Monday, October 21, 2013


Last week Eric and I headed to Vegas for his annual work conference.  With the help of Super Gangy, we were able to leave Aubrey behind in safe hands for really what was the first time on a vacation post baby.  (Eric thinks I am being dramatic when I say this, reminding me that we have had a few overnight trips here and there...I say it doesn't really count unless you leave the state and are gone for longer than 48 hours.)
Mandalay Bay 67th Floor Lounge

We got into Vegas around 7:30ish Friday night.  We stayed at Trump International the first night.  Beautiful hotel, no definitely a different feel to it than other Vegas accommodations.  What I loved most the gigantic bathtub that washed away all the airport goo.  Eric and I cleaned up and then headed out to explore the strip.  We debated eating at a little authentic taco stand down by the Riviera...the line was out the door so it had to be good.  But upon a closer look at the menu, beef tongue tacos just didn't seem too appetizing.  So we passed on that, but each time we walked by the joint for the remainder of the week it was still packed shoulder to shoulder.  I guess the next time you are in Vegas and you are feeling adventurous, check this place out and let me know if we missed a great opportunity.  Instead, we headed down the Mirage so I could finally taste one of those amazing Corned Beef sandwiches from Carnegie Deli which I have heard Eric talk about so much.  After getting caught in some serious Treasure Island show traffic, we finally made it to our destination only to find out that the deli is under construction and would be closed the entire time we were in Vegas.  Then we got trapped inside Treasure Island on our way back to our hotel, only to wander aimlessly for 45 minutes trying to find an exit from the casino.  This trip was starting to feel like a real "Reinholt" experience...
Sandi's favorite free Vegas snacks!  Parasol Bar, Wynn
 Saturday brought out the "Eby" luck which thankfully continued on for the rest of our trip.  We checked into The Wynn, which was amazing.  I told Eric that I could stay within the hotel walls, not have to leave, and be perfectly content.  (Until we got the bill for our first round of drinks at the Parasol Bar...$9 for a Stella?  Better walk on down to that liquor store and stock up for the next couple of days.)  Saturday night was my big night of plans....dinner reservations at Encore, our sister-hotel, followed by Le Reve.  Dinner- best crab cake we've ever had, and Le Reve (The Dream)- beautiful, bizarre, how can those people hold their breath for that long?

Eric sporting his early November beard at the PepperMill
Sunday we ventured down to the Peppermill for breakfast, where we reveled with all our table neighbors at how gigantic one establishment can actually make a pancake and omelet.  Did some light shopping at the souvenir shops for Aubrey Grace, headed back to the room for a nice nap.  Later we headed to the mall for some shopping and watched as Vegas threatened rain.  Back to the Wynn for what was maybe my favorite moment of the trip- cocktails waterfall side outside of the Parasol Bar.  The best Sangria I've ever had made me think of my Aunt Teri.  Sad she wasn't there to enjoy the moment with me, but happy knowing that such moments in life make me think of her and make me smile.  I really wish I could have bottled up that Sangria and taken it back for her.
Sangria at the Parasol Bar
Next we Next we headed to The Palazzo Hotel next door for some dinner.  Just a casual italian restaurant will do...keep the wine coming, please.  After all that drink I built up some courage to try my hand at a table, so Eric lead us to Treasure Island and we sat down at a Pai Gow table for a few hours.  That was fun!!  We had some fabulous young gay men to chat with and I tried to convince one of them why he really should leave the Republican Party and join the good guys.  We won a little bit of money, were served many free drinks, and left happy happy.
Outside The Palazzo Hotel

Monday morning...yuck.  Eric had to get up bright and early to get to his conference.  I decided to explore our hotel in more depth and had brunch pool side at a darling cafe.  It was a bit pricey, but my gigantic cup of coffee and avocado omelet were totally worth it.  As was eavesdropping on the table next to me mention "Mario" so casually in their conversation 100 times.  (Mario Batali??  Now after being home and carefully investigating the matter, I realize they were talking about Mario Balotelli, some soccer player, which makes MUCH more sense considering conversation I was able to overhear with clarity.)  Next, I headed down the pool for a few hours and managed to get some nice sun on the face.  This was really wonderful but did make me a big sad that I didn't have two more days ahead of me to lounge around this body of water.
Nice and early for the show.  Just how I like it.
Le Reve.  Interpretive swimming is confusing.  But beautiful.

Monday night Eric and I took a cab down to Mandalay Bay to have drinks and light appetizers on the 64th Floor Lounge.  The view was really spectacular, cozy and romantic atmosphere.  We then headed over to the Excalibur and sat down at another Pai Gow table.  I wouldn't call our table mates as lively or engaging, but again we left with money in our pockets.  Back to the hotel for a very late dinner and then down for my last sleep at The Wynn.  Left early the next morning for the airport and Eric stayed on another night to finish up his conference.  Coming home from vacation isn't that bad at all when you have a pretty girl to come home to, especially when she seems to change so much over the course of a few days.  She had plenty of fun on her adventures with Gangy and though she was a snuggle bug when I got home, I don't think she was traumatized by us leaving at all.  She has gotten some pleasure out of the snow globe we brought home and the book about the Little House on the Hill.

Eric told me last night that he think next year or the year after the conference will be help in Orlando, Florida.  Oh boy...won't that be an adventure.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Aubrey reads The Very Hungry Caterpillar

When I was pregnant, Aunt Teri gave us this book with the little caterpillar.  I thought it was such a sweet gift at the time.  I now know that the joke was on me.  We are reading this book about 25 times each night WHILE watching the video on Netflix.  I am so sick of this book.  But it is hard to deny your two year old the joy of counting how many pieces of fruit a caterpillar ate through over and over again.  And I always gets a good laugh when she pronounces sausage.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Tea Party and Monkey n' Around

Aubrey has spent the week in busy chatter.  Sentences are starting to flow...and, we sometimes even understand their intent.  Repeated lines this week have included, "Ewww...that's gross!" while checking out the bottoms of her shoes.  And, "It's coming!  It's coming!" while waiting for Netflix to begin her new favorite show, The Hungry Caterpillar and Other Eric Carle Stories.  She also continues to assess the weather each morning on our way to school..."It's clouw-y!  Too Clouw-y.  No moon!"

Eric and I participated in the neighborhood garage sale this week.  We believe that health care and garage sale items should be free to those who need it, so not a dollar was made on said garage sale. (Please share with the Republicans who are completely responsible for the current shut-down of the government.) Actually, we lost a few bucks because Eric accidentally set out some items that belong to our new microwave with the old microwave in the drive-way.  We got a good laugh at the fact that we are the only people who could possibly lose money by selling our own items.