Thursday, April 26, 2012

Secondary Dream Job

I am lucky. I count my lucky stars everyday for my life.

Great husband.

Great munchkin

Great family and friends

and a dream job. I love what I do everyday.

Not everyone is as lucky.

Tony asked me recently, if I couldn't do what I do now, what alternate career would I choose. I had to really stop and think about it. Stay at home mom wasn't really an I came up with Travel Agent.

See, me and Trip Advisor are BFF. Sometimes I just get on there, and look up random places, hotels, things to do.

I still look up reviews of the resort we stayed at on our honeymoon in Cabo, or that trip we took to California when we got engaged, the hotel we stayed at in Tucson when we attended a friend's wedding, and resorts that are on our "I want to go to there" list. {Liz Lemon 30 Rock fans?}

I love doing the research, I love making a travel file for when we travel, I just love it all.

So, do tell. What would your secondary dream job be?

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

I spy...

a little foot...

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Weekend in Pictures

Avery and Tony stopped by office on Friday afternoon right before quitting time. Avery wanted to work, and went right for the computer, keyboard, and mouse. It is fascinating how she picks up so much of what we do. 

Tony started his softball league on Friday nights. Avery and I went for a little bit to watch her daddy play. 

We were also dog sitting for Tony's parents this weekend while they were out of town. Poor Snoopy was scared of Avery and hit under this table for most of the time when Avery was awake. 

Avery found her though. 

She also was looking for the puppy in the mudroom. 

She also helped me clean the house, and I can't quite remember cleaning being so fun. 

We also managed to sneak out of the house and see some friends in from Minneapolis and Chicago. If I can get copies of some of those photos, I will post them here {Sarah, send me copies please!}

How was everyone's weekend?

Sound Sensory

I heard Lynyrd Skynyrd on the radio tonight. It instantly put me in the mood to be outside around a bonfire, hanging out with friends, and having a few beverages.

This was high school for me.... Or a large part of my memory of high school.

Classic Rock is always in style. Am I right?

It reminded me of days long past, of great friends, and a simpler time. 

I tend to look back to high school as a time that was difficult or unhappy for me. That is not always correct. My life is different now, but shaped by my past, good or bad. For that, I am extremely grateful for. It was not all bad. I came out of it with some lifelong friends. I don't see them often, but it is so easy to pick right up where we last left off. To me, that is true friendship. 

I am blessed beyond measure. 

Monday, April 16, 2012

Viva Las Vegas!

We just returned from a vacation to Sin City. I didn't take many pictures because I didn't carry my camera much, and what I did get was with my phone. We were too busy having fun to take many pictures, so bear with me on a recap lacking in photo proof. 

We flew out of Des Moines on Allegiant Saturday night, so we were ready for some cocktails. We also watched The Hangover on Tony's Kindle Fire to get us pumped up. It has been a few years since we have been to Vegas, and or flown on Allegiant. Things have changed a bit with their fees and seating policies. Not a real big fan of paying to carry on {thankfully we booked before they changed this fee}, or not getting an assigned seat when you check in.

We were lucky on the flight out that we snagged a couple of exit row seats that made for a much more comfortable journey. We did get to sit together on both flights, so it could have been worse. It just causes me a bit of anxiety when I don't know for sure where we were sitting, or if we would even get seats together. 

We stayed at Bally's this trip. Tony has stayed there before, but I had not. We got a great deal online with our Total Reward membership {Harrah's/Caesars properties}, and an upgrade deal that we were offered via email. Our room was a recently renovated one that was quiet and clean. 
photo via google images

The location of Bally's cannot be beat. Another plus was that we were free to use any other Total Rewards hotels pools. This was highly important to me on our vacation. I like to lounge poolside. 

After spending Sunday at Planet Hollywood's sports book watching The Masters, Brewers and Twins baseball, we went to the room to take a nap and get ready for dinner. We had both downloaded an app from TripAdvisor that would allow you to see what restaurants/clubs/shopping/casino's nearby were highly rated. It even provided you a compass walking map through your phone. I was playing around with it and made a reservation for Mon Ami Gabi at the Paris. 

photo via google images
We got a seat on the patio and this was our view for dinner. Not bad. The fountains at Bellagio are so classic Vegas to us. We really enjoyed our meal and it was one of our favorite parts of the trip. 

