Thursday, December 8, 2011

Vegas, Baby!!!!

SO,  a week ago yesterday, I flew off to Vegas with much excitement and trepidation.
I'm always excited to go somewhere new and getting to go on a Girl's Weekend Away with a sweet friend just added to the excitement.
Trepidation due to the fact that I hadn't flown since my honeymoon.....11 years before.
Not to mention that one of the last flights I was on was incredibly turbulent.  I'm not kidding when I say that even the captain said it was a rough flight.  

Combine that with the fact that the Santa Ana Winds were blowing fiercely and traveling right on into Vegas, i was a lot  a little bit worried.

The flights out were a bit bumpy but all in all they were good flights.  
We landed very late in midnight.  {Read 3AM EST}

This was a trip FULL of indulgent surprises.  Things that I am completely undeserving of !
 And things that I feel incredibly blessed by, also.  
The first one was that Kandi, my friend, mentioned to me last Wednesday night that she had a surprise for me.  
She said that she was still trying to figure when to give it to me.
I love surprises so I just waited {sort of} patiently.
Right before our plane landed on Thursday, she handed me an envelope. 
I opened it.  
I found a note that said this, in part:

"Mindy, Surprise! Several church members were so excited to find out that you were going to Vegas. ....several of them contributed to the contents of this envelope - all wishing to remain anonymous......" 

Inside the envelope was money. A gift for me.  I can't tell you how that made me feel.  I was overcome with gratefulness and unworthiness to the point of tears and speechlessness.  I felt so very blessed and thankful.
Kandi kept her promise and didn't tell me who any of these folks are, but if any of you happen to be reading this, I want you to know that I am so grateful.  I can't even express what a blessing your gift was to me.  Thank you.  

THEN, Kandi's sister picked us up and drove us all directly to the Red Rock Resort, where we were staying.  Imagine the surprise on my face when we unlocked the door to this:

another view.....
Kandi's sister had arranged for this incredible suite to be our room for the weekend.  I cried....again.  Such an indulgent surprise.  
When we could settle ourselves down a bit, we went to bed.  
We go up pretty early the next day, though, to go out an explore the town.

We finally made it to the strip around lunch time and ate brunch at Payard's.  It was very delicious!!!!
We then walked around for a while to take in some of the sights.
This is Cesar's Palace....all decorated for Christmas.

We spent the day walking around, checking out the sights and then headed back to meet Kandi's sister for an evening event that she was hosting for the Rock & Roll Marathon. Kandi's sister works for the convention center in Vegas and spent most of the our time there working.  I felt really bad that she did all this great stuff for us but had to spend so much of her time working.
Anyway, we stayed at the reception which was in the top of one of those  amazing buildings {I can't remember right off which one} but the view of the town was breath taking. Some guy was talking on his phone standing right in the window almost the whole time we were there so I didn't get a picture to show you..... oh well. 

We left there and headed out to see this show.....
The Blue Man Group.  Great show -- even though, I thought they were just a might creepy....walking on the chairs, staring at everyone.  
Maybe it's just me.  I get kinda anxious when people don't smile.
See? He's not smiling.
The next day, after a nice brunch with Kandi's sister and her friend,  we went back to the strip to walk around some more....
This is from the top of the Eiffel Tower at the Venetian.  It is half the size of the actual Eiffel Tower in Paris, but look at the great view it offered of Las Vegas.
After the Eiffel Tower, we went to the Running Expo for the Marathon.
My friend Kandi is a runner so she loved it and got super excited about all the running gear.
I had a good time walking around and seeing her excitement!
We then did some shopping in the stores on the strip and I got to shop at an H&M for the very first time.  I love it.  
One thing that really surprised me was that it gets dark in Vegas at 4:30PM right now.
So, by the time we were done shopping, it was beginning to get dark.
I love this picture I got then.
That night, we got to attend the Carbing it Up Dinner for the Runners and eat some fabulous pasta.
Then, we were going to see the Michael Jackson Cirque de Soliel show....
I don't want to talk badly about a show, but it was just kinda strange......
HOWEVER, we were upgraded to seats in a suite and that was fantabulous.
Another incredible  {and this one was a fun treat for Kandi's sister even} surprise!!!!

The Marathon was to be Sunday evening so the strip was to be shut down most of Sunday.
SO, Kandi and I drove out to see The Hoover Dam.
Look at this beauty God cooked up!!!!

The Hoover Dam, One of the 7 Man made Wonders of the World -- with Lake Mead in the background.
Just breath taking!!!!

We had plans on the Strip that night, so we made our way back to Vegas pretty early in the evening.   One thing that I had asked to see was the famous Vegas sign and they indulged my desire.....
love it!!

We then went to an awesomely amazing Mexican Restaurant for supper. Seriously. It was delicious!!!  
After that we saw The Lion King.  THAT was an incredible show!!!!  

On Monday, we drove to The Grand Canyon.  The 4 1/2 hour drive was TOTALLY worth it.
God is amazing!!!!
I think that when he created The Grand Canyon he was showing off BIG!!!!
It was 25 degrees and there was a foot of snow on the ground at The Grand Canyon.....
but just look at this beauty. 
I was so excited to find this sign on the side of one of the rock faces.....incredible.
The earth truly is full of HIS riches!!!!

We enjoyed our time at the Grand Canyon and then drove back to Vegas to get some sleep before heading home on Tuesday morning.

I had such an amazing time and came home feeling blessed by so many people.
I'm especially indebted to my sweet friend, Kandi, who invited me to come on this trip and to her sister who put together so many wonderful treats for the two of us.
And to my hubby, who took care of the girls and came home early each afternoon so I could go.
To my Mother in Law who kept Brady for the weekend.
And to the folks at church who gave me a sweet surprise.

I thank you all.
I don't think I will ever be able to express my gratitude or what a blessing this trip was to me.
I love you all!

in HIM-

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am way behind on reading this....a fabulous post! I am so excited we got to spend that time together; and I am just so blessed to be your friend...God gave me a beautiful gift in you! The trip was amazing for me, too! Just to see your face sometimes was priceless!!

And the best part was....

Stacie: "Did that sign say Bullhead City"

Me: Yes, and this one says, Welcome to California!!

I love you friend!