Friday, July 29, 2011

NYC/DC trip- Part 2

On the 8th we got back from Walla Walla and after two days I went to NYC. My cousin was getting married and I really wanted to go and see her and her new husband and my aunt and uncle and my brother and his family who were driving from Kentucky. I hadn't even met my nephew. It was so great to hang out with them. The kids were so cute and so social. It seemed like they already knew me. My mom came with me and of course I loved every minute with her. Too bad the other family members couldn't come but it would've been too expensive for all of us to fly. Actually I needed a break from the kids so maybe I take that back.

The open house took place Friday night in a hotel in Manhattan on the 18th floor. You could see my favorite building on one side Chrysler and on the other side Empire State. They had nice appetizers and music going but at 11pm we had to leave. After that some people went dancing but we decided we wanted to go somewhere we could talk and the loud music wouldn't have helped.
Our good friends who hosted us again and my uncle in the middle. There wasn't a happier person in the room. It filled my heart wish so much happiness to see him. So proud of his daughter. 
So we went to Junior's right in Times Square. Big dissapointment on the food front but their cheesecake is to die for so that made up for it. That is what they are known for though.

The next day we all got together again in Central Park for more family time. My brother, SIL and neice we all went boating on the lake. That was so fun. There were so many people out that we kept bumping into other boats and others into us. It was hilarious! The weather was super hot and super humid and it was nice to be out on a little lake.
Central Park is so huge, our feet were hurting by the end of that trip but it was beautiful. I love my uncle and it was fun to spend time with him again. He was living in Paris when I went there in 2000 and was the best guide.
Merayla with Statue of Liberty in the background
Our next destination was Washington DC. We took the Bolt, a very comfortable bus and four hours later we were there. We checked in to our hotel and then slept for a few hours. We kept staying up past 2 am chatting every night and it all caught up to us.
Later in the evening we took a night tour of the city on the double decker. After the tour was done we went over to see the Capitol. It was so warm and lovely out and we were pretty awake having napped. It was so beautiful. 

The following pictures were taken on our second day there. We walked close to 13 hours that day. The mall is quite big and getting from place to place and museum to museum takes a while. We bought Tourmobile tickets, this bus that stops at all major things in DC. The thing was that we were in the museums so long that when we wanted to ride the day was almost over and they were closing at 4:30pm. Good thing the ticket to this shuttle was good for two days. We made use of it better the second day when we mostly did the memorials which didn't require as much time as the museums did. Arlington tour was also included so that was nice. The buses came every 15-20 minutes and they had a live tour guide so in the end I guess I would recommend this tour only because if you have a limited time there to walk from monument to monument it's just way too far.

We wrote our congressman for tickets to the White House. We didn't get them but we did get a special tour with a guide of the Capitol. What a building! It's impressive both inside and out. I loved being there. It just felt so special and it was just beautiful. We also were able to go see the Senate and House of Representatives but they were both on break so we didn't see them live in action. We waited a little but I was done sitting around. The security guy told us: "Welcome to the zoo!"

Inside the Capitol.  I couldn't get enough of this place. Bottom right-Brigham Young

The Air and Space Museum was very interesting and I am sure my kids would've love it too. I guess it's the most popular of the Smithsonians. 

Library of Congress-OK they are ALL beautiful. I wish we could've stayed longer here
Archives building-bottom left, Supreme Court-bottom right (we didn't make it to these ones). Top middle building-Native American Museum-the newest on the Mall, also didn't make it inside.

After all the museums and the capitol we did Monday during the day we stopped at the best BBQ place. It had an amazing brisket and it probably tasted so good since we hadn't eaten since breakfast. From there we went to Washington Memorial, World War II memorial and finally ended with Lincoln Memorial, on the most impressive ones in my opinion. It was nice because it finally cooled off some even though it was midnight when we were doing all that. 
 What fun to go to all these places with mom uninhibited from little ones. They would've been a mess. Maybe I liked not being mom way too much that week. 
WWII Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, White House, Washington Monument by night

On Tuesday, July 19th we got up early to go get tickets to see how the money is made. It was a fun tour even though to get to it took a while since they kept sending us from building to building. Buy tickets here, wait elsewhere, etc. Annoying! The tour was cool. We got the tickets for 11:30am so in the meantime we hurried over to Washington Memorial to see if they had tickets available. We heard it's hard to get them but we were lucky and were there early enough and were able to get tickets. I am just in awe of this building. It's the tallest  building in DC and needs to be so forever. That is the law! After both tours we headed back into the Museum of Natural History and the American Heritage one. I loved the Minerals, Neanderthals and the collection of dresses worn by the presidents' wives at Inaugural balls and such. There is so much stuff to see in all museum, weeks wouldn't be enough to see it all. So with all the walking we did I still didn't see some important stuff like the Jefferson Memorial, Archives building and the Supreme Court. Hopefully there is a next time to go finish my tour. I'd love to take the kids there when they are tenish or so. 
I felt very patriotic being there. Amazed at all the founding fathers did. Amazed at how it all started. There was just as much turmoil and fighting between the parties as we have now or worse. 

