Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Las Vegas - Day 2

If you haven't read Day 1 of our trip, make sure to go back and check it out here!

Day 1 was so full of getting to Vegas and the Backstreet concert, that we were very intentional in planning nothing for Day 2.  The only plans we had were to walk all over the strip and check everything out!  Because of the time difference and staying up so late the night before, I was positive that both of us would sleep in pretty late.  Plus, we're tired moms with no kids around - we should sleep late!  Unfortunately, my body was up by 7 am Vegas time!  Ugh!  The plus side was I got to just lay in bed and be lazy for a little while before we started our day.

Once we got up and got moving, we headed next door to our hotel to a new(ish) shopping center.  It was only like 8:30 am, so nothing was open, but we probably wouldn't have been doing much shopping there anyway - haha.  All of the stores were places like Dolche and Gabbana, Dior, Hermes, etc.  Not exactly what we're used to!  It sure was a beautiful place to walk around though!  

One thing we didn't realize before we came was that it was the Chinese New Year - so everything was decorated (and there were a ton of Asian people everywhere).  All of the decorations everywhere were so so beautiful!

The first place we came to when we left the shopping center was New York, and hands down it was my favorite place on the strip!  My dad is from NY, and I've been a few times before (and have plans to go with some friends this year!), and it's just a city that has my heart.  So while it wasn't the real thing, I absolutely loved this section.  

First up was the Brooklyn Bridge.  ;)

This was the inside of the New York hotel.  I absolutely loved it.  If I could have picked where we stayed, this would have been it!  It just looks so awesome and there is so much attention to detail.  Plus I was already loving Vegas's obsession with making the inside of places look like the outside.

There was a little crepe stand in the hotel, so we shared a crepe and sat by a parking meter - haha.

They also had a huge Hershey's store in the hotel.  Matt is obsessed with Reese's, so I sent this picture to him (and a Reese's tshirt may have made it home in my bag for him).

Next we found Lady Liberty - and I love that you can see the roller coaster behind her!

Beautiful weather, vacation, and my best friend - we both were as happy as can be!

While we didn't go inside of every hotel, we did try to hit the highlights and see most of them.  Most disappointing to me?  The Excalibur (I didn't even take any pictures there - it felt like a cheap, nasty Disney to me - haha) and the Luxor.  The first thing that disappointed me about the Luxor was how dirty it was!  I mean, duh, I know we're in the desert.  But every picture you see of it just has it gleaming and clean!  So first impressions were a little bit of a let down.

The decorations going inside were pretty cool though!

The inside was pretty neat, too, but it made me feel claustrophobic.  We tried to figure out how the elevators worked while we were in there - and we had to google it later to see if we were right.  We were!  They move diagonally!

The Luxor had two exhibits going on inside: Titanic and Bodies.  We ended up getting a combo ticket and doing both.  They wouldn't let us take any pictures inside (they literally made us turn our phones off), so we have no pictures to show.  The Titanic exhibit was amazing.  We spent so long in there looking at everything and reading all we could.  They had a lot of actual artifacts recovered from the wreck, replicas of places like the main staircase, passenger rooms, and an outside deck, and so so much information.  They even had a huge piece of the outside of the ship called "The Big Piece" that is literally just a huge piece of the ship - the largest intact piece ever recovered.  It weighed 15 tons!  When we went in, they gave us a card with passenger information, and we were supposed to be that passenger while we walked through.  At the end, we could look ourselves up and see if we lived or died.  Laura and I both were women from first class, and we both lived!

After Titanic, we went to the Bodies.  I was really excited about this one, but ended up not liking it very much.  It did have a pretty weird smell in the exhibit (I'm sure it's the chemicals or something to keep all of the bodies and organs preserved).  I did like seeing all of the bodies and organs, but I wasn't expecting the exhibit to be sooo medical.  I probably should have been prepared for that, but it was just so much information about diseases and prevention, and just not as "entertaining" as I expected - haha.  And, yes, we did go into the "baby room".  As someone who has miscarried, I didn't know how I would feel (and was prepared to just walk out if I got upset).  Honestly, to me, it was beautiful to see how God designed our bodies to hold babies from a "real life" perspective.  And while I could see how the fetuses could upset people, I was amazed at getting to see all of the stages as they really look - not just pictures in a book or drawings.  The whole exhibit definitely gave me a greater respect for the human body and how it was created!

After the Luxor, we were kind of made it to one "end" of the strip (our hotel was located pretty smack in the middle), so we crossed over to the other side of the street to see the rest of it.

Seeing NY from a different point of view!

I was craving more "healthy" food for lunch, so we stopped in the mall at Planet Hollywood because I saw a Jamba Juice there the night before, and I wanted an Acai Bowl.  It did not disappoint!  It was exactly what I needed!

After lunch, we walked through Paris (and saw the Arc de Triomphe - this one was a 2/3 size replica).

We made it to The Venetian!  We spent a good bit of time here because it was so so big and so so beautiful!  They have this canal that runs through both the outside and inside of the hotel, and you can take a gondola ride around the whole thing (we didn't).

Stopping inside to listen to the Gondola drivers sing!

We found this really cute little bakery that sold macarons, so we stopped to rest for a bit and eat a snack.

I seriously spent a long time just listening to the singing and watching the boats go by!  The inside of this hotel was just absolutely stunning!

They had this bakery inside that sold these huge donuts.  I kid you not, they were like the size of my face!  We just looked from the outside because I didn't even want to be tempted by all the yumminess in there!

After the Venetian, we made it to the Bellagio.  The inside was so pretty with all of the Chinese decorations.

We decided if we were in Vegas, in the Bellagio, we had to at least gamble a little (straight Oceans 11 style).

Playing slots in Vegas!

We both started with $5 (and we both had absolutely no idea what we were doing).  You don't actually play with money - I mean - you do, but you don't.  You put money in, but all it gives you back is a voucher.  So I put $5, and when I got up to $6.75, I "cashed out" and got my voucher.  So, for about 20 minutes, I was winning money in Vegas!

We went to another machine, and I went from $6.75 to $8.75!

Laura started with $5, lost some, but then made back up to her original $5!  And that's where we should have quit while we were ahead because we kept playing and both lost everything - haha.  (But we both decided losing $10 was worth it to say we gambled in the Bellagio).

This was how the check-in desk was decorated!

The Bellagio was right next to our hotel, so we went back to our room to rest for a little while because we had done a lot of walking.  Laura made us reservations for an Italian restaurant inside of the Venetian, so we headed back a few hours later.  This time, we took a taxi to save ourselves some walking!

Ready for a fancy dinner with my sister - haha.  This turned out to be such a bust.  We ordered an appetizer - gross.  We both ordered an entree - gross.  I ate so little of my food that the waiter took it off of our bill without even saying anything (which was so nice).  Dinner was beautiful, but not tasty!

Back at our hotel after dinner - and still hungry- haha.  They had a sweets shop at the hotel, so I told Laura I would buy us a dessert since dinner was such a bust....

And I spent eight stupid dollars on a milkshake that was disgusting!  They didn't have many flavors to choose from (and they all were weird), so I got "cereal milk".  Not knowing that the cereal was Corn Flakes.  Not Frosted Flakes.  Who wants a milkshake that tastes like Corn Flake milk??  No one!  It's gross!

Laura got this ginormous piece of cake...and guess what?  Also gross.  Food was just not in our cards this day - haha.  Dinner and dessert both left a lot to be desired!

Look at our walking for the day - 10.21 miles!

Here's a little video all about Day 2!

We decided it was appropriate to end the night cuddled in bed (haha) watching Oceans 11.  ;)

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