This summer, we took our first ever family vacation and spent a week at Horn Creek family camp. Horn Creek is a Christian retreat and conference center near Westcliffe, Colorado.
I must say, after the challenges of the past winter and spring, it was really good to get away!
This was our view for the week:
This is not a sponsored post – I just wanted to share about our experience because Horn Creek is such a great place for families to get away!
No vacation with young kids is ever totally relaxing, but our week at Horn Creek was about as close as we could get. My favorite part was not having to plan, prepare, or clean up meals for a week. The food was fabulous. I was expecting “camp food,” but we enjoyed meals like lasagna, enchiladas, and homemade pizza, and there was a salad bar at almost every meal.
Horn Creek Family Camps feature a speaker each evening, as well as several fun themed activities. On Tuesday evening, our kids were cared for while we enjoyed a picnic dinner together. Wednesday evening was “Western Night,” and it was complete with a BBQ dinner, horseback rides for the younger kids, a melodrama, and square dancing! The days were mainly open to explore the camp. Many familes choose to take day trips to the Great Sand Dunes or Royal Gorge, but we decided to stay at the camp mainly because of the ages of our kids. Two of them still take naps, and no one wanted to be in the car again after our 12 hour drive to get to camp.
However, no one was bored because there was plenty to do at camp!
The boys explored the creek and spent hours building forts out of fallen branches in the woods.
Owen enjoyed hanging out by the horse corral. He thought that this horse looked like “Silver” from the Lone Ranger! Trail rides are available at the camp.
We enjoyed bowling as a family at the rec center. This was a new experience for Gresham and Owen!
Aidan was the only one brave enough (or crazy enough?) to attempt the alpine swing. You wear a harness and they hoist you up really high on this cable system. Then, they release the rope and you swing back and forth – it’s quite a drop!
He did two turns on the swing and totally loved it!
We stayed in Mountain Meadows. There are several cabins and a small lodge. We stayed in the lodge and had a room with a huge bed (king size plus?) and two sets of bunk beds. There was still plenty of room to set up our pack ‘n play and still have a generous amount of floor space. The great part about the lodge was that we could put our kids to bed and then visit with the other adults downstairs in the common area.
In their book “Disciplines of a Godly Family,” Kent and Barbara Hughes talk about the “discipline of the family vacation.” Several years ago I read that and thought, “How does it take discipline to go on vacation?” But with young children, it does take discipline! Vacations require money, which may have to be saved up over the course of many months. Packing and preparing takes a significant amount of work. Responsibilities must be dealt with ahead of time and arrangements made for pets. Then there’s the “getting there” part, which for us involved a fair amount of car sickness. But the hassle of all that preparation was quickly forgotten when we were exploring as a family and experiencing new things! Families need time together, away from the pressures of everyday life. A change of scenery leads to exciting new memories and stories to be tucked away and retold again and again.
“Remember when we saw the mother and baby deer in the woods?”
“Remember when we saw a real black bear crossing the road?”
“Remember how fun it was when we all played foosball in the gym, and Aidan almost beat Dad?”
We’re planning to make some sort of vacation a yearly tradition for our family!
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