Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Baltimore, D.C., New York, and two trips to Gettysburg.

Since it's been awhile since I've updated this (sorry/your welcome, depending on how you feel about my writing) I have a few things to write about.

About three weeks ago, Kelly and I went to Gettysburg in the pouring rain. It was so much fun! We stayed overnight in a cool hotel just to get away for a couple days and then the next day was packed full of Civil War stuff. Our first stop, tragically, was a crappy tourist trap "museum". I can't remember the name of it, but if you ever go to Gettysburg, skip the little museums and stuff on the main drag. We soon found out, 10 stupid minutes and 14 wasted dollars later that the place to go was the museum run by the National Park Service. SO COOL!

The museum was huge and awesome (and, unlike the other one, relevant to Gettysburg and the Civil War). The Cylorama, a huge 360 degree painting depicting the battle, is housed in the same building as the museum and is amazing! After filling our heads to the brim with all sorts of museum stuff for hours, we realized our stomachs were quite empty, so we left and had lunch at Dobbin's Tavern, which was built in the 1700s and was really cool and had delicious food.

After lunch, we walked around the Cemetery, also known as the place where Lincoln gave his famous Gettysburg Address. We were soaked from the pouring rain by the time we got back to the car, but we decided to do the auto tour anyway. We just followed the road and signs and drove all over the battlefield. Since we were wet and cold, we didn't get out of the car, but it was cool anyway.
Pennsylvania Memorial in the rain.

Overall, our trip to Gettysburg was a lot of fun!

Last week was Spring Break. On Friday March 26th, right after school ended, we picked up my parents, younger sister, Cami, and Jimmy the stowaway puppet at the airport. It was so fun to see them! I miss my family so much; I just wish Kevin and Bryan could have come too. Over the 4 days they were here we showed them around Baltimore, went to DC, went up to Gettysburg with them, and spent a rainy day in NYC.
They found bad Jimmy stowed away in Dad's carry on!
He always came on trips with us when we were kids,
but don't let him drive! Jimmy is a scary driver.

On Saturday Washington D.C. was beautiful. The cherry trees were blossoming, the weather was beautiful, and people were flying kites all over the mall! We hoofed it all over the place and Kelly and I actually got some pictures taken together! It's hard to be in the same picture when it's just the two of you. Moms with cameras are nice to have around.

Kelly, Me, Cami, Jimmy, and Dad in one of the Smithsonian Museums

Capitol BuildingCami and the Washington Monument (Jimmy's in her pocket)
Kites!Chillin' in front of Obama's house...seriously, I was cold.

Cami enjoyed Baltimore's Inner Harbor a lot. We spent Sunday evening down there, and I think she got over her fear of scary Baltimore while we were there. We got there just before sundown and stayed until after dark and it was gorgeous.

Cami, me, Dad, Jimmy, and Kelly

Monday morning we got up early and headed up to Gettysburg. It was so fun to see my dad excited to see everything. He knows so much about the Civil War and he was sharing cool anecdotes with us all over the museum and battlefield. I know I'm a History teacher, but I studied modern European History. I teach U.S. History, but my class picks up at Reconstruction, so I don't cover the Civil War. I really don't know much about it, so it was really cool learning so much from my dad. We basically did the same things on this trip that Kelly and I did previously, except no crappy museums and no Dobbin's Tavern, but I enjoyed it so much more being there with my dad! We also spent a lot longer on the auto tour and got out of the car a lot. It also was not raining, which was nice. We spent a lot of time around Little Round Top and at the high water mark.
Walking into the museum with Jimmy stowing away again!

That night, Cami and I had a sleepover at my apartment. She chose a movie to watch (fittingly, Hairspray, in honor of being in B'more) and we stayed up kind of late. She fell asleep on the couch and I broke sleepover rules and went and climbed into bed with my husband.

After about four hours of sleep, Kelly woke us up and forced us to get ready for New York. Cami was so excited to go! We drove about 3 hours up to Newark, NJ and then caught the train into the city. We were hoping to catch a show on Broadway, but had no luck. Instead we nonchalantly wandered around Times Square in the rain. We soon got kind of ornery because we were wet and cold. Except Kelly. He's never crabby, and it was his first trip to Manhattan so he was excited to be there come rain, snow, sleet, or hail. Or hurricane, monsoon, transit strike, or blackout. Fortunately our Crouch luck didn't cause a catastrophe this time. The last two times the Crouches hit NY coincided with the blackout and then a transit strike. Rain wasn't so bad, looking back on it, though it was my least favorite trip there. We ate at our favorite Little Italy restaurant, De Nico, and rode the subway all over and did some 5th Avenue shopping. One of our last subway stops was in Battery Park, and we all waited by the stairs down to the subway (there was cover from the rain there) while Kelly jogged to see the Statue of Liberty through the thick fog. He was happy he managed to get a glimpse of it. We'll have to go back a warmer day so he can have a real New-York-touristy kind of trip.

It was hard saying bye to my family that night, since they were flying out early early the next morning. Hopefully we'll make it back to Utah for Christmas to see them and talk on the phone with Bryan who is on his mission in Hungary. (Well, he's still in the MTC right now, but he'll have been in Hungary for months by then.)

The last few days of Spring Break I tried hard to get things done...and failed miserably. I read a sweet book called The Guernsy Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Sounds weird; it's not. It was wonderful! My mom bought it for me, and it was perfect! I enjoyed reading and napping and generally just relaxing for a few days. I don't really do that much at all anymore. Teaching and Hopkins classes keep me way too busy. Today was the first day back after Spring Break, and I have to admit, I was dreading it, but it wasn't so bad.

Now I just have to make it through Friday.


Georgia said...

Dani, I loved this blogpost! It was so fun to read about our trip from your perspective. We had so much fun hanging in your 'hood' and getting a feeling of what you are doing. I'm so happy to have the pictures in my mind of where you are teaching and going to school and shopping and doing laundry and all the other day-to-day activities. I feel closer to you now having those places and settings in my mind. (Maybe that's a Mom thing?...)

I laughed about Jimmy the Frog. He is such a naughty little thing. He has been sitting on the stair banister since your Dad unpacked his bag. He keeps demanding to be taken with us everywhere we go...I think he wants to drive the car again, but I'm pretty sure that our auto insurance would go through the roof if we allowed that.

I've been thinking about you all day and hoping your first day back to school went well for you and your students. Its April, not too many more weeks of school now. Hang in there.

Love you!! Mom

Becky said...

It looks like you had tons of fun! I'm very jealous of your closeness to all of those cool historic sites!

Love and miss my Dani friend!