Monday, March 29, 2010

Fun! Fun! Fun!

It's Monday afternoon, and I can't believe that in just a couple of hours, the H**ks will be leaving to fly back home. It has been such fun, but way too short. We sure have managed to squeeze a lot of activity into a short time.

Wednesday - They arrived at 1:59 PM and we were off to our favorite fast food restaurant In and Out Burger for a late lunch.

Back here at the condo, they unpacked and we spent some time catching up on the news. Jim made a wonderful meatloaf and Brian and Gretchen came for dinner. We played a new game after dinner, but everyone was pretty tired out. Remember it was three hours later for our guests.

Thursday we decided to take a trip to the Strip so L&J could see the casino and hotels at the new City Center. We spent a good amount of time just meandering around this fabulous new location.

While we were at City Center, we checked out the Viva Elvis theater and store. Jim and I are going to see this show in a couple of weeks. I'll let you know what I think once I've seen it. It is the latest Cirque show in Las Vegas.

The afternoon found us at Mandalay Bay at the Shark Reef. The picture we had taken is great, but I don't have my scanner with me. You'll just have to take my word for it.

Terry Fator and His Cast of Thousands was our evening's entertainment.

This was an outstanding show. He is a multi-talented entertainer.

Friday after a wonderful lunch with Brian and Gretchen....

we took a ride out to Hoover Dam to check on the progress of the new road and bridge which will bypass the dam.

L&J went off to see "O", the Cirque water show at the Bellagio on Friday night.

Saturday was a day in the desert. Jim and I had heard about this date ranch way out in the middle of the desert and decided we should take a day trip out there. We drove for many miles through the desolation of the desert before Linda said, "If we were stranded out here, I wonder which of the four of us would turn to cannibalism first?" Now I ask you, what kind of question is that? I was really happy when we approached the farm and found out they sold dates, date cookies and date bread.

By Saturday evening, we were exhausted and spent a quiet evening at home.

After church and lunch on Sunday, we drove out to Red Rock Canyon, a national wildlife center for some sightseeing and hiking. It was a perfect day weather wise and we had a delightful hike through the red rocks. On the way out of the park, we were treated with a burro sighting.

No trip to Vegas would be complete without an evening at the Fountains of Bellagio. We arrived just about dark and stayed for six shows. What a wonderful way to spend a Sunday evening.
Today was breakfast with Brian and Gretchen at the Sunrise Cafe. Then it was off to gamble for L and me. We each had $20 that we were willing to part with. You notice I said we were willing to part with it...not to win with. Actually, in the end, Linda came out $2 ahead and I came out $3.57 ahead.
As I write this L has gone in to change into her travelling clothes. In about 30 minutes we will be leaving for the airport. I'm sad, but I should just be grateful for this great time of fun and fellowship we have shared.
~Hippo Hugs~

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The H**ks are coming!

In just a little over an hour, our dear friends the H**ks will be arriving at McCarren International Airport. We are really excited. You remember the H**ks, don't you. If not, here is a little reminder

This picture was taken last year at Lake Las Vegas when they visited us. BTW, Lake Las Vegas has turned into a virtual ghost town. The economy really hit this resort hard. Two of the three golf courses have closed, the casino and one hotel have closed and houses are sitting empty. What a shame.

We have lots of fun things on the agenda for their stay. We have tickets to see Terry Fator. We plan to hike some, take a day trip, have lots of good food, and of course, LAUGH. We seem to do a lot of that when we are together. Linda and I may even have to hit some penny slot machines.

Stay tuned for updates and pictures.

~Hippo Hugs~

Friday, March 19, 2010

Go! Go! Go! Joseph

Once again, I am sitting here wondering what has been keeping me from posting here on my blog. One reason is that I did go back to NY last week to see the high school musical and visit with my friends, Bruce and Shelly.

I'll quickly give an update on Bruce and Shelly, and ask for continued prayers for them. Shelly has finished with her chemotherapy and came through with flying colors, which I totally expected. Bruce, however, is making slower progress than had been projected. Although they did send him home from rehab, he is still totally dependant on the care of others. The talk, now, is that he may be readmitted to the rehab facility. We are all praying for the best for Bruce.

As you can imagine, the trip home was a little disappointing in regard to Bruce. However, the musical was absolutely outstanding. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat has always been one of my favorite musicals. Let me tell you, I was not disappointed in this production.

I have seen Joseph at least four times previous to this. One being with Donny Osmond as Joseph and I enjoyed this as much as any of the others. Those kids, under the direction of Shelly, did a professional and outstanding job. One might say I am a little prejudiced, but if you had been there and seen this show, you would agree with me.

These four girls shared the part of the Narrator and were just wonderful. Mackenzie (in blue) and Becca (in olive) are from our church. This was another reason I wanted to go home and see the show. I love these girls.

It's hard to believe that a school district of less than 1000 students can find this many boys to participate in a musical. And they were such fun!

