Wednesday, June 20, 2018

I'm Baaaack ~

 
It was WONDERFUL to get away, but as always, great to be back home.  We had a terrific Las Vegas vacation.  Jake had the time of his life (including his first ride in a jet) and it was good to see my son.  We were so busy, I need a vacation from my vacation. 

Unfortunately my son Bill could not get away from work, so a couple days Jake and I just hung around his apartment and went to the pool. 


We made up for it in the evening.  The first evening we headed to the Stratosphere, a unique fixture in the Vegas skyline, the 1,149 foot tall Vegas resort Tower is the tallest freestanding observation tower in the United States. 
 
 

There are 3 rides at the top.  We rode two of them.  Let me tell you, the X-Scream was one of the scariest things I've ever done.  Check it out.

 
We also did the tower ride.  Seats were on all four sides.

 
And then it shot you up this tower.  Scary, but nothing like the X-Scream.


From there we went "downtown" to Fremont Street.  Here's Jake enjoying the light show.

 
We topped the evening off with a trip to In-N-Out Burger.  Jake had to see if he liked it better than 5 Guys.  He liked it better, but I vote for 5 Guys :)
 
 
I drove my son to work the second day so Jake and I could go to Hoover Dam.  It was my first time driving an extended cab Dodge Ram.  I have never driven anything so big and it was almost as scary as the X-Scream :)
 
The plaque states:  "A modern civil engineering wonder of the United States.  One of seven selected by the American Society of Civil Engineers.  1955"  To the left is Nevada and to the right is Arizona. 

 

 
Lake Mead.  The white area surrounding the lake used to be under water.  It was down 150' (yes feet) because of the drought.

 
Hoover Dam
 

Art Deco influence


 
I had not heard of the show, La Reve (The Dream) but I believe I read it has been the #1 show in Las Vegas for 8 years.  Think of it as a Cirque du Soleil type show performed over and in a round pool.  (Of course videos can be found on You Tube.)  One of my son's friends is a rigger for the show and his wife Kelly is one of the performers.  She was able to get us complimentary tickets.  This was definitely the highlight of my trip.  There are 79 cast members from all over the world and many dozens of behind the scenes personnel including more than 2 dozen divers who help the cast members under water. 
 

This was the coolest part of the show and I found out afterward that Kelly was one of the performers and most likely the one hanging by her arm.


 
 

 
I have much more to bore you with in another post or two.
 
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)
Lauren

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

My Bags Aren't Packed ~ but I'm Ready to Go!


Greetings :)

Today is the day.  Grandson Jake, four pumpkin rolls and I are heading west to Las Vegas.  Thankfully we don't need to leave for the airport until 5:30 pm because I've waited until the last minute to pack.  Some things never change.

I snagged a group picture from Facebook of all of us that visited Sister Mary St. Patrick (nka Sister Marian Coughlin) and thought I would share.


I know some of you will find this hard to believe, but I really am a homebody and these back to back trips are about killing me.  Knowing this trip is to visit my #1 bad boy makes it all worthwhile.  I spoke with him the other night and he, too, is excited about our visit.

I figured I'd better post the last of the California pictures :)  I just have to share the flowers.  They were all so gorgeous and I've never seen so many roses.  They must love the weather there.  Well, in going through my pictures I realize I didn't take as many as I thought I did, but believe me, the roses were just wonderful.
 




 
I've never seen these before.  They had to be at least 10-12 feet tall.
 
Growing wild

Next to a house


The upper portion was covered in purple flowers
 
 
In the ladies room at the winery.  Just beautiful.
 
 
That's all folks.  Will tell you all about my trip upon my return.
 
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)
Lauren

Monday, June 11, 2018

Bus Trip ~

 
I am not a bus trip person.  I went on one about 20 years ago to Toronto to see Phantom of the Opera and Miss Saigon.  After that trip, I decided if I was going anywhere, it would not be by bus.  Well . . . never say never. 
 
A little background.  I finished 8th grade in 1966.  Catholic school for 8 years.  There were 50 of us in the 8th grade class, and mind you, no teacher's aid, no other teacher (music, art, etc) whatsoever.  My second and eighth grade teacher was a Sisters of Notre Dame nun, Sister Mary Saint Patrick.  She has since taken her maiden name and is now Sister Marian Coughlin.  A few of my former classmates got together to reminisce and discovered that Sister was still alive, living in the Notre Dame facility about an hour and a half from here and arranged a trip.  Surprisingly only one person from our class is deceased.  I believe 15 of us went to visit her yesterday.  I'd say that was a pretty good percentage, and there were three others who at the last minute could not make it.  We had heard that sister was very excited that we were coming.  She was waiting for us at the door when we arrived :)
 
The day was started by going to Mass.  Sister even did one of the readings.

 
She is just a tiny little thing.  We all remembered her as being much taller . . . or was it because we were just much shorter?
 
 

Sister is turning 90 in July and also celebrating her 70th year as a nun.  Her mind is still sharp as a tack and she remembered all of us.

 
This is one of our classmates from school, Caroline.  In 1966, at the age of 14, she went to the convent and has been a nun ever since.  She is now known as Sister Valerie, though we still called her Caroline (with her blessing).


Even though Sister uses a walker, she came to the bus to wish us a final farewell.  A few tears were seen streaming down her face.  What a heartwarming visit.


Off to bake pumpkin rolls.  Not one of my favorite things to do, but grandson Jake and I are leaving Wednesday evening to visit my son Bill in Las Vegas.  I'm not sure which Bill is looking forward to more, seeing me or getting pumpkin roll :)
 
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)
Lauren

Friday, June 8, 2018

Antique Finds ~

 
I did not expect to bring any antiques home from California, but found a few special treasures at prices I was willing to pay :)
 
It is so hard to get a picture without the glare of the glass.  The reflection to the bottom right is my arms and camera.  Though faded, about 80% of the sampler is in pretty good shape.  The bottom not so much, but for the price, I could not pass her up.


 
I am not wild about how it is framed, but you can see that it has been in this frame for a long time.

 
Circa 1860-1870 English toothpaste pot.  The first one in my small collection that is colored.  Quite a few chips but I am no purist.  It's sitting on a piece of French linen also purchased in California.

 
Some of you may remember my obsession with stone fruit.  You can read about it here.  I haven't added to my collection in a few years, but was so excited to find the half peach and half apple.  I never thought I'd ever own any half fruit.  I thought it was a good deal, but not as good as the deal Julie got in Arizona a couple years back.  (Almost free at a thrift store!)




Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)
Lauren

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Home Sweet Home ~


Vacation was great fun, but it's always good to get back home.  We headed to Cotati, California to visit DSO's son and daughter-in-law.  Cotati is north of San Francisco so away from some of the craziness, but not the crazy cost of living.  I thought the prices of just about everything was insane.  I don't know how people afford to live there.
 
One day we headed further north to Mendocino.  What a quaint little town.  A definite tourist destination. 

 
 
 
Beautiful views of the Pacific coast.



Huge mounds of driftwood.


 
Hard to see but flowers blooming over the edge.

 
Fun fountain at Navarro Vineyards in Philo, CA.


The next day we headed in to San Francisco on the ferry.


 
It's always a treat to ride the cable car :)

 
My favorite spot ~ hanging on the outside for the ride.


 
Now I really expected to something like this in San Francisco, not Petaluma.  This guy was dancing outside the ice cream shop.  (The guy on the left, not DSO . . . lol.)


Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)
Lauren