Thursday, December 30, 2010

It's purty!

For those of you who remember this post will recall that I entered a contest last month. Well, lo and behold, I WON! The stroller is now sitting in little one's room and it's going to stay in its box until we get our referral. Truth be told, I did take a peek at it and I'm in lurve.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Always a story...

Josh, mom and I went to Buffalo this past Monday and Tuesday. We wanted to get away and do some shoppy goodness.

We left at 6:00am Monday morning, so we could be at the Walden Galleria mall by the time they opened. Before we hit the road we had to stop at Tim Hortons for breakfast. By the time we hit the road it was closing in on 7:00.

We started out, as usual, at Target and walked around there for an hour or so.

We did a lot of shopping, I got myself some nice sweaters at Macy's, and a couple pairs of jeans at Lord & Taylor. They were having a post-Christmas sale and I got the jeans at 25% off, plus they had a coupon...so it was a really sweet deal. :)

By the time we were finished with the mall, it was closing in on 2:00pm and we were all pretty hungry. We decided to go to the Olive Garden. We used to love that restaurant when they used to be in Canada, and we haven't been there in years. Now I see why they went out of business here.

I called the restaurant and did "call ahead" seating. There was a 35 minute wait for a table, but since I called ahead, we only had to wait for about 10-15 minutes which wasn't too bad.

We were sitting at our table for a good 15-20 minutes before the waiter came over. We were too hungry to get up and leave, though in hindsight we should have done just that.

We placed our order and they brought out the warm breadsticks and salad. We were talking and eating, and then my mom found...something in her salad. A hair. Eww. It was pretty nasty.

We asked for the manager to come over. He trundled over and apologized for the "inconvenience" (yes, he actually said that). He then went on to talk about how all the staff in the kitchen wear hairnets and that it shouldn't have happened. He then asked if we wanted more salad. Umm, really? Do you really think we want MORE hairy salad?

A few minutes later our waiter then came over with our meals. He got Josh's meal right, my mom's meal was right, but he totally screwed up mine. I ordered the cappelini pomodoro, and he gave me chicken parmesan. Apparently they sound alike? He took away my meal and said it would be about five minutes for a new one. Fine. He came back about two minutes later and my mom told him that hers was cold. He said that he could make another one and it would take "five minutes". Oh yes, the story gets better.

He finally got the orders correct and as we were eating, the general manager of the restaurant came over to talk about our meal. She said that she was just told about what happened, again mentioned the hairnets that the kitchen staff wear and gave us a five dollar coupon for our next meal. She also said that "lunch would be on us".

We finished eating and decided to order dessert. The desserts were fine and the waiter came back and said that there would be a bill for them. We asked to see the manager again, and after some hemming and hawing, she said that they would throw in the desserts. I mean, she DID say that lunch would be on them, she didn't say anything about dessert being extra. :P

Thankfully, the rest of the trip was uneventful...

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Seriously...

WTF gets into people's heads? This is freaking hilarious!

Monday, December 13, 2010

51

Today marked 51 months that we've been logged in. FIFTY ONE. I don't think I really have much to say about that.

On the upside, we got a piece of mail from the CIC (Citizenship and Immigration Canada) saying that they are processing our immigration paperwork for little one. Not that it means much, since our referral is still X number of months away, but it paves the way for little one to become a Canadian citizen when we get her. In the letter, it mentioned that it's going to take 27 weeks for them to "approve" us. I can do 27 weeks standing on my head, when you compare it to FIFTY ONE months. (Yeah, I just had to say that one more time).

Saturday, November 13, 2010

50 months...

or...

* 131,500,800 seconds
* 2,191,680 minutes
* 36,528 hours
* 217 weeks (rounded down)

Not much more to say than that.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Let's try this again...



ChristmasGiveawayButtons10125x125

5 Minutes for Mom is having another contest. I'm going to enter the contest and try my chances again. Perhaps I'm just a glutton for punishment. ;)

Wish me luck...

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Monday, October 04, 2010

Starting to believe...

