My brother came in town on Sunday with his girlfriend for a Physics convention and after Mike left for another week out of town, Mikey and I hopped in a cab with some overnight bags and headed to their hotel in DC. They were staying at the Washington Court Hotel which was gorgeous. It was about a block away from the Capital and we could see it perfectly from the 12th floor. This was a PERFECT way to see DC for the first time. Sunday night we ate at a great little Brewery in an old Postal building. It was so good. Monday morning after Lisa so sweetly hit Starbucks for us, AND took Mikey with her so I could sleep an extra couple minutes, our sightseeing began.
Here’s Mikey all ready to play Tour-Guide-
Mikey and Lisa. Thanks SO much Lisa for pushing Mikey most of the day so I could snap pictures-
Mikey spotted a fountain right away-
I have to say that “The Mall” as they call the area surrounding the Capital (and all of the tourist sites) was so much less crowded than I’d imagined. It was almost deserted on Sunday night and not much busier on Monday.
We started off at Union Station. That in itself was SO exciting to me. It was less than a five minute walk from the hotel and happens to be one of the most popular tourist sites in DC. The Metro operates from the station as well as several other lines like Amtrak. The station was HUGE with all kinds of shops and restaurants. The architecture is so amazing. I couldn’t get a very good picture with my camera so I stole this one from the internet. I just HAD to give those of you who haven’t seen it before an idea of how beautiful it is.
Outside of Union Station-
We decided the best and easiest way to see as much as possible without boring Mikey terribly would be to take a tour bus. Fortunately for us, the tour began at Union Station-
We saw the Capital Building-
Mikey, my brother and Lisa (taken the night before)-
The Canadian Embassy-
Bureau of Engraving and Printing (think $$$$)
Thomas Jefferson Memorial-
The one thing we DIDN’T get to see close up was the White House. I was really disappointed-
Madame Tussad’s Wax Museum (next time I am downtown I want to go in this museum for sure)-
This one speaks for itself-
World War II Memorial-
This is the future site of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial-
We decided to stop at one of the Smithsonian Museum’s- The National Museum of Natural History-
All of the Smithsonian Museums are free and although I have only been to this one, it was VERY cool. I would have paid to get in. I definitely want to see more of them. We ate lunch and then walked around. It was neat to see some of the things that were in the Night at the Museum movie-
Remember this Dinosaur-
Some of the other things I found interesting-
Mikey really liked this fish tank. Nemo and Dory were in there
Mikey seemed to be scared of most of the museum. He didn’t like anything that had any kind of skeleton bones nor did he like most of the animals on display. I was amazed at how interested I was since I’ve never really been a big History buff. Hee Hee. I’ll have to take Braeden because I think he would enjoy it too especially as he begins to learn more and more of this stuff in school.
After the museum, we got back on the bus and finished the tour. We saw a lot more than I was able to get pictures of. It was hard to listen to the commentary AND take pictures. Some of the other things we saw on the tour were-
American Indian Museum; Air and Space Museum; Holocaust Museum; Franklin Rosevelt Memorial. We got back to the hotel around 4pm, had a quick power nap and then headed back to Union Station to take the Metro to dinner…..well, that was the plan anyway. All day long, Mikey had talked non-stop about wanting to ride the train (since one of the first things we saw was the train station and since he loves trains more than anything). So, we bought our Metro tickets and headed down to the platform. Almost as soon as we got down into what Mikey called the “dark tunnel,” a train was pulling in, FAST and LOUD. Mikey gripped me for dear life and said with all seriousness, “Get me Outta Here. I do NOT like this….” I could feel his heart racing and the look on his face convinced us we’d better abort mission. We decided to just go back to the restaurant we went to the night before. After dinner, Jack and Lisa rented a Zip Car (due to the length of this blog already, I will just say its a NEAT new thing and you gotta google it) and drove Mikey and I back to Adrianne’s (14 miles away), but not before a little more fun-
Umm, ya, Mikey WAS jumping from the window ledge of our 12th story window. Here he is mid air-
Thanks Jack and Lisa for a great visit. Thanks for letting us crash with you one night, for dinner BOTH nights, for Mikey’s Toy Story prizes and for being so sweet to your little nephew and sister. We miss you already!
SO, Braeden left yesterday to spend almost a month in Panama City with his Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles and cousins. He was really excited and THAT made it easier for me. I’m not sure what made me sadder though, the fact that he is old enough and brave enough to fly alone several times a year or the fact that he was going to be gone for so long. Mikey was NOT happy about his big brother (who he has recently been referring to as his “Best Friend”). Saturday morning when we said we had to go take Braeden to the airport, Mikey started to cry and said that he didn’t want want Braeden to leave. Mike left today for 3 weeks. He DOES get to come home on the weekends, but once again it feels like it did when he was training at the academy. The GREAT news is, once he is done with these 3 weeks (the Friday before 4th of July weekend) he is officially DONE with training (which will have made it almost 8 months of training). He is off on Monday the 5th and on the 6th they have another BIG graduation ceremony. Mikey and I will get to go to his work for the ceremony and then tour the facility. I am excited, but sad that Braeden will not be here (he comes home on July 11). I miss him already, but I know he is having so much fun.
