Baby Gorillas and The First Microwave

The presence of the Smithsonian might be my favorite part about living here in DC. The Smithsonian includes 19 museums, galleries, gardens and the zoo. Nineteen! And none of them have an admission fee! I have been gleefully working my way through all of these sites—so far, we’ve checked out the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, the National Zoo (twice now), the Museum of Natural History and the Museum of the American Indian, and this past weekend we hit up the zoo for a third time and made a trip to the Museum of American History, one I had been eager to attend. Continue reading

Narwhals: The Elusive Unicorns of the Sea

While we were living in Hoboken, we got a good amount of invitations over the years to alumni events sponsored by Trinity College, our alma mater. However, I never found any particularly interesting, or worth the often high price tag. So I was excited when, just a few months after moving the D.C. area, I received an invite for an event I immediately wanted to attend: a tour of the exhibit on narwhals at the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History. Continue reading

Broken Treaties, Grass Bridges and Headdresses Everywhere

This past Sunday was the chillier of the two days of my family visit, so we decided to go into D.C. and check out one of the many wonderful free museums—the National Museum of the American Indian. As we were walking from the parking garage to the museum, we noticed long lines outside some of the more well-known museums and hoped that wouldn’t be the case at our destination. It wasn’t; there was only a quick line to get through security. However, now having been there I can say that there should have been a longer line, because this museum was truly wonderful. Continue reading

Sea Monsters and Shiny Rocks

Over the weekend, we took our first trip to the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History.  We went to the American Museum of Natural History in New York quite a few times while living up there, so I was eager to see how this one compared. My verdict: The Smithsonian museum seemed a little smaller, but also a little more technologically advanced than the one in New York, making it a little less overwhelming and a bit easier to enjoy. Continue reading

My First Christmas Vacation in 5 Years

The last time I had an actual “Christmas vacation” was my last year of college, in 2012. Since then, I’ve learned that when you’re working full time it can be tough to truly enjoy the holidays. You can carefully lay out travel plans that seem like they’ll work in theory, but you can never truly account for weather, crowds and the like. A couple years ago I tried flying on Christmas Eve, and I was in the airport for around 6 hours, in a terminal with no heat,  before I even got on the plane. So needless to say, I was looking forward to this year Continue reading