Archive for August, 2006

funny little interactions with the world…

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

I love all those funny little interactions with the world that happen when you least expect them.

Grocery shopping. Cereal aisle. Singing to myself to the Kroger soundtrack (John Mayer, No Such Thing) as I often do. Walked past an employee who was also singing to himself. After that little moment of recognition we wound up both singing along, in a nice little duet.

For some reason, it completely made my day.

Washington DC Trip Overall

Monday, August 28th, 2006

Thumbs Up
All the phenomenal sites and monuments around DC and the fact that they are all free!
United State Holocaust Memorial Museum
National Zoo
Paper Source
Segway Tours

Thumbs Not So Up
Poste Restaurant – I am sure it would have been better with a different server but still not great.
Hotel Palomar – I sent a complaint note on Friday evening when we got home but still have not heard anything. I’m not holding my breath. We shall see.

Washington DC Trip Recap – Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday

Monday, August 28th, 2006

Washington DC trip recap – Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, August 22, 23, 24 & 25.

Tuesday, August 22
Tuesday we got up and headed to the National Building Museum – this was something that Randy was very excited to see being in construction and all. The night before the season finale of NBC’s show Treasure Hunters was filmed in the museum and so there was still a lot of stuff from that around. There was a stage covering the fountain that usually dominates the middle of the main floor. The building itself was simply beautiful and I recommend going to see it even if you don’t look at the exhibits (which even Randy admitted were a little disappointing). The columns are among the tallest in the world and really very pretty:
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We had 2:30 admission tickets to the Holocaust Memorial Museum but wouldn’t have had any problem getting in without them as it was pretty empty. The Museum is very well done, very moving, and very powerful. I would encourage it be high on everyone’s list of things to see. However, I did almost tell off a family of 4 – the whole place is pretty solumn and quiet and they were anything but. The parents were just as guilty as the kids – some people should not be allowed in public. I loved this poster outside the Museum:
THINK (the next time you see injustice) ABOUT (the next time you witness hatred) WHAT (the next time you hear about genocide) YOU SAW:
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In addition to information about the Holocaust, the Museum had information about the sitaution in Sudan. If you don’t know anything about it, google “Sudan Darfur” – if you watched ER at all last season, the show focused a lot on Darfur and the crisis going on there even now. It is modern day genocide. It is horrifying. It needs more attention. It MUST be stopped.

Wednesday, August 23
We got up in the morning and had the first (of many) issues with our hotel – the ceiling in the bathroom was leaking. We went downstairs and found that breakfast in the restaurant (which was included in our room rate) was not available and wouldn’t be for the last 3 days of the trip. Annoying to say the least.

We headed out to The International Spy Museum which was well done but way too crowded. We would have enjoyed it more if they hadn’t packed so many people in at the same time! I am proud to say, I kept my cover and was allowed to leave the ‘country.’

From there we headed to the American and Natural History Museums. The AHM is closing after Labor Day and many of the exhibits are already closed in anticipation of the renovation – that was disappointing. Once we left there, we headed to the Natural History Museum and saw the Hope Diamond! It was beautiful. The center stone is a gorgeous blue and the white diamonds surrounding it and lining the necklace are just flawless:
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We got back to the hotel and changed rooms due to the leak and were told to order room service in lieu of breakfast at the restaurant.

We ended the day with a really wonderful dinner at 21P in DuPont Circle. The food and service were great and I highly recommend it – as a bonus, our waitress didn’t wander off once!

Thursday, August 24
Woke up the next morning expecting room service but they never picked up the door hanger! We called and ordered breakfast. It was delivered incorrectly. *sigh*

I really wanted to visit the zoo and see the pandas. We grabbed the metro to the National Zoo and got a few pictures of them:
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I absolutely love the gorillas, apes and orangutans so we spent a good deal of time in those areas. This guy was my favorite and he was flirting with me! He was sitting by a window gave me kisses through the glass. I would put ‘kiss’ the glass (no, I never actually touched it with my lips) and he would do the same on the other side:
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I know he could rip my arms off with no problem if he wanted to but he had the most soulful eyes – I wanted to take him home. I don’t know how he and Truman the Dog would get along though.

After the zoo, we made a trip to the National Archives to accomplish number 14 on the 101 list:
14. See the Constitution in Washington DC
I would have pictures of the Constitution but a nasty woman hindered that so here are a few pictures of the Declaration of Independance instead:
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Another Thing off the list!

Friday, August 25
After being assured on Thursday night that breakfast would be available in the restaurant, we went downstairs to find it closed again. Then we had to wait half an hour for our car because “a truck making a delivery to the hotel” was parked in front of it. Why the truck wasn’t moved is beyond me! All the little things that were wrong at the hotel compounded to be beyond annoying to just plain ridiculous. Too bad because the hotel itself was really pretty cool!

Another 9 hour drive and we got home to Lexington Friday evening.

It was a very nice vacation and sadly, the first one we have taken since our honeymoon nearly 4 years ago!

