VA - Finally

I really was not happy about coming home from VA, and I'm not still not really happy about being home. Last time I went there and came back, coming back wasn't very hard, but this time around I had absolutely no desire to go home. My overly creative brain kept hoping crazy things would happen that would prevent us from going home, like losing all my ID's or terrible constant storms canceling flights, forever. So I have been in the dumps about it since and haven't really wanted to edit the pics. But I finally got around to it, and felt mopey about it, as expected. But going through lots of these rather comical pictures did make me laugh.

I'll admit that I took a lot of photos with my iPhone. The photographer in me is sighing. But it really just makes it so easy! So enjoy a mix of DSLR and iPhone.

When we landed my dad picked us up from the airport we drove to dinner with the rest of the family at the very yummy Sweetwater Tavern.

If you are ever in the VA or DC area make sure to hit them up and make sure to get their Warm White Chocolate Bread Pudding. Dave had their Drunken Rib Eye Steak which he has been craving ever since! I will have to find a recipe!

I can't believe how grown up Jess and Christina are. Truly. When they walked into Sweetwater it was just so crazy to see how tall they both are. Their faces don't match their bodies! Skype really doesn't show age very well in someone. Why hasn't someone made the Floo Network into a real thing yet?

And we then got to see their new house! They built and moved into this house last October in a very nice community that they have really loved. Megan was also lucky enough to find a job at a local gift shop that is maybe 5 minutes from their house. I got to meet her employers who seemed really nice!

Reunited! I never realized how much I loved dogs until I had to live apart from Prudence, yes, as in Dear Prudence, whom we call Pru for short. She really is just the most darling ball of fur! My parents also have another dog, Sophie, who is getting old, spends most her time hiding under the couch, and only loves Megan.

 The first full day we were there we went to the Holocaust museum, Megan, Dad, Dave and I. It's not the happiest place on earth, that's for sure, but still good to go.

And after that we went to the museum of Printing and Engraving - aka money.

For lunch we went to a burger place in DC called Good Stuff Eatery. I had a TBA (tomato, bacon, avocado) turkey burger. My favorite thing from the place was their dipping sauces. Call me crazy but they had tons of options for dipping sauces. I honestly don't remember them, I only remember one, their mango mayo. Seriously, it was amazing. We also all got free shakes! My family is steller at getting free stuff. Seriously, like good karama or something always follows them around.

For dinner I helped my mom make homemade sushi. Yeah, homemade. We made a California roll, a Vegas roll and a spicy salmon roll. It really wasn't too hard and was all very yummy!

(I think) the next day we went to some antique stores. So many antique stores! I wish we had all these awesome options in Utah! Here are just tons of awesome antique store photos;

Now my days are getting mixed up but I next made our favorite Chipotle Chicken Lime soup! It was a little on the spicy side (sorry Jess) but still good! I then made my lovely Coconut Macaroons which no one liked except Megan. Oh well.

Dave, dad and the missionaries (dad is the ward mission leader) went to Udvar Hazy Air and Space Museum while the girls went shopping.

Where they live has over 40 miles of walking trails so we took the dogs out for a walk a couple times. Pru is getting better about walking without a leash! Go Pru!

During our walk, being the klutz I am I, of coursed, slipped and got all muddy. Thumbs up for you if you know what my dad is mimicking here. 

Christmas morning was great, as usual. Mom made this yummy cinnamon pull apart bread. So unhealthy but so good!

This last picture above shows Megan after opening one of her gifts -- a empty camera box -- for the camera dad gave her a month before. LOL The box had been accidentally stuck in with all the other Christmas gifts and mom just wrapped it, not realizing the box was actually empty. 

Pru is a daddy's girl.

This was the feature for breakfast, cinnamon pull apart bread. So yummy!

We just hung around at home that day. I did a phototshoot with Jess and Christina. I miss shooting my sisters! They are are my little muses (is that a word? Sure)! I definitely hate not being able to shoot them whenever I want.

 (Don't worry, I'll post more in a post all on their own! So many lovely pictures to share of my lovely sisters...)

For dinner Mom made her oh so yummy Chicken Cordon Bleu! So yummy! And of course we can't leave out shrimp, our family must have.

My mom also made her amazing Fairy Cupcakes. I made these myself just this weekend. Boy do these take some work! But they are so totally worth it! (Her cookbook with the recipe is only $0.99!)

The day after Christmas we got some snow!

And then we saw the Hobbit! Loved it!

For lunch we went to Coastal Flats, which is owned by the same company that owns Sweetwater Tavern. Dave got their Mahi Mahi and devoured it! The rest of us were only like a few bites into our meals when Dave was done.

Later that day my mom introduced me to the dish that I will crave forever and ever. It was just a round of Brie cheese topped with dried apples, walnuts, some other nuts, craisins and caramel. It was amazing. Sadly it wasn't homemade, it was just something they bought from the grocery store of all grocery stores, Wegmans. I'll have to come up with a recipe of my own.

We then went to the Botanic Gardens in DC and the Native American Museum. For lunch we went to a pizza place, the name of which I don't remember, but it was right next door to the burger joint, Good Stuff Eatery. Yummy pizza! And then I devoured more fries and mango mayo from the burger joint (I love eating my feelings).

Mom was really in love with the little fairy village at the botanic gardens. So cool!

The last day Dave and Dad went to the Marine museum and my mom took me shopping. Yay, lots of new clothes!

I thinks that's pretty much everything! I will do another post including just my sessions with the girls, family photos, and my series of things you won't find in Utah!

And in case you haven't gotten enough --- here are all of the (DSLR) photos from the trip;

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