Monday, January 09, 2012

Christmas in Washington, D.C.

Whenever my kids have had to do school assignments looking at our family culture and tradition, we are sort of left out in the cold. We're American. We don't really have any deep ethnic or cultural roots. From what I can tell that's common in the South, whereas in New England some people were more tied in to their Italian or German or Scandinavian roots (I'd love to know if this is your perspective as well).

When it comes to traditions, ours are fairly traditional. We invite people over for Thanksgiving, and as I've thought back on on the years that we hosted, we often welcome a wide variety of friends and family. We eat traditional dishes unique to our own family. That's tradition, right?

Christmas again involves get togethers with family and specific gift-exchanging traditions. But one thing that I always remind my children of is the tradition of seeing the decorations in Washington D.C.'s President's Park. Since my husband's family lives there, and we spend practically every Christmas there, it's something that we've seen every year.

There are many families who visit there each year. There are many people who visit from different states and countries. But our tradition is all our own. For one thing, though we plan the evening we're going to visit well in advance of a weather forecast, it is often the coldest night of our entire stay. This year, the temperatures were quite mild for December, but the night we went? Cold and in the 40's. And after viewing the big tree and the state tree and watching the trains for a while, there's usually ice cream.  You really can't go wrong with a traditional night out that involves ice cream, can you?

Washington, D.C. is a pretty magical place. Anytime you drive in and see all the monuments lit up it almost takes your breath away, but Christmas is an especially awe-inspiring time.


If you like Washington, D.C. as a setting, be sure you click over to 5 Minutes for Books and enter to win a copy of the unique collection of stories Cherry Blossom Capers.

Also, I have to say that I am very irritated with Blogger at the moment. I've spent many hours trying to upload pictures (even downsizing them before I do so), and something is happening where they aren't coming through (the one above is nothing compared to the gobbledygook I've gotten). It reminds me of the old days when Blogger used to take ages when traffic was high, and since I'm trying to blog better -- which I actually did in the old days -- maybe it's okay to tap into that frustration. Since it's been almost 2 weeks since we returned from this trip, it was time to post regardless.


morninglight mama said...

You know, we literally live 12 miles or so up the road from this beauty, but we haven't done Christmas in DC in years, sadly. I like seeing your pics, though!

Martha said...

Your traditions are your own. It does not matter if they are something you have done one year or a hundred. Remember, you only have to do something twice to make a tradition. I also so love the picture of you and Terry! That is what I remember of you two!

Katrina @ Callapidder Days said...

Beautiful pictures! And I whole-heartedly approve of any and all traditions involving ice cream. :) Love the pic of you and Terry!