*The post that follows this introduction was originally posted two years ago April 2011.

Lately, I've been publishing a lot of Cherry Blossom themed posts (May Day gift & Cherry Almond Pound Cake)... Cherry Blossoms will always have a sweet spot in my heart.  Two years ago I tagged along with Mike on a work trip to DC that happened to be during the Cherry Blossom Festival.  We'd just recently moved to the Boston area and were living in a temporary apartment in Cambridge.  It was the beginning of April and spring was still a couple of weeks away in New England.  I was experiencing a whole mix of emotion during our move - excitement, doubt and freedom as we started out on our "life vacation."  The weather was particularly dreary and grey in our new "home" and I was desperate to get out of town... even though we'd just gotten there.

When I arrived in DC, I remember feeling a wave of relief as I saw green grass, leaves on trees and felt the warmth of the sun.  The weather was perfect and the entire Capitol (cherry blossoms included) was in bloom.

As you might recall from that blog post, that day I talked about stopping in Sprinkles for a Cherry Cupcake... then going back later that night for another.  Somewhere between the two cherry blossom cupcakes I took... a pregnancy test.  Even though Emma wasn't actually conceived while we were there, it is the time and place I'll always remember becoming a Mom.  

Now my little girl is such a girl...

 ...who puts out her little hand every time she sees something that resembles a bracelet as if she's saying, "Oh you found my bangle!"

She loves bubble baths and her flowers....

And loves to be tickled.

Sweet Emma.


Enjoy the rest of the original cherry blossom post below...

 Last week, Mike had to go to DC for work.  When booking his hotel, he was amazed at how expensive it was - something must be going on... Cherry Blossoms!

I was on the next train out - literally.  I took the train!  It was lovely - a slow and steady ride, but very comfy with wireless internet, a cafe, an almost empty car (train car) with giant seats.  I highly recommend it.  If you have plenty of time on your hands, plenty of time.

I got up early my first morning there and went straight to the Tidal Basin to see the Cherry Blossoms in bloom.

They're in shades of white and pink - all stages of bloom.

These almost look like mini peonies.

There are thousands of trees - they were a gift to the US from Japan in the early 1900's.  They were a gift of friendship.

Many cameras were out...

I like the green painted lamp posts with the pink trees.

The branches are so soft and full looking.  

Just the slightest shade of light pink.

Sprinkles is one of my favorite chain cupcake bakeries.  The Georgetown location had a cherry flavor in honor of the Cherry Blossoms.

It was delicious - in fact, I ate the first one before I thought of taking a photo.  After I ate it on the walk home, I made Mike go back with my later for another - so I could get a photo... and another cupcake.  I'm planning a cherry cupcake recipe soon.

Mike got a Marshmallow Filled Chocolate - tasted like a Hostess Cupcake.

After the Tidal Basin I headed to The White House.  This is the US Treasury building that sits next to the White House.  This tulip magnolia tree was one of the most brilliant in the city and the grass the most lush.

Look at the softness - such thick and elegant blooms.

Quite amazing.

Here is the White House with a pale pink tulip magnolia tree in bloom.

This is the Kitchen Garden at The White House - one of the First Lady's Healthy Kids' initiatives. 

It was a very neat garden - I am planning something similar. 

This was the plaque in front of the garden said, "...now I shall plant, if at all, more for the public than for myself."

The White House, while very grand, is dwarfed in DC by all of the enormous buildings.  It does, very much, seem like a house...

Until you look closely at the roof.

This is the press center at The White House - all of the major networks have permanent posts set up on press stand and are there all day.


I was almost envious of the grounds crew - what a fun job!

 This is the Executive Office Building that sits on the other side of the White House.   These were some of the first tulips in bloom in the city.

Pansies and grape hyacinth were stuffed into every planter, welcoming in Spring.

I stopped by one of my favorite museums - The American Craft museum. 

Look how the gold framed paintings are arranged on the gallery wall -  a trend we see everywhere today.

My favorite was, of course, the cow.

This blown glass exhibit was stunning.  The artist copied a Dutch painting of "abundance" all in hand-blown glass.

I was really amazed by the faux wood stained paneling in the grand gallery rooms.  I've never seen wood trim and paneling painted in such a convincing way - I'm inspired.  I can't wait to mimic this on some of my painted pieces that I'd like to turn into 'stained-wood'.

For the sake of this post, we'll pretend that the Bureau of Engraving and Printing turns out handsome letterpressed stationery and invitations...  right?