Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The rest of our vacation......

So, Wednesday we began the next installment of our Bennett Family Vacation Summer 2009. We drove to Canaan Valley to go horseback riding again because the kids loved it so much. Let me just say, though, that I am done - finished- retired from horseback riding. I think it's great for about 30 minutes, but anything after that is pure torture. ( at least on the mountain/hill trails) We had to do the 1 1/2 hr ride this time because the hour long ride was full. It ended up being 2 hours, not to mention the fact that they got started late and we didn't begin our ride until an hour after our scheduled time. So, we didn't finish until 1:00 when our ride was scheduled from 10:00 - 11:30am. But, the great thing about vacation is that I insist that we do things on our own time, no hurry, no "we've gotta be there by....." because that's when Mommy gets cranky about running late and I can't enjoy things as much. We went to have lunch at this great cafe that's in the mountains and then continued onto Washington DC. We stayed with my aunt and uncle who live in Silver Spring, which is like 10 minutes from DC and 5 minutes from the temple. We visited the temple Wednesday evening after eating dinner with our relatives. Brad and I took turns going in to do work while the other stayed out with the kids. Our girls were so excited to visit the temple grounds. They were singing " I Love to See the Temple" on the way into DC, and when we got there they were actually quiet and reverent. I took them through the visitor's center and walked around the grounds with them. Brad let them watch a movie while I was in the temple. It was very special that we got to include this into our vacation.

The next day we drove to the National Zoo and walked all over to visit the animals there. It was HOT! We love to go to this zoo because it's free and they always have panda bears. There was a baby named Tai Tai. When we left the zoo we ended up having some bad MapQuest directions and spent about an hour driving around in downtown DC. What an adventure! Once again, no worries, we had no place to be so we pointed out the monuments, memorials, museums, the Capital and the White House to Bethany while Mallory napped. Eventually my uncle was able to guide us out of DC over the phone. Whew!

Our last day we decided to take the Metro to the Mall and visit the Natural History Museum (Smithsonian). The girls love "Rexie", the dinosaur from the Night at the Museum movies, so they spent a lot of time in the dinosaur area. We visited lots of the animal exhibits and then they were ready to leave, and were quite excited to ride the "train" again. It was a short visit, but just long enough for our family, I think. We got out of the area before rush hour and were home before 5:30 that evening.

Brad said more than once that this was a favorite vacation for him because it was so relaxing. Sometimes when we go away for a whole week, we get overloaded with too many things to do and see. And not only was this laid back, but very inexpensive. When our kids get older we'll spend a lot more time in DC visiting more of the Smithsonian buildings and the other attractions, all free. If you haven't done this with your family, think about it. Many of us are lucky to live in the Eastern states where we can easily visit the capital city.

We still had the weekend which included the "Dive into Back to School" activity at Bethany's school where we met her teacher for 1st grade, and then Bethany and I had a Mommy/Daughter Date when we went to the spa together for pedicures. She also got a manicure, and was so excited about it. She chose a different color for her toes than her hands and had sparkles put over top of the color. She also had her glass of iced water and plate of fruit, cheese, and crackers. It was adorable. I just watched her the whole time when I was supposed to be relaxing to enjoy my own pedicure. It was great! (The only rough part was that I was fighting off some kind of virus from Thursday evening through Monday with a very sore throat and a fever and achy-ness. I rested Saturday evening and Sunday, and am much better now.)


Krissy said...

How fun! I would have loved that if I were a kid(or even now.) Glad you guys were able to have a little vacation together.

Bonna Keckley said...

D.C. can be so much fun and I love how most things are free. What a great idea to take your vacation there!

David said...
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deana said...

I love the pictures of the girls in front of the temple. What a great vacation for your family. Maybe someday we can go to D.C. as a family. Melanie's homeroom class will be going in March. I plan to go with them.
Bethany is miss thing with her toes painted and her cute skirt ready for the first day of school.