Monthly Archives: November 2014

Fair Trade Friday Box Day!

I do so enjoy Fair Trade Fridays!!!!


I received a great ivory colored headband.  Earrings, coffee and a black clay bead necklace.  I would have to admit I most likely would have not purchased orange earrings for myself.  But I have worn them a few times and love them.  This subscription box makes me try new things!

You can find out more information here:

And some of my posts here:

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Holiday Time Best Western Promotion

New Best Western Offer:

Offer Details: Book at by choosing the BEST VALUE or WEB SPECIAL rate and receive up to 20% off the participating hotel’s Flexible Rate. Plus, Best Western Rewards® members who register and book ANY qualified rate on will also receive 500 bonus points per stay* between November 24, 2014 and February 1, 2015.

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When Dad Stays Home

There have been more time recently that Husband has elected not to travel with us.  Work schedules, different interests or family obligations have found Daughter and I without him.  Smartphones allow him to instantly see a picture of her in front of the White House before we even walk away.  Back when technology was not as fingertip we took “flat Daddy” on vacation with us when Dad couldn’t travel.

Oh the things Flat Dad has done!  He has ridden his favorite ride, been in family pictures and enjoyed meals on vacation.  Its a fun way for Daughter to still connect with Dad and tell him nightly all the fun things Flat Dad did during the day without him.

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Flying Frontier Airlines

Through Airfare Watchdog I saw a great fare for $84 rt on Frontier from Detroit to Dulles.  I had never flown them before but how bad can it be?

I was pleasantly surprised and would easily fly them again.  (We are looking at them again for a return to DC.) The economy flight is what we purchased which meant we paid $3 for seat selection and if we had taken a large carry on we would have had to pay for it.

We also took on our backpacks for free with just what we needed for a couple of days.  We did the same thing on our short New York trip.  We have it sorted out to what we truly need to carry with us and always have room for a souvenir or two.

“You may carry-on one personal item that fits under the seat. This item must not exceed 18″ x 14″ x 8″ in dimension, inclusive of all handles, wheels, and straps.”

Personal items include:

  • Handbag, purse, or pocketbook
  • Backpack
  • Briefcase
  • Laptop computer, with or without a bag

We were not sure how strict they would be so we measured twice.  Upon boarding there was easily plenty of overhead space and we were not forced to have them by our feet on either flight.

You do not get free drinks, free peanuts or free crackers.  For $84 I will buy my own IF I need to have a snack.  Pop and beer was offered for sale on the flight but we did not see many takers.

The flight crews were great on both flights.  The only word of warning is do NOT try to switch to an open seat.  You will sit in what you paid for, moving to a stretch seat will get you an offer to pay for the upgrade or a request to move back to your seat.  We saw a woman try to do it twice in two different rows, she was caught by two diff attendants and sent back. It was kinda funny but just an FYI.

All in all we had a great flight. I was thrilled with the price and we would love to fly Frontier again if they are offering round trip flights that reasonable!


Picture from the Denver Post.

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Dulles Airport Food Delivery Service to Hotel Recommendation

The front desk clerk of our hotel recommended Manginos for dinner delivery. Daughter had a race the next day and wanted pasta for dinner.  The extensive menu also had a few coupons inside that we put to good use.


Our food arrived early than the anticipated 40 minutes. Not bad for a busy Friday night!  We ordered a Penne Alfredo, Chicken Parmesan sub, Turkey Breast sub and breadsticks.  We also ordered cans of pop with our meals.

No matter what Dulles hotel you choose we would recommend Manginos for food delivery.  Everything was delicious!!!!

More information can be found here:

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Country Inn and Suites Dulles Airport

We had a very early flight out the next morning from Dulles airport. It did not make sense to stay in Crystal City another night at the Radisson to have to leave so early in the morning.  Instead we used Lyft to take us to our hotel near Dulles.

The hotel is very close to the airport, less than a five minute drive.  However from near the White House in 5:30 traffic it took us almost 45 minutes to arrive at the hotel.

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The White House Photo OP

After hitting two museums and several building “gardens” we ignored our angry feet and walked toward the White House for a photo.  We took a small break for an ice cream truck and then kept moving at a very slow pace. It was well over a mile walk that might have included some whining on the way…

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Gardens at the Smithsonian Museums

It would be lovely to see the Smithsonian Gardens in the spring or early summer. Even with our late fall visit several of them were still stunning. There are sculpture gardens, a rose garden and a butterfly habitat.

The butterfly habitat was done for the season.  We quickly walked through it and were hoping the rest of the gardens were not in the same state.


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Taking the Natural History Smithsonian Tour

Going back to DC I would change a few things. #1 would be to visit the natural history museum first thing in the morning when it opened.  I anticipated spending the most time here so we chose to spend the second half of our days here.  I would instead visit American History in the afternoon…

We arrived a little after one at the natural history museum to throngs of kids.  It was borderline chaos! A longish line for bag check and yelling kids all over the levels.  We waited a few moments for the 1:30 tour and this group was very large.  With the noise it was at times hard to hear the guide depending on what room we were in.

We began in the gems and minerals, learning about the Hope Diamond.  And other interesting stories about jewels located in that room. Fascinating that the Hope Diamond was mailed to the Smithsonian!

Then we moved on to whales, giant squid, moon rocks and Lucy,  Our guide was very good at explaining everything from how much whales eat to how they pieced together Lucy.  Unfortunately a little after 3pm we had to bail on the tour.  We wanted to visit the mummies and a few other items before leaving for the day.



We were a bit disappointed by the mummies.  Maybe we have seen too many large displays?  It just seemed to be such a small corner, we expected more.


Tours are offered at 10:30 and 1:30 daily.  More information can be found here:

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White Apron Sandwich for Lunch

I like to use Groupons for food whenever possible.  Before our DC trip I found a Groupon that would work for lunch on our museum day.  White Apron Specialty shop serves up hearty sandwiches and is less than half a mile from the American History Museum.

For $13 we received two sandwiches, two bags of chips and two drinks.  The initial plan was to share this between three people.  (And we easily could have, the sandwiches were large.) But in the end we purchased an extra sandwich and shared the rest.

Daughter ordered the Brooklyn, I had the turkey Provencal and Sister ordered the Bronx sandwich.  All were on huge sliced baguette with loads of toppings. Ordering was very quick!  We snagged one of the last tables as it was pretty busy at 12:30.  Lots of professionals grabbing lunch!  All of us enjoyed our sandwiches and would return again!


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