Wednesday, March 25, 2015

United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Kevin and I finally went into DC for a date at the Holocaust Museum.
It was fun walking around DC with just kids constantly asking...
Are we done yet?
When is it time to go home?

We found a parking spot on Constitution Ave near Rainbow Pool.
We enjoyed a little walk to the museum taking in all the beautiful monuments and the fun activities that go on in the city on a Saturday morning.
Ball games of all kinds, bikers, runners, and yoga near the Washington Monument. 

Now is the season when the lines pick up again.

We got right it....No timed tickets needed.
Yet another perk to being in the military.

Kevin and I thought we had learned a lot about the holocaust in school.  
However, there was a lot we learned going through the exhibit that was new to us.

What was really amazing was the visuals!
Being inside one of the train cars, imagining all the people in one of the bunks, all the human hair the Nazis  cut and bagged up, and the room with all the shoes and the smell of them.

It was an intense experience!

 One quote from the Museum really stuck with me...

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out— 
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out— 
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
 ~ Martin Niemöller 

~ March 21, 2015 ~

National Museum of the Marine Corps


The Museum of the Marine corps is one cool museum!

The day was spent enjoying a special miniature train display,  learning about the history of the Marines, playing dress up, getting yelled at by our DI (Drill Instructor), and running out of the back of a CH-46 helicopter into battle in Vietnam.  

As we left, Lake Brantley High School marching band  was performing. 
They are a school from Florida, and had gotten rained out of performing in DC, 
so they ended up at Quantico...lucky us!
They played  the Star Spangled Banner and all the songs from the armed forces.  They ended their performance with "The U.S. Air Force" ....

OFF we go into the wild blue yonder...

Meeting real Marines...

That day at the museum they were celebrating women in the armed forces.  
The ladies had brought their gear to show the kids and let them try it on.
At first Izzy was the only one brave enough to try on the gear!

She is one tough girl...The gear is really heavy!
She rocked it with her Siamese kitty rain boots!

Ethan finally gave into our peer pressure and tried on the helmet(6 lbs) and combat vest(22 lbs).
When they put in the two side bullet plates it added 10 lbs per plate to the vest.
Imagine marching around with all that weight on. 

Ethan was trying to not let his head fall off his neck with the heavy helmet on.

Our two little Marines!

~ March 14, 2015 ~

Friday, March 13, 2015

Ashton's 6th Birthday

My baby boy is growing up so fast!

He loves going to school and playing with his brothers and sister more than anyone else.  He gives the sweetest hugs. When I kiss his cheek he takes his hand and rubs it.  I ask, "Are you wiping off my kiss?" His reply, "No...I'm rubbing it in!"
Oh this kid has a special place in my heart!

The cake was so yummy!
Ashton chose his cake and his siblings were not too excited...
Not enough frosting and candy I guess.

~ February 27, 2015 ~

Friday, March 6, 2015

We have the list...

On Friday, February 27th, 
We were given a list of all the Air Force bases that will have openings for dentists.  
We were told we have a week to narrow them down to 20 AF bases that we would like to move to.

On the left side of the page is the list of where we hope to go, in order from top to bottom.
The right are the ones we cut.

We call this our "wish list" because it it truly up to the Air Force!

Home is where the
Air Force
sends us.

While we were finalizing the list we were enjoying what might be the last big snow storm.
Even Kevin was able to have a snow day.

Snow Day Count To Date...

Kids- 10 days; 5 two hour delays
Kevin- 2 snow days; 3 two hour delays

These are pictures from the trail behind our house.

Winter animal visitors...

White-Tailed Deer 

They are frequent visitors. 

Coopers Hawk

One day I was walking through the kitchen and my eye caught this guy
hanging out in our backyard.

To the right of the hawk is a clump of leaves...
That is a squirrels nest.


This is just one of the beautiful birds that come to our bird feeder.
The Carolina Chickadee is one of our favorites, they are so cute.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Presidents Day at Mount Vernon

On Presidents Day they open Mount Vernon to the public for free.  Kevin wasn't able to go with us the last time so we went.  The temp that day was a freezing...10 degrees. It hurt just to take your gloves off to take a picture.  It did keep the crowds down and was still an awesome day trip.  They had many demonstrations in honor of President Washington. 
The colonial soldiers marching was my favorite.

Ice on the Potomac River

View of Fort Washington across the river

George Washington crossing the Delaware River...Remember the story?

After walking around Mount Vernon in the freezing cold temperatures it gave a us a new appreciation of the sacrifice that the soldiers had to make.

The story...
Washington decided to make a courageous move against the  Hessian garrison that was camped in Trenton. It was December 25, The Hessian soldiers were a set of fierce German fighters, fighting for the British. Being Christmas, they didn't expect anything would be coming.  
Washington knew only a surprise attack could beet this group.
A good number of the colonial men were in bad condition.  A lot went marching the 9 miles through the ice and snow without shoes and only bandages to cover their feet.  They said that they left a trail of blood in the snow behind them.
They won the battle and it reinvigorated the failing spirit of the Revolution. 
It became a real turning point of the war!

It is stories like these that farther deepen my appreciation of the men that fought and sacrificed so much for our independence. 

~ February 16, 2015 ~

Virginia Beach

We finally made it to the Atlantic Ocean!

On Friday, February 13, we jumped in the car as soon as Kevin got home and drove down the always jammed I-95 to VA Beach, Virginia.  We knew that this was not the time of the year to really enjoy the beach, but it is the time to see whales.  It is also the time of year to avoid the huge beach crowds...
We're all for that!

Valentines Day started with this great view from the hotel. 
We all had fun watching our first Atlantic coast sunrise.

Whale watching was first on the itinerary.  
The forecast was sunny but cold. We came prepared with coats, hats, gloves and blankets.

We were able to see a Humpback whale right at the beginning. 
It was fantastic boat ride!  

Cape Henry

This was a really fun stop.
Cape Henry is the first actual landing place of the English colonists in April 1607.
In 1781, Americans could watch from these same sand dunes the largest naval battle of the Revolutionary War.  Our French Allies defeated a British fleet just off this shore to set the stage for General George Washington's victory at Yorktown.

This national park is located on Fort Story, a military base.  This is one of those times when being military comes in handy! Going through the gate we had a car ahead of us.  They were taking quite a bit of time talking to the soldier...he had his weapon. I must add, from my own experience, that can be intimidating. They had to park for an inspection of their car.  We, on the other hand, drove up to the soldier.  Kevin gave him his military ID.  Kevin was quickly saluted and we were let in.

Cape Henry Lighthouses

This is the first lighthouse built in the US and the only one of the two you can explore.
The other is still being used.

Even the cold windy weather couldn't keep my kids out of the water.
They quickly had their feet wet, shoes and all.

Sunday the weather was so windy and cold we decided to head home.  We took the scenic route along the Rappahannock River. I love taking the little highways in this state...
Virginia is so beautiful everywhere you go!

~ February 14, 2015 ~