Sunday, March 29, 2009

No, the aliens did not snatch me!

But I sort of feel like the month has just flown by in one fell swoop! The month started out with the anticipation of my sister's arrival to help me celebrate the big '4-0' and to enjoy some sister time. This was her first trip alone while her sweet hubby stayed home with the girls. I will say that regardless of anything we planned to do, the fact that she was coming alone and we would have some 'sister time' to do things we used to do before the kiddos were born topped it all. But then, WHAM! ~ within days of the big event a very close and long-time friend surprised me with a very special trip {an all-girls trip to Vegas to celebrate my big day}! I only had a couple days to prepare my family for my absence and I must tell you, the support my wonderfully supportive ubby has for my endeavors is a blessing! He assured me, as he always does, that all would be well on the homefront and to go and just have a good time. The plans were to pick up my sister at the airport and we three girls would go directly from DFW to Love Field to catch our flight to Vegas. We made it despite the rainy/stormy weather and arrived safe and sound in Sin City around 9:00 p.m. From there we caught a cab to the Excalibur. The cab line was crazy outside the airport at that time of the day and we finally were settled in for the short ride to the airport. Crazy as it sounds, this was my first ride in a cab.
It had been 17 years since I had been to Vegas, the last time being when I moved from Los Angeles to Denver in February 1992 and considering we weren't sure when we would be back we stopped to hang out and spent the night before going on to Denver.

It was definitely a lot different from what I had remebered it. The energy of the city is crazy and we walked around until 3 a.m. That was quite a feat considering my sister's body was three hours ahead of Vegas time and Kobi's and mine were two hours ahead of Vegas! By the time we got settled into bed Thursday morning our families were just about ready to get up and start their days.

I did happen to get me some In-N-Out burger Thursday and Friday for lunch. We walked the short distance from the hotel to eat and with this menu you certainly can't go wrong. The price is just right! And the food makes my belly happy!

And think about it - when you offer a limited menu I guess it's easy to keep the price low and the quality high. And can I just tell you, the shakes are to DIE for! And the fries, yum! And the burgers - oh yeah baby! Cooked fresh AFTER you order.
Need I say more?
[How did I not get a photo of that great chocolate shake?]

My little sister playing the nickel slots. Yes, 5 cents! That's where I won all my money. No, seriously, I did. I won over $30 bucks playing it ~ and it was on my birthday no less. And there was a little Blackjack going on as well.

My after-dinner birthday drink appropriately named "Under the Sheets" because if you drank all of it you would definitely end up under the sheets for days. That orange cognac crap was bad. It burned going down and then continued to burn my belly until later that night.
After dinner we took the Monorail over to Bally's/Paris where we were decided to start exploring and we came across the dueling piano bar at Napoleon's in Paris which if you know me was a perfect way to spend my birthday. I love, love, love the dueling pianos! And these piano players made some major green. Especially with these 5 people sitting kitty corner from us who kept shelling out money - and I mean big bucks - to the piano players but the weird part was that they would give the money to the four girls sitting in front of us to give to the piano players. That group of 5 (we have it figured as a dad with his two sons and there were two women whom we thought that one was the wife and the other was possibly the wife or girlfriend of the guy to the right in the photo) were obviously loaded with all the money they were throwing around. They bought shots for the girls in front of us and then when they found out it was my birthday they sent me one as well. Free shots - I'll take it!

Kobi, Heather and I inside Caesar's Palace. Sure with the kind gentleman who offered to take our photograph would have turned the camera so we could have gotten the naked people statues in the photo as well!

Water show at Bellagio.
New York, New YorkParis
Somewhere over the Grand Canyon.

The trip was amazing. We walked for hours and hours each day. We rode the Monorail that services The Strip to get from one end of The Strip to the other so we could explore the hotels/casinos. I did, however, happen to have a casualty. I lost my Juicy Couture Hollywood's (a.k.a. my sunglasses) on the monorail when I didn't put them in my bag and just set them on top while I was snapping photos and they must've fallen down the other side and I didn't realize it so when I got off the train and went to put them on I realized they were gone it was too late. Hopefully someone is enjoying them because I sure miss them. My new Betsey Johnson's, which I bought to replace my Juicy's, aren't quite cutting it like I had hoped they would. I may be on a mission for another pair shortly. I'll need to frequent the Nordstrom Rack (Nordstrom's outlet) to see if I can score something I am happier with.

We three girls had the most awesome time (it was an absolutely perfect trip despite the casualty) and although we got little sleep and were entirely exhausted by the time we got home the memories we made will be with us for a lifetime. And I cannot thank Kobi & Eric enough for this wonderful gift.

We returned and my family had some gifts for me and then we headed out to Campisi's for pizza with a couple other friends before we headed off to our class where we created a wonderful birthday memories scrapbook taught by the fabulous Janet Hopkins. And there were lots of wonderful cupcakes and little surprises from the girls at the class. I felt so special and lucky to be spoiled like that.

After returning from Vegas I had three more full days to spend with my sister and the kids were on spring break so it was nice just to hang out, do some shopping, play some video games, laugh and talk and enjoy the beautiful weather before we had to re-enter the real world.

Flowers from my sweet hubby and kiddos. And presents and money to spend at House of 3 as well! So excited about that.

I also got this wonderful bouquet of flowers from my Dad and step-mom. A total surprise and a wonderful bonus since they had already gifted me some cash that I will use on a rainy day.

I was surprised by my dear friend Michelle and her bebe boy, Brock with this wonderful Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz picnic basket filled with wonderful surprises such as bunny plates, vintage "his" and "hers" towels and a precious chenille blanket. I cannot wait to plan a picnic for me and my sweet hubby so I can use my wonderful vintage picnic basket.

All in all it was a wonderful month full of beautiful surprises, coffee with dear friends, a special visit from my sister (the most wonderful sister of all) and many, many other wonderful things like starting my photography class, The Photographers' Workshop with Karen Russell that I have been so excited about. My photos will definitely be better by the end of this 10-week period and I am happy to say that I will also know a lot more about my camera.
You'd be excited if you had this precious little thing to keep all your class notes in, too!


Shell said...

Fantastic pictures!
What a wonderful birthday for a "deer" friend

donnaj said...

looks like y'all had a great time!
what a way to celebrate.


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