A Weekend with Mom


Mom came into town on Wednesday and we had the BEST time with her!

Tuesday: Random story: There was a fire drill in the Longworth Building. Fire drills usually take at least an hour out of your day, because security has to sweep every room and then everyone comes back through security to get into work. To kill time, my co-workers and I went to the Library of Congress and used our congressional IDs to get into the rare book room. And guess what we thumbed through? A first edition copy of the Book of Mormon signed by Martin Harris--once given as a gift to someone by Joseph Smith! It was amazing just to touch its pages. And even though I knew all the words would be the same, it was neat to see an original document and be like "Hey! That's exactly what I read in my scriptures!"

Wednesday: Mom flew in after I finished working. I had a lecture to go to for Washington Seminar, so she and Brock went into Georgetown and grabbed frozen yogurt for a mom/son-in-law date :) Then we gave her the grand tour of our 300 square-foot apartment. She was blown away, I tell you. Blown away.

Thursday: Mom went to a morning lecture at the Brookings Institution about human trafficking in Southeast Asia. After work we went to the Kennedy Center, where there are free concerts every night at 6PM. That night the concert was Colombian folk music--it wasn't really our bag, so we all got tickets to a play that night called "Shear Madness."

We laughed out butts off. The show was whoddunit murder mystery with improv and audience participation. I kind of got really into it. "Carried away", maybe? At one point, the detective was questioning a suspect on his whereabouts during the murder:

Suspect: "I was in the bathroom."

Detective: "Really, now?"

Suspect: "Yes. Do you want me to re-enact everything I did in there, too?"

Me: (double fist-pump) "YEAH!!!!!"

Four seconds of crickets . . . then audience bursts into laughter.

Suspect: "You are one sick woman!"

Friday: I started the morning off giving a Capitol tour to not only my mom, but to my aunt, uncle, and cousins (who were in town for my cousin Phil's swearing in at the Foreign Service!).

Mom wasn't able to go to the swearing-in ceremony, so she visited Arlington National Cemetery. We met up after for dinner at Annie's Steakhouse in Dupont Circle. My mom had a coupon she wanted to use (classic mom), but it was only valid with a $100 food purchase . . . so we ate tons. It was pretty standard steakhouse fare, but the service was great. Our waiter had been serving there for over thirty years, and the older waitress in the section next him had been there for over forty! Even the people dining around us were so friendly. 

Saturday: Mom and I hit up Eastern Market in the morning for some breakfast and shopping! We hit the jackpot with a few vendors--I found some wispy, floor-length silk skirts to wear in Jordan ($15!) and my mom bought an adorable skirt made of patches of vintage fabrics.

Then mother dragged me to a salon to chop off four inches of hair. ONLY MY MOTHER could make me do such a thing! It was needed, though--the ends of my hair were completely fried. I actually love my haircut! And hopefully it'll grow faster now that most of the dead stuff is gone :) PLEASE, HAIR?!?!?!

We returned to Eastern Market to meet up with Brock, where he and I introduced my mother to the heaven that is Good Stuff's toasted marshmallow shake. Then we walked over to our favorite bookstore (my mom bought Brock Freedom by Jonathon Franzen as a reward for his finishing War and Peace), and to the Library of Congress.

Our plans that night revolved around dinner with my relatives at an Ethiopian restaurant in Adams Morgan called Meskerem (Phil's first tour is in Djibouti, which borders Ethiopia). Before heading to dinner, my mom and I made a quick detour to her hotel room and soaked our poor, tired feetsies in ice water. It felt so good.

Meskerem was fantastic! Ethiopian meals are communal--everyone sat on stools and ate from big huge plates of food. Also: No silverware! They have a very spongy bread called injera. Not only is food served on a huge circle of injera that soaks up the flavor of the meat and spices, you take other pieces of injera with your fingers to pick things off the plate. AWESOME.

To cap the day off, Brock and I took everyone on a three-hour night bike tour around the National Mall. (How we had energy for this, I don't know.) We hit up everything--the Vietnam, Lincoln, Korean, and WWII memorials, the Washington Monument, and the Jefferson and FDR memorials along the Tidal Basin.

Sunday: Oh, you thought my mom would be out of energy by this day? HA! We got up early in the morning for a quick visit to the White House (not inside--I wish!), and then off to church. My mom got to see the DC 3rd Ward in alllllll its glory. I love Sister Mack--the old woman with no teeth who stands up and sings gospel songs as her testimony (the congregation sings along!).

You got to staaaand your test in judgement
You got to staaaand it for yourself
Ain't nobody else can stand it for you
You got to staaaand it for yourself

I love Brother Kamosi, who was exiled from the Congo for political dissidence and now makes it a point to introduce every single visitor, every single week to the entire ward.

I love all the recent converts who breathe such life into the gospel and whose insights are just beautiful.

I love how everybody starts off their testimonies by saying "Good afternoon, brothers and sisters." And everybody says "Good afternoon!" back to them.

I love the soul! "Mmmmmm dear Lawwwwd I was a sinner befo', but now I seen the light and it done turn my life around. I love this church and I love this gospel, thank you Jesus." You just don't get that stuff in Utah, ha ;)

After church I bid mother adieu at her hotel. She wore us out, but it was well worth it! Love you, mom!


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