DC – Museums, Monuments, Memorials, Mammals and More – Oh and Don’t go in May!

DC – I loved it all! So much to do, so little time! I feel like a broken record, but it’s true.

The campground was nice and pretty. It was kind of far away, and there was not much to it at all, but for the price it was great! It was super tight though. I feel like we barely fit through there. I’m sure Huck covered the 5 different tries until we fit in a spot. And boy none of the sites were even close to being level. But we found one that worked.

Let’s cover the biggest down side…. The school groups. Not just a few, but hundreds of groups of kids everywhere! We didn’t really have a huge choice in the timing. I know that sounds weird, but there’s a lot of factors in the timing of our trip and you can only control so many…. If any. So, if you can help it, do NOT visit DC in May.

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DC on a shoestring

Most of our blog posts are just a recount of what we did and its primarily for our own memories….so if you read these, thank you and sorry if we bore you.  Today, however, we want to do what good bloggers do and provide some useful information to our readers.  In particular those who wants to travel to DC, with a family, in an RV and is a tight wad.  Is anyone still reading?  No?  Well, I’ll write this anyway.

Both Steph and I had been to Washington DC in our youths and we were excited to visit again but this time share it with our kiddos.  It seems like it should be the perfect place to visit for the budget traveler as all of the museums, memorials and monuments are free!!  But, its the other costs that get you; lodging and transportation being the biggest ticket items.  And while you can attempt to get everything in during a short visit we knew that it would probably take a full week to really see and experience things the way that suits us.  We had just about thrown in the towel and resigned to the fact that it was going to be an expensive week when I struck gold in the lodging department and Steph struck gold in the transportation/parking department!  Will these be real pay dirt, or just fools gold?!

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Tourism: The Lincoln Memorial and Wow! Baby Geese!

Before I begin I need to explain about the title. We did the normal DC things but Dacen and I also saw a lot of people taking pictures of baby geese and squirrels.

Bob: Wow we’re at the Washington Monument and there’s the perfect picture! Hey Mary scooch over… little more… there! Click! Wow that turned out great! Those goslings are lifelike. Now for the Lincoln Memorial. I wonder if I can get that squirrel in there… Read more

The National Zoo

The National Zoo  was sooooo fun!! Huck needed a work day and he doesn’t love zoos. I don’t blame him. I am a hypocrite because I oppose them on one level, but I LOVE seeing the animals! I do love that zoos can get people excited about animals and nature. You get to learn about the animals and when you see them up close it can really ignite a level of passion you can’t get from a book or computer/TV screen. So really I love sanctuaries that have rescued animals, rather than zoos that breed animals just for captivity. And I definitely prefer zoos that give animals lots of room to roam vs the ones that put them in small cages.

As for the National Zoo, we got a late start, it was quite a drive THRU downtown DC, in the Beast. I was really worried about finding and parking the Beast as everything (even the web site several times) states that the parking is very limited. Whew Parking was no problem at all. We were not sure if we would get rained on, so I warned the kids we would NOT be able to see everything. Except we did come quite close to seeing it all. And if I had been able to navigate the zoo better, we probably COULD have seen it all! Oh man did I mention the kids and I love animals? All animals! We of course knew that the pandas were top priority since we can’t see those in CO and the kids have never seen one in person. (I had seen them in China, but couldn’t wait to see them again!) When we first checked on the pandas the 9month old baby was up in a tree and you could barely see a little bit of cream fur. But the big ones are also so darn cute!!  I think we were able to go back to the pandas about 3 times because of the way we saw the zoo. And 3rd times a charm! We saw the cute little guy inside right up close and he was sooooo cute!

We also loved the birds and reptiles, lions, tigers, elephants, and more! The Fennec fox pups were sooo cute and playful and interactive. I loved seeing the kids laughing and playing with them. We loved the bird houses. It was fun to see up close some of the birds we had learned about and seen in Florida. We also saw quite a few mice running around. And these enclosures were set up so that we COULD have touched a lot of these (though you aren’t supposed to) so conceivably we could have had a mouse run across our foot. Ewww. That’s one animal I don’t love. The only disappointment was poor Dacen. We couldn’t see the ONE bear they had. He LOVES bears. Oh well – he saw the PANDA BEARS!!

Ring tailed lemur

Lemur lookers



Riding a seal

Caden staring down the seal

Seal likes Brielle's Bei Bei

Close enough to touch

Spoon bill

Lions lyin around

Lion s and crazy faces


Princess on a bear

Eating a bear

Brielle's Bei Bei

4 little monkeys

Oooo oo ahhha ahh

Przewalski's horses

Riding a bear



Riding a statue

Bao Bao


D with his stuffed panda

Brielle with her stuffed animal



Group shot

Elephant poo

Fennec foxes

DC was a success!!

Presidential debates

The night after we visited the capitol in DC one of the kids had the idea that they should all write presidential speeches.  I figured they’d go to bed and forget about it but they worked on them in bed and the next morning they wanted to present their speeches.  So, ladies and gentlemen, I welcome you to this forum of presidential nominees and invite you to consider the ideas spoken here when you cast your vote.

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