Thursday, May 19, 2011

5.5 hours

You know the drill.

I'm busy tonight.

That is all.


Wednesday, May 04, 2011

DC - Part Two

So, on day 2, we didn't even go into the city.

And we certainly didn't go anywhere that had anything to do with spies.

And we didn't have to disguise ourselves.

And we didn't break into teams to do a spy mission.

But IF we HAD, Sydney, Emily, and I would have beaten Meredith, Benjamin, and Eli. By a good ten minutes.

Just saying.

While I'm denying things, I should mention that I did NOT hang around at the Hoover waiting for Special Agent Seeley Booth to come by.

(**editor's note: I have done everything I know to do to turn this picture around, and it just won't load right. Tilt your head to the left and behold the awesomeness.)

After we didn't do anything spy-related at all, we stopped by the White House.

These goobers are so much fun:

After a short metro ride, we found ourselves at the Library of Congress. I wouldn't have chosen to see this on my own, but I was awfully glad we did. I was really struck by the beauty of the building.

And there was a Gershwin exhibit in the basement! This crowd LOVES some Gershwin!

We strolled past the Capitol:

And then Meredith went all Trip-Nazi on us:

So we saluted.

This was the point where my gimpy foot went from stiff and sore to kind of numb...which...believe it or not, made all the walking a little easier.

I got really good at bringing up the rear and counting heads. 1-2-3-4-5-6. Yep...all here!

Off to steal - I mean - see the Declaration of Independence:

And we finished up the night at the Lincoln Memorial. (Which is nowhere near a Metro Stop. If someone tells you it is, they are lying, and you will walk 2 miles each way to see it. ON A GIMPY FOOT. This concludes the Public Service Announcement.)

The last time I was in DC, I was eight. Our family went, and we brought Me-ma and Pa-pa with us (who, had never really been anywhere in their lives). Everything seemed so huge and wonderful when I was little. Don't get me wrong, there are still a lot of grand things in our nation's capital, but nothing was as grand as I had remembered. Except the Lincoln Memorial.

The few days that followed the trip are a bit of a blur. What should have been a 5 hour drive home on Saturday took 10 hours. When we finally got close to home, a tornado was IN OUR TOWN and we had to drive away from the storm before coming back home. Fortunately, everything at my house was OK.

Meredith's family, who lives in the woods, couldn't even get up their driveway for the fallen trees, and had no power. So, they all came home with me and stayed for a few days. It was fun...mainly because I had 4 people who wanted to play Playstation with me.

So that was our trip. What an adventure!

Meredith's talking about doing Europe next. I'm all over that...

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Tuesday, May 03, 2011

D to the C

My good buddy Meredith invited me to go to Washington DC with her, her mama, and her 4 kids.

(The jury is still out on whether she was crazy to invite me, or whether I was crazy to accept.)

We got off the metro at the USDA...I was REALLY tempted to go in and tell them exactly what I think of their Specialty Crops Program:

Then we strolled down to the Bureau of Engraving. It turns out that I'm $1,537,800 tall. Who knew?

After taking some nice tourist shots with Benjamin and Emily

we headed to the Smithsonian.

First stop, American History. I got to see Dorothy's ruby slippers, an AMAZING exhibit on America's wars, and was completely star-struck when I saw Kermit the Frog.

I made a special trip to check out Julia Child's kitchen...

...where I found my new favorite quote:

That's my new mantra.

On the way out, I saw C-3PO and totally geeked out on them.

This is the costume from Return of the Jedi, in case you were wondering. I wonder if it still has sand from Tatooine in the joints...

After lunch, we were off to the Natural History museum. How about that elephant (and Emi's pretty cute, too)!?!

We went through the skeleton exhibit. Here, at the buffalo skeleton, Benjamin, Eli, and Emily show off their best buffalo faces:

Since I'm mildly obsessed with Bones, we went through a forensic anthropology exhibit based on skeletons found at Jamestown. This boy died from an infection after he was shot with an arrow. See the arrowhead (in his left femur)? It was found with the skeleton. Fascinating.

Somehow, I ended up taking the boys through the gem exhibit. They wanted to see the Hope Diamond. For 20 minutes, all I heard about was the Hope Diamond.

Then we saw the Hope Diamond.

Eli steps up, peeks in, shrugs his shoulders, and says "It's kinda small."

Talk about anti-climactic.

We HAD to go to the gift shop (Benjamin's goal was to leave no gift shop unbrowsed). I found a kitty that looked a bit like Oozey!

After a snack, we were back on the mall and on our way to the Air and Space Museum. Sydney, Eli, Benjamin, and Emily took part in a paper airplane-building contest

while Francine modeled the very latest in aviator fashion:

I was eager to see the World War II memorial, so we walked down the mall...with a break for some Funny Girl, of course:

Funny girls, indeed.

The WWII memorial was amazing. Beautiful. Sad.

I sure wish my Grandaddy could have seen it.

It was late, and my gimpy foot (which - all things considered - did VERY well) was starting to throb. So we headed back to the hotel.

Stay tuned for the adventure I can't talk about...

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