Friday, May 04, 2012

Bake-ation: The Bakers take DC and Hershey

Over Spring Break Shan and I decided to take a road trip with the boys.

We had a few convos about what we'd do for Spring Break, but had trouble deciding what.

One night a few weeks before their break, Sam, Shannon and I were talking about different kinds of chocolate (milk, dark, white, etc.). Shannon mentioned to Sam that Hershey actually has a chocolate world and a theme park that he had visited several years ago through a business account. Sam thought that was the coolest thing he'd ever heard.

You could see the light bulb go on over Shan's head... Let's go to Hershey, PA!!!


Yes! We can stop on the way to break up the drive. Drive into Washington DC and stay for a couple of days. Then travel up to Pennsylvania and go to Hershey.

And we did.

We loaded the car {think Beverly Hillbillies} and headed up I-20 to 95.

Our first stop landed us in Richmond, VA.

We ate supper, spent the night, and got up early to drive into DC. We spent the days checking out some museums and doing a little sight-seeing.

DC Day 1: The National Museum of Natural History
Swallowed whole!
Oh look! There I am...suspended from the ceiling!
Oliver wasn't too sure about the giant elephant inside the building.
Shannon bought me a little surcie. You may be familiar with it... The Hope Diamond. It's a little heavy for my liking, so I don't wear it much!

What a neat place!

The boys LOVED being in the museum that featured all of the great characters in The Night at the Museum 2.
Overall Bake-ation Rating: **** 4/5 stars
Sam: **** 4/5 stars His favorite thing: The gems, rocks, and minerals
Fulton: **** 4/5 stars His favorite thing: The giant animals all over
Ollie: *** 3/5 stars His favorite thing: The fossils; especially the "bone turtle"

DC Day 2: The National Air and Space Museum
Our day started out a little rocky, as poor Fu-bird lost his IPhone (I know what you're thinking! It was my old IPhone, not activated. He used it as an ITouch for games a pics.) Any who... so he was very sad when we realized it was gone and didn't enjoy the first part of our trip to the museum.

 Pre-ride in the flight simulator...
Post-ride in the flight simulator...
It's Ollie's turn!

We opted for the Air and Space Museum over the zoo for a couple of reasons: 1 It was recommended to us because we have boys and 2 the weather was kinda iffy for the zoo. Hindsight: We should have gone to the zoo.
Overall Bake-ation rating: *** 3/5 stars Great hands-on kids area, but really just a bunch of retired air crafts too high on display to appreciate. Favorite things: The gift shop and flight simulators.

DC: Various sights and pics
Fortunately, there were several families from SC in the DC area during spring break. We were lucky enough to meet-up with one of our faves, The Verzyls!!! Sam and Fulton were so excited to see them. We played in the park across from the White House and exchanged tourist stories and ideas. It was great!!!
Shan was awkwardly excited about the picture he got of the snipers perched a-top the White House and seeing the Presidential and Vice-Presidential motorcades that we were oh-so-close to.
I was too afraid to take a picture of the motorcades for fear I'd get shot. You never Canon point and shoot could have looked like a gun to the snipers.

So we hit the road and drove through the evening into Pennsylvania!!!

We woke up early and headed to every woman's dreamland HERSHEY, PA!!!!!

I was 150% giddy and even wept at the sight of the Reese's factory. My children thought I was nuts. Shannon already thinks that, but had confirmation at that moment that I am certifiable!

Our first stop...
Hershey's Chocolate World!
The ride through the virtual factory was like "It's a Small World" at Disney, but better because it was ALL CHOCOLATE!!!! There were 3-D chocolate movies, make-your-own chocolate bar, a restaurant, and a gift shop. It was totally fascinating!

Then we made our way to...
Hershey Park!!!
Picture Carowinds, with a chocolate theme. Un-be-liev-able!!! Rides, Games, Custom-made Smores (are you kidding?), a recording booth (that I was dying to go into, but got quickly shot down when we saw the line), great food, and did I mention CHOCOLATE every-where!

I didn't want to leave. And yes, we shut the park down!

Overall Bake-ation Rating: ***** 5/5 stars and worth the drive!

We concluded our trip by driving home the day before Easter. Our 10 hour trip took 12 with a few stops. We came home down 81 and the view was amazing. Such a pretty drive through the mountains. I just marveled at all of God's handiwork. Simply breathtaking.

However, cabin fever or "minivan fever" started to set in after a while and we all began to get a little cranky, frustrated, and delirious. It was evident when the highlight of our car ride was Sam's discovery in his bag of Cheetos...
Wooooooow! It looks like an arrow.

Any who... We made it home safely and it was a GREAT Bake-ation!!! I would recommend it to anyone. I'm already looking forward to our next family road trip! Hmmmm... Where should we go? Any ideas?



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