Saturday, February 27, 2010

bounce back

a few weeks ago, I began to feel that DC had lost its luster, what with the snow-mania, indoor activities and all. It made me sad and scared me that this wonderful city was become passe. I wanted to regain that magic feeling I felt when coming out of the metro and on to the mall for the first time when I was 13.

Today was just what I needed.

My morning gym trip turned into a morning run on the most beautiful day I've had here. I ran to my go-to monument, the Lincoln Memorial, and took a trip to the Vietnam Memorial, and it hit me--this place is amazing. My morning jog took me to places people come on vacation. I live in the center of the free world, walk where the greats walked, and am in the middle of innovation, genius, and change. It feels good.
Coupled with the perfect girls shopping morning, frozen yogurt, eating Bill Cosby's favorite chili dog at the famous Ben's Chili Bowl, and some adventures around town and in the Barlow, I realized I am right where I need to be.

don't worry, The magic is back.

Friday, February 26, 2010

roberts of the world--unite!

I haven't had a tour guide in this town who wasn't named Robert.
Bob at the National Building Museum (we got in trouble)
Rob at Valley Forge (sad and probably hungover)
and now new Bob, who loved answering my National Treasure 2 questions.

New Bob introduced me to my new favorite place in DC, the Library of Congress.The Library of Congress gets 20,000 submissions for new entries every day. wow.
I didn't have much time to explore beyond the tour, but you better believe I'm going back to get my readers card so I can go to the main reading room!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

nyc, round 2

Remember when I went to New York like 7 years ago? yeah, here it is...
President's Day weekend in New York was absolutely amazing.

Please indulge me with this long, (stolen) picture-heavy post, as I present the ABCs of NYC

A-- American Eagle. They have one of the biggest screens on Times Square, and we got our picture up there...twice. basically famous. BYU Interns, Barlow Babies, Rawr Rawr Rawr, Provo, UT. We're a big deal.B-- Brooklyn Bridge. Newsies style. At night in the freezing cold, but seeing the lights of city was amazing.C--Central Park. lovely.D--Diner. A cute local place with real New Yorkers, accents, good food, and locals. Welcome to the Sunday Breakfast Club.

E--Enchanted Pizza. Patsy's, where they ate in Enchanted. such good pizza. hello, James Marsden.

F--Frick. The Frick Collection was amazing art in a fabulous house. I loved learning how Mr. Frick lived his life and hearing the stories about every piece of art he had and how it all had a spot with purpose.

G--Ground Zero. still powerful, years later.

H--hot chocolate. Who knew Dunkin Donuts was so good?

I-- ice skating man. The most amazing ice dancer man at Rockafeller Center, with a scarf, some dance skill, and a beat all his own. Who needs to skate in a circle when you can ice-waltz with yourself?
J--jumping picture. Washington Square, where Will Smith lived in I Am Legend.

K--Knights Templar. They hid their treasure at Trinity Church (Heere at the Wall...Wall Street and Broadway). We couldn't find the crypts or treasure stairs, but I know its there somewhere.L--Lego creatures. FAO Schwartz (home of the Big piano) and Toys R Us. Amazing.
M--Mary Poppins. We had box seats because we're that swanky. The music, sets, and production were amazing, but the plot was meh. Bert tapdanced and sung on the ceiling. Mary Poppins flew across the audience.N--nationality, my own. Little Italy, Grandpa Ernie would be so proud. great food and so quaint.

O--Oh, Lady Liberty. I'm not gonna lie, the Statue of Liberty is kind of disappointing in real life. She's short. And the Staten Island ferry was as freezing cold as it was free.
P--piano man. To the man playing incredible piano in Washington Square as the locals listened and meandered, thank you. You made my life feel like a movie.Q--quilted potholders. My favorite book for sale on a corner table was boldly called "Potholders!"

R--roses from the Barlow boys. Thanks for the Valentines Day present

S--shared bathroom. Our hotel was cheap, but had zero ammentiies. 17 of us shared 1 bathroom. bonding.

