Drive to Washington DC

Drive to Washington DC

Yesterday was a long driving day. Seems fitting that our odometer would roll over 200,000 KM during the trip. We went through seven states all together to get to our final destination for the next few nights. We started out in Massachusetts, through part of Connecticut, to New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and ending up in Maryland. We have some good travelers!

Our route wasn’t the most direct route but we decided to take a stop over in Allentown PA to visit the Da Vinci Science Center. Every vacation we go on we take advantage of our Discovery Centre membership. With the membership we are included in the ASTC Passport Travel Program. This is the Association of Science – Technology Centers. It means that the large number of places included in the program allow us entry using our existing membership for our local centre. The Da Vinci Science Center is one of the ones included on the list and it’s how we found and choose the stop.

As we pulled in and started walking to the door we started looking for the pass. It was no where to be found! We had just renewed it shortly before the trip and it had arrived in the mail about a week ago. Somehow we neglected to bring it with us 😦 We called home to get my Father in Law to dig through so we could at least get a picture and see if that would work, but he wasn’t able to find it. We had just had a long part of the drive and didn’t want to continue on so we figured we would just suck it up and pay the admission to go in.

The friendly person at the front desk quoted us about $90 for our family. I asked if she had anyway to lookup ASTC memberships and explained the story. She even tried calling the Discovery Centre to verify but wasn’t able to get through. In the end she said no worries and just let us in on our word! I was blown away and so happy. I was feeling pretty bummed that we would have to spend that much money. She turned my day around very quickly by that simple act of kindness and I am so thankful.

Today we headed into Washington DC. It was a beautiful day even if it was a little hotter than I would like. At one point the temperature in the car was showing 37℃ and with the humidity it felt like around 45. We did a fair amount of walking, my Fitbit is showing at over 16,000 steps, but the kids did great for that as well.

We started out by visiting some of the Memorials we didn’t see last visit, the George Mason, Jefferson, and Roosevelt. They are all impressive and very awesome to see in person. They have a great view across the tidal basin of Washington and the Washington Memorial. Once we were done there we went to the Museum of Natural History as part of the Smithsonian Institute. We had been here last time but Alexandria really wanted to go through the Butterfly Pavilion inside which we skipped last visit, so we decided to do it this time.

From there we headed into Old Town Alexandria. We wandered a bit and ended up at Ben and Jerry’s for the first time. Such good ice cream, but a bit more than we intended to spend. There offer a free trolley ride up and down King Street so we used that as a way to see a bit more of the shops along that street. Even though we didn’t get to spend a huge amount of time it seemed like a beautiful little city, and there was lots more we wanted to do. There is some rain in the forecast so maybe we will make it back for some of the indoor things.

First zoo visit of the year

This weekend has been a birthday weekend for Jen and the kids. On Saturday they went to two different parties and yesterday we had another one to attend.

The party was at Roo’s Playland. It had been a few years since we had taken the kids there, but they used to love it. It is a giant indoor playground with all kinds of different things to do. Noah didn’t remember being there in the past at all, but he didn’t want to leave when it was time.

After the party we headed to our local zoo. Everyone else had been there once already this year, but it was last weekend so I had missed out. It was a beautiful day so it was a perfect way to spend a bit of time outside. We managed to arrive right at feeding time which always amazes me. Especially the lions. Gail one of the zoo owners will go right into the lions area and hand feed the them.

She used to get audience participation when it came to feeding a black bear they had at the zoo but, he was old and passed away. They have a younger black bear now but I don’t think they do the same with him. They didn’t today at least.

The zoo started out as a farm with some exotic animals and grew into a really cool zoo. The owners still live onsite and really consider the animals part of their family. Their Facebook page has all kinds of great pictures. I really enjoy the pictures of the lions the most. The old ones where they have some real cool interactions and the new ones documenting the growth of the new pride.

After the zoo we stopped for a quick ice cream snack on the way home too. The proper way to take advantage of one of our first t-shirt weather days this year.

Yesterday I left work a bit early to meet up with the rest of my family for an ice cream after school.

My oldest, in a new school for grade nine this year, was proud to tell me she joined her first extra curricular club. She wanted me to guess what she had joined though.

While I was thinking my four year old son with the most sarcastic look on his face, tone in his voice and seeming very proud to burn his big sister.

“Was it grade one?”