I’m back! Vegas was so much fun. As with all vacations, it went by wayyyy too fast.
It only took us a little over four hours to get there, including a stop at the outlet malls in Barstow. God bless Old Navy and their clearance rack!
I made sure to bring plenty of snacks, naturally. Even though I wasn’t actually hungry, there’s just something about being in a car for a long period of time that requires food, right?
Peanut butter and banana pita for was consumed for lunch-
Along with a bag of chips. (Yes… the entire bag)
And the rest of my sister’s Fiberful pieces. I could have easily eaten the whole bag. Good thing she got to them first!
After dropping off our stuff at the hotel and visiting my cousin and her family, my dad, sister and I headed to Namaste, an Indian restaurant near the downtown area. We found this place on Yelp on the way over, and it did not disappoint!
We started off with some crispy bread and coriander and mango chutney. (Sorry for the horrible pictures, the lighting was not conducive to food photography!)
We also got a side of vegetable pakoras. I can say that without a doubt that these were the BEST pakoras I have ever eaten. We all regretted only ordering one serving!
Luckily, our main courses were even better. They had a whole vegetarian section on the menu, which was really helpful. I was tempted to get my favorite- palak paneer- but instead I chose the malai kofta- dumplings of mashed potatoes, cheese and vegetables in a creamy onion sauce, garnished with coriander.
With the exception of my friend’s aunt’s Indian cooking, this was the best Indian meal I’ve ever had. I mean, really- it had potatoes and cheese. How bad could that be?
I ate the entire dish, plus a little rice and a piece of paneer naan. I snuck a few bites of my sister’s dish, which was almost as good as mine 🙂 The only thing that could make this meal better was karaoke. The owner of the restaurant randomly turned on a karaoke machine and started singing in the middle of our meal! She sang ‘Wind Beneath My Wings,’ ‘My Heart Will Go On,’ and ‘I Will Always Love You’ in a row. Totally living out my karaoke fantasy right there. I was pretty tempted to get up there and start singing, but I refrained… this time.
After dinner, we headed to Fremont Street to see the sights and do a little gambling. Well, I didn’t. I am way too frugal to even put a dollar in the machine! My sister played a Star Wars machine and did pretty well! As soon as she was up a few dollars, I was pretty much screaming at her to walk away before she lost it, but she stuck it out and made 20 bucks!
Fremont Street was pretty cool. They had ziplining! I definitely want to try it one day, but I’d rather do it some place in nature… and I was wearing a dress.
Our hotel didn’t serve breakfast, so we picked up a box of cereal and milk to eat in the hotel. Thank goodness for fridges in the rooms! I got a knockoff of Kashi Go Lean Crunch, which tasted almost exactly like the real thing for half the price. I had a little bit more after this bowl and some oatmeal squares too, along with a vanilla yogurt. I’m getting used to eating a lot of protein for breakfast- I couldn’t get full!
My dad and I hit the gym in the hotel for a little exercise before heading out. They only had two elliptical machines and a treadmill, and the ellipticals were really funky, so I did some incline walking on the treadmill for half an hour. I was surprised by how much of a workout you can get by cranking up the incline!
I had packed some brown rice and lentil casserole for an emergency meal, which turned out to be a good move.
My cousin and her husband took my sister and I and her 5 year old daughter to Mt. Charleston to see the snow. I had no idea that something that looked like this was so close to Vegas!
I am a little obsessed with seeing snow, so I was pleased as punch. This made me so excited to move to Colorado!
Uh, as long as I don’t have to deal with this.
And I will probably need proper shoes. Hey, I didn’t know I was going to be seeing snow!
But seriously, how could you not want to be surrounded by this all day?
We didn’t stay too long because my grandparents got to town that day. We went back to my cousin’s apartment and visited with them, my aunt, and my cousin’s other daughter. She is almost one and is a chubby little bundle of love. I don’t feel comfortable posting pictures of anyone because I didn’t ask their permission, but I wish you could see her kids. They are precious!
We walked to Panda Express for dinner. My family is nothing if not classy. My sister looked up vegetarian options online as we were walking, and we saw that they had an eggplant tofu dish that we could eat. Unfortunately, this restaurant didn’t have it! My sister is a pescetarian, so she got shrimp, but I was pretty much SOL. I don’t really like rice or chow mein, so although I could have gotten that with some vegetables, I didn’t really want to pay for something that I didn’t love. Instead, I stopped by the hotel after and ate some more chips and cereal. Could I have done better? Sure, but I wasn’t exceptionally hungry and I didn’t want to put a dent in anyone’s plans by demanding we go to another restaurant / stop anywhere else so I could get something. It happens! This was the sunset we got to see while we were walking. Heavenly.
My cousin, her husband, and my sister and I went to the Strip to walk around that night. Can you believe that it was my first time in Vegas as a 21 year old and we didn’t get carded anywhere?! Figures. I was the designated driver so I didn’t get any drinks. My drink of the night was Emergen-C. Two sicknesses in two weeks? Not cool!
I did finish my sister’s strawberry daiquiri, which was delicious. It didn’t taste like alcohol at all, which is just the way I like it 🙂 A little more gambling happened and everyone walked away a little richer. The Star Wars machine has been good to my sister!
Unfortunately, I didn’t feel any better when I woke up. I was feeling a little feverish and I could feel a serious cough coming on, so I decided to go with my philosophy of working out while I’m sick and stay in bed while my dad and sister went to the gym. No regrets!
We went to CityCenter, which is all sorts of super fancy stores and casinos that I think is part of MGM- I could be wrong. All of the restaurants were ridiculously overpriced, so we hit up the food court for lunch. I went to Rubio’s, where I was pleased to see they had the nutrition info listed on the menu for all of the items. I got the Health Mex burrito with veggies. It came on a whole grain tortilla, which was awesome. I didn’t eat the chips- I’m not a fan of chips that come from restaurants for some reason.
The rest of our time was spent window shopping and looking at things we will never be able to afford.
We got on the road at about 2:30 (it took us an hour to find our car- I wish I was kidding) and made it home by 7. I only had to drive for two hours- score! My ‘dinner’ was an apple, random chips from TJ’s courtesy of my sister, pretzels and some kefir, dried cranberries, cereal and PB I just ate. I think I need some real food tomorrow! Some vegetables would probably be a good start…
What did you do for MLK day? The thing I love the most about national holidays is the specials they play on the History Channel. MLK bio, here I come!