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Christmas At The Venetian

The Venetian is my favorite resort and hotel in Las Vegas.  I absolutely love it, and have only stayed there once.  Every time I go to Vegas, I want to stay there, but sadly price wise…I have to stay away.  I wonder how packages from the UK are so affordable to other countries, including to the USA, yet we can’t seem to get any bargains like this from here?  For instance, my sister just booked a trip to the USA where she stayed 4 days in New York, and 4 days in Las Vegas (during this summer). Her hotel in New York was the Marriott Marquis right in Times Square, and her accommodation in Las Vegas was the Venetian.  Her price for the trip was £1,000 UK pounds per person (for a family of four), and this includes airfare and hotel cost.  When I flew to the UK in 2014 (in the summer) it cost me $1,500 per person (for a family of four), and this did not include the cost of hotels.  I am so jealous, ‘cos I want to stay at the Venetian for four days!  However, since it’s my sister….I’m happy she is staying at one of the best places in Las Vegas.

Last time I wrote in May about Las Vegas, I told you I would include pictures of inside the Venetian, so here we go.  Sorry, it has taken me such a long time to get around to it.  I even fit one more trip to Las Vegas since Christmas  – this summer – not the same time as my sister unfortunately, and I did not stay at the Venetian 😦 .  Here are the pictures that include Christmas inside the Venetian, and some that were taken this summer.  Oh, and the gelato – it’s absolutely delicious!  Incase you are wondering, Christmas is a great time to be in Las Vegas, and especially at the Venetian.

 

 

Venetian Magic

Venetian Magic, Venetian splendor!  Oh, how I love the Venetian grandeur.  This hotel/resort in Las Vegas, Nevada, is my absolute favorite out of all of them there.  I have stayed at the Venetian many years ago, and absolutely loved it!  I wish I could always stay there when ever I visit Las Vegas.  Even when I stay elsewhere, I make it a point to go visit the Venetian.  If you can’t go to Venice, at least go to the Venetian – it’s a bit of the real thing.  Here are some pictures:

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

My kids outside the Venetian, last Christmas

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

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The Venetian, Las Vegas, NV

Isn’t this place pretty?  Isn’t it magical?  Wish I could have a permanent suite there!  These were all pictures taken outside of the Venetian, next time I will show you some pictures taken inside.

 

Christmas In Las Vegas

Christmas in Las Vegas was a new experience for us, and a rather nice one.  We spent Christmas, 2015 in Vegas, and thoroughly enjoyed it.  Here are some more pictures, these were nearly all taken on Christmas day, 2015.  The last one was taken on Christmas Eve at The Carnival World Buffet which we went to prior to going to Christmas Eve mass at Our Lady of Wisdom Church.

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Bellagio, Las Vegas

We didn’t stay at Bellagio though as much as I would have liked to.  Actually, if you ask me which place I would like to stay at my number one choice is Venetian, and number two is Bellagio.  We actually stayed at the Hilton Grand Vacations Club Resort of which I am a member (through my timeshare ownership).  I won’t even go into my tea-bag dilemna that I had there – can you believe they didn’t have regular black tea?  I certainly had tea withdrawal!  Enough said of that for the time being, other than to say you hotels should never just cater to coffee lovers, there’s tea lovers too!   My view wasn’t too bad though.

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View from Hilton Grand Vacations Resort, Las Vegas Blvd

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View from Hilton Grand Vacations Resort, Las Vegas Blvd

We had brunch at the Paris Hotel’s Le Village Buffet, I will show you pictures of that separately in another post. Here are pictures of the Bellagio, where we spent the majority of our Christmas day, just strolling around – what a beautiful Christmas display!

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Bellagio, Las Vegas

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Bellagio, Las Vegas

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Bellagio, Las Vegas

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Bellagio, Las Vegas

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Bellagio, Las Vegas

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Bellagio, Las Vegas

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Bellagio, Las Vegas

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Bellagio, Las Vegas

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Bellagio, Las Vegas

We had Christmas Eve lunch at The Carnival World Buffet at Rio

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Carnival World Buffet at Rio, Las Vegas

We ate a lot in Vegas.  My kids talked me into getting them the Buffet Pass which cost $55 per person for 48 hours.  So we started the pass at around 5pm on Christmas Eve and it lasted until Boxing Day at 5 pm.  Therefore, we were able to use it for meals over 3 days, but had to time the last meal on Boxing Day to be in the line for the meal before 5 pm.  If you can time it properly, it works out well.  All the meals and drinks that you want are included in this price (except alcohol of course) – but you will be sure to put on a few pounds!  I will post more pictures of Las Vegas soon.  I can’t believe it’s already April, and I’m just getting around to doing this post now.  Where does time go to?

 

Christmas Eve In Las Vegas

I’ve spent New Year in Las Vegas, and summer in Las Vegas, but not Christmas in Las Vegas, so last Christmas we tried it, and we liked it!