Washington DC Trip Recap – Sunday and Monday

Monday, August 28th, 2006

Washington DC trip recap – Sunday and Monday, August 20 & 21

Sunday, August 20
We slept in a little on Sunday morning and headed down to breakfast late. The three of us got our car and headed out to Mount Vernon, George Washington’s House. We took the Potamac River cruise (dubbed the “most boring U Turn in all of Virginia” by Randy”)

Mt. Vernon from the river:

Molly used to live in Alexandria so we headed there for lunch and to window shop. While window shopping we found that PAPER SOURCE had a store there. I was in heaven – we spent a good hour walking around and I could have spent a lot longer but Randy was getting grumpy. I stocked up on paper for my brochures and got some new things to play with – it was a very happy place for me.

The front window of my happy place and all the pretty cards and envelopes – second to the bottom is sage, EDEP’s signature color:

Once I was dragged, kicking and screaming, from Paper Source we picked up Andrew, my other cousin and Molly’s little brother, who happened to be coming into DC for work – kismet at it’s best!

We got dressed and went to the strangest dinner ever at Poste Restaurant.

Why was it the strangest dinner ever? Our waitress. I don’t remember her name but seriously, she was 100% out of it. We were taking bets about what substance she was on! She took about 15 minutes to get 4 drinks and while she was opening a bottle of wine she asked if we had decided on starters…and then wandered away! I kind you not! It was by far the strangest meal I have ever had – the food was good but our server was just so weird it kind of soured the whole meal.

Monday, August 21
Bright and early, Molly, Andy, Randy and I headed to Arlington National Ceremony. The rows and rows of white headstones are simple and understated but represent so very much:

We caught the shuttle bus to see the changing of the guard ceremony and a wreath laying ceremony – both of which were very cool to see in person and moving in their own way:

We dropped off Molly and Andy at the metro so she could catch her flight and he could go to work. Randy wasn’t feeling all that well so we spent the afternoon napping and hanging out in the DuPont Circle area.

Washington DC Trip Recap – Friday and Saturday

Monday, August 28th, 2006

Washington DC trip recap – Friday and Saturday, August 18 & 19

Friday, August 18
Because this trip came up pretty last minute (planned within a month), a flight from Lexington to DC was really expensive so we decided to drive. We spent allllll day Friday driving from Lexington to DC. It wound up being about a 9 hour drive. We checked into Hotel Palomar. We got into town around 7 or 8, grabbed a bite to eat across the street from our hotel and crashed.

Saturday, August 19
When planning the trip, my cousin (and dear friend) Molly mentioned that she might be able to come up from NC and meet us during the trip – I was very excited because she is going to be heading back to Iraq again soon and with us moving, I didn’t know if we would be able to meet up before her next tour overseas. It worked out that she was able to get a cheap flight on Saturday morning and got in as we were heading to breakfast. We had a bite to eat and then the three of us headed out and hit all the major attractions. (Clicking on any of the pictures will take you to a bigger version, I kept them small for quick download sake!)

Washington Monument and Korean War Memorial:

The Capitol Building and Lincoln Memorial:

Vietnam Memorial and the World War II Memorial:

World War II Memorial – Each star represented 1000 soliders lost. There were quotes etched all around the memorial from various dignitaries:

That evening, Randy and I went on the much anticipated Washington by Night Segway Tour. It was SO MUCH FUN! If you get the chance to do one of these tours, I highly recommend it! As promised the really embarassing pictures:

Randy and I in front of the White House and the Lincoln Memorial by night:

The REALLY bad pictures – how snazzy are those helmets?

Plane Crash in Lexington

Sunday, August 27th, 2006

My thoughts and prayers go out to everyone who was affected by the crash of Comair Flight 5191 this morning in Lexington.

May those who died rest in peace and may their friends and families find peace in their memories.

Stealing is bad. VERY BAD.

Sunday, August 27th, 2006

Another coordinator has taken it upon themselves to steal copyrighted material from my website and put it on theirs. Amazing. And the best part? It was my About page that she stole! And she is in Ohio!

It is weird because I was just talking with another coordinator about this happening to her!

This little line on every single page of my site means don’t steal:

2003-2006 Emilie Duncan Event Planning, Ltd. All rights reserved.

Is it really that hard to come up with something original?

The guy in the back returns!

Saturday, August 26th, 2006

Remember the two students lip syncing to Backstreet Boys?

Well, they’re all back! This time it’s Jessica Simpson’s song Public Affair.

Click here for all the lip syncing fun

Edited to add: they have a BLOG!

87. Contact my favorite teacher to thank them for their influence on my life

Saturday, August 26th, 2006

87. Contact my favorite teacher to thank them for their influence on my life

I found an email address for Mrs. Rocker. She was my 12th grade AP English teacher and she was amazing. Very soft spoken yet you never missed anything she said and the most amazing thing was the way she got her students to think. That kind of teacher is powerful.

A little of the email:
“I recently turned 30 and looking back on my life, I realized that I owe you a large thank you for your patience, knowledge and for being a truly wonderful teacher. AP English was one of my favorite classes even if it meant actually having to work. As my Mother likes to point out from time to time, I coasted through many of my classes in high school. Yours was one of the only classes that actually challenged me and one where I actually had to work to earn my grades. Thank you for pushing me. Thank you for making me think. It has served me very well in my life.”

I hope my children are lucky enough to have at least one teacher like Mrs. Rocker.

How to fold a t-shirt

Saturday, August 26th, 2006

Obviously, I don’t understand a word she is saying BUT this is awesome!

How to fold a t-shirt