DC/NoVA Adventures ~ Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial

On September 17th, 2020, the memorial dedicated to Dwight D. Eisenhower was dedicated in Washington, DC. Located within a short walking distance of the Capitol Building in DC, the memorial is designed by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry. Gehry is also the architect behind such well-known buildings as the Guggenheim Building in Spain, Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, and the Louis Vuitton Foundation in Paris. The memorial sits on a 4-acre park and includes two large pillars, several statues, and quotes from Eisenhower. Not only does it depict scenes from his Presidency, but it also pays important attention to his childhood and the importance of Abilene, Kansas, as well as paying homage to his military service. Several artists contributed to the memorial, including Nicholas Waite Benson who was the inscription artist. Benson has also inscribed the WWII, Roosevelt, and Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorials. The large stainless steel tapestry depicts the beaches of Normandy, which connect Eisenhower’s service and the peace he maintained during the President. The two large pillars on either side of the memorial are the height of the cliffs of Normandy that American soldiers had to climb that day.

 

 

 

 

 

Who was Eisenhower?

I consider Eisenhower to be an interesting sort of President. While I wouldn’t consider him as unknown as say Rutherford B. Hayes or a Chester Arthur, but I WOULD consider him to be unassuming. What exactly did he do? The site location of the memorial as a whole was chosen carefully to connect parts of DC politics that are connected to Eisenhower. It is surrounded by the Department of Education, Department of Health and Human Services, Air and Space, Voice of America, and the Federal Aviation Administration. President Eisenhower was the first president to direct federal aid to education, signed legislation to the department that preceded the Dept of Health and Human Services, lead the charge in creating the Air Force, creating the Air Force Academy, and helped create the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The list goes on and on of the small of significant parts of history that Eisenhower had an impact on.

A behind-the-scenes impact

The impact of Eisenhower rings loudly today as we think about the quiet steps that Eisenhower took to impact positive change, presiding over eight years of peace and prosperity in the United States. He sent troops down south to help enforce desegregation, pushed for the desegregation of Washington DC, and completed the desegregation of the military that had begun before his election. He also signed the Civil Rights Act of 1957. And despite all the drama surrounding the design and creation of the memorial I love its simplicity and symbolism and hope that that shines through and inspires visitors to learn more about him.

 

See more DC/NoVA Adventures!!

American History Museum

National Inventors Hall of Fame

Eisenhower Memorial Pinterest

National Inventors Hall of Fame

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Personalized Gifts for the Women You Love {Halloween Discount Code}

My goal in life is to find some of the best gifts that I can. It’s my love language. The smile on someones’ face gives me so much joy and if it’s a secret gift that’s even better.  And while the idea of personalized jewelry might seem weird and outdated at first, I haven’t gotten this many compliments on jewelry since I got my mini-states necklace.  Who knew I really missed out on the whole Carrie Bradshaw name necklace trend. I didn’t realize how much I LOVED it!

 

I was really excited to partner with JesseMade Jewelry to check out some great personalized jewelry options for Christmas gifts. What important for me to share is affordability and quality. Clearly when we think of affordability, quality isn’t the first thing that jumps to our mind. I didn’t know what to expect and I can tell you I was pleasantly surprised. Before I share anything with you I want to make sure that I establish the quality, and lucky for you your girl here has ridiculously sensitive skin. I’ve been wearing the necklace to sleep in and to shower in and haven’t had any issues. Didn’t try the pool or the beach yet, but I don’t generally like to wear any of the jewelry during any of those things activities.

Time to share 

 

 

One of the things that I loved about the bracelet is how easy it was to get on and off. The unique clasp really made it simple and I didn’t have to struggle to get it on. And the unique Oval shape of the bracelet makes it so the bracelet sits so nicely and doesn’t constantly flip around on your wrist. Very cool!

 

These are sweet gifts from kiddos to their mamas, boyfriends to their girlfriends, and I’ve even considered these as gifts to my mom and sister for Christmas. You can get rings, anklets, and all sorts of bracelets and necklaces that fit your unique style. Their name necklaces come in several different fonts and you can choose between silver, gold, or rose gold coloring. There truly is something for everyone!

As a side note, they also sometimes have super cute home decor items and I may or may not have purchased some Halloween stuff! I can’t help it! Look how cute this is!! All their Halloween stuff is on sale and the extra discount code applies if you want to purchase some jewelry as well! Its an excellent deal, so jump on over to JesseMade and snag your stuff today!

jessemade5

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Favorite Quarantine Products

Its been forever since I’ve done a favorites blog post, but I have some pretty awesome things to share with you from the last couple of months of quarantine. Nothing like filling endless hours of time at home with some serious product research!

