As you know my December started with me taking the test to receive my first degree black belt, which I actually received at the show. In between testing and receiving the belt, I took a quick 3-day trip to Washington, DC because Little Helen received an invitation to a Holiday Reception at the White House. Unlike the Holiday Tours that are offered, this is an invitation only event and though there were several hundred people, it is still pretty exclusive. All the rooms in the East Wing of the White House are actually open and available to walk through and take photos. This trip will definitely go down as one of the most exciting things I've ever done in my life!
I spent the weekend after Thanksgiving looking around for something to wear and just as I was about to give up, I hit the jackpot and found a beautiful dress that was a pinkish-beige color. I wanted something classy looking but not sparkly as I was trying to go between holiday and business with my look. Besides, I wanted to accessorize with sparkles, which I pulled off with my pocketbook, shoes and jewelry. I also found out that if you try hard enough, it is possible to find the perfect undergarments for a dress like this that will make you look smooth without squeezing the life out of you. That is a whole other blog though.
The day of the event arrived and Little Helen had to go to work, leaving me alone to putter and get dressed at my leisure which was quite lovely. I was able to really take time with my hair and makeup and accessories and I'm not gonna lie, by the time I left to go to the reception, I felt not only White House worthy but like a million bucks. Don't you just love it when that happens?
I took the metro into DC and met up with Little Helen and we went to the appointed gate and got in line for the security checks. Ultimately we ended up going through four (and this was after providing personal information for a pre-clearance!), including being sniffed by dogs and metal detection, which my jewelry promptly set off, leading to being wanded. Worth every minute it took.
Little Helen said as soon as the saw the amount of secret service and the dogs she knew that the Obamas would be making an appearance, which was confirmed fairly quickly once we were inside. So right away, we had to make a choice to either eat some food and tour and view all the rooms or immediately go to the area where the Obamas would be so that we had the chance to shake their hands. It was not much of a decision for me: I wanted to fully experience being in the White House and I knew I would still see the Obamas and hear them speak so off we went to tour and get food!
It was an amazing, dream-like experience. There was so much to see it was like sensory overload. I realized once I looked at the photos I'd taken that I'd missed so much and those things will just have to remain in my memories.
To have had the privilege of visiting the White House during such an exclusive reception and then to have the opportunity to be in the presence of our standing President is almost indescribable. So, I'll let the photos do the talking. Because there are so many photos, I didn't want to download them here as I wanted to share them all. So please, click on the link under this photo to get to the album and join me on the tour and be a part of my December to remember!
|Joy to All Holidays at the White House 2012|
P.S. Make sure if you set the slideshow option, you show the captions as they give the details and tell our story.