There are less crowds in Vegas in Christmas, than there are at New Year.  Also, when it’s New Year, it’s just not the best place for kids in all that noisy, raucous Vegas celebration – what with the drinks and the drunks, and well…..let’s say I think Christmas was a little more mellow in Vegas.

Have you ever associated Las Vegas with Christmas? Or have you ever even considered it to be a good place to celebrate such a joyous occasion?  Well, I think our Christmas in Vegas in 2015 was spectacular, partly, because we found a beautiful church to celebrate Christmas Eve in.  I am Sikh, but I like all kinds of churches, temples (including Hindu temples, as well as Sikh temples) and have even enjoyed visiting Mosques or at least taking pictures of them, see this link.  The church we visited is an Italo-Greek Byzantine Catholic Church called Our Lady of Wisdom, located on 2120 Lindell Road, Las Vegas, NV  89146, only about 5 minutes drive from the Strip on Las Vegas Boulevard.  It is such a truly beautiful, spectacular church, and is very European looking – I could not believe I was in the USA while I was in this church, it was such a wonderful feeling that the church gave me.  Here are some pictures:

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

I managed to get my two daughters in the picture

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

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Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

Our Lady of Wisdom Church, Las Vegas

I don’t really think I was supposed to be taking pictures at the church, but I think it was too beautiful to not take pictures.  I would love to be at this church every Christmas Eve, too bad it’s not in San Diego!

 

A little bit of Italy, or a lot of Italy

When I need a little bit of Italy – I go to Little Italy in San Diego.

Little Italy, San Diego

Little Italy, San Diego

and when I need a bit more of Italy, then it’s off to Las Vegas, where I can get a little more of Italy at the Venetian

The Venetian, Las Vegas

The Venetian, Las Vegas

and when I need a lot of Italy, I have to go to the real place – the one and only Italy!

Venice, Italy

Venice, Italy

Trevi Fountain, Rome

Trevi Fountain, Rome

How To Cook A Turkey!

Well, it’s that time of year.  I can’t resist showing you some of what my little girl’s classmates in Kindergarten wrote for a project on “How To Cook A Turkey”.  I hope this isn’t plagiarizing as I’m listing the work of little 4, 5 and even 6 year olds (there’s a mixture of ages in this Kindergarten class)  – but when I first read this, I couldn’t help but laugh.  I don’t want to give you their names or even the name of the school, but how about their initials?   By the way, one of the set of instructions is also from my little cutie!  So here are the kindergartners’ instructions on how to make a turkey:

“First, you get a turkey from a store. Then you use a wipe to make sure it is all clean.  Then you put some strawberries on it.  You put it in the oven for minutes.  Then you eat it!”   (T.L.)

“First, you get a turkey from in the wild.  Then you use water from the lake to clean it.  Then you put some sauce on it.  You cook it in a pan in the kitchen on the cooker for 1 minute.  Then you eat  it!” (B.C.)

“First, you get a turkey from the supermarket.  You use water from the sink to wash it and use a towel to dry it.  Put spices on top of it.  Go to the woods to find a turkey when you see one you catch it and then ou take it home with you.  Turn the pan on and put the turkey in it.  Flip it over when it’s white.  First blue fire temperature About 10 min. Take the turkey out and let it cool down.  Serve it.” (C.B.)

“Go to the Thanksgiving, look all around, and get a turkey.  Wash the turkey with water in the bathroom.  Put an eye on it.  Next, put in the pan and put it on the warm fire for 4 hours.  Finally, you just eat it!” (C.L.)

“First, you get a turkey from the Thanksgiving store.  Next, you wash it in your sink with your hands.  Then you put toppings on it, such as frosting and sprinkles.  Cook it in the oven on 4 degrees for 5 seconds.  Finally, eat it with a fork.” (A.E.)

“First, you get a turkey from the farm.  You need to wash it with a towel in the bathroom.  Next, chop the turkey.  Then you put it in a pot on the warm fire for 5 minutes.  You then chop it again and eat it!” (L.K.)

“First, you get a turkey from a special store.  Use water and a rag in a big pan in the sink to clean it.  Next you put oil on it.  Cook the turkey on the stove in a pan on 50 degrees.  Cook the turkey for 1 hour.  Finally, let it cool down and then eat it!” (B.K.)

Okay, now I will give you a break and present you with two pictures:

First, a picture of a turkey that I made:

Thanksgiving Day Turkey

Then this is a picture taken of a scrumptious Thanksgiving Day dinner

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Now let’s continue with more instructions:

“First, you need to get a turkey from outside.  Wash the turkey with your hands in the sink.  You cook the turkey in the toaster on 10 degrees for 1 hour.  Finally, you eat it!”  (R.A.)

“First, you go to Trader Joes to buy a turkey.  Next you rip the skin off and put oil on it.  Then you put it on the oven on 50 degrees for 60 minutes.  Finally, you put good stuff on it like salad dressing and then you eat it.” (C.B.)