Skincare – If you’ve been around awhile you know that I am more apt to shell out the dough for skincare products. I’ve always believed in taking care of your skin, and with a little bit of good genetics, you’ll get far in life. From as long ago as I can remember my mom stressed this aspect, from her days at Mary Kay and beyond. I have a day and a night cream I love and use religiously, but that same company doesn’t have all the other extra products I like to use, which isn’t much. Two products I have added to my regiment, and one I re-ordered after getting it in my FabFitFun box. The Skin&Co Face Toner is my favorite and I also really love the Radiant Dew which sets make-up, restores the pH balance in your skin and tightens up pores. Its a way steeper $35. It smells good and makes my skin feel awesome. And even though it is $27, it lasts forever AND its cruelty-free, they love organic farming and its free of all that paraben junk. As a side note, if you would like to try FabFitFun you can either try a starter box {just message me and I’ll get that FREE box sent out} or get $10 off your first full-size box!

Hair Care –  I recently shared Finesse shampoo on my Instagram and got a ton of good feedback, and comments from other users. I’ve been working really hard at taking care of my hair since I began to see stress-related hairless over the last three years. There was a lot that happened and it caused a lot of stress with negative consequences on my body in several ways. Never discount what stress can do to your body – but that’s for another blog post. So I did my research and was actually gifted shampoo and conditioner that was part of the Restore+strength collection. They have a moisturizing, normal hair, and color-treated hair option. I noticed increased softness and healthiness from my hair and I’ve been using it for a while. I would 100% recommend it to those looking for an affordable option for healthy hair and softness. Go check out my Instagram post about it to see what a few others are saying as well.

 

However, there was more I needed to do to help grow my hair, so I did more research. I read reviews, read magazine lists for best hair growth shampoos, and finally settled on one that was a midpoint price range, I could get on Amazon and had moderately good reviews. I would say this shampoo is worth a try. I’m a terrible blogger, and probably a bit self-conscious about what I perceived as huge empty spots on my head that I happened to hide well. It has very specific directions, and I would listen to them. I believe it is working, and it isn’t too much of a wallet buster that it wouldn’t be worth a try for you. Purebiology is right around $28 for a 8oz bottle. I know..its a lot, but comparatively speaking its closer to a steal. A shampoo and conditioner with biotin, Keratin, vitamin B and what is the more important part for hair regrowth (which I learned after all my research) DhT blockers. I also use Navy HairCare scalp scrub, and I’m doing a little bit more research and going to add a scalp scrubber because I am also prone to a very dry scalp…all my life. I will keep you updated on my hair journey!

Billie Razors – I feel like I’m the last person to jump on the Billie train, but I couldn’t be happier. I’ve been using Billie for about a month and its not like any razor I’ve used before. Its crazy and I really love it for my sensitive skin. This will also be Ami’s first Razor, no question. Delivery of my blades right when I need them is a huge selling point. I don’t have to store a bunch, forget where I stored them and then go buy any! Plus, the awesome set up for clipping it to my shower wall is an added bonus. Super affordable, ergonomic handle and their products are either verified or certified green on the Environmental Working Group list, which basically means that’s good for you! Plus, they believe in fighting that pink tax! Why should we pay more for razors? Quit overpaying for Razors! Use my link to sign up and then get your own link to share more about Billie razors and fight the pink tax!

 

Detangler – If you have a daughter with hair that gets tangled easy (or maybe you do) you know the value of a detangler. I have searched high and low, we’ve tried tons of conditioners, leave-in sprays, expensive and cheap and we have a new favorite. Although I will say that the type of brush you use is such important in the detangling process. But, we are here to talk about leave-in sprays. We want one that will do the job and not leave everyone’s hair feeling greasy…or worse yet, not even do its job. This spray seems to be daughter-approved. Infusium Leave-In has avocado and olive oil, it keeps hair feeling soft and healthy – doing its job over time and not just for the ten minutes you spend brushing your kid’s hair. its a relatively affordable option, and believe me I’ve tried not affordable ones too. I feel like we’ll always be searching for that amazing leave-in spray and it will always be a thing as she learns to navigate having real hair that is thick and needs washing and conditioner and having to do that herself. The price of wanting your hair long is deep ya’ll!

Nails – I, like so many, made the switch to do it yourself nails. While I did often paint my nails at home I just used regular polish and they would inevitably fall apart, chip, squish, and get marks on it. So I made the switch over to gel and I’ve never looked back. Yes, there was a learning curve, yes there are a lot of supplies, but so worth it. As I realized I needed stuff and learned what to do I bought more stuff. You can find everything in my Amazon Storefront, but these are some of my favorites.

Beetles Gel Polish is my favorite of the two different kinds I own. However, I use Makartt top and bottom coat that I got in my original session. I’m going to be totally honest and tell you it took about five times to get the hang of it and get a polish that does chip or peel off. There’s definitely a talent to you that I will never fully accomplish without going to school or working in a nail salon for years. However, I am pretty impressed with myself. Unless you are super talented (which I am not) you’re going to need some accessories in your arsenal.

