When we set our agenda of all the things I hoped the kids would be able to see and experience, I admittedly called the plan ambitious. Others were calling it "insane." However, when all was said and done, we accomplished a whole lotta' sightseeing. Here's the rundown:
Monday: Scored handicapped parking in front of the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History. Trekked some blocks to the National Archives and although an hour and a half early according to our timed entry reservation, they let us in. Toured through there for around two hours before trekking city block upon city block, over hill and dale, through a sculptures garden, to Capitol Hill where we happened upon a press conference regarding the Supreme Court hearings on healthcare. Saw the protestors in front of the Supreme Court, pointed out the Library of Congress, and then trekked another galaxy into the eating district to stuff our faces with burgers and fries from Good Stuff Eatery. With full tummies, we trekked back to Capitol Hill for our staff led tour of the Capitol. In there almost three hours we saw everything we could, including both galleries and even at the favor of a security guard we were allowed into a press room for a special picture. Home again.
Tuesday: I jumped out of the car in front of the Holocaust Museum to wait in line for about 35 minutes but scored major tickets to the museum for that day. Met the others at the Smithsonian Castle and then on to the Air and Space Museum then the Holocaust Museum followed by lunch followed by the Natural History Museum. Home again.
Wednesday: Scored handicapped parking on Constitution Avenue right next to Constitution Park where we then toured the WWI, WWII, D.C., Korean, Vietnam, and Vietnam Women's Memorials/Monuments. Climbed up the steps into the Lincoln Memorial. Also glimpsed the MLK, Jr. Memorial and the Albert Einstein Memorial (which was blocked off and under construction). Drove by the Thomas Jefferson Memorial, Air Force Memorial, and the White House. That afternoon we toured the Smithsonian Museum of American History. Several exhibits, almost the entire west wing, are under renovation though so not as exciting. Serendipitously we happened into a special MathAlive exhibit in the underground International Gallery that was really neat for the kids. Home again.
Thursday: Traveled to Arlington National Cemetery. Took a wrong turn on the way but ended up getting to view the Iwo Jima Memorial and then made it back to Arlington to not only see a changing of the guard ceremony but also two wreath laying ceremonies. That afternoon we went to the Newseum. Home again.
Friday: Overslept. Gave hugs, kisses, and farewells. Limped to the car with packed bags and then
We didn't get into things like the Pentagon or the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, which we wanted to do, because they require a 4-6 week advance reservation. However, there is now a reason to go back and all of our main goals were accomplished.
Educational, yes. Exhausting, yes. Priceless, yes. I'm very thankful for how God gave the provision in my friend K, the time, the opportunity, the funds, the weather (it was fabulous!) and in all of the many details.
Here ends the telling of the brain dump, status report edition.