Friday, June 15, 2012

Our Nation's Capital and then some

The month of May sure was a busy month for us. We spent almost two weeks in the Washington DC area which was followed by a trip to St. George and a weekend in Moab and Abe celebrated the big 3-0!!! 
Now that we're home I thought it was time to update the blog.

Here's all about our vacation in the Washington, DC area. And yep it's a long post. 

So, Abe really wanted to go back east with his fam and since it has almost been 7 years since my internship in DC I thought why not. It's about time I get back to one of my favorite cities! So we jetted off. 

We landed in Richmond, Virginia and drove south and spent about a week in the Williamsburg area.
       We spent some time enjoying Colonial Williamsburg and did some re-learning of U.S. History!

 While in the area we also spent a day at Jamestown. The first successful English settlement on the mainland of North America.

 And we also went to Yorktown that day and we learned a bit about artillery.

 What great participants! Father Johnson said "fire that cannon."
 Abe just playing the part of a rebel patriot in a tent at Yorktown.
... Yorktown battlefield....
 Later that day we headed to Virginia beach. It was a bit chilly!
After we ate at the ole Waffle House. We really need one of those joints here in Utah.
 The next day Abe's Dad had to meet a client in York, PA so John, Abe, Steph and I headed to Amish Country. We ate at a great restaurant in Intercourse, PA and had some Amish food and talked to our waitress (who was Amish) all about the city and her life. It sure was interesting!
That evening we went to Gettysburg. It was a bit rainy and the haze made the battlefield look real solemn. That was my third time to the battlefield and it was interesting to see it like that and just as the sun was going down.
 And it was off to Washington, DC the following day. Our first stop was Senator Mike Lee's office. A few people from his staff gave us a tour of the building.

Had to get a pic with Grandpa
 We also took a Supreme Court tour and wandered around the mall and over to the White House.

Next up... we then headed back to the timeshare and decided to head to Busch Gardens for a bit of an adventure. It sure was fun. That was my first time there and they have same crazy rides!!! It sure got me pumped for our trip to Moab to skydive.

 Here we are leaving the Marriott time share we stayed at in Williamsburg. 

 And before we totally left Virginia we stopped off at Monticello. Jefferson's home. I sure love that house. It has to be one of the greatest homes in all the U.S. Then it was off to spend more time in Washington DC...
 At the Portrait Gallery we came across these two pics.. one of the Prophet Joseph Smith and the other my Great Great Great Grandpa, Brigham Young.

We ate in China town and walked around the monuments. And the next day was Sunday and we went to the ward in Chevy Chase which I went to as an intern. But this time we went to the family ward (when I was there I went to the single's ward) which happens to be Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's ward and as we walked in and got a program we saw that he was speaking... and it was mother's day. It sure was a great sacrament meeting. I even had to introduce myself to him! We may not think the same way politically (like at all) but I would say that he is a good man. I sure could tell the Church meant a lot to him and I really enjoyed listening to his testimony.

After Church we ran out of gas... yep completely empty... Johnny had to walk it to the closest 7-11 to get us gas... and then it was off the Air and Space Museum at the Dulles Aiport.
An air bus flew over our head. Such a huge plane!

 Abe was seriously in heaven. Talking with Rocco (his new buddy) about planes, watching the planes and telling me over and over again that we need to get ourselves on an Air France flight some day soon.
...Abe and the space shuttle Discovery..
 Discovery is now in retirement. When we went to the museum it's housed in now it had only been on display for three weeks.
 After the planes we headed to Nando Peri Peri Chicken Restaurant - a Portuguese restaurant serving flamed grilled Peri Peri chicken. John loves the stuff so we had to try theirs out. And yep, got the Johnson approval. Sure was tasty.
 Then it was off to explore some more monuments. There is seriously so much to see and do in DC!
Had to take a pic with the Abe's! (and can I just say that I am so excited for the movie based on the book Team of Rivals that comes out this's all about Lincoln.. his last 4 months! And Steven Spielberg is the director. Oh and Daniel Day Lewis is playing Lincoln. I sooo can't wait.)

Okay so the next day we spent in the city as well. It was our last full day so we had to take it all in.

Toured the Library of Congress, Bureau of Engraving and Printing, the Holocaust Museum and then split up and the boys went to a National's game and Steph and I went to Ford's Theatre to see the musical 1776. Which was terrific I might add! 

The next day we went to Mt. Vernon. Toured George Washington's Home and then we got in the car and headed to Western Pennsylvania.

Mt. Vernon sure is beautiful... a presidential home right on the water. Amazing. A Washington has his own boat dock!

Later that day we got to Western Pennsylvania and went to Fallingwater. Frank Lloyd Wright was the architect and it sure is a masterpiece. A home on a waterfall. He designed the home for his clients the Kaufman's. They owned a Pittsburgh department store.
 The kitchen in Fallingwater
 The living room. Wright sure liked the modern look.  We toured Taliesin West in Arizona in January and it too is very modern.
 The waterfall that the house sits on.

And who would't love this... a stairwell right to the water!
 Seeing and touring Fallingwater was definitely on our bucketlist and it sure exceeded our expectations. That's why we headed to Western PA. There really was no other reason but while we were out there we stopped off at the spot where United 93 went down on 9/11. 
 This listing shows all the people who lost their lives taking down the plane.
 The rock represents where the plane went down.
 United 93 Memorial. Now I have been to all three 9/11 memorials. (Pentagon, Somerset, PA and NYC)
Our last meal on our trip was in Pittsburgh at Crystal's. Guy Fieri from the Food Network went there so we thought it would be safe to grab a bite and it sure was! Got the grape leaves and Philly Cheese. We then boarded the plane for home and got in just after midnight!    We had such a great time and sure lived it up till that last minute. Trips really are the best and we so needed one!!!

Later I'll have to post a bit about Abe's 30th Birthday in St. George and our skydiving trip.