Feb 12 2010

We Survived The Snowpocalypse Of 2010

by posted in Events, Snow

The DC area had two back-to-back storms this past week dumping snow like it was going out of style. Kristina and I spent the snowpocalypse together staying warm and having fun.

Friday started off with everyone in the DC area getting off of work early in anticipation of the big storm. The snow started falling around 1pm. By 3:30pm I measured accumulations of 2 inches or so around the apartment. Throughout the evening the snow kept coming down. Kristina, the roomies Josh and Denise, and I went sledding down our steep hill right outside our front door. We didn’t have any proper sleds, so we tried a few things that we had laying around the apartment. A plastic Ikea bag and a plastic container with wheels did not work at all. But the slick-bottomed boogie board was a hit.

When we came back in we spent the rest of the night watching Funny People and Groundhogs Day.

The snow fell throughout the night and we woke up with a good foot on the ground and it kept snowing all day (see a timelapse of the snowfall in Glenmont). Around 11am we got our snow gear on in anticipation of another sledding session. Just before we left, our power went out. Thinking nothing of it we continued on to our hill. Kristina brought her snowboard along and there was plenty of fluffy snow for a smooth ride.

After sledding we came back to a powerless apartment. The sun began to set and boredom was setting in. To pass the time we played a rousing game of Monopoly which killed several hours. As darkness overtook daylight we began to get hungry. Luckily the snow had stopped (but not after dumping 30 inches of snow in our area) so we could venture out to our nearby shopping center in search of food. The only place open was, of course, McDonalds.

Hooray, McDonalds is open after the Snowpocalypse!

The restaurant was hopping as other locals without power had also flocked there for some relief. After filling our bellies we stopped by CVS to stock up on candles to light our dark apartment.

Later that night we started to worry about the food we had in the fridge. Kristina and I keep a cooler in the back of my Rav-4 which came in handy for storing our food on our deck. There was so much snow that in order to get to the back of my car I had to shovel snow to get the door open.

My Rav-4 was completely buried.

We spent the rest of the night playing the card game asshole and having a good time despite the lack of power or the dropping temperature of our apartment. Everyone was sleepy but I still had some energy so at 1:30 am I went out to shoot some night shots of the snowy landscape.

The tree by our apartment covered in snow.

That night we all went to bed in long sleeves and several blankets to keep warm. It was actually quite cozy.

The next morning we were still without power/heat/hot water. Fortunately the roads were passable and Josh’s parents had power. We made the trek up to Laurel to hunker down until our power came back on. Our friends Pammy and her husband Chris stopped by and we all went sledding at my childhood middle school, Hammond Middle. The snow was knee deep and untouched which made for some awesome sledding runs.

Kristina sledding down a hill at Hammond Middle school.

After sledding we got hot showers and settled down to watch the Saints beat the Colts in Super Bowl 44. We spent the night there and the next morning we heard our power came back on. Once we got back to our heated apartment it was time to un-bury our cars though that wouldn’t last long.

Our parking lot buried in 2+ feet of snow.

Much of the DC metro area was closed including the local Metro subway system making getting to work impossible for us suburbanites. Plus, another winter storm hit us Tuesday night through Wednesday, February 10. The new storm system brought us a fresh foot of snow along with blizzard conditions. The second storm brought our total accumulations for this winter to 54.9″, breaking the previous all-time record of 54.5″ set in the winter of 1898-99.  We stayed inside most of the time and our power held up the whole way through this time.

My leg in a knee-high snow drift after the two storms.

Now it is Thursday night and the cars have been dug out again, the streets are somewhat plowed and the Metro is running. It looks like we will all go back to work tomorrow, just in time for the 3-day holiday weekend. Oh and the forecast for Monday, February 15… chance of snow.

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Jan 28 2010

Reporting Live From The Newseum

by posted in Trips

This past weekend Russell and I went to the Newseum in Washington, D.C. He has been wanting to visit for a while, probably because he wanted to check out all of the USNews & World Report mentions. With a great tip from our friend Pammy of 1/2 price tickets in the month of January we set aside time from wedding planning and hopped on the metro to check out what the Newseum had to offer.

We enjoyed the many interactive and compelling exhibits the Newseum had to offer. Some of the top sections that we enjoyed were:

  • Athlete: photos from legendary sports photographer Walter Iooss
  • The largest glass elevators that take you to the top floor where they have a great view of the US Capitol and the Pennsylvania Avenue Terrace
  • News History Room where they had over 500 years of newspapers in glass drawers
  • The Internet, TV and Radio Exhibit
  • Today’s Front Page Gallery, where they have more than 80 newspapers from across the U.S. and around the World

Russell and I are out on the Pennsylvania Avenue Terrace with a great view of the U.S. Capitol in the background.

