Well this year I got to experience something that I have never experienced before. I got to be someone's Christmas Surprise! So my Dear Little Cousin Tierney wanted to see Me for Christmas/New Years and had been giving her Father some trouble about it. We have spent the last 3 New Years together so she didn't want to ruin the tradition. Well her Parents haven't been able to see her as much as they would have liked cause she is now off to college. So they wanted her to stick around, so they asked if I wanted to head out to their neck of the woods. To which I responded, "YES PLEASE!!!"
So the plan was concocted. She was told that my Uncle Ron's friend York was going to come for a visit there the day after Christmas and she was suppose to go get him at the Airport, instead of York I would be standing there with that lovely sign!
She started getting suspicious though and he had to trick her into thinking she was coming to Utah a couple of days after Christmas. It worked though, cause she was SURPRISED!!! Uncle Ron tried to point out a lot a "York's". Tierney said 'That's not York, but that girl over there looks a lot like Cami". At that point she saw my sign, the screaming commenced, and everyone in the near vicinity was throughly confused. It was great fun! That night we went out to dinner and game back home to some serious Game-age!!! Which was a reoccurring theme the whole trip! I LOVED IT!!!
On Tuesday we hung around in the morning. I got to go out and get a Grapefruit right off the tree for Breakfast, which was AMAZING!
We went out to Lunch with one of Tierney's buddies from school and then went to the dollar store, we got some great entertainment there. Not only did we get some supplies for New Year's, we got some grab bags full of some....uh....interesting things, and some Mustaches. See Below....
On Wednesday, Tiern and I went out in the morning and got Pedicures!
It was my first ever, and I am a fan. It does tickle, and I was a little embarrassed cause the lady went to town on my heels and there was skin flying everywhere! But it felt good and my heels are now silky smooth! After another stop off at the Dollar store for some more grab bags we headed out to Tempe to visit Lauren! She had to work a lot, and she is all grown up and living away from home, so I didn't get to see her as much as I would have liked, but I still got to see her quite a bit!
We went out to dinner at this great place and they had a good time teasing me about my Sweet Potato Fries. I thought they were spicy and they thought they were sweet and that I was CRAZY! Afterwards we went back to Lauren's place and played a very INTENSE game of Farkle, in which Lauren and I almost gave Tierney a run for her money, but ended up losing horribly. Then we headed off to a movie!
On Thursday, we took a scenic drive out and checked out 'Out of Africa'. It is new and it was a first time for them too. Let me just say, IT WAS STELLAR!!!
You get to go on this Safari out with all these animals from Africa and you get to feed and touch the giraffe's!
Tierney went for a kiss at the urging of our guide, and she was all for it!
It was SO funny to watch! I LOVE this picture too, cause they both looked grossed out by the kiss. Something, I totally get!
Then there were the Zebra's that tried to get a ride. It was cool that we sat upfront, they were right there!
Then there is the little baby.
The guide showing us the ostrich hug, which was very precious!
Here is the cute little armadillo that I got to pet....
..and the cu.....the anaconda I got to hold!
Tierney held him too, but she was NOT a fan!
We wandered our way on up to where they have some programs and looked at the animals along the way. There were a lot and they were all over the place. It was so cool.
They had this show called 'Tiger Splash', where they do things to instigate the Tiger's natural hunting instincts so you get an idea of how they do it. It was pretty cool to see.
This is the beautiful one that did the demonstration.
Then they showed us a real big Python. We volunteered Tierney to go in there and she was not very happy with us!
After the crowd left and things died down, Aunt Patty and I went in and hung out with the snake. He was Harmless....
They also had a thing about Hyena's and they are quite funny. I learned that the Hyena laughs when he is angry. SO, if you are ever confronted by a Hyena in the wild and he starts laughing, then you should just get out a there. If it starts mooing though, your ok, he is just saying 'hi'. Just a useful tip that you will probably need to know....cause you never know.
The beautiful little bear. I think they may have taken a little liberty with this one, since I am fairly sure they don't have Grizzley's in Africa.
