When I returned from our vacation in Vegas, I had to get ready for my visit to Utah for CKU-Provo. This was my scrapbooking get away I’ve been wanting to go to for years. I ended up joining a dorm so I would have people to interact with during my stay. I never thought that my dormmates would be so much fun. My first dormmate, Melannie, I meant for the first time at the airport. It turns out that she leaves in Morgan Hill which is about 30 minutes from my house. She was on the same flight as me. The funny part is that I was in row 2C and she was 3B. So we just asked the person that was supposed to be sitting by me to switch seats so we could just sit together. It worked out great.

This is a picture of me and Melannie on the airplane.

 When we got to Utah, I actually had to wait to get my rental car, which worked out since I had to pick up 2 of my dormmates that were arriving about an hour later. I originally signed up for a compact car, but ended up getting a mini-SUV at the same cost as the compact car. This car was perfect size for our luggage and all the bags we ended up getting from the different scrapbook stores we visited.

When I picked up my dormmates, Ellen and Tracy, we started down the road to our numerous stops. Now, you have to realize that Utah is the scrapbook captiol of the world. They have so many stores, that it’s nearly impossible to visit all of them in the time allowed. You really do need to get there at least 2 days earlier just to visit everything. But anyways, we stopped at 4 stores before we got to our hotel. I was so happy that I actually got a room at the host hotel instead of down the road. It made life so much easier. The three of us got to the hotel in time to check in with CKU and get our hotel room. It turns out that Melannie also arrived at the same time so I got to get a room on the same floor as her. We ended up going out to dinner that first night together at the Spagetti Factory which was located at a mall where one of the scrapbook stores we were going to visit was located.

There was just one store I had to go to when I was in Utah and that was Archiever’s. This store is one large store just for scrapbooking.  I was so excited when we finally got to go in there.  I think that first night we spent about 3 hours there. It was crazy. The crazy part is that I think I went back to this store about 3 times. I just love it. I so wish that Gary and I could go back to Utah just so I could go back in there.  That store is just awesome. It truly is my favorite.

Once we finally got back to the hotel, we had to meet up with our other dormmates. We distributed all of the different items so that everyone would have their things.

On Thursday, everyone stayed in one room and all of the teachers moved around us. It was a great because you didn’t feel rushed to have to go stand in line for the next class. During this time, I found out that my secret sister that I was exchanging little gifts with was also in my homeroom. Her name is Denise Thomas.

It was great to meet her early on so that I could say hello to her whenever we ran into each other.

During that same time, I found out that my secret sister that was spoiling me was also in my homeroom. Her name is Emily Irwin. We plan to have lunch together that day as well, which was great especially since I didn’t know anyone else in the room.

After the homeroom, we had to go back to our rooms to get ready for the dorm performances. Our dorm was one of three that was picked to do a song. Our dorm name was the Scrapin’ Bees, so our theme was bees. Our song was Bees just wanna have fun to the song of Cyndi Lapers Girls Just Wanna Have Fun. Since we had to perform on stage we need to have costumes made. This is what our costume was:

It came out great. Everyone had to do something for the costume. I signed up to do the name tags, which I thought came out great. It turns out that we came in third. But oh well, I had a blast.

After we performed, we then had additional classes during the crop that night. It was so overwhelming, but awesome.

On Friday, I had my album track which was called Story of Us. This is basically an album about Gary and I. I was so determined to get this album completed. I just never realized how much work was invovled with it. There was so much painting involved, that no one could take their lunch break because there just wasn’t enough time. Would I take another class from Rusty Pickle again, in a heartbeat. It was a blast and I actually learned a lot. That night, was yet again, more classes during the crop. I believe this was the same night that I went back to Archiever’s. I totally love that store.

On Saturday, we had mini classes. I could totally pass up on some of them because I felt like it was more of an opportunity for them to sell their products instead of really teaching us things.  On Saturday night, CKU annouced the winners of all the contests. My nametag that I put together actually won. I was so excited. Melannie’s card she submitted also won, so I was so excited for her.  After they did all the annoucments, we wanted to go visit some other stores that we knew were staying open late. I thought Archiever’s was awesome, we went into Heartfelt Memories, and this place was unspeakable. It kept going and going. So, now if I ever go back to Utah, these are the two mandatory stores I need to stop at. 

On Sunday, we said our good byes and headed home. I took Tracy and Ellen to their other hotel since they were staying an additional day but closer to the airport. Melannie and I were on the same trip home, so we just met up at the airport. However, this time, the flight was packed so we couldn’t exchange seats. Overall, it was an amazing experience that I’m glad I did.

Yes, I’m back from vacation

I know my last post said that Gary and I were leaving on a 10 day vacation not a 2 1/2 month vacation. Sorry I haven’t stayed in touch. I’ve been meaning to right about our vacation for months now, but life gets in the way and updating the blog gets pushed down on the to do list. So, I’m going to attempt to post some pictures a long with some thoughts about our vacation.


Our first stop on our vacation was to Laughlin where we stayed at a resort on the river called Avi. The place was very relaxing. This was the first time where I actually got a chance to see Gary in a swimming pool. It felt great to just wake up and do nothing. 

We rented a jetski to drive down the river up to where the main strip in Laughlin is located. We decided to do this on a Monday, which was perfect because there was no traffic on the river.  The weather was hot, but being by the pool or river, made it tolerable.

Avi Resort 

This is the front of the resort.

 Avi Resort 

This is the back of the resort.

 Beach at Avi 

This is the beach that was right outside the resort.

When we went to the main strip to walk around the casinos, we stopped off at the Riverview Resturant where they have the largest hamburger. I wanted to try this hamburger during our last visit to Laughlin, but they were remodling, so this was my change. The cost wasn’t too bad, only around $9.00 for the hamburger and fries.

Hamburger Plate 

This is the hamburger plate.

Half Hamburger

I could only eat half of it.  It actually really was a good hamburger.

Grand Canyon (I’ll post picutres later. I haven’t downloaded them to flickr yet.)

We decided to visit the Grand Canyon during this trip since it was only a couple of hours away from Laughlin. It has been at least 13 if not 14 years since the last time Gary took me there. The place is just amazing. The crowds wasn’t too bad because we were in the middle of the week. We only budgeted a couple of days here which was perfect. Since we weren’t planning on hiking, it was just the right amount of time to see everything.


On the way to Vegas, we took the famous route 66. It’s amazing how Gary can get us around the country on just a map.  He’s such a good navigator. We got to stop off at a muesum to read about the history of Route 66.  Once we got to Vegas, we stayed at a casino that was totally off the strip called Red Rock. The place was awesome. It was very high class for lower money.  When we walked into the room, everything was top of the line from the towels to the alcohol they had in the minibar.

During our first actual day there, we wanted to spend time at the pool. However, it turns out that something was wrong with the pool, so they kicked everyone out. The next day though, we got down there at 8am and didn’t leave until 5. It was awesome. It was so relaxing. The heat was a little much, but we just went into the water to cool down and everything was okay.


Here is a shot of the pool where we stayed for 8 hours.

The entire trip was so relaxing. It was great to just wake up and go without having to worry about anything. It was a prefect vacation.