I checked in on RQ this morning to look at her infamous projections for the next few months, and according to her, the CCAA should be into July (2006) this coming February or March! *deep breath*

There's actually a chance that we might see our referral in less than a year?! Holy crap.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Eternity

On Saturday night, we went to our BFF's* house for a street party. It was an absolute blast. During the party, their daughter, her friend and her friend's mom were doing airbrush tattoos, so I got...a few. Anyways, one of the ones I chose was the Chinese symbol for "eternity". I figure that's an appropriate one.

(The picture of the tattoo didn't turn out as well, so I had to Google it.)

Today marks four years that we've been logged in. FOUR YEARS. At least in my mind that's a freaking eternity. It's a hard day, but we'll wait as long as it takes until we get our "Little Maple".


*BTW, you really need to update your blog, woman! ;)

Friday, September 10, 2010

"Mark all as read?"

Is it bad that I don't blog anymore? Or that I don't read blogs? I'm just so...over it.

Don't get me wrong, there are a select few that I read religiously, but for the most part, I just don't have the oomph I once did.

(BTW, I don't know if anyone is even reading this.)

I haven't blogged about our summer vacation (which was awesome). We drove from T.O. down to Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Georgia. Seeing good friends again was awesome, but I miss them...

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Friday, August 13, 2010

47

Yup, it's that time of the month again...47 down. ?? to go.

I haven't forgotten about the blog, I just have nothing to say here anymore. Blah.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Hmm what do you think?

I was sitting in my FIL's car this afternoon, after having been to the bank, and as I was about to put my seatbelt on, I noticed something on my shirt. A ladybug.

Now, I'm not one to necessarily believe in "signs", but what the ladybug did next was rather curious. It flew from my shirt and landed right on my charm bracelets. For long time readers of my blog, you know that every month I place a charm on my bracelet to mark each passing LIDiversary.

Strange.

Do YOU think it means anything?

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

46...

Yup, another month down. What else is there to say? At least the rumours are starting to come in...let's hope that they finally do a half-decent sized batch for a change. I'll be happy if I can mark off a good chunk of days this time.

Keeping everything crossed, though I highly doubt it.

Monday, July 12, 2010

UBP10, or why I'm boycotting Hilton...

I held off writing this post as long as I could, but right now I'm pretty peeved with Hilton Garden Inn.

If any of you remember this post, you'll recall that I entered a contest in which I *could* have won a prize. Well, I did, win. I actually won a very nice prize in fact.

In theory at least.

I had entered to win a $250 gift certificate for Hilton Garden Inn. All was going well, until, of course, it was time to *receive* the gift certificate. Apparently something funny happened on the way to the proverbial forum.

The contact that this person had with Hilton went on maternity leave and her replacement didn't want to fulfill the gift certificate that I rightfully won. There was also an excuse that Hilton Garden Inn was not happy about their placement on the prize list. Apparently with such a nice prize, they expected to be placed higher on the list.

How any of this affects me and/or them going back on their word, is beyond me.

For the past (almost) three months, I have heard from my contact that it's going to be sent out "immediately", and yet nothing ever seems to come of it.

Josh and I are going on vacation soon, our intention was to use the gift certificate during our trip, which would have come in *very* handy. Since this happened, and no resolution is on the horizon, we made a concerted effort during the 2+ weeks that we'll be on vacation, to avoid any and all Hilton hotels.

Oh yeah, if anyone from Hilton happens to pop by the blog, which I doubt, feel free to explain why this happened...

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Sunday, June 13, 2010

45

Forty-five months, where do I begin? 45 is a significant number for me. Personally it's a number where I never thought we would get up to. Yes, I know, there are people who are/have been waiting longer than us, but when I was thinking about our referral last year, I just dreaded this month. My dad died when he was 45. I know I really shouldn't make any inference from that, but I do. I didn't think I could be any more 'down' than I am and have been for the past 3+ years, but today sucks. HARD.

So, another month and another charm. This month I'm adding the fortune cookie charm to the bracelet, which my sister-in-law chose (a long time ago).

This also marks the last month that I'm going to be adding charms to the bracelet.