Then some Kitty's. This was actually one of the highlights. There were quite a few Lion cages scattered throughout the park and at sundown the most incredible thing happened, and we were literally standing right in the middle of it all. One started roaring, and then another, and they another, til we were completely surrounded by roaring Lion's!!! I got a little Video but it doesn't do it justice you just had to be there, cause you could feel the vibrations through you. It was just INCREDIBLE!
So I am a big fan. If you are near Flagstaff, that is the place to visit!
On the way home we went to the Outlet Mall in Anthem and it has a ridiculously huge tree. It is REAL, and Tall! So we got some Pics, also I nabbed a real cute sweater (that I am currently wearing) from the Banana. We also had to check out the bathrooms cause they advertise on their huge sign that they are sparkling. Welp, I didn't see any sparkles, but I did see some toilet paper on the floors and something on the seat. I think they need to rethink the advertising strategy. It was a cool place regardless.
Here is one from right below that monster, so impressed!
That night after our Dinner at Johny Rockets, we went home and watched Hatari. I have always loved that movie cause I have fond memories of watching it with my Grandpa, also who doesn't like the Duke, but this time was pretty cool cause it was right after our own little Safari experience. There wasn't a better time to watch it.
We took a moment during the flick to take a picture of me and Sammy! He was my little buddy the whole trip. So cute! Tierney said that everybody likes their other dog Mocha better, but not me, he was too much of a licker. Tierney also said that he doesn't like too many people, and then was nice enough to figure out that he tends to like older people better, like her Grandpa, so kind.
I have no pictures from Friday, but we went and met Lauren at this real fancy mall, and did some shopping, and some lunch eating. It was very fun. We also found this GREAT Russian Market that had everything! I was literally like a kid in a candy store, giggling and everything. They had so many things I remembered. I went a little overboard and bought a ton of goodies. Then later we went with Aunt Patty out to see a flick.
On Saturday we headed into Old Town Scottsdale
As you can see. It was pretty darn cool. They had all these little shops all over. I really like it. I was able to get some souveniry stuff, and Uncle Ron was able to get some uncomfortable boots, that he really wanted!
Tiern and I had some fun in all the stores.
and some fun with the camera!
We went to the Sugar Bowl, which is a pretty big deal in this area. And I had a HUGE Ice Cream!
There was a cardboard cutout of Mike Rowe in the Dirt Shirt Store. I love him, to bad it wasn't really him.
Weird moment in the car. Oh I forgot Uncle Ron also took us on Roller coaster road and we got to see the praying monk.
THEN, we headed back home. We built a fire and read for a while. It was the calm before the storm. Since it was New Year's Eve and all. We did get yelled at by a neighbor during the calm. Apparently it was a no burn day and there wasn't suppose to be fires, so we told her we would let it burn out, but Uncle Ron kept sneaking logs on it. It was a holiday! A perfect day for a rebel fire!
Tierney and I made some Jumbala and then a couple of her friends came over to party. We had party Crackers that had surprises in them, that we played with. Also the glow sticks, and mustaches. So we had a lot of good stuff for the photos!!!
We also had some Apple Cider, and goodies. Uncle Ron entertained us with a tear jerking musical number. He loves his Apologize song!
Tierney and I are prepping for New Year. We had our Confetti Guns at the ready!!!!
Then New Year's hit and we made a really big confetti/silly string mess and screamed and danced around and it was a great party!!! So excited for the NEW YEAR!!!
On Sunday all of us, including Lauren went out to Breakfast and came back and played some games.
I told you it was a recurring theme. I have to admit that it was one of my favorite parts. I just love Games. Luckily my family does too, cause we played a whole lot of them.
I even managed to pull out a Nerts win. I didn't think that would happen those ladies are just too good. Then it was time to leave, and as you all know parting is such sweet sorrow..... I really didn't want to leave, I had a very had time with it, cause I had such an AMAZING TIME!!!! They spoiled me to the core, and I am going to have to work very hard to ever be able to repay the favor!!! THANK YOU UNCLE RON, AUNT PATTY, LAUREN, and TIERNEY FOR THE AMAZING VACATION!!!! I LOVED IT SO MUCH!!!!