Monday, March 30, 2015

Our trip to Washington DC

It's Spring Break!!
Now that I have a few extra minutes, I thought I would catch up a little.  
A couple of weeks ago, I had the great opportunity to go with Joseph to Washington DC for one of his yearly conferences there.  He has had to go every year for about 20 years to help make sure Credit Unions were being treated fairly.  In all those years, this is only the second time I was able to go.  There is something about having 8 babies that kind of kept me away.  The first time I went I was 8 months pregnant with Matthew (I think).  I was so uncomfortable!!  I would take the subway then walk to one museum a day.  That was all I could handle.  When Joseph was done, we would use a wheelchair to take me around to the sites.  

Thankfully this time, I was in good shape and able to do more.  Below are a few pictures from that week.  I just love being able to literally walk through all that history.  It's very inspiring!
This is actually our last day at the top of the Newseum.  As you can see the capital was under construction and yes, my teeth look weird because I have braces.  More on that another time.
Flying in, we caught sight of the most sacred building in DC.  Can you see it standing alone with it's white spires?  It's the LDS temple.  It is certainly one of the most beautiful and striking the church has.
I just had to take a picture of one of the restaurants we ate in. I love the lights and would have loved to have eaten there at night to see the glowing effect.  We ate at a lot of cool restaurants, as a matter of fact we had dinners with people everyday!!  The food was delicious but I'll just say that DC is a tough place to try and eat right.  Even the veggies were covered in gooeyness. I gained 3 pounds and I'm sure my cholesterol climbed a few points.
I love the architecture of DC!

This building is for The Daughters of The American Revolution (DAR)
I spent an afternoon in here looking for some of my family but mostly for Joseph's.  It turns out that both of us have relatives who fought.  Did you know that if you become a member and can prove lineage, that your children can apply for scholarships?  Hmm...I think I'll have to do something about that.
I just loved being in this library!!
The DAR ceiling of glass.

The conference offered tours for spouses, so I took a photography tour.  This man taught us a few tricks.  

I love the National Art Museum!!  It's one of my favorite places to go.  I love this painting so much that I got a print of it last time we were there.  What are they looking at?  I imagine it's something dreamy or love inspired, a young man? a couple?  The painting is open for all kinds of interpretations.
I just love their expressions!

I went to the National Archives a couple of times.  The first time was in the basement to search family history files.  The second time was with Joseph to tour the museum.  The best part was getting to see The Declaration of Independence, The Constitution and Bill of Rights.  They don't allow photography around the documents, but I totally love that room!!  Here's a bit of trivia told to us by one of the guards, the beautiful documents written in perfect calligraphy were written by 14-yr-old boys commissioned to do the job.  14!!  I can barely read my kids writing at 14.
 Now my kids are telling me that they can't even read cursive!  Wow, how far we've come!

The beautiful doors of a way cool restaurant across the street from the White House.  It looked like it still had the original chandeliers and woodwork.  My picture inside was too dark to show the wonderful details.  I totally loved the ambiance.

My excitement for the trip was when I was walking past the White House.  All of a sudden policemen from everywhere were telling everyone to stay where they were.  No one could cross the street.  Cars couldn't move and everything seemed to stop.  We're all standing there wondering what was going to happen and soon realized that a motorcade was coming down the street.  Could it be the president?  Possiblly.  Several police cars, motorcycles and limousines went by with several secret service vehicles.  I should have counted but I could guess there were maybe 15-20 vehicles including an ambulance bringing up the rear.  Um, pretty sure it was someone important.

Joseph and I got to tour Ford's Theatre where Lincoln was shot.  It was a lot smaller than I pictured in my mind but was totally moving to experience

The last museum that we toured was the Newseum which is dedicated to news and journalism.  It was totally fascinating to see the effect that media has had on our world.  And as an amature photographer I can better appreciate the affect visual media has on influencing change for the better.  I'm also amazed at the great lengths people go through to share those important images, many losing their lives in the process.
 The exhibit above is for 911.  The mangled structure is the media tower that was atop the World Trade Center which continued to receive signals until the buildings collapsed.  I was brought to tears as I looked at the pictures below it and read about that horrible day.  The wall behind it which is about 2 stories high is lined with front page stories of 911 from around the world.

Another moving exhibit showed pieces of the Berlin Wall.  There is a stark contrast between the East side which is a bare cold grey and the West side which is spray painted with artistic protests for freedom.  It certainly makes me grateful for the wonderful freedoms we have here in our country.  All too often we take those freedoms for granted and should be reminded more often what happens if those freedoms are taken away.

I loved going to Washington DC!!  I would highly recommend that everyone in this country should visit it at least once in their life to appreciate even more the blessing it is to live in America.

Thanks Mom for watching the kids so I could go!!

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