In great need of an attitude adjustment and break from my recent routine we escaped for the Thanksgiving weekend. Although there was enough work to fill every day, all responsibilities were discarded as we headed to Colorado Springs Friday morning.

My Priority Club rewards program with InterContinental Hotels provided three free nights that needed used before Christmas. We selected Staybridge Suites for our lodging accommodations, enjoying the extra space of a one bedroom suite over a typical hotel room. 

Each day we included a couple of activities and a good restaurant choice, staying busy without being on a tight schedule or trying to fill every moment. I worked hard at putting aside all the concerns and to-do lists for the next couple of weeks, giving body and mind a reprieve for a few days.

While much of America was home eating turkey sandwiches we indulged in our favorite Springs dining experiences. Friday night we loved every bite at the Caspian Cafe, a Mediterranean Bistro presenting an amazing range and blend of flavors, great service and warm hospitality – a totally delightful experience. German food, drink, ambiance and music was the feature Saturday night at the Edelweiss Restaurant. We came away stuffed, and with pounds of Christmas stollen for home and gifts. Made to order Bananas Foster atop cinnamon ice cream topped off our Sunday Champagne Brunch at the Sunbird Restaurant.

In need of a salad and a bite we tried Zio’s Italian Kitchen late Sunday evening. This extremely reasonably priced restaurant proved to be a positive choice. Our waitress was excellent, creating such a positive feeling we’ll return. We especially liked the herb blend served with the infused olive oil and a warm loaf of crusty bread. When we asked about purchasing the herbs she told us they didn’t sell it but would send us home with some. Sure enough she soon returned with two containers  – and, a loaf of bread. The attitude exhibited at Zio’s made all the difference in our evaluation.

Bob wanted to take pictures of the Cadet Chapel at the United States Air Force Academy and we were fortunate to have a glorious sunny day on Friday. Old Colorado City was much too busy for us to want to join the crowds so we drove on through. We did make a stop at the Garden of the Gods Trading Post for an ice cream cone and pokied around among the tee-shirts, hats and souvenirs. I even purchased Bob a Christmas present.

Saturday morning we headed over to the United States Olympic Training Center for more Christmas shopping and pictures. We didn’t take the tour since it was abbreviated with the buildings closed for the holiday weekend. It had been several years since we visited the Money Museum of the American Numismatic Association. Bob didn’t think the exhibits were as interesting as we’d seen previously but again there was some shopping to be done. What fun to purchase off the beaten track while the hoards were at the mall.

We spent the afternoon at the Broadmoor, resting over an Irish Coffee and snack in The Hotel Bar, taking pictures of holiday decorations, browsing the shops and watching families enjoying their holiday weekend. The tree lighting ceremony on Saturday evening is a nice transition from Thanksgiving to the Christmas season.

Sunday afternoon found us at the Simpich Showcase Theatre in awe of the creativity and artistry of David Simpich and his fantastic marionettes. I always go away from his shows stunned by his talent, feeling like I’ve been in the presences of genius. Wish he could pull some strings and share some of that genius.

When Monday dawned with cloudless skies we decided to spend a couple of hours taking pictures at the Garden of the Gods before heading home and getting back to reality. The weekend worked wonders for my spirit . What fun it was to play tourist just an hour away from home. I think this could be an ongoing theme.