Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Family Vacation 2015: DC Days 4 & 5

 So what we're calling the 4th day of the vacation actually fell on the 4th of July, which is a very exciting time to be in DC.  (Although, in fairness, most of the locals leave and tourists take the city for a big, high security celebration on the mall).  We knew our kids would be getting tired at this point and had zero ambitious to take them to the National Mall.  We had planned to go to a smaller local festival, which rained out.  Instead, we took them to the National Cathedral, which was beautiful as always.
The Cathedral sustained damage in a 2011 earthquake so various sections were under construction.

 When we arrived there was an organ concert going on.  We listened to it mostly from below in the gift shop and through the catacombs and small chapels underground.  I really wanted the kids to see the inside of the cathedral, but clearly they were going to need to run before the concert ended so we went back outside to look around on a surprisingly cool day, with the rain largely at bay. (Note, I forgot to get M a patriot dress.  Heather had gotten Cleo a dress for the occasion that Cleo decided not to wear and M promptly put on.  They were deep in to sharing clothes at this point and everyone was happy).

 To my great delight, the bishop's garden was open. I don't think it was in the past and I adored it. If you know about how I travel, you know that it always involves a garden, and this trip had been lacking one.  This garden was just right for our crew. It had lots of little secret places, interesting plants that were often edible, and all sorts of paths to discover.

 We bought a few gifts in the gift shop, which B graciously carried.  He picked out a gargoyle for his bookshelf, which was extra sweet as Aunt Audra & Uncle Zach bought him a stuffed gargoyle at that same gift shop when they visited and he was only 1!
 M & Cleo

Yes, despite lack of photo evidence I was on the trip too!

 Rest/Snack time with amazing views.

Love this smile :)

 My mother and this gardener would definitely get along.
 Everyone knew it was our last real day together and seemed more willing to have photos.  M & Cleo requested and posed for this one in particular.
 We spent a few minutes inside after the choir concert exploring

People were getting pretty worn out so we stopped for lunch at Noodles & Co and drove some more through always scenic Georgetown before making our way home for naps.  The rule in our house is that every single person is required to nap on the fourth of July as we'll all be up so late.  I think almost everyone failed at doing that.  Meanwhile, our hosts were sleeping soundly upstairs.  Finally, we made a break for the car to go get one more scoop from Dairy Godmother.  The moment we left it started to down pour, then moved right on to torrential rains.  We continued, undeterred, and got completely soaking wet walking across the street and down two store fronts from our car.  The custard, sorbet, and posicle were all delicious and totally worth being sopping wet.  Of course the rain cleared not long after and we enjoyed a grilled supper with our hosts before heading to the fireworks. 

 Our kids really like watching fireworks out of the back of the car.  This is our third year so now it is a tradition.  This time, we watched from the top of a parking garage at National Airport.  We arrived early to get a good spot and worried about all the clouds hanging in the air.
 Everyone was too full of excitement to just hang out so we went down in to the terminal to wander around and get a treat.

Yes, we'd already had custard, but clearly still room for frozen yogurt.  It is a national holiday, after all. 

The kids all played, ran, danced and made up games.  It is great to have memories of them here as I come through this airport on every trip. 

 Then we headed back to the car and broke out the glow sticks - much silliness ensued.

 M as "Bo on the GO" (A cartoon character)
 Yes, they watched from the top of the car this year too.  The low hanging clouds did impede the view a bit and all the smoke hung in the wet air.  It was still a great show.

And that was that.  We hopped in the car for a fairly quick ride home and finished packing our bags.  

Day 4 - Family Notes:

M- Dairy Godmother ice cream and new coloring book, watching fireworks

B - ice cream at the airport and watching fireworks

E- seeing airplanes (at the airport),  garden,  yummy ice cream & Popsicle

Brent - fireworks & blackberry blueberry cobbler

Abbey - bishop's garden & driving up Wisconsin Avenue (in Georgetown)- fireworks fun

 Day 5: - Heading Home
 The next morning, we headed right back to the airport, dropped off the rental car and checked bags, and began the trek home.  (In fairness this technically is a six day trip as they traveled a day to get to me, but you get the gist).
 They make a great travel crew. I was truly impressed at how well they did.  They took care of their own stuff, did what they were told, played together, were quiet on the plane, and did almost zero whining.  They hadn't charged the ipad since the trip out (!) so had about 6 minutes of electronics in the roughly 8 hours of total transit time home. And they didn't need it.  They were awesome. I am definitely going more places with this crew.
Finally we were back in hot Oklahoma and our next adventure of living in our new home began.  It was a great trip and I feel so amazed that we really pulled it off with all the other things going on and all the stress and logistics heaped on our family this summer.  The kids impressed me so much and I truly had a great time on vacation.  Staying with friends helped tremendously, but I think our kids are pretty amazing too, which was the best.  Hooray for great family fun and more adventures to come!

No comments:


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...