Category Archives: Museums

New favorite Christmas candy

Well after 4+ hours in the car, I finally made it to Richmond last night. I hate hate hate 95. I had a really fun day with my stepmom today though. We headed out to see the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, but decided to go to the Virginia Historical Society first. We spent so long in there that we never made it to VMFA, but I’m excited to come back and check it out. VHS had some neat exhibitions. We saw one on oddities in their collection (Jefferson Davis’ cigar and some cool trepanation instruments). I did a project in college that included trepanation (nerd). They also had a small room that showcased 5 notable Virginians. They had a portrait of each and then blew up certain sections of the portrait, which I thought was really cool. Then we spent the bulk of our time in the main exhibition on Virginia history. It covered everything from pre-European settlement to the present. It was a really extensive exhibition and I could’ve easily spent a couple more hours to really get to read and study everything.

Afterwards, we drove up and down Monument Ave. and looked at the Christmas decorations on the houses. I wanted just about every house I saw. Gretch, we really should run that 10k this spring! We came home and got to cooking. We made lasagna and I helped Kathy get stuff ready for her New Year’s Eve party. Lasagna was crazy delicious, pretty excited to eat on that for the next few days.

Woah, Jimmy Fallon just said something funny. That was weird.

Anyway, I’ve been eating these nonstop for the past hour:

Sike! I just tried to upload the photo for 10 minutes. No dice. iPhone app fail. Well, can you guess what my new favorite candy is?

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Filed under Family, History, Museums

Labor Day Cooldown

Well, Labor Day weekend came and went and it seems to have taken summer with it. We had perfect weather over the weekend which worked out really well for Mike’s parents’ visit on Sunday. We took them to Eastern Market, where sadly, I didn’t take any pictures. I was too busy looking at everything! I found a few things I liked, including a really cute apron, but ended up not buying anything. I did want to get some produce, but we were gonna go to museums after and I’m not sure the staff would have liked me lugging my peaches through the Library of Congress. Oh well.  The joke was on me though. Turns out the LoC is closed on Sundays. Boooo. Be open like every other museum in DC. We were bummed because I love the LoC and Mike had never been and I don’t think his parents had either. I guess we’ll just have to go back.

Instead we trekked down to the Botanical Gardens, which were open, thank you very much. We spent awhile strolling around the gardens and saw pretty much everything there was to see (except the butterflies). I got some pretty flower pictures too and Mike decided we needed to “do something manly” for dinner. I still say it was his idea to go to the Botanical Gardens though.

I’m not much of a flower person, but there were some pretty cool flowers and plants there.

I have more to post later, I’ve been so busy with classes starting last week (and all the Buffy I’ve been watching). Priorities. It’s gonna be a crazy few months though!

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Filed under DC, Museums

T.G.I.The Weekend.

So I actually wrote half of this yesterday, but never finished it…so here’s to some weekend blogging….

Finally. The week is over. What a week it has been…I won’t miss it one bit.

For most of the summer I’ve been obsessed with iced coffee, but this morning I had a bit of a brisk walk to the metro and my office has been even chillier than usual, so I opted for a nice cup of hot tea. I think part of me just wants to believe that Fall is closer than it actually is, but that’s okay.

Fall in a mug

That’s my trusty work mug. I love it. I bought it in Atlanta while I was on a work trip. While we were there, we went on a tour of the CNN studio. Ever since it has been my “work mug” and has even come to my new job. It makes me miss traveling for my old job, we had a lot of fun on those trips and we’d always manage to find a really good steak, mmm! (I skipped breakfast, can you tell?)

This past week hasn’t been all bad really. Last weekend was fantastic. My best friend, Jess, was in town from Colorado again…well technically she was in Williamsburg with her parents, but they invited me down for the weekend and I was more than happy to go. It had been years since I spent a weekend with the Lunsfords and her parents are amazing. Plus they’re all really into history too, so they’re my people 🙂

We went to Fort Monroe down in Hampton on Saturday afternoon. I had never been there before and really didn’t know anything about it, but they had all been there and thought I should check it out. It was beautiful! It’s a fort right along the Chesapeake Bay that was built in 1819 and used during the Civil War. It became a safe-haven for slaves during the war because slaves would escape from Virginia and go to the fort and the soldiers at the fort wouldn’t return the slaves to their owners in Virginia since Virginia was a foreign country to them. I thought that was really cool. Also, after the war, Jefferson Davis was held prisoner at Fort Monroe for about 2 years. The exhibit they had on Jefferson Davis was really interesting too (they hung a giant American flag in his room!) I could’ve stayed there all day. The area was gorgeous, there were plenty of picturesque buildings, an old lighthouse, and everything was right by the water. I didn’t take as many pictures as I would’ve liked, but I can definitely see myself going back and spending more time there.

Jefferson Davis' Cell

Then we went to a Norfolk Tides game and ate some good ballpark food and drank some beer…made for a pretty great evening. It was a great weekend with the Lunsfords and reminded me a lot of high school (minus the beer).

