We were very lucky to have warm sunny weather for our trip. We hit a bunch of the DC highlights on foot- obviously the White House, the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial (a family favorite), the Capital Building, several Smithsonian museums including Air and Space, Union Station, the World War II and Vietnam War memorials, an ice cream cart, and half of the public restrooms in town.
In my opinion, it's true; hope won. Here's how I know. After a long day of touring the city with three kids who each had strong opinions and desires, I was hot, tired, sticky, and edging towards grumpy. At dinner, I ordered a cocktail, and the waitress asked for proof of my age. God bless America!
From DC, we headed to West Virginia which is about as pretty a place as you can imagine. It was especially beautiful to us as spring has taken hold there a bit more than it has here in northern New Jersey. While there visiting relatives, we went underground to tour natural caves full of stalagmites and stalactites. It was awesome. It called to mind Harry's first trip to Gringotts with Hagrid and enhanced the way we imagine Bilbo Baggins' adventures. My photo does not do the experience justice.
Our final bit of tourism was a trip to the Civil War battlefield at Antietam. Despite the fact that I look like a college student to waitresses in DC, I went to college a long, long time ago and cannot remember as much as I would like to from the Civil War and Reconstruction course I took. The trip inspired me to pick up a book on the topic.
We listened to about five hours of the second Mysterious Benedict Society book as we drove, and it was a hit with the entire car. It was a great trip, but as always, it's nice to be back home!