Saturday, November 14, 2015

Back to Reality-Last Day In Las Vegas

Last day in Vegas (and last post about it!!!).  We had to get back to reality sometime I guess. :/  The guys left at like midnight in a rush and we woke up early about 5 am.  I wanted to try to be out the door by 7 am so we could get on the road to be back by 2:30 pm for Amber’s flight.  We had to stop at Starbucks (of course), get souvenirs, and check out of the hotel before dropping Clarissa off at the airport. We stopped at the Las Vegas sign to take pictures on the way to the airport. 
There are several pictures of the three of us, but I think they are on Amber's phone.  Elvis took them!
After we dropped Clarissa off, me and Amber headed to hunt for aliens in Area 51!  The drive from Las Vegas is about 2.5 hours and so pretty!  You are surrounded by mountain ranges on either side of the road.  

We stopped at a tiny gas station to get gas and beef jerky before we didn’t have any more places to stop.  The map that we used told us that at a certain spot we will not have cell service and there isn’t any more gas stations.  Right after we turned into the Extraterrestrial Highway (yes, that is the actual state approved named-look it up on Google Maps), we saw this sign…

And about a ½ mile after is the Alien Research Center.  The Center was closed but we were able to take pictures outside of it.

We kept following the map and saw a long dirt/gravel road to our left after a while.  The map said that you travel down this road for 20 miles and you will get to the front gate.  We weren’t sure if it was the right road or not (it wasn’t marked) so we turned around and figured we could just wait until we could ask at the diner called Little AleInn in Rachel, NV.  We got to the diner and took pictures!!

There is an area where you can buy alien themed souvenirs.  Can you guess what I bought?? LOL.

The lady in the store was really rude.  It was like she was annoyed with tourists…but she works at a tourist location!  Come on now.  We took pictures, bought some souvenirs and left.  There was a lady outside who was MUCH more helpful (super sweet actually) and said that there was a road about 1.7 miles from the shop that will take us to the back gate where we could take pictures but not go past a certain point.  Off we went!

We travelled down about 10 miles on the dirt road and hit a paved road for another mile or so.  The girl at the counter said (rather rudely) “You better make sure you have a spare or you will have to walk all the way back.”  We had one and were kind of worried about it since we had to catch our flights, but the girl that was outside said that we wouldn’t have a problem and the road was well maintained.  It was well maintained with no potholes but I can see why some people would get flat tires.  We sure had LOTS of rocks hit the back of the car.  Good thing we had damage waiver!!!

We got to the gate and saw the no trespassing signs and the guard gate.  There wasn’t anyone at the guard gate, but there were cameras everywhere!

We jumped back in the car and headed home with no incident!  Thank goodness.  I just wanted to mention how awesome the art is at the Las Vegas airport.  I had to ride the tram in between terminals and saw a set of art that was so awesome.  What made it even awesomer (is that a word?!) was that it was created by kids!  They take a bunch of smaller transportation pictures and create on large one.  So cool!

These butterflies were floating above the escalators.  I think they were in the shape of a butterfly, but I couldn’t tell from my angle.

These airplanes were telling you which direction the escalators were going.

These clay animals were coming out of the concrete.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Day 4 in Vegas

After the hike it was time for Britney Spears!!!!!  We were so excited about going but our feet and legs were killing us from the hike earlier in the day.  We were all slow walking to Planet Hollywood for the concert.   I had gotten a magnet the day before of Britney that I will make into a Christmas ornament for my travel tree because….going to the concert was a bucket list item!!!!!!  (I’m on track to complete 13 bucket list items this year!).  Right outside the concert area is a small Britney Spears store that sells magnets, posters, t-shirts, flip flops, etc of Britney items.  If I can’t find a Christmas ornament, I just get something to make one with, hence the magnet.

We had pretty far back seats but we still paid $120 each.  They should have some screens for the people who sit that far back.  Anyway, the show was full of energy and her greatest hits.  We had mixed reviews of the show.  Clarissa hated it, Amber loved it, and I had mixed feelings.  I’m sure everyone has heard of her song, Lucky (youtube it if you haven’t).  I feel bad for her because her life is like that song.  Who knows, she might be 100% content but I just get the feeling that she just wants to retire to her hometown away from all of the hype Hollywood has.