The other highlight of my week was meeting up for dinner with my friend Harry. He left for Somalia today for the next year and I’m so glad I got to spend a little time with him before he took off. I’m so excited for the adventure he’s going on (working at a school there) and I can’t wait to hear all about it, but I’ll definitely miss him being here. Harry is one of those people who I know I will have fun with no matter what we do. I talked to him some about blogging and I hope he’ll start one while he’s there, it’d be a great way to keep up with what he’s doing over there. Good luck buddy!!

Harry and me

Other than that, I spent most of the week being stressed out about work and not feeling very well…not the ideal way to spend my last week of “summer vacation.” Not that I had any kind of vacation. Classes start next week though, and I’m pretty excited about them, I think it’s going to be a great last semester!

Well, time to get some work done and get ready for dinner, it’s Restaurant Week in Alexandria! I’ll leave you with a picture of the “art” Mike created with our purchases from the farmer’s market the other day.

The pepper eyebrows are my favorite!

Have a great weekend!!

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Filed under Friends, History, Museums, School, Uncategorized

Busy Busy Bee

Sorry for the lack of posts. Between moving, finishing up my internship, work, ending Spring classes, starting summer classes, and anything else and can manage to squeeze in there, I haven’t had too much time to blog. I haven’t forgotten about it though. I fully intend on a write-up of my Monticello trip, but I have a big paper to finish up in the next week or two, so that is going to have to come first. I’m working on a paper supporting the use of social media at historic sites. I’m actually planning to mention Monticello because they do such a fantastic job. Check them out if you haven’t done so:

http://twitter.com/tjmonticello

This one they just added not long ago. They tweet from Jefferson’s journals, 200 years ago to the day.

They’re also on Facebook!

For as large of an historic house as Monticello is, and for as many visitors as they get, they do a great job of interacting through social media and making it a two-way road. I hope more museums and historic sites follow their lead.

Well, that’s all I have for now. I need to read for class tomorrow. Apparently we have the hardest reading of the semester first…I guess that’s good?

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Filed under Blog, Facebook, History, Museums, Tom J, Twitter

Not to brag, but…

I secured my summer internship today! It’s here:

Photo: David Bjorgen

I know, I’d be jealous too. Seriously though, I could not be more excited. I’ve been coming to Smithsonian museums since I was a little girl, but to actually be working in one…wow. I’m so excited!! It’s going to be hard to get through these last few weeks at Sully. It will be quite the change of pace going from a small house museum to a fast-paced Smithsonian museum on the Mall. I’m actually working on a project that I worked on for a class last semester. We created banners using Adobe In Design about GPS. Mine was about who is in charge of GPS and why that is important. The banners were displayed for a few months in the museum. I’ll be working on an exhibit that is a larger version of that, developing the themes and doing a lot of research. Here is the press release for the exhibit:

http://www.nasm.si.edu/events/pressroom/releaseDetail.cfm?releaseID=223

It’s a really cool topic! I had a lot of fun researching for my banner last semester and it sounds like there will be some neat things to get into with this project. I start in June, so I’ll pretty much be going straight into it from Sully. I also am starting a class in two weeks called “Culture of Consumption in Early America.” Basically, what I’ve realized is I won’t have a break at all between now and when I finish my masters. It’s going to be a crazy eight months!

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Filed under Museums, School

Boxtown

I was really hoping to get started on my post about Sunday’s adventure, but instead I spent the night working on stuff for a meeting tomorrow about an internship tomorrow (I’ll be sure to update about that!) and working on some packing.

Here’s the current state of our living room:

I managed to pack up one of my bookcases tonight (the largest one), so that was an accomplishment at least. It seems like slow progress for sure though.

In other news, I gave two tours today at Sully. One was to a group of ESL students (English as a second language) and then a group of five older ladies. I feel like my tour is finally getting pretty good and I’m becoming more comfortable with it. It’s hard to believe I only have a few more weeks left there. I still have SO much work to do before I leave!

Mike and I had a very full day of history on Sunday so hopefully I’ll get that posted tomorrow because it was a lot of fun!

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Filed under Apartment, History, Museums, School

Routine

I was talking to my sister last night about my blog (Hi Twila!) and mentioned how hard it was to get into a routine of writing. She said if I do it every day for two weeks, then it should be easy to do. I’m taking her word for it. The hardest part of blogging though is not always having something blog-worthy to say, but I really want to stick with it. I hope she’s right!

I was at my internship today. I only have three weeks left! I’ve been giving more house tours lately and to be honest I’m not a huge fan of them. I’ve never been big on public speaking. I tend to talk very quickly and fumble over my words a lot, so the idea of having to do this for an hour is none to pleasing. I’ve had such different experiences giving tours though. A few weeks ago I gave a tour to a group of teenage girls. They were stranded here from England because of the Icelandic volcano! I didn’t think the tour went well at all. They didn’t seem very interested and I felt really unprepared going into it. When they left I felt really discouraged. Today was completely different. I gave a tour to a middle-aged couple (much better than 20 high school girls). They were originally from Spain and the man works for NASA and is in the area doing research. They were fantastic visitors! They asked tons of questions, were really interested in the house, and were very complementary of my tour. They had a lot of information to give as well, comparing the house to other places to visit and commenting on how much we take for granted compared to what they had back in the 1700s. I really felt on top of my game knowledge-wise as we went around the house and I really enjoyed talking with them. It’s funny how different tours there can be and how they can change your day!

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Filed under Museums, School