First of all, a very happy birthday to this guy! Sander got to spend the day with his siblings and a friend at the Children’s Museum. What could be better? This is him climbing in the big climbing area at the front of the museum. I remember climbing on this thing when I was a kid. It’s awesome, and was an awesome way to start the day for Sander’s birthday.
The first thing the kids actually saw was an exhibit on dinosaurs put in by the Museum of Science. Corde thought the fossils were pretty awesome. She had to point out that her hand must have made that track. Yeah, she’s just a little off on that.
That’s where we saw this beast. It’s pretty cool, right? What’s really extra awesome about it is it’s controlled by a kid off on the side (that you conveniently can’t see, and I didn’t know it at the time I filmed this.) The kids thought it was incredible.
Then Corde had to do this, because it’s just who she is. I couldn’t resist throwing in a little bit of her personality into the mix. Yeah, she just might have had a good time too, just a little bit.
Just like last time they had a blast at the city area. They all really love playing store in that shop. I kind of wish I had a place they could play store like that here. It would be so much fun for them. Then again, if they had access to it everyday they probably wouldn’t love it so much. Plus, it’s fun when the other kids come in, usually. Today there were some really pushy kids that came in as a part of a school group. Luca was waiting very patiently for a turn at the cash register, but the kids from this public school kept pushing right by them, and their chaperone said nothing about the pushing and the refusal to share (unless it was with another student from their school group). I really think we may make our next visit when the school kids won’t be there.
And Corde with her thing with mangoes. It’s got to do with My Little Pony Abridged. She loves that show, and there’s something on there about Apple Jack selling mangoes. Since then it’s been a thing of hers. Think she’s got enough mangoes there?
The next room we went to had all the work trucks. The kids absolutely love this room, though it was a little hard to keep track of them. Again, the school group plagued us here. They were literally running circuits around the place. It made it less fun for a while, but it got really quiet when they left. I even got a picture of Corde playing with the trucks by herself!
The kids always like the raceway room too. Nothing says fun like science experiments with golf balls. Hey, look at that, it’s even a picture of me! Corde took that because I figured I never have pictures of myself in these things, so it might be nice if I were included every now and then. I probably would be if Oz was with us, but his work schedule often prevents it, like it did today.
This was particularly fun for the kids. The whole board is a series of lights. They change color when you twist the light fixture. It started with Corde and dad that wanted to turn the whole thing red. They kept having little kids come up and swipe the board or just start randomly turning things. He eventually gave up, but Corde kept going back to it. Eventually (with the help of all the kids), they got it done. This is the result:
Isn’t that cool? I particularly thought so. I’d love to have one of those things in my living room, just to play with. I can imagine writing messages across it. Somehow it reminds me of the old Light Bright thing kids used to have. The only problem with this one is the center dot wouldn’t turn red for some reason, so they turned it black and went wit it. I think they did a pretty good job.
The whole section was based on snow and winter. They had a sock skating rink, snowflake lights on the ground, and this collection of boxes, challenging kids to make a snow fort. Luca found these inside the snow fort and decided a hot chocolate party in a snow fort is every bit as fun as a tea party, so we got to enjoy that. It was a small bit of Luca and me time we were able to squeeze out today. Usually Luca likes a lot of one-on-one time, but it’s rough when there are so many other kids that need my attention, so this was extra nice.
This is a collection of some of the other photos we took today. We got to see a lot of the museum, which works because we were there for five hours at least. When we got there we had lunch, but after that we were on to the exhibits. I say exhibits loosely because it’s really more like a giant playground than a museum. It’s got plenty of opportunities to experiment, but it’s not a classical museum in any sense of the word.
We had a great time, but you can see the results. (Okay, what you can’t see is Luca sleeping on top of me and my backpack on the seat beside me, but you get the idea.) The kids were all tired out, almost too tired for Sander’s birthday dinner (pepperoni pizza).
All together I’d say the museum was really fun, aside from that one school group that caused all the problems. I really wish the chaperones had spent more time focused on the kids and less time chatting or on their phones. At one point a fist fight even broke out, which is no good for anyone. I’m not saying schools are horrible or anything, but this school group in particular was a nightmare. If I have my way, we’ll never go again when there’s a school group there. There’s too much chaos, too much noise, and too many people to settle in and really enjoy anything.
We’ve also talked a lot about just sucking it up and getting a membership at one of the local museums, a place we’d probably plan to visit enough times each year to make it worth the investment. This will not be one of those places. While it’s fun to play, it’s one of the most expensive museum memberships for our family size, nearly twice what they ask at the Museum of Science. It’s more of a playground than a place of learning, and the stuff is really geared towards preschoolers more than anything, maybe kindergarten and first grade kids or something, but certainly not a teen, a nearly tween, and a newly turned 8 year old. They had fun, and I can see us visiting once a year for a while (because the cost of one visit for all of us is reasonable), but I don’t think it’s worth a membership, especially since we’d have to go three times in a year to be worth it. We’ll probably go once a year and call it good for the next couple of years until even Luca is really too old for it.