the campas

the campas

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

#CampasRising- DC 2014

Back in February, Brian and I decided to go to DC for Memorial Day weekend.  Brian had never been there, and we wanted to go to Pennsylvania for a day because Brian hadn't been back since his mission ended 8 (eee!) years ago.  It ended up being the best decision ever...because even though it ended up being a chaotic week of moving and ending my job, it was the perfect weekend to go to the nation's capital and see Becky and Nate Jensen!!!

(side note: sorry in advance this post is so long.  just look at all the cutie pictures if you wish.  i noticed my posts are getting long and longer.  maybe my life is getting that much more interesting??)

So we started the trip on an unexpected note.  We found out the day before we were scheduled to leave that months ago, United Airlines changed us from a nonstop flight to DC to a layover flight that got us there 8 hours late.  Uhh..NOT cool!  I spent two hours on the phone literally yelling at people, and ended up getting us on a red eye that night.  So Brian comes home all excited to have a relaxing evening in his new condo with his wife, only to find me frazzled and yelling at people and frantically planning to leave 12 hours early hahah.  

We went out for Mexican dinner downtown in Pasadena, then Tim drove us to LAX and we hopped on the plane!  We didn't sleep, of course, and were so excited to get off in DC and find Becky!


Brian immediately fell asleep when we got to Becky's attic so her and I went shopping for groceries and made a Dunkin' Donuts pit-stop.



I ended up taking a big nap after that, and when we were both up and moving, we all went to Nate's house for a BBQ!  He made delicious hamburgers! 


We also learned Becky does not actually trust Nate at all....as she clearly demonstrated during the trust fall exercise.  Haha!

After playing PIG in Nate's living room (Brian is jealous of his man lodge), we went to the metro.  It took Brian 2 second to get yelled at for being on the wrong side of the escalator.  Not his fault, he didn't know!!


Our first stop was Arlington.  I hadn't been in years, and all the graves had flags by them for Memorial Day.  It was an amazing sight.

This is us struggling to find the right pose.  Fail.


Best to just stick to our classic.  Nailed it:

Kennedy's grave:

We came at the right time to see a changing of the guard ceremony.  It's amazing and touching to see. Brian really enjoyed that part.

We walked about a mile over to The Mall, which was poppin with tourists, and walked from the Lincoln to the Washington Monument, or as Becky says, WashMon.  Ha.

I kind of love this photobomb.  It adds a lot.

We rode the elevator up to the top of the Washington Monument, which was a first for me.  The views up there are amazing!!  You can see everything in DC!!


We were able to see the DC Temple.  Amazing!




We walked to Founding Farmers after our trip to the top.  It's a classic place to eat in DC.  I always forget how delicious it is!  Although I might not get the apple mac n' cheese again... 'twas very interesting.  

We went back to Nate's after dinner.  We watched one of the NBA playoff games on his huge projector.  So cool!  I want one!  Although, I quickly fell asleep on his beanbag.  Sorry basketball makes me zzzzzz.

The next day ended up being amazing and we were totally blessed for going to church.  When we sat down, Becky handed us her phone with a note open on it that said: "don't look now...bryce harper is sitting in the row behind us."  whhhhaaaatttt.  Honestly I couldn't pick Mr. Harper out of a crowd of two people BUT I have heard his name a jillion times and know he is a PBD (pretty big deal) because like half of DC walks around in their Harper Nats jerseys.  Plus I just love a good celebrity sighting, can't help myself.

Brian is on the left, Bryce is on the right.  The girl next to him we think is his fiancé's sister.  Again, we are totally TMZing that, we have no idea.

I guess he has never been to church before, according to Becky, and it was so fun to spy on him.  I will say he knew all the hymns and sang out.  Before the rest hymn Brian said (loudly) "time for the seventh inning stretch!"  Nooooo Brian...I died. Becky made me take these creeper shots because Nate wouldn't let her.  I told Brian I was in the bathroom heheheh I lied.

When we left Bryce Harper left right behind us, ready to make a run for home base apparently (i think I'm funny) so Nate was holding the door open for us and Brian said (again, loudly) "Nate please hold the door open for Bryce."  And he did, but I am sure Bryce Harper heard us.  I died again.

We left of Pennsylvania shortly after church.  I was SO excited for this part of our trip.  Brian had not been back to Pennsylvania since completing his mission in 2008.  His last area was Gettysburg, just a couple hours out of DC.  I have heard him talk about his mission so many times, so going to Pennsylvania with Brian was a treat.  I realize not many people get to go back to where they served their mission!

We made a quick pit stop at the DC Temple.  So beautiful!  It was closed, but we still got to see the outside.  We snapped some pics and hit the road again.


After a couple hours on the road and a few MoTab CD's later....we arrived in the state of independence!  We jokingly said we should take a pic in front of the PA sign.  Nate took that literally and actually risked our lives pulling over to the side of the road, and I am so glad he did!  I love this picture!

First top: the Battle of Gettysburg Museum, which is LEED certified....fun fact!

The museum is new and very well done.  They have a video narrated by Morgan Freeman which is amazing, and many displays and exhibits.  We were overwhelmed and struggled to retain it all, but it was fun to walk around.