I have a number of charms saved up, but I just can't bring myself to add them. They're a little too 'personal' and we would have to be a helluva lot closer to referral for me to even think about adding them. By adding them, that would mean I would have to look at them every.single.day and it's just too painful to do that right now.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Since I haven't done this in a while...

I'm going to shake the proverbial lurker tree and see who comes out. Come on, don't be shy, I don't bite...

...hard.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Yay...?

I got an email from our agency this afternoon and found out that our new update was given re-re-re-approval and we're 'in the clear' until May 20, 2012. I'm hoping that we get our referral before that runs out. I can't think of redoing all of this...again.

I feel kind of guilty posting and complaining about doing our update, when I have a friend whose dream is crumbling.

I guess I should count ourselves lucky, even though our situation is sucktacular.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Help needed...

Most of you know that I tend to stay away from 'controversial' topics on the blog and generally keep it 'light'. That's about to change, at least where this post is concerned.

A dear friend of mine who had a LID of May 8 2006, received some heart-wrenching news on Friday.

By all accounts she should be celebrating within the next few months. Her dream was about to come true. The dream of adopting her child. All of that has come to a swift end.

She got divorced two years ago, and she had just completed (what would have been) her last update. Everything was going swimmingly, when all that abruptly ended. She received a call from her agency and she was told that while the CCAA had initially approved her new 'status', they were now reversing that decision.

To say that she is devastated by this news is an understatement. She is crushed, her family is crushed. She needs some help. If any of you know of someone who got divorced mid-stream in their adoption, and successfully adopted their child, please contact her at this email address.

Please take a moment tonight, as you tuck your child into bed, or dream of your future with them, to think of my friend and her horrible predicament.

Thank you.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

44...

My brother (AKA Ugly) chose the charm for this month, it's pretty self-explanatory.

Personally though, I wanted to get a series of four charms that spell out UGLY, but he vetoed it...I wonder why. ;)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Feeling blah

I've been feeling really down all (mother's day) weekend. I used to love this day, years ago. I loved spending the day with my family.

The year that we tried to start our family was the same year that we lost my grandmother on mother's day. For the past 12 years it has sucked...a lot. I'm looking forward to the year when we can finally celebrate something.

I hate this feeling of helplessness.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Awesomeness overload!

For those of you that have been following the blog for the past week or so, you'll remember that I wrote this post all about the Ultimate Blog Party (or UBP10).

Anyways, I never thought it would happen, but I *actually* won something and I couldn't be more pleasantly surprised and happy about it. I won a $250 gift certificate to a Hilton Garden Inn Hotel! How awesome is that?!

It's going to come in *so* handy when we go on our road trip later this year. WOO...HOO!!!

Thanks everyone at 5 Minutes for Mom!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

43

43 months down. ?? to go.

I chose this charm to add to the bracelet as a remembrance for my late paternal grandmother. I'm named after her, and her name was...Rose.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Hell Mobility

You might wonder why I've got a picture of Snookie here, but all will be explained in time...

I've been having some issues with my cell phone lately. I've got the Palm Pre (need I say more?) and there have been problems with it for a while. Long story short, the volume button on the side doesn't work. I can decrease the volume, but not increase it (without going into the menu and adjusting it there). I can hear the phone ring, but I can't play videos or listen to music on it. I know it's not the end of the world, but when I buy something I kind of expect it to work.

So I went into Hell Bell Mobility this evening to talk about the issue. I went up to the customer support person who was busy talking on her cell. She was a combination of Snookie and Carmela Soprano - complete with the poofy hair and the long fingernails. I mean, LONG. She had her nails airbrushed with the Louis Vuitton insignia on them. Seriously.

They had to be at least a couple of inches long and she kept putting her fingernails in her mouth while we were talking. GROSS. But I digress...

Snookie The sales rep asked me when I got my phone, and I know I got it sometime in September, so all I said was "late September". She went to her computer and started looking for the date I purchased it...by the DATE. Not by the phone number or any other information, and she just kept scrolling. One of the other reps bitchslapped asked her to step away from the computer and go hooch it up elsewhere deal with another customer.

