Archive for the 'Fun' Category

Mummies in Denver

Mummies: New Secrets from the Tombs
#MummiesInDenver

On Friday, we were able to arrange Dad’s work schedule so that we could whisk Claire away from school at the sound of the bell and head to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science to check out the new Mummy Exhibit! (We are members of the DMNS, but we were given free tickets to check out this exhibit.)

Ever since Claire was but a wee lass, her favorite room at the DMNS has always been the Egyptian Mummies. Every time we’d visit the museum, we’d stop by and see the mummies. As what happens with toddlers and preschoolers, some visits to the DMNS would be shorter or longer than others, but regardless of how long we were there, a visit wasn’t complete without going to that room.

When I found out they were bringing a larger exhibit of mummies to the DMNS, I *knew* we HAD to go. (The Mummy Exhibit opened October 14, 2016 and goes through February 5, 2017. A special ticket required.) Going on opening day was just icing on the cake.

Quote from the website:
The exhibition is a rare glimpse at a collection of mummies from The Field Museum in Chicago, many displayed for the first time. Using modern technology and noninvasive research techniques, scientists avoided the hazards of unwrapping the fragile specimens and uncovered a wealth of new discoveries. Medical scanning, DNA sampling, and advanced computer modeling revealed a storehouse of natural and cultural information with extraordinary detail.

We were not disappointed!

It was absolutely amazing, mind-boggling, really. We’d never seen so many mummies up close…and not just replicas (there were a few), but these are the REAL DEAL. The only thing between us and these amazing specimens was a thin protective case, and thousands of years, which seemed to vanish before our very eyes.

This exhibit includes mummies from Egypt AND Peru, which was unexpected. (When I think “mummies,” I think of Egypt, so it was really fascinating to learn about how mummification played into the Peruvian culture, too.)

Cameras were allowed in certain parts of the exhibit, but the more delicate pieces were off limits to photography.

We spent an hour in the exhibit, and when we were done, I asked Claire what her favorite part was. She said it was a tough choice, but she settled on “The Gilded Lady.” This particular one was last seen in public at the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. As you can see in the photo (which I was allowed to take), you can see her CT scan, and what she would have looked like (in the reflections).

Claire and "The Gilded Lady"

Claire and “The Gilded Lady” (click image to enlarge)

The juxtaposition of these ancient relics and the marvels of modern science used to see their inner secrets was amazing.

All evening, I thought about this exhibit. I just couldn’t wrap my head around what we’d seen and how old these specimens were. I thought about what these people would think if they knew that thousands of years into the future, they would be on display in a museum. Then, I was struck by two thoughts: On one hand, these people never wanted to be exposed. They did what they could to prevent tomb-robbers, and to protect themselves from the elements. On the other hand, they wanted to live forever…and now they have.

If you get a chance, you need to check out this exhibit. It truly is amazing.

Breaking the Rules

Okay, normally, “The Rules” are: 1) if it’s not actively precipitating, and 2) if it’s above freezing, we’ll go to the park after school.

Momma broke the rules today, and we went to the park when it was below freezing!! Why? Daddy & Claire got Momma a new coat, and IT’S SO COMFY. Red, puffy, awesome COMFY. (I sense a conspiracy.)

Park Day 01.08.16

In related news, Claire found her favorite thing: ICICLES.

Claire "rescued" a big one!

Claire “rescued” a big one!

I found a unicorn at the park!

I found a unicorn at the park!

Icicle 01.08.16

Claire found a wand.

Claire found a wand.

Looks like we may have to amend “The Rules” after all… 🙂

7th Annual Nutcracker!

7th Annual Nutcracker 2015

 

Nutcracker 2015

It’s hard to believe this is the SEVENTH ANNUAL Nutcracker for us, but it’s true! I love this tradition of ours!

Dress Like Someone You Admire Day

Today at Claire’s school it’s “Dress Like Someone You Admire Day.”

Here is Mr. Rasmussen.

I told her to look surly, but she refused.

I told her to look surly, but she refused.

The Sherlock Holmes Exhibit at the DMNS

Sherlock Holmes is one of my all-time favorite characters. When I was younger, I enjoyed reading Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s books. Now, I love the BBC version of Sherlock, and Elementary on CBS. (Not to mention the movie versions with Robert Downey, Jr. and Jude Law.)

