Sunday, June 21, 2009

Our Last Day In The City Of Brotherly Love.

Well we made it back to quiet Springfield Virginia. We caught the evening bus back to china town and took the metro home. Overall it was a smoother ride then the firs round. We sat next to nice Jewish man that guessed we were Mormon and asked us all about the temple and our lives. Weird how we were going back "home." We walked around the city one last time and made it down to Penn Landing its kinda a boardwalk area minus the shops right on the water. There is a huge bridge you can take over to New Jersey so I saw another state! We finally ate the classic cheesestake where Boy scouts of America were welcome:) and hit up Benjamin Franklins home. There is actually no home structure there anymore but a cool little underground museum and one tiny decapitated brick wall you can look at.

We stumbled upon a monument to those who died in the potato famine in Ireland and also one of the oldest churches in America. It was a beautiful building with the classic wooden pews and a big steeple. We were bad and did not find an LDS building to attend church but rather went to this one and felt it was okay:) I love being with Larry and getting to see so much. He is very protective of us when we are in places like this making sure I don't get lost and always have a diet coke to drink. Such a good husband. We also found the oldest longest place that people have continually lived circa 1703 it was charming tiny row houses and a fun find.

We ate at our little sugar waffle shop as well and said goodbye to it. We vow to one day go back and eat there again. We also got to take some pictures in front of the large Masonic temple that is downtown right next to the most ornate and large city hall. It was a pretty relaxing day just looking at all the buildings and enjoying our time together.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Historical Philadelphia In Pictures:

It was a jam packed see everything we can kind of day. We went to Independence Hall where The Declaration of Independence was signed, saw the building of the first Continental congress, saw the Liberty Bell, and went to the new Constitution museum. There is so much to see just in a few block radius. Benjamin Franklin grave is also something we saw from a distance because you had to pay 2 bucks to get in {we are cheap} The one place we did not see was the US Mint, well we saw the building but did not do a tour. The cool thing is that all those things are all in one area its set up really nice for tourists.

It was a drizzly day but it was pretty amazing to stand in places where so many people have come to see and where our countries bones were established. Its hard to really grasp it all but as we continue to see more places it hits me how much these men were gambling on our nation working and how much faith and emotion they had in it all working out. The constitution museum was very interactive seeing how states were made, the supreme court works and figures of all the men who singed the constitution.

The Liberty Bell is next to Independence Hall and its amazing to me how many foreign tourists were there seeing the Bell. Just walking around the different streets there is lots of beautiful brick buildings that have some historical impact. We also were able to sit in one of the buildings were George Washington resigned as president of the United States which was a pivotal and vital part of our democratic system. We also stumbled upon a Revolutionary War Monument that had a tomb of the unknown solider with a lit candle similar but much simpler then the one in Arlington Cemetery. The best part about seeing all this is that we stumble upon little things like that, places that not everyone knows about or sees.

Later we went to dinner in a authentic Italian Philly restaurant. It literally felt like it was straight up in someones front room of their house. We shared a table and it was bring your own alcohol {which is fine because we don't drink}. Apparently there is too many restaurants and not enough liquor licenses so everyone brown bags it. It was quite the experience. Later we walked the busy streets and got some amazing yogurt. It dried up a bit and turned into a beautiful summer evening. It has been fun to see another city and to be able to share this time with just Larry and I. We have been really lucky to be able to do this and I want to try to remember everything I can about these trips.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Hello From Philly!

Whew we made it to was a journey. It actually is only 4 hours northish of D.C. but we have no car {remember} so we took a bus from D.C. china town to Philadelphia china town. It was crazy this company sells more tickets then seats so Larry literally had to drag me through a mob of people to get us on the bus and in a seat. I thought we might die I don't know if I ever would do that again. But what can I say the tickets were cheap and now we know why.

Onward to the city of brotherly love. Let me tell you somethings I have already learned about Philadelphia. The metro or subway system here is ghetto compared to D.C and dirty. The city is dirty but the buildings are beautiful and old and there is some much history here. Oh also Philly loves Benjamin Franklin {and so they should} he is everywhere in every form around this place!

Once we got here and set our stuff in the hotel we were off. Oh let me tell you how nice it is to be laying in an actual bed! It was been over a month and I am dying of comfortableness. Once we got settled into our upgraded suit we were off.

Today we walked around the city and got acclimated with the area we are staying in. We are right in downtown and in walking distance from University of Pennsylvania and all the historical things and the water. We went and walked around PENN seeing all the beautiful buildings hitting up the law school, bookstore, and checking out the campus in general. All the buildings are brick and anyone would be lucking to attend this school.