Besides the UV light, I also use latex nail art paint that I put around the edges. This is super important to avoid peeling later, and it’s crazy how well it works. The set that it comes with has the cuticle stick thing (yes, that’s the technical term) and oil that I absolutely love. I totally believe that with practice you get a pretty decent at-home gel manicure…AND it doesn’t rip of up nails when I take it off. That’s win guys.

what are some of your favorite quarantine finds?

 

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All The Shows You Should Be Watching Right Now

Quarantine has made the art of binge-watching a little more….well, we do it a little more often than we used to. We now can all share the judgment when Netflix asks, “Are you still watching?” Yes Netflix, I am!!! We are quickly running through all the ‘new” binge-worthing shows like Tiger King, and catching up on old favorites from the beginning, like Friends. But now its time to dig deep in the streaming lists and find some new and long-forgotten shows to add spice and variety to our ‘Quarantine and Chill’ time. I’ve also included some of my favorite True Crime and Documentaries.

As a self-proclaimed expert in pop-culture, I’ve put together some lists with a lot of names you might not recognize at all; and maybe a few you vaguely remember. I hope to surprise some of you and spark some memories for the rest.

Hulu Binge 1                                                        

This list should help you make it through….like next week right?

What shows are on your Binge List?

 

Binge Watching Shows

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Education Resources for At Home Learning

I know that you might be feeling overwhelmed, especially with the prospect of homeschooling your children. However, I don’t think that’s the correct perspective we need to have right now. Homeschooling is a lot of work, and it requires a certain level of organization and prep work. Kids are dealing with suddenly not being in school, in the middle of the year, and not going back! They are hanging in a weird limbo and this isn’t something our modern society has ever faced. So much of school today is crowd control and meeting a lot of criteria that homeschooling kids just don’t have to deal with. As someone who was homeschooled, I can attest to this. There isn’t a whole classroom of kids to deal with, behavior issues, pulling children for evaluations or to give individual assistance to and all the different factors that make up a regular school day.

I believe that we should be looking at this like an “Avoid the Summer Slide” type of situation. As someone who has homeschooled a child for a year, been homeschooled and someone who works in the schools, I stand by this. Even if you were to homeschool your children you wouldn’t be doing it for the same amount of time as a regular public or private school day. So, please, take a deep breath, figure out what works out for your children and do your best to help them avoid a slide before September, and take it one day at a time.

I am sharing below some great resources and things that I am using personally. If your children are playing an instrument keep that up. We have incorporated that into our schedules, along with drawing and art YouTube series or just free-crafting time. Plenty of outside time, playing games to encourage critical thinking and fun and asking the kids what they want to learn. There are so many fun science experiments online and you can cook and bake with the kids as well.

In short, or long apparently, I’m thinking of you guys out there!

Math Resources

IXL.com – available for all grades

Dreambox.com

Prodigy – Download the app (Premium is available, but we love the free version)

Math Drills

K5Learning

Reading Resources

RazKids from AtoZlearning.com – app and online

Multi-subject Resources

Mr. Nussbaum – grades 1-6 multi-subject resources. Subjects from Colonial America to Birds of Prey. Mr. Nussbaum is offering full access at 80% off through March with the code “keepeducating”.

Teachers Pay Teachers – small fees

ABC Mouse – we no longer use it, but for pre-k – first grade ABC Mouse is wonderful. We used it for all three of our children

Adventure Academy – made by ABC Mouse for ages 8-13 (first month free!!)

Language Arts

Writing anything is really what kids need right now! I own cursive booklets that I have the kids do every once in a while, just to mix it up. These are summer activities that I do, that I pulled out for now. For Phillip, because he loves worksheets, I pulled out his Grade 2 Language Arts Summer workbook for him to do as well. It works through grade-appropriate tasks, working on sentence structure and adding more sight words to his vocabulary.

Writing Prompts (elementary through high school) – JournalBuddies.com

Science

Breakout EDU – Science mini online escape rooms with a science twist. You just have to hunt for free ones!

available all grade levels

YouTube

art classes – art hub for kids, cartooning for kids, draw so cute and babble dabble do

math help – Bro and Sis Math Club, Math Antics, Khan Academy

Character Building

CBS Evening Series “On the Road” has developed a Kindness 101 series and it is the most amazing thing right now. We sit down as a family and watch. It airs live on Facebook at 2pm Eastern Time but can be viewed later on YouTube and online. There is even homework provided for the kids. I highly recommend this as a family experience and an uplifting one at that.

Games (Amazon Affiliate)

Trekking the National Parks

Yahtzee

Scrabble

Sequence

Sequence for Kids

FlipIt

Our Favorite Workbooks

Summer Bridge books

Cursive Workbook

Highlights Workbooks – PreK – 2nd

BrainQuest workbooks – older kids

 

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