When I heard that my favorite place in Denver was hosting The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes, I jumped at the chance to go!

Much Will Be Revealed DMNS

(I was given free tickets to this event in exchange for an honest review.)

SPOILER ALERT: I LOVED IT.
DOUBLE SPOILER ALERT: I THOUGHT I WOULD, BEFORE I EVEN WENT.
TRIPLE SPOILER ALERT: I REALLY DID LOVE IT. I’M NOT JUST SAYING THAT TO BE RIGHT.

When I got to the DMNS (Denver Museum of Nature and Science), as I was waiting for a friend to join me, I got eaten by a dinosaur. #TrueStory
The End.
Shortest Review Ever!

Just kidding… Kinda!

Just kidding… Kinda!

This "dinosaur" was on the prowl!

See? This “dinosaur” was on the prowl…and he was hungry!

So, what did I think of the Sherlock Exhibit? Like I said above, I loved it. We were able to wander through the exhibit at our leisure and solve a mystery while doing so. How awesome is that?? We were there for TWO HOURS…and did it seem like it? No. No, it did not! It was amazing.

Sherlock Signs DMNS

With the cost of admission, you are given a booklet, which is a detective’s notepad of sorts. Each station has things to learn and a place to stamp in the book before you move on. In doing so, you’re given a secret code from Sherlock himself! The way it is revealed made me gasp out loud; it was SO CLEVER. (I won’t spoil it.)

Then, you head to 221B Baker Street to see Sherlock’s Victorian Era digs. Museum workers in period costume and British accents are rubbing elbows with the crowd. Other museum volunteers are at each station offering clues and answering questions.

You’re shown a murder scene. #allegedly

You gather your own clues and conduct your own experiments to see if your theories are correct.

Which of the experiments was my favorite? The chemical analysis of something potentially poisonous? Dragging a body? Blood splatter?

It’s so hard to tell!

p.s. It’s also hard to adequately photograph blood spurting from a machine. (The windshield wipers were a comical touch. Maybe that wasn’t supposed to be funny? Move along...)

p.s. It’s also hard to adequately photograph blood spurting from a machine. (The windshield wipers were a comical touch.)

At the end, you make your guesses to some key components and then see if you’re right.

Will the correct secret message appear when we slip our detective's notepad into the slot?

Will the correct secret message appear when we slip our detective’s notepad into the slot? My friend, Melissa, does the honors…

We were right! We got to move on to the next set of clues, and then even more answers were revealed to us.

This is a fantastic exhibit. There is so much I’d love to show you via pictures, but I don’t want to spoil your fun!

If you don’t have a Membership to the DMNS, I highly recommend getting one. The cost of the membership pays for itself so quickly, and when exhibits like this come through town, members get discounted pricing. It’s so worth it!

Would I recommend this exhibit for everyone?

If you’ve got small kids in tow, this may not be the one for you. My friend and I spent 2 hours examining everything, and it was so nice to do so without little ones underfoot. I do think my almost-10-year old would TOTALLY DIG this, but use your own judgement.

And to quote Sherlock himself, “Come at once if convenient. If inconvenient, come all the same.” Seriously. Get out to see it! It’s well worth the price of admission.

I added my own message to the back of my detective's note pad.

I have revealed a different message on the back of my detective’s note pad. Click to enlarge…and then GO!

Doing a LEGO Mini-Build

Our local LEGO store offers a monthly LEGO Mini-Build for FREE. We were able to check it out this month, and we are HOOKED! You sign up for a specific time-slot, and a Master Builder works with each group of kids, guiding them through the process. The kids get to keep the set they build, including instructions, and these sets are not for sale!

In the promotional materials, we’re led to believe this is “mini”…it’s anything but!

Shark!

Decidedly NOT a mini Shark!

Claire and her friend had a GREAT time!

Claire and her friend had a GREAT time!

The trick to these is signing up as soon as they open Registration, about a month in advance. It’s well worth the time to do so!

