It all began with a girls’ weekend trip to Vegas.  My college roommates and sorority sisters came from all over the country for our annual get together.  Obviously, the older we get, the more responsibilities we take on…spouses, kids, jobs, houses…but the great thing with this group of 10 incredible women is that we have committed to our friendships and make the effort at least once a year to spend time with each other…get wild and crazy…then go back home to our more conservative, sophisticated lives.

Usually when we come together it’s because we are celebrating an exciting event, like a baby being born, or someone getting married or moving into a new house, but this time was bittersweet.  It was the “Bon Voyage” party for the mama hen of our group, we call her “The Planner,” as she keeps us all in-touch, organized and seriously carries the weight of ensuring our friendship remains solid through the years.  Her husband is in the Air Force and they are going across the ocean for a few years, so we figured now is as good a time as any to have an amazing blow-out in her honor!  And, gracefully, they all agreed to meet in Vegas so I could join them.  By being able to leave my little ones at home, I could go back and forth to the Strip to meet up with them.

RSH (Rock Star Hubby) had agreed to help me out so I could enjoy my time with the ladies.  They literally come from all over, New York, Maryland, Phoenix, California, and they planned the date, meaning bought plane tickets and everything, around the time he would be available so I could play.  I had the kids’ all organized according to his work schedule, and I planned to spend one night at the hotel so I could get in some good girly fun.

Rewind about 8 weeks.  RSH 40th birthday was coming up.  Generally, we like to travel to some place fun, rather than spend the money on a big party.  Both of our parents had been offering to throw him one, and he was adamant that was not what he wanted.  I was asking him on a regular basis where he would like to go…Telluride? Hawaii? Mexico? To which I was told we were not going anywhere, we were not spending any money, he did not want to celebrate his 40th birthday except for dinner with his best friend, and alone with our kids.  So, I planned a dinner with his BFF and his wife (their birthdays are a month apart), and called it a day.

As we quickly began approaching the Girls’ Weekend, RSH started getting emails from a buddy of his who owns some fishing boats down in Cabo.  He wanted to take RSH deep sea fishing, one of his most favorite things to do in the whole wide world, for his 40th birthday.  And, surprise! Guess what?  It just so happened to be the same weekend as my girls’ weekend that we had been planning for months.  Of course, he started with the whole, I know I can’t go…right?  Finally, after days of moaping around and talking about how amazing the trip would be, I told him we was welcome to go, but just as in fishing, there was a catch.  He had to take me with him.  There was no way I was going to let him celebrate his 40th birthday without me, while he was in Mexico, relaxing, fishing and drinking, and I was running around like a mad woman for 10 days with four kids!  Immediately, he said, “OK! Sounds good!”, and went off to call his buddy and plan their trip leaving me with my mind racing trying to figure out how I was going to pull this off on my own.

TGFN! Thank God For Nannies!  Our nanny is a blessing in disguise.  She was recommended to us by another friend of mine who also has twins, and an older son.  She is great with the kids, she keeps the house clean, laundry done, babies on schedule, and me organized…my secret is out of the bag!  She comes twice a week, and when I need her for dinners and events with RSH…she truly is amazing, and when she cannot make it for one reason or another, my house and life is in complete disarray.  Not to mention, she is young and wanting to save money for a house, so she is eager to work.  Perfect!  I call her up and ask can she watch the kids until I get home on Friday night? And can she spend the night on Saturday and stay until I get home on Sunday?  Then can she come over after her other full time job on Tuesday and stay with the babies until my mom and dad got there to spend the night so I could leave for Mexico?  Yes?!?! Oh, God Bless Her!  I started to breathe a little easier.

Now, off to pack for the two older kids, who will be staying with my in-laws, the twins, who will be staying with my parents, then me…I needed an over night bag for my sleep over with the girls, then I had to get packed for five days in Mexico.  TGFS! Thank God For Sisters!  She provided me with the majority of my wardrobe for all of this, so all I had to do was add jammies, toiletries, etc, and I was ready to go!  Oh…what else…right.  Have to write out an entire schedule for each child, no kidding.  My actual schedule was three pages long with times and days, where the kids were sleeping, who was picking them up where and when, phone numbers, addresses, when to feed the dog, turtles and fish…this is just a Cliff’s Notes version.