We also walked awhile to find the "Rocky Stairs." Personally I have never seen these movies so I have no clue but it was fun for Larry to run up them like the movie. There was also some crazy monument that had all these animals on it that Larry insisted on climbing up and riding. We had lots of city views and had a great night. Tomorrow we are hitting up Independence Hall and whatnot.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

A Little Update From The East Coast

So I thought I'd update the world on our lives back east. We have lived here in Springfield Virginia for about a month now. Its interesting, different, scary, amazing and everything else. If you don't now we are living in a basement of an LDS members home and Larry is working for a government contracting firm in Arlington Virginia. His job is only about 10 minutes away without traffic, but if you have ever been to the D.C. metropolitan area you know about amount the insane traffic at times. We are a metro ride into D.C and it takes me about 10 minutes to get there during express times. I have found a job working for an LDS family in crystal city which is a little sector within Arlington. I watch 3 little boys during the day and sometimes I am able to borrow the car so it's nice to actually drive occasionally. It has worked out okay. The mom is a tad bit intense and the kids have a lot of allergies so it is hard to keep them happy because they can't really eat much and are always hungry.

We have met some fun people in our ward and have made really good friends with a guy at Larry's work, another intern name Jake. His wife Brianna is pregnant and they do not live to far from us. Its worked out pretty well...arriving here homeless and now we have jobs. Every night we go into D.C. and see something new or just walk around the monument, it really never gets old. This is pretty amazing and has really strengthened me because I have never been anywhere! I have learned I can do hard things...but it has been a big adjustment to live so far away from my parents.

We are leaving for Philadelphia tomorrow to stay the weekend and explore and then my brothers are coming to stay and see the sights and my parents will join them after the 4th of July weekend. I am SO excited to see them and be the tour guide. Larry has gotten to do lots of different things with his company and runs lots of errands into important buildings its pretty legit stuff here. The east coast is SO different then the west, but I am starting to really like it, except sleeping on a air mattress that is getting old!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Smithsonian Anyone?

One of our favorite pass times is getting to walk through all the different amazing museums here in D.C. The best part is they are free! Most of the museums are on the national mall and some are farther out in the city, we like to venture all over and are making the most of the opportunity to live here. It truly is amazing to be here. Being able to hop on the metro and see our nations capital on a daily basis is priceless. Walking pass the monuments daily, the capital, pengtagon, sitting on the buss next to a Colonel or a General of the United Sates Militarily is pretty routine and awesome.

Anyways we really love the natural history museum it is huge. There is lots of animals but there is also a mineral exhibit, plants, and ocean parts as well.

Another great place we have hit up a lot lately is the national portrait gallery up in China town. It is right next to the yellow line which we can catch home and its open later so we can go on a weeknight after work. There is lots of sculptures, pottery, murals, and portraits.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Our favorite spot.

When me and Larry can't figure out what we want to do at night we usually end up sitting on the steps of the Lincoln monument eating dinner. We have had many important conversations on those steps. When to have a baby, what law school we will go to, where we want to end up, important things that are on our minds. Its a beautiful place to be and I love that its our go to spot if we are bored.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

The Home of George Washington.

So remember our awesome friends the Issacsons? Well the were nice enough to pick us up on Saturday and take us to Mount Vernon, the home of George Washington. We could have gotten there by metro via a bus ride but it was going to be tricky timing and they wanted to go just as much as we did! It was a lot of fun. It was HOT and STICKY and poor Brenna was nice and pregnant walking everywhere but it was so fun. We went on a fun boat ride down the Potomac and saw Maryland across the river. We waited in line to walk through the house and roamed around the compound. It is such a beautiful view and I can really see why so many people love Virginia. There also was a great museum that you can walk through a time line of Washington's life. Did you know that him and his wife Martha never had children and she was actually a facts I learn. I Can't wait to bring my family here when they come to visit us! {Soon}

Friday, June 12, 2009

Arlington Cemetery

Did you know that Arlington Cemetery is a stop on the metro? It is between the pentagon and Larrys stop which is in Roslyn Virginia. We can walk to the cemetery from Larrys work if we want and even cross the river to get behind the Lincoln memorial...Geesh I really can get myself around on foot can't I? We went to the Cemetery and walked around forever trying to find the famous WWII monument {ya know the one where the soldiers are pushing up the US flag?} well its not in the cemetery technically and after walking around everywhere in the humidity we gave up. Later I found out it is literally down the road from Larrys office building :)

The cemetery is beautiful and massive and definitely worth a stop. It was fun walking around looking at the different massive grave stones seeing who was who. Did you know Thurgood Marshall was buried there? Also there is the Robert E. Lee house that is currently being resorted. Did you know that the land what the cemetery is on was once Robert E. Lee's and was taken from him when the south lost the war. Pretty interesting stuff and some amazing land. His house is on top of a Hill and looking down you can see the national mall.

There is also lots of different small monuments to the nurses of the war and also the Kennedy's and the tomb of the unknown solider. We watched the changing of the guard and it was pretty powerful stuff. They even do it in the rain. The cemetery is vast and you can walk from one end and even see the Pentagon. We were pretty sweaty when the event was over and really it would be a nice place to come and eat lunch some days.

At the very end we say this statute to the 101 airborne and we had just finished watching the Band Of Brother Series so we were excited that we knew who these people were! It truly is a beautiful cemetery and place to bring your family to.