Thursday, June 27, 2013

Vegas, Baby

**Warning:  mucho pictures**

We had not been to Vegas since our honeymoon and decided to make a stop since we had a week off and were in the area.  (By the way, Vegas is way cheaper when you don't fly there!)  This was my 4th time to go and before I share our fun through pictures, I'd like to explain the Vegas transition I've taken:

Trip 1:  heels, dressy clothes, cabs, fancy restaurants, clubs, 2 shows, staying up all night

Trip 2: (first time with Trent) still in heels, dressy for the most part, a few nice meals, 2 shows, up pretty late but nothing crazy

Trip 3:  Honeymoon, packed flip-flops and heels and it was rainy and cold so I was bundled up mostly, dressed up one night, one fancy meal and a show, karaoke, and  a $1 hot dog

Trip 4:  khaki shorts, tank tops, flip-flops, buffets and in bed before 11:00 PM.  

And that, my friends, is a Vegas evolution.  And I like it.  I saw all the young pretty things all dolled up with their 4 inch heels and I thought, "bless their hearts.  They look good, but I know they're in pain."

So anyway, we left Oregon and broke up the drive to Vegas by stopping in Reno first.  I enjoyed seeing all the lights.  (And yes, we found Mexican food for dinner.)

The next night we stopped in Tonopah, NV.  It was an...interesting town.  Not much to see or do.  Apparently it was an old mining town.  We went to the "nice" hotel for dinner and I fell in love.  The building has been around since 1907 and they had old relics on display.  We assumed it used to be a bank due to the safes and what not.  Plus, they had framed checks written by famous people.

Desk from 1907.  I want it.

Cash register.

I wanted to pull on the door...just to be safe ;)
(Also, my hair really isn't that brown.  It had just been several days since I gave it a good washing.)

We got to Las Vegas and checked into Planet Hollywood and went straight to Gordon Ramsays's BurGR.  We shared onion rings and a burger.  Both were amazing.  We highly recommend it.

We loved the room and the view!  And it was a steal: $65 a night with a BYGO buffet included!

We walked to the New York, New York casino because Trent had $15 in chips from YEARS ago.  We're not big gamblers at all.  It's fun to walk around and watch people and put a few bucks in slot machines here and there.  We ended up literally putting $3 in a penny slot machine a won $300.24.  Yay!  And that ended up being our fun money for the week.

If you've never been, you have to watch the Bellagio fountains.  They're pretty remarkable.

I just thought this was pretty.  This is in the Million Mile Shops in Planet Hollywood.

View of the PH casino all lit up.  

We got some pool time.  And whoa was it hot!

There's nothing quite like the strip at night.  And every time we're there, there's more construction!

After two nights on the strip, we decided to stay down on Fremont Street.  I'd never seen Fremont Street, so I was excited for a new Vegas experience.

Our hotel was only 6 blocks from the famous Pawn Shop.  We walked down there to see it again.  (We saw it on our honeymoon and actually got our pics taken with some of the stars.)

They've expanded and the stars were no where to be found.  Then we were all kicked out because they were about to start filming.  Major bummer.

We thought this was hilarious.  Like Jon Bon Jovi needs to be clarified as a rock star.  

We got back and Trent wanted to zipline over the street.  I did not join.  But there he is...the tiny figure in the distance leaning back.  He loved it.

Every night on Fremont Street, the outside casino lights go out and the roof (is it a roof?) of Fremont, which is covered in LED lights, puts on a show choreographed to music.  Every hour on the hour.

And here's Fremont at night.  We stayed at the Fremont Casino.  (Another steal: $35 a night and 2 free buffets each day!)

For our last night, we decided to head back to the strip.  First stop, The Venetian for lunch and sight seeing.

We went to The Bellagio to watch the final game of the NBA playoffs.  We watched it in the Sports Book on a huge screen in recliners.  Very comfortable.  Also, the place was filled with annoying Miami fans.  Oh well.

Of course we had a great time, but it never fails that when it's time to leave, we are so ready.  Ready for quiet and people who wear the appropriate amount of clothing.

We stopped to see the Hoover Dam.  I am in awe that it was built so long ago and is still there!   

This reads, "It is fitting that the flag of our country should fly here in honor of those men who, inspired by a vision of lonely lands made fruitful, conceived this great work and of those others whose genius and labor made that vision a reality."  Isn't that lovely?  America. 