After the show we went back to the hotel and everyone went out to a club (except me).  The next morning (Sunday), I was going to drive to Area 51 but we decided to just have a late brunch with mimosas at Hexx in front of the Paris hotel.  The brunch was all you can drink mimosas for $20 plus whatever food you get.  I had these shredded chicken nachos called chilaquiles that were AMAZING!!  Brett and I both got them and we had the same reaction.

After brunch everyone went back to the hotel and I hung back to explore the hotel.  I couldn’t find any free attractions like they had at other hotels, but it was a very pretty hotel.  I could have gone to the top of the Eiffel Tower, but I didn’t want to pay unless it was the real thing! :)  I walked around and watched a “hot” table of Craps but was totally lost!  A lady tried to explain it to me but it went over my head.  Her mom had just put $5 on a ‘fire bet’ and won $5,000. Must be nice!

 I witnessed a wedding in Vegas!  I am not going to count it as a bucket list item though because I kind of wanted it to be at a little chapel with drunk people.

Next, I went to the roulette table and tried to figure out that game.   A wonderful couple sat next to me and explained everything.  I wanted to gamble some money but not everything so I just got out $60.  I was doing pretty well and made $110 and thought “I will double my money and then stop.”  Famous last words because I lost it all. LOL.  Oh well.  After that I spent some time at the Bellagio fountains waiting for the show to come on.  I loved the fountains!!   Oh so pretty!

The guys were going to leave at 11 pm so we just stayed inside.  Hector was crashed out on the couch while we all went to the roller coaster outside of our hotel (New York New York)!!!!  The roller coaster passed right by our hotel rooms (we had adjoining rooms) and we waved at a sleeping Hector. :)  The roller coaster was awesome!  It really hurts your neck but it was still lots of fun.  They take about 3 photos of you before and during the ride, hoping that you will buy them, but we didn’t want them that bad.  FYI, if you are staying at NYNY you get a buy one get one half off coupon to the roller coaster by showing your room key.

Next up…Area 51 and some airport art!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Las Vegas Day 3

So, if you read yesterday’s post you will remember that we were late picking up Amber from the airport.  Our friend Hector had kept asking a ton of questions and I wasn’t sure why.  It turns out that he came to Vegas!  He had thought we were staying at the Flamingo (since I love flamingos) but we weren’t there.  Then he thought we were going to O but he missed us after the show so he was like “just come pick me up, I’m tired of walking”.  After years of traffic, we finally found him and who else did we see?????  Our other friend Brett!  They both ended up surprising us.  Hector decided he was coming at 6:30 pm and at 8:30 pm they were on a flight to Vegas!  How fun.  I love spontaneous stuff like that. :)

That night everyone went out to the clubs in town.  I didn’t go.  I am not a club person.  I can go to a bar all night, but clubs are not my scene.  I am not a dancing, strobe light kind of person.  They weren’t home at 3 am so I went looking for them. I figured that I could take an hour of dancing but that was it.  I  left the hotel and was almost to the end of the block when I saw Hector wondering the streets with a CVS bag full of Doritos and other snacks that he was munching on.  He was lost and now it was my turn to babysit him.  The girls had lost him and Brett at the club.  I will omit what happened between now and then but I found Brett wondering the streets lost too.  #whathappensinVegas
Me and my two babysitting charges.  Look how awesome my eye shadow looks!!!

The next morning afternoon was fueled by lots of coffee.  Clarissa went shopping for a new outfit and the rest of us went on the most intense hike ever!  I had heard of the Gold Strike Canyon Hot Springs Hike (6 mile hike) by a local blogger and I knew that I wanted to do it.  However, I did not know how hard it would be.  They said you would have to use ropes to get down some parts, but wow, it was hard.  At first the guys didn’t want to go but after I said “hot springs at the bottom” for the gazillionith time they wanted to go.  Thank goodness they went because we would have not been able to get to the bottom or come back up without them.  Both Amber and I have some short legs and no upper body strength so unless you do, make sure to take a couple of (cute) guys with you. :)

