAIMER:  Don't get me wrong...I love my kid and love hearing about what he enjoys.  However, a mom can only take so much of the latest video game triumph...LOL!!!!