December 6, 2018

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

I’m Stephanie Messick, a wedding and lifestyle photographer based in Warrenton, VA. Whether I’m by the mountains in Virginia or the ocean on the Florida Gulf Coast, my soul feels right at home, surrounded by rural living and the raw beauty of nature. I genuinely love what I do, and feel so passionate to share the enthusiasm and joy of these celebrations with you!

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Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike

Well, I’m kind of embarrassed to say I never posted about my trip out to Las Vegas back in April!!! And it was one of my favorite adventures!!! I feel a little behind on blogging because not only is this post SO overdue, and I haven’t even finished sharing my favorite 2017 photos!!! HAHA! Please bear with me. 😉 I’ll have to do a catch-up week soon! But this blog post is a good start!

Jess and I met back in the high school days, but it wasn’t until her February wedding back in 2013 (almost SIX years ago??!) when we really had the opportunity to get to know each other. Gosh, I could talk to this friend for HOURS about God, family, food, work, relationships, adventures, the Air Force, and so much more! And, you better believe we did! The entire trip was filled with many laughs, tears, and everything in between. There’s something so genuine and REAL that comes from every conversation, no matter if it’s a short or lengthy talk; I quickly realized how similar we are! The funny thing is that I also realized at that time how similar Derek and Alex are as well. 🙂 It’s refreshing to have a friend I can relate with and open conversations of vulnerability! Jess is a one-of-a-kind girl, and I cannot tell you enough how glad I am that my business reconnected us!!! I adore Jess and her hubby together! They have a special place in my heart. <3 And don’t even get me started talking about their precious kids! LOVE THEM!!!! Any chance I had to watch the kids while Jess got stuff done around the house, I made sure to take it! 🙂 I’m so happy I was able to have quality time with the entire family throughout my visit!

This trip to Nevada was a great balance of activity and relaxation, and I already want to go back!!! Even though the quality of these photos below isn’t the best, I’m so happy to have these memories recorded to look back for the years to come!! It was one of my favorite adventures in 2017, and I’m SO grateful for the Dawson family for having me!!! <3 Here are some of my favorite highlights from my trip!!!

Las Vegas Adventures

Right after Jess picked me up from the airport, she took me to Container Park to enjoy a couple of drinks and apple-brie grilled cheese sandwich! Oh my gosh… Amazing.

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

Our first adventure — Valley of Fire State Park!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

<3 I LOVE THIS FAMILY!!!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

My buddy!!!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

Amazing!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

Every time we saw a lizard, the kids got SO excited and said, “TAKE A PHOTO!!!!” Haha!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

<3 So grateful for this pretty friend!!!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

Declan, “I can stick my tongue out too!”

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

This scenery was unreal!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

This was funny because one lonesome hiker told us we HAD to make our way through a narrow trail to see an AMAZING green tree! We struggled our way through the tight space with the kid backpacks on, and when we arrived, I don’t think we were very impressed by this AMAZING green tree… HAHA! Although, if the bush was burning, I would say differently.

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

LOVE THEM!!!!!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

WE DID IT!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

Can you spot me? This little guy was quite the boulderer! I was so impressed!!! He barely needed my help!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

After a successful day hiking, we treated ourselves to one of Derek and Jess’s favorite splurges, carne asada!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

After I took family portraits of this sweet family on a SUPER windy, cold morning, we came back to Red Rock Canyon to hike Calico II! It is one of my all-time favorite bouldering experiences!!!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike

I love this left photo — You know… Just warming up! HAHA!

Also, I am not kidding when I said it was WINDY!!!! I wish you could tell in the photo!!! It was RIDICULOUS and made us feel a little uneasy at times because the gusts could knock us down! I’m not sure if it was the dry air or the altitude, but I ended up with a random nose bleed at this point of our hike! Crazy.

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike

AWE! They are adorable!!!!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike

Derek’s watch read the altitude — 5,010 feet up!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike

We did it!!!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike

GRRRRR!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike

We made it down safe and sound, most importantly!!!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures | Red Rock Canyon, Calico II Hike

Then we enjoyed a little old school Las Vegas with a few drinks and kid slides! You know … because gambling was too adult and we know how to have fun. 😉 HAHA! And also know how to get kicked off the slides, apparently.

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

Even though it looked like we hiked a LOT, we also enjoyed some downtime back at the house. 🙂 I enjoyed helping out with the kids as much as possible. And a kid who enjoys yogurt THIS much needs to be featured on an ad. HAHAHAHA! I LOVE IT!!!

Las Vegas, Nevada Adventures

Thank you, Dawson family, for welcoming me into your lovely house and taking me on fun adventures around Las Vegas!!!! I love you all and cannot wait to see you again in the near future!!! XOXO!

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