Today was the big day - the day of the White House Egg Roll. Our tickets were for 11:45 and we weren't supposed to get there until 11:00 so we had a relaxing morning at the hotel before making our way to Pennsylvania Avenue. The egg roll was held at the Equinox which basically is the south lawn of the White House. Once we got there we just followed the throngs of people until we found the entrance for Group C which is what we were. Evidently there were about 30,000 tickets given out to the egg roll and there were 5 different times/groups so approximately 6,000 people were at each egg roll. And I believe it! It was so crowded! We stood in a very long line of people and just kept moving with the flow until finally we were at the entrance. I was surprised that security was not tighter than it was. It was really no different than going into one of the parks at Disney World - just had to get my bag checked and that was it. But unlike at Disney World, there were snipers on the roofs of the White House and the surrounding buildings. It's not every day that you get to see that so we all thought that was pretty exciting, especially Zachary!
Heading to get in line
Making our way through the very long line
The kids did great standing in line for so long in the hot sun. Once we actually got through the line and got my bag checked and got inside the fenced area, we had another very long wait. We were in a big mob of people waiting to walk up to the south lawn and then it all started to go downhill. Dave got us all a bottle of water and Zachary had opened his just enough so that his cap was still barely attached. I didn't realize that this was how he wanted it so I jerked it all the way off and boy, did he get mad! Because of that one little action, he was mad the entire time we were at the egg roll. He pouted and complained and frowned. We had so many "eye level, you better straighten up" talks with him. We told him that he was lucky to even be there and that this was possibly the only chance that he might ever have to be on the White House lawn. But nothing we tried worked. He continued to pout and we had to force him to let us take pictures of him and in those, he didn't smile.
Because it was so crowded, there were long lines for everything. Grace and Zachary neither one were interested in actually participating in the egg roll or the egg hunt. They only wanted to dye eggs so we did. After we dyed eggs, we went over the stage area and saw Justin Bieber in concert. Grace didn't know who he was and I explained to her that he was the "it" boy right now and once we got back home and she told all her little friends that she got to see him perform, then she would be really glad she did. Of course, once she saw him she thought he was cute and he was fun to watch. This was when we also got to see Michelle Obama and her daughters. We first saw the secret service agent so we knew they were close by then we saw them on the big screen. I tried to get close enough to get a good picture of them but was never able to. I got a picture of the top of their heads and then I got a really good look at them when they were leaving when the concert was over but I couldn't get my camera up quick enough.
Snipers on the roof of the White House
I think this is one of the few pictures that Zachary is smiling in. He didn't even want to get his picture made but I told him through gritted teeth that he was going to get his picture made with the Easter Bunny in front of the White House and that he was going to smile and look like he was enjoying it!
After we got our souvenir eggs and left the White House lawn we went over to the Red Cross building where Blue Star Families had refreshments set up for those that had been at the egg roll. I was able to meet Stepanie Himel-Nelson, New Media Director, and Tiffany Isaacson, Membership Director. By this point we were all starving so we walked and had a delicious afternoon "linner" at McCormick & Schmick's then got in the car and made the long drive home. Thanks Claire for the egg roll tickets! It was awesome!!!!!