...is the process by which we create, discover, learn and grow with those we cherish most.




Finding things to do this summer [yes, I'm laughing thinking about the 100+ temperatures]... is a daunting task every summer in Dallas. Until recently when I picked up the July issue of Dallas Child magazine and sorted through their event calendar. Museum? For a two and one year old? Skeptical – but still, it was indoors, air conditioned, and a new Children’s Museum to boot was something I had to check out for myself. And for the children’s sake. I mean, we're talking about nature... history... and science… [big mommy smile!]

Growing up in Queens and attending elementary school at P.S. 91 are school days I’d like to forget – except for the field trips throughout NYC! The
Museum of Natural History was one of those striking places in my memory that I - looking back - took for granted. I had to though. Forced into single filed lines, teachers snapping, “don’t touch”, and people talking loudly above our heads was in retrospect a boring way to learn anything. Instead, I remember 3 things: a blue whale the size of a ship floating above us, Michael Salsado holding my hand during a documentary, and mom’s sack lunches: tuna fish with a cold can of 7-Up.

So needless to say, I was very impressed last Sunday when we visited our
Nature & Science Museum right here in our town. We didn’t know what to expect. But I ask you: Where can you go to dig for dinosaur bones in a sand box?


Plant seeds, harvest vegetables or collect eggs on a farm? Crawl through an ant hole? Try on a space suit? Or drive a fire truck? All while learning about the day-to-day world we live in... This is the place – with family-friendly exhibits that are self paced for small and big explorers alike.



Watching the kids make their way through the maze of hands-on experiences one after the other, was truly a sight to see for us. I was completely taken with how Ava and Noah made it their own experience. While shadowing Ava, I watched her unload her vegetables into the crates at the "Market" - only to pick up the crate and carry her harvest over to the animals. She dropped her crate to the floor, picked up a tomato, and pretended to feed a rocking horse. Satisfied by the quick meal, she picked up her crate and continued her journey through the farm until Aaron and Noah zoomed infront with a tractor!

What I loved most - is that Ava and Noah explored the worlds around them together. When Noah fell inside the fire truck - Ava took off her fireman jacket and stayed with him while we consoled his achy heart and head. When Ava played the xylophone, Noah stood behind her and listened through her final encore. Of course, there were lots of individual moments that excited each of them - and Aaron and I divided our time to follow and play along. Aaron and Ava stepped up on stage, and examined their figures in fun house mirrors. They even built this arch by stacking these blocks together at the same time so that they could meet in the middle.


Noah and I floated ducks along a water table and played with cogs magnetized to a wall that we rearranged and fitted together like a puzzle - and discovering what happens when we turn just one...


At closing time, Ava grabbed my hand and while skipping said, "Mommy. I had a lot of fun at the moo-ze-um today."

"You did? Want to come again Ava?"


Our museum tips:
Adult tickets [children under 3 are free] cost us $17.50. But an individual membership with a guest pass cost us $60 - we were able to refund our ticket fees and get a membership instead. Now, we can visit the museum anytime throughout the year.

Don't bother bringing your stroller with you inside - the kids will be too busy to rest.

Backyard Patio: an indoor secluded area in the Children's Museum for children under 2 to stretch, bounce and crawl on colored foam.

Each time you go, try to focus on one area and then run with it. Ava has been fascinated with the moon before she could talk. The space exhibit gave her a whole new perspective: rocket ships, control panels, and gravity... To extend that kind of learning at home, we checked out some library books about space, put up a poster on our solar system, and have sketched plans* to build one [with twinkling stars]. Dioramas... here we come!

* If you have any suggestions on building one from scratch - please let us know!

1 comment:

  1. After our first visit to the museum, Zarlacht and I stood in the lobby deciding whether or not to buy a membership on the way out. What seemed like such a difficult decision at the time seems like such an obvious one in retrospect. It is definitely worth it. Just knowing the cost of our membership helps the upkeep of the museum should be reason enough... but now each and every time Ava asks to go to the 'moo-ze-um', we can just pack the diaper bag and head out the door. It is only 10-15 minutes away depending on traffic and it has so many activities to do.

    On a side note, when Ava got back from her second trip, she walked right up to me and told me about how she filled her basket and fed the horses. I think the 'Little Urban Farm' is her favorite section of the museum so far... but as soon as she grasps the whole 'outer space' concept, I think she'll be hanging out w/ the big kids at Science Museum.


Thanks for sharing - I will respond to your comment here as well so check back! xo


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