Saturday, February 27, 2010

It Is Cold, Yet We Venture Out

Frigid temperatures have kept us indoors for some time now (in addition to the busyness/illness/laziness combo). I decided that something must be done about it, however, so we tromped over to the Natural History Museum after speech therapy to renew our membership and check out what I thought Bastian had meant when he said "the place with the moons." It turns out, he was very upset about my getting it wrong, but due to having to pick up Papa and already being there, after some fit-throwing on his part, we all agreed to go in anyway.

There's an exhibit on aging with lots of games. While the boys watched other boys work the wrinkling machine, I sat around being self-absorbed. I'm not really certain what prairie dogs have to do with aging. I didn't read the sign.Aleks really likes gems for some reason, so I talked him into checking out these massive jewels they've got lying around in the crystal gallery. He seemed mildly impressed, but was wondering why the sapphire was yellow.
We also looked at the wide variety of opal. I think he likes that gems are worth a lot of money and the idea that they come from the ground is appealing. In his mind, it seems that one could just find a ruby while digging in the garden and then you could sell it and make tons of money to buy whatever you want with. I tried to explain mining to him, but he hasn't quite caught on yet.
We watched the ducks out the window in the cold, cold, cold snow.
I took goofy photos of myself.
The children love the dinosaur skeletons. LOVE. Bastian doesn't quite get how long ago the dinosaurs died and thinks that the bones are really their bodies. Aleks was able to completely explain how fossils are formed, however.
We noticed this giant prehistoric deer for the first time. It's an Irish Elk (Megaloceros giganteus), the biggest variety of deer that ever lived. It lived during the late Pleistocene. It is thought that humans may have helped to drive them into extinction by hunting them. It is really, really, really big.
The boys touched the giant rotating earth as we passed by.


Julie said...

Looks like you had fun:)

We're planning on going to our Natural History museum on monday (the first monday of the month is free day). We also haven't been out of the house much (besides the backyard), and are in need of some new scenery:)

Donna said...

I remember reading somewhere that some gems have a variety of colors, aside from the one most commonly known. I think sapphires can be pink as well. Oh! Here
Trace elements of other minerals can give them different colors but when they are red they are rubies

sunnymama said...

This looks like a great museum! Love the goofy picture. :)

Rachel said...

Max went through a gem loving phase, and we actually looked into a vacation in Montana where we could go and dig for sapphires. It never panned out, though. There is a diamond exhibit at the Field Museum (we just saw it last week), so when you guys visit, you can fill Aleks' need for jewels and the bonus of lots of dinosaur stuff. :)

anna kiss said...

I saw that there was a diamonds exhibit at the Field Museum - that's why I chose it! I need to email you back...