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July 1, 2013

Our trip to Vegas!

Well we got a little lucky last week in Vegas -- but our trip didn't exactly start like we'd planned. We purchased buddy passes for our trip months ago, even though my Dad, who works for the airlines, warned us that it may be hard to get on a flight. "Oh, we'll be fine!" we said. The passes were half the price of plane tickets, and that was too good a deal for us to pass up. We decided to take a risk. We figured, what's the worst that can happen? We'll get bumped on one flight and then get on the next? Well...yes; that's exactly what happened. And then we were bumped off the next flight. And the next. And the next! We were at the airport all day last Sunday, wondering if this trip was actually going to happen. It didn't help that our luggage was on our original flight and already in Vegas, and worse -- our chargers were in that luggage! Oy. You don't realize how tech-obsessed you are until your chargers are 1,960 miles away. Time to panic. We took a breather, found the nearest bar, and decided to make the best of our situation by sharing a couple of very over-priced beers. We felt a little better afterwards.

We finally got on a flight Sunday night, only because we lucked out and several people didn't check-in.   We were the last two people on the plane, and my seat was in the middle of two large men, but I couldn't have been happier. Who needs a window seat, or an arm rest for that matter? I would've laid down in the aisle if they'd let me. Coming home, we not only couldn't get on a flight, but since Las Vegas was expecting record temperatures that day, the flights were in danger of getting canceled altogether. Thanks to one very helpful ticket agent, we flew to Los Angeles at the last minute, then ran to a gate at LAX to make a connecting flight home. So maybe we did get a little lucky at the airport? We wanted to kiss the ground when we landed in Atlanta. (The moral of this story: do not use buddy passes. Not ever.)

But back to the fun stuff -- we made it to Vegas! We stayed at The Mirage for three nights, and The Flamingo for the last two. They were two very different hotels, but we had great times at both. At the Mirage, we saw the Beatles Cirque du Soleil, and at The Flamingo we had fun at their party pool -- with actual flamingos nearby! So fun.

James played lots of black jack (and won pretty big! hooray!) -- and I played the slots (I didn't win. Not at all. Ouch.) My favorite new slot is Plinko. Yes -- as in, Plinko of "The Price is Right." You guys. It was so much fun. You get to play actual Plinko and everything! So addicting...

Even though Vegas saw record temperatures last week, we tried to get around as much as we could on foot without passing out from the heat. We didn't make it to a lot of casinos on the strip, but we visited Caesar's Palace, the Bellagio and Cosmopolitan. All of them were just as over-the-top as everyone told me they'd be! There was plenty of glitter and other shiny things to be seen. We had fun exploring together. 

Last Tuesday we took a bus tour to the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. I am so glad we took a day to make the trip, because it was an amazing experience. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but I was overwhelmed by what I saw -- the view literally knocked me off my feet.  It's hard to put into words how vast the canyon really is in person -- and you feel so small looking out at it. 

The people who ventured out on the ledges made my palms sweat. Eek! Oh, and yeah -- that's James right there on the lower left, living dangerously...and giving me a minor heart attack. Because on either side of that ledge is a 100 foot drop-off. 

Too close to the edge. Too close. 

And last but not least -- we visited the Neon Museum! A friend suggested we see it, and I'm so glad we did. The Neon Museum is a vintage Vegas sign graveyard of sorts on the outskirts of town. The one thing I didn't know about today's Las Vegas before we arrived is that most of the old casinos -- including all of their famous old signs -- are pretty much a thing of the past. We didn't have time to go to Fremont Street, where a little of old Las Vegas still exists, but the main strip wasn't quite what I was expecting -- it was very cool in its own right, but more corporate than I was imagining. I thought there would be more signs and lights! So, visiting the Neon Museum was a must for me. The temperature was insane the morning we took the tour -- 106 degrees! -- but it was worth it. Many of the signs were painted and crafted by hand decades ago, and every last one is truly one of a kind. It was kind of sad to see them in their current state -- many are rusted, missing bulbs, and broken -- but I'm glad they still exist for people to look at and enjoy in their final resting place. They've all seen some wild times for sure.

I have so many photos from the tour, and since this post is already a little long,  I'm going to write a separate post with them later this week. So, stay tuned!

Until then, I hope you all have a great Monday and start to your week. We had a great time in Vegas, but it sure feels good to be home. 


  1. Your trip looks like a blast! We are going to Sedona, the Grand Canyon and Vegas in September and I can't wait! Which hotel do you think we should stay in in Vegas? :)

    1. You'll have so much fun! The Mirage was really nice -- we would definitely stay there again. The Flamingo was a little run down and not quite as nice, but both hotels were comped -- which was great! I know normally it isn't exactly budget friendly. I think most of the major casino hotels are super nice, too, like Caesar's, Bellagio, Cosmopolitan, Venetian, etc. At the Grand Canyon my in-laws said the main lodge is a nice place to stay, too. Have a great trip!

    2. Sounds exciting - thanks for the tips!
      Also... I can't believe you got to play Plinko! Haha I definitely want to do that!

  2. Looks like a great time! Awesome photos.


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