October at the Beach

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We spent the weekend of October 11-13th at San Elijo State Beach and it was beautiful (as you can see from the picture above). I am telling you – EVERY time we camp at the beach, I am always in complete AWE of the amazing sunsets over the Pacific Ocean.  I always pause and remember to be thankful that we live in a such a beautiful part of the country.

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As usual, the boys could not WAIT to get to the beach on Friday night.  Above, they were looking out the window as we pulled into the campground – anxiously anticipating all the friends they would have to play with for the whole weekend.

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On Friday night, we gave Nicholas his birthday gift (a few weeks early, but the timing was right). He got an awesome ‘new’ BIKE for this 6th birthday (Mommy got it slightly used from her old boss)! It’s a little big for him, but he jumped right on and started practicing. The new bike has gears and brakes on the handles (instead of the pedals).  With a little more practice, he will be able to mountain bike with Auntie Dani :)

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All our amazing kiddos at our potluck breakfast (above). Have I mentioned how FUN our camping group is?  These kids LOVE camping together (as you can see from the smiles up and down the table.  And let’s not leave out the awesome parents, too :)  One of them, in particular, can make an amazing happy hour beverage (you know who you are).

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Lucy has been a pretty good traveler so far.  She hangs out with us outside, most of the day – while we are camping.  AND – the best part – she doesn’t mind when we put her in the RV when we go down to the beach! She doesn’t even cry or bark. She just curls up on the couch and takes a nap.

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BEST CAMPING GAME EVER!

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Above: Daddy was trying to encourage AJ to ride a two-wheeler (eek! I am not ready for him to be such a BIG boy yet!)

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Above: My favorite picture from the weekend. Love those two boys.

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For the first time ever – thanks to Kristen, we had a pinata while we were camping. The kids had a blast with it!

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Unfortunately, the above picture of AJ was nearly the last from the weekend (on Saturday afternoon).  He was clearly not feeling well all afternoon and by the evening, his breathing was VERY fast and labored (you would NOT be able to tell from the picture and that sweet baby boy smile – but he was in my lap for hours and didn’t want to play with his friends)  I had to call Joe’s parents to come and pick us (AJ and I) up so we could get home for a breathing treatment.  Otherwise, we were going to have to pack up the entire camp and head home.  THANKS so much, Mom & Dad, for coming to get us — it was totally the right thing for us to be at home so AJ could sleep in his own bed (and get the medicine he needed).

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Before AJ and I left, I took one more sunset picture.  The view from our campsite was awesome.  I wish we could have stayed for another week. In fact, one of these days, I want to book a site for at least a week – and just stay down at the beach the whole time.  We have to take advantage of this beauty as much as we can — AND — it also REALLY tires out the boys. They usually sleep REALLY well after a long day of beach play. Success.

The Beach

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Another successful trip to the beach. I am not sure why I am always amazed by the beach/ocean but every time we go…I find it amazing, again.

We had a super big group at Carlsbad State Beach this weekend. I just counted and I think we ended up with 18 kids, 20+ adults, 2 dogs and a bunch of visitors. We had plenty of room for: 5 RV’s, a trailer, a tent trailer, a 5th wheel, and 3 tents. It may sound like a recipe for chaos but I assure you it wasn’t complete chaos. We did 3 pot-luck meals, campfires, bike/scooter riding, boogie boarding, sand castles building, ladder ball playing, Nerts learning and more.

It may not sound like ‘fun’ for everyone but it was an amazing way spend the weekend. I am not exactly sure how I landed this life. It seems like it’s ‘too good to be true’ – but I know it’s true because I live it!!

I will stop talking now and just post pictures (after all, that is what everyone cares more about, right?)

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Nicholas learned how to boogie board this weekend and by this morning – he was out there by himself!! He did really great!!

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I wish we could have stayed our there another week. It was wonderful.

Leaving Las Vegas

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We spent 2 nights in Las Vegas — and I think we would all agree that 2 nights was enough. I don’t think I have ever seen Nicholas SO tired. He really should have napped when we all laid down to rest :/

We headed towards the Venetian to show the boys all the canals & boats inside the hotel.

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I saw Gelato and just had to get some. The boys enjoyed it (and so did the floor and their shirts). We sat right in front of a live performance in the square – the boys thought it was pretty cool.

