Franciscan Monastery Sale

On Saturday the Franciscan Monastery near Centro Maria had their annual plant and herb sale. I went to check it out with Margie, Sarah, and Anna.

They had tons of plants for sale!

Margie, Sarah, and Anna sniffing a flower.

The monastery was really beautiful. They had a prayer written in a bunch of different languages, including Japanese!

I can read the parts of it that aren't kanji!

The monks also had some of their famous honey for sale. They have beehives at the monastery, and the honey they make is very popular. I was really excited to buy some!I made sure that we got there right when it was suppose to open, and an hour after we got there the honey was all sold out. Luckily I was able to buy it before they ran out!

On the way to the car we saw a woman with five Yorkshire terriers. They were so cute on their leashes! We of course had to stop for some pets.

I want to go back to the monastery again and take a tour. Apparently they have a catacombs with actual bodies!

Go to my Flickr page to see more pictures of the monastery!

Lantern-lit Cherry Blossom Tour

When looking at the list of the cherry blossom events I was immediately drawn to something described as a “Ranger-guided Lantern-lit Cherry Blossom Walk.” I wrangled four friends and we headed down to the Washington Monument to meet up with our ranger guide.

Michelle, Sarah, Lee, and Anna at the Stone Lodge

We met our ranger, Jane, and she started to fill us in on the oldest cherry trees still living.

She was pretty long-winded.

We walked around the tidal basin learning about Japan’s gift of cherry blossoms. We saw the lantern that Japan gave later, which is lit each year during a special ceremony. The lantern has a bunch of symbols carved into it, and the gift itself is symbolic. Jane went into a lot of detail, but I can’t really remember it. 🙂

Next we saw a pagoda that Japan gave us as well.

We walked halfway around the tidal basin with Jane, and it took us two hours. Then Sarah, Anna, Lee and I walked the other half back to the car in twenty minutes. It was a good night, although I was disappointed that the “lantern” was a flashlight!

What’s been up while the blog’s been boring!

My computer’s screen died, so I had to send it off to Apple and I’ve finally got it back! While I was laptop-less I did some pretty cool stuff. First, I went to some of the National Cherry Blossom Festival events. The National Cherry Blossom Festival runs for two weeks in DC, and during that time the Tidal Basin Cherry Blossoms are at their peak bloom. There are a bunch of fun events to go to – concerts, exhibits, a parade. The first event I went to was the fireworks display on the Southeast Waterfront. There were a bunch of people there dancing to music and enjoying the good weather. I took a bunch of pictures of the fireworks, and I think they turned out pretty good!

Next I went to visit the Tidal Basin to see the famous cherry blossoms in person. It was a warm, sunny day, and about a billion people had the same idea as me. The blossoms were pretty, but I missed the peak bloom by about three days.

The final event I participated in was the Cherry Blossom Ten-Miler. I didn’t run it, but I volunteered at the merch table during the expo. Volunteers get a guaranteed entry for the next year’s race, which is great because the race is so popular that they need to use a lottery selection process. The expo was pretty exciting. I thought my volunteer slot started at six, so I got up very very early and drove downtown. Once I got there I found out my slot didn’t start until nine. So I had three hours to kill, and I ended up walking in to help out about forty-five minutes early. Helping out was fun. I got a sweet volunteer t-shirt out of the deal, so it was a total win!

The Ten-Miler Expo

Check out my Flickr page to see a ton more photos of cherry blossoms, fireworks, monuments, Great Falls MD, and a lot of flowers from around DC.

Round House!

The other day while driving through my neighborhood I found the most delightful house. It’s painted yellow, and it’s totally round! It is so adorable! When I went to get ice cream with a couple friends from Centro Maria I insisted that we take a detour to see the house on foot so I could take a great picture to share with you. You’re welcome, world!

Booooo in my room. Where’s the ac?

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Dear Centro Maria,
Seriously, this is ridiculous.
Love always,
Lauren