Like I mentioned above, we were free to use the pools at other Total Rewards hotels, so we walked over to Caesars the next day to use that pool. All we took with us was our room key, ID, credit card, and hotel room charge slip. 

photo via google images

We chose to sit by the pool shown below. There was not a free lounge chair available after we walked around a bit, so we talked to the concierge about the rates to rent a premium chair or daybed. We figured since it was a Monday that it would be reasonable. That was also a big reason why we stayed at Bally's. We could save money there and use it for other fun things like this. Well, we found a great deal. The daybeds were going for $150 with a $50 food and beverage min. for $200 total. The individual premium chairs were $25 each, no beverage minimum. We were sold on the individual chairs, and we chose a smaller, quieter pool to relax by. Once we walked around some, and saw people laying towels down on the concrete up against the building walls, we were even more ok with our decision. It was such a fun, relaxing day. 

photo via google images

In all the times I have been to Vegas, I had never been down to Freemont St. Tony had been, and told me that it was something to see at least once. We decided to go ahead and do that on Tuesday and follow it up with Hard Rock, since we were going to have to use cabs for both locations anyways. 

photo via google images

Did you know that you can now zipline down Freemont St? It was something fun to see for sure. We passed on that however. 

photo via google images

We walked around, in and out of the casino's, and witnessed some insane people watching. Vegas never disappoints. 

photo via google images

After that we headed to the Hard Rock casino. This was one of my favorite places in past visits. Notice I said "was". The place was dead, and we realized it was a Tuesday night, but this is Vegas, there is always something going on. The dealers were rude, acting too cool to answer questions or interact with us, and with the redesign, and addition to the casino, it lost it's mojo. 

It was always such a fun, electric place to hang out, gamble, walk around. Now... not so much. We stayed here on a past visit, and we had a lot of fun. I am not so sure we will make a point to come back given it's new attitude and it's location off strip. We left disappointed for sure. 

photo via google images

We spent a lot of time at Caesars Palace on our last day. We walked around, played a few slot machines, and made dinner reservations for that night at their Japanese steakhouse. 

We even had our own private teppanyaki table

  {I had to google to see the difference between teppanyaki and hibachi. I was not sure of the difference}

The dinner was delicious and just filling enough that we didn't want to go back to the hotel to beach ourselves, as we thought we went out! We walked around all over. We went to Bellagio, Bally's, Paris, back to Bellagio, and finally back to Bally's. Where we proceeded to find the Sbarro that was open 24/7 and have a snack. We had so much fun! We saw people betting insane amounts of money at craps, we saw newlyweds in their wedding attire, we saw people get thrown around the street by Las Vegas PD while wearing their bike helmets. We decided then to call it a night. We had seen a lot.

One last note...

We played a lot of the Hangover slot machines. They were too fun not to play, and we could always find one open. We would win some, then lose, then win some back, then was a lot of fun! The bonus games are the best.

photo via google images

It had been 3 years since our last visit to Vegas, and hopefully it won't be another 3 years before we can get back. We always have so much fun. 

Anybody have fun Vegas stories?

Friday, April 6, 2012

Blog Break

I am here.... Just busy, tired, and taking a slight blog breather.

Avery helps me with dinner these days. 

Avery has been spending time in MN with my family. Our daycare mom is on maternity leave for a few weeks, and we are all out of sorts with Avery's schedule. 

Reeve {my cousin AJ's son}, Jade and Lexi {our neices} and Avery.

My mom dug this picture out of me when I was Avery's age. We could be twins at this point. 

I fell a bit behind schedule on my $100 Home project for March: The master bath. 

I have most of it done, just need to hang the roman shade. 

If I feel like it, I will make a post about the whole process with before and afters tonight. These are some progress shots from the last few weeks. I hung those babies myself, and am darn proud of it!

Ta-ta for now...