31 December 2017

a year in review {two thousand seventeen}

Well, here we are at the end of another year that seems to have passed by entirely way too quickly. The older I get, the more I recognize how fast life is flying by, but there's nothing like the beginning of a new year to really let it sink in.

After a rough and problematic 2016, I had high hopes that this year would be kind to me, and it most certainly was. Not to say that it didn't come with it's own set of battles and challenges, as every year does, but I'm not anxiously wishing this year away like I was the last, and that feels good. 

Some highlights include that week in February when we got a huge dumping of snow, welcoming sweet baby Addy into the family, growing my first garden, camping on Salt Spring and in Tofino with the girls, opening my etsy shop, summer trips to Vancouver, a short road trip to Seattle with Tanner, a trip to Vegas and Big Bear Lake with my momma in August, quitting my call centre job and starting nannying again, and so much time with loved ones. Not to mention that my mental health has been the best it has been in years, which I am so grateful for that I can hardly try to explain what that means to me. 

I have big plans and high hopes for 2018. I'm really looking forward to seeing how it all plays out! 

Happy New Year, Friends!

18 October 2017

vegas to big bear

We woke up bright and early on our fourth morning in Vegas, hopped on the Deuce, and boarded a greyhound towards San Bernardino. We spent most of the four and a half hour drive watching out the window at the desert landscape, talking, and listening to music. We even met a girl who had been on greyhounds for three days, going from Oklahoma to California! I'm sure glad that our trip was only a few hours rather than days!

When we arrived in San Bernardino, we had a couple of hours to kill before our bus to Big Bear arrived, so we wandered the area to find something to eat. We happened to stumble upon an In-N-Out, which we were pretty happy about!

After a burger and a drink and some lounging around, we boarded the Mountain Transit to Big Bear Lake. 

After another hour and a half, we arrived in Big Bear and reunited with my sister. The three of us haven't all been together since she moved to California in 2011, so it was really special to have time together all three of us. 

I didn't take out my big camera in Big Bear, but I did capture some of the things we did with phone photos! Here are some highlights!

Sandwiches at Grizzly's Bear Belly Deli & Cafe for lunch one day

Dinner at Wyatt's. this cute little saloon type restaurant that opens up in the community centre a few days a week. The food was great, but the atmosphere was better! We enjoyed our meal outside under the twinkly lights with a beer and live music.

My sister's booth at one of the markets she sells at! She sells patterned leggings at a bunch of different markets around the area, and we got to tag along to a couple while we were in town. It's a lot of fun seeing how she earns a living, but also fun to wander the markets and find souvenirs to bring back home! 

On one of the days, we rented a pontoon for eight hours and spent the day on the lake. We had drinks, music, takeout BBQ for lunch, and really just enjoyed chatting and lounging on the boat all day. 

A momma and her girls, while wandering the Village one afternoon

Some other highlights worth mentioning that I don't have photos of:

Murray's Night - Murray's Saloon & Eatery is the best little bar in town. My sister and her boyfriend are regulars and the environment there is so great. We were there for hours, dancing, drinking, singing kareoke, and making new friends! 

Cosmic Golf - For something around $5, we went mini golfing one night at this glow in the dark outside golf course. It got a little competitive, but we had so much fun! 

And after all that fun, it was time to make our trek back to Vegas before flying home the next day. There were tears all around saying goodbye. It's never easy leaving a loved one that you don't get to see so often, but we had such a great time together and I know we'll see each other soon!

The bus home. This is a whole other story, but to cut it short, we rode through the desert for four and a half hours on a bus without a single seat open with broken AC. It was hot, it was stinky, and everyone was miserable! 

Landing back on Canadian soil- always a welcome sight after being away

03 October 2017

viva las vegas

In August, my cute little momma and I took a trip to Vegas for my 21st. It was my first time there, and her second, and we had the greatest time.

We flew Victoria to Seattle, then Seattle to Las Vegas. We landed late on a Monday night, got checked into our hotel, had a drink at the bar in the lobby, then walked over to a Circle K gas station for snacks and drinks to keep in our hotel room. It was late at night but the air was warm and we had the best time just hanging out outside of our hotel having a few drinks.

The next morning, after sleeping in for the first time in months, we made our way to the strip. We mostly just wandered the Venetian on our first day. We had a drink in the Rockhouse Bar, walked around, saw the canal, St. Mark's Square, and took a bunch of photos. Then we headed to CVS, got a couple of drinks, and sat outside in the shade, enjoying the warm breeze.

After sitting around for awhile, we made our way up the strip a bit. We stood and watched the Wynn fountains for probably half an hour. The fountains played to the beat of the music and it was just so entertaining to watch. I think it was one of both of our favourite things on the new strip.

A bit later that night, we had dinner in the diner at our hotel, where our waiters name was Spanky and the staff would break out in song every 15 minutes or so. It was another highlight of our trip, and some of the staff were actually amazing singers!

After dinner, we left our hotel and made our way to the Fremont Street Experience. We ended up staying until the early hours of the morning. I think it was around 3:30 when we headed back to the hotel. We just loved the live music and all the action. We gambled the tiniest bit, made a bunch of friends, and really just enjoyed ourselves.

The next day, we didn't wake up until past noon. We headed to the IHOP near our hotel for breakfast, then lounged around for most of the day with a bit of a hangover. Around 5 PM, we braved leaving our hotel room and headed up the Stratosphere tower. The views from the top were amazing!

Even later that night, after lounging in our room some more, we made our way back to the strip to check out a couple more of the bigger hotels.

The next morning, we would hop on a greyhound to California to reunite with my sister all together for the first time in over 5 years. But that'll be the next post!

Vegas, it was a grand first time. I hope to come back someday.