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One last stop before we go...

sunny 85 °F

My husband had some work meetings in DC, which meant that the girls and I could pile in the car and stay in his hotel room. I hesitated at first because we'd get back from this short trip only to do laundry and pack for our big trip, but I decided that I didn't want to pass up the chance to see one of my besties, so off we went. Packing was actually a nice sort of dress rehearsal for the bigger trip.

We had only one full day in DC, but we made the most of it. Our first stop was at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian. I chose it for two main reasons: 1) I have heard great things about the café (more on that later) and 2) there is a kid section. We walked a little through the regular exhibits but spent over an hour in ImagiNATIONS, the kid section.
When you enter the section, you get a passport that you can stamp after every activity, which motivated my girls to check everything out. Their favorite activities were a kayak balancing activity skateboard simulation game (yes, skateboards have native Hawaiian heritage! I had member stopped to think about that before, but the native Hawaiians brought us the surfboard, and the skateboard was invented as a street surfboard). We were also there for a story time activity and stopped at some (all ages) carts to see a beadwork demo and different uses of buffalo horn. We had a great visit, and I appreciated the calmer vibe at this less crowded museum.

After lunch, it was on to on a Smithsonian museum that gets many more visitors: American History. I thought to come here because of an exhibit on educational television that might be fun for the girls, but we never found it. Instead we saw the First Ladies exhibit and stopped at an interpretive cart on the role of animals in WWI. Both girls enjoyed it, especially DD1, who is a fan of Sgt. Stubby. From there we had to find Sgt. Stubby in the larger war exhibit.

Next we met up with my friend and her family. We found ourselves with extra time before our dinner reservation, so we stopped by the National Portrait Gallery. By this time, DD2 was veering into meltdown mode because we had skipped nap, so we only saw the new Obama portraits and a couple of other ones nearby them and headed for dinner. Again, this was a good preparation for the larger trip, because we might have some nap-free days. DD2's mood also improved when I let her snap some pics of Michelle Obama and LL Cool J.
You'd think that our long day would have set the stage for sleeping in, but DD2 woke up her sister at 5:40 the next morning. Sigh. We got ready for the day, packed up, and took the metro to my friend's place to hang out while DH finished his meetings. We made it home this evening. It was a quick trip, and I am tired as I write this, but I am really happy we went!

Posted by amikulski 18:50 Archived in USA Tagged children museums washington

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