I figured before I posted about our insane weekend in NYC I should put up my stuff from the weekend before.  Lauren was so nice to come visit us and take our minds off the omnipresent craziness of our international move.   The weekend was a bit of a whirlwind, but we really enjoyed the company.  Lauren had been to DC before and let me take her to some less mainstream places I'd been wanting to visit.  And, since Lauren is a frequent traveler too, she even introduced me to a bar I wish I'd found before, because I know both my sisters would have loved it.

Friday night after a scrumptious dinner at Ray's Hell Burger (its sister restaurant, or maybe I should say brother, Ray's the Steaks, is a really swanky restaurant in town.  They take all the unused tenderloin and ground it into burgers.  Yum.), Lauren and I dropped Joey off (it was past his bedtime) and headed to the W Hotel right next to the White House.
Leaving the bar Friday night
She'd read about the bar on the roof, called POV, and its fabulous view of the White House and the Washington Monument.  Sure enough, we were not disappointed.  We even managed to find a table!  In addition to the fabulous conversation we were also entertained by a fight between several male patrons.  Lauren and I were more appalled by their throwing around $15 drinks than punches.

Saturday we went over to President Woodrow Wilson's house and took a very thorough tour.  The docent was very nice and exceptionally informed.  President Wilson's second wife, Edith, maintained almost everything original from the house, so it was really neat to see.  I especially loved the old, concert grand Steinway piano - I wish I'd played in the last few years so I could have played something on that when the docent asked.

After the Woodrow Wilson house we headed over to the Society of the Cincinnati Anderson House.  It was built in 1905 for something absurd like $7 million dollars and wow, was it incredible.  Before our tour we were lucky enough to stumble upon a free concert in the grand hall of the home; a famous Army opera singer (who earned Joey's respect upon reading in the program that he'd sung at Ronald Reagan's funeral) accompanied by a very talented pianist regaled us with Italian love songs and "Oh, Holy Night."

Just gorgeous - Joey said he thought it was prettier than the Sistene Chapel.
The fabulous stairwell with custom-made tapestry by Dega.
French drawing room - the English drawing room had the same beautiful gilt.
This is where the concert took place.  These pictures don't even being to do the Anderson House justice.
Saturday night we headed over to the Spy Museum for their "Spy at Night" interactive spy experience, which though exceptionally hokey, was pretty fun too.  Then we headed over to Potenza for a fabulous Italian dinner.  Sunday was pretty low-key, with a delicious lunch at 2 Amys' Pizza and just some driving around town, checking out the sites but staying warm in the car at the same time.  We'd planned to visit the Portrait Gallery but made the unfortunate assumption that we'd be able to find a parking space.  By the time we drove around the block four times and decided the closest parking spot would be at home, it was too late to drive home, walk to the gallery, peruse the collection, walk home and get Lauren to the airport in time.  We actually found a parking spot as soon as we got to the Portrait Gallery; there were about fifty cars, all parked in the back-in, angle parking and there was spot open.  Sweet!  So we backed the car in and right as Joey went to shut off the ignition a man came over to the car.  He pointed to the sign which said in the most confusing manner that back-in, angle parking ended at 2 pm only on Sundays and said if we found a different parking spot we'd be fifty dollars richer.  He said he comes down every Sunday at 1:45 to try and help people out.  Sure enough, as we drove around the block looking for a space to parallel park the car, we saw the meter maid back-in, angle park her car and then proceed to ticket every car parked the same way.  Nice.