Museum of Natural History, Hope Diamons and other cool minerals and geodes, etc. I loved this part of the museum and all the amazing jewelry pieces.

These next pictures are from Tuesday. We went to Arlington Cemetery after our tours in the am and then after we got back we went to more museums, the Korean War memorial and the Vietnam War memorial. It humbles me to see all those names inscripted on the walls. These men and women enrolled in the army, navy, airforce, etc. have my utmost gratitude. Their courage and love for their country is something beautiful to me. I love them for it and for their sacrifice.

Franklin Memorial

Korean War Memorial

Arlington Cemetery
Tomb of the Unknown-Arlington
Change of guard at Arlington
Arlington Cemetery
Vietnam War Memorial

Our last day, Wednesday July 20th we went to the Pentagon Memorial which was impressive and ended the day with Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum to see all presidents and other celebrities. I was unsure if it would be worth the money but it as actually really fun.
This was the Pentagon Memorial. Our hotel was close to it and we decided to go see this too. It was amazing. 
The had one of these little wings for each person who died there with the person's name inscripted on them. The ones that are facing the building are for those who died in the plane that crashed into the Pentagon and the ones facing away from the building are from the ones who died in the building. The youngest was a three year old and is at the front of the memorial and then each row after that has the year of birth of the deceased. Most of them were older and you could see that by the many wings in back.

Rosa Parks
Ronald Reagan

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Another dream vacation- Part 1- Naming Ceremony and Camping

Wow! Where should I begin? I have so much to write about and so many pictures that I took that it is just plain overwhelming. Plus I am bad and I start getting into the picture edits and post while my kids are still awake and I know how annoying that is to them.
Anyway, I have been gone from July 1st through the 26th with 3 days at home here and there.
First trip was Canada on the Indian Reservation. This was my first reunion ever just to give you an idea how often these happen. We were glad to be there together as a family for a happy even and not a funeral which was the event that seemed to get us together.

We got Indian names given to the adults by their Grandma Allen and to our children by their grandma Charlotte.

It was such a neat experience to participate in this. The weekend was very well planned, and I didn't have any stress like I had anticipated. I am sure those who prepared for the reunion and who live them can say otherwise but I am very thankful for their work. We had a big dinner, karaoke, dance, and family pictures. We also stayed up really late playing games and enjoying our time together.

Here are our names:
Shane-Red Hawk with acute senses-Weel Wilt pia
Maddy-Blue Bell-(flower) Quik a ips
Lavinia-Social Butterfly-Pill pal ah which chi ah

To say Lavinia was excited about being called a butterfly is an understatement. Everytime she sees one she says" "Here I am, mommy! I am a butterfly." and then she says her name in the native tongue.

We all came up under this tent thingy and were presented a frame with a picture of what our name is and then were told why the name was chosen for us and of course some nice things about us. I thought everyone got a really cool name and they were well thought out.

I will take a picture of our frames soon.  Again I am not too pleased with the pictures. It was so hot and always so bright and I just am not that good a photographer to take good pics in any lighting.

Inside that place covered by the blankets they were doing a  sweat lodge. 
Cool Zeke with D's glasses
Beatiful Ashley (SIL) and Alexis (niece) in their regalias. 

Aren't those costumes neat? 
My handsome, intelligent FOX. :)
Can't help myself. I got him to smile pretty. 
Getting his name, stick and frame from his grandma. 
My little butterfly. 

Shane's great grandma made all of those beautiful dresses. I love how the sisters have all different colored flowers. 

Everyone left on July 4th and my sister in law Ashley stayed in Canada with me and the kids for a few more days. We took advantage of the hot sun and went to the beach lots and had a great time.

Then we went to Walla Walla where Shane's brother lives and went camping for two nights. We love camping out there. Again, lots of fun except for my two very annoying kids at that time. They just were so whinny at that point. My kids don't do very well on trips especially if they are longer than just a few days.
Anyway, I am sure it will get easier and better as they are older.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...