Monday, November 20, 2017

Day Five in D.C.

After a leisurely morning, we headed over to Mt. Vernon to learn more about America's first president. The property was absolutely beautiful, and we thoroughly enjoyed the tour of the mansion and exploring the grounds and outbuildings.

Washington's Home

The grounds at Mt. Vernon were gorgeous!

George Washington had terrible teeth and had to have
several sets of dentures made. He was self-conscious of this,
which is one reason he always looks so serious in portraits.

The swearing in ceremony

A meeting of the great minds

From there, we made our way to Old Town Alexandria for a late lunch at Virtue Feed and Grain. The food was delicious, and the little town was lovely!

Virtue Feed and Grain in Old Town Alexandria

Weston's lobster pot pie

Our next stop was Arlington Cemetery, and truly I have no words. It completely took my breath away, and I walked around with a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes the entire time we were there. We were just in time to observe the last changing of the guard for the day at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, which was a beautiful and moving thing to behold.

So incredibly thankful for the sacrifice of these brave souls

The changing of the guard at the tomb of the Unknown Soldier

Finally, we stopped to pick up "dinner" at Dangerously Delicious Pies and Coffee. I would not really recommend having chocolate pecan pie for dinner every night, but sometimes when you're on vacation, you've just got to go with what feels right.


Sunday, November 19, 2017

Day Four in D.C.

Today we visited the National Museum of the American Indian and spent several hours there seeing the exhibits, having lunch, and playing in the super fun, interactive kid's area. Later, we walked down to the White House. It was cold and windy out, so after that, we decided to come back to the apartment to warm up and rest, before going out to dinner in Chinatown.

National Museum of the American Indian

Clay loved the softness of the alpaca fur

Max worked and worked on making it through this relay game

Counting with Khipu

The boys loved the quiz game

Clay got to practice weaving

Cooking in an earthen oven

This Trump hotel is very near the White House, and
Clay was convinced this was Trump's real house--
afterall, it does have his name on it!

Max sporting some Benjamin Franklin glasses

My crew at the White House

The front of the White House

There is always something interesting to see in Chinatown

Watching the famous Chinatown noodle maker

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Day Three in D.C.

We had the great privilege to visit Lincoln's Cottage this morning. It is one of the lesser known attractions and most people don't make the effort to get out there, even though it is only three miles from the capitol building. We really enjoyed the tour and museum and appreciated how our tour guide made Lincoln come alive for us.

Lincoln's Cottage

Max was so excited to "meet" his favorite president

Cannons are always a big hit with boys

After our tour of the Cottage, we headed over to Annapolis to tour the Naval Academy. The campus was lovely, and it was so interesting to learn about midshipmen life. When we finished up at the Academy, we made our way down to City Dock for lunch at Middleton Tavern.

Honoring America's first Navy hero

I loved this event building!

The Navy's first plane was built by the Wright brothers

The dorm building was designed to look like the Palace of Versailles in France

The kids really loved seeing the crypt of John Paul Jones

Clay being "Bill" the goat

Middleton Tavern

Eventually, we made our way back to D.C. and stopped by the Jefferson Memorial to pay our respects to another great man before heading back to our apartment to watch the Aggie game.

The back side of the Jefferson Memorial and the beautiful fall colors

Tribute to Thomas Jefferson

Jefferson Memorial

Friday, November 17, 2017

Day Two in D.C.

We did lots of fun things today. First, we visited the National Gallery of Art, which Clay especially loved. After seeing all kinds of art and completing Clay's self-assigned scavenger hunt, we had a picnic in the museum's sculpture garden. Then we made our way over to the National Archives Building, so we could view the original Declaration of Independence, Constitution, Bill of Rights, and Magna Carta. We also visited the International Spy Museum and later got caught up in a real life police chase on the way back to our apartment. This evening, we had dinner at Capitol City Brewing Company and then stopped in at Dolcezza Gelato and Coffee for an after-dinner treat.

Beautiful entrance at the National Gallery of Art

I loved doing Clay's art scavenger hunt with him!

Feeling the "amor" in the sculpture garden

Having a rockin' good time

The National Archives Building

Ninjas at the International Spy Museum

Salted caramel/Thai coconut milk gelato

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Day One in D.C.

We arrived in Washington D.C. late last night and spent today exploring. We walked along the National Mall and enjoyed seeing the capitol and many of the monuments. We also loved seeing the Library of Congress and the Supreme Court building. And, we had a chance encounter with Michael Pollan, author of "The Omnivore's Dilemma," which is a book several of us have read and enjoyed. We also spent time in the Air and Space Museum, the Conservatory, and the Sculpture Garden. We ended the day with our annual "Average Birthday Party," which we always celebrate at a Brazilian steakhouse on the average of all the November birthdays and half-birthdays. Technically, the party should have been yesterday, but it just wasn't possible with our travel schedule. It was an amazing day, and we are already looking forward to what tomorrow holds!

Kids at the Capitol

Looking down the Mall

The Reading Room in the Library of Congress

Perfect Picnic

Supreme Court Building

Michael Pollan pontificating at the capitol

Clay found a friend in the Conservatory

Checking out a model of an aircraft carrier in
the Air and Space Museum

Clay thoroughly enjoyed the Sculpture Garden

Washington Monument

A peek at the White House

Looking toward the Lincoln Memorial

What Max has been looking forward to the most

Average Birthday Party at Texas de Brazil