The trail head is about a 30-45 minute drive outside of town, right by the Hoover Dam (it's the same exit).  The first part of the hike was easy with a few obstacles, the 2nd part was more challenging.  About 30 minutes into the hike you come to a water stop where people have put excess water for anyone who didn’t bring any with them.  We all brought some (because I told them to) but apparently there was someone who didn’t take water with them and they died.  There isn’t a guarantee that water will be there, so be smart and bring your own water!  It was a nice, breezy day when we went but there are signs warning people not to hike July through September.  After the water station the hike got harder.  I was able to do it but it would have helped with hiking boots (instead of tennis shoes) and hiking grip-like gloves.  There is not cell signal so you are pretty much screwed if you don’t come prepared.

There are spray painted arrows that show you the easiest routes to take and there are about 5 or 6 ropes that you can use to make you way up or down.  At one boulder obstacle, we were like “umm…let’s not do this since it’s impossible” but then we saw the arrow pointing to an “easier” path.  At one rope ladder area I freaked out and I am so glad the guys were there to help me.  On the way back Amber and I definitely had to have the guys help us by doing some hoisting and pulling.  I think it was the first obstacle going back up when I thought I was stuck and would have to live like a cave woman and wear mountain lion fur because I couldn’t get back to civilization. 

About halfway down you start seeing trickles of water and small pools.  At ¾ of the way down you will find pools deep enough for 2-4 people to get in, and the bottom is where you will find the largest pool plus the Colorado River.  The river was running really swiftly so I wouldn’t recommend getting in the actual river but Brett did get in the largest hot spring and enjoyed it.  I put my feet in and it was HOT.  It was so amazing after a long hike.

We weren’t sure how long it would take us to get back so we only stayed about 30 minutes at the bottom.  It gets dark around 5:30 pm so and we didn’t want to have to climb boulders in the dark.  We were at a really dangerous looking area on the hike back to the top and we thought we saw a way to go back through the cracks but I was afraid to go in first so I made Hector go in first. LOL.  “Hector, you go first and tell us if there’s snakes.”  He wasn’t too happy. :)

We finally made it to the end and were so tired, not to mention filthy!  As soon as we got back to the hotel the guys crashed but Amber and I had to get dressed for Britney!  Clarissa just looked at us like we were all crazy for hiking on vacation!  I wish we had had time to take a nap but we needed to get dressed.

Tomorrow you will hear all about Britney Spears!!!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Las Vegas Days 1 and 2

I have wanted to go to Vegas for a while to see Britney Spears in concert at Planet Hollywood.  I have heard that she is retiring and I wanted to go before she did.  In October we saw that she renewed her contract for two more years, but whatever, we saw her!  My friends Clarissa and Amber wanted to see her so we made plans to travel to Vegas to see the show.  We try to do something once a year together and this is what we did!  Clarissa and I went on the cruise (Amber couldn’t go) in May together. 

I made my flight plans for what I thought was Friday morning until Monday afternoon, but it turns out that I did it for Thursday morning instead.  It must have been from when I was checking different dates for pricing and I just didn’t double check the dates.  That’s ok, we got to stay another night in Vegas!!  My plane landed about 10:30 am and I met Clarissa at the rental car terminal.   We got a great deal on a car (Toyota Avalon) because Clarissa still works for the Green Machine and got a discount (all three of us have worked there at one point-I got both of them the jobs.  Amber just left a few weeks ago).We checked into our hotel (New York New York) and took a nap. LOL.    Yep, we took naps in Vegas. Let me tell you, this weekend was fueled by LOTS of Starbucks (and mimosas).
#IloveStarbucks #IcedCoffee