He found all the details and told me it was still under warranty. Great. He said I could get another phone, but they were on back order. I asked him how long it would take to get a new phone and he told me it could "take up to a month". Umm, ques'que fuck?!

Not that I live and die by my phone, but that's kind of an inconvenience. I asked the rep if I would lose any apps that I recently downloaded, and he said he wasn't sure and if I wanted to know, that I could call Bell. Umm, I'm in the Bell store, shouldn't he know that?!

Anyways, I called Bell from the BELL STORE and the customer service rep went through some trouble shooting with me. He asked me to restart the phone because "sometimes that fixes the problem". Umm, my problem is a mechanical problem with the button, but apparently I don't know what I'm talking about...but I digress.

When the phone restarted, he told me to click this, click that, do this, do that, and after twenty seven minutes and fifty three seconds (yes, the phone had a time stamp), he told me that the issue was with the phone's buttons. For all things holy...I was about to scream.

He told me that I should go home, upload all my pictures, and any info that I had on it, to my computer and then go back to Hell Bell and ask for a new phone. Didn't we already establish that I needed a new phone?! Anyways, he told me that if I wanted a new phone, I could get one for "free".

Technically it would be "free", except I would have to pay $35 for them to diagnosis the problem (yes, I already diagnosed it for them), and if I wanted a "loaner" phone while I wait for my "free phone", I could get one for $25. Yup, I could get my new, free phone for $60.

In the long run, I decided that I didn't want to bother. The issue doesn't affect the phone, per se, it's just annoying. Anyways, really, why should I pay for any of this when it's a technical problem? They suck.

Friday, April 09, 2010

Party hardy, drink Bacardi...

Ultimate Blog Party 2010


I've been doing the "Ultimate Blog Party" thing for a couple of years, and it's always a great way to "meet" new people and find out about them. For my regular readers, the handful that still keep reading my blurbs, the UBP is basically where you meet other bloggers and can actually win prizes. Some of the prizes kick ass, if I do say so myself. If I won anything, the one prize that would really come in handy would be the $250 gift certificate to a Hilton hotel, especially with our upcoming road trip this summer. ;)

Granted, I haven't won anything yet, but you never know...

For those of you that are new to this blog, I'm an ever-so-impatient, waiting mom for a child from China. So far it's been a very long process. When my husband and I started out, we were told that we would have a child within a year, but things changed...slightly.

Next week we'll have been waiting for 43 months. FORTY THREE long months. I'm not going to bore you with all the things that have led us to this point, but suffice it to say that this is the hardest thing I've ever been through. This wait has, in essence, drained us; emotionally. Who would have thought that it would be *this* difficult to have a child? But I digress...

The two things that have kept me somewhat sane throughout this process have been my wonderful husband of almost 14 years (is it wrong that I just referred to my husband as a 'thing'?), and my cat, Deuce.

If any of you new(er) folk would like to leave me a comment, I'll be sure to visit your blog.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Seriously...?

As I mentioned in my last post, we had met with our new social worker just this past Thursday. I just checked my email and the update is complete.

Seriously.

I'm absolutely stunned that since first talking with her on March 1st, that we were able to get all the documents complete, meet with her, and she was able to do our update. I'm sorry, but I'm just not used to this kind of prompt attention from a social worker.

Now if the CCAA could just hurry up...

Monday, April 05, 2010

Wow...just wow.

[Does anyone actually read this blog anymore?]

This past Thursday (yes, April Fool's Day and the middle of Passover), Josh and I met with our new social worker. We decided to schedule the meeting during Passover because: a) the house would be at its cleanest and,
b) Josh had the whole week off to help me with cleaning and preparing.

I can't get over how great she was.

We sat for just over two hours (she even ate my all-too-dry passover cake and said it was delicious) and talked about *everything* - including what's going on with our agency...

She wasn't a "typical" social worker, or at least what I've come to know as "typical" over the past 4+ years. She wasn't stiff (again, unlike the cake), she was *gasp* human. We talked, laughed, joked about things. It was totally bizarre, but in a good way.

