6/30/2015

Our Trip To Vegas

Josh and I had a blast in Las Vegas. The only bummer is that neither one of us remembered to charge and wear our Fitbits so we couldn't track how much we walked, but I can guarantee it was a whole lot.

We flew from Charlotte to Las Vegas via US Air and has fantastic flights to and from Vegas. The landing on both flights was the best I've ever experienced, and take off both times was relatively smooth as well. We booked everything for our trip via Expedia and have nothing but great reviews. We have never planned a big trip like this before, that included flying so naturally I was a little nervous. We found Expedia to be easy to use and navigate and got a great price on the trip. We booked a shuttle to pick us up from the airport when we got to Vegas and take us to our hotel, then it picked us up at our hotel and brought us to the airport on our last day. Our tickets told us exactly what gate to go to and the shuttle was waiting for us as we stepped off the plane. We checked in at the ticket booth and they went ahead and gave us our tickets for the shuttle back on our last day, we just had to call 24 hours before we were leaving to arrange our pick up time. 

We stayed at The Venetian and have nothing but wonderful things to say about the resort. Our room was phenomenal. The bed was out of this world comfortable, we had a separate living space and the bathroom...oh the bathroom. I had a hard time leaving that beautiful space.

Bed Chamber
Living Room
Bathroom
via

The Venetian is massive, as are all of the hotels in Vegas, and there were so many choices for dining and shopping. They had upscale restaurants as well as things like Subway and Chipotle, which we appreciated for lunch time.



When we first arrived, got settled and finally had lunch, we went exploring and tried to get our barrings around The Venetian. We only got turned around...a...handful of times...ha! We were particular intrigued by the gondolas going by...inside the hotel! I mean, they did a great job at making you feel like you were actually vacationing in Italy. The ceilings are painted like the sky and when we first walked under them, we both looked at each other like "are we outside?!". Our first night there we accidentally took a little cat nap in the room, then ventured out for dinner and to walk the strip a bit. We got awesome views of the Bellagio fountain, what a sight to see. That night we ate a place called the Public House  which was an upscale burger place and we both got a traditional burger with fries. It was delicious! But between being past starvation and so tired, neither of us could finish our meals.




Our second day in Vegas we headed to the pool in the morning before it got too hot...except this is the desert and it's always too hot. We lasted a solid 45 minutes before we just couldn't bare baking in the sun any longer. Y'all, it is HOT out there. Humidity in SC is terrible, but that dry heat out there just about put a hurting on me. But it's interesting because you don't sweat, basically because as soon as you walk outside any moisture in your body is immediately zapped lol. After our mini session at the pool we started at one end of the strip and walked through every hotel, all the way to the other end. We walked for.ev.er. But it was so worth it to see each hotel in all its glory. Each one was decorated so magnificently and had things like aquariums and conservatory's. We also discovered the monorail system while we were trekking and certainly took advantage of it on our way back to our hotel.



The whole reason we planned a trip to Vegas was to see Brooks & Dunn and Reba in concert. They were incredible. So much so that Josh asked if we could try and snag concert tickets for another night so that we could see them twice, ha! They played at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace and because it is set up more as a theater, the concert had a very intimate feel. I could have sat in there all night and listened to them sing. Now that we're back home, we've basically listened to nothing but Brooks & Dunn ;) Before the concert we had dinner at the Eiffel Tower Restaurant, which came highly recommended by a nice gentlemen that sat beside Josh on the plane ride to Vegas. We had a gorgeous view of the Bellagio and the fountains, and dinner was divine. I had a chicken dish and Josh had pork chops and we both equally loved our meals. They even bring out a variety of tiny sweets to snack on when they bring your check. That definitely hit the spot with my sweets lovin' heart.









On our last full day of vacation we booked a trip to California for the day! While it was one heck of a long day, Josh and I both decided that it was worth it. We were in a bus a total of 12 hours BUT the views we were able to take in were stunning. Watching the sun come up and go down while driving through the windy desert roads filled with gorgeous mountains on each side, beautiful! We booked our tour through Expedia and it was with Adventure Photo Tours. Our tour guides name was Kathleen and she was very nice and accommodating. We had plenty of stops for restroom and snack breaks and the bus was stocked with tons of cold water and snacks. We were also provided with breakfast and lunch on the tour. We drove through Los Angeles then went to Santa Monica beach. We explored the beach for about an hour and fifteen minutes, then we headed to Beverly Hills and rode down Rodeo drive. Our last stop was Hollywood and we spent about an hour and a half along the walk of stars, the Chinese Theater, Dolby Theater, among many other sites. After seeing all the traffic in LA, I am certainly glad we took a trip where someone else was responsible for the driving, because not to drop any names *ahem Joshua* would have likely lost his mind driving in all of that had we been on our own. There were 14 of us on the tour and besides one couple that couldn't seem to show up to anything on time, everyone was extremely nice and very enjoyable to spend the day with. I read through a ton of reviews on TripAdvisor about this tour and there were only positive reviews!
 

We flew home on Friday, but our flight wasn't until 2. So that morning we spent time wandering through The Venetian and FINALLY hit up a casino. That's right, we didn't gamble the whole time, until the last morning. While most people are sipping on alcohol beverages while sitting in the casino, I had a fresh cup of coffee, ha! We played $1 on a penny slot, won $20.20 and called it good. We were mighty proud taking our cash-out ticket to the register ;) Our shuttle picked us up outside of the hotel 2 hours before our flight took off and took us to the airport where we boarded the plane home ,and once we walked through the door of our house we loved on Murphy as if we hadn't seen him in years. We're dramatic ;)

We truly had an awesome time in Vegas and I don't think either of us would mind visiting again in the future!