T--temple. We got the chance to do baptisms at the Manhattan LDS Temple, which was absolutely amazing. It's crazy that somewhere so peaceful and important can be right in the middle of a bustling city block.U--underground rats (as in the subway, but S was already taken). I saw them, they are huge.

V--very cold. It was freezing the entire time. Except when it wasn't, which was rare.

W--Wall Street. Cooler than I thought, partially because of the excitement of the boys I was with and because we found where George Washington gave his first inaugural address.
X--X-treme getting to the bus. Don't worry, we made it.

Y-- You've Got Mail. One of the many wonderful New York movies

Z--zoo, the confusion that is the NYC subway (used in a sentence: wow, the subway is a zoo)

Monday, February 22, 2010

My view from the gallery unto the House floor tonight was something spectacular.
330+ Representatives. Mostly white. Mostly male.
I loved seeing them interact, seeing who was sitting by whom, who was wearing what. (Jared Polis, I loved your Vans and suit combo), and trying to match names to the faces I've seen on TV.
They didn't pass any groundbreaking legislation (re-naming two post offices), but I'm glad dear Congresswoman Foxx was there to explain the secrets of the House to us. Nancy Pelosi can sure bang that gavel loud.

But the best part was the tour afterwards. Through Statuary Hall and the Rotunda, but this time no one was there. We owned the Capitol. And on to the Rules Committee Chamber and the Congressional Women Reading Room, accessible only with Representative escort. Back through the tunnels, the Capitol Subway, the Members Only elevator, and outside to a rainy, DC night.

It was amazing.

That you, dear Dr. Foxx, for taking us AIM interns on a great excursion. I can see why you have Potomac Fever.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

To the U.S. Capitol,
I'm glad we finally met. You are quite beautiful and I look forward to seeing more of you during my exclusive tour tomorrow.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

I know it's incredibly cliche, but I love the Olympics. so much. Every two years, I am reminded of their glory, splendor and stories. Visa says it so well: "Go World". The Olympics really do bring people together.

The last time Bob Costas graced my television screen, Whitney was getting married and everyone was in town. Who can forget that Sunday night, piled in my family room, watching Michael Phelps and the relay? amazing.

Now, every night the Olympics crew meets in the basement of the Barlow. We critique and talk and laugh and gasp and celebrate the triumphs of Team USA and athletes around the world. Because people can do amazing things, and the Olympics celebrates that.

go world.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

hey george

I have a paper due this week about the Founding Fathers' ideas of government. I keep trying to do research, then I come back to this.
I would consider it an educational activity.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

snoverkill? oh yeah.

Today I accidentally stepped in a slush puddle, thinking it was just a layer of ice, but it was really the edge of the curb, plunging my already soggy foot into 5 inches of ice cold slush-water.

Days 1-4 of snowmagedon = exciting
Days 5-6 = fading
Day 7 = lame-o.

I'm so ready to get out of this...
and into this...4 days in New York City!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

my life in a playlist

let it snow
baby, its cold outside
once there was a snowman
cabin fever (muppets treasure island)
king of new york
empire state of mind
nyc (from annie)
new york, new york
the district sleeps alone tonight
on the wings of love

I haven't had work for the past 2 days due to snow, 15ish more inches expected tonight, so probs no work tomorrow. it's great...until the cabin fever sits in. hopefully it all clears up for New York this weekend!(picture from this weekend in valley forge, pa)

Sunday, February 7, 2010

birthday blizzard...aka snow-pocolypse

So DC got 28 inches of snow in 24 hours...literally the snow of the century. and where were we? snowed in at Valley Forge, PA of course.
Back track.

