We had a great vacation in Philadelphia visiting my sister's family. Here's a quick look at our trip.
The first day we went to Valley Forge and Arnold's Family Fun Center. Valley Forge was impressive to Lyndol and me. The size of the place was surprising to me. For some reason I had imagined Valley Forge to be a small fort, but it is acres and acres of ground camped on and held by the colonial troops. Lyndol and I would like to take an adults only trip up there sometime. The children had more fun at Arnold's, which is no surprise, but I do hope that one day they will appreciate their visit to this piece of American history.
The next day we went to historical Philadelphia. This was on the 3rd, so that we avoided the crowd on the 4th. The kids were able to experiment with a printing press, make crafts, and ride the carousel in Franklin Square. There were several locations around historical Philadelphia and at Valley Forge where they had storytellers sharing pieces of history in a kid friendly fashion. We all enjoyed the wonderful talents of the Once Upon A Nation writers and storytellers. We went to the Constitution Center, the Betsy Ross House, and Franklin Square. Lyndol went to Ben Franklin's grave. We had done Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell on a previous trip, so we bypassed those.
On the 4th, we watched the parade in Lansdowne. That is the community where my sister's family lives. They had a fire eater, period costumes, antique cars and bicycles and lots of candy. After the parade, we walked back to the house and did a family photo shoot. We spent the afternoon with the little ones catching up on sleep, and the older ones playing Catan, Cities and Knights. Then we walked back down to the school for the fireworks display. I must say the display was HIGHLY impressive, but you will have to take my word for it, because my battery power ran out.
The last day we were there, we went to Ocean City, NJ and played at the beach. It was the first time for all of my family, except myself, to swim in the ocean. They loved it! We all did. Daniel spent most of his time fist-fighting the waves. He was so happy punching something that would fight back and not get him in trouble! Hannah enjoyed riding the waves and looking for and gathering shells. Unfortunately, one of the shells she gathered was still occupied by it's crab. This fact was not discovered until she washed her shells the next morning and the dead hermit crab fell out. YUCK!!