It’s a substantial gift. No, REALLY. Just Sayin’.

This morning in Jr’s room, our “waking up conversation” centered around his little “Cars 2″ racing set, currently residing at NeNe and Pop’s house.

He loves it, and loves Lightening McQueen, but I confess that we don’t know ALL the character names.

Me: “If we hurry up and get dressed we can go to NeNe’s and see Lightening and um, the other guy…. who is he?  Fransisco? I think that is it… we can go see them.”

Jr: “I don’t think that is his name, mom.”  (exasperated eyeroll added for emphasis.)

Me: “What do you want his name to be then?  Steve?  Bob? Phillip?”

Jr:  (cutting me off) “PHILLIP!  His name is Phillip, I think.”

Me:  “You like Phillip?  Ok, Phillip The Car…  wait!  Phillip the car!  Get it “Phill-up the car!?”

Jr: Blank stare

Me: literally slapping knee “It’s funny – mommy made a pun – Fill up the car…  Phillip The Car.”  Lots and LOTS of laughing.

The Mr. (from his office down the hall “That’s really bad, Keri.  Seriously.  You need coffee.”

Jr:  continued Blank stare

 

COME ON – that’s comedy gold, people!!  I am funny even on ACCIDENT.

Sometimes our gifts are totally unappreciated.

Just Sayin’.

 

 

 

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No really, I got this.

It’s no secret that Keri’s first choice for relaxing isn’t mountain recreation.

I confess that when it comes to the purple mountains magisty that is The Rocky Mountains, I tend to take an “over it” attitude. It’s a sin and a shame, but growing up here makes it easy to take for granted.

That being said, I want my kid to have the same experiences that I did when I was growing up – all of the hiking and frolicking and camping (ok, maybe we can skip camping… cabins are nice… walls are good,) and even skiing (NOT with me – HELL NO,) that growing up in Colorado should include.

Then later in life he can go ahead and roll his eyes at the idea of it all too, if he decides to.

That was the agreement – the point of moving way out here away from the city, right? Get Keri out of her comfort zone, get Jr into the crossroads of all the different parts of Colorado, get The Mr (bless his Texas transplant little heart,) closer to the mountains so he could be all, um, mountainy again (gigglesnort.) Check check and check.

Except it has come to my attention that people assume that I am bad at the whole “mountain fun time recreation” thing. Like my distain = my inability.

Um, no.

Keri can hike. Keri can drive the passes. Keri can get on a damn gondola. Keri can drink you under the table at 9000 feet and get up the next day and chase a toddler through tourist crowds.

If you’d like, I can also build you a fire, toast the perfect marshmallow, sing camp songs until hell and gone and splint your hiking injury with my trusty bandana and a stick (ok, I don’t know if I could still do that – but somewhere in my youth I could. Once a Girl Scout, always a Girl Scout.)

The level of surprise from family and friends at the idea that Keri is comfortable in the mountains took me WAY by surprise.

I admit, I have no love for being a passenger in a car driving through the mountains – control freak Keri likes to be the pilot (are there seriously people who don’t though? I can’t imagine!) Andplusalso, in true native style, I am ALL about our state’s booming tourism industry. It is beyond important to our economy. It does NOT make I-70 a place where I want to be driving on a Sunday afternoon. Traffic jams suck. Traffic jams on 6% -9% grades with semi-trucks? There needs to be a new word for that level of suck.

But kind of crummy travel issues aside, what’s not to enjoy? It is pretty and peaceful and things slow down a bit up there.

Last week I marveled at Jr’s 3 year old bravery as he cautiously did his first ropes course in Vail. I watched him squeal with glee on the gondolas, and observe flowers and bugs and rocks and rivers with wide, curious eyes. This momma can’t deny it – the Rockies match her son’s adventurous, open spirit perfectly.

So hide your shock, friends – Keri is dusting off her hiking boots and heading for the hills.

Relax. I know what I am doing.

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Judgy in Margaritaville. Just Sayin’.

Why yes, fellow pool goer, that IS a strawberry margarita made with beer in my koozie-clinching hand.
I figure the country club membership committee isn’t going to be beating down the door of the neighborhood pool to recruit my tattoo-clad self anyhoo – so I’m cool with what it’s doing to my rep, yo.

Plus- it tastes really  good.

I’d totally share.

Hashtag “come to the dark side”

Just sayin’.

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(Semi) Local Love: Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar

Thank you, North Carolina, and thank you, Good Times.

Why for, Keri, you say?

