Epic Road Trip (Day 5: August 28, 2016)

A 6lb Milkshake in Annapolis, MD
(click here for pictures)

Around 2 this morning, Graham was at my bedside saying that Keaton had taken his covers.  I didn’t look to see if she had actually taken the covers but just rolled over for him to climb in bed with us.  The bed was tiny and it was pretty warm in our room so those of us in the bed were hot.  I eventually made Graham move in the middle but we all still slept soundly.

We all went to breakfast this morning together but Robby had explained to everyone that we were just going to get 2 things each and not go back for more food.  After eating, Robby and Graham went to get a cart and to find the van.  We finished with breakfast and then the plan was for me to go back with the others to bring the cart down but since I didn’t have the key, we just headed to the street to wait.  Robby and Graham returned with the van and soon we were loaded up and heading to the zoo,

Robby had been to the National Zoo when he was in 7th grade but the kids and I have never been there.  We were able to find parking on the street, saving us 22 dollars.  We only had about 2 blocks to walk to the front of the zoo.  It is a big and shady zoo.  Our first few animal stops were a disappointment since the animals weren’t there.  But soon we started seeing a few different animals.  

We saw a Red Panda and then we finally found the animals that we had been waiting for: the Giant Pandas. We saw at least 3 of them and they were indeed pretty cute.  At one point, we did stop so we could see the otters being fed and we pretty quickly realized that we weren’t in the South anymore.  Those big ole tall people pushed their way up to the front and the poor little kids were left in the back to look at people’s hineys.  My kids didn’t really care so off we went to see something else.  We viewed quite a few elephants from a bridge-the elephant habitat is about 6 times the one at home.  

We viewed a spotted leopard and then walked down a very large hill and saw some seals and sea lions.  They were pretty impressive and I could have watched them for a good while.  Now when we were viewing these things, all I could think of was that we were at the very bottom of the 8/10th of a mile hill and then had to walk right back up it.  Eeek!  We kept on the path and realized that we were walking up the hill while seeing some animals-possibly a short cut.

Eventually, our shortcut ended and we were back on the main hilly path.  Robby had bought us popcorn and a lemon icee on the way down, so we knew that we weren’t going to get anything on the way up.  The kids huffed and puffed-probably since we were making them push the strollers.  Poor Keaton even had to walk a good bit up the hill.  I was just thinking about sitting down and crying in the middle of the hill when I looked over and saw the visitor center, where I had entered when we walked into the zoo looking for a map ($5-I passed)  I knew we were there and so did Robby because he was up ahead telling the kids that he saw a 7-11 across the street.

Despite the mouse crawling around on the sidewalk out front, we all still went in and retrieve our slushies.  They were the best things ever.  From there is was just a short skip and a hop to our car.  We hung out in the grass until the car cooled off and then we headed back to the National Mall.  We found a pretty good parking spot-Robby’s parallel parking skills are improving and as of right now, I do not think that we have been honked at once in this trip.  

Once we parked, I climbed in the back and started making our sandwiches and tortillas.  The kids are kind of funny since they eat the same thing every day even when we have quite a few options but I guess that Robby and I have been eating the same thing each day too.  After we ate, we walked over to the Air and Space Smithsonian-it is one that we could go to each year.  We spent quite a bit of time in the hands on section about flight.  

Keaton and Reagan found a presentation and sat down to listen to it.  I am usually not a presentation person but Reagan came up to me and said that it was really interesting. So I went and sat with them along with Whitman. As we walked up the presenter had just twisted a twirly thing and it bounced off Keaton’s head so she was loving it.  Graham, Whitman and I had been there for just a bit when the presenter had Graham come up to help him with a presentation.  

The presenter was really good and would ask questions.  When he did ask questions, Whitman would of course answer with something.  Now, a few times he answered wonderfully correctly but other times, he would just say a random word but the presenter would take what he said and make Whitman’s answer seem correct.  Soon Reagan was up demonstrating pitch, yaw and roll.  After we finished listening to the little show, we walked around to a few other exhibits and even saw the original Wright Brother’s plane.  The kids really enjoyed spending the last few minutes of their Smithsonian time at the gift shop.  Keaton gets mad at me each time that I won’t let her buy something-she probably doesn’t need a Hello Kitty in a spacesuit or a 5 foot kite.  Graham had bought a hat but wants another one even though he only has 4 more dollars to spend and my Reagan has only bought 3 pencils!  After we finished in there, we went out to the National Mall for one last look at the Washington Monument before leaving the city and heading to Annapolis.

We found a spot to park and walked just a bit to check out the little place that Robby had found for us to eat. When we walked up, I remembered that I had seen the same place but when I did my trip activity finding, I didn’t think that we would be in Annapolis near supper time.  We ate at Chick and Ruth’s Delly.  The place was small, small but they said we would only have to wait 5 minutes so we hung out on the sidewalk while Whitman slept.  

Once they sat us inside, we quickly found what we wanted to order-a jumbo crab cake, a 1 and half pound burger and a 6 pound cookies and cream milkshake.  That was definitely enough for us-the burger was okay but nothing special.  The crab cake was delicious and of course, we all loved the milkshake.  Whitman had been sleeping and he woke up just before they delivered the milkshake to us.  His eyes got big and he said over and over again, “It’s so big, it’s so big.”  The kids took turns passing it around-the milkshake may be been 6 pounds but the glass weighed at least that much. I was a nervous wreck the entire time afraid that we were going to spill that glass-if we had, we would have spilled that milkshake on 4 other people since we were packed in that restaurant like sardines.

We drank every bit of that milkshake and had pretty full tummies.  So we had to walk it off and strolled down around the waterfront.  It was so neat walking along the dock looking out at all of the boats.  The evening was pretty pleasant and Reagan even commented, “This is just like Disney World but without the rides.”  It was just that perfect.

After a good stroll, we ended up at the Naval Academy.  The boys certainly enjoyed that picture stop and from there we weren’t too far from the car.  We were about 10 minutes from our hotel and quickly found our way there. This is another Holiday Inn Express so we unloaded and started on showers.  Robby checked on the laundry and since it is free here, how could we pass it up!  We ended the evening with watching the next National Treasure movie.

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