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Category Archives: Museums

Monet at the Legion of Honor

A few weeks ago, we headed down to San Francisco for a long weekend to see the special Claude Monet exhibit at the Legion of Honor museum. It was a collection of his early works–many of which I have not seen–so for this Impressionist aficionado, I was over the moon to view them.

The girls enjoyed seeing the collection too, and it was just the right length for shorter attention spans. {Although, Lucie slept through the first half in the Ergo with Steve carrying her. It was a pleasant surprise that she still fit inside!}

We read a bit about Monet together before visiting from one of my favorite childhood books, Linnea in Monet’s Garden. I’m pleased to say that the girls took to Linnea and her adventures in the garden just as I did when I was young.

There was another traveling exhibition that involved random pieces of artwork(?) plopped down in random place inside and outside the museum. That’s Evelyn sitting next to one right out front. She was very entertained by the sculpture pieces, and confused {as we were} about the randomosity of the ones we saw inside. Her questions increased tenfold and my inability to answer did the same.

We ran into our wedding photographer in front of the museum where she was shooting a couples’ engagement photos. We hadn’t seen her since she took our maternity photos when I was pregnant with Evelyn. She does such beautiful work, I wish she lived closer to us so we could have family photos done by her again.

Our trip to SF also included a wonderful picnic on the bleachers that overlook the Bay, and a quick run through Ghirardelli Square with chocolate samples, of course!

One of the little shops on the Square had this tic-tac-toe game created with rocks and washi tape. The girls were in love. We’re searching for suitable flat rocks to make some of our own.

We crossed over the Golden Gate towards the end of the day for more adventures which I’ll share in my next post….

#write31days ~ Day 6: Artful Tot

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artful-tot-october 7

The Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento does a monthly program called Artful Tot which the girls are huge fans of {as is mama since she doesn’t have to clean up the majority of the mess!}. We attended this morning where they had a wonderful selection of activities, including vegetable and fruit painting, making tracks with farm animals, and water painting. The latter was done on a Buddha board {also made in a mini version}. I’d never seen these before but they’re amazing. Definitely going to consider for Christmas gifting!

Gave these a little extra contrast in post-processing to emphasize all the beautiful colors happening in these pictures! 🙂

Moments {Vol. 5}

I was a bit MIA this past week with all the holiday festivities….here’s a bit of what was happening.

mommy-daughter date
Evey and I snuck away for a mimi-daughter date last weekend. It’s very important to me that she doesn’t feel neglected despite all the attention that I must give Lucie these days. She loves going out for little treats at “the mermaid” {Starbucks}. Fills my heart up too. <3

royal selfie

Lucie got some special mommy time this past week too {thanks to my awesome brothers and wonderful MIL!}. We went down to San Francisco to see the Houghton Hall exhibit at the Legion of Honor. There were beautiful artifacts on display from an English manor house à la Downton Abbey. We snapped a photo in this gorgeous mirror in honor of all the lords and ladies who had viewed themselves within it.

do you want to build a snowman

Evelyn has been rather obsessed with snowmen lately. I think I mentioned that she was heartbroken after reading The Snowman and finding that he melted at the end. We’re doing our darndest to fix this childhood trauma. Steve’s latest attempt was to build her this snowman out of paper towels, tape and a popsicle stick. She’s been bringing it to bed ever since. 🙂

grilling the turkey 1

grilling the turkey 2

Turkey Day was wonderful in every way. We had a quiet evening at home. Steve cooked the bird on the grill which fantastically  left the oven free for me to cook the other additions.  We had a wonderful array of foods we feasted on…and will be for the next week or so. 😉

listening to carolers

The evening after Thanksgiving we went up to Grass Valley for the opening night of the Cornish