We arrived at the Freedoms Foundation in Valley Forge, pre-snow, and went on a tour of the park.This is Rob, our tour guide. He could play the fife and has been giving Valley Forge tours for 14 years, so he knows his stuff.Unfortunately, this is as exciting as Rob's tour got. He called us "Rob's group" to get us to follow him, as if there was some confusion about who our tour guide was. We were the only people in some 100+ acres of Valley Forge.We were on and off the bus all around VF, and we did learn some cool facts. The huts behind us in this picture? historically inaccurate. they were built in the 1950s and don't look like the original huts. Rob made us get out and look at 3 different groups of them.
(Valley Forge was good for Matthew, who got to sit on a log with 8 girls)
After the tour, it started to snow. Hard. All night. We woke up in the morning, ready to head to Philadelphia, but we were snowed in. After hours of games, we were resigned to spending another night. We even celebrated my birthday in the cafeteria after lunch. My birthday wish was that we would make it back soon. 10 minutes after making the wish, it stopped snowing, 4 hours earlier than predicted. coincidence? who knows, but it was my defense when I was fined for being snowed in on my birthday in the Barlow Court. (which, was incredibly enertaining)We boarded the bus, leaving this behind, snow up to our knees, and slowly drove back to DC. The 3 hour drive took 7 hours and we had to circle Baltimore for a few hours to find an open road. Our bus driver Al was a stud, and we made it back to DC.The night ended with a massive snow fight, lots of whitewashing in front of the Barlow, then scary stories and a "campfire" in the basement.


and a snow day from work tomorrow. so excited.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

this weekend

(this will be us. minus the snow)
leave 8am tomorrow
drive to Valley Forge
meet Ben Franklin. Ask him my prepared question
Eat ice cream with Ben Franklin.
spend night in Valley Forge.
have a birthday.
drive to Philadelphia.
reinact National Treasure
eat a cheesestake sandwich
fix crack in liberty bell
drive back to dc.

weather: blizzard. snow-pocolypse. 12-24 inches up and down the east coast. the grocery store shelves are clean from people stocking up to be snowed in all weekend.
but for some reason, a bus full of BYU interns will be trekking through the snow to re-live history and celebrate this girl's 21st birthday.

wish us luck.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

hillary and joe used to be frenemies

maybe it was because I was sitting in a desk all day, but I thought this was incredibly funny. Last year, took President Obama's inauguration and other events and turned into a spoof of some MTV reality show. the guy who does Barack's voiceover is spot on.

there's a whole series that you better believe I'll be watching over the next few weeks!

also, I saw the secret service tonight. outside a swanky restaurant in georgetown. way to go, barack. I know where my next dining experience will be.

Monday, February 1, 2010

practically famous vol. 2

check it out.this is the BYU homepage. see me surrounded by some of my favorite people?
why did this happen?
BYU has a pretty amazing PR program that I'm blessed to be a part of. We were recently named top 5 finalist for the PR Week PR Education of the Year award, along with some other leading schools. It's quite the honor. PR Week is the best of the best.
But I can't say I'm surprised, because BYU PR is the best of the best. I have learned so much during my time in the PR program, love my classes, professors, fellow students, and opportunities to learn and become a real professional.
The winner with be announced in March. It's tough competition, but I'm excited.

one month.

Today is February 1.
One month ago today I was flying across the country, unprepared for this adventure and having mixed emotions.
my hometeachers asked me last night how the whole Washington Seminar/internship/Barlow Center thing is compared to what I thought it would be. Honestly, I didn't really think about it. I was too busy with the craziness of last semester to think about anything except just getting here, not about what would happen after. But honestly, this has been so much more than I could ever imagined. In the last month, I have experienced more, learned more, bonded more, and definitely laughed more than I ever thought I would. I have grown to see the potential in others and in myself, and I am loving (nearly) every minute of my time here. It's crazy to think I'm over 1/4 of the way done with this!

some favorite pictures from January:
washington! (Utah may have gotten in the way of my excited pointing)
this was one of the first days. crazy.
ok, so only my green sleeve is in this picture, but it was one of the greatest nights. also, the night we broke otis the elevator, who has been making strangely pained sounds ever since.