“First, you go to Jimbos to get a turkey.  Then you sanitize it with a special spray.  You put cheese, and a little lettuce on the turkey.  Cut the turkey in small pieces.  Before you cook it take out the bones.  Cook the turkey in the oven on 60 degrees for 40 hours.  You can play with toys while you are waiting.  Put a warm towel over it when it comes out of the oven.  Make rice and dumplings and brocolli and cheeseburger.  Enjoy!”  (I. S.)

“First, buy a turkey at the store – Sprouts.  Use a knife, and you scrape the stuff off.  Next, put soy on it.  Put the turkey on the pan in the kitchen.  Make sure it is really hot – 58 degrees for 1 minute.  Eat it!”  (L. C.)

“First, you go to the store (supermarket).  Next, wash the turkey in the sink with a washcloth and soap.  You need to put some spices like salt on the turkey.  Cook it on the stove for 2 hours and 15 minutes.  Finally, let it cool then you put it on a plate and eat it!”  (A. G.)

“First, you get a turkey from the farm.  Use water to clean the turkey.  Cook the turkey on the stove.  Eat it!”  (A. R.)

“First, you need to catch a turkey outside or buy one at the store.  Get a knife and scrape the dirt off.  Then put spice on the turkey.  Put the turkey in a pot and put it on the stove.  Cook the turkey for 15 minutes.  Then you eat it!”  (C.K.)

“First, you get a turkey from the store – Thanksgiving store.  Then you wash it with a sink and soap and water.  Next, you cook the turkey in the oven on 30 degrees for 40 hours.  Then you just eat it!”  (J. P.)

“First, you get a turkey at the turkey store.  Next, use a wipe to clean the turkey.  Then, put bread, potatoes, and salad on the turkey.  Cook the turkey in the oven – it should be way hot.  Keep it in the oven for about 20 minutes.  Finally, you eat it!”  (T. G.)

“First, you get a turkey from the store.  You need to clean the turkey with water.  Put the turkey in the oven.  Then you eat it!”  (W. H.)

“First, get a turkey at the store – Trader Joes.  Next, put it in the washing machine to clean it.  Cook the turkey in the oven on 25 degrees for 1 hour and 60 minutes.  Finally, take it out and eat it!”  (B. M.)

“First, you need to get a turkey at the store – Jimbos.  then you take the stuffing out and take the bones out.  Next, put oil on the turkey.  Cook it in the oven on 1 degree for 13 minutes.  Finally, put it on a tray, put it on a plate and then you eat it!”  (D. M.)

“First, you need to get a turkey at the store – Target.  Then you need to wash it in the dishwasher or the sink.  Cook the turkey in the oven on 40 degrees for 60 minutes.  Then you take it out and let it cool.  Finally, you put it on a plate, cut it and put it on the table.”  (E. M.)

“First, you need to get a turkey from the store – Vons.  Next you wash it in the sink with water.  Cook the turkey in the oven on 7 degrees for 4 minutes.  Finally, eat it!”  (E. F.)

Did you like the variety of instructions?  I think we can gather from what they wrote that these little people know the stores that their parents shop at, and obviously participate in some of the routines of their parents such as the shopping.  But where did they get the idea that turkeys are washed in the dishwasher or washing machine, or that you cook the turkey for 1 minute or on the other extreme 40 hours?    Also, please, please ……if you follow these instructions….don’t cook the turkey on just 4 degrees or 10 degrees!  You might be waiting until next Thanksgiving!  Whatever you do, and however you cook your turkey……cook it well, I like to cook it on 325 or 350 degrees for at least 8 hours.  I’ve even put a turkey in at night in the oven on a very low temperature such as 225 degrees, and cooked it overnight and there is no better smell to wake up to (other than coffee).

If you need a little bit of a Fall or Thanksgiving atmosphere other than turkey pictures, I think these two pictures taken a couple of years ago in Las Vegas should get you in the spirit!

Thanksgiving Time - Las Vegas

Thanksgiving Time – Las Vegas

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Thanksgiving Time – Las Vegas

Happy Thanksgiving!

Dreaming of Las Vegas Now That The Holidays Are Approaching

The holidays are nearly here, and when I think of where I want to spend Thanksgiving, I always think of Las Vegas.  My favorite place in Vegas is the Venetian, but of course I love Caesar’s and the Bellagio too.  Here are just a few pictures.

The Venetian, Las Vegas

The Venetian, Las Vegas

Venetian, Las Vegas

Venetian, Las Vegas

The Venetian - Las Vegas Blvd

The Venetian – Las Vegas Blvd

Caesars Palace, Las Vegas

Caesars Palace, Las Vegas

The Bellagio, Las Vegas

The Bellagio, Las Vegas

The Bellagio, Las Vegas

The Bellagio, Las Vegas

 

Fashion Show Shopping Mall, Las Vegas

Fashion Show Shopping Mall, Las Vegas

More pictures of Las Vegas can be found here.

Of course, I dream of visiting London too during the holidays, but that dream will have to perhaps become reality next year instead.  Anyway, hope you are all dreaming of your holidays and making plans, the holidays will be here before you know it!