December 24, 2009

Winter Wonderland

"The first fall of snow is not only an event, it is a magical event. You go to bed in one kind of a world and wake up in another quite different, and if this is not enchantment then where is it to be found?" 
 J.B. Priestley


Washington DC saw 18-22 inches of snow the weekend of December 18th. It started snowing on Friday evening and we woke up to pristine snow the next morning. I had not seen this much snow since I was out west 2 years ago--so it was really a treat! It's convenient to live within walking distance of most of your friends. I was able to walk over to Kern's for a homemade breakfast and Katie, Laine, and Charles' for homemade chicken noodle soup!

It snowed all day Saturday and by Sunday the sky was clear and blue. Most of these pictures are from Sunday. I played in the snow both days (of course).

Hello from Washington! I put my ski clothes to good use

Kern and me on the east side of the Capitol while it was still snowing!

View down East Capitol from Kern's house

Patty, my car

West side of the Capitol. I wish I had skis for those steps!

Plenty of people took advantage of Capitol "Hill." We tried to buy sleds but they were sold out everywhere!

Snowman, National Christmas Tree, Mall, Washington Monument

December 20, 2009

Holiday Events in the District

I love tradition. I love looking forward to it for a year, I love planning to make it happen and I love experiencing it over and over. Tradition brings stability and a sense of security.

The Polar Express

One of my favorite traditions from college was when my RUF campus minister used to read The Polar Express to us every December. Last year I started doing this for my friends, and this year the "reading" was bigger and better.

Jordan and Buck were kind enough to lend their home--complete with a roaring fire, pajamas, hot toddies and various home baked goods. Afterwards, Jordan was the emcee and directed everyone to tell his or her favorite Christmas memory or tradition.

The Lighting of the Capitol Christmas Tree

The Christmas tree is a blue spruce from Arizona this year. It came nearly 4,600 miles to make its home on the front lawn of the Capitol for the month of December.


Ice Skating in the Sculpture Garden

We had a great group meet up for ice skating on a perfect Saturday.

Kern and I rode our bikes then started the performance off right with delicious cups of hot chocolate with tons of whipped cream

The backdrop for the skating rink is the The National Archives


PROS

I am looking forward to adding traditions each year I am in DC. Next year, I want to do Christmas at Mount Vernon and see the Zoo Lights. There's not enough time to do everything...

Christmas at the White House



I went to the White House with some of my co-workers, and my roommate, Ashley. It was during the Holiday Open House, so we got to bring our cameras.

This is the "Wish Tree." Each person could write a wish on a piece of paper and put it on the tree. I didn't do it. Oh well. I have a personal connection with Santa so I'm not worried about my wishes coming true.

While I was walking down the hall (same one as in this picture), guess who ran out surrounded by police and a armed guards? Bo, the First Family's Portuguese water dog. This is the only shot I could get of him:

In front of a fireplace in the East Room:

The Washington Monument from the Blue Room:

The White House Christmas Tree located in the Blue Room:

WHO DAT?!

The State Dining Room with a painting of President Lincoln by George Healy:

Ashley and me in front of the Presidential seal in the north corridor:

December 13, 2009

The Advent Season

Christmas is only 11 days away--hard to believe! If you want a more accurate count, I have placed a "Countdown" in the right column of my blog. There are so many things that I love about this time of year, but I truly enjoy being still and considering Jesus. It's so simple, but easy to forget.

Many churches observe the Advent Season. I have copied a blurb on Advent from the Grace DC website:

The word advent means “coming” or “arrival.” It is a four-week

period in which the church remembers the promises of Jesus’ first

coming, and looks forward to his promise to come again.


The Christian Church has observed some sort of Christmas season

since the 4th century. There was always a period of preparation

before Christmas Day, which varied from between three to seven

weeks. In the 10th century the four week pattern was finally settled

(so we’ve been doing this for a millennium!). European Christians

used greenery and candles to enhance the season, and that practice

has caught on in the United States, and around the world in recent

years.


