Stuart’s Birthday

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   Written By Bonnie, Edited By Logan Brown, Smile

For Stuart’s birthday on Friday, I took the day off to hang out with him.  Stuart wanted to go shopping so we drove to the Great Mall.  We walked the full round of the mall and Stuart brought quite a few items of outfits and shoes that he needed.  Afterward, we were tired.  It was nice to sit down at a restaurant to eat and rest.  That morning, we also had discovered that there was a new puppy on the City of San Jose website for adoption.  During our lunch break, we finally decided that we should go check him out.  More on the whole story about Buddy is on a different post.  Later, we ended up rushing from the shelter to the school to pick up the boys, then returning to shelter quickly with the boys.  The rest of the afternoon was quite busy with the new addition to the family.  We finally got dinner on the table while watching the Warriors game.  By then, I recalled that I totally forgot to pick up the birthday cake.  After a quick pick up, we sang to Stuart and had some cake.  The Warriors also won the game and moved up to the next round.  This had to be one of the busiest and most special birthday Stuart has so far.


Easter Day

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   Connor asked for an egg hunt this year, so we put one together for them.  I stuffed the eggs and Stuart hid them in our backyard.  Connor wanted a hard mode, so Stuart had to be more creative putting away the basket of eggs.  The boys had a good time hunting for them and it was hard mode indeed for some of them.  I had to join in searching as well toward the end; it was fun!  After finding all 38 eggs of them, the boys were excited to open them.  They were thrilled with some good treasure but also had to deal with some “rotten” eggs.


   In the afternoon, Rohan invited the boys over to his game truck birthday party.  It was a long party, thus Stuart and I took an advantage to run some errands before returning to hang out with some parents.  The boys had fun playing different forms of video games during these few hours before we headed home.


Las Vegas 2019 (Day 3)

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    On this last full day in Vegas, we did not have an agenda or schedule to make.  We decided to check out Circus Circus in the morning and so we took a Lyft.  The hotel/casino was more run down compared to what we remembered; we walked toward the Adventuredome instead, and this place was huge.  We decided to try Laser Tag together; it took us awhile to get started.  It was fun when we actually got in and played.  There was only a father and son in our group. But the fun time was only 5 minutes which was short.  Connor’s gun might have been malfunctioning as he had zero kills, so he was a bit bummed about it.  Logan liked it as he did well.  Afterward the boys played some video games and spent some time in the classic game area while Stuart and I just walked around.  Since Stuart and I could not find a good place for lunch, we decided to head over the Container Park in downtown (a suggestion from a driver) when the boys finished playing game.  There was a brief rain, so we ate lunch there in one of the eateries first.  Afterward the sun was out and the boys enjoyed playing with the building blocks while Stuart enjoyed a nice beer from a brewery.  It was quite relaxing sitting out in the lawn for awhile. 

imageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageimage   We were close to the Fremont Station so we walked over to check it out; there were lots of people there.  This was an interesting place with many older casinos and landmarks.  They even had people doing ziplining along this famous long rooftop, thus this was a cool walk.

    In the late afternoon after our break, we headed back out to look through Bellagio and check out their botanical garden.  Afterward, we went for ramen before walking through Caesars Palace.  While Logan and I were waiting for gelato, Stuart and Connor found this hourly show inside the mall which was pretty cool.  We made a point to see the volcano at the Mirage this time so we walked over, and the show did not disappoint the boys.  Next we also caught the Bellagio fountain show.  By then, we felt that it was time for us to take our stroll back to the hotel for the last time.  Again we had tons of steps (>23K) that day.  We spent some time in the activity room before we returned to our room.  We really enjoyed our stay at this hotel; I know I would miss the beautiful of the strip from our window.


   On Saturday, after a quick breakfast, we checked out and headed to the airport.  The boys had been asking me to play slot machine and I finally decided to play at the airport while we waited near the gate.  Stuart and I walked around some machines and I did a few spins, and finally at the poker one, I got FIVE of a kind!  I cashed out and had won a net of $17; I was happy to have this lucky earning to end our Vegas trip.

