I did make it back from DC without losing any fingers or toes to frostbite. It was pretty cold, with a wind blowing most of the time. But the kids were fantastic and the parents even were good, so it was a great trip!
We did accomplish everything planned for Wednesday (see below), pretty much on schedule for once. Thursday morning we got up and headed down the street to Starbucks for a pumpkin spice latte (yum!!). The hotel was in Chinatown, which was a first for us, but a neat cultural experience and not at all scary.
Thursday's stops included World War II memorial (1 of my faves), Air & Space museum (not such a favorite), White House picture stop, and freaking freezing Arlington cemetery. The only thing that got me up that hill in the wind and 30 degrees was the thought of those cutie cute guards at the tomb of the unknown soldier. Dinner was Pentagon City mall, but us teachers snuck across the street for mexican at Chevy's. I had a dee-licious shrimp and crab quesadilla (another yum!!).
Friday started with more pumpkin spice latte. Seriously, I could live anywhere if I had Starbucks 2 blocks away. Our 1st stop was supposed to be the Washington monument, but the elevator was broken. No one was too excited about going up in it after hearing that news so we trekked across the street to the American History museum. This was the opening day after 2 years of being closed for renovations, and as we walked up we could hear the ribbon cutting ceremony going on outside. Imagine our surprise as they introduced the next speaker, Colin Powell. I dont' care who you support, it was pretty neat for a bunch of 5th graders from the country to see him live and in person! After he read the Gettysburg Address (which I just read with my 5th graders a couple of weeks ago), they cut the ribbon and we were among the first 1812 people inside so we got a cute little smithsonian bag thingie.
After american history we went next door to Natural History, ate a horribly overpriced lunch, and then went across the street to the National Archives. Seeing the original Declaration of Independence and Constitution is a big deal when you're 10.
After that we got on the bus and headed back to NC. Seven hours and 3 movies later, we were home. I was pretty exhausted but glad they let me tag along. This was my first year going without my own class- I rode along with the teacher who took my place last year and her class, who adopted me like I was theirs and they were mine. It was nice to feel a little less stress, pressure, and responsibility- definitely a good trip!
Now I'm looking forward to a 2 day school week and then 5 days off for Thanksgiving!!!