She went over our original home study, page by page, but really only touched on the major points. She didn't even bother to comment on our first update because there really wasn't any substance to it. A few comments were made about our previous social workers (by her), which made me snort. ;)

When we got around to the topic of education, Josh mentioned that he had gotten his MBA during the time we were doing our original homestudy and that he had spent three weeks at Cranfield University. Our social worker's mouth dropped open. She told us that her second daughter was born on the grounds of the university (in a res). It was all a little bizarre considering how small the university is (in case anyone is familiar with the area, it's near Milton-Keynes). They spent about 15 minutes talking about the scenery, etc.

At the end of the meeting, we asked her if she wanted to see the rest of the house. She looked at me, and said that "your previous social worker saw it two years ago, that's good enough for me." (I wish I had known that before we cleaned it from top to bottom). :P

She told me to let her know when we're close (about a month or two before we think we'll get our referral). She actually schedules her vacations around referrals, so if she knows she's got a client who is getting theirs, she'll make sure she's in town.

We had such an enjoyable (I never thought that was possible) time with our social worker that when she left, I had to stop myself from hugging her. If any of the GTA folk need a social worker, leave me a comment and I'll pass her info on to you...

I know I've said it before, but I'll say it again, THANK YOU, LISA for giving us her name. We seriously can't thank you enough.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Click all as read?

Are you sure? Yes!

I had to do this to my google reader, so sad too bad. If I missed anything important on your blog, leave me a comment.

I had computer problems the last few days and the only access I had was through my Pre. I don't know how I made it through, honestly. :P

Saturday, March 13, 2010

...hear me roar!!! ***UPDATE***

Not the best picture, but so sad too bad. ;)

Today marks 42 months of waiting. FORTY TWO months. *splat*

To answer Dreamer's question, the charm was chosen by my MIL. It's representative of Josh's Hebrew name which translates into "lion". :)

Monday, March 08, 2010

What a difference!

Last Monday we started working on our update for our neverending adoption. We wanted to switch social workers, due to a few reasons - none of which I'm going to on here, and we went with a suggestion from our BFFs. The social worker turned out to be better than I could have ever imagined.

Seriously.

We have been in constant contact with her via email and phone calls. She's always there, even in the evenings AND on weekends. I've had more contact with the new social worker than I have been with both of the others, over the past four years, combined. Scary, isn't it?

We sent her our entire file on Tuesday, she sent us all the forms we had to fill out and sent them back to her. Everything was complete by Saturday (except for our physicals which occur at the end of March).

On Saturday we went to do our police background check, because we're such big criminals. Anyways, when we got there I asked the lady behind the counter how long it would take to get the paperwork back from the police. She told me that, on average, it would be about ten days. I told her that it was for an adoption. She asked me if it was the last piece of paperwork we were waiting for and I lied said yes. She told us to have a seat and five minutes later she handed it to us. How about that for efficiency?

With all this completed, we still haven't even met our social worker or even paid her a dime...but everything is complete. Is six days a record for getting the paperwork done? ;)

With everything we have been through, it's about bloody time that something goes smoothly. It's gone so smoothly, in fact, that with my nature I'm almost waiting for the other shoe to drop. How sad is that?

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Sunday, February 14, 2010

41

Yesterday marked our 41 month LIDiversary, nothing much more to say about that. My BIL chose this charm and when I showed it to him, he asked who picked it. It's been two years since he actually picked it, that he forgot.

I think that's a sign of the times.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Awesomeness...

I seriously love Ellen, and even though I've never watched The Jersey Shore, after this and the stupidity of it, I just might. Take a few minutes and watch it...

Monday, February 08, 2010

VD & CNY

Well, I'm back from a month long self-imposed blog break, did anyone even notice? Thanks to the few of you who checked in on me, it was appreciated.

Josh came home this evening with THE most gorgeous roses. He got them (early) for Valentine's Day as well as CNY. Is he not THE sweetest guy? :)

Friday, January 15, 2010

More fireworks...

videoSeven different hotels had seven minute displays, this is just a little taste of what we saw...

