Category Archives: Vegas

Reunion In Vegas

Twenty five years. That’s how much time passed between visits with my girlfriend, Wendy.
 
Twenty five years ago, I didn’t know it would be decades before I saw her again. I can’t even recall our last hurrah. Possibly drinks and dancing at Black Angus. Maybe an evening bbq at a friend’s house.
 
You might guess we reunited through FaceBook, but it was actually Flickr, where I found a recent photo of her, and MyLife (formerly Classmates dot com) where I paid $14.95 for 1 month membership and access to her contact information.
 
Not long after mailing her a letter and current family photo, my phone rang. It was Wendy!
 
♫♪♬ Reunited and it feels so good! ♫♪♬
 
Fast forward to Tuesday.
 
♫♪♬ My girlfriend’s back… ♫♪♬
 
Wendy, her husband, and her parents were spending a week in Vegas. By 11am, I was hugging my friend again after all these years! Wow, she was as gorgeous as ever. And tall! I don’t remember her being so tall. Her family was all so nice, and made me feel welcome.
 

Fashion Show Mall

Fashion Show Mall

While the men headed to the Bass Pro Shop, we ladies headed for the Fashion Show Mall. Making our way through the maze of underground parking, we scored a sweet parking spot close to one of the many entrances. Macy’s, Dillards, Chico’s, Coldwater Creek, and Forever 21 called out to us, and we answered! Two hours flew by as we navigated the stores, trying on outfits here and there. Wendy scored an excellent deal at Macy’s, bagging 4 pairs of shorts and a pair of capris for $50.
 
For lunch, we drove to Tommy Bahama’s Cafe at Town Square.
 
Three Blackberry Basil Smashes, please! Actually, they said they no longer offer that cocktail, but after checking with the bartender, we were told they WOULD make them! We have a feeling they scooted over to the nearby Whole Foods for ingredients.
 
Tommy Bahamas lunch

Tommy Bahamas lunch

Wendy’s Mom and I had the fish tacos, and Wendy had chicken salad. The fish was blackened and spicy, with contrasting cool, crisp slaw on top. To the side was a deep fried tortilla bowl with plantains and sweet pineapple, coconut “pudding”.
 
Laughter and conversation flowed easily. It is amazing to pick up with dear friends right where you left off. We drank, ate, enjoyed the lovely atmosphere, and each other’s company for several hours.
 
I won’t let another 25 years slip away.
 
 
Wendy and Jean

Wendy & Jean


 
• What’s the longest you’ve gone without seeing a friend?
• Are there pictures of you on Flickr that you knew nothing about?
• Do you like flowers in your cocktail?

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Filed under Friends, Las Vegas, Nevada, Shopping, Travel, Vegas

Cocktail Recipe & Give-Away

Tommy BahamaDuring my most recent visit to Vegas, I stopped at the new Tommy Bahama Restaurant & Bar in Town Square. Their Blackberry Basil Smash was so delicious, I knew I had to recreate the recipe at home.
 
Ingredients
• 2-3 large, fresh blackberries
• 2 fresh basil leaves
• 3 slivers of fresh, peeled ginger
• 1 shot white rum
• 1 shot sweet and sour mix
• Sprite
 
Muddle blackberries, basil and ginger in mixing glass. Add rum and sweet & sour mix. Fill serving glass with ice. Shake cocktail. Strain into serving glass. Top with Sprite. Garnish with basil leaf & blackberry.
 

 
Leave a comment, and your name will be added to the drawing for a Tommy Bahama natural wooden muddler.
 
• Have you enjoyed a muddled drink?
• What store do you wish would open a restaurant?
• What will be your Summer 2010 drink?

 
Check out Tommy Bahamas Drink of the Month for more great recipes!

 
Give-Away Rules: Drawing will be held August 1, 2010. One entry per household. Comments accepted at Facebook, YouTube and WordPress. Two winners will be announced 8/1/2010.

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Filed under How To... VIDEOS, Las Vegas, Podcast, Tags, Games, Quizzes, Vegas

Vegas Day Trip

Just returned from a day trip to Vegas. I love it there!
 
First stop, in Henderson actually, was Trader Joe’s. I brought a cooler and ice packs for the frozen items such as the Japanese ice cream the kids are so fond of. I also picked up a bottle of the new Clementine Sparkling Juice. Two thumbs way up!
 