That night we went to dinner at the Hard Rock CafĂ© (not worth it) and then went to the Thunder From Down Under Show at Excalibur.  Clarissa had wanted to see it the last time she was in Vegas but didn’t end up seeing it because someone (cough* cough* Krista cough* cough*) had met their quota of seeing sexy stuff in Vegas.  I am not usually a fan of seeing male strippers, honestly.  Clarissa was so excited though and I heard that it was a show and no dollar bills were involved, so I went.   The place was PACKED with women who needed a thrill, I guess.  They did dancing numbers to songs just like in the Magic Mike movies and brought women on the stage to do dances with.  They had women put their hands in their pants and everything.  I was kind of grossed out.  So many germs.  Go wash your hands!  Sorry, that’s not my scene (in public, haha).  I mean, the guys were HOTTTTTTT but I don’t want to touch anyone who I just met and who does that for a living.  No thanks.  Clarissa LOVED it though.  She even got her picture taken with them at the end.  When they would take their  shirts off I was like “Oh, now that is pretty” but I don’t like to be touched in general, much less from Vegas strippers.  I am sure the guys are perfectly wonderful in real life.  I just have never been a fan of going to those kind of shows, but I did have fun.
We could only take pictures during one "act" but there are a few racier photos in my picture page.
The next morning we went to the flamingo habitat at theFlamingo Hotel!!!!!!!!  Yes, it was a bucket list item of course.  When I was in Vegas a few years ago I stopped at the hotel but I didn’t see the flamingos so that was on the top of my list.  There were other birds there in the habitat, not just flamingos but I made a beeline for the flamingos.  So pretty.  Afterwards we went to the gift shop and I got a flamingo wine glass with a lid and a flamingo Christmas ornament for my travel tree collection. 

We went over to the Bellagio to buy tickets to “O” at the box office.  They don’t discount that show like the other Cirque shows so we just bought them in person.  On the way to the ticket area we stopped at the lobby area to take pictures of the beautiful Chihuly art that is on display on the ceiling.  I saw it last time I was there but I loved seeing it again.  So beautiful!!

In the conservatory area there is an art display of flowers and other items.  I don’t know what to call it, it is flower art but I don’t know what they call it.  It’s a great place to bring kids if you need something for them to do (but don’t bring kids to Vegas-have some ALONE time!!).    The theme was a fall time theme with squirrels, raccoons, trees, etc.  It was pretty cool.

I have always wanted to see a Cirque du Solei show (bucket list #2 of the weekend) and the original was not playing that night.  We looked at the reviews of the shows that were playing and “O” seemed to be right up our alley.  They have two shows a night at 7 pm and 9:30 pm, we chose the 7 pm.  We had third row seats since it was the best value.  At the higher level tickets we got a 20% discount because they were a partner hotel with our hotel, New York New York so it was about only $10 higher to sit in nicer seats.

I loved the show.  O is a water themed show with acrobatics, diving, dancing and more.  I don’t even know how to describe it but it was AMAZING!!!!!!  I think any Cirque show would be amazing but I especially loved O.  I didn’t really understand the story (if there was one) but it was still awesome.  They start out with two clowns in about 15 minutes before the show starting and then you see them again throughout the show.  The pool is 1.5 million gallons that has lifts that expand and contract within the different acts of the show.  Read the Wikipedia page for more info on it, it has some cool information.  My favorite parts were the diving, the boat in midair aerial show, and the swinging swing things with more diving and flips.  I know my descriptions are not very good but I don’t know how to describe it and I don’t want to spoil anything.  GO SEE IT!!! ;)

Amber’s plane was arriving at 10:30 pm so we knew we would have time to see the show at 7 pm and still pick her up on time.  Little did we know that we would be late…more on that tomorrow!!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Scratch Map

OMG!  Have you guys seen this map called Scratch Map?  It is a FABULOUS way to track where you have travelled to.  I am so excited about it, can you tell?!!

Each country you go to, you just scratch off that section of brown and it has the colorful country underneath it!  By the time you scratch everything off, you would have an awesome looking map to hang up.

It would make an excellent gift for anyone who loves to travel.  The good news it's under $30!!

There is also a USA map for those who don't leave the country very often.  This one is under $30 too.

I asked for one for Christmas, so let's see if I get one!  I am looking for frames already!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Extra Cash for Christmas

As of this post writing, there is only 66 days left until Christmas!  Crazy!  Is it just me or has this year flown by?

Anyway, are you going to pay CASH for Christmas or are you going to put it on credit cards?  I am so hoping that you said cash!  I don't know your personal finance situation so I will just show you a few places to get some cash for Christmas.

These are some survey sites and mystery shop sites that you can earn extra cash to spend for the holidays.  Even though these don't pay "that much" money, they can add up over time.  What if you were to do them for 6-10 months leading up to Christmas?  When you are mindlessly watching TV, just login and complete some.  They don't take very long.

