Monday, June 29, 2009

Summer Vacay!

Okay, okay, enough teasers. Here's the whole big long trip - but first - PROPS to Pat for putting up with all of my crazy ideas. My idea of vacation is exactly opposite of his, I like to go and do things and he likes to relax. But he got up really early and went to see all the sites without a complaint.

Pat and I started our vacation about two weeks ago when we flew into Washington DC. Pat had never been before and it's one of my favorite places to go so I was really excited to show him the sites. We are lucky because my sister Sarah and her husband John just bought a house so we could all stay with them. Thanks a bunch - your house looks awesome!

The first day we headed to the Smithsonium Museums. We checked out the Native American Museum (worth going in for about 10 minutes but no more), and the Museum of Natural History (always a winner). Somehow I accidentally sat on a large piece of amethyst, we determined it would really hurt if it fell on you! And of course, we went to the Air and Space Museum - you can't go to DC without going to the Air and Space Museum. Plus, when you go with Pat, you don't have to read the signs because Pat already knows the stories behind all the planes and rockets. We also took the time to drive out to the Udvar-Hazy Museum. It's the second air and space museum and it is awesome. We saw the spaceship Enterprise. It's huge. Just a few years ago it's sister ship disintegrated on re-entry so now there are only two working ships left and the one in the museum. We saw the Saturn V - the rocket the took the Apollo missions into space. It's gigantic. They also have the Enola Gay - the plane that dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.

They also have this cool simulator. You stand on a runway and fighter planes chase you down shooting at you. Pat did really well dodging all the bullets!

Prior to our trip I scheduled several tours of the buildings in DC. We went through the Library of Congress. It is an absolutely beautiful building on the inside. The Library of Congress basically holds every book ever written (that they can get their hands on). It has photographs, maps, playbills, all sorts of things. We saw the Guttenberg Bible and the very first map that had America labeled. As you all know, America is named after Amerigo Vespucci but there is some dispute over the name. We learned that the cartographer who made that map "mistakenly" put the feminine version of Amerigo, "America" because he was mad that it wasn't called Columbia or Christophaly after Christopher Columbus. This map got publish in so many places that by then, it was to late to fix the mistake!

We also toure
d the Bureau of Printing and Engraving and saw how money is made and learned that mom is $1,500,000 dollars tall. The final tour was the White House. This tour took a long time because the President came home while we were in line so the secret service had to clear people out. The White House was the tour I was most looking forward to because I remember it from when I was a little girl but it was kind of a let down this time. It's self-guided so, you only get to see four rooms and it takes an hour since people just stand in the room and don't move. No pictures of it...sorry - we're not aloud to take in cameras.

We also went to every monument on the mall. At the WWII Monument I wasn't thinking and I sat down in a big puddle of water. Well, it start
ed pouring monsoon like rain when we went to the Jefferson monument so we didn't go but we parked in the parking lot for a while.

We finished up in DC and continued with my parents to Havelock, NC. At this time we learned to never, ever, ever trust a TOM TOM navigation system. We nick-named the TOM TOM the DUMB DUMB. Despite the mishaps with navigation, we made it to Havelock. It is a quaint little town on the edge of the outer banks in NC. I loved going to the outer banks and collecting shells and wading in the water. There was even a fort for us to play in!

Mom lost her hat in the wind: Mom got her hat back: And we took a family p

We continued the drive to Charleston, SC. I absolutely loved the road trip. It brought back so many memories of my childhood and driving everywhere, visiting forts and seeing all kinds of sites. In Charleston, we walked along the harbor, looked at Fort Sumter - this is where the Civil War started, and saw an aircraft carrier. On the dock I thought I saw sharks. I was so excited I yelled it out and a man who was fishing for sharks just shook his head and said, those are porpoises. Just to make sure the man knew how smart we really were, Kathryn said, "Oh, porpois, like bug turtles." We all started cracking up at that comment.

The last of our trip was at Disney World. Around Disney World, they have all these places called picture spots. We thought it was great that they provided the nice signs for us to take pictures of. Disney World...their always thinking!

We had a blast going to all the parks. Pat and I went to Animal Kingdom and we recommend the Lion King show and the Expedition Everest ride. We also went to Magic Kingdom but Space Mountain is closed until November so the only major ride is Splash Mountain but I also recommend Mickey's Philharmagic. My favorite park was Hollywood Studios, this used to be MGM but Disney bought it. It is sooo cool. It's got Tower of Terror, the Aerosmith Rock 'n Rollercoaster and this really neat car show called Lights, Motors, Action. Then Pat and I went to Typhoon Lagoon - totally fun and a great break from all the lines at the major theme parks. We got to swim with sharks (not porpioses) and there was this massive wave pool that sent out 5 foot waves for you to catch.

All in all, we had a totally fantastic trip and we want to give a great big THANK-YOU to my mom and dad for taking us to Disney World!


Kathryn said...

I love the family pics. :) Except my immediate out-dating of them of course. ;)

Melanie Herway said...

What a great trip! You really packed it in...that's my kind of traveling too. I went on the Everest ride just about a month ago. Wow! I haven't been on a roller coaster in 5 years. I forgot how fun it is.

Katy said...

Looks like you guys had so much fun!

Jenny said...

Wow - looks like so much fun. I am the same about trips I like to plan them all out and do and see as many things as possible. Brad is a pretty good sport usually.