Joseph is a 14 year old sophomore with the voice of an angel.

Yancy, as Pharaoh, had the audience in the palm of his hand.

The costumes and sets, constructed and sewn by parents and students were pure eye candy.

I imagine you have figured out by now that I am pretty proud of our little school district and their music department.

~Hippo Hugs~

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Most years the Oscar's don't mean much to Jim and I as we haven't seen many of the nominated movies. However, for the past couple of years, we have been attending movies quite regularly. We became members of Regal Cinemas and have a rewards card. We usually make it a habit to go the Tuesday afternoon shows because on Tuesdays we can get $1 popcorn with our rewards card. Hence, this year, we felt we had a good overview of the nominees.

We didn't see all of the ten nominated movies for Best Picture. We did manage to see Avatar, Up in the Air, The Blind Side, Inglorius Basterds, Julie and Julia, Crazy Heart, along with a host of other okay movies this past year. Jim doesn't do animation, so I missed UP. I will probably rent that sometime when he isn't going to be home. Precious and Hurt Locker we missed by choice. We are of the belief that the movies we see should entertain us, not depress us. So, we skip some. I don't say that to be controversial, maybe I'm just shallow. Whatever.

All in all we enjoyed the Oscar's show. We both said at the beginning that the best part might just be Steve and Alec ,and they were surely entertaining and witty.

Sandra Bullock was my sentimental favorite for Best Actress.
I loved her in The Blind Side. I thought she was feisty and compassionate all at the same time. The story was uplifting, all the more because it is true. Nevertheless, I thought Meryl Streep as Julia Child

was absolutely the best I've ever seen her. In my opinion (still loving Sandra) I think Meryl should have had the Oscar.

We saw George Clooney in Up In The Air , who showed up for the Oscar's looking like he needed a hair cut. But I digress. We also saw Jeff Bridges

in Crazy Heart. In our opinion, there was no contest. Jeff Bridges did a phenomenal job in portraying Bad Blake. And though neither one of these guys got the girl in the end, somehow I left Crazy Heart with a light heart. Not so with Up in the Air.

Christopher Waltz was our choice for Inglorious Basterds. We both agreed that we hated him the moment he came on the screen. What a superb acting job.

I was really torn about Best Supporting Actress. I really thought both of the women in Up In the Air did a great job and would have been happy about either one. Once again, I had a sentimental favorite in Maggie Gyllenhaal.

who, of course, didn't win. And I think there was one real mistake made by the Academy in not nominating Amy Adams for her role in Julie and Julia.

We found her to be completely enjoyable and believable.
Although I found the scenery in Avatar to be absolutely delicious to the senses , I guess I didn't think it would get the nod for best picture. I do feel a little sorry for James Cameron who spent ten years of his life on this movie, only to be beaten out by his ex-wife.
Well, for what it's worth, that's my opinion. I guess that and a buck will buy you a pack of gum.
~Hippo Hugs~

Sunday, March 7, 2010

A Rainy Sunday in Henderson

If you are a regular reader of my blog, you must have been wondering where I've gone? The short answer is - nowhere. The longer answer might be, in part, to "From the Hippo's Pen" which has a link posted here on this blog.
A couple of weeks ago, I decided to take a challenge, along with some other bloggers, to Write4Ten. The challenge is to write for ten minutes every day on a topic chosen by another member of the group.

I've really enjoyed this challenge and have found it to be a good discipline. I have managed to write most of the days since then. Well, except for the days when I didn't have any internet connectivity. So, as I've been so faithful to that project I've, sadly, let my own blog go. I'm going to do my best to correct that lapse in the days ahead.
A lot of great stuff has been happening here. My sister-in-law and niece were here visiting us for a week. What a good time we had.

We spent lots of time seeing the sights on The Strip. Although gambling was not on the agenda, we visited a lot of the casinos to see the themes, statues, flowers, fountains and other sights. Kacy has a new camera and had a great time snapping away.

We managed to have a meal with Brian and Gretchen. This night, we also took in a UNLV basketball game. Lots of fun. It's always fun when your team wins. GO REBELS!!!

What's a trip to Las Vegas without seeing Hoover Dam. Although we have been out there several times, Jim is amazed over and over again by this engineering marvel. In the background is the partially finished bridge which will allow the highway to by pass the dam.

We spent an afternoon at Red Rock Canyon. What a great day that was. Not only did we see the beautiful rock formations of the canyon, but we saw wild burros. We were really hoping that we would see some for Deb and Kacy. We were about a mile from the park exit when, there they were.

Kacy really liked Red Rock and says she wants to come back when she has time to hike among the rocks.

Deb and Kacy left for home on Tuesday and while Jim helped Brian with a home improvement project, I tried to catch up from trying to keep up with a 16 year old.

We've spent the week resting and catching up. Today is a cloudy, rainy day in the desert. One of those days where you want to curl up and read. I think I'll do just that.

~Hippo Hugs~