New Year's Eve

Just to give you an idea of the huge crowd that was on the strip. This was with about an hour to go before New Year's, and it got *much* more crowded as it got closer...

video

Bellagio fountain

video

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Las Vegas - Part 2 ***Long post ahead***

I've been more than a little lax in my blogging as of late, and haven't gotten around to writing the second part about our Las Vegas trip. My bad. We really didn't take *a lot* of pictures, but I'll share some of the better ones. I decided to make this post REALLY long, because if I split it up who knows when I'd get around to getting it done.

When last I left off, I mentioned how we were given another room (our third) which was quite the improvement...if I do say so myself.















After all the crap that we went through on our first day, we decided to take it easy for the rest of the evening and just did a little bit of touring up and down the strip.

video

The next morning (Tuesday), we went to the Hoover Dam. I had been there before, but Josh hadn't. We wanted to go to the Grand Canyon during this trip, but we didn't end up doing it. We were told by the tour organizer that the road to the Southern Rim of the Grand Canyon was snow covered and closed, and since the weather was so craptacular, we decided to just go to the Hoover Dam instead. Oh well.

We saw the new bridge that was being constructed, that will eventually bypass the Hoover Dam. For those of you that have been there, you know that there's only a two lane road (one lane in each direction) that goes over the Hoover Dam. The problem with that, of course, is that it leads to HUGE traffic jams for those that live in the area. We were told that it's not uncommon for there to be a five to six hour traffic nightmare every afternoon. Imagine going through that on your way home? Ugh.

While we were standing on the Hoover Dam (keep in mind that the road surface is the top of the dam), we looked out at Lake Mead. If you look closely at the picture, you'll notice the difference in the colour of the rock. The brown represents the actual colour of the rock. The white represents where the level of the lake used to be. Pretty neat, huh?







Anyways, after that we headed back to Vegas and went out for dinner at the hotel. We decided to keep things kind of low key that evening because we were going to a (free) comedy show. It was one of the comps that the hotel manager gave us...and man am I glad that it was free because it stunk. Seriously, smelly.It was hosted by J.J. Walker. For those of you who remember the show Good Times, that's who I'm referring to. He is SUCH a hack. I'm sorry but anyone who introduces himself and then says "Good evening, ladies and germs", shouldn't be doing comedy anymore. Seriously. His jokes were dated, and he just wasn't funny. At the end of the show he was signing t-shirts with the Dyn-o-mite logo on it. Just sad.

Wednesday was spent walking around the strip, which is what we did for a majority of our time there. Since Josh had never been to Vegas, I wanted to show him all the hotels, as well as seeing the new hotels myself. For most of the time, we didn't take the camera with us. So sad, too bad. ;)

Wednesday evening we went to the Bellagio hotel. If you ever get a chance to go to the buffet there, I *highly* recommend it. They have every kind of food imaginable. Seriously. After dinner we watched the fountain in front of the hotel. Four times an hour, in the evenings, there's a 'show' set to music.

Thursday was spent walking around the strip some more and we went to the Fashion Show Mall. We didn't buy anything, but we walked our feet off. I have to say I was more than a little disappointed with the shopping on this trip. Sure, there were things to buy if you wanted to shop at the boutiques, but I didn't feel like spending that kind of money. ;)

Thursday night, being New Year's Eve, we went to Ruth's Chris Steakhouse for dinner. Oh my, the steak was *amazing*. As the restaurant was a little ways away from our hotel, we took a cab there. The ride to the restaurant was uneventful, but on the ride back to the hotel we had the.best.cab.driver.ever. He was hilarious. He was telling jokes and had us in stitches, talking about how he was born in Cameroon and so on. He asked us if we had kids (gotta love when people get nosey), and we told him no. Josh did say, however, that we have a cat. He told us that we needed to have kids. He told us that he has seven kids; five biological and two adopted. At that point I did something I never do, I told a stranger about little one. He wished us well and told us that he had adopted his best friend's daughters (his friend was killed in a car accident).

