Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Museum of Natural History

The above photo is one of my favorites... check out Brian and Larkin and the brontosaurus in the grand lobby of the Museum of Natural History! I love the enormous dinosaur looming behind them!

While Brian and I were kind of hoping for everything to come to life like it did in the movie "Night at the Museum", Larkin adored the exhibits that we visited. The dinosaurs are always a must-see for me, and despite the fact that a Russian tourist knocked her over in his rush to see the Rex, Larkin loved the dinosaurs too (as you can clearly tell from the pics).

We saw a number of still-life, stuffed animal exhibits that reminded me of two things: 1) trips to the natural history museum as a kid, and 2) our local Bass Pro Shop (a redneck's version of the natural history museum - you can get really close to the stuffed bear there!). I was amazed that it was so quiet in the museum at one point that Larkin was the only person in the huge room with the elephants - it was really cool and special-feeling.

We paid the extra few bucks to experience the acclaimed "Butterfly Exhibit". I do warn you, however, should you decide to go some day... be prepared because it is HOT in there (upper 80's and very humid), so you can't last in there as long as you'd like. But, it was cool to see the beautiful butterflies and moths flying all over and around you. There were 500+ butterflies and moths and they hatch new ones every day. You are warned to not touch them (they can be poisonous) but that's not really a problem because they fly around you, not wanting to land on you much. It was a special treat, worth the time and money, if you get the chance.

Larkin loved the 4-minute Big Bang movie. We thought she might be scared because it's pitch black inside the room, but she was in awe of the short movie. She kept saying "Wow!".

Gavin and Luke's current favorite part of the museum is the science, space and galaxy exhibits and I can see why. There are all sorts of hands-on learning stations, but what I loved the most were the galactic scales. You could see what your weight would be in all sorts of places. Below are the pics from Larkin's weigh-ins (and note that she currently weighs 30 lbs)... from lightest to heaviest: Halley's Comet (.028 lbs), the Moon (4.6 lbs), Jupiter (63 lbs), the Sun (738 lbs), and on a Neutron Star, Larkin would weigh 392,000,000,000 lbs!

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