Las Vegas and Portland, Oregon

Long time, no talk!

In late June/early July, I visited Lima and Cusco Peru with my mom (as well as Machu Picchu)! I still need to upload a lot of those photos, so I’m skipping to my trip to Oregon with my brother, Al!

This was my graduation present for him.  Al and I are only one year apart in age, so we get along very well 🙂 Although we are very similar, we are different in a lot of ways!  One major difference: I have been out of Michigan every month since March, including two different continents!  Al hasn’t been on a plane since 2011, which made this trip even more special for him (AND for me)!

Thursday, July 26


Al and I had a four-hour layover in Vegas!!! We tried to make the most of it 🙂 Our first stop was obviously the strip because if you didn’t visit the strip, did you even go to Vegas?

We are both OBSESSED with Gordon Ramsay!  We grew up watching, and still watch, all of his shows.  Even though it’s not one of his “upscale” restaurants, his burger joint wasn’t too shabby…


Seeing the strip, eating a turkey/duck burger perfected by your idol, and watching people lose tons of money at the slot machines?  Priceless (but not for those who lost money)!!!

Once we FINALLY boarded the plane (which seemed like forever), my luck instantly changed.  I was in Spirit’s “Lucky Seat!”  I won 5,000 free miles!  I couldn’t believe it, and still can’t.  Sometimes it pays to be in the middle seat…maybe the Vegas luck rubbed off on me 🙂


PS: I already claimed the code, so it can’t be copied from this pic.

The night kept getting better once we touched down in Portland.  We were both exhausted and wanted to keep things low-key, which led us to a pizza joint near our hotel.  Al had a slice as I devoured a whole gluten-free pizza to myself!

We were able to bring our food into a little cider brewery!  It felt like we were in a garage, but in a good way (if that makes sense)? This was actually heaven on earth for me, since I am celiac and LOVE dry cider more than anything…


Above all, we had great conversations over dinner and drinks.  The trip meant so much to me and I hope it meant the same to Al as well.  We haven’t really hung out like this since college, so being close again meant the world to me.

On a lighter note, I am blessed that Oregon was a gluten-free mecca!  I was never able to go inside this place, but it reminded me of…me (I am a gluten-free gem after all)!


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