Monday, October 21, 2013

Fall Changes

Things have been changing around here, but I guess that all started in the late summer...

We moved into a new home the weekend before Labor Day.  We are in the same neighborhood, but we changed wards.  It was bittersweet to leave so many friends, we were there for almost 9 years.  I can't say that I wasn't a little grateful to have Mike released from the bishopric, however. :)  It was a blessing to have him serve, but we are excited to have him home on Sundays again.

Our new home has beautifully landscaped yards, front and back.  There is a square of dirt, perfect for a little garden.  I am unsure if we will get to plant one, because the boys have taken it over as their personal digging pit.  Oh the joys of mud and dirt for little boys!

In the midst of settling into a new place, we are trying to rent out our condo.  We have a few minor finishing touches, but the big stuff is done (like Mike rebuilding the master bath shower, from the studs out...) and still looking for someone to rent it.  So stressful!

On top of this, Mike is changing jobs today and that will be a new challenge for us, as well.

Oh, and did I mention I have started a little business of my own?  Yes, I have made a few custom little boy's ties and I am also making busy bags and quiet books.  I am excited and worried about balancing all of this.  Still working on getting a site set up for this and possibly starting an etsy shop...

Then Halloween is coming up and my boys have decided that they want to be Ninjago Ninjas, so yards and yards of colored cotton broadcloth, pleather and fabric paint, here I come!

Oh, life is full and busy and a little stressful, but it is good.  So good.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Last Full Day in D.C.

Our last full day in D.C. was full of museums and much lighter on the walking.  (Thank goodness for that, because all of our feet needed a rest after the massive amounts of walking we had done the days before!)  We took the Metro in to the Federal Triangle and paid a visit to the J.Edgar Hoover building.  We were lucky enough to get a tour inside and visit the closed to the public FBI museum, after a lot of security checks.  I mean a lot of security checks, no cameras allowed.  It was fascinating.  Thank you to our connection for making that possible. :)  Here we are giving our best "special agent" poses.  Don't we look intimidating?

We walked through the Butterfly Habitat Garden as we headed to the National Gallery of Art.  There were gorgeous flowers and butterflies aplenty.  A perfect little oasis to see some of nature's masterpieces before seeing some of the great man made masterpieces.

The only DaVinci in the Western Hemisphere.  So many interesting Renaissance works to see.

The boys were a little less than thrilled with all of the art.  Luckily there were lots of couches to lounge in and some boy-friendly works of art, like this huge depiction of David in the lion's den to draw them in.  Mr. Three and Mr. Four spent lots of time napping through this visit.

But for me, this was a "bucket list" moment.  To see works by Monet, VanGogh, Rembrandt, and many of the masters was a dream come true.  It was tempting to touch them, but rest assured, I had lots of self control, and if I lacked that, the many friendly, yet very present, museum guards definitely discourage you from any such attempt.

Our last museum stop was to the National Museum of Natural History.  This captured the boys' interests much better.  We saw dinosaur bones, mysterious and strange ocean creatures, a giant whale, mammoths, insects, mummies, and lots more.

The area we spent the most time in was the rocks and minerals section.  There were rooms filled with every rock and mineral imaginable:  from lava rocks and copper mines to the Hope Diamond.  We could have spent a lot more time here and in other parts of the museum, but sadly, it was closing time and we had to head home. 

 At Carla's apartment, we ended our day with quesadillas and a rousing game of Color Slap with the kids.  With an evening of laughs, full tummies and tired bodies, the boys drifted off to sleep while the adults chatted and packed up the bags for our return flight home the next morning.

This was truly a dream come true trip, and we are so grateful Carla helped make it possible.  It was hard to get up that next morning and get on a plane to head home.  Goodbye beautiful architecture, rich history around every corner, cool breezes and green, green landscapes.  I truly hope we have the chance to explore D.C. again, when the kids are older.  For the present, we will be happy with the memories and can relive the fun through our pictures.