12 April 2012

Chicago Children's Museum

Warning:  There are 45 pictures on this post.  I'm not sorry about it either.  

Doug took the day off last Friday and we headed down to Chicago to visit the Children's Museum which is located on Navy Pier.  Navy Pier is like a combo shopping mall/IMAX theatre/ outdoor rides/cruise ship docks.  Had I realized, maybe we would've tried to go out on one of the boats and toured the lake, but our main focus of the trip was the children's museum.  

The children's museum is 3 story of fun for the kids!  There were lots of different room to explore and I think we only really got about 2/3rds of the way and we were there from opening at 10am to 4pm (it closes at 5pm.)

Since there were 4 of us we split up so the kids could explore on their own terms.  I spent the morning following Sariah around.  First stop...

Circus Zirkus
She's a circus star!  Spinning on the hoop!

Climbing the ladder!

Hanging on the swing!
 Play it Safe (Fire safety)

Sariah was really good at sliding down the pole.
 Skyline (building)
She insisted on the goggles and hard hat.  (Sorry for the sideways pic.)

She built this herself.  I'm not really sure what it was.
 Climbing Schooner  
Climb Sariah!

 After Sariah scaled the schooner to the 2nd floor we headed outside to detox for a bit.  It was quite crowded inside and loud.  After stepping outside we asked Sariah what she wanted to do next, maybe walk down the dock and see the boats or eat lunch or something.  Her response?  "Can we do that?" as she points to the large Ferris Wheel.  Oh boy.

First off, I'm not a huge fan of heights.  Second, my brain images all kinds of impossible scenarios on how we would plunge to our doom.  But Sariah really wants to do this, so I swallow my fear (sort of) and we pay to do it with the stipulation that both kids will keep their backsides firmly planted on the seats.

Can you see the death grip I've got on the bar & Sariah's hand?

Sariah really loved it.  You can see the Chicago skyline behind her.

Bryson with the cutest smile ever.  He really enjoyed it too. 

We survived!
 After a lunch at Mcdonald's (it was nice so we ate outside, even with the flock of birds staring down at us from the trees hoping we'd drop a french fry) we went back inside the museum.  I spent the afternoon mostly with Bryson.

Water Ways (Probably the kids favorite place)

The harder you pumped the higher the water flew!

Siblings working together.

Before you wonder, I wrote Sariah's name to get her interested in the water painting, but she did write it again later.

Bryson poses next to my awesome race car pic.  (I personally liked the water painting)

Bryson stayed here for a good 45 minutes.  

Happy Boy.

Micheal's (Mini) Museum
I see you!

Bryson liked to open all these drawers.  Inside was a different collection of things to look at.  The drawers had  plastic covers on top so you couldn't touch. 

Dinosaur Expedition
Don't eat Bryson! (ps. his eyes do that droopy thing Doug's do when the flash catches them)
Don't eat Sariah, either!

Momma's boy.

Big Backyard (bugs)
The bugs on the screens would avoid your shadow.  The better ones were  the few where the bugs fell out of sky and over the "umbrellas" but this was the only one you could take a pic of from the opposite side.  

Inventing Lab
This slide is suppose to play a scale as you slide down, but Bryson was still pretty wet from the  water ways and  didn't slide very fast. 

Daddy gives Sariah a "massage" on the rolling pin chair.

 Kids Town
The driver on the bus says move on back!

Move on back, all the way back!

Bryson loves a play grocery store & cash register

My little chef!

Bryson loves a play kitchen the best of all!  It's def. his favorite at any place.

Into the oven it goes!
 Finally the kids were worn out, so we headed out through the indoor garden.  They had cool "hopping" fountains and water that streamed right over our heads.
Water over our heads is cool!

These flowers are the same kind that were in my Grandma Holbrook's wedding bouquet .  They always make me think of her and Grandpa. 
And then we were on our way home.  Traffic wasn't too bad considering it was 4pm and almost rush hour on a Friday.  We made good time and stopped at the Olive Garden in Janesville on the way home.  We made it just in time for the kids to fall exhausted into bed.  We had a great time, and we'd probably do it again.  Highly recommended!

11 April 2012

Spring Break

We had our Spring Break last week.  We didn't really have any real plans for the week, we couldn't afford a vacation, but Doug did take one day off (which I'll blog about separately.)  The week was still super busy.  There were a lot of fun things happening at the local library, a friend and I attend the gym everyday so the kids got to play there, and the weather has been beautiful, so there was never a dull moment the entire week (or more like 10 days since Sariah didn't go to school the Friday before break and didn't go back until yesterday.)

Here's some highlights:

First, one last picture from Sariah's Itty Bitty Performance.  She can't wait to do it all again this Summer!

 We had Baby Benjamin with us on part days on Monday and Tuesday, so I didn't get any pictures, but we did find a great park with a large flat field for kite flying.  Sariah really liked it, but every so often the wind would die and the kites would crash.  We never really got both in the air before Benjamin needed some attention.  To compensate, we went to Sonic after for slushies.

Wednesday we had a playdate in the morning with a friend we don't really see much anymore, then we stopped by Epic for lunch.  Doug has moved offices (again) since changing teams, and since it was such a nice day, we walked through their outdoor areas to get to the cafeteria.  We stopped to take a quick pic with Humpty Dumpty here.
 Thursday morning the Library hosted their annual egg hunt.  Its usually a long wait followed by a wild (and super quick) romp through the children's section to find eggs.

Here's Bryson before:
 And during...  I kind of lost track of Sariah during the hunt.  She insisted to me before hand that she only wanted pink and purple eggs so she headed off in a different direction on her quest.  We had a prearranged meeting spot if we got separated, so I wasn't totally worried.  (I was still a little worried, but we found her easily.)
Run, Bryson, Run!
 Ah, the spoils of victory!  (See Sariah's basket?  All pink & purple.)
Oh yes, did you notice Sariah's shoes?  They don't match.  She was insistent that she wear mismatch shoes (and later socks) that day.  It was a one day thing.

Friday we headed down to Chicago, more on that later.

Saturday we didn't have swim lessons like normal, so we took advantage of the 2 hr family swim at the gym.  To say that Sariah was excited about swimming at the gym would be an understatement.  She was so excited that she counted down the days, she cared more about it than baskets from the Easter bunny, more than our trip to Chicago, more than anything that happened on Spring Break.  She was not disappointed.

Speaking of Easter baskets, the Bunny did bring baskets by on Saturday (we do secular stuff on Saturday so we can focus on the Savior on Sunday.)  I didn't get any pictures but the kids got some new books and a puzzle each.  Sariah in enjoying a Dora watercolor book and Bryson got a Noah's ark lift the flaps book.  Saturday evening we had our friends over for dinner and did some egg coloring, but I didn't get the camera out again.  

Finally, here are the kids on Easter Sunday:

We had to be at the church at 8am, and I took this one picture as we were running out the door (and a little late) but it was perfect.  This dress had been cut out over the Summer and sat around for months before I finally finished it (and a similar one for her friend Lea.)  Bryson's suit came with a red tie, but I remembered I bought this green one a couple of months back and it matched perfectly.

We had a great Sunday, we really focused on the Savior, and Sariah has learned so much about the atonement and resurrection.

So that was our Spring Break/Easter weekend.  Life is back to normal now, not any less busy of course, but back to normal.