After filling the cooler half way and securing the non-perishables, I ventured over to the Mandalay Bay hotel & casino. It is the first resort as you enter the strip from the south end, and offers quick access to their parking facilities.
 
The restaurant formerly situated next to the Burger Bar has been replaced by the new Hussong’s Cantina. It being Cinco de Mayo, I was in the mood for a margarita and Mexican fare. Ok, I’m always in the mood for a margarita and Mexican fare.
 
Hussong’s was having “The Most Interesting Man” Look-Alike contest. Had I know, I would have tried to bring my husband. He has the beard & mustache!
Well, regardless, I made my way to the entrance and requested a table for one. I was given a nice little table off to the side, a basket of chips & salsas, the menu and time to review it.
 
Hussong’s offers an Original and a Traditional margarita. I honestly didn’t know the difference, but assumed the original would be loaded with alcohol. When my waitperson approached, she offered me advice on my cocktail selection as well as my lunch choice. The Original uses all fresh ingredients while the Traditional uses a mix. I opted for the Original (both cost $10/ea.) I was torn between the lobster tacos and the avocado shrimp salad, and my server raved about the salad, calling it one of her favorite dishes. I ordered the salad, then sat back, enjoyed my chips, salsa and cocktail while listening to the laughter of fellow diners.
 
Soon my meal was approaching… an entire avocado, breaded and deep fried, filled with cooked shrimp and served on a bed of lettuce. Interesting! Tasty. Not sure I would order it again. The batter was rather thick on the avocado, but not bad overall. I gave Hussong’s 4 out of 5 stars on Yelp.
 
After lunch, I went to see my stylist, Brooklyn at ARCs, also in the Mandalay Bay. She gave me a trim and brightened my color (i.e. covered my gray). Her lovely assistant, Little Kelly did an amazing job rinsing & washing my hair and massaging my head & shoulders.
 
On the way out of dodge, I swung by the Cheesecake Factory for a few slices for my family; original with strawberries, key lime, and red velvet. I can attest the key lime is fantastic!
 
To view highlights of the day, just push play.
 

 
• What is your favorite day trip destination?
• What do you do there?
• Do you Yelp?

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Filed under Las Vegas, Nevada, Podcast, Shopping, Vegas

A True Story of Perception


 
The setting: A chic, high-end designer boutique.
 
The atmosphere: Sleek, trendy and cool. Glossy black walls frame the colorful collection of clothing, heels, handbags and other accessories.
 
My Life: Unhappily married, no children, and a part-time job.
 
I stand and stare, never daring to enter. I admire the perfectly dressed, ebony mannequins. Footage of runway shows airs on the large screen t.v. just inside the window. I am completely mesmerized.
 
How am I perceived?
 
Shy, insecure, frightened, lonely.
 
My perception of this store is that it is off-limits and unattainable.
 

 
The Following Year
Same setting / Same Atmosphere
 
My Life:
New Husband, New Baby, New Responsibilities (running a business with my husband).
 
I have gained enough confidence to actually step foot inside this wondrous boutique! My heart races as I touch the clothing. What are these sizes? 42? 40? I don’t understand. No one approaches me. I’m here, yet invisible. The staff are indifferent as I depart.
 
How am I perceived?
 
Curious, bold, naive.
 
This visit changes my perception. I CAN enter, and I CAN touch.
 

 
2 Years Later
Same setting / Same Atmosphere

 
My Life:
Happily Married, 2nd Baby Arrives, Business is Booming.
 
I am now FULL of confidence. I’ve strolled in and out of designer boutiques throughout the city. During this particular visit, the added bonus is that my best friend is visiting. Arm in arm, we admire the latest collection. We stop in front of a particularly beautiful piece, the little black dress lined in silk animal print. Something happened this day that had never happened before. We were approached! Yes, Ricardo made his way over to see if we needed assistance. My size: 46 or 48, in stock just off the main floor. Knock me over with a feather! I AM TRYING ON THE LITTLE BLACK DRESS! The staff is no longer too busy or uninterested as they bring me shoes, purses and little jackets attempting to complete the look.
 
How am I perceived?
 
Emboldened, confident.

 
My perception of this store has now changed 180 degrees.
 
What changed? My perception of self.

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Filed under IMO, Las Vegas, Shopping, Vegas