Fall in DC- so fresh, so fine.

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Good thing I finally got around to putting up this post as the temperature dropped to 30 degrees, eh friends?! Excuse my seasonal lateness here, but I figured I needed to get leaf pics out there before Thanksgiving or else I’d have to wait until next year to show you everything!

Walking around in DC in the Fall is THE BEST. As professed in my previous post, I usually hate fall, but I am down with Fall, at least a little bit, in this grand old city. One thing that makes me sad is that lots of people are not into DC. I just think everyone should come visit and I will change hearts and minds. I will feed them good food, I will take them to bike the monuments at night, we will drink coffee at Union Market, and minds will be BLOWN. I just like liking it here. I think lots of people would. And do!

Events these pictures are from: Going to Eastern Market with Bridget. Going to Union Market with the TAMily. Going to the National Gallery. Fall seems to be all about going places and seeing people and neglecting the blog even though I’m doing plenty of beautiful things. Life’s pretty good.

Know what happened at Halloween? We got tons of trick-or-treaters and gave out bunches and bunches of candy and the whole neighborhood gang of children showed up in one fell swoop. It was like a hostile child takeover of our front porch, and I loved it. Everyone is a princess or a superhero and spiderman makes just one too many appearances, but it’s great. I like living somewhere with more than one generation around. It keeps things fresh.

Have an AMAZING WEDNESDAY. I mean it.

Music Mondays: East of Eden by Zella Day


Good evening all! Today’s song is perfect for any activity. Late night dance party of joy? Check. Early morning wake-up motivation? Check. Introspective walk around DC? This is your jam.

I hope you had a good start to the week- let’s rock everything this week and say good morning in all our emails sent before noon.

P.S.- Listen to all the Music Monday jams on this playlist, and check out Anne’s musical post today too!

The Library of Congress on a rainy Monday.

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This is a post about a rainy morning at the Library of Congress on Columbus Day. On federal holidays DC’s weekend slumber extends, and it’s actually quite peaceful around here. New York may be the city that never sleeps, but DC is the city that sleeps well after a long work week.

The Library of Congress is beautiful. We walked up to it through a rainstorm that was unrelenting as the day went on, and stood in the line snaking out the doors and down the steps with umbrellas open, wondering what the big fuss was that particular day. It turns out that Columbus day is one of two days a year that the row-and-rows-of-cards, big-long-drawers archives at the library are open to the general public for marveling and amusement. How lucky!

Once you get inside the building the architectural complexity and beauty continues. There are lovely frescos, mosaics, and statues everywhere, not to mention a gorgeous set of windows in the ceiling. The main reading room is impressive- never in my life have I felt so much like I was in the library scene in Beauty and the Beast! A large portion of Thomas Jefferson’s personal library was also on display, and when he first collected all of his books on trips to Europe and around the world it was one of the largest collections of books in the United States.

One funny piece of our day was interacting with all of the obviously very overwhelmed librarians. They had no idea what to do with the masses of people suddenly disturbing what I imagine is normally a very tranquil and quiet workspace! I even overheard one older woman scoff at the visitors, saying to another older gentleman that “we have to open up the archives for all these young people who have NEVER EVEN SEEN a card catalog before! Can you believe it?!” I laughed. The tactile book hunting experience was definitely interesting to check out, but what a time consuming task to not only label all the books and cards but also find them once you needed them! What a luxury we have as students or readers these days, typing away on machines that let you make as many mistakes as you want and access the world’s information with the click of a button.

I hope you have a wonderful late fall weekend, maybe one filled with good books and copious amounts of tea. Bon Week-end! xx

Food for the soul in Shenandoah.

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Let’s just all take a second and take a deep breath.

Does anyone else feel like they need that today? No, seriously. Drop your bag right there on the floor, take off your work shoes, go wash your face, and just breathe.

….

Sometimes, living in the city, and walking through the streets, and rooting around in its mysteries and work and speed, I get overwhelmed by all the urgency.

“Now wait just a second!” I want to shout, right as I get squished into the metro car during my morning commute.

“Hold your horses!” I would mutter under my breath, as I write email after email after email after email to people whose names all blur together.

“Everyone just calm down!” I wish I could exclaim while I wait in line at the grocery store on a Sunday evening.

Usually I don’t say anything. I just move a little faster myself.

….

Even though DC isn’t a very big city, I do miss the outdoors something fierce sometimes. I think there are a lot of people here who do.

Sometimes you just need to go sit on a rock and poke around in some dirt and walk around on a hill where nobody has ever poured a concrete slab and hopefully nobody ever will.

Somewhere where the metro doesn’t run. You know that place?

….

How long has it been since you thought about milkweed? It’s funny how some things are distinctly from your childhood. Milkweed is one of those for me. I felt a little guilty every time I carefully peeled apart a pod and let the fluffy, soft seeds drift on the wind, further propagating a weed.

At least a monarch might eat it, someday. Right?

….

In Shenandoah last weekend you could see that Fall is here. Fall, in fact, is nearly over. On the tip tops of the hills all the leaves were gone, and the wind whips through the trees with nothing to block it now. I probably already told you, but I usually hate Fall. I find it depressing. In general I’m not into endings, and Fall feels like everything in nature is ending.

It was sunny and beautiful out, though. The sun sure feels good when you get to sit in it for a while. And I like the yellows. The yellows of Fall are the one part I like.

….

Not much more to say. Just a pretty sunset, and a deep breath today.

