Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Schiele Museum

We haven't been to the Schiele Museum since early last May and I knew the Caves Exhibit was closing in January. So, Tuesday morning during breakfast I asked the boys "what fun thing do you want to do today?" Micah wanted to go to Monkey Joes (doesn't he know we only go there with a coupon and when it's half-off Wednesday?) and Grady Lee wanted to go to a museum. Score. Off we went.
The Caves Exhibit was pretty cool and my boys were all about wearing hard hats with flashlights. Annalyse, however, seemed a little uncertain of the dark and the insect noises buzzing all around. She was content to sit in her stroller and take it all in, but once I did get her out, there was no going back. She was all about going in and out of the tunnels and seeing the different cave animals.
And speaking of cave animals, I am not, I repeat not, a fan of bats. Is there anything uglier? Well, maybe the several snakes they had that like living in caves. They were pretty ugly, too. More than ugly, just plain gross! I know they eat bugs and rodents but still. Ugly and gross.
We learned about fossils and skeletons that have been discovered deep inside caves around the world. The informational signs may have suggested something along the lines of billions and billions of years, but my boys only heard, "way back at the beginning of creation..."
We also learned about animals that like to live in caves, hence the cages with bats and snakes. On the cute side of cave animal life, there were a couple of darling bobcats that jumped from rock to rock and had fun rough housing together. Micah declared, "They like to wrestle just like Grady and me do!"
After touring the caves, we walked through the animal and habitat exhibits. Annalyse was off and running and before I knew it, she parked her little hind end on a bench to watch a few fifth grade girls put on an animal puppet show for her. Cutest thing ever to see those girls try to entertain Annalyse and have a skunk and raccoon tell her a story.
If only I had though to get a video clip here. Grady Lee is telling, or yelling rather, for Annalyse to back up because "buffalo are very fast and very strong. When a herd of them run it's called a stampede and if you're not careful you will die. A lot of Sioux Indians died by chasing buffalo to eat." It's true: my five year old is a walking factoid of things you least expect him to know.
We talked about where different animals live, what they eat, how to know if it's a male or female, and what their babies are called. Thank goodness the fifth grade school group was always a room or two ahead of us so that they didn't have to hear my boys loudly make wolf howls or bear growls or snake hisses or dinosaur roars.
My camera battery died just as we entered the American Indian exhibit, which is probably a-ok because I found myself telling Micah not to pick up the buffalo-bone mallet and Grady Lee not to touch the rabbit skin coat and Annalyse to not throw her Cheerios. 

We'd been there two hours. It was lunchtime. It was time to go. And maybe, just maybe, the boys learned a tidbit of something or other.

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