Linus – Week 23 (and Las Vegas!)

At week 23, Linus was resting up for before a big adventure.

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He’s getting very interested in activity centers, and toys that move somehow. He really likes turning knobs and banging things.

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Friday morning we all packed up our bags and hopped on a plane. First we flew to Denver and changed planes, then on to Las Vegas. When we arrived, this beautiful cake was waiting! It was so pretty we thought it was fake.

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He was so happy to see ba hai! He recognized her right away, of course.

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He met a lot of people, and got a little overwhelmed. Here he isn’t too sure about Yen’s cousin.

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But of course he quickly settled down and made friends with her.

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Ba tu made an incredible spread for everyone who came over to meet Linus.

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He was the life of the party! I know that Yen really loved getting to see everyone. It’s been so long since he was back. This is another of Yen’s cousin. His wife is expecting a baby boy soon.

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Here’s Linus with his little cousin Rebecca. She’s so adorably shy.

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Linus wasn’t really familiar with the custom of red envelopes, so when he found one in his pocket, he was baffled.

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“Hm. People are always giving me food. Maybe I should eat it!”

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Another little cousin. Linus is surrounded by girls!

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Here’s Linus relaxing the next morning with ba tu.

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This beautiful woman is one of the amazing pastry chefs in the family. Great people to have around!

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We finally decided to get out of the house and check out the Strip. I had never been to Vegas before, so I had no idea what to expect. This is the Bellagio, all decorated for upcoming Lunar New Year.

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Linus does this really fun thing now where he refuses to look at the camera.

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Here are the goats! I’m very confused about whether it’s the year of the goat or the sheep. We saw both in our travels.

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Giant egg made of flowers!

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Was Vegas what I expected? Pretty much. I had forgotten what it’s like to be in places where people can smoke, though. One of the days we went out to breakfast without Linus, and I’m glad he did, because we walked through a very smoky casino to get there. But other than that, lots and lots of things begging you to spend money, and even more things to look at.

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This ceiling is covered in Chihuly flowers. Yen and I went to see an exhibit of his work at the MFA years ago. I don’t seem to have posted the photos! I think that’s because it was back in our early dating days when I was still foolishly only posting photos  I took myself. Luckily we can visit Yen’s blog.

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Here we are outside waiting for the fountain show. Check out those short sleeves on Yen! It was in the upper 60s. So very, very nice for January.

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Linus isn’t so good at telling time, so it didn’t do much good to tell him that the show would be in a few minutes. He was just bored.

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Vegas is full of buffets, so I think Linus just wanted in on the action.

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He was in a much better mood after that!

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Oh! The show is starting!

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Back at home, Linus had a little nap before the next round of company. *yawn* It’s exhausting to be the center of attention!

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Next we headed off to Mandalay Bay to  check out the shark tank.

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It’s a neat design. It’s as if you’re descending deeper and deeper into an Aztec rain forest, until finally you’re in the belly of a sunken ship.

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Linus’s favorite part was the ray tank. There wasn’t much going on in the tank, so he could focus on each one as it slowly drifted by.

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Here we are the next morning at breakfast. Linus stayed home to play with ba hai. I haven’t mentioned yet how much Linus adores François (on the left). He got a huge smile every time he saw him.

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When we came home, we found ba hai and Linus relaxing in the backyard.

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It was a rainy day, so we decided to visit the Venetian, which is all inside.

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Check out the fake blue sky up there in the corner. Linus really enjoyed the gondolas.

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When was the last time you saw a shopping mall with a ceiling like this?

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Here’s St George and that poor dragon.

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Back inside, you can see it’s getting late. See the fake sunset starting over on the right?

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Here’s a waterfall inside the mall.

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See? Sheep, not goats. What gives?

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Now here’s that famous cake maker!

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At last we finally cut the cake. Instantly I was upset that we hadn’t done so early so we could have leftovers for days and days. Inside was fluffy white cake filled with chocolate mousse and praline. Even Yen had a second piece! It was a delicious way to end our visit. The next morning, we packed and headed on for our next destination: Sedona.

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