Category Archives: Easter

The Great Cherry Blossom Hunt of 2015

My mom was here in DC visiting me for about 10 days and it was great to have her here!

She got some genealogy work done at the National Archives and the DAR headquarters, and we went to Mount Vernon, had dinner with a cousin of hers, test drove a car I’m considering for Germany, and went on a hunt for the elusive DC cherry blossom.  Neither of us had been to Mount Vernon, so it was really interesting to check it out, despite it being fairly cold and windy when we visited.

Mom had planned the timing of her visit to coincide with the Cherry Blossom Festival but this year, Mother Nature just wasn’t cooperating.  It’s been colder here than usual this year, so the cherry blossom trees weren’t blooming quite yet.  We did go down to the Tidal Basin area to see what we could see, and one of the volunteers there told us that she’d heard that there were some blooming by the WWI Memorial.  We had a map that showed where the trees were supposed to be located, so we set off to find them.  We wandered for awhile and eventually found about five blooming trees near the DC War Memorial.  Not exactly the same as the whole tidal basin full of them, but still something. 🙂

In other news, German’s continuing to go well and I’ve also continued to whittle away at the things I have to do before I go to Frankfurt.  I applied for my new diplomatic passport, which turned out to be more complicated than I expected, since they’d changed the procedures.  But, after a few e-mails and phone calls, I found the right person who could get me the right form that I needed to submit with my passport application.  I should get it back in another week or two and can then apply for my German visa when I get a little closer to my departure date.

I also put my proposed itinerary in to the system, so eventually I will get my orders back from those.  I couldn’t do that until I was transferred from the Econ Course to the German Department in the system.  Then, of course, I forgot that I needed to update my medical clearance before they could issue my orders, so I had get that updated.  Fortunately, you can renew your medical clearance with a form if you haven’t had any major health issues, and MED updated within a few days.  So, I then re-submitted my proposed itinerary and hopefully my orders will come back in a few weeks.

That’s most of the news here.  Here are a few pictures of the stuff that Mom and I got up to while she was here.






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Filed under Easter, Family, Frankfurt, FSI, Germany, Paperwork, Pictures, Spring, Texas, Vacation, Washington DC

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter, everybody!  Hope everyone has a wonderful Easter.

Good Friday and Easter Monday are holidays here in Ottawa, so the embassy is closed for both of them, which makes for a four-day weekend for me.  The weather has been really nice, so it’s been a nice break, but there’s still a lot of snow laying around and I really wish it would just go away so we could move on with spring and summer weather.

However, as part of the holiday weekend, a lot of stores were closed in Ottawa on Good Friday.  After driving by four very obviously closed grocery stores, I went home and decided that I’d just go shopping on Saturday, even though there were a few things I really wanted on Friday.  However, after awhile, I remembered that the rules were a bit different in Quebec and did a little googling and found grocery stores that were open over there.  Success!  So, I went over to Hull to go grocery shopping and got what I was after. 🙂

That makes two trips to Quebec this week, since I also went to Montreal for the day on Wednesday for a few work meetings.  Montreal was really neat and I’ll have to go back on my own sometime when I can do some sightseeing and not just run from meeting to meeting.

I also took the train for the first time in Canada on my trip to Montreal.  I’ve taken plenty of trains in Europe when I lived in Germany and Belgium, but this was my first time to take a train in North America.  It worked really well and was a lot easier than dealing with parking, driving in an unfamiliar city, etc.

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Filed under Canada, Easter, Holidays, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec, Snow