Our intent for the night was to see the Pirate show at Treasure Island (we heard its a lot more trashy these days, but the boys REALLY wanted to see the boats fighting).

Our timing was perfect — we were about to head over to Treasure Island and get a good spot — when — a HUGE Thunder & Lightening Storm hit Las Vegas. Everyone for “Emergency Flash Flood” warnings on their phone.

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The boys were really nervous about the storm. They kept asking how we would get back to our motorhome.

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The lightening was absolutely stunning. I have NEVER seen anything like it – and it went on for over an hour.

When it was safe to go outside – we stopped at the Mirage to watch the volcano erupt. It never did :( The boys were bummed.

We decided to try for the 10pm Pirate Show at Treasure Island — we had our front spot picked out — and then they came out to tell us the show had been cancelled due to ‘weather’. Ugh – I was sad.

We totally missed out on all the cool (free) shows. So, we headed to Tacos El Gordo for food.

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Nicholas fell asleep at the table, after eating a taco with his eyes closed. Poor kid. Vegas was too much for him. The boys did NOT like the heat either.

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We did everything we could to find shade as often as possible.

On the way back to our RV last night (at 11pm) – Joe asked Nicholas if he wanted to come back to Vegas and NCL shook his head and said “NO!! I hate this place!” Ha ha.

…..until the next time, Vegas…(because, let’s be honest…there is always a ‘next time’)

Las Vegas, NV

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Las Vegas in July brings new meaning to the phrase “Hotter than hell” (please excuse my language, but dang — I don’t know a better phrase for this desert heat).

We rolled into town yesterday afternoon with our generator running and BOTH A/C’s cranked on full blast.

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AJ slept nicely through the whole afternoon (in the cool back bedroom).

We have been parked (at Circus Circus KOA) for more than 24 hours and the A/C’a haven’t turned off once.

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Nicholas and I went right to the pool while AJ slept. The water was a nice reprieve from the 113 degree weather BUT, the pool at this campground leaves a lot to be desired :/ I don’t think it’s very clean (ick). There is hair everywhere (in the water) – and that TOTALLY grosses me out. I am pretty sure we are the ONLY Americans staying in the campground (aka. Parking lot) right now. Lots of Europeans – which doesn’t bother me at all, but Nicholas is always looking for new friends to play with and NONE of the kids in the pool were speaking English. At one point he asked me why everyone was speaking “a different language” — I had to laugh because I could tell by the look on his face that he was wondering where we had taken him.

Joe & I knew what we were getting into at the KOA. It’s expensive, it’s really not nice AT all, but — it’s on the strip. We can put up with it for 36 hours :)

We walked down to Treasure Island last night — the Buffet was recommended by the KOA desk clerk. We were dripping with sweat once we got there – so, we stayed to eat (we would not recommend this buffet). Nicholas almost fell asleep while walking home last night. He was BEGGING to go to bed.

After more swimming this morning…

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We took the bus (air conditioned) to Caesar’s and had lunch.

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We headed back to the RV for a late afternoon rest/nap time — since it’s likely we will be out late again tonight. The boys really want to see the pirate show at Treasure Island and Joe wants to show the boys the inside of the Venetian. We will see what we can get done in this HEAT!!

Lava Hot Springs, Idaho

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We spent all day yesterday in Lava Hot Springs. Our motorhome was parked right by the river and right across the street from the pool.

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Lunch time (above) — the boys enjoyed their cherries before we headed back to the pool. Daddy spent most of the day working on the AC. After hours of work – HE GOT IT WORKING!! We were all exited — driving through the desert in July with no AC was NOT sounding good. And it meant we were going to have to find a hotel room in Vegas.

Lightening & Thunder hit the area in the afternoon so they closed down all the pools/facilities. We stayed outside until the downpour happened.

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The boys watched a movie, while I read for a bit.

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The indoor pools opened back up at 7:15pm (after the storm passed). The boys all swam a bit more and then we enjoyed a baked fish dinner.

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**I would recommend visiting Lava Hot Springs if you are ever driving through. It’s GREAT fun for the family. I think next time we head up to Hagerman, we will drive over to Lava first – and stay for 3-4 days.

Joe for up at 4:45am this morning (after the train woke us up). We have been driving since 5am. We will be in St George, Utah soon. Grocery store & play time for me and the boys. Nap time for Joe.

We should make it to Vegas before dinner time.

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