It’s been a whirlwind week in Washington, DC for Small Business Week. I won Best Businessperson of the Year for Washington State (click here to see that blog post). If you had told me a year ago that I would have traveled across the country, three weeks postpartum with a newborn, I would have told you that you had clearly taken a train to Crazytown. But life has a funny way of surprising each of us, including me.
Every single President since Kennedy has met with the winners of Small Business Week. So when the opportunity came up to go to DC and meet the President of the United States, well, Crazytown, here I come! I was positively giddy that meeting the President might be ticked off my ‘bucket list.’ So, my supportive husband and I made elaborate plans to come to Washington DC, with a newborn, to participate in Small Business Week. But really, it was all about Obama for me!
The trip to the White House did happen and Jamisen was pre-cleared through security, even without a social security number but alas, the President did not appear. Despite sending high ranking officials who assured us that we “had no better friend than the President,” this President chose to not meet with the “drivers of the Nation’s economy.” That ended up being par for the course for elected officials as not one single Congresssperson deigned to show up at the Congressional Reception, held at the Senate Building. It was a clear indicator that DC is a lot of lip service when it comes to small business. The top entrepreneurs in the entire country were at their doorstep and they literally could not be bothered to walk the few steps to the reception. It was quite the snub to all the award winners who put their lives and businesses on hold to spend the week in DC.
Despite that disappointment, Chris and I put our normal optimistic happy faces on and made the best of the week, meeting other awesome entrepreneurs and taking in the sights. Washington DC is steeped in history and we were able to take in the Mall with all the monuments twice. We are certain Jamisen will be very thankful for the memories we made on his behalf.
The highlight of the week turned out to be a visit to the Google offices. They are bright, happy, fun and cheerful and man oh man, you should see their kitchen! There was so much yummy, awesome, healthy food in there (swoon). I want to be Google when I grow up or at least have their kitchen. Google was so excited about the Small Business Week winners that they gave us all their unreleased Chrome books. I’ll do another separate review of the awesome, generous gift but for now, just know that I heart Google. And I’m using their new +1 service and it’s pretty cool.
All the State winners; that’s me, in the bright yellow dress, on the left.
And a fuzzy photo of me accepting my award from Administrator Mills of the SBA. I’ll have better, non-phone, photos to share when we get home.
I was so lucky that my sweet husband took time off of his work to be the World’s Best Baby Carrier and general support. He and Jamisen got to bond, alot, because Chris never put him down. =)
For the final night of SBA Small Business Week, there was a fantastic black tie gala. Lil Man got dressed up for the occasion too, complete with a bow tie. Unfortunately, because of the feeding needs of small children, we didn’t get to stay for the dancing but it was fun to get dressed up and bring the cutest accessory in the entire place.
After living in a hotel with a newborn this week, both Chris and I are really looking forward to getting back Washington state and to our comfy baby’fied home. We’re both just a little tired (ha ha – make that bone weary zombified tired) but also thrilled about the memories we were able to make as a family. Jamisen might not remember them but we’ll always have this blog post for proof.