Boston Revisited

On 7/24 we left Maine for a few days on the water in Boston. We traveled through the Minuteman National Park on the way to Boston.

Henry at the Minuteman National Historical Park

The USS Constitution museum has an amazing gallery about what it would be like to live aboard like a soldier. The boys are trying to balance on a rope while they tie up the sail. Another boy is swinging it as if it were in the wind. This was not easy!

USS Constitution
Old North Church

I absolutely fell in love with Boston. There are so many piers and docks for boats, there are many people who live aboard! Boston skyline view from our boat.

Our adorable little engine-less boat! You can see Henry steering the ship.

The boys playing on the deck in the morning and started freaking out. I ran upstairs and sure enough, a HUGE barge was passing very close to our boat. It was so cool.

They are doing a little maintenance on the Bunker Hill monument. I love how it looks like the Freedom Trail is running all the way up to the top.

Another amazing museum. A great presentation on the battle of Bunker Hill.

Oh look!! We found John Hancock.

More from Maine

The highlight of our time in Maine was spending our time with the Pollaros.

No trip to the beach is complete without a trip to the candy store to watch the taffy pulling machines.

And picking some stuff to take home!

Dear Dentist, your welcome.

Colin was begging for Panda Express all week so one day we took the 80 mile round trip to Portland. He was very happy : )

Maine, it’s everything you’ve ever imagined. Wonderful.

I found this spot on the hammock where I can borrow the neighbors wifi. I’m enjoying watching a squirrel rob the bird feeder. The birds here are so beautiful! The ants are annoying.

I’m loving being able to spend quality time with my dear friend Lisa and her kids. The kids are getting along so well and we are so happy to be able to relax for a moment. Maine is awesome!

Catch and release, catch and release. I love to eat fish, but I just can’t bring myself to… you know.


We loved the “Once Upon A Nation” storytelling adventure in Pennsylvania. We had a chance to sit on benches and hear amazing stories from pro story-tellers. Philadelphia was fantastic. There is an awesome indoor market which was close to our hotel and had the name of a monopoly property (Reading.) We had take-out dinner there twice. We missed hooking up with my dear cousin Anna who lives nearby, so happy we will see her in Utah in a few weeks : )

Independence Hall

Everyone gets a chance to pose by the Liberty Bell

Posing with what we want from the Gift Shop is almost as good as getting it.

Valley Forge

Today visited Valley Forge and I left with a completely different picture of history. It was a great side trip, the kids were so happy with all the open area & the people in costume.

Did you know that Valley Forge was actually quite comfortable for the soldiers? There was a lot of death due to disease and infection. There were no battles fought at Valley Forge.

Guns firing! That was the highlight of the day.

Each soldier got a loaf of bread a day, among other rations

The British are coming!

On the bus from Valley Forge to Philadelphia

Tomorrow… Liberty Bell : )

Mt. Vernon

I am so touched by the stories of George Washington. This journey to Mt. Vernon was an amazing treat. The history is incredible, we got here early enough to avoid the crowds, and we had the chance to wander around the property in peace.

A month or more ago, Henry came home from school and declared that he didn’t like George Washington because he had slaves. Since then I’ve been very sensitive to his opinion, it wasn’t anything I was exposed to as a 2nd grader. I was happy to see that the expo at Mt. Vernon doesn’t let Washington off the hook. In fact, they say he was brave enough to fight the revolutionary war (bullets, death, treason) and yet he wasn’t brave enough to face his fellow slave owners in Virgina.

I learned a lot. I hope my kids did.

Henry didn’t forget to wear his team Spain soccer shirt on this important day : )

George & Martha, Martha & George

On the road to Philadelphia

Goodbye Sun, Hello Rain

We woke up Saturday to pouring rain. We went to the hotel gift shop in search of an umbrella with little luck until Colin pointed to a table with two small umbrellas, we picked them up and immediately a woman asked us where we found them. We got lucky! We waded through the water to get to our Capitol tour. I can’t believe how much has changed in two years. There is an amazing new Capitol Visitors Center. The tour guides are on mic and everyone has earphones. The tour is short. We all agreed that The Capitol is much more interesting (as a tour/building) than The Pentagon.

Stepping into the Capitol Rotunda

Every state has two statues of prominent figures from their state. We found one of ours! Where is Philo?

After the Capitol we headed to The Museum of American History

Wahoo! A reference to home : )
but this was the end of any energy for museums.

So we played with squirrels.

We took an evening tour of the monuments & memorials by pedi-taxi. I highly recommend this! Our Pedi-cab driver had a degree in history and was in the process of joining the Marines. He gave us an amazing tour of the monuments and memorials. The boys LOVED it.




The White House
(I can safely say that the tour is over now)

Monuments, Museums, Metro, oh My

Thursday morning we walked the mile from our hotel to the Washington Monument in the hottest, wettest summer day ever. Colin was a bit nervous to go up the monument, but loved it once we got up there. I had no idea that the entire interior of the monument is full of plaques sent by each state and some countries in honor of Washington. Someday I would love to get a backstage pass to walk up the stairs and see all of that history.

We spent the rest of the day at the Museum of Natural History and the Air and Space Museum. Colin was grossed out by the former, both boys LOVED the latter. We had lunch at the craziest McDonalds I have ever seen. *disclaimer* McDonalds was the only place to eat at the Air and Space Museum. When we had our fill of The Smithsonian our legs and feet were killing us. We walked out of the museum and were so lucky to come across a pedi-taxi who gave us a ride back to our hotel. I think that was the highlight for the boys!

Friday we woke up early to get to our tour of The Pentagon. It was our first try at the Metro and we learned (after Colin went through the gate) that each person needed their own card. The Pentagon was like a tour through any office building. The highlight was when we went through the courtyard and the tour guide told a story that during the Cold War the Russians had satellite photos of The Pentagon that showed a lot of activity in the building in the middle of the courtyard. They were convinced that there must be a secret bunker beneath the building. It was believed that The Russians had nukes pointed right at that hot dog stand, therefore it became known as “The Most Dangerous Hot Dog Stand in the world.” Ha ha, funny enough. Then at lunch I was asking the kids about what they thought about the tour and they remembered “The Most Dangerous Hot Dog Stand in the world” but NOTHING about why! After a 20 minute discussion about why, I’m not sure they get it.

After The Pentagon we spent a couple of hours at The Spy Museum. No Photography allowed. It was fun, but the kids were distracted and bored.

The National Building Museum is having a special exhibit about an architect who has re-created amazing buildings in Legos. The buildings are not glued together and the creator “free designs” which means he doesn’t even use pen and paper to figure out how to put these together, he just keeps re-building until they are right.

I was mesmerized by the professional creations. The boys loved building their own creations best.

We Love Riding Trains

We caught the Amtrak regional from NYC to DC this morning. We were lucky we were at the end of the line, one of the Amtrak employees lead a group of us down a back escalator (side story, this is SCARY!! trusting your 8 and 9 year olds to be able to control their suitcases on the way down an escalator) and onto the back of the train very quickly. We were warned that every seat was going to be filled but we were in the warmest car in the line so we had tons of space to ourselves. The kids loved the freedom and space, I loved watching the countryside.

I checked the distance between Union Station and our hotel before leaving New York and could tell it was too close to justify a taxi ride. The boys bucked up and we walked the .3 miles to the hotel with a couple of stops to chase squirrels. As you can guess, bed jumping commenced the moment the argument over the key card ended.

Highlights of the day include; playing in the water at the Taft Monument, discovering Columbia Heights and accidentally running into a Panda Express (Colin has been begging for orange chicken for days.) Low light, perhaps our whiniest day yet.