Friday, July 25, 2014

A Colonial Christmas

Happy Christmas in July! Yes, I just realized the last time I posted was before the holidays. I wish I could blame my lack of posting on business, but really I have no excuse other than a lack of motivation. What started out as a travel blog/journal seven years ago, has now morphed into an avenue to document our family happenings. With social media growing in so many ways, I feel less and less motivated to keep the blog alive, other than for posterity purposes. My goal is to at least document through Conan's first year and after that, we'll see what occurs.  

During our time in Germany, the blog was titled "Newlyweds in Germany" with a domain of "thecaptainandfrauclough." Though the domain has remained the same, the name changed to "Cloughs in Clogs" when we moved to the Netherlands. It appears we are in desperate need of another name to reflect our new lives in the States, but a part of me is not ready to let go of this European-born outlet I so relied on to share my travel experiences and photos with family. It's been a year since our return to the States, and yet my heart still aches every day for my former home and partly, my former self. I find myself often looking back at my previous postings, reminiscing about the incredible adventures we've had over the years abroad. But now, I am looking back a mere six months past to the start of our wonderful Colonial Christmas trip to Virginia and North Carolina!

We spent our first few days at Jon's parents house in Northern VA and enjoyed going to downtown DC on two separate occasions. We spent an afternoon exploring the Air and Space Museum, Botanical Garden, views from the Old Postal Office Tower, a holiday market, and ended the evening viewing the national tree. For being late December, the weather was extremely mild and perfect for walking around the city and enjoying the many sites.

Air and Space Museum with Grandma and Grandaddy

Conan's (at 7 months) first visit to the Mall

Conan with Grandma

The Capitol at Christmas

Botanical Garden with Grandma and Grandad

View of Washington monument from Old Post Office Tower

View of Capitol from Old Post Office Tower

At the top of the tower

The National Tree

The National Tree

The National Tree and White House

The following morning, we returned downtown for a 'Dave Clough Monuments Tour.' After living on and off here for 35+ years, he's had quite his share of visitors and has gotten well-versed in the history of all the monuments. The only thing keeping him from doing this as a side-job is the speed with which he walks! The average person wouldn't be able to keep up! Luckily for me, I love a good cardio workout. We began at the Jefferson monument and continued around the lake to the impressive World War II monument and beyond. We ended at the Martin Luther King monument, which was unlike any other. I'm still not decided whether I like it or not, but it's definitely thought-provoking. 

Jefferson Monument

World War II Monument

Lincoln Monument

In addition to getting our history lessons in, we managed to attend a Christmas Party with lots of Jon's high school buddies at our friends' Tim and Becky's house. Unfortunately we have no pics from this occasion, but had so much fun hanging out with them and I always enjoy seeing Jon revert back to his high school self when around this dynamic group. 

I've always wanted to visit Colonial Williamsburg and have heard that at Christmas-time it is especially magnificent. So, on our way to North Carolina, David and Beckie were kind enough to take us on a short detour to spend a couple hours there one evening. We arrived just in time to see the Illumination of Historic Buildings, complete with music from fifes and drums to accompany the lighting of torches around the Governor's Palace Square.

It was such a beautiful place and though I'm sure it would have been amazing to see in the daytime, it was truly magical to see the historic inns, taverns and other buildings at night lit only with candles in windows and torches in the street. Though I hope to visit again when we have more time to tour the various buildings, I will always cherish this memorable night in Colonial Williamsburg!

Illumination Festivities

Illumination Festivities

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