Sunday, October 12, 2014

Our Family-Friendly Las Vegas Vacation (yes--it is possible)

We were so excited that the kids have a week off for fall break.  Unfortunately, Michael had a convention to go to that same week in Las Vegas.  The solution?  Go with him!  We drove up on Monday and had dinner at the hotel (Homewood Suites) and then went for a drive down the strip.  I had never been there before, and it was much bigger than I imagined.  We didn't walk around the strip with the kids at night and our hotel was off of the strip, so it went really well.  We had our breakfasts and dinner at the hotel.  Homewood Suites serves a nice breakfast every day and dinner Monday-Thursday, so that was great. 

On Tuesday, we took Michael to his convention and went straight to Circus Circus.  The kids loved the circus acts--Dave the clown and the Russian bar.  Then we went to the Adventure Dome.  We got wristbands for everyone so we could ride all day.  There were almost no lines.  I think the only waits we had were when the bigger kids rode the big roller coasters. 

Jonathan was so cute.  At first he said he didn't want to ride anything, but once he tried a couple he was hooked.  The funniest was the Frog Hopper, which bounces up and down.  Here is the video.  Watch Jonny's face at about the 7 second mark.  The rest of the video is mostly Nathaniel and I laughing. :-)  If you want to watch it, I recommend expanding it or clicking on the link below.

Waiting for the circus acts at Circus Circus.  Apparently nothing opens before 11am in Vegas. :-)

Fun on the kiddie rides

Nathaniel loved the roller coasters.  He even rode on the big roller coaster at New York New York.  Andrew wanted to, but he wasn't tall enough.

On Wednesday, we started the day at the Silverton.  I knew they had an aquarium, but I didn't know much else about it.  It turns out that it was right next to a Bass Pro Shops.  They also have mermaids, but of course we were there on the wrong day.  Next, we went to the Pinball Hall of Fame.  The kids loved it!  I gave them each their allowance of quarters and they had a blast.  There were many pinball games, as well as old 80s video games and crane games.  Finally, we ended the day exploring M&Ms World and Hershey's Chocolate World. 

Aquarium at the Silverton

This one's for you, Dad!

Pinball Hall of Fame
Many of the games were only a quarter, and the kids loved it!

Jonathan actually won a ball from the crane! 

M&Ms World

Random guy on the street dressed up as Darth Vader
We couldn't resist a picture.

Hershey's Chocolate World
Chocolate Empire State building...

...and chocolate Statue of Liberty

After we finished at Hershey's Chocolate World, which is at New York New York, we went to the roller coaster so Nathaniel could ride.  Andrew was pretty disappointed that he didn't get to go on it because he was about an inch too short.  After seeing Nathaniel's reaction, though, I think it was for the best.  And, because we had just shopped at Hershey's Chocolate World, Nathaniel got a 2-for-1 and got to ride twice!

On Thursday, we had a lazy morning.  Walking through the hotels is kind of like walking through an airport--they are so big--so we were all pretty tired.  The kids really wanted to see Caesar's Palace, so that was our main goal.  First, we went to the Venetian and saw the beautiful shops and the gondola ride.  Then, we drove over to Gold Coast for their buffet.  We ate so much!!  Then, we headed to Caesar's Palace and walked around all of the Forum Shops.  The lobby was gorgeous!  The ceilings were definitely a sight to see!  We had seen some characters on the street, so we walked to the end of the Forum Shops to go outside and have pictures taken with Mickey and Minnie and also with Iron Man and Bumblebee (from Transformers).  After we were done, Jonathan looked at me and said, "Mommy, those were costumes!"  You can't fool that kid!  He knows that the real Mickey and Minnie are at Disney, of course!

I had really wanted to show the kids the fountains at the Bellagio, but we could never time it right because they only go every hour during the day time.  On Thursday, though, we were able to drive by just at the right time for the kids to watch the fountains from the car.  They were amazing!

We checked out on Friday morning and drove home.  The drive was so beautiful.  We drove down to the Hoover Dam as well.  We didn't have time to get out and look around, but it was cool to see.

We all agree, it was a wonderful trip!!

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