Sunday, April 28, 2013

Boston Strong

If any of you have Instagram and are reading this blog, you probably saw the overload of pictures this past week of our trip in Boston!

Let me just say, it was AWESOME!!!!!!

We were able to to go on such an incredible adventure because my sweet and genius husband Brigham was able to present his Alzheimer's research at the Experimental Biology conference! He is also an official member of the American Association of Anatomists. We were so lucky to go with his lab and Dr. Wisco, who is the professor leading all the research. It was wonderful to listen and learn more about the efforts to tackle Alzheimer's disease, especially because it hits so close to home. (My grandpa had Alzheimer's for 12 years before he passed away).
Brigham and his poster presentation

in action

When we were not at the conference center, we took full advantage of all the wonderful sights and activities in Boston, including

RED SOX! We were so lucky to get in, and we had great seats for cheap because we scalped tickets in the 4th inning. We were also lucky to see them play the Royals, Brigham's home-town team.

We loved the feel of a smaller stadium. It felt so intimate and it was so awesome to be in a place where everyone was so united, especially after the bombings. I even got to take home one of these posters!

We also were able to go on the Freedom Trail! We ended up just going to see a couple of the sights and did the tour on our own. We LOVED seeing all of our nations history--here are some of our favorite pictures.

George protecting his city

One of our favorite spots was this old cemetery. We loved the blooming trees above the old headstones.  However, we unfortunately could not find my ancestor's grave (he is buried somewhere in Boston) since everything is so worn away. 

The victims of the Boston Massacre and major Revolutionaries such as Paul Revere, Samuel Adams, and John Hancock are buried here. 

We loved the skull angel on the headstone.

Harvard Yard was also on our list of go-see's! We ended up sitting in a building and saw all the students going to class. Brigham noticed that EVERYONE had a backpack on.... a very heavy backpack. 

We also ended up going to this delicious chocolate store (thank you Ginnie!) called L.A. Burdick. As we sat and enjoyed our delicious hot chocolate (tastes just like the chocolate shots at Cucina Toscana) while sitting by two Harvard professors grading papers, it was a cool place.

One of the coolest and saddest things in Boston was the aftermath of the bombings. For most of our trip Copley Square was completely shut down, including the subway stop. We ended up having to go around it a lot because our hotel is 2 blocks away, but we didn't mind, and neither did anyone else. Here is the first memorial by trinity church. 

On the day we flew out, Copley square re-opened and so we decided that we would go see it and the new memorial before we left.

There were running shoes everywhere to show support. The bottom left photo is where one of the bombs went off, all the windows were blown out. 
As we walked around we were able to go inside Trinity and Old South Church. I was in heaven because it brought me back to my Spain days where we saw every cathedral in every town. 

Trinity Church was only open for prayers and meditation. As we sat there in the beautiful building you could definitely feel all the love and support for those hurt in the bombings.

Old South Church

Trinity Church

Trinity Church
We had such an amazing trip!!! We feel so blessed that we were still able to go to Boston after everything that happened. 

We are currently in Cusco, Peru and are soooo excited to begin our Volunteer Program Monday! Ill post more later :)

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Anatomy Academy

Last friday was the LAST DAY of all of our AA meetings... AA as in Anatomy Academy!!!!!

Anatomy Academy is a 7 week program that teaches 5th and 6th graders all about their anatomy, physiology and nutrition. Each week we taught a certain area in the body--for example one week we taught all about the heart, including taking our pulse before and after physical activity. All the kids love it when we come because we pretty much do fun activities that promote being healthy... and they also get no homework. 

The program also conducts research aimed at fighting the childhood obesity epidemic, a HUGE problem in our country today. 

Here is a video they made after the program began in LA last year!

For our program, we went to Freedom Academy, a charter school in Provo. Brigham (sorry for the major brag session ahead) is the head coordinator for the school, meaning he was over all 6 classes which have around 25 kids each, as well as all the 60 mentors (those are the BYU and UVU students that teach the kids). He did an amazing job :) The principal was even asking him to speak to all the students at an assembly. 

I was in a 6th grade classroom and my mentor partner was none other than Isabel!!!!! (Isabel and I were on study abroad together in Spain :))

Here is our awesome group!! We both had sooooo much fun teaching all of our amazing kids! 

If you are at BYU or UVU and want an awesome service experience, do Anatomy Academy! It is the best:)
Contact Dr. Wisco for more info! (He is the awesome professor that started this incredible program)