Monday, May 21, 2012

Day 1- Take 2

I successfully lost a whole 4.5 pounds on the 60 day slim-down. Then I went on a vacation... and came back feeling fat... and so, I am starting over with a second chance. I am already better at the exercise and I am getting better at the eating right... So I have high hopes for these next 60 days. Wish me luck!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

A week in Washington (D.C.)

My in-laws gave us a wonderful Christmas gift. Complimentary airfare to anywhere in the country for a little family vaca. As we discussed where we wanted to go, it was suggested that Dad was going to D.C. for a conference and they wouldn't mind if we came along. So, we left Brayden with my parents and hopped on the plane for a week of fun in the nation's capitol! :) (My mom did offer to watch Brayden...)

After our oh-so-exciting experience with Delta last time (if you haven't heard our honeymoon story... you should sometime...) I wasn't too thrilled with the idea of flying with them again. Dad fixed that by getting an upgrade ticket to first class and he gave it to me! (so kind!) I told Bryce I would switch him when the pilot turned off the seatbelt sign... which he didn't... *smile* (I paid him... *wink*) It was quite an experience...

We landed around 3:00 EST so we had some time to see a few sights, get a little east coast clam chowder, and snap a few pictures of the monuments at night! What a pretty sight! (p.s. I LOVE my new camera!)

On the way back from our tour of the warm memorials we took a short cut through a field. Little did we know the other side of the field was completely fenced off by a 7 foot chianlink... What other option did we have? That's right, we all (yes all four of us) climbed over the fence. The only thing between us and our hotel was finding the metro station... which disappeared. Funny enough we walked right by it at least twice... we finally figured it out with 2 minutes until the entrance closed. phew! That is the way you start a vacation! 

When I was asked where I wanted to go, the first thing I wanted to do was the International Spy Museum. It is a blast! They instruct you in the skills of espianoge, give you a "cover" (that you must memorize and remember throughout the exhibit because there's a test at the end), and let you explore exhibits covering everything from disguise to famous people you didn't know were spies. There was even an air duct that you could climb through, you had to be very quiet. You can't help but feel a little paranoid after going though... The rest of the week we would pass someone on the street and Bryce would say "he's a spy..." Naturally, no photos allowed...

We also took a tour of the capitol building with an intern from Senator Hatch's office. It really is a facinating building and it is fun to see where laws are made and passed.
The underside of the rotunda

The original Senate room

Day 3 took us to Gettysburg (my other suggestion). We bought ourselves an audio tour and book (so if anyone plans to go, give me a call! I have it!) and after we went through the visitors center and museum we took it to the field! It was a lot of fun to share one of my favorite places with my new family.

The cemetery where Lincoln gave his Gettysburg Address.

On Sunday we found a ward that meets in one of the oldest chapel buildings in the country. They even had a little frame with original wood from the Smith cabin on the wall! They were such a wonderful friendly ward. We then toured Mount Vernon. This is seriously one of my favorite places in the world. (Monticello is up there too...) It is so beautiful and peaceful and George Washington is truly an American icon, hero, and all-around good man. As my dad put it "Him and Bilbo Baggins... the only two men to willingly give up power..." Well said. :)
Mount Vernon

The rest of the week we spent at the Smithsonian museums and other sites. We saw pretty much everything...
Natural History Museum

Dorothy's Slippers in the American History Museum

Arlington National Cemetery

On Wednesday we got tickets to see 1776 in Ford's Theater! It was a highlight of the week! We had balcony seats that looked straight across to President Lincoln's chair. The play was fantastic too! I am so glad we were able to go!
Sketch of the assassination

Lincoln was sitting there...

The stage!!!

Brayden sent us pictures all week updating us on how he was doing and what he was up to. It was good for me (I missed him a lot!) and, lets face it he's just darn cute!

Dear Mom and Dad, Stay Hydrated!

Dear Mom and Dad, I now control the remote

Dear Mom and Dad, Look at my new play area!

Dear Mom and Dad, I love you!

Dear Mom and Dad, Can't wait to be in my own bed again.

Dear Mom and Dad, They are feeding me. 

We finished it off by attending a session in the gorgeous Washington D.C. Temple. The best way to finish off a great week!

That's it in a very general nut-shell. Thanks again to my in-laws for the amazing time! It was fun to spend some one-on-one time with you.  I didn't think you needed to read every detail! :) Thanks for reading anyway!