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The restaurant formerly situated next to the Burger Bar has been replaced by the new Hussong’s Cantina.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?
Tag Archives: Las Vegas
Just returned from a day trip to Vegas. I love it there!
Maybe we shouldn’t be turning to Elvis for culinary inspiration. Regardless, The Cupcakery has transformed Elvis’ Bacon, Peanut Butter & Banana Sandwich into this Trip To Graceland cupcake. I’ll admit I was anxious to taste it.
I arrived an hour before closing, and bought one dozen cupcakes including the last 2 Elvi (plural of Elvis) available.
When I returned home with the goodies, my eldest daughter spotted an Elvis and called dibs. Her verdict: thumb up! Youngest daughter also took a bite earning Elvis his 2nd thumbs up. Hubby said he’d sample it in the morning with a side of eggs.
After seeming enamored with Elvis, the girls became bored and wandered off. I saw my chance to pounce!
• Bacon topping ~ crisp and smokey.
• Banana cream frosting ~ oh so sweet and banana-y!
• Chunky peanut butter cake ~ FAIL. No PB flavor. No chunks. Dense and dry, like cornbread.
I took a bite, wanting to try the combination of all 3 flavors. That didn’t help. The salty bacon and creamy banana trumped the weak peebee cake. I didn’t Love It Tender. I wished I had a Blue Hawaiian to wash it down. Anyone want a half-eaten cupcake? I was afraid of that. Return to Sender.
• Would you try the Elvis cupcake?
• How could this cupcake be improved?
• What other combinations would you like to see in a cupcake?
The Cupcakery has locations in Nevada and Texas.
My friend, Jim is blogging one photo per day. He was inspired by our friend, Amy’s World. They have both inspired me to start carrying my camera with me everywhere, and to snap at least one photo a day. Here is my first week.
Colorful Arizona Sunrise ~ May 30, 2009
Pearl swinging ~ May 31, 2009
Purple Paddle Cactus
Maverick Gas Station, Bullhead City AZ ~ June 1, 2009
Smith’s Grocery Store, Fort Mohave AZ ~ June 2, 2009
Best Mexican Food…
… in Hell. ~ June 3, 2009
Shading our yard ~ June 4, 2009
Leaving Las Vegas
Las Vegas Strip ~ June 5, 2009
• BLAST FROM THE PAST •
San Diego Zoo ~ June 30, 2008
Thanks for reading!
Wednesday afternoon my friend from Oregon, Joy, and I made our way to Vegas. She had booked our accommodations, keeping me in suspense for months. Finally she spilled the beans.
T R U M P • I N T E R N A T I O N A L • H O T E L
Trump is located on the north end of the strip, across from the Encore and the Wynn.
The non-gambling, non-smoking resort was very swank.
Kitchenette ~ Tub with view of the Strip
Now, I have to tell you that I did forget to pack 1 thing (as usual). This time it was my camera. I used my phone to take pics, but they aren’t the best.
We checked in, then sat in the lounge, sipping overpriced wine and beer.
Bar & Lounge
We entered a time warp as 3 hours passed quicker than you can bat an eye. When we noticed the time, we had 5 minutes to change clothes, freshen our make-up & hair, and catch a cab to Caesar’s.
Here is an event I was really anticipating! Dining at Mesa Grill, owned by Bobby Flay.
All the while pinching myself, I savored Green Pea + Green Chili Soup, Ancho Chili-Honey Glazed Salmon with Spicy Black Bean Sauce, and Roasted Corn with Smoked Chilis, Cotija Cheese + Lime.
Camera phone, don’t fail me now!!
Without a doubt, this was the most flavorful meal I’ve ever had. Really intense, delicious flavors.
Time continued to fly as we dashed outside to catch a cab to The Rio.
Penn & Teller
An hour before the show, there is a live jazz band playing. The audience is encouraged to take to the stage to examine a box and sign an envelope. When the show does start, Teller (the little guy) appears from the box! This show was FANTASTIC! I’d like to see it again, just to catch what I missed this time. Penn explains a few of the tricks by using clear cups and cellophane, but you’re still left scratching your head in amazement!
