Mr. Linus Goes to Washington

Remember a few years ago when we visited Washington and accidentally hit the cherry blossoms just right? We hoped we could manage the same thing again this year. We booked our tickets a little on the late side, thinking the long snow would have delayed them. We were right, and in fact we were too early by at least a week. That’s OK. You’ll see that we made the best of it.

We arrived around noon, got settled, got some lunch, dealt with a mishap (I forgot to pack the Baby Bjorn, so now we also own an Ergobaby). Then we decided that we should dash out for a little walk before dinner. I had never been to Arlington Cemetery, so we headed there.

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The magnolias were just getting started, but this is really the most flowers we saw on the trip.

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We visited the JFK grave.

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And climbed all the way up to the old house for a view of the city.

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The next morning, we discovered that a lot of other people were also in town for the cherry blossoms, and now also needed something else to do because they weren’t ready. There was no chance of getting into the Air & Space Museum or any of the other big sites. We thought we might try the National Archive, but no one answered when I knocked.

National Archives

We found a huge line downstairs. It took us almost half an hour to get inside! Linus handled it in stride, enjoying a little second breakfast while he waited.

National Archives

He wasn’t interested in the National Archive after all. So after a quick visit, we grabbed a little lunch, and then headed to the Portrait Gallery. That was more to his liking.

National Gallery

National Gallery

National Gallery

He really loved this exhibit. Each state is made of televisions showing a show that takes place there (or represents it).

National Gallery

National Gallery

We took a break for a while and Linus stretched out. The security guards were quite taken with him. Someone probably could have pulled off a heist at that moment!

National Gallery

National Gallery

National Gallery

National Gallery

National Gallery

After the Gallery, we headed over to the Botanical Garden (which is actually a conservatory…). Linus really liked the fountains.

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Actually, he loved the whole Garden. We had a heck of a time keeping him from grabbing the plants.

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This exhibit was so neat. It is on the root systems of prairie grasses. Grasses like switchgrass have roots longer than 6 or 8 feet.

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Back at the hotel, Linus enjoyed some quality time with his reflection. This particular weekend was when he learned to crawl. He learned fast, and we learned faster that we can’t keep up with him.

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The next day, we met up with my old friend Ben Funk and his wife, Elana. They took us over to see Great Falls. We enjoyed the visit with every other person in the DC metro area, I think. You can’t blame them: it’s hard to resist going outside on a nice Easter Sunday.

If you look at the rocks on the left side of this photo, you’ll see a guy wearing green and black. He had just kayaked down the falls and was hiking back up to do it all over again.

Great Falls

We tried to get a nice family photo, but Linus saw some branches.

Great Falls

Here are those kayakers again.

Great Falls

Great Falls

Great Falls

Here’s Ben climbing out on a tree. Turns out he’s become a passionate climber. I don’t think I got a better photo of him than his. Sorry… Just remember how he looked in high school, and you’ve got it.

Great Falls

After a lovely lunch of Thai food in which Linus only spilled a little ice tea on himself, we went to the zoo. We saw all of the animals from Linus’s zoo book.

Who has a big furry mane and lets out a roar?

National Zoo

Who has a big toothy grin and swims in a swamp?

National Zoo

Who has large floppy ears and squirts water from its trunk?

National Zoo

National Zoo

National Zoo

National Zoo

National Zoo

After the zoo, we found that we had a little extra time before Air & Space was going to close, so we headed in.

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Here’s Linus as scale in front of the Saturn V rocket.

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I love this picture. They wanted people to take selfies in front of it, and provided a hashtag. Instead, I just put Linus down and let him explore the wall. I did tell him that he’s not allowed to be an astronaut. I want him to stay here on Earth with me.

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We had dinner that night at the restaurant at the top of our hotel. It’s one of those that spins around so you get a full view.

Doubletree Hotel Skydome Lounge

Linus and I made out a little bit before dinner. He is quite open with his affection.

Doubletree Hotel Skydome Lounge

Doubletree Hotel Skydome Lounge