Saturday, July 7, 2012

A qualified success?

Early in June, D and I planned to take the kids on an overnight trip about two hours from our home at the end of the month.  We intended to visit a local zoo, explore some caves and check out a dinosaur "museum" of sorts.  This last idea sounded like a great one until G had this experience at our city zoo's dinosaur exhibit.

My SIL and niece visited this dinosaur museum we intended to visit and informed us that the dinosaurs there did not move or make any kind of noise so we asked G if he wanted to go.  At first he said no, but then he spent the entire week following this conversation carrying around the dinosaur museum brochure and asking every morning upon waking at 6:00, "Is today the day we see the dinosaurs?"

Somehow parenthood has turned me into an eternal optimist because last weekend, convinced that G could not only handle seeing dinosaurs that don't move or make any sound, but was eager to, we headed a few hours down the expressway.

Less than one mile from the dinosaur "museum," G turned his head towards the back of the car, squeezed his eyes shut and starting crying that he did not want to go see the dinosaurs.

Oh jeez.

But we went anyway because we were so close.  I had to do much soothing, calming, convincing and tongue-biting.  G managed to look at the dinosaur sculptures in the parking lot and in the courtyard of the exhibit.  He adamantly refused to walk the trail and see them in the forest-like setting so I carried him.  In 100+ degree heat.  Like any good stupid momma would.

He kept his head firmly planted in my neck with eyes shut tight.  I managed to get him to loosen his death-grip on my neck.  And he didn't scream in my ear or cry as I walked along, which was a vast improvement over how he acted at our local zoo.

He did enjoy the fossil dig part of the day.
And the gift shop where we bought him a Transformer-like dinosaur for being brave (that he broke within 15 hours of purchase).

By the end of the visit, he felt courageous enough to do this.  

After that, the rest of the trip was cake.  

 A cave museum.

 A Smithsonian roots music exhibit. 
(Me and my own "Spoon Man" ala Soundgarden.)

Our first cave.  
G said, "I am NOT going in that cave," then proceeded to go into the cave and ask the tour guide a bunch of questions.

A small zoo featuring lots of Australian animals. 
A keeper showed N how to make a sound that would get the kookaburra's response.  
We laughed like idiots every time the kookaburra laughed.

Another cave.

The kids were able to pet a kangaroo and emu.

Playing didgeridoos. 

Getting up close with snakes.

My inquisitive little guy ready to ask a question. 

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