I wouldn’t recommend the show to young children because there’s a lot of blood and guts when they cut a woman in half.
After the show, Penn & Teller run down the aisles and into the lobby where they pose for pictures and sign autographs.
Teller is easy to approach, while Penn is lost in a sea of fans.
Normally I would break down this blog into Day 1, Day 2, etc., but on Day 2, Lady Luck coughed on us. Joy caught a cold.
Our one excursion together Thursday was to the Bellagio Cafe. Now while I usually rave about the Crab Benedict, this time that darned Lady Luck put a hair in my eggs!
Lady Luck needs a hair net!
Back at the Trump, Joy watched t.v. while sipping on $12.00 bottles of Dayquil and Nyquil. I walked across the street to the Fashion Show Mall to visit Nordstrom, Godiva, Forever21 and Dillards. Hey, if I can’t shop, I’m not living up to my name!
Day 3, we had the breakfast at the Wynn.
The Buffet @ The Wynn
The surroundings are bright and whimsical, and the large selection of food is delicious. I was pleasantly surprised to see that pizza is included as a breakfast item! There is plenty of fruit, pancakes, french toast, bagels and the like for $18.95 per person. It’s a bit steep for a Vegas buffet, and if you haven’t tried the Rio’s buffet, I’d recommend it over the Wynn’s.
I took Joy to the airport, gave her a hug and some air kisses, and sent her on her way. It’s too bad her souvenir was a Vegas virus!
Thanks for reading! It’s good to be home.
I scooted into Vegas yesterday for hair and lunch. On the way from the salon to the restaurant inside of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, I noticed their new wall of body parts.
Some interesting pictures get taken here.
Anyone want to help me molest the wall?
Too Hot Tamales, Mary Sue Millikan and Susan Feniger, of Food Network fame, opened a Border Grill in the Mandalay Bay. I have not seen their show, but I was craving Mexican food. The special of the day was duck tacos with mango salsa.
The blend of smoky duck with the sweetness of the salsa was a taste-bud explosion! I was savoring every bite, and washing it down with pomegranate lemonade. Polishing off 2 tacos, I asked for a box for the remaining one.
This morning, I offered said taco to Tom for breakfast. He took a big bite, and promptly pulled 2 duck rib bones out of his mouth! I couldn’t believe my eyes. I quickly completed the restaurant questionnaire, taped the bones inside, included a copy of my receipt, and will mail it on Monday. We’ll see what comes of it.
Thanks for reading!
Update: I received a coupon for free dessert, and I did molest the wall.
Today at the Dollar Tree store, I saw a book titled, 101 Ways to Decorate with Candles. Really? You’d think there’d just be one way.
I was curious about the other 100 ways, so I glanced though it.
3. Put candle on wall sconce. Light.
I’m sensing a pattern. Even at a dollar, I don’t think its a bargain.
Who is going to rise to the celebrity status of Elvis Presley? Who will be impersonated to marry couples in Las Vegas? Whose house will be opened to the public as a museum? I’m guessing Michael Jackson or Obama. What’s your guess?
I now pronounce you husband and wife!
Facebook is an interesting sight. In the beginning, when you have no friends, it’s up to you and your memory to seek them out. High school friends, former co-workers, past loves. Type in their name, and your prize is a miniature photo. You have no access to their profile, but you can view their friends. Using this strategy, I found a friend from 20 years ago. In his group of friends, I found my first husband. Clicking on his friends, I found his sister and his now-grown niece. A circle of friends from my past had been reduced to thumbnails. I was glad for the chance to view them again.
On a whim, I sent a friend request to the first friend. Even after all of these years, he remembered me. His image in my mind had been frozen as that of a young, 20-something man with black hair, beard and mustache. To see his current photo was intoxicating, viewing the mature, clean-shaven man he had become.
