I’ll unashamedly admit that when I heard the term “babymoon” for the first time, I thought it was really dumb. I think we try to celebrate EVERYTHING in our culture sometimes (“First trip to the movies as an engaged couple!” is an actual Instagram post I saw a couple of weeks ago) and sometimes, I think it’s silly. But you know what? There’s enough darkness in the media these days (explosions, elections) that we need some goodness, and celebrations are a necessary thing. Also, upon hearing that my days of being able to travel easily are soon coming to an end, I considered jumping on the bandwagon.
So when I heard I’d be in Vegas for work a few months back, I asked C if he’d want to meet me there when my work completed. Now, something to know about us: while we both like to indulge from time to time, we indulge with like, organic farmer’s market ice cream. C doesn’t drink or gamble, we both don’t smoke (even though we used to a hundred years ago…gross), and I am clearly not drinking now either. So I was (so happily) surprised when he paused at my question, and then said yes! And so we had a little babymoon before our baby girl shows up in July.
(“Wait, you’re pregnant. How did you avoid the smoke while walking around? Did you know babies can be exposed to secondhand smoke? Don’t you think that’s a little IRRESPONSIBLE of you?!” I hear you asking. Hey, no offense taken…I would have thought the same thing. I really did my research before committing to making the trip and I took six of these activated carbon masks with me. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THEM IF YOU’RE SENSITIVE TO CIGARETTE SMOKE. Any time I entered a casino, I put one of these bad boys on and while yes, I got a ton of weird looks, I went home without wheezing. Highly highly recommend!)
So, even before I got on the plane, the first thing that happened is that my crazy pregnancy brain messed up not just my flight to Las Vegas, but also my flight BACK to LA. (How do you mess up both flights? Ugh. Btw, I booked C’s flights just fine.) The shortest way to tell this story: I booked my flight there 24 hours before I was supposed to be there, and booked my flight back 24 hours after I was supposed to leave. I only figured out that I’d effed up when I got a notice that my flight was delayed…24 hours before I was supposed to fly. WTF. Pregnancy brain has been a really hard phenomenon for me, because 1. I identify with my brain, as in…I AM my brain, and I have always had an impeccable memory, and 2. I like feeling smart, not dumb. But Southwest was SERIOUSLY incredible and just moved my flights for me at NO COST AT ALL. The woman I spoke with actually laughed at my pregnancy brain tale, and wasted no time in moving my flights when they were supposed to be. Hello, I am now a Southwest devoted customer forever.
My regional manager was super sweet and nice enough to book my boss + me a room in a totally non-smoking hotel, Vdara. Last year some girlfriends and I stayed at Paris for a bachelorette party and while it was SUPER FUN + beautiful, we honestly came back to LA actually wheezing from all the smoke inhalation. (So crazy to think I used to smoke. What a dummy.)
Okay, but back to Vdara…so I now love this hotel and won’t stay anywhere else again, ever. It’s right next to Aria and The Cosmopolitan, you can walk across the street to Paris and Planet Hollywood, and you can take a quick walk to Bellagio via a ramp that connects. There’s a cafe downstairs that has grass-fed burgers and organic everything (seriously? in Vegas?), and I knew it was a good sign when I saw our favorite ice cream brand in the convenience section of the store! (It’s Strauss, by the way.) The spa is incredible. Oh, and there’s a Starbucks. The end.
I traveled to Vegas with my store manager and after a slight snafu in our first room (as she is breastfeeding, she’d been promised a freezer that mistakenly wasn’t there), we immediately, no questions asked, got upgraded to the corner suite with a huge view of the strip and a bathroom that is bigger than my last apartment. And you guys…the bathtub. It’s the size of a small swimming pool and it fills up in 2 seconds. Once I tried it, I then took a bath every single night for the rest of the time we were there. (Lukewarm temperature, of course. Those pregnancy books really like to warn you against cooking your baby.)
Each day we walked to Veer Towers to meet our peers from the LA region, and spent the day learning. I’ve gotten to travel SO much for work in the last 12 months (San Diego, Phoenix, Vancouver, and now Vegas) and I am so.so.so grateful. Travel just lights me up! I also had never gotten to travel with Arin before even though we’re really close friends, so this trip was really special just to have some time together. ❤
It was an amazing three days! I wish we could’ve had more time together!
