Monday, March 21, 2011

A Day At The Museum

Instead of the Pittsburgh Zoo, we ended up at the Carnegie Natural History Museum and Art Museum on Saturday.

We spent the weekend in Pittsburgh for The Peanut's birthday, and we let her choose which she would like to do on Saturday.  She picked dinosaurs, and loved every minute of it.

It felt like Calvin and Hobbes day for a while, and we loved it, too.

Their collection is pretty good, including some of the most complete skeletons I've seen of trex.  We did a tour of the collection with a docent that turned out to be really wonderful for all the kids -- they allowed them to touch actual fossil remains:  bones, teeth, scales, and even some coprolites (dinosaur poop), which was a huge hit with the wee ones.

The tour was supposed to be about half an hour to forty-five minutes, but it stretched to an hour and a half because all the kids kept asking questions and wanting more.  The docent who gave our tour was fantastic, clearly had some teaching or other child wrangling experience, because she kept them moving along and learning the whole time.

One cool thing they have for the kids is a hands on "dig" where they get to uncover skeletal remains using a little chisel and brush.  As you can see, The Peanut loved it.

They also have exhibits on Egyptian life ("Is that a real mummy?!?  Coooooool.  Just like on Scooby Doo with hieroglyphics!"), arctic and native american life, all sorts of animals and their environments, and minerals out the wazoo.  By the time we got to the art museum, she was exhausted, but managed to hold it together long enough to see a couple of paintings by Vincent Van Gogh, who is her favorite at the moment due to a particularly good episode of Dr. Who.  We'll definitely be back to see more art next time around.

All in all, a great birthday weekend.  Hope your weekend was a fun one, too.

(All photos are mine with my iPhone camera.  Didn't bring the Canon into the museum with me -- wish I had, because I didn't realize they'd allow pix until we were already inside.)

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