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WMATA Holiday Cheer (No, Really)

14 Dec

It’s not often I find a reason to laud anything related to WMATA, but this morning I found myself singing a different tune (literally) because the Farragut West metro station has been turned into a center of holiday cheer. Honest to goodness I swear on my life, people were smiling and in great spirits leaving the station. No, really. I bore witness to this once thought impossible feat.

What could prompt people to audibly say something nice about metro during the morning commute? Well, sometime in the past week or so holiday decorations appeared at the station -ribbon wrapped around rails, bows, candy cane poles, and a wreath or two. But, this morning the #WMATA employees had taken it up a notch with the addition of icicle lights to the booth and MUSIC!

That’s right – I exited that station to the merry sounds of Christmas music and lights! While it’s nothing grandiose, I really appreciate the effort to spread some cheer. If I had to guess, I think it’s the fantastic WMATA employee who usually stands in front of the gates and says good morning to all the customers. She is awesome and if she is responsible for the decorations she is doubly awesome.

Does anyone else have decorations at their metro stations?

 

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A Menu Worthy of the Gilmore Girls

6 Sep

Impressive and delicious, this cake is a great finish to any girls night!

After all the fuss, Earl turned out to bring perfect weather to DC for the holiday weekend. Sunny and breezy you couldn’t help but spend time outside, unless of course you decided to hold a Gilmore Girls marathon like me.

I know, I know – Why would I host a TV marathon on such a perfect weekend? Thinking Earl might ruin my pool dreams I had already set my heart on a Gilmore Girls day…

Since @Akmcquade and @Fleuredeflorida were up for the gathering, we spent Sunday drinking, dining, and watching TV.

Thankfully @Akmcquade is in love with Gilmore Girls as much as me and understands the need to watch the show for hours on end. I finally have someone who gets all my show references and doesn’t look at me like I’m crazy!

No Gilmore Girls event would be complete without a feast, so I put together the below menu (sadly no pop-tarts, pizza, or Chinese food):

Everything was easy to assemble, colorful, light, and delicious. Can’t wait for our next Gilmore Girls event!

Future Star of Step Up 4

9 Aug

In Step Up 2, we took it to the streets. In Step Up 3D, we experienced dance battles up close and personal.

And now, after watching the below video, I’m going to suggest that in Step Up 4, we have a battle of the generations.

Sculpture Garden Fountain Running

5 Jul

Food, wine, and fun at Jazz is a weekly tradition. Photo by TeddieN.

Jazz in the Sculpture Garden is one of my favorite summer DC traditions. The fact that we can lounge on the National Mall sipping wine, munching on snacks, enjoying live music, and kicking back after a long week for free is remarkable. If you have never attended, I recommend joining us next Friday especially after what happened this week – fountain running and crazy announcements. That’s right, fountain running. I think it’s primed to be a new DC sport.

The crowd at Jazz is tame for a bunch of 20-somethings averaging a bottle of wine per person. At the end of the day, people respect the park and privilege to picnic for an evening.

But this week, Jazz took a turn toward mayhem with the introduction of fountain running. I firmly believe fountain running started because of the pre-event announcement telling everyone not to get in the fountain. You can “dip your toes in,” but you can not, under any circumstances, get in the fountain. Thanks for letting us know Sculpture Garden. You just gave all of us a grand idea!

Honestly, traipsing through the fountain has NEVER crossed my mind. EVER. One, the park is crowded. I don’t want to fight my way up to the water. Two, it’s probably gross. Who knows what sort of creatures live in there. Three, what if I get my clothes all wet? Yuck.

I’ve never seen anyone  get in the fountain in the four years I’ve attended Jazz. I’m not saying it hasn’t happened. I’m just saying it has never been a “problem.” Not this week (which seems ironic considering it wasn’t even hot).

This week, about half a dozen couples charged across the fountain at the conclusion of Jazz to the delight  of everyone in the park. I don’t know who started it since I was on the outskirts of the fountain, but once the the first couple took the plunge everyone followed suit.

With the crowd chanting and cheering, pair after pair charged across to the other side, some more successfully than others. I witnessed a number of trips, falls, and flops during the excursion, which only egged on the crowd more. And, it wasn’t just young adults breaking the rules. A mother even ran through with her child in tow.

Of course, the fountain running was not appreciated by the park and the announcement to vacant quickly followed. But this wasn’t any announcement. Oh no. This was the announcement of all announcements. Why?

1. The girl making the announcement threw her voice in the hopes we would take her more seriously.

2. She kept telling us to exit immediately in her crazy voice. Over, and over, and over, and over.

3. She even tried to convince us to leave by telling us to put on our shoes.

4. Two of the exits were closed, but we needed to EXIT IMMEDIATELY.

5. No one bothered to move for at least 30 minutes.

The announcement was so great, I even have a little audio clip for you to experience a taste of the evening. You’re welcome!

Fourth of July Alpharetta Style

4 Jul

The city of Alpharetta puts on an impressive fireworks show each year at Wills Park. I haven’t been home for the holiday in a number of years and wasn’t the least bit disappointed after DC fireworks. The hometown advantage is being up close and personal with the show. The fireworks explode directly over your head and you can see the ash falling to the ground!

My 15 mins of Top Chef Fame?

24 Jun

Shortly after @dmbosstone posted his re-cap of last night’s Top Chef DC: Hail to the Chef my inbox started filling up with new messages. Odd right?

WRONG!

It turns out I am mildly famous in the DC blogging world today! We Love DC’s Patrick Pho selected my profound, 140-character insight tweeted out during the show last night as his “Tweet of the Day.” SCORE!

If you watched, you already know that this week’s challenge was to make a healthy school lunch for the students at Alice Deal Middle School. Like Patrick, I also loved this challenge because I believe that our society needs to do a better job teaching healthy eating habits at a young age.

However, in true Top Chef fashion all of the menus seemed out of place for the school lunchroom. Last time I checked the types of ingredients  being tossed around the Top Chef kitchen are only used when feeding the Romanov kids.

Which leads me to my now famous tweet:

valerieelstontweet

You read that right – sherry. As in the alcoholic substance sometimes used to cook with and create that awesome “flame affect” when you pour it in the pan. Just a standard ingredient on every school lunch menu where the lunch ladies have time to braise the main course.

Oh well, I was impressed with some of the dishes turned out on a $2.68 budget per child.

Now that we are Twitter friends, I’m trying to convince Patrick that a viewing party is in order! We can live tweet it up and have our very own quick fire challenge. I think it’s what the people want…

DC Dancers Take it to “The Streets”

28 May

In case you missed this awesome video on DCist a few weeks back of DJ Mad Sole and friends breakdancing on the Metro you need to check it out. The video received a lot of negative comments on DCist, but I disagree. I would love to encounter breakdancers during my otherwise trite commute home!

I also love this video because it reminds me of one of the best dance movies of all time: Step Up 2: The Streets. (That’s right, I called it one of the best dance movies) Since I don’t have time to create a fun mash-up, you’ll just have to settle for watching the clip I found.

Enjoy!