Family · Homeschooling

Malls, Museums, and Memories

Last week my sister and her family came up to DC with friends for a grand field trip including a hotel stay and all the American History sights you could possibly fit in during a weekend.

On the way home, they stayed the night at our house and we went to the National Air & Space Museum in Chantilly, VA.  It was our first time there and we enjoyed it so much. Before I show you some pictures, though, I have to include a couple of the pre-museum festivities with the cousins.

First, there were manicures.  Then there was some shopping at the mall.

Now, this is my first experience witnessing Mini play Mall. MALL, that’s what she called it!  Oh my word. She and my niece had a big time taking EVERY article of clothing off the rod in the closet and hanging them up on the crib rail (yep, it’s still there.  doesn’t it make a great clothing rack?)

All the sudden Mini was not a brand-new 3 year old anymore.  She was a tween!

And now for the museum pics.  (How’s that for a segue?)

We met some of Valerie’s friends from North Carolina on their way home, too.  This museum is a kid-favorite and is enormous.  Plus it has a McDonald’s so there’s that.  Our sad little sandwiches in the car didn’t stand a chance to be eaten.  Oh well.

There are some amazing planes to see up-close and I learned a lot about American history during the guided tour. Our guide was super knowledgeable, but I have to be honest.  I couldn’t stick with him for long.  Slow talker.  Lots of facts.  Gotta go.

Max and I wandered around a bit.  We stumbled upon something in another room that interested us.

Woah, the space shuttle (Enterprise) was huge.  Though it was only used in training and never flew in space, just imagining what this shuttle is capable of doing was nothing less than exciting.  Max and I are learning about space right now so this field trip was good timing for us!

My sister and two oldest nieces (and Valerie’s friends’ daughter, pictured on the left) slid out of the tour, as well.

Mike stayed with the tour (Nerd!) but when he joined me in the Space section he told me there was a somethin-er-other from Orbital, the company that gave him his start in engineering after college.  Though he didn’t work on the project, it was still cool to see that familiar logo at the museum.  Of course I wanted to take a picture.  After the obligatory goofy mean looks he gave me, he cracked himself up and I got one of him smiling big.

Back in the day (I’m making him sound old!) Mike worked in aerospace for many years.  He played a part in designing software used on the laser guided bomb on the F-14, which was right there at the museum.  Another cool photo opportunity.

If you’re ever in the DC area, a visit to this museum would be a great starting point or ending point to your trip (since it’s outside the city, next to Dulles Airport).  Speaking of Dulles, Mike worked there too a long time ago as an intern in college.  I’m glad he took the day off and joined us for this field trip, it ended up being a nice walk down Memory Lane for us.

And it was really nice to spend a couple of days with our nieces and nephew!


3 thoughts on “Malls, Museums, and Memories

  1. Glad y’all had such a fun visit–especially the cousins. Mini’s *mall* game–and result in her room–made me smile. But she’s not allowed to act tweeny yet!! 🙂

    “slow talker, lots of facts, gotta go.” Oh you are funny!

  2. Wow, designing software for laser-guided F-14 bombs? That’s like the coolest job ever! Next to my accounting job, of course. 😉

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