This August, we found time to take two overnight family trips! This is huge for us, as since we have been a family of five we haven’t been able to make traveling happen as often as I would like, for a multitude of reasons. The first escape was to Virginia, with multiple stops in Washington D.C. – first to measure for a woodworking job, then to experience the newer Air + Space Museum, and finally to the Smithsonian Zoo.
We stopped for a quick tour of the capital, driving by the Washington Monument, catching a glimpse of the Lincoln Memorial and the White House, saw the Red Cross building, the stunning Corcoran gallery (pictured here) and more. The architecture is impressive and there are so many free museums to explore!
Our gracious host was my sister-in-law and her beautiful family. Cousins had time to play, we were well fed, and slept so well after leaving the house at a crazy early hour.
This Virginia Air + Space museum is stuffed with all kinds of aircraft and has something for everyone to enjoy, except perhaps our 10 year old daughter, who was bored (?). Meanwhile my three year old was crying because he wanted to fly and blast off in a real rocket. Seeing the Enola Gay is a heavy thing. Experiencing the Space shuttle Discovery was bit of a mind blowing experience. Whether you appreciate the history, the engineering, or just the aesthetics, it is worth the trip to the Udvar-Hazy center. The scale of things in that hangar are epic- like the sleek length of the Concorde.
We also hit the playground, the swim club, a cute coffee shop, and played with sparklers and bang snaps while we were there. It was a good 44 hours!
I’ve never been a huge fan of zoos, I always found them sad to see the animals out of their natural habitat. But it seemed like a great option with the small kids – and it was amazing. A male lion got up from his nap and roared – the sounds was incredible. A tiger cooled off by playing in the water. Snakes galore. Elephants. And Lucy the orangutan came over right to the glass and stared directly into my face and checked out the children – I hope I never forget those moments. Apparently, this is Lucy’s specialty: observing the humans. There were misting stations to beat the heat and many thought provoking animal sculptures from the Washed Ashore project made of ocean trash.