Friday, February 13, 2009

Forget The Art, I'm All About The Kids!

I love museums. I love science museums and kid museums anyway. You know, the ones where you get to play. I know this makes me a bad an uncultured person, but for me art should be something you love that's on your walls. I just have no interest in looking at weird (or beautiful) thing after weird thing in hall after hall.

Before kids, science museums were my savior. They were so much fun to play in. And don't ask me about the toy and ummm stuffed animal (like taxidermy) museums I went to in Munich. I still enjoy them today, but luckily I now have children's museums that I can justify going to.

The Kohl's Children's Museum is one of our favorites. They have a ton of stuff to do and play with, and they change up some areas. We go every chance we get when we have a day off school. Like today.

And mmmm the pretzel cafe. I was so proud of myself for walking out of there having only a veggie sandwich pretzel and not getting one of their specialty stuffed pretzels or their chocolate chip cookies with pretzels on top. Ok ok ok. That's only because I'm headed out NOW for my quarterly girls' night out in the city where we're going to a fantabulous restauarant. And eating and drinking. A lot. I love Metra!

But without further ado -- my cute wee ones enjoy the museum! And remind me to renew when we go back in two weeks. Our membership expires March 1!

Little Miss loves to decorate the house they have there. The magnetic wallpaper may be tacky, but she's learning her home improvement skills early! Then again, I wouldn't wish the skill of wall papering on anyone. That stuff is such a pain!

Mister Man absolutely loved being a vet. He put that little lab coat on the second he walked into the vet area and never took it off -- including when we left. Oops. He was fascinated by the microscope that blew up images of everything from a tapeworm to a flea to a human hair. Watching him examine all those was... well, adorable.

As the vet, he got really into it. Not only was he taking care of the animals there, but he was getting into their kennels to help them out so they would feel more comfortable there. And it's possible that Little Miss closed the door on him and tried to lock him in. Possible....

Little Miss wasn't going to be left out of the action. She wouldn't wear the lab coat, but she walked around with the giant shot needle for a long time. Look at the expression on this poor girl's face as Little Miss gave her kitty a big shot!

This museum also has face painting available as an option. Generally, Little Miss prefers to do her own face painting. That means she dips the crayon thing into the sponge to get it wet and then draws all over her face and clothes. I have a picture of her on our calendar for this year where she's almost all magenta. Apparently she's maturing in that she wanted me to draw a butterfly. I have no artistic skills. Do the polka dots hide some of the bad job I did? That was the goal.

And then there's the car wash. This is another perennial favorite. The wee ones run one way through the car wash. Then they run the other way. They dance in the middle. They run back and forth and back and forth. I love it. This pretty much ensures a good nap by the time we get home from the museum.

The most fascinating part of the museum for the wee ones -- and many other kids -- is the dirt pusher. Basically you have a crank that moves little containers up and around a track. When the "dirt" bundles get to the top, they slide down the roof, and there are wheelbarrows to catch the "dirt" and bring it back to the beginning. We always spend about half our time at this one station. Then again, so do most of the boys that make it that far into the museum! It is pretty entrancing to watch, to be honest.

And as a "fundraiser" they offer the twirly coin collector. You put a coin in, and it goes around and around and around. At the bottom, it tells you how much the coin is worth. Ostensibly, this is educational as well as fascinating, right? Well, let's just say that I've caught my kids begging for coins (successfully) from strangers before, but never once have they looked up to see what the value of the coin was worth. We spent a good sixteen cents here today -- not counting what my friend plugged in.

Little Miss announced that she was Captain Hook driving her pirate ship to London to catch Peter Pan. Forget the fact that this boat is supposed to be in the midwest in a traditional pond with deer and geese and dragonflies and such. She's using her imagination, and you should have seen the fierce look Captain Hook gave me after she caught me taking her picture....

And really... I ummm didn't play with any of it. I was just ummmm helping them when they got stuck. Yeah. That's the ticket. And now? It's time for me to go out and act like an adult with my girls night!


Katie Lane February 13, 2009 at 6:32 PM  

I love those places! Lucky you have kids to take with you. They are so cute.

Jill February 13, 2009 at 7:02 PM  

Hey Michelle,

My girls love the museum too. We go to the childrens museum when we stay at the Ronald Mcdonald house there. There is so much for them to do there, hands on.

you must renew...! :0

MaBunny February 13, 2009 at 9:12 PM  

Oh that looks like all of you had fun! Hope you have a great Valentines Day!

WeaselMomma February 14, 2009 at 8:54 AM  

Very Sweet! Glad you all had fun.

Michelle February 14, 2009 at 5:48 PM  

Katie Lane - I'm with you. And ummm yeah... I don't want to be the freaky stalking lady who goes to the children's museums without a child!

Jill - They're great, and they're so accessible, too. They're actually being featured on the local news with a crew coming March 3 (Tues) to film. And yes, I will be renewing!

MaBunny - Thank, ditto to you! It is definitely always fun.

Weaselmomma - Totally. It's a shame you aren't closer. I could see your little weasels having fun there, too. Do you ever go to the one in Naperville? Or wherever it is....

Cookie February 15, 2009 at 6:25 PM  

Great pictures. I love the one of your son in the cage!

Michelle February 16, 2009 at 9:09 PM  

Cookie - I know.... As wrong as it is, I think that's my favorite!

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