Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Saint George . . .

Last weekend we took advantage of the holiday and made our way south to sunny skies, warmer weather, and family that we don't see nearly enough. On Saturday we told Ainslie that we were going to see "Papa" and she was so excited that she didn't sleep at all on the drive down. Every time we suggested a nap, she told us "Papa" and kept on kicking . . . When we got there we were all excited to see family, but Ainslie was especially excited to see Grandpa, Grandma, and Uncle Seth (she was excited to see Aunt Jessie too, but a busy work schedule kept Jessie away from the camera).While we were there Seth was nice enough to teach us how to play Rock Band on the Xbox. We were bad, really bad. Josh only got 1% better than Ainslie did on the drums. Bad as we were, the game is pretty addictive. Josh has always been a bit of a rockstar at heart, so he got a little intense playing . . .

On the way home we got to see Jed and Amanda's house in Cedar City and had some great lunch with everyone there. We also made a stop in Payson for Heather's birthday party. It was a great weekend with lots of family.

DC Wrap Up . . .

Josh's competition in DC went great. The BYU teams were very successful. Both teams advanced to the semifinals and since they were the only two teams left representing the prosecution, one of them was guaranteed a spot in the final round. Josh's team didn't get that spot, but the other BYU team ended up winning first place. The competition had 24 teams participating from many prestigious law schools. Everyone on the BYU team was excited about their success in the competition, and it was great to have their hard work pay off.
Both teams and the judges from the final round (BYU on the left): With all of their winning in the competition, the team didn't end up with a ton of time for sightseeing, but they did manage to get out some. It stayed cold for the first few days, and it was absolutely freezing when Josh went to see the capitol and the Supreme Court.

As you might imagine, a group of law students was excited spend some time inside of the Supreme Court. They also got to spend some time admiring the Library of Congress.

Josh also got to spend a little bit of time in the American History Smithsonian Museum where he got to see a great exhibit on President Lincoln (that's the President's top hat). Though not as historically significant, he also got to see the painting of Stephen Colbert that hangs near the bathrooms on the fifth floor.

Speaking of Colbert, the group also dropped by the offices of Rep. Jason Chaffetz, who was featured on the Report a little while back. Josh was surprised with how easy it was to find the representative's office and how friendly the members of his staff were. The group got a tour of the capital building with one of the interns. They ventured into the tunnels under the capitol and got to see some of the cooler things in the capitol building.

One of Josh's favorites from the last trip to DC was the old Supreme Court room in the capitol. He snapped a couple pictures of the dark, windowless courtroom this time.

Trying to make sure they saw the DC essentials, the group also swung by the National Archives to see the copies of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and Bill of Rights. It's pretty amazing to think of how much these documents have influenced in the last 200 years.

While there wasn't much time during the day, Josh also braved the cold a few times to get some pictures of the monuments at night.

On Sunday, the group slipped into the first part of church where the Hyatt's attend, and that afternoon Josh got to go back for a little visit with everyone.

That day was Emma's birthday, so it was lots of fun to be there. But Josh is pretty sure it's always a party at the Hyatt house . . .

On the last day, Josh got to visit the branch of the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum that is located out by the Dulles airport. It was awesome . . .

As much fun as the trip was, the best part was coming home. Six days is a pretty long time to be away . . .

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

It's cold in DC . . .

This morning Josh headed off to Fairfax, Virginia to compete with 5 other BYU law students in the John C. Costello National Criminal Law Trial Advocacy Competition. The team has been working hard to prepare for the competition, and they're looking forward to the start of competition tomorrow evening.


Last weekend we took a little time on Saturday afternoon to get out of the house/library and watched BYU beat Wyoming at the Marriott Center. Tickets were only a dollar and our seats were pretty good. It was fun to get out and do something, and Ainslie had fun cheering for the Cougars. She's a champ when it gets to the "ra ra ra" part of the fight song.

One of the funnest parts of going to sporting events like this is eating the crazy food. Josh tackled the BYU treat, the Brat tail. Legend has it that Josh's former hometeaching companion is the mastermind behind combining a maple bar and a bratwurst. A little different, pretty tasty.

Ainslie opted for the more traditional tootsie pop and whatever other candy she was able to get from the nice lady who was sitting behind us (mostly licorice and sour patch kids).

It was great to spend a little family time together before Josh heads out to DC this week. We even managed to get a a family picture before we left.

It may not be our best, but it turned out better than this one.