Great Falls is one of my favorite places and I was super excited to take Luke there on our trip. Ann and I took him the scenic route through McLean and Great Falls, VA and as we were pulling up to the entrance we noticed it was blocked off! There was a woman there that told us the park was closed…we couldn’t believe it! We decided to drive Luke around some other areas and show him our old house and then try the park again. Thankfully, we lucked out and the park was open when we returned. Apparently it had been closed because it had reached its max capacity. I guess Great Falls is a popular place to hangout over Memorial Day weekend. Ann and I had fun climbing on the rocks and taking pics…but I’m pretty sure we scared Luke to death 🙂After spending time at Great Falls we headed to Reston Town Center, where I lived before moving to Ohio and meeting falling in love with Luke! I wanted to show him my old apartments and the Town Center. We started off with some wine at the Tasting Room followed by dinner at one of our favorite restaurants Rio Grande.
While we were in DC we spent a couple days being tourists because Luke hadn’t been to Washington since his 8th grade field trip! So, we headed out one morning to tour the monuments and check out the Natural History Museum. Highlights included the WWII Memorial, scaffolding on the Washington Monument and the IMAX movie, The Ultimate Wave at the Natural History Museum 🙂
Our trip to DC began with Ann taking us for a tour around where she lives. She lives in the Navy Yards which used to be a not-so-nice part of town but has really been built up over the past few years. She lives within walking distance of the Nationals Stadium and the Capitol. In fact, you can see the capitol from the big windows in her condo. Unfortunately, as you can see from the picture below, there is some construction going on that is eventually going to totally block her view 😦 Sunday morning we headed to St. Peters on the Hill where we met Kerstin, a friend of ours from Franciscan. She is now a counselor in McLean, VA and had just moved to the area a few days prior to our visit! Following Mass we had brunch at a cute French restaurant in a neat part of town. Then we headed over to Eastern Market where we browsed through the different booths. My favorite was the Polish pottery and jewelry. Ann and I each bought a pair of earrings for my brother’s wedding and Kerstin found these really awesome decorative panels to use as a headboard in her bedroom.Sunday evening Ann and I went out to take photos at sunset and we came back to find Luke enjoying himself in the hot tub 🙂 So we continued our shoot with Luke as our model…I think he had fun!
Luke and I returned from vacation about a week ago. We were in DC for five days with my sister and then we drove down to C-ville for my brother’s wedding. I took about a billion photos so I’m going to be posting them in installments. One of the evenings I was there, Ann and I decided to go out at sunset to practice taking backlit photos. By the time we left her place the sun was already setting so we only had about 20 minutes of light. Below are a few of my pretty sister! Ann was also practicing but she was using her own camera so all of the pics of me are on her camera except for one at the very end 🙂
Luke and I were in Charlottesville, VA for my brothers wedding and while we were there I had the opportunity to take my cousins Senior photos. Jake was a good sport putting up with my sister and I telling him where to stand and how to pose. I hope you have an awesome senior year Jake!! 🙂
Luke’s mom, dad, sister and little brother came to visit us! We had a fun visit filled with a trip to the beach that ended in a front row seats to a wedding!! Mini golf, a ride on Cruise Naples where we viewed how the other half live 🙂 We learned that out of the 300 billionaires in the United States, 100 of them have homes in Naples…so they say! We ended the evening with dinner on Fifth at Cafe Luna…which ended up being a great choice! Live entertainment started at 7:00 pm with El Gato Solea and he was very much enjoyed! Never seen such a happy performer in my life! Talented, too! The highlight was the little girl that got up to dance with him. Adorable 🙂 The weekend ended and I had to head back to work but the fun didn’t stop for Luke and his family. They spent an entire day in Tampa having lots of fun at Busch Gardens and Adventure Island. Then one evening after work, we even went to see a movie at a fancy movie theater in town. All together great time. We were sad to see them go 😦 But so happy they were able to make it out!
My old roomie and good friend Sara came to visit us! I haven’t seen her since my wedding over a year ago so it was so wonderful catching up. We had a great time lounging at the beach and checking out downtown Naples. I wish she could have stayed longer! I miss her already!! We are gearing up for some more visitors tomorrow. Luke’s mom, dad, sister and little brother are coming to town. We can’t wait!! 🙂Sunday evening we had dinner on Fifth Avenue at a Yabba’s Island Grill. We had eaten there once before with Luke’s dad and brother and knew it was a good choice. After dinner we headed to the Pier for sunset. Unfortunately, it was a pretty cloudy evening so we didn’t get a sunset…but it was still beautiful. The beach always is 🙂
Happy One Year Anniversary to my sweet husband and I 🙂 We were blessed to celebrate our anniversary at a fancy hotel outside of Hood River, Oregon called the Columbia Gorge Hotel. We had a couples massage, complimentary champagne and breakfast in bed! We are officially spoiled. Thank you to Luke’s parents, Ann and John! The hotel is about 2.5 hours outside of Luke’s hometown. Upon arrival we walked around the cute town of Hood River and grabbed some gluten free pizza…mmm, before heading to our hotel for the evening. We had an awesome time! Yay for one year! Can’t wait to celebrate many many more anniversaries! 🙂
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Luke and I have been spending the Holidays in Oregon with his family. We’ve been having so much fun visiting with everyone and spending time at their cabin in the mountains which can only be reached by snowmobile! Below are some pictures of their cozy cabin 🙂Their cabin is located in the Blue Mountains of Eastern Oregon. Every other year they spend Christmas up there. It is quite a lot of work to have Christmas at the cabin…but totally worth it 🙂 They prepare by hauling up all the gifts, food etc on sleds attached to snowmobiles a few days before so that we’re all ready to go Christmas Eve after Midnight Mass. After Mass we drove up to the mountains and from there we jumped on snowmobiles and it’s about a 30 minute ride. As you can see…we had a very white Christmas! I had lots of fun taking pictures on my NEW awesome camera! (Thank you sweet amazing husband!!!) I went out one evening with Luke and his sister Laurie and was excited to catch some pretty gorgeous light as the sun went down 🙂The rest of the pictures are from Christmas day. Below is a glimpse into the cabin and a few of our gifts. It was warm, cozy and relaxing. We’re so thankful to be able to spend time with family and extra thankful to have such a nice place to spend it at! 🙂This last picture was taken as we arrived home from the mountains. Luke’s beautiful hometown, Heppner.