The Advent wreath itself is a tradition that is centuries old. A

candle is lit during and for each week of advent, until Christmas

Eve, when all five candles are lit. Four of the candles are purple,

which is a penitential color: a symbol of self-examination and

preparation. They remind us that, just as the prophets and John

the Baptist called Israel to “get ready for the Lord”, we need to be

doing the same thing! The white candle, or “Christ candle,” is lit

on Christmas Eve. This reminds us that it is not all “preparation”

– he really came and will really come again.


If your are interested in looking at an Advent guide, check out Grace DC's.


The best part about Christmas is that it doesn't end on December 25th. (I know some of my friends are rolling their eyes because they think I am too obsessed with Christmas). I don't mean the presents and decorations--I mean the fact that Christmas was just the beginning of Christ's ministry and mission on earth. Consider this verse from Hark! The Herald Angels Sing:


"Hail the heav'n-born Prince of Peace! Hail the Son of Righteousness!

Light and life to all He brings, Ris'n with healing in His wings

Mild He lays His glory by, Born that man no more may die

Born to raise the sons of earth, Born to give them second birth

Hark! The herald angels sing, Glory to the newborn King!"


We sang this hymn in church tonight and I have read this verse repeatedly--particularly the line, "Mild He lays his glory by, Born that man no more may die." As many times as I have heard the Christmas story, this never ceases to amaze me. He became a human willingly--to save me from my sin and secure a place in Heaven for me. That realization is so humbling. I did nothing to deserve this, but I am a free recipient of His grace and eternal life. This line is also a comfort. It reminds me that my relationships here on earth that are based in Christ will never end--they will simply continue in Heaven.


Isaiah 40:5 and Revelation 22:20:


"And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken. He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.”

Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!"

December 07, 2009

My Birthday



The first meal I ate as a 24 year old was a bowl of Lucky Charms. I think that means I'm headed for a stellar year.

On Thursday night, I thought I was going to dinner at Good Stuff, but instead I walked into a surprise party at Top of the Hill. There were Hello Kitty decorations, party horns and gifts. Needless to say, I was very surprised. I didn't exactly have a cake, but I did have my very own "birthday torch."

On Friday, I actually did get to go to Good Stuff for lunch, which was excellent. That evening, Kern and I went to Cactus Cantina in Glover Park for dinner. Then it was off to the National Cathedral to hear Handel's Messiah, one of my favorite musical compositions.


We had a great time and the setting was beautiful. Kern also had fun tinkering with the self timer feature on my camera. See results below....


One of the best parts of my birthday weekend occurred the day after my birthday. Kern took me to Revolution Cycles and let me pick out a bike for my gift. I chose a Trek 3700. I have been borrowing Buck's bike for the last month and half and riding all over DC. I could not be more thrilled to finally own a bike.

While we waited to the bike to get tuned, we ate brunch at a diner and watched the snow fall. By the time we got back to the Hill, the snow had turned into rain, but I had to try my new bike out. I think it is fitting that my first bike ride was to the Capitol.



December 03, 2009

Welcome

Thank you for reading my blog! I'm looking forward to sharing my thoughts, ideas, and views with you.

The dictionary definitions of my chosen blog name describe my goals and reason for starting to blog:

in·del·i·ble (ĭn-děl'ə-bəl) adj.

1. Impossible to remove, erase, or wash away; permanent: indelible ink.

2. Making a mark not easily erased or washed away.

3. Unable to be forgotten; memorable: an indelible memory.

in·sight (ĭn'sīt') n.

1. The capacity to discern the true nature of a situation; penetration.

2. The act or outcome of grasping the inward or hidden nature of things or of perceiving in an intuitive manner.

Once I post my thoughts, they will always be available to view—I cannot "undo" a blog. I hope you will find the events and ideas that I choose to write about will be interesting, funny and perceptive.