The Family

The Family

Saturday, April 18, 2015

More Than Trees

Our recent trip to Washington DC included a bit more than Cherry Blossoms.

For instance:

Eating at my favorite restaurant in DuPont Circle: Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe

Taking Selfies While We Wait on the Food to Arrive

Doing a Happy Dance in Our Penthouse Suite - Either they were giving these away randomly or I looked so pitiful when we checked in after an 11 hour drive the folks at the front desk decided to help a momma out            
Enjoying all the perks that come with an entire lounge located on the penthouse floor - who knew?

Spending an afternoon at the Air and Space Museum

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

On a Whim

Last Tuesday one of my students was talking about her weekend in her hometown. She's from DC and mentioned that the Cherry Blossoms were supposed to be in full bloom within a few days.

For three years I'd been telling myself that we were going to find ourselves in DC just to see the Cherry Blossoms. I thought and thought, and checked the price on flights and hotels, and decided to do it. While tickets for a flight turned out to be too expensive, driving was certainly an option.

So on Friday morning the children and I set off on our grand adventure to see the Cherry Blossoms in DC!

We were not disappointed.

It was absolutely breathtaking. The only surprise was how white the blossoms looked. When you got closer you could see the pink hues, but all in a group, like in the picture above with the sun shining down, they appeared as white blossoms.

I'm so glad we didn't wait. I was going back and forth between last weekend and this upcoming weekend, but when we returned home last night I checked to see what the report was on the blossoms and the foliage was already falling off because of rain and wind. It would have been a total bust for us, especially considering the drive, if we would have waited.

Speaking of the drive, it took two days to get there and two days to get back. It was 11 hours, so with me alone in a car with two children, I knew not to push it.

There were times I got a bit nervous thinking how far we were traveling from home without my husband. I'm not sure I'd do it again anytime soon, but we enjoyed every minute. Well, almost every minute. There were still moments of sibling strife and an occasional meltdown, but on the whole, things went well.

The kids did fantastic in the car. We listened to the first three Lemony Snicket series audiobooks. They watched DVDs. We listened to music and Veggie Tales cds.

It was when we stopped for breaks at random rest stops that the wildness could not be tamed. And who can blame them? It was a long ride.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

My First Podcast

Three week's ago was the first time I ever listened to a podcast.


Of course I would be listening to one about reading.

The title of the podcast, "Read-Aloud Revival," is all about reading good books and reading them with your children, of all ages, aloud.

While the host and the conversations she's had so far are all related to people that homeschool, the idea of reading aloud isn't confined to just homeschoolers.

I've yet to get through a podcast uninterrupted. It's more like I get to listen to snippets at a time during the day, pause, then play again when I have a spare minute or two.

I've listened to the first three podcasts and each time I glean insights about good books. We're even going to try our first audio books on an impromptu road trip the children and I will be taking this weekend.

The most valuable lesson thus far has been the encouragement to keep reading aloud because of the the memories made through hearing a story spoken.