I was so amused by these artifacts at the Newseum!

The last thing we did at the museum (except check out the gift shop which is always a highlight) was go to the Interactive Newsroom and I actually had a chance to read a teleprompter and be a television reporter. If you ever have a chance to go to the Newseum, I highly recommend it. When you go you can choose from 6-8 different backdrops ranging in topics from sports, weather and even landing on the moon. I chose a prompt that was about the latest exhibits going on at the Newseum; I felt it was appropriate so I could remember the day. Russell wanted me to give a special shout out at the end, so take a look and see how I did.

Russell took a picture of me in action.

And with that this is Kristina, signing off!

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Dec 19 2009

A Winter Wallop Adventure

by posted in Events, Trips

This weekend Kristina and I traveled with her folks down to south-western Virginia for her cousins wedding. We left early Friday morning and it took about 6 hours to get there from the DC area. Our drive was complete just before the snow started falling as we pulled up to our hotel in Pounding Mill, Virginia. What made this trip out of the ordinary is the fact that the largest winter storm of the decade was making its way towards us.

The wedding was supposed to start at 6 but the snow had been coming down all afternoon making for some slick conditions. The snow might have changed some plans, but it didn’t stop everyone for having a good time. Lindsay and her now-husband Luke went ahead with the ceremony. The ceremony was beautiful and the couple even managed to get some pictures together outside in the snow. Of course this was the end of the night and the snow was a good 6 inches deep.

Linday and Luke kissing in the snow on their wedding day.

Luke and Lindsay kiss in the snow on their wedding day.

The next morning we took in the view from the hotel room and started our voyage back home.

The snowy landscape view out of our hotel room in Pounding Mill, Virginia.

We didn’t get too far as the roads were still rough as the storm progressed northward to Maryland. Interstate 81 was backed up for miles and we passed dozens of abandoned cars; some of which were in the middle of the road. After being on the road from 9:30am to shortly before 5pm, we had gone a whopping 121 miles. We pulled off in Salem, Virginia, at a hotel for the night where I’m writing this thanks to the free wifi. Its back on the road tomorrow to complete the rest of our journey. I hear there is 21 inches of snow waiting at home in Glenmont!

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Nov 30 2009

Thanksgiving 2009

by posted in Events

The 4-year tradition of spending Thanksgiving at my parent’s house lives on. Every year Russell, his parents and other family members come over and spend thanksgiving at my parent’s house. My mom doesn’t mind as she loves to cook and I help her out as much as I can. Russell helps by eating!

Mr. Naude cooking vegetables out on the grill.

My dad is finishing up bbq-ing some vegetables.

Overhead view of all the Thanksgiving grub.

Russell and his mom were the first to dig in.  We enjoyed turkey, spare ribs, marinated bison, egg rolls, cole slaw, corn bread, homemade corn tortillas, potato salad, veggies and cranberry sauce. Yum!

A box full of leftovers.

And everyone got their fare share of leftovers to take home and enjoy for the following week. It was a great Thanksgiving and I can’t wait until next year.

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Oct 14 2009

An Afternoon At The Maryland Renaissance Festival

by posted in Trips

Kristina and I took a trip back in time when we visited the Maryland Renaissance Festival this past weekend. There were many sights and sounds to take in from the throngs of eager guests decked out in 15th century wear, to the numerous shops selling all kinds of hand made crafts.  The festival was littered with performers involved in plays, musical groups, and even a jousting match.

This jester was a hoot doing visual gags with his fingers.
Bugling Jester at the Maryland Renaissance Festival

We saw a glass blowing demonstration and these were some of the finished products hanging outside of his shop.
Hanging Glassware at the Maryland Renaissance Festival

The jousting match was the most exciting part of the event. One of the knights even fell off his horse during one of the routines.
Galloping Jousting Knight

This queen was one of the many different costumes we saw people wearing throughout the day.
Rennaissance Queen at the Maryland Renaissance Festival

The longest line at the Maryland Renaissance Festival was for the ATM though some shops accepted credit cards.
Lady Visa Sir Mastercard

Kristina sure had a fun time! I did too I just couldn’t get a picture of myself enjoying everything.
Kristina Smiling at the Maryland Renaissance Festival

I can’t believe how far some people get into the renaissance time period but it is fun to experience a bit of history for yourself. And we didn’t have to worry about fighting a dragon and crossing a moat to get back home!

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