Here is Braeden at the ticket counter yesterday getting ready to fly for the 2nd time ALONE!
Saying goodbye- only I was able to go with him to the gate and I had to wait until his flight took off before leaving-
The Flight Attendant took Braeden back before any of the other passengers. She came back out 5 minutes later asking for my camera. He was IN the cockpit with the CAPTAIN and sitting in the Captain’s chair. SO COOL!-
Mike, the boys and I spent last week in Chantilly, VA with Aaron and Nancy. We had such a fantastic week (with the only downer being that the Flyers lost the Stanley Cup). I can’t believe that these 2 pictures were the only 2 I took all week. Nancy took lots and I will post them as soon as I get copies.
The boys are riding on this train in the food court of a mall we walked around. It was the greatest place. The play area is SO neat too-
THIS is the coolest thing. In the middle of the southbound and northbound lands of the Interstate is not grass, but the Metro. We are certainly in the heart of BIG CITY living.
Taken from the car as Mike drove-
Not too much planned for this week. I am actually hoping to begin Potty Training Mikey. Wish me luck. He is just SO not interested.
Last Saturday Mike and I took the boys to Six Flags America near Baltimore, MD. Adrianne’s house is only 15 miles from the park so it was very convenient. We bought season tickets back in May since they are the same price as a one-day ticket if you buy them in advance. We waited until last Saturday to go because it was the Grand Opening of the new Thomas the Tank Engine (aka Thomas the Train) park AND it was Thomas’ Birthday. Not only did they do such a great job creating the Thomas Park to look so real, they hosted a great Thomas Birthday Party complete with cake, party hats and other Thomas favors for the kids. Mikey had SO much fun. Since it’s so close and we get in free any time we want to go (and they sell the BEST mini doughnuts), I think we will go often. Braeden was such a trooper and waited patiently for us to finish up in Thomas Town so he could go on the “Big Kid” rides. He went on a couple BIG roller coasters with Mike (I loved the fact that I could use needing to stay with Mikey as my my excuse for not riding the roller coasters) Braeden also loved the swings and the water ride (see picture below). It was a really fun day. Since school is not out here for a couple more weeks, it was not crowded at all, even for a weekend. The funniest thing about the whole day was that Mikey was SO SO scared to ride the carousel (he was crying), but rode a little roller coaster without a fuss (it went really fast and jerked you from side to side- it was even too much for me and I am 31 not 3). The first thing he said when he woke up the next morning was, “Can I go see Thomas again please?” I guess those season tickets will come in handy.
Here are some pictures from the day-
This Thomas is made completely of Lego-
Thomas the Tank Engine ride-
Daddy and Mikey on Thomas-
Thomas leaving the station-
Thomas on the Move-
Thomas at the railroad crossing-
Harold the Helicopter ride-
Daddy and Mikey riding Harold the Helicopter-
Bertie the Bus ride-
My boys on Bertie the Bus-
Bertie the Bus ride in action-
B on Cranky the Crane (this ride in Thomas Town was not so babyish). Mike went on an adult version of this that went about 5 times higher-
This farris wheel in Thomas Town actually scared ME-
Daddy and Mikey waiting for the Diesel ride (I think Mikey looked nervous because in the movies Diesel is “mean”)-
Daddy and Mikey on Mean Diesel (Diesel’s face doesn’t look so mean)-
The Roundhouse (this looks SO real)-
Daddy, Mikey and Percy-
This playarea in itself is fantastic. Under the little water tower are sprayers that spray water all around for the kids to run and play in-
Mikey and I with Sir Topham Hat (the man in charge of railway in the Thomas movies)-
The boys taking a little break while waiting on Daddy to finish a ride-
Braeden spotted Joker while we were sitting-
Daddy and B on the bumper cars. Mikey laughed HYSTERICALLY (which made me almost pee my pants) every time he saw Braeden and Mike come around the track-
Daddy and B on the race cars-
You would never be able to tell by his expression, but this was one of his favorite rides. I think he rode it 5 times and after the ride was over, he stood on the bridge to get even more soaked by the huge wave that the boat made each time it came down the drop-
Daddy and Mikey playing a game-
This train was in Looney Toon town and Mikey had to ride alone because there was a weight restriction-
Mikey didn’t like it at all that he was on the train alone (no other kids were in it either)-
YA, we had a GREAT family day!