Once we got back to the hotel, we went upstairs and changed...and then it was off to celebrate New Year's Eve with 400,000 of our closest friends. Yup, we brought in the new year on the strip. It was beyond awesome. Everyone on the strip was drunk, actually that's an understatement. They were FUBAR'ed. Actually when I went into one of the hotels, there was a gaggle of girls who were sitting on the floor of the bathroom in their mini skirts, texting the others in the next stall, playing paddycake with the floor and singing songs. If that isn't FUBAR, then I don't know what is.

There was a Bud Light truck in front of one of the hotels that was selling 67oz beer bottles (the equivalent of a six pack) for $14. There was a HOOGE lineup for those.

video

All in all, it was an awesome trip and I can't wait to go back...hopefully later this year. :)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The big 4-0

Another month, another charm. This one was chosen by Josh's sister. Yay.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Las Vegas - Part 1

December 28th we got to the airport at 6:10am for our 9:30am flight. We got caught up in the whole fufura with the Christmas Day attempted bombing and the after effects being that we had to get to the airport extra early for a few new layers of security. It made for a LONG day. Not that I mind, in the long run, since it will make things safer for everyone. Though at the time, it wasn't great.

We had four layers of security to go through. First we had to put our bags through the X-ray machine (which is normal), then we had to go through the X-ray machines ourselves, then a physical patdown and then our carry-on bags were physically searched. In order to make things easier on ourselves, we decided to check-in everything except my purse and Josh's camera bag. All of that took an hour and a half.

Once all that was complete, we sat around to board our plane. We waited...and waited...and waited. Then we waited some more. The flight could not take off until everyone was on board, and they decided to delay the flight because some passengers were caught up in the extra security measures.

Fine, whatever.

We eventually took off an hour and a half late. I guess I should count myself lucky, the previous day's 9:30am flight didn't take off until 2:00pm. Ugh.

We finally arrived in Vegas (bay-bee) and went to the hotel. We were able to check in early, so we went right up to our room. I took one look inside and noticed that they gave us a room with two double beds - I had requested a room with a king size, so that was a problem. I went down to the front desk and told them what happened and I was told "requests cannot always be filled and if you want a king size bed, you'll have to wait until 3:00 when normal check-in is."

Fine, whatever.

We put our bags in the secured baggage area and went to the Flamingo Hotel for a bite to eat.

Check out the size of the koi in relation to the size of the duck. Insane!




























After lunch, we went back to the hotel and got the keys to room #2. We walked in and this is what we saw...(notice the lovely stains on the floor).












































Needless to say, a call was *immediately* placed to the manager. I told him all that had gone wrong since we arrived (and that I always stay at this hotel), and he apologized profusely. He also told us that he would "do something" for our trouble. He asked me "what would you like me to do?" I told him to "think of something and get back to me".

About ten minutes later, a bellhop came up to our room and transferred our bags to the new room. The manager called us in the new room and said that he was reviewing our reservation details. He told me "the price you are paying is astronomical and I'll reduce your room rate". He ended up not only taking $300 off our stay, but he also sent us free tickets to the shows at the hotel as well as several food vouchers.

Awe.some.

I'll be posting more about our trip during the week...this is just a teaser. ;)

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Blown away...

When I went to get the mail today, I saw that I got a package. Inside, was a thoughtful note and beautiful gift. Tears were shed when I read the note. My friend, Mary (aka Belen), sent me a necklace and pair of earrings. I've 'known' her online for years, but we've never talked on the phone nor met in person. I was secretly hoping we could meet when we went to Vegas, but it didn't work out. One day we'll have to fix that...

If you can't read the note, it says:

Rhonda,

This is what I've been planning for months for you and never got around to with school.

I hope the necklace and earrings match something in your wardrobe and that they serve as a reminder that people from all over are constantly thinking of you and Josh and when you'll be holding your "Little Maple".

Much love from Nevada!
Mary Belen


The thing that makes this even more special is that the clasp is a gold heart. I don't know if she knew this or not, but gold hearts hold a special meaning for me. For our one year LIDiversary, I added a gold heart charm (the explanation is in that post). Also, everyday I wear this.