Las Vegas 2019 (Day 2)

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   After resting in the morning with breakfast in our unit, we headed out to see the shops.  We liked the Coca Cola store; everything was so cool inside.  The boys were suggested to take pictures with the polar bear, and I ended up buying more souvenir photos.  Our favorite store was definitely the M&M.  It took us some time to decide on the souvenirs for ourselves as there were so many cute things.  Logan also diimagescovered that they were about to show a short 3D film, and gathered us all to watch.  It was actually a very cute film which we enjoyed.  We then walked through New York New York, and the few stores in front of it, including Hersey.  We got ourselves quite a bit of steps before heading back to the hotel for an afternoon break.


    After the afternoon break, we took a Lyft to Mandalay Bay to check out the Shark Reef.  The tanks were nice and the collection of sharks and fish were cool.  The boys and I also got to touch some sting rays.  We only had a little bit more time to see the next section, Penguin Adventure, which turned out to be an interactive game area.  The boys enjoyed it a lot.  We quickly grabbed something to eat at Luxor before the show.  That night we had tickets for the Blue Man Group.  The boys were excited for this one and they ended up loving it.  The show had some audience interaction, and the boys were a bit nervous when one of characters walked very close and climbed over our seats.  They liked the jokes they made and the music they played.  Toward the end of the show, the entire theater was covered with toilet paper, and the boys enjoyed that part too.  After the show, Connor told us how much he loved it and wished to return.


    After the show, we just slowly headed back to our hotel on foot.  The evening strolls had been very nice despite making 20K steps again by the end of the day.  Stuart and I also had a drink at the hotel bar afterward to chill.


Las Vegas 2019 (Day 1)

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image    We had an awesome 3 day trip to Las Vegas.  We arrived on Wednesday morning, thus we had three full days there.  One of our favorite things was the hotel we stayed in, Marriott Grand Chateau; it was just one block off the mid section of the strip, and it was non casino and non smoking.  Our one bedroom unit was up on the 22nd floor with an amazing view.  I stared out our window often, and it was nice to watch the actions day and night.  We also had 2 TVs; I truly enjoyed relaxing with my shows while the boys watched cartoons during our breaks.


    Walking on the Vegas strip was eye opening for the boys.  There were lots to see; they admired the beautiful hotels and amenity, shocked by seeing the exotic attires of the street performers, and curious seeing all the gambling.  On this first day, Wednesday, we walked through several large casinos, Cosmopolitan, Aria, Planet Hollywood, Paris, Venetian and Treasure Island; we were surprised that we made it to Treasure Island where we picked up our tickets for the Cirque Du Soleil, Mystere.

   While we waited for a table at a restaurant, the boys requested Stuart to play at a slot machine so they could watch from a distance.  Stuart put in $20; he won a few dollars right away and he ended up breaking even and cashing out $20 by dinner time.  That was the extent of Stuart’s gambling on this trip.  During dinner, the boys played on the kid menu and found all 12 differences on a drawing, and won themselves an adorable plastic mug each too.  I guess it was our lucky night.


    The Mystere show was great and the boys enjoyed it.  They were fascinated by all the different circus styled performances, and they especially liked the one guy doing all the interactive jokes with the audience throughout the show.  After the show, we were hoping to catch the volcano show at Mirage on our walk back to the hotel, but unfortunately after waiting for 20 minutes we learned that it was cancelled due to the gusty wind that night.  But the rest of the walk back was comfortable in the mild temperature; we were sore though when we arrived at the hotel with > 24K steps.  We played at the activity room for awhile and watched some TV before we ended our very late night.

Here are the photos of our entire trip.

Biking then Tennis (Part 2)

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   We did it again.  On Sunday, we went for a bike ride to get to the lake and we made it.  We had a snack at the park, then we turned around to head back.  It was a bit tougher on the home stretch with the tired legs going up slight sloped hills.  Connor was complaining a bit, but when I distracted him to sing me the songs the class is practicing for the spring concert, he was riding without any issue.  We did a nice 1.3 hour ride.


    The boys went straight to play games while I went for a quick nap before the tennis lesson.  When the boys hit with the coach, Stuart and I played on our own.  My legs were tired, but we kept on going.  We decided to play a game.  Being tired actually motivated me to do better serving to avoid double serving.  We ended up with 5 vs 6 and playing another game tie at deuce, but we went out of time, and had to call it.  I was happy to play such a close game with Stuart. 


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