For bringing Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar into Colorful Colorado -first in Cherry Creek, early this year – and now right into “easy Keri lunch commute” distance with the opening of the 2nd Colorado location in the shiny new Webster Lake Promenade at I-25 and 120th ave in Northglenn.

The smarties behind Colorado native burger chain Good Times saw the delicious genius in the North-Carolina-founded Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar, and boom – direct to Colorado came the GINORMOUS and creative burgers served in a rock-n-roll industrial setting. (Andplusalso, the best fried pickles I have ever had. And I have had my share of fried pickles… and your share… and the shares of many others as well. Trust Keri.)

I am not usually one to go tooting the horn of chain-y restaurants – but I was busting down the door to get inside when this location opened on Monday July 28th.   It isn’t THAT chain-y yet, but it will be, because it is just too damn good not to grow and grow. (You can’t keep a good burger down, people.)

Whatever the number of locations, the local connection and AHHH-MAZINGLY good food had me sold on this joint as soon as the Cherry Creek location opened. It is like North Carolina’s tasty gift to the Centennial State.

But here is the REAL reason I am writing about it and not just gobbling up bunless Frenchies and hoping it doesn’t get too crowded:

The staff at Bad Daddy’s is beyond just being “well-trained.” Each and every one of them is as knowledgeable as any staff member could ever hope to be about the Bad Daddy’s concept and menu, and that is awesome. BUT – on top of that, they are warm, genuine, inviting, and exude a true attitude of hospitality that isn’t fake or forced.

Breath. Of. Fresh. Air.

Tie the great food and stellar people up in a package that includes lots of great craft beer on tap (All three Broomfield breweries are currently representing – WOOP WOOP,  Big Choice,) and put a big “we have a sweet roof patio” bow on top of it, and you have a place that feels right at home in Colorado.

Check out their story and peruse the menu – which features not just burgers and bar fare – but also some tasty salads ,(or build your own with plenty of fixings to choose from,) and can we talk about the “Emilio’s Chicken Sandwich?” Because BUTTERMILK FRIED CHICKEN, is where it starts, my friends. Seriously.

So….

Who’s ready for lunch? (Or happy hour. Or mid-afternoon snack. Or dinner. Or whatever – it’s burger time ANY time, just get me to Bad Daddy’s.)

_______________________________________________

Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar Northglenn

100 East 120th Avenue, Bldg B, Unit 120

(Located in the Webster Lake Promenade)

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Bedtime

Bedtime is getting hairy at our house.

Well, that is not completely accurate.  What I should say is, every night, as I run Jr’s bath, there are two very different scenarios that are equally likely to go down.
When I whirl my hand to blend his bathwater , I might as well be spinning a roulette wheel….
Where the toddler mood stops, nobody knows.

In the past months I have developed a checklist of precautionary measures that render me utterly ridiculous looking slightly less sexy than my usual smokin’ hawt look.

1. My hair gets twisted and wound tightly up on top of my head so no little  hands fighting to NOT be fished out of the tub can latch on to a handful of loose hair. (Which may have resulted in something that looked like The Mr trying to pry a howler monkey off my head on at least one occasion.)

2. My maxi skirt (summer uniform of choice, ) gets hitched up under my shirt, over my boobs, so I don’t trip as I chase a naked streak of toddler down the hall waving a pair of dinosaur jammies frantically.

3. A nighttime diaper is tucked in the hitched up waist of that skirt for a “quick draw” when I finally manage to pin that calf down.

4. Big, old glasses are a must, protects from flying bath toys, water, flailing limbs, etc, without sacrificing current pair.

5.  If it feels like it might be a marathon of toddler emotion after story time ends, there may occasionally be a travel mug containing a beverage derived from the grape. (Any port in the storm, people. )

6. Of course, all of this is most likely drenched by the time Jr has been extracted from the tub and secured in his puppy towel.

Last night bedtime was a 3 hour sob-fest filled with toddler bargaining attempts, whipping of nighttime buddies, clothing removal, and blood – curdling screams. (And that was just from me. Just kidding. Kinda.)
I came out of Jr’s room looking like I just did a triathlon, and fell instantly asleep in exhaustion and self-defense in case he woke up for more of the cray.

Tonight?  Obeyed every request, sweetly particpated in stories, cuddled for songs, and drifted immediately off to dreamland cuddling Beans The Bear.  So cute I swear he had a heavenly glow around his adorable little head.

:::hitching skirt back down and pulling off giant glasses ::::

Do you think they swap “guess what hoops I get MINE to jump through” stories over finger-paints at pre-school?

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