These are legit companies that I have personally used and have personally gotten checks from.  (note:  these are accounts where I may get referral fees, some of them I don't).

Surveys from Inbox Dollars:  I have personally earned around $100.  There are lots of ways to earn money on IBD, like surveys, paid emails (just click the button), grocery coupons (I haven't done this), games, apps, etc. 

Mystery Shop companies

Sinclair Customer Metrics

Garage Sales or Consignment Stores-Clean out your garage and/or closet to make extra $$.  If you have some "nicer" stuff then I would take it to a local consignment shop to get money.  If you have random stuff, maybe have a garage sale instead.   Take a few days to make a pile of stuff and sort it out by garage sale (ask friends if they want to join you) and by consignment store. There are a ton of shops that take children's clothes too.  I personally like going to consignment stores that the stores portion of the proceeds goes towards charities that I support, but that is a personal thing.

YOU CAN DO IT!!  Even if you only earn $20-50, that is $20-50 that doesn't have to go on a credit card.  Hustle out there to be debt free. :)

Friday, October 16, 2015

LinkedIn Lawsuit-Should it be?

I received the following email today about a settlement between LinkedIn and it’s users.  It came across my phone this morning and I almost put it in the spam folder, thinking it was a spam email.  I didn’t want to open it and it get a virus on my phone, you know?  I opened it on a laptop computer and I actually read it.  Then I googled it just in case it was fake!  It turns out that it is a legit lawsuit.

Linked in had a service that when you signed up you could import your email contact list to send a note saying to connect with you.  However, LinkedIn sent two more emails to your contacts if they didn’t respond, causing “spam mail”.  In the terms of the original email contact list the user only agreed to one email being sent to their contacts, not a total of 3 if they didn’t get a response.  Thus the lawsuit.

The lawsuit pays up to $1500 per claimant, but it probably wouldn’t get that much after everyone signs up and lawyer fees are paid.  And if

I have a couple of problems with the lawsuit.
1.       Spam emails are annoying, especially if I didn’t consent to them anyway.  However, it is the original user that is getting the settlement, not the person who was spammed (even though I was added to people’s emails and did get spammed myself).
2.       Who actually reads those agreements anyway?  You are looking for a way to connect with other business professionals, not reading fine lines in user terms.  I am willing to bet that it was a lawyer or another like-minded person  (i.e. sue happy person) who filed the lawsuit.
3.       Is it fair for a company to pay the person who consented to one email to get the money when they aren’t being spammed?  I get spam emails ALL the time, do I need to expect payment for something that I can just hit one button and never see emails from that company again?
I’m not saying that the company should not be penalized.  When you do wrong, you should be justly penalized for it.  It should be noted that LinkedIn has not admitted wrong doing in this case and has since revised the terms of using the “Add Connections” feature.

I also read that the money will go to the lawyers regardless of whether or not people file claims.  I am torn whether or not to file a claim.  I think it’s a really stupid lawsuit but then I don’t think it’s a stupid lawsuit!  I think the terms of the lawsuit are 100% agreeable because LinkedIn should not have sent the email out, but then again….REALLY?!  Is it that big of a deal.  Just stop sending them!  $13 Million??!!! 

How about that money ALL go to a charity and be done with it??!!!  I think I am going to write a claim or denial for the money to all go to a charity, but I haven’t decided yet.  


Read the full email lawsuit below:

You are receiving this e-mail because you may have used LinkedIn's Add Connections feature between September 17, 2011 and October 31, 2014.
A federal court authorized this Notice. This is not a solicitation from a lawyer.
Why did I get this notice? This Notice relates to a proposed settlement ("Settlement") of a class action lawsuit ("Action") against LinkedIn Corporation ("LinkedIn") based on LinkedIn's alleged improper use of a service called "Add Connections" to grow its member base.
What is the Action about? The Action challenges LinkedIn's use of a service called Add Connections to grow its member base. Add Connections allows LinkedIn members to import contacts from their external email accounts and email connection invitations to one or more of those contacts inviting them to connect on LinkedIn. If a connection invitation is not accepted within a certain period of time, up to two "reminder emails" are sent reminding the recipient that the connection invitation is pending. The Court found that members consented to importing their contacts and sending the connection invitation, but did not find that members consented to LinkedIn sending the two reminder emails. The Plaintiffs contend that LinkedIn members did not consent to the use of their names and likenesses in those reminder emails. LinkedIn denies these allegations and any and all wrongdoing or liability. No court or other entity has made a judgment or other determination of any liability.
What relief does the Settlement provide? LinkedIn has revised disclosures, clarifying that up to two reminders are sent for each connection invitation so members can make fully-informed decisions before sending a connection invitation. In addition, by the end of 2015, LinkedIn will implement new functionality allowing members to stop reminders from being sent by canceling the connection invitation. LinkedIn has also agreed to pay $13 million into a fund that can be used, in part, to make payments to members of the Settlement Class who file approved claims. Attorneys representing the Settlement Class will petition the Court for payment of the following from the fund: (1) reasonable attorneys' fees, expenses, and costs up to a maximum of $3,250,000, and (2) service awards for the Plaintiffs up to a maximum of $1,500 each. The payment amount for members of the Settlement Class who file approved claims will be calculated on a pro rata basis, which means that it will depend on the total number of approved claims. If the number of approved claims results in a payment amount of less than $10, LinkedIn will pay an additional amount up to $750,000 into the fund. If the pro rata amount is so small that it cannot be distributed in a way that is economically feasible, payments will be made, instead, to Cy Pres Recipients selected by the Parties and approved by the Court. No one knows in advance whether or in what amount payments will be made to claimants.
You may also learn more by clicking on the following links:
If the Court gives final approval to the Settlement, this is the only way to be eligible to receive a payment.
Deadline: December 14, 2015
This is the only option that allows you to retain your rights to sue LinkedIn about its alleged improper use of Add Connections to grow its member base.
Deadline: December 14, 2015
Write to the Court about why you object to (i.e., don't like) the Settlement and think it shouldn't be approved. You may mail your written objection to Judge Koh's Case System Administrator at the United States Courthouse, 280 South 1st Street, Room 2112, San Jose, CA 95113. Alternatively, you may file your written objection in person at any location of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California.

You must also mail your written objection to Class Counsel and LinkedIn's Counsel. The address for Class Counsel is: Larry C. Russ, Esq., Russ August & Kabat, 12424 Wilshire Boulevard, 12th Floor, Los Angeles, CA 90025. The address for LinkedIn's Counsel is: Jerome C. Roth, Esq., Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP, 560 Mission Street, 27th Floor, San Francisco, CA 94105.
Deadline: December 14, 2015
The Court will hold a "Final Approval Hearing" to consider the Settlement, the request for attorneys' fees and expenses of the lawyers who brought the Action ("Class Counsel"), and the request for service awards of the plaintiffs who brought the Action ("Class Representatives").

You may, but are not required to, speak at the Final Approval Hearing about your written objection. If you intend to speak at the Final Approval Hearing, you must include your intention to do so in your written objection. Follow the procedure described above for providing your written objection to the Court as well as to Class Counsel and LinkedIn's Counsel.
Deadline: December 14, 2015
You will not receive a payment, even if the Court gives final approval to the Settlement. You will also be giving up any claims you may have against LinkedIn based on its alleged improper use of Add Connections to grow its member base. You may be eligible to receive the non-monetary benefits of the Settlement, if the Court gives final approval to the Settlement.
No deadline
More information? For more information about the Settlement and how to take the actions described above, please or write to the Settlement Administrator at Perkins v. LinkedIn Corp., Settlement, c/o Gilardi & Co. LLC, P.O. Box 808012, Petaluma, CA 94975-8012, You may also contact Class Counsel by calling (310) 979-8244.
Do Not Address Any Questions About The Settlement Or The Litigation To LinkedIn, The Clerk Of The Court, Or The Judge.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Jabba's 1 year Angel Birthday

Today marks one year that my dear baby boy went to Heaven to hang out with Jesus.  I am a little sad (OK, a lot!) but I know that he is having fun, eating a lot of catnip treats (without calories!), and hanging out on clouds.  It’s not fair to be sad when Angel birthdays are a good thing for those that get them, only us on Earth are sad.  I can celebrate with him in spirit though.

