Our long awaited White House tour was scheduled for Friday morning, the 11th by the Tour Coordinator in Senator Pat Roberts' office. Philip also wanted us to see the Bureau of Engraving and Printing and you can't get those tickets online or in advance. To make that happen, he (and Keenan also decided to go) headed downtown to get to the BEP ticket booth at 8 am. After securing tickets they rode the DC circulator around the tidal basin to visit the FDR and MLK Jr. Memorials. The other two kids and I met them downtown around 10 am. We walked around part of the Ellipse and ran into the wife of Philip's former squadron commander (from over 6 years ago!) who was also taking their two youngest children on the White House tour shortly after ours.
Keenan and FDR
Looking at the South Side of the White House
General Sherman monument (you can now only get this close if you have a White House tour)
After this we went through many rounds of security screening where our reservation was confirmed multiple times. I'd forgotten to bring any ID (since you're not allowed to bring any bags, full size camera, or even a purse on this tour) but thankfully Philip had our passports in his pocket. Once we cleared security they encouraged picture taking (no flash) and so we had a ton of phone pictures. I was so glad to have my new phone with a much better camera. We entered through the East Wing and quickly moved into a corridor connecting to the house decorated with art and many pictures of the President and their families, pets, weddings, state dinners, etc.
This goal probably belongs to Baron Trump and not the President ;)
Caleb and Abraham Lincoln
Moriah and I with a photo of First Lady, Barbara Bush
(the Lilacs on the table were Amazing!)
The rooms were So beautiful!
China Room (displays of formal china from previous administrations)
The other wall of the China Room
We then headed upstairs to the East Room
Presidents Lincoln and Kennedy both laid here in state after their assasinations
East Room selfie!
The had rolled-up the red carpet for us
Keenan and President Kennedy
The flowers throughout the house were Gorgeous! How fun it would be to be the White House Florist!
One of the staircases leading up the residence on the 2nd and 3rd floor
The South Lawn where Marine One lands
More beautiful flowers
The South Portico
Looking out over the South Lawn to the Washington Monument
State Dining Room
Look at that piano!
Heading out the front door
(It was strange looking OUT of the house at all the people in the distance looking At the house)
This light (often seen in photos) is actually Huge!
The flowers outside were gorgeous as well
The Old Executive Office Building where the Vice President and many others in the Executive branch work
Selfie in the North Portico
Visiting dignitaries typically enter the White House here
Beautiful fountain on the north lawn
Oh, just strolling on the grounds of the White House
Almost all of the Secret Service agents gave Keenan a hard time about his choice of an FBI shirt when touring the White House. However, these two allowed the boys to take a picture as we were leaving the grounds.
One even let Caleb hold his badge!
The North Side (showing the front door we had just walked out a few minutes prior!)
Anyone can get the President's Park badge by completing activities in the visitor center and publicly accessible areas of President's Park (like the ellipse). You can only get the White House badge after you complete the tour.
Looking at a scale model of the White House to show the kids our path through the building
We returned to the food court in the Reagan Building to get lunch while Philip made a round trip to our rental house to get the camera bag, sunscreen and few other things we would want for the rest of the day that we couldn't take on the White House tour. After lunch we walked across the National Mall to the BEP.
One Million Dollars (in tens)!
The rest of the tour was strictly no cameras allowed but you can see the printing presses in action churning out new money. In the gift shop you can purchase uncut sheets of legal tender bills.
Notice they marked the price up for these sheets! :)
Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial
A Caleb and Mommy selfie with the Jefferson Memorial in the background
Korean War Memorial
Caleb drawing one of the faces from the memorial for his Junior Ranger assignment
Family shot with the Washington Monument and Reflecting Pool working as intended
Us with Abraham Lincoln
Vietnam Veteran's Memorial
(How adorable are these ducklings! There was only one adult duck with them all, but I can't imagine they were all hers!?)
A family of Canadian Geese with some adolescent young
World War II Memorial
What a busy day that was! We were all hot and tired and ready to head home to Dupont Circle!