Thursday, August 27, 2009

My Summer Vacation, Part 1: Photos

As promised, here are some pictures from the first two days of our trip to DC. Hope you enjoy.

Crime and Punishment Museum:

Bonnie and Clyde's car

The Set of America's Most Wanted

Navy Memorial:

These two pictures are the center of the Navy Memorial. All around this are small memorials to different branches of the Navy. As you can see in the pictures the surface is two toned and makes a map of the world. Well, anyone who's smart enough to look sees that. I, however, thought that the ground was wet and just starting to dry in spots. In my defense, it honestly looked wet and I think it's harder to see when you're standing right on top of it. Anyway, everyone had a good laugh at my expense. I do what I can to keep everyone happy......

National Archives:

Some of these pictures are hard to see because you're not allowed to use a flash and everything is under glass but you get the basic idea. They're old and faded. The one that got to me the most was the rough draft of the Constitution. You can actually see where they edited it and wrote notes in the margin. Great stuff!

These two portraits flank the documents in the rotunda:

The Declaration of Independence:

So faded you can barely see it even with the naked eye. Most of the signatures are not even recognizable, even so, it is still moving to be in it's presence.

Declaration of Independence

Rough draft of the Constitution

First page of the Constitution

Bill of Rights

Nationals Park:

Beautiful ball park. But where's the roof?

So there you have it. Some pictures of vacation part 1.
I will be blogging this weekend on the next two days we spent in DC. One day was spent outside in the record heat and humidity, but we still made the most of it even though we were wilting. The next day was spent more indoors, which was nice and included my favorite place in DC.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

My Summer Vacation, Footnote

I will be posting more of my summer vacation in a few days. I am impatiently waiting for my youngest to download all of her pics onto my computer. She has the majority of the pictures and I really don't want to post until I have them. My last post was missing pictures of the ballpark and inside the Archives. Check back for those. Until then......stay cool!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

My Summer Vacation, Part 1

Yes, I officially suck at blogging. Oh well…….

I’m back after a hiatus and just in time to tell you all about my summer vacation. The most exciting thing about it was it was the first vacation we have taken in about 8 years. Of course, my daughter had to move completely across country for me to get a vacation, but that’s a subject for another blog. As you may have noticed I titled this part 1. You all know how wordy I can be and there is a lot to tell so I figured instead of trying to post in one huge long blog, I would stretch it out and make you wait for the future installments. So, without further ado…..let’s get started.

My daughter, Sarah, lives in Arlington, VA and works in Washington, D.C. The last time we visited D.C. Sarah was 8 months old. Kind of ironic that she would grow up to live there. It gave us the perfect excuse to take a vacation. When beginning to plan the vacation we decided that we would all go together for what would be probably the last “family” vacation we would ever take. Having no more kids in school I was excited at the prospect that we could pick any time of year to take this glorious trip. I’m thinking D.C. in the spring. No families on summer vacations, cherry blossoms in full bloom, nice weather. I was stoked. Unfortunately, that’s not what happened. See, I live in a family where baseball is the most important thing in life. So my husband expressed his need to go on this vacation when the Diamondbacks were there to play the Nationals. Ok, I was willing to go along with this little request, so we pull out the D-Backs schedule and what do we find? They will not be in D.C. in the spring, nor even the early summer, no, they will be in D.C. the first weekend of August. Oh yay, I think, (there really needs to be a special font for sarcasm) D.C. in the most humid time of year. Can’t wait. Far be it from me to spoil anyone’s fun so we make the plans for August. Oh, and we couldn’t just go to one game, he wanted to go to all three. I told him he could go to all three but I would give him one and then find something else to do when he was at the game. The weather in D.C. in the days before we left was pretty mild and I was thinking maybe this wouldn’t be so bad. Wrong. Guess we brought the heat with us and when we got there they started to have record heat and what they call “oppressive humidity”. They are right, it’s oppressive. So we spent most of our trip wet, and not because it was raining. I can’t promise to never complain about the heat again, but I will say I am glad I live where there is practically no humidity. I wasn’t likin’ that so much. Anyway, a few things about D.C…..

The Clems in DC

I love how things are so close together. You can metro and walk to anywhere you want to go. It’s fabulous and one of the things that I wish we could do here. They have great restaurants. All the restaurants there have their menu’s posted outside so you can walk up and see what they have and figure out if you want to eat there. It’s great. Obviously, there is so much history there and I love all the old quaint buildings and I couldn’t help but think as we were walking in some of the older parts of town that these are some of the same streets that were walked on by the early patriots when they built the city. I’m corny like that.

Our first full day there we visited Sarah’s workplace and met her co-workers. Always nice to put faces to the names I hear her talk about everyday. We then set out to see Ford’s Theater but unfortunately their schedule did not match ours so we set out walking to our next destination, the Crime and Punishment Museum. I highly recommend this place. It’s privately owned so you have to pay to get in but it was well worth it. It takes you through the history of crime and punishment from the middle ages to the present day. There are special sections on forensics, serial killers, assassinations and many more. They also house the set of America’s Most Wanted which was one of the reasons I wanted to go there. When we were done there we hopped on the Metro and rode over to the National Archives. When you get off the Metro, you are right at the Navy Memorial which is right across the street from the Archives. That was a nice surprise and something we hadn’t planned on seeing. The Archives were awesome even if the wait was long. I got very emotional looking at the Declaration and the Constitution. Yes, there were a few tears. I just get emotional when I think about what those documents mean and what the brave men and women of that time had to go through to give us the life we live today. National Archives

After the Archives we headed back to the hotel where Dan, Steve and Beth got ready to go to the game. While the others were at the game Sarah and I stayed at the hotel and had a great little visit. We ate Chipotle, watched Dateline and talked. It was so reminiscent of our days together when she lived at home and I was really glad to have that time with her.

The next day we spent the morning visiting Sarah’s new house. Well, it’s not new, actually it’s quite old, but it’s new to her. She had just moved in the weekend before we got there. It’s a cute little house and I was glad I got to see where she lives. Later we met my cousin, Cheryl, at the hotel and set out for Chinatown. I have not seen Cheryl in so many years it’s embarrassing, but that’s what happens when you live on opposite sides of the country. We ate at a great restaurant in Chinatown called Clyde’s. Great food and a wonderful atmosphere. After dinner we set out for the ballpark to watch our D-Backs take on the Nationals. The weather was actually not too bad once the sun went down and we had a nice breeze. Cheryl and I missed most of the game because we were catching up. Actually didn’t matter that much as the D-Backs lost for the second day in a row. Oh well. A fun time was had by all and I think we need to not go so long next time before we see each other again.

So there you have the first two days of our vacation. Fun filled and busy. In the next installment I will tell you about monuments, memorials, ruby slippers and the coolest place (in my opinion) in D.C.