6/12/2015

What I Gave for Mothers Day

When I asked my mom if she had any thing in mind she wanted for Mothers Day this year she replied with "a photoshoot!". She has been wanting pictures taken of me, her and my granny. The weekend after Mothers Day, the photography duo Landon Jacob, held mini sessions in town. I quickly shot Jordan and email and scheduled our appointment. Landon and Jordan do such beautiful work, and because I knew we'd be holding on to these photos for years and years to come, I wanted great quality. A mini session was just the right amount of time, because if you know my granny, you know she is not a huge fan of having her picture taken and I can pretty much bet she wouldn't have made it past 30 minutes :)

When we got these back, all three of us were over the moon with how they turned out. We could not have been more pleased. Landon and Jordan, thank you so much for making us feel comfortable in front of the camera and capturing photos that we will treasure for a life time!


Have a great weekend! Josh and I will be spending ours preparing for our trip to Vegas next week! 

6/10/2015

Wonderful News Wednesday



I'm an avid reader and watcher of the news. I watch it in the mornings while I'm getting ready, in the afternoons when I get home from work and follow many news channels on twitter that I scroll through during the day. That being said, I often fall into the trap of being bogged down by the endless amount of bad and negative stories. They weigh on my mind and sometimes affect my mood, when I think of all the hate and bad things going on in the world around. 

On the flip side, my favorite part of watching and reading the news are the heart warming and uplifting stories. Below I've shared a few fantastic news stories with you and hope that they brighten your day and bring you a smile. Here's to conquering Wednesday! 


Aunt learns sister is having twins

Oh and The Cavs won last night, so that is very happy news :)

6/03/2015

Front & Back Porch Designs


Outdoor spaces are one of my favorite parts of any house. I've mentioned it before, but I view front and especially back porches, as an extension of the eating and living area of the house. I have gotten so much joy out of decorating our front stoop and back deck. My hope is to one day have a beautiful, sprawling front porch and a large screened in porch. Above are stunning images I have pinned on my outdoor Pinterest board. The southern feel of these spaces just oozes off the screen and has me seeing all the heart eye emoji's. 

When you walk into our living room at home, it's no secret that I'm a big fan of blues and greens. I think these colors transition so well inside and outside of a house. A beautiful blue and white pattern says traditional south to me, and that's one of my favorite things. I'm also loving each of the lighting fixtures above, you can never go wrong with gorgeous lanterns or fans. Do you have outdoor living spaces at your house? 

6/02/2015

Banana Republic Factory Store


When Mom and I went on our annuals girls trip to Charleston to do our Memorial Day shopping, I think we found the best deals and items at the Banana Republic outlet. They had 50% off the entire store and  had some great pieces for work and leisure! These are a few of the items I came home with, and will hopefully be debuting in future posts. I've already worn that white top 3 times, I just can't help myself. I'm in love with the cut outs. The white jeans are a great fit and are such a soft material. The pink skirt is a total win in my book, I've been on the hunt for one like it for so long and BR had just the right color and length. The maxi dress I've already worn to work, as well as the orange skirt and blush pop over. I also got this top which I'm in love with! I should also note I got Josh two suits retailing over $600 for just over $160. You really can't beat the deals on Memorial Day Weekend.

I'm not sure why, but I didn't know that you could shop the BR Factory Store online. I think I hear angels singing.

Have a great Tuesday! 

6/01/2015

Planning our 2nd Anniversary Trip


Folly Beach Pier, SC (clouds sunrise+sunset Fall+colors Spring Summer beach from+the+sky sky tropical water waves ). Photo by dobberjean
via
It is wild to me that Josh and I are planning our trip to celebrate our 2nd wedding anniversary. I know I'm a broken record, but time really does fly. 

We had  briefly discussed what we wanted to do for our anniversary, but hadn't decided on anything quite yet when I saw Christina's recap of her recent stay at Folly Beach. I did a little researching and Christina posted a link to the condo that they stayed in, right on the beach! I ran the idea to go to Folly  for our anniversary by Josh...and the minute I said that condo was pet friendly, he was sold. Ha! We have been itching to take Murphy to the beach and going to Folly (an easy hour and fifteen minute drive for us) and staying right on the beach sounded like a great idea. We went back and forth between staying in a first floor condo and a third floor one. I was really sold on the first floor because I wanted to feel like I was sitting right on the beach from our patio, but the third floor was decorated nicer and just had an all over better feel. Josh had previously mentioned that he'd like to go to High Cotton (a fantastic restaurant that we ate at the weekend we got engaged in Greenville) at some point to celebrate our anniversary, and would't you know, Charleston has a High Cotton. Win-win.

We sent in our paperwork and just like that, our 2nd anniversary trip is booked! We decided to go the first weekend in October, rather than our exact anniversary, one because the actual day (September 21st) is a Monday and because dogs can go on the beach at any time during the day starting October 1st, rather than before 10 am and after 6 pm during the summer months.

I am so excited to take this trip to celebrate our wedding anniversary and to get to take Murphy to the beach! Now that our trip is booked, I've got to start wracking my brain for gift ideas. The traditional second anniversary gift is cotton. I've got quite a bit of thinking to do to land on what I want to give Josh!

Also, it's embarrassing how excited we are to take Murphy to the beach for the first time...we may or may not have already started a packing list, just for him! We sure do love that puppy dog.

Speaking of trips, we're sixteen days away from our trip to Las Vegas and Josh's first flight...he is freaking out. Send him extra prayers and happy thoughts if you think about it :)