This year, for my birthday, Jeremy surprised our family with a three day trip to Philadelphia.  Honest to goodness, I think it’s my favorite family vacation.  Because truth be told, it’s a vacation that is entirely focused on eating fun food, resting and relaxing.  We always stay at the Embassy Suites (which means free snack hour, fresh made omelettes for breakfast and lots of gym and pool time) and we always have an amazing time.  And three or four times during our stay, we venture over to hang out at the country’s largest mall in King of Prussia where we all eat our favorite foods (mine is a sushi burrito) and do basically whatever we like (Ellee and I always have fun, shopping and finding all sorts of great deals at Primark).

So you can probably imagine my delight with this trip, especially when it came after last week’s Missions Conference at our church.  Trust me, the conference was amazing.  But it was also a crazy busy week and by Sunday, I was ready to get away.  The trip was all I hoped it would be and more.  We rested and relaxed and all were delighted to be back in Philly again.  But this trip turned extra fun when God blessed us with what felt like summer days with temps in the 70s and 80s.

On this trip, we decided to venture out a bit and explore the nearby Valley Forge National Historical Park.  Jeremy brought his road bike so went out a few times to ride and on Monday afternoon while he was riding, I decided to take the kids over to the park.  I’ll be honest.  I bribed them.  I actually told Christian that he could come and just relax on a blanket and not do anything.  Because truthfully, I was the one who really wanted to get out and take a nice walk with Ellee.  But when we got to the park, I was pleasantly surprised, when he cheerfully told us that he’s rather hang out with us instead.

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The day could not have been more perfect.  We went to check out these replica cabins.  Though at the time I didn’t know they were replicas so I confidently told Christian they were real and he proceeded to give us a fairly accurate description of all that went on in them during Washington’s stay in Valley Forge.  He was impressed and I was impressed by how much he had learned about this area from his social studies teacher (thanks Mr. Costanzo).

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Leading up from the two huts was a trail that wound up through the side of this beautiful mountain/hill.

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It was beautiful and woodsy.  And since it’s only April, there weren’t a lot of bugs nor ticks (hopefully).

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Cheers to this girl.  She lost her confidence/willpower a few times on our hike.

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Granted, she did choose to wear flip flops, which made it a bit more tricky throughout the steep parts.  But thankfully, she found a “walking stick” and all was right with the world again.

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Also, this small complimentary hotel cup of pretzels and chips helped as well.

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We finally made it to the top.  And I could not be more delighted or proud of these two.

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We loved it so much that the next day, we convinced this awesome guy to join us for another hike.  Of course on the way, we got lost a few times trying to find the right spot (the park spans 3500 acres) but thankfully eventually found our way.

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The woods were as pretty as you could expect in early spring.  And the temperatures that day were a non-humid 80 degrees, which is pretty much perfection.

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This time around, the kids found a rock wall to climb up, and my heart was so happy watching them get along and help each other.  A slip and fall almost put Ellee out, but thanks to the encouragement of her brother, she brushed herself off and was good to go.

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And that sums up how we spent the first part of our Spring Break.  It was so awesome and so timely and I was so incredibly thankful that we were able to get away for a few days.  A huge thanks to the gem that truly is Valley Forge National Historical Park for an added adventure on our favorite family vacation.

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Written by lauraherr8

I love Jesus, my Youth Pastor Husband and our two beautiful children. I'm a professional photographer and I love people, especially kids. My best days include time with my family, Hot Yoga and a Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream cone.

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