  • RSS (Rock Star Son)…has school, wears uniform, takes hot lunch to make it easy for everyone, has piano on Tuesdays (Father-in-Law will pick up and drop off), has Religion Education Class after school (which my mom teaches, so she will pick him up for that), has basketball practice on Thursday (Dad will take him and bring him back to in-laws), has Cub Scouts on Friday (Father-in-law will bring him to that).  Need to remember Cub Scout book, back pack, basketball, uniform for all three, piano books, lunch box, water bottle, toothbrush…done!
  • RSD (Rock Star Daughter)…school, wears uniform, no hot lunch, needs to bring hers everyday, has dance on Tuesdays (girlfriend from class will take her, Father-in-law to pick up…need to bring dance clothes and car seat to school), has sports class after school on Thursdays.  Need to remember her meds (she has asthma), uniforms, dance clothes, car seat, lunch box, backpack, toothbrush…done!
  • RST (Rock Star Twins)…OMG, where do I start…literally record every step of routine…eating, burping, change diaper, let them cry, pick them up, put them down, nap, play time, bath time, night light, mobile, humidifier.  Need to remember jammies, clothes, socks, bottles, formula, water, bibs, seats, activity gym, blankets, stroller, car seats, and bottle proppers (no one could make it a day without those!)…done? God I hope so.

This alone took two weeks to prepare and get everything ready.  I was exhausted after doing just this!  Needless to day…I was ready for my girls to get here so I could unwind and have fun, and Mexico was the light at the end of the tunnel.  I was secretly hoping the five days in Mexico was worth the two weeks of planning to get down there.

I was able to have a good time knowing that my kids were at home with the nanny while I was down on the Strip.  It’s such a comforting feeling when you know they are safe and being treated well.  That you don’t have to leave early to go and collect all of them and their belongings, then drive them back home and get everyone out of the car and into the house.  I have done it before.  Not fun.  This is why I need my nanny!  She really does make my life easier.

RSH pulled through, like he said he would.  See, he left for Mexico the day my girls came in for the weekend.  Though we all paid for everything we did, he did help us secure a table at the nightclub and reservations at the restaurant.  He had to promise me and swear on the lives of his four children that this weekend would go off without a hitch.  And it did.  He was on-duty the whole time he was down there, except for during the day while he was out at sea, and I didn’t really need him then anyway.  The girls arrived at VIP check-in and were already in awe of Aria.  Before they got here, they weren’t even sure of where they were staying because Mama Hen, aka, “The Planner”, threw down her credit card and took care of the rooms.  The City Center itself, even though it’s been around for a year now, is still a little confusing to the general public.  There are several buildings, hotels, crazy entrances…people comment they feel like they are driving into an airport or hospital while dodging cabs and limos.  When the economy crashed, it hit Vegas pretty hard, which especially meant bad news for those who had investments and jobs in construction.  Many projects were literally just walked away from, and left to sit for a few years until someone or some bank could come in, buy it and put it back together again.  City Center faced some of these struggles, and therefore, when it did opened, not all the buildings opened.  Aria is the only hotel/casino on the property and was the first, along with Vdara (a non-gaming, hotel/condo tower) and the Mandarin Oriental.  Then there’s the whole marketing issue, and it’s not clear to most people what the difference is between Aria and City Center.  So when the girls arrived at their destination, they were giddy with how cool the structure really is.  The VIP check-in has a very hospitable lounge with couches, and complimentary coffee, water, cocktails and wine along with cheese and crackers and fruit to keep you satisfied while you wait either for your room, or for your next big thing.  Once all the girls arrived, they left the lounge and headed up to their suite, which, of course, was a corner sweet with the most amazing view.

The H.C. (minus two!) at Deuce in Vegas!

We had an amazing weekend full of delicious dinners…Holsteins at the Cosmopolitan, Union at Aria…crazy cocktails and lots of vodka…dancing, stories, paparazzi picture taking…we even saw Wyclef Jean play at Haze…the girls went home with the feeling of being treated like high-rollers and RSH wasn’t even in the country!

@Rockstarmomlv with @Redlotusmama and our friend Robyn at Union
One of the crazy cocktails at Union

I have to admit, Sunday was a little rough for me.  Dealing with a weekend hangover, while trying to take care of the babies and get the older kids ready for school the next day was no easy feat.  My dad showed up the next morning with coffee to pick up RSS and RSD and cart them off to school, while I started throwing things around for my next adventure…Mexico!  I wasn’t so angry with RSH anymore, and was actually excited to see him.  I was relieved everything went so well and that we had great stories for the next Girls’ Weekend…hopefully without “The Planner” being in the States, there will still be one next year.

The cab came and picked me up at 4:30am on Tuesday morning.  It was so dark and cold, I fought the notion to go back inside and change out of my flip flops and linen shirt.  I grabbed my sweater instead and
wrapped it around me like a blanket.  The cab driver was awful chatty, I mean after all, it was his job to be up that early in the morning, but I hadn’t had my coffee yet, and had just woke up after getting three hours of sleep and feeding babies.  Besides, I saw a little camera, and a sign advertising “Taxi Cab Confessions” and I wasn’t about to take his bait…I knew he looked familiar.

At the kiosk check-in, I was asked if I wanted to upgrade my whole flight to First Class.  Maybe it was because I hadn’t had my coffee yet, or maybe because I felt I deserved the much needed relaxation the seats and service would provide for me to begin my trip, but I selected, “yes,”  swiped my credit card, and walked to the gate a little giddy and anxious to get there.