The National Botanic Garden is a wonderful (did I mention free) winter hang out. All warm and humid and smelling of green living things. Ah, I miss green. It's a great place to bring your art supplies, or just wander around and pretend you are on vacation.
There is another botanic garden in Baltimore and at that one they have fish you can feed. Man, that is a whole afternoon right there.
Naia met a young artist, introduced herself, asked a thousand questions, and decided to draw with her. This young woman deserves a patience award for humoring my little extrovert.
One other favorite cold day run around spot is the Air and Space Museum. We adore all of the Smithsonians, but Zach will beg for the extra long drive out by Dulles Airport to see "the annex", or the second air and space where they keep all of the big stuff. Like a whole space shuttle. The real thing. And a stealth bomber. And the Enola Gay. And every sort of flying machine since flying began. It's a huge hangar, and did I mention it's also free? And we can call it school. What's not to like?
The only downside is that all of these fun indoor places and more are not in our town, but in the city. We don't mind a trip in but with a toddler in tow we need to be organized and start the day early or we lose momentum. Our town sadly has zero indoor community resources except our little library.
So the museums are our favorite winter hang out. Well, our favorite is at a friend's house with a fireplace and an open washer/dryer to use. But museums are a close second.