Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Washington, DC

We've been travelling again! Living out of suitcases has become the norm for several months now and I think we've got the drill down. Who packs what; who carries what; who loads what; the kids are big enough that they each have a job and something to be responsible for.
Grady had three days of business in Washington, DC so we headed north a day early to enjoy some things as a family. I knew I had three days to navigate the sights on my own with three kids in tow, so I was happy for a full day of family fun time together.
We spent a few hours in the Air and Space Museum and enjoyed a long walk through the Mall to see some of the monuments - barely scratching the surface of all there is to see.

The weather was wonderful and the crowds were light. In fact, it felt strange at times because there were no kids to be seen. September really is a great time to travel.
Visiting our nation's capitol is a powerful experience. I love the history, the symbolism, and the representation of freedom. It's also a sobering place to visit because much of what we see, visit, and pay respect to has been crushed under the guise of entitlement and relativism. Socialism shines brighter as our freedoms grow dimmer. It's complicated to explain these things to my kids because it's complicated for me to fully grasp.
After five hours of time on our feet, we called it a day and returned to our hotel to relax for the evening. Swimming followed by a movie in bed was a great ending to a great day.

We woke to unexpected clouds and light sprinkles the next morning so I altered our sightseeing agenda and opted for a visit to the US Postal Museum for a couple of hours. I knew the museum was small and hoped it would be a good way to be inside for a couple of hours until we could enjoy being back on the Mall or out at the National Zoo.
I think the kids had fun learning about the US postal system, the Pony Express, and how a stamped envelope gets from our home to another home many miles away. Really though, driving and riding a stagecoach, mail truck, and mail train were the highlight.

We left the museum just before lunch and were happy to see partly cloudy skies and dry city streets. The hands-down vote was to head to the zoo. Thank goodness for GPS directions on my phone because - WOW! - the neighborhood streets of downtown DC are not for the faint of heart!
We had the zoo almost to ourselves - literally. We passed a handful of elderly couples, an Asian tour group, and several lone moms pushing strollers. Did I mention that September is a great time to travel?
The National Zoo is a wonderful zoo and I'm thankful for the long afternoon we spent there, but my kids and I agree that the zoo close to our home is more enjoyable. The National Zoo has very large exhibits, which means lots of walking to get from one place to the next, and lots of space for animals to hide or rest without being well seen.
During our last day and a half in DC, the kids an I explored the National Harbor and Old Town Alexandria. From watching boats, playing in sand, choosing candy from the Peep's store, and visiting a children's museum at the National Harbor... to riding the trolley, seeing "really old buildings from way before we were born," climbing on cannons, and feeding masses of pigeons in Old Town... we had a great time. A really great time!
A lot of walking. A lot of learning. A lot of looking. A lot of touching. A lot of swimming. A lot of cartoon-watching in bed. A lot of yummy food.

And a whole lot more walking.
Four days in Washington, DC guarantees family fun. This was our second visit as a family and we explored things the kids had never seen. And, when we return again next time, there will still be more things to see and do than there will be time to do them.


  1. So fun...looks like you had a wonderful time!!! And how do you always get such great pics of all 5 of you??? Do you use the self timer or just find very talented strangers willing to do a photo session? Either way, I love how you capture the family memories! Maybe sometime we can do some sites in DC together! Enjoy your visit with MIL!

    1. Sarah: Just the trusty ole self-timer! :) We had a GREAT time... always lots to see and do. We'll be back next September, for sure, but if we're there before then perhaps we can meet your family, too.

  2. Seriously, you are amazing!!! I was tired walking around DC with just Jason and myself...although...truth be told...there was some running involved. I cannot imagine how you did it one your own with three kids and being preggers! You ROCK!!! Great pics too! My favorite is the very last one! :-)