He encouraged me to send a friend request to my former husband. I was nervous, to put it mildly. When last we spoke, although I cannot remember the exact moment or the exact words, I’m sure we were arguing over furniture, debts, our cat, our divorce, our decisions. It was a bleak period. What good could come from saying hello, I’m here? But I took a deep breath, and did just that.
Almost immediately he replied. A veil was lifted. The gloom of my memories was scattered by positivity and love. He was thrilled to hear from me, and confided that he still spoke fondly of me with his father who had always enjoyed my company. His instant enthusiasm calmed my fears, and made me question what my perception was of our *ending*. Had a friendship been pushed aside all of these years? I don’t know. I don’t have the answers.
So that, more or less, is where I have been lately. Delving into the past to see what I can see.
For the past 3 years, we’ve taken the kids in search of snow. A few weeks ago, we returned to our 2007 snowy destination, Mt. Charleston, Nevada. Mt. Charleston is 35 miles northwest of the Las Vegas strip, and about 142 miles from our home in Arizona.
Las Vegas was hit with 8″ of snow on December 17th, so we found plenty of snow to play in.
Tom and Pearl wasted no time building a snowman.
He looks like Caesar.
Did you notice Tom’s zebra hat? It’s actually Natalie’s, but she shares.
I tossed a few snowballs at Tom. He managed to catch them, return fire, and snap pictures. Damned multi-tasker!
The girls even managed to do a little bit of sledding.
It was a beautiful day! Soon, the sun began to hide behind the trees, and the lower temps were fast approaching. We drove down to our hotel and checked in.
Mt. Charleston Hotel
The Hotel was still decorated for Christmas.
We rented a couple of movies from the front desk.
True, these are 2 movies I wouldn’t normally rent, but Francis the Talking Mule was very helpful at West Point, and Michael J. Fox got the girl… and the money. Ooops, spoiler alert!
Last time, we ate breakfast at the Mt. Charleston Ski Resort. Beautiful views, but not a good meal. This time, we were able to find the Mt. Charleston Lodge! Beautiful views PLUS good food!
What’s with Pearl’s expression?!
Natalie with a red bump on her forehead from falling out of the sled.
Pearly with her big breakfast!
Tom tried his hand at video poker, but didn’t get lucky.
Get me a drink while you’re over there.
The Lodge has cabins for rent, but none have been available when it dawns on us to call.
It sure is picturesque!
Thank you for reading this gigantic photo blog!
Good morning! Yesterday I drove to Vegas to get my hair done and to Christmas shop.
New doo. Sorry for the serious bed-head.
At the House of Blues, I found the coolest gifts for my best friend, Joy, and her husband Cimber. They don’t read my blog, so it’s safe to post a couple pics here without ruining the surprise.
Blues Brothers bowling shirt and Day of the Dead cross.
I think Cimber wears bowling shirts 24/7, and Joy is really into skulls and crosses.
At Nordstrom, I stopped by the Lancome counter to pick up some makeup remover. While there, I asked if they had any rollerball lipgloss. Reminds me of my youth. Do you remember those flavored rollerball lipglosses? Well, they’re back… but all sold out. They did have the regular old wand lipgloss, and the colors are fantastic, so I bought one.
Lancome’s Color Fever Gloss in Aflame
I was also low on mascara, so I asked about that. The lady said, Sit down. I want to put some on you. So I sat down. Do you know what she produced? The vibrating mascara! She pushed the button, and began massaging my lashes. It felt oddly good, until she poked me in the eye! I kid you not! You all warned me it was an accident waiting to happen, and it sure as hell was! Ok, so after cleaning up the tears and smudges, I had to admit, my lashes looked MUCH longer! So, I actually bought the mascara. It does have a dual purpose. It’s a mascara, and a vibrator that leaves your pubes looking luxurious. Har har har!
When the lady poked me in the eye and apologized, I said, It’s ok. Why do we say it’s ok when it really isn’t? If she had warned me beforehand, I’m going to gouge your eye out with this vibrating applicator. Are you alright with that? I’d certainly have said, No. Are you out of your mind?
Let me get some more coffee in me. Have an awesome Saturday!