Washington DC Trip- Day 6 – White House (Again), Holocaust Museum, Going Home!

Since our hotel was so close to the White House and it was so busy the first time we stopped by there we decided to give it another try and get a better family pic. šŸ™‚ 

However, when we got there they had moved the fence line out all the way across the street and had cops everywhere!
I asked one of the guards by the gate why we had to be so far back and he gave a true politician answer and just said, “At anytime things can change. Come back in 5-10 min.” šŸ˜› LOL! 
We didn’t have time to hang out that long but from what we could tell, and from talking to other visitors were saying, we think they were moving the President around and so they were keeping everyone at a safe distance. šŸ™‚ 
So we did our best to capture our visit. I actually think being further away turned out better. Plus the crowds weren’t nearly as bad! šŸ™‚ 
Alayna took a selfie of us! šŸ˜‰ 
Jared thought this was funny. A guy had a whole tent set up with tons of political statements. He clearly wasn’t a fan of the government. 
What’s really important in Alayna’s life are these! She LOVES Cheez-it’s! We had about a half a box left and she didn’t want to throw them out so she took them with her and finished the rest of them in about 2.2 minutes! LOL! 
After the White House we had reservations to the Holocaust Museum. 
In hindsight we probably shouldn’t have ended our trip on such a heavy note. But we were all glad we went. It was really difficult to see everything these poor souls went through.
The first experience we went through was Daniel’s Story. 

Then we got in line for our timed tickets to see the rest of the museum.  
 They have you choose a little booklet of a real person from the Holocaust before you enter the elevator to go up to the top floor. 
A quick story… As we entered the elevator to go up to the top floor the doors closed, the short video played, and then an elderly man spoke. He said, “I want you all to know that there is a Holocaust Survivor in this elevator right now.”
Shocked & surprised everyone begins to look around and then he points to a small, beautiful, elderly woman with auburn hair and lipstick to match, standing in the corner. Everyone looked at her. She smiled & became bashful & waved off the attention. But looking at her our hearts instantly broke for what she had gone through. I was bawling as we exited the elevator. It was powerful!
Jared walked over to the couple and expressed his apologies for the horrible and unimaginable things she had to endure. We wished later we would have gotten a picture with her. But wanted to respect her time there and allow her to have the space she needed. I can’t fathom what this exhibit brings back to her mind. She must be an incredible woman!
There are no words for this experience. All of us were moved to tears. The exhibit is so well done. You can feel those people who lost their lives in that place with you. You can also feel the evil that created this atrocity! 
There was a lot of information/history, clothing, tools, & personal artifacts to take in. The tour is self led & reverent.
A photo of the US’s response.

They had books with pages and pages and pages of stories from some of the survivors. They actually had them recorded and playing over a loud speaker in glass rooms and you could follow along as the stories were being told. 

The concentration camps were absolutely hell for these poor souls. They played a video of the experiments they would perform on them. They would infect them with diseases, put them in ice baths to see how it would affect them (most froze to death) to help determine how to help their soldiers under those conditions. They put them in pressure chambers to see what it would do to the body to help their pilots. They were literally treated like lab rats! I couldn’t watch much of it. I had to walk away! šŸ’”šŸ˜­ 

These are their shoes. Thousands and thousands of shoes from the victims. Everyone who I’ve spoken to said this room is the one that haunts them and they remember the most from the museum. It definitely leaves you with cold chills. 

In the Museum they have a Hall of Remembrance. This week happens to be when they are holding several Remembrance events. We were lucky to sit and listen to the reading of the names of the men, women, and children killed during the Holocaust. It is a symbolic yet very personal way of remembering these individuals. The Museum provides lists of victimsā€™ names, or you may bring your own. It’s difficult to hear name after name after name being read. Especially when they are the names of babies & children who were only 1 years old or 4 years old. šŸ˜¢
We were glad we went. But it was a heavy way to end our trip. We spent 2 hours in the Museum and by the end we were all trying to find the exit quickly. Our hearts just couldn’t take it any longer. And it made us pause & think how extraordinarily blessed we are to be able to leave…. Those men, women, and children didn’t have that luxury. God bless their souls! ā¤ļøšŸ™ā¤ļø
After the museum we caught an Uber back towards the hotel to grab a bite to eat. We stopped at a place called Potbelly. They had sandwiches and stuff. We couldn’t get over the size of the pickles they had! Alayna’s 2nd love…PICKLES!! šŸ˜› 
We swung by the hotel, grabbed our luggage and took an Uber to the airport. We actually ended up with the very same driver that dropped us off for lunch! LOL! 
  
 Some of us fall asleep the moment we get in cars! LOL!!!
We made it safely to the airport and back to Arizona! It was an incredible trip we won’t forget! In so many ways this vacation blessed our family. We learned so much about our nation’s history, we bonded as a family, we saw God’s hand in so many ways through out this trip, and I was able to do things I never thought I’d ever be able to do again! My heart is so full of gratitude!!!! <3 

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