Becky and I represented the Union by wearing these festive hats.  We would have lasted .0003 seconds in the Civil War.
The most unique thing about Gettysburg is the fact that it's surrounded by fields where the Battle of Gettysburg took place, and dotted with monuments honoring officials and individuals who were involved in the battle.  It's a massive thing to see, so we just drove around a little and saw the eternal flame, the largest memorial.

Classic PA.

Becks got ahold of my phone.  

This was the best part of the day.  We were able to visit two of Brian's converts!  This is Angie, she joined shortly after Brian left his mission, and is still very active!  She is so nice, and told me how much Brian influenced her and what a dedicated and good missionary he was.  I mean, duh, but still: *tears*

We also visited another convert outside of Gettysburg, but I forgot to snap a pic.  Boo.  But it was just as amazing to meet these people who Brian helped so much!



Here's Brian's old missionary apartment, which is also a Civil War building!  What!?  So cool!  He lived on the top floor and was so happy to see this place.


Soooo...Gettysburg is pretty and patriotic.  I wanna move.

We couldn't leave Pennsylvania without a trip to RITAS!!  This is where Brian fell in love with the east coast treat, and it was so fun to go to the classic stand, very different from the ones in the West.  We all enjoyed our treats and even convinced a small child to take a pic of the 4 of us.



As you can see, we were very happy about going to Rita's.  It was the best ending to the best day!  I am so glad we took this day trip, I'll never forget it.  S/O to Nate for driving us all across the land.

We ended the day by being forced to watch the painful slash hilarious Duck Beach documentary by NJ and Becky.  We also walked to Nando's so Brian could experience my all time favorite London eatery!


Next day=Memorial Day!  We were blessed early on by getting to the always crowded Georgetown, only to find the perfect parking spot right next to Georgetown Cupcakes!  What what!  We stood on the usual line and were overjoyed when we got to eat these little beauties:



We walked all over Georgetown and went in some of our favorite stores (Nike, J. Crew) and went to the river.  It was a gorgeous day!


We drove to the Nats game after that.  They played the Marlins and lost, but it was still fun!  Plus I got to have Shake Shack, nom nom nom burgers and cheese fries.


It was the best day to go to a Nats game!  They had many Memorial Day tributes and gave everyone little flags.  I am a sucker for a patriotic event.  I don't have confirmation but I am sure Becky cried at some point.




We went home and watched the Bachelorette and relaxed after the game, then decided to go out for dinner.  We went to a great BBQ place near Becky's neighborhood, then made a spontaneous decision to go to TC Williams, the high school portrayed in "Remember the Titans."  Brian loves that movie and was overly excited to go!  Seriously we saw all these historic and super famous places in DC, but he is most excited about visiting this high school.  Haha!

That night, we also learned Brian can jump hurdles.  There was one on the track and I was practicing and looking like a fool trying to jump it for like 10 minutes.  Then Brian just randomly does it out of nowhere like it's NBD.  Welcome to my life!

We drove to the Jefferson Memorial after that, and decided to walk to the various surrounding monuments to enjoy the beautiful night.



Taking the usual Roosevelt great depression picture.  I hope I never get too fat to fit in between the statues, because this picture is always a classic.

Being totes disrespectful to FDR....by taking awkward family photos around him.  Oops?

MLK!  One of the best.

The Lincoln was crowded as usual, but still beautiful.  This is my favorite memorial to see at night.  It just seems more majestic and breathtaking.  Brian loved it.  He also loved seeing where MLK delivered his "I Have a Dream" speech.




All the war monuments were decorated for Memorial Day.  It was incredible to see them and to realize how many people died so we can live in the great nation so comfortably.  We're so lucky!

We ended our night by jogging back to our car.  Haha.  It was a spontaneous decision but we were all tired of walking and wanted to get home quicker.  Solution: run!

Becky and Nate had to go back to work the next day, so Brian and I spent our morning enjoying some more sights around DC. We started with the National Archives.  Brian doesn't believe they're the real Constitution, Declaration of Independence, and Bill of Rights....boo...but I believe!  GBA!

We went to the Museum of American History afterwards and found this stone from the Nauvoo Temple.  SO cool.

After lunch at Union Station, we walked (slash jogged because we were late) over to the Hart for our Senate tour.  It was amazing!  We had our very own personal tour guide, and Becky made sure we had the VIP tour.  We got to go onto Senator Reid's balcony....

...and sit in the room where he has meetings.  Probs with Obama.  Just saying....we are pretty big deals for sitting in these chairs.

We also found the classic Brigham Young statue from the state of Utah!  Go Cougars!


The dome is getting repaired so it's covered in plastic...boo.....ugliness.

We had a great time on our tour and commemorated with a festive selfie.

After wandering over to Becky's office and possible sneaking into the Holocaust Museum just to sit in an air conditioned room.....we made it to Becky's new office!  It's super fancy with a great view and free Cokes for all.  Can I work there!?

Becky drove us through a massive surprise storm to Dulles, where our flight surprisingly took off on time.  

It was an amazing trip!  I have been to DC many times, but to go with Brian for his first trip made this my favorite visit yet.  I loved spending time with Becky and Nate, and of course also seeing Pennsylvania through Brian's eyes.  Such a memorable and fun trip, I don't know how it could have been any better!  Until next time, DC! ###