Anderson Farms – Corn Maze & Pumpkin Patch

Anderson Farms Fall Festival:
Children 3 & Under: FREE
Monday – Thursday: $10
Friday – Sunday: $13
*We received three tickets in exchange for a review.

3 of us at the Corn Maze 2015 TCP

We had a fantastic time at Anderson Farms yesterday! We opted to head out on Sunday, as that day looked like it would give us the best weather that weekend. As an added bonus, a certain Sportsball team was also playing on Sunday, so we knew the crowds would be minimal. (We were right!)

It ended up being the PERFECT day to go!

The weather was finally acting like fall, as we donned our long pants and boots. The chill in the air was just perfect to put us in the mood for exploring a corn maze and hunting for pumpkins! (September was absolutely GLORIOUS this year in Colorado, but it has not been very fall-like at all!)

We’ve been to Anderson Farms in the past, so I knew we’d have a great time. Pre-kid, we’d played there with other 20-somethings. Post-kid, we’d had a great time as a family. It’s a great place for people on all ends of the spectrum to have fun!

Here is a taste of what we experienced:

Ready to go? Maps? Check! ID Bracelets? Check! Ready to go!

Maps? Check! ID Bracelets? Check! Ready to go? Check!

We rocked it old-school. This WAS our GPS.

We rocked it old-school. This WAS our GPS.

We're lost! Just kidding. Momma's from Iowa. It's impossible to get truly lost in a cornfield.

We’re lost! Just kidding. Momma’s from Iowa. It’s impossible to get truly lost in a cornfield.

Maybe we go this way?

Maybe we go this way?

Maybe we go that way?

Maybe we go that way?

Let's go the other way!

Let’s go the other way!

After we had our fill of the corn maze, we hopped on a hayride and rode out to the pumpkin patch!

After we had our fill of the corn maze, we hopped on a hayride and rode out to the pumpkin patch!

We found these three gems in various parts of the field and gathered them together to make our final decision.

We found these three gems in various parts of the field and gathered them together to make our final decision.

Claire wanted the Ghost Pumpkin. Daddy wanted the Frankenstein Pumpkin, and I loved the little nibbly one. (The green one is deceptive HEAVY.)

Claire wanted the Ghost Pumpkin. Daddy wanted the Frankenstein Pumpkin, and I loved the little nibbly one. (The green one is deceptively HEAVY.)

Claire kept them safe for the ride back

Claire kept them safe for the ride back

Child Labor Laws are lax here, too! (This is our kind of place!)

Child Labor Laws are lax here, too! (This is our kind of place!)

Here's how they do the pricing. Not too shabby! (We had two larges and a small.)

Here’s how they do the pricing. Not too shabby! (We had two larges and a small.)

 

So, what are you waiting for, Colorado? I think fall may actually be here for a bit (before it changes its mind again). Go! Anderson Farms is a great way to get a taste of the fun parts of fall. Enjoy!

Anderson Farms Coupon

andersonmaze4x6The corn maze at Anderson Farms is one of our favorite activities to do when the days shorten and we slip closer to fall. This year, we’ve been invited to check it out in exchange for a review, so stay tuned!

In the meantime, here are some discount tickets if you’d like to check it out for yourself!

Meow

She just wants to be a cat

This is Claire’s outfit today. (I ♥ almost-10-yr-olds!)

The School Dress Code doesn’t cite “cat ears” specifically, but there is a “too distracting” loophole.

We’ll see if this passes inspection.
She’s such a rebel.

‪#‎meow‬

Edited to add an update! She had them on at Pick-Up! She got to wear them all day. “It’s just a headband, Mom. I don’t know why you were concerned…” she said with a wink. 😉

The Power of Poison – DMNS

Friday, Dad played hooky, and we all ran off to our favorite place: The Denver Museum of Nature & Science! We checked out the new Power of Poison exhibit. It’s fantastic!

Here are some of the pictures I took. Click to enlarge.

Here are some of the pictures I took. Click to enlarge.

Yes, those are real, live poison dart frogs!

My favorite part? The look on the elderly gentleman’s face when he scanned my ID card at the entrance, and I asked him if they were handing out free samples.

They weren’t.

Sadly.

Uh, I mean…allegedly.

🙂