I had to.

This bridge is crazy huge, too.  We drove over it, but the sides are too tall to see the dam.  Read about the bridge here.

That trip led us to where we are now.  We're in Arizona for a little bit longer then we start the trek back home.

Whoa it's hot here.  Yowza.

Thanks for traveling with us!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Oregon Trail...

Do y'all remember that game?  Oh I loved it so much.  Although, it was never fun to get dysentery or have to go sell stuff to get a new wagon axle.


Greetings from Arizona!!!

We left California and headed up to Oregon.  We stopped in a town called Yreka, CA for the night.  I didn't take pictures because the town wasn't much to look at.  But the history is quite neat!  Take a read here.  I'll also inform you that we were able to find very good Mexican food.  Amen.

On the way to our campsite near the North Bend/Coos Bay area, we saw Mt. Shasta.  It is HUGE!

When we stopped to get groceries, I decided I needed some pants to keep me a bit warmer.  And these babies were only $7 at the Walmart.  Yay!

Is he cooking leaves?  No.  That's a lot of kale.  

When we booked the site, we got water and electricity (like always) but when we got all settled and ready to air up the mattress, the outlet was for an RV thingy.  And the closest store was already closed. In other words, we had to wait until the next day to get an adapter thingy so our extension cord would work and I could have a space heater.  The first night of sleep was BRUTAL.  That is not an exaggeration.  We're talking mid-40s people.  That's cold.

After two nights of camping, we had a show in North Bend at Celebration Center Church.  

They put us up in a casino for the night and I was all, "we're not in the Bible Belt anymore, Toto."  It was a great room with an even better view.

The show was fantastic!  And we are so thankful for their hard work with promoting.  We will definitely be back!

Big thanks to Pastor Ron and Debbie.  Awesome folks!  (But can we discuss WHAT IN THE WORLD is happening with my bangs.  Good lawd.)

We left the hotel/casino and headed back to the campsite where I commenced to being freezing and questioning how anyone can handle that weather when it's supposed to be summer.

We I decided we needed to make s'mores.  They are so good and I cannot believe this was a first for us while camping.  I must tell you...there is now a trend to, instead of Hershey's chocolate, use a Reese's cup.  We didn't try it, but it's been put on my list of get in my belly.

And The Best Marshmallow Roaster-er has now been added to the list of Trent's many talents.

When we were finished with the roasting stick, I used it and fire to make a sign!

One of our dinners: potatoes and onions with butter, veggie medley (kale, peppers, onion, mushroom), turkey sausage, chicken, shrimp.  Yum.

He can also stoke a mean fire.  With tiny sticks.  

It made us laugh because it reminded us of one of the best SNL skits of all time.

One day, we went to Heceta Beach.  It was then confirmed that we do indeed love any kind of beach.  Cold or not.

Our last night camping, we decided to go to town to eat.  The closest town was Florence and it proved to be another cute town on the coast.  Lovely and quaint.  And I'll tell you crab stuffed mushrooms were devoured eaten and enjoyed with class.  

The next show was also in North Bend and the church owns a cabin in the woods.  We were able to stay there for two nights (and shower and do laundry, praise Jesus).  It was so cool.  We love open floor plans and tend to say things like, "oh, we could totally live here."

Trent had an interview with Rick at the local station, K-LIGHT.  They were a pleasure!  Also, a lady works there named Sandra Bullock.  =)

A listener who owns a restaurant on the bay, heard the interview and called to invite us to lunch.  We were thrilled and honored!  Walking down that ramp thing made me a tad nervous, but what awaited was totally worth it.  Fresh, fresh, fresh seafood. 

This is the owner's boat right beside the restaurant.  He catches daily what he serves daily.  And what he doesn't catch, he gets from local fishermen.

Thanks, Rob!!!

The show was that night at Hauser Community Church.  Trent broke a nail (one that he uses to play guitar) at the radio station, so we had to find a place to repair it.  After eating, we were pressed for time and it didn't help that we went to 3 places that had no openings or were closed.  Then we found a girl who literally had 10 minutes before her next appointment.  Crisis averted.

The show was another great one.  People in that area sure love concerts!  

We had a wonderful time in Oregon.  It was beautiful and I'm not going to lie...sitting here in Arizona, I could use a little bit of that Oregon weather.  Just a little.