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How @sipwithme_lv came to be

Hey everyone (or the four of you that read this, haha)! It's been a while since I wrote a blog on here. I haven't been particularly motivated to, but I figured a question I get asked pretty regularly is how I started this whole thing, so that's where I'm going!

When I moved to Vegas a little over five years ago, I had checked out Instagram for all the cool places to hit out here. There was a TON of great foodie pages, but I couldn't really find anything about the bars, breweries, and other fun spots to drink. I thought, "well maybe I should make my own page!" Then Covid happened and literally everything got shut down for months. When things opened back up, it was even more so of a passion to help promote and support local businesses, which is how @sipwithme_lv came to be! Since I was already going to a bunch of different bars and lounges, I figured I might as well snap a few shots of the drinks while I was there. My first post was 12/6/2020, and I've been posting nearly every day since. It's crazy to look back at the old posts and photos and see how BAD they are... yikes! Not that my super old i-Phone did me any justice, but my photography skills have improved greatly over the years!

Cigars started trickling in on my page about a month later. My husband had smoked cigars for years, not regularly, but it was something he'd do when we were still tourists visiting Vegas. Once we moved here, we'd go to cigar lounges more often, and soon enough I wanted my own cigar. I started with flavored cigars (ACID Blondie was a favorite, Tatiana's and Drew Estate Java were also in my rotation). After a few months, I got tired of the same sweet, artificial flavors, and craved some REAL flavor! I just recently started a separate page @smokewithme_lv which is just focused on cigar content since it's become such a big part of my life. I'm currently working towards becoming a Cigar Sommelier.

Home bartending became an addition to my page in June 2021, with my cocktail Reels starting a year later in 2022. Bartending has always been a passion of mine, and I went to bartending school back in California many years ago. After I became certified, my husband and I ran our own mobile bartending business as a side hustle for a while. We did weddings, business functions, parties, etc., and we had a blast! We eventually got out of it because we didn't have the time, storage, or transportation to build the business, but the passion for making drinks was still in me, so this has been a nice way to experiment and mix up some unique drinks!

Las Vegas always remains the focus, LV is in the handle after all. I sprinkle in some of my shots of the city here and there, and I continue to support local small businesses, and drag my butt to the Strip when necessary, HA! I do love what I've created for myself, and I never would have thought that my idea to start a silly IG page would have come this far. I've met a ton of great people, made lots of friends, went to some incredible events, and have worked with so many amazing companies. It's really just the start, and I can't wait to see where it goes from here. Cheers!

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Great blog post Ashley! Loved learning more about your journey! And, if you ever need content for your website, so many of your posts seem to provoke people to ask questions and learn more. So most all of your Instagram posts can be made into blog posts by expanding more on your ideas? IDK, just a thought from an avid fan!

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