Friday, April 20, 2012

Las Vegas with the Johansen Clan

After Christmas, we drove out to Las Vegas to meet up with Dave's family for the week.  We made good use of our time there and were able to see and do quite a few things.  I was convinced that we needed to take the kids to the M&M store - I thought they'd love it.  Aaaaand I was right.  What little kid wouldn't love a store devoted to candy?  The only part that was not appreciated was when we "forced" Charlie to look at the cool M&M racecar - obviously he wasn't a fan of that.  We thought he for sure would have loved it.  Grouchy Gus!  Still, the kids were in love with all of the candy and both got some M&M treats to take home. Grandpa made it extra special fun and let the kids help make some personalized M&Ms for Grandma for her birthday.  They enjoyed pushing the button and watching all the M&Ms come out. 

Trying to keep the kids entertained, we found a really neat outdoor mall that had a super nice play area.  I should have taken a picture of the maze, Charlie loved that and spent quite a while running around there.  Jill loved this slide - LOVED.  She even kind of rudely barked at another little girl a couple of times who was also using the slide - she didn't want to share!  She was super cute to watch, though we tried to give her a timeout after she barked (literally sounded like a dog barking!) at the other girl.  Timeout is such a joke at her age.  Makes no sense to her and seems to be a waste of my time.  One day when she's older, we will be better able to enforce the rules of proper sharing and the etiquette regarding not barking at other playmates.  The mall area had a train that the kids enjoyed riding with their Dad while I snuck into a couple stores for a few minutes.  Charlie also found some neat Lego Crocs at the Croc store.  He still wears them ALL the time.  (Which is good, because I didn't realize how much brand new crocs cost until that purchase.)

Another day, we hit up the Hoover Dam with Dave's parents and Kim.  I had never been before so it was neat to take the tour and understand what an amazing accomplishment this is.  It is SO big.  I had no idea.  Charlie slept through the tour (stayed in the car with Grandma) and then joined us later to walk around a little bit.  The heights scare me a bit, but the views were definitely impressive and worth seeing. 

But, the biggest highlight of the trip was probably taking Charlie to see the Tournament of Kings show at the Excalibur.  He wasn't so into his dinner and eating with his hands (though he gulped down the root beer no problem) - but he just loved the show.  All the horses, and the jousting, and the cheering.  It was right up his alley.  Grandpa treated all of us to the show and it was a fun memory.  Dave and I even got caught up in the excitement and decided to buy Charlie a $12 light up sword - that broke 2 days later.  They were walking around the aisles selling them before the show started and Dave thought Charlie might get scared during the show and that the sword would help him to feel safe.  (cause he could totally protect himself with it)  ? ok Dad - :)   (I just think boys of all ages must love fancy swords.)  Anyway, we were in Team Russia!  Jon, Danielle, and Cody also joined in the fun that night.  Grandma kindly stayed home with baby Jill who probably would have been a handful to bring along.

Another highlight was seeing Jerry Seinfeld.  We went with Dave's parents and enjoyed the funny jokes - he's definitely a great comedian!  We rounded out the trip celebrating Grandma's birthday and Dave and I also were able to get a Temple trip in.  It was neat to show Charlie the temple after -since we had never taken him to see a Temple yet.  The Las Vegas Temple is very unique with it's angular design.  It's beautiful inside too - as all temples are.  We are grateful that Kim, Devin, Danielle, Cody, and Jon were willing to watch our kiddos for us so we could go.

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