We've been out in Washington, DC for a few days now, and it wasn't until a day or so into it that we realized how badly we needed a vacation. Just spending time together as a family, doing new and different things, has been incredibly fulfilling for all three of us (turns out that toddlers need vacations too!), despite obligations and various things that we've been doing. It's a lesson that we need to keep in mind.

We've also been amazed at how toddler-friendly everything and everyone has been. We'll save the "educational" things (museums, White House, monuments, etc.) until Beatrix is older, but other activities are right up her alley. We spent the morning at the National Zoo with some of my secret online friends, and had a wonderful time. We also spent almost two hours at the National Building Museum, which has a great kids play area. We spent a beautiful afternoon walking around historic Leesburg, and another in Tauxemont, which is a very interesting planned community just south of Alexandria.

Beatrix has even been good in restaurants, which, for those who know her, is no small feat! The trick seems to be to spend no more than 60-90 minutes there and to keep her entertained, but DC-area restaurants seem to be very child friendly. We had great pizza at 2 Amys, a lovely dinner last night with friends and their 14-month old at Busboys and Poets (it seemed way too cool for school when we walked in, but they were incredibly gracious with the kids), and just got back from a morning at Cosi, my favorite coffee chain ever.

So busy as it's been, which I suppose is pretty typical for our lives, it's also been incredibly rewarding to be here. If you've been putting off a vacation, I would highly recommend you to re-prioritize it — it's made a world of difference.


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