The work part was actually over way too fast. It’s rare that we get to be together as a region, and I seriously love these women! The days are always jam packed and the offsite experiences always go by in a blur. The next thing I knew, I was hugging Arin and everyone goodbye and excitedly walking back to Vdara to meet my husband for some much needed downtime. 🙂
So what do you do in Vegas if you don’t gamble, drink, smoke or go clubbing?
As soon as I reserved our room and flights, C got to work booking reservations for all the places we’d eat. OMG guys, it is worth going to Vegas these days just to eat, seriously! Now that I’m well into my second trimester, I don’t get nauseous anymore and I only get heartburn sometimes. (Unfortunately, it’s random, and citrus, which has been my main pregnancy craving, seems to spur it on.) Thankfully, I got to indulge (most of the time) right alongside C. It was the best.
The first night, we went to Gordon Ramsay’s burger place, Burgr, @ Planet Hollywood. Highly recommend if you need a burger fix! Their shakes have pudding in them, which was a little rich for me, but they tasted amazing. Unfortunately I had walked 9 miles that day and my pregnant body was utterly exhausted by the time we got in, so I didn’t take any pictures.
Day 2: we took a $30 cab ride to Lotus of Siam, a Thai place in a strip mall we’d heard a ton about. We LOVE Thai Food, and this was another restaurant we’d seen on Top Chef, so we were excited. Final verdict: if you’re in Vegas and close to the Wynn, go. (In other words, don’t spend $30 on a cab to get there.) If you live in LA, you’ve probably already had Thai food that is about as good as Lotus, so you can skip it.
For the bachelorette party I mentioned earlier, my best friend had booked us for dinner at a place in The Cosmopolitan called Rose. Rabbit. Lie. It was so.freaking.good that I knew I had to take C there this time around. Insider’s tip: make your reservation for around 6:30-6:45pm. Just trust me and don’t google it — the surprise around 7pm is worth it. This place is spendy but worth every dollar. Oh, and order the empanadas. And the brussels sprouts. And their cocktails are SO good, I asked them to serve me one sans alcohol this time and I had to force myself to drink it slowly: it’s slurp-able. Yum.
We took a trip to Fashion Show Mall to check out the lululemon there!
1. Wow, this store is SO gorgeous.
2. I love having lemon friends in other cities! Their staff is SO nice…if you’re in Vegas and are perusing this mall, go see them!
This is the spa at Vdara! On our second to last day, C went to go work out and my achy body declared, “Okay Jen, it’s time to bite the bullet and get a prenatal massage.” I was so sore from all the sitting and walking, and my back has been bothering me since I was a few weeks pregnant. I honestly drove C crazy debating for a FULL hour if it was worth the expense or not. In the end, he implored me to go and I’m so glad I did. I dipped my feet in the jacuzzi (can’t get all the way in to water that hot while pregnant), lay on their heated stone chaise lounge, read Oprah magazine while sipping decaf tea, took the world’s longest shower, and had the best 80-minute massage of my life. I don’t think I’ll ever spend that kind of money on a massage again…ever…but for a one-time treat while pregnant, it was worth it.
For our final dinner, we went to Gordon Ramsay Steak @ Paris. (If you haven’t figured it out, my husband is a total carnivore.) This was sadly the one night that heartburn had hit me really hard, so I didn’t end up having any meat, but C assured me it was amazing. I feasted instead on their Green Goddess Market Salad, roasted carrots, brussels sprouts (I’ve been really into those while pregnant for some reason) and broccoli. Highly recommend. The service was also incredible! Our favorite service in Vegas by far.
We got home yesterday and while six days in Vegas is a long time (especially for a pregnant person!), if you’re not hungover, smoke-poisoned or exhausted from clubbing all night, the experience can be really relaxing! It IS good to be home now and I’ve got a full week off from work to nest/clean/start to get things ready for baby. I hope you guys have a great week too!
Thanks for reading about our babymoon! Did you/would you take a babymoon while pregnant, or do you think it’s silly?
It sounds like you’re having so much fun! Wow, I can’t help but envy you just a bit. I’m still a college student and I’m really hoping to have a life similar to yours one day! I’m wishing C, the baby, and you the best!
Thank you Kelly!
And just so you know, I spent so much of my college years (and my 20s, and early 30s) heartbroken, in MAJOR debt and flat-out broke! So don’t envy me…I suffered through it all too; just work hard and you will inevitably get there! ❤️
So happy for you Jen! It is so sweet reading about you and your little family. I wish you and C (and baby) nothing but happiness and love. ❤ Maybe there is still hope for this thirtyish year old.