Viva Las Vegas | 5 Year of Calling Vegas Home

I cannot believe that we've been living in Vegas for 5 years already.  Time sure does fly when you're having fun.  I gotta say, I really like living here.  My husband misses trees, but I don't really.  I mean, it's always nice to see trees when we go on vacation, but I really do love the desert landscape.  Is living in Las Vegas perfect.  Of course not, but what place is?  Well, maybe Southern California is really close to perfection...But, alas, I don't live there. I live in Las Vegas and I'm making it work for me and my family. 

We made the decision to move from Central Florida to Las Vegas 5 years ago because my family had moved here and we were expecting baby #2.  Family is very important to us and I wanted my kiddos to grow up with family around them.  Being in Florida without our family just didn't feel right.  Plus, Jason and I were really ready for a change.  Florida had been good to us for 12 years, but we felt stuck and it was definitely time to move on.  So, we packed up our things and said goodbye to the sunshine state (which is such a bad nickname being that it's so humid & rainy there!)

Making the move cross country wasn't as hard as I thought I'd be.  I'm sure this was because my family was here and it helped make the transition a lot easier.  I didn't feel lonely or lost in a new environment.  I immediately took to the desert lifestyle and I find myself defending Vegas to people how ask how we could like living here or if it's a good place to raise a family.  The truth is, we don't live on the strip and outside of the strip, Vegas is just one big suburb.  We have lots of parks, nice communities, shopping centers, and plenty of kid-friendly activities.  It's like living in most cities, you don't take your kids to the "bad side of town" or with you for a night out, right? Here are a few things I like about living in Vegas and how Vegas has helped me and my family live a fun life:

*I worked really hard to establish my business here.  I grew as a business owner and my photography skills improved, as well.  I'm a wedding photographer, feel free to check out my work HERE (shameless plug, I know!) I don't think I would have such a successful business if we would have stayed in FL.  I didn't have the motivation or the drive to move forward like I felt when we moved here. 

*We get to travel more.  Florida is mostly surrounded by water and it takes about 3 hours traveling north to get out of the state from Central Florida and even then you weren't anywhere super fun.  Yes, Florida has beautiful beaches, amusement parks, and other fun places to visit, but for someone like me who loves to travel and explore new places it just wasn't enough.  Flying is expensive for a family of 4, so road trips are more our style. Living in Las Vegas has really given us the opportunity to visit some awesome cities, national parks, and landmarks in many different states.  

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*Getting outside!  Yes, summers in Vegas are HOT!! But, they only last 3 months and the rest of the year the weather is pretty close to perfection.  Plus, it's not humid and it rarely rains! We love going on hikes around Red Rock Canyon (which is just 15 mins from our house), going to parks, and just exploring the great desert outdoors right in our own backyards!

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*Getting healthy!  Ok, so this one didn't happen immediately.  It took me a long time to realize that there was a lot more to it than dieting or being fat versus being skinny.  In 2012, I finally realized that I had to make permanent lifestyle changes. I was tired of being overweight and feeling sluggish, so I made the right changes and now I live a much healthier and active life and my family does too! 

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Like I said, l really enjoy living here and we've made some good friends and awesome memories here. I could look at this town and find a million things wrong with it and yeah, sometimes I do.  Sometimes I wish we lived in a city with more of a local vibe, with more cultural centers, museums, and nice farmers markets.  Sure Id o.  But, I choose to embrace where I am and make the best of it.  I choose to look for the good and be positive.  It's easier and makes me happy.  I look forward to lots more family road trips and days hiking along Red Rock Canyon with the kiddos.  Thanks, Vegas!

Vegas peeps, what do you like about living here? If you aren't from Vegas, what do you love about your hometown? I'd love to hear from you! xo