Life Lately [October]

Hey team. How’s your day going? I’ve been starting a lot of emails with “Hey team” lately. I think it conveys just the right amount of camaraderie and casual attitude while still being grammatically correct enough for work. Work is basically this all day: Email email email! Meeting! Email email email! Lunch! Email email! Meeting! Meeting! Email email email! It’s gotten busy, which is good. Being not busy is THE WORST.
sept141Speaking of work, did I tell you we went apple picking a few weekends ago? It was fun, but also still around 80 degrees out. I can’t say that picking fruit is nearly as fun when the minimal amount of physical exertion required to pick the number of apples you will realistically eat makes you kind of sweaty and really thirsty. Anyway, pumpkins were picked, apples were plucked from the branches of rows and rows and rows of trees, and I also bought some mums to put on our front steps. Basically our house looks SO festive now. If you walked by, you would at MINIMUM consider instagramming it. I mean, once I move the chairs that we picked up off the street out of the front yard. They looks so great [aka they looked really free] and good to have as backup outdoor seating [again... free] but once we got them home we realized that they had shed this weird green tinge from the paint all over our hands while carrying them. Sorry chairs, I think you’re headed to the great outdoor seating area in the sky.
sept143Since I had picked up a few pumpkins while out apple picking I artfully arranged them on our front step alongside the mums. Things were all fine and dandy until I came out one morning to find that SOMEONE thought it would be fun to gnaw away at the pumpkin I agonized over picking for MINUTES at the pumpkin patch. The nerve of the neighborhood squirrels, I tell you!
sept145I started half-assedly running again, too guys. I usually run a loop around the Capitol- it’s fascinating enough to distract me mentally and, as I learned a few days ago, is a magnificent place to look out over the city at sunset. sept146
Susanna came to visit this weekend, and we did A LOT. More to come soon- for now, have a wonderful Monday evening. xx

My First Motorcade, or “The President is coming and you all need to move.”


This post title sounds like a very weird type of Fischer Price toy that you can only buy in DC. But on a very serious DC newbie note- I saw my first motorcade last Friday! And the interruption in my day was everything I could have hoped it would be. Motorcades in DC are well-hated upon for disrupting traffic like nobody’s business, and if you need to take the bus to get somewhere and get stuck anywhere near one of these things you are probably screwed.

I came out of work on Friday evening and was waiting to cross the street when a police car came speeding up next to the crosswalk. From that car emerged an officer who was hell-bent on getting everyone off the street and clearing traffic, and clear traffic he did! He utilized screaming, wild gesticulations, and a very brisk pace as he ran around among the cars trying to get people to move. It was only when he had finally gotten all of the vehicles to pull off of the street that I noticed he was halfway through a huge cigar that he had been holding the entire time he was yelling at cars. Too funny!

I proceed to cross a few more streets before everyone was really on lockdown with the hope that I would still be able to make a speedy exit into the metro once the assembly made its way past. I eventually wasn’t allowed to cross any further, found myself a good vantage point, and proceeded to take the above video of the president making his way to somewhere, which you have to admit is pretty cool. At least for now- if I get sick of seeing this then I’ll be halfway to being a jaded DC resident already! :)

Music Mondays: Sweater Weather by The Neighborhood


I have two questions: 1) Since when is September already almost over? and 2) Where the heck is that temperate fall weather already?! It was almost 90 degrees this weekend, and that kind of heat does not a cozy apple picking trip make! Luckily I’ve got this song to make me think of gloomy-in-all-the-right-ways west coast beaches and big, thick British sweaters. Have a great fall Monday…. zoom zoom, October here we come!

Indigo near H Street

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Just a few minutes walk away from our house is an adorable little Indian restaurant called Indigo. It’s no-fuss Indian food- you stand in line, order, get your number, and then grab a seat in the expanse of tables and picnic benches outside until your meal is ready. I’ve been back twice in the last week; it’s just too good! We first went before walking around all the monuments last week, and it was good fuel for our long journey and oo-ing and aww-ing over big ol’ stone stuff. Plus it’s actually affordable- eating out in DC is a fickle beast, and it’s really easy to suddenly be spending over $30 on what was supposed to be casual dinner in no time at all. :( Indigo’s dishes hover around $10 a pop- not bad at all for all of the food you get and how straight-up AMAZING it is! If you’re ever near Union Station/H Street, you have to try it.

What’s everyone up to this weekend? I am going to work on a quilt, go to the H Street Festival tomorrow, and then catch some shorts at the DC Short Film Festival on Sunday! It’s an exciting line-up. Have a fabulous weekend!

If you go…

Indigo • 243 K Street NE, Washington, DC 20002
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A few good words.

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Katelyn found a job people; she’s moving to Pittsburgh! It’s going to be awesome. Before she left DC, she brought up some typewriter-written quotes I had put up all over my apartment in Chapel Hill a few years ago and how much she liked them. They were so great to have around! To replicate them for her new home, I made up a whole sheet of some of my favorites for her to take with her for the big move. We’re going to miss her here, but life will go on, and she’ll be back before we know it :)

This weekend was so pleasant- we hosted a visitor all the way from Germany (yay!) in the new house, had a wonderful Sunday dinner, and great weather (minus a rainy walk to to the Capitol for a tour on Saturday morning). The dinners are a new tradition- somebody makes dinner for everyone on Sunday night, and you can bring whoever you want to join in the merriment. We split the costs, and good food, conversation and fun are had by all to start off the new week. I made green curry last week, and this past weekend Bridget cooked up some chicken parm for the group. Yum!

Other than that, not much new stuff to report- autumn is creeping in, and the chilled evenings sure are a pleasant addition to life in DC.