October 20: We spent the morning playing and having brunch with my friend Shawn and her family. It was a cold but sunny day and there were trucks and piles of leaves and pine needles to collect.
And there were bikes to ride.
And tools to fix the bikes.
In the evening, we went to dinner at another friend's house. I have been friends with Sarah since we were both babies, so seeing our baby girls (hers is 12 weeks old!) interact was amazing.
Natalie seemed to really like the attention.
Liam was curious about both Natalie and her chair's controls, of course.
October 21: Since the federal government was reopened (yay!), we went into the Smithsonian in the morning. We got there a bit early and got a great (free!) parking spot, so we killed a few minutes playing in the rocks
Poor Daddy. Brenna wasn't interested in hanging out with him with me around.
First we went to the Air & Space Museum. It wasn't actually as fun for the kids as I thought it would be. But, Liam did enjoy sitting in the seat of this plane.
Brenna couldn't wait for her turn.
And she was really happy once she got to sit too.
There were a few interactive exhibits, but they were a bit too complex for the kids.
Liam liked the scaffolding on the Washington Monument.
We took a snack break outside the Natural History Museum.
Unstaged photo op. They sat next to each other and eat their snack. And didn't fight.
Both kids liked the dinosaurs, but the gem exhibit was a bigger hit even.
Brenna kept walking up to each exhibit of sparkly rocks and gems and saying one of her new favorite words, "Whoa!". So cute.
October 22: We had a playdate at Mt. Vernon, but didn't get any pictures there. Around lunchtime, we went to a nearby park to play and eat.
Liam was "too busy!" to eat lunch right away, so he played with some girls that were there (of course). He climbed up this structure all by himself, even.
Brenna played after she had a little lunch. She won't sit still for long, though, when Liam is off playing these days.
Liam pretended to be a fireman.
And he handed out ice cream with "lots of flavors, a cone, and a cherry".
It was our last night of vacation and we met up with the cousins again. Of course, my camera lens broke so all we got were some sub-par phone pictures.
After dinner, the kids had a blast - again - playing together.
Hopefully it won't be another year and a half before we can get the cousins together again, they loved it so much.
October 23: Another travel day and no camera, but I did remember to snap a few phone pictures at the San Francisco airport. There was a bucket truck near our baggage carousel!
And the usual running around in circles. It was a good vacation, but I think everyone was pretty happy to come home, too.
October 24: Brian, Liam and Brenna got right back into the routine today. Liam went to school and Brian and Brenna took Ravioli out for a long walk to run some errands in the neighborhood. I took the day off and did a bunch of house errands (buying and picking up furniture and buying paint).
October 24: We got right back into our routine on the first day home. Liam went to school and the kids had a bath in their bathroom before bedtime.
Liam picked out the three bedtime stories that we read in Brenna's room all together.
And Brenna picked this book that she really likes.
There is a spider in it. Brenna always wants to do Eensy Weensy Spider when she sees a spider.
October 25: The day before, I picked up a play tent at Ikea (along with the parts to put together an awesome new table and storage boxes for the kids to use in the new great room). Both kids love it. Brenna brought me her sunglasses to put on and then played peek-a-boo with me in the holes of the tent.
Liam and Brian were sick overnight (food poisoning? stomach flu?) so Liam was feeling very tired. He wanted to be a firefighter and rest on the couch with covers and his nigh nigh.
That evening, we headed out to our local Mexican place for dinner. Brenna no longer wants to ride in her stroller, but prefers to walk and explore. She particularly likes to jump on grates.
Friend Matt came along. And he's made a friend out of Brenna now, too.
October 26: We had a slow morning, with Brian and Liam still feeling a bit tired. I stayed home with the kids while Brian went to the chiropractor.
Later, we took the kids out for a walk to the donut shop.
While Brenna went down for her nap, Liam and I headed out to get some more paints supplies. At the end of our block, there is a "broken building" that Liam wanted to fix with the tools in his bike basket. He got really tired a block into our walk, though, so we came home.
After naptime (where a very tired Liam decided to read for 3 hours instead of sleeping), we finally convinced Liam to head out to the local pumpkin patch. He loved the stray bale tunnel.
Brenna liked checking out the pumpkins.
But Liam was the one who picked out the seven pumpkins we ended up taking home (4 big, 3 mini).
We found out that Brenna does not like to sit in straw.
So this is the best photo op I got of the kids.
She was much happier checking out the turkeys.
She kept hopping and making chicken noises.
We had to drag Liam out of the tunnel when it was time to go. Sometimes it is still hard to leave when you are having so much fun.