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Posts Tagged ‘holidays’

Check out Amazon where “Black Friday” is now “Cyber Monday”

Monday, November 30th, 2009

Have you checked out Amazon.com today and the phenomenal deals available on what is now called Cyber Monday? I’ve got the Amazon “Lightning Deals” page minimized on my desktop while I write a couple of articles I have due for the next issue of Casino Player magazine.  I simply hit on the tab and check out each hour’s deals (Right now I’m waiting to see the price on an upcoming deal: the Dell Inspiron Mini 10 10.1-Inch Netbook.)  This is way more fun than trolling the malls looking for deals plus I’m getting some work done at the same time I’m doing my holiday shopping.

mikasa parchment dinnerware

I can't wait to use this pretty red and gold Mikasa Parchment dinnerware on Christmas Eve.

In addition to the hourly deals, there is a whole section of all-day Cyber Monday sales also going on at Amazon.  I picked up this Mikasa Parchment Red 40-Piece Dinnerware Set, Service for 8 for the holidays for just $130.  That’s 78% off the regular list price of $580!

I’m also getting this Wusthof knife — Wusthof Classic Ikon Santoku. The Santoku is made in such a way that the blade cuts through food with less drag and allows for thinner slicing of almost anything. (Caution: This includes your fingertips!) The lowest price I’ve seen on this particular knife is $89 so this is a fab deal, especially for cooks like me who first became a fan of the brand back in culinary school.

(And, yes, I know this post has nothing to do with Las Vegas or gaming but I just felt that my readers would love getting a good deal(s) as much as I do!)

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Hotel Deals that Make Me Want to Live in Las Vegas this December

Tuesday, November 11th, 2008
Wynn Las Vegas offers a winter getaway for you and your friends.

Wynn Las Vegas offers a winter getaway for you and your friends.

P.B. and I have always been big fans of heading to Las Vegas before the Christmas holidays.  We get a little shopping done, take in the holiday decorations — especially the winter display at The Bellagio’s Conservatory and Botanical Gardens — and just kick back and enjoy some down-time during what can be a pretty hectic time of year.  We’ve never found December to be particularly busy in Las Vegas and with the economy in such a downturn we look for it to be even quieter this year so here’s your chance to enjoy the city at a much more relaxed pace and at some great prices. (more…)

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Travel Arizona – “Cliffs” Part 2 – Ridin’ the Verde Canyon Railroad

Thursday, October 9th, 2008

Mountains surround the Verde Canyon Railroad depot in Clarkdale, Arizona.

The Verde Canyon Railroad Trip

I promise you that I am going to wax poetically while describing this trip – there is just no other way to do it justice.  If you live in Arizona and haven’t taken this trip – stop right now, scroll down to the link and make reservations – it is that good.

Here’s a look at our trip.  We chose the Starlight Tour which leaves at 5:30 PM on select Fridays and Saturdays from May through September.  If you are booking your trip for other months, be aware that the train runs year ‘round with a variety of special seasonal trips and varying times so don’t worry – there will be a great trip available for you, too. 

We arrived at the depot in Clarkdale, a small town located just a short drive from Cottonwood, and spent some time in their interesting gift shop before boarding the train.  (There is also a snack bar at the depot and you can eat there or take something onboard for later.)  Our tickets were for First Class but you can also choose Coach Class with Adult, Child and Senior tickets available.  Couples and others looking for a little quiet time should definitely consider the First Class option.

Once we boarded and settled into our comfy sofa-style seating, we were introduced to the amenities of the First Class car including a cash bar and the complimentary snacks which, for our trip, included hot wings, mini-sandwiches, a cheese and cracker selection plus my favorite, a fresh mozzarella and tomato salad.  After what the train staff calls their traditional “toast to a good ride” – your choice of champagne or sparkling apple juice – we were off. 

The setting sun gives a molten glow to the mountaintops.

Red cliffs and molten gold mountaintops on the Verde Canyon route.

The train travels along the upper Verde River, through red rock canyons and past soaring cliffs colored orange and gold, sage and slate with bits of lavendar and rose thrown in for good measure.  Along the way, your bartenders and hosts will provide a running travelogue of sites set against a backdrop of original music.  You can stay in the enclosed car or for the best experience, enjoy your ride outside on the open-air viewing car.  During your journey, you’ll see ancient cliff-dwellings, bald eagle nests, and some of the most beautiful scenery anywhere.   If you’re lucky, you may spot an eagle gliding through the canyon or an elk stopping by the river for a cool drink.   There’s so much more but I want you to be surprised when you see it first-hand.

My favorite part of our journey was the nighttime ride back to depot when the only lights came from the seemingly millions of stars above and from the headlamps of the train reflecting off the canyon walls.  This is a ride I would love to take again – either a daytime trip in the Spring when the wildflowers are in bloom or perhaps one of their wine-tasting journeys. 

For online reservations visit their website here – Verde Canyon Railroad

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