Ok, this is going to be a speed round, to get you caught up with the end of Vegas and the beginning of the last chapter of our trip. But before I do that, I wanted to say two things:
1. Thank you so much for all the comments!! We LOVE reading them…and they are just the encouragement we need during these stressful days! ❤ We wish we could respond to every single one, but we are struggling just to find wifi to do each post. Eek!
2. We wanted to say a special hello to Uncle Bill who is reading along from Florida! We love you! xo
When we were driving to the Hoover Dam on Thursday, we passed a church along the highway that caught my eye. We looked it up online and decided to try it out. If last week’s church was BIG like Texas…this one was BRIGHT like Vegas!!! 😉
We know high energy music churches like this exist, but we’ve never been to one. It may be tempting to think it’s all show, but the songs and message were so heartfelt and rich in the hope and love of Jesus.
Then we got a HUGE laugh right before the pastor came on stage and they put up the sermon series slide:
What are the chances?!?
After the service, we walked around for awhile to check things out. We had some neat conversations with some of the volunteers. Their mission and heart for the larger Vegas community is huge! It was beautiful to hear about their recovery programs and their welcoming atmosphere for what they are trying to do. Their church motto is: It’s ok not to be ok!
Love that! And even though MANY tourists come through on the weekends (like us) they never made us feel like we were any less important. We were greeted with such warmth and love. It was a really nice experience.
Since the church was a little out of town, we thought we should take advantage of a nearby laundromat – since there was nothing like that near our hotel. We hadn’t done laundry since Joey’s!
Talk about adventure! The boys were troopers – helping at times and playing while they waited. They even gave me a back massage while I was working on the blog! ❤
(Shout out to Station 44!!)
And yes, they had free wifi!! Haha! This place was awesome…I mean, they even had a Keurig!
In the same shopping center, there were some odd looking stores…including one that we thought was a smoke shop. But it was actually Sin City Smokers – a pit beef place! Yeeesssss! We were quite hungry, by now, and this was a welcome sight! Everything was DELICIOUS!! Texas Toast grilled cheese, corn dogs and tots, and the pulled pork, brisket, and fries – oh my!
It was a great atmosphere too.
“Praise the Lard” – indeed. 😉
After returning to the hotel, it was time to keep sewing up loose ends for our departure. Joe was able to finalize the details for pick up and drop off of the new RV from Cruise America. Since it wouldn’t be ready until Wednesday (in Arizona), that meant we needed to extend our stay at the hotel and also extend the rental car (in New Mexico). Whew! Easier said than done, but we succeeded!
The previous Tuesday, we were on a sprint to get to Vegas, so we had to drive right passed the Grand Canyon, instead of stopping on the way – which was our original plan. 😦 So we decided to stop there on the way to Mesa, AZ for the RV pick up. This meant we would be checking out of Vegas on Tuesday morning.
We took a little down time after all the phone calls, but then were ready for some sightseeing. We freshened up and set out to see the world famous Venetian Hotel. It. was. gorgeous!! Every detail is cared for. There are amazing shops and restaurants, as well as live entertainment…and yes…Gondola rides!!!
Oh yes we did!
Our driver’s name was Peppi and he was legit! He sang to us and was really sweet to the boys. And his sister lives in Ellicott City, Maryland. How cool?! We couldn’t help but sing along…and he offered Joe a job by the time we got back to the dock! Ha! 😉
We made one last stop on our way back to our hotel. This was our second attempt…as our first attempt was cancelled due to high winds a few nights before. Our Uber driver dropped us off in front of the Bellagio hotel for the fountain show. We had heard about this many times…but like everything else, it was something to behold in person! Just beautiful!
Another long, but wonderful day. Our heads felt good hitting the pillow…and we were looking forward to soaking up our last day in Vegas.
We knew there would be a lot to think about…packing up in the hotel room and making arrangements to leave early the next morning. But we didn’t want the day to be consumed by it.
My parents suggested a drive through a national park, about 30 minutes out of town. It was a GREAT choice. We got to see some amazing things…with the option of staying in the car! It was 110 that day. Yikes!
The park is called Red Rock Canyon. It’s a national conservation area, located up against the Nevada mountains. And these red rocks are just tucked right in there!
We had to get out and hike, at least a little. But they built a beautiful car path through the entire park. It was just perfect.
After stopping for dinner, we went back to the hotel to get a little work done. There was only one more hotel that Joe and I wanted to squeeze in before we left. My parents offered to put the boys to bed, so we could run over for an hour or so.
As we were walking our to meet our Uber driver, Joe got this notification:
Not the car I imagined him driving!
But, seriously, he was such a nice guy, and we were at the hotel in no time. Joe gave Jesus five stars, obvs.
The inside was so interesting and creative, just like the others. And yes, they even had someone playing Billy Joel in one of the bars. 😉
But wait, there’s more…
How could we pass this up???
We didn’t come out ahead, after this one, but we sure had a fun time playing for awhile. It’s. all. too. real…
Losing is a good time to leave. Besides, it was time to go home, pack, and get to bed. A very long day awaited us…
| Hey, hey, easy kids. Everybody in the car. Boat leaves in two minutes… or perhaps you don”t want to see the second largest ball of twine on the face of the earth, which is only four short hours away? |
– Clark Griswold