I am planning on going to my sister’s house on Sunday (Jabba is buried there) and bring cupcakes (for me and my nephews) and catnip treats for him and my sister’s cats.  Who doesn’t love a good party or a good cupcake?! 

I have been sad all year about him and other things that have happened to me but it is time for me to step out and be all that God created me to be.  I can’t live a small life anymore, I am destined for greatness.  I can choose to live in the past, future or my present.  I am going to live in the future.  Today I will release what has happened over the last few years and press on.  I think God knew that I would need some time to process what all has happened over the past few years (that hasn’t all made it to this blog) and has been preparing and clearing a path for me.

So, this weekend in honor of Jabba’s 1st Angel birthday, will YOU please join me in stepping out of your comfort zone and being the person God wants you to be?  When you take control of your life and be who you are destined to be, God will bring you to places you never thought possible.  I’m excited for the journey!  You have no right to live small when you are meant for more.

 I can’t wait for Jabba to greet me at those gates (along with Jesus, my grandfather and many others I have and will lose before I get there) and jump in my arms to celebrate me living my life to the fullest.  We only get ONE life on this Earth.  Do you want to be sad and mope about what has happened to you or would you rather leap abundantly into your future that God created before you were born?  The choice is yours to make.

Happy Angel Birthday, Jabba!!! See you in Heaven.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Where Art Thou PSL

I have been soooooooo patient.  So very patient.  This hot weather is driving me crazy but I will really miss it and be complaining (sorry, but get ready for it) when I am freakin' freezin' in Jan/Feb.

I WANT A PUMPKIN SPICE LATTE, DARN-IT!!!!!  I have been googling and stalking the Starbucks official FB page but no mention of my favorite treat in 2015.  I only get a few of them this year because I am on a #VegasDiet through our trip in early November.

If you have the scoop...let me know. ;)

Let me tell you about my favorite things about fall...

Monday, August 10, 2015

George Observatory

On Saturday night I went to the George Observatory in Brazos Bend State Park to view the stars with two of my friends.  Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh wait, wasn’t that a #BucketList item??????  Yep!!!  I am ON A ROLL! :)

We got there around 7:15 pm (it’s about 1.5 hours from Houston) and went straight to the gift shop to see if there was an ornament to add to my collection.  I try and get an ornament each time I complete a bucket list item or travel to a new place.  There weren’t any ornaments at the gift shop, but there was a patch that had the observatory, so I just bought that.  My options were a patch or a pencil, I chose the patch. :)  I can easily add a ribbon to the back to make it an ornament. 

We had a few minutes to walk around so we went to the lake/swamp to see if we could find any alligators sticking their heads out of the water.  We didn’t have any luck but we did see several huge frogs.  We were looking away from the lake when we heard a huge splash.  By the time we whipped our head around, whatever it was went back into the water, but we could still see the ripples.  It must have been either an alligator or a big fish.  Who knows.

The light poles have little information boards about different stars/planets/constellations/asteroids.

We went to a short lecture (about 30 minutes) at 8 pm where they tell you a little information about what you will be seeing in the telescopes.  A lot of it went waaaaaaaaay over my head (even though I took two semesters of Astronomy in college) but it was interesting. 

After the lecture it had turned dark and we got in line for the big telescope.  There are three dome stations (2 small and 1 large) and also several amateur people with their telescopes too.  They take a group of about 10 people in at a time to the big telescope and let you look through the really powerful machine.  After an 1.5 (ish) hour wait, we finally saw a globular cluster.  This cluster was in the Hercules constellation, but I am not sure which one it was.  I think it started with an M.

Anyway, they said that it had about half a million stars in this cluster.  They didn’t count each star because the stars are constantly moving and they can’t tell if they counted one or not.  To guesstimate the number of stars, they took a picture, counted the stars within the picture and used the size to make an educated guess as to how many stars are in the cluster.  Pretty cool.

One more thing:  BRING BUG SPRAY!!!!  OMG.  Seriously.  I was being bit by mosquito after mosquito, even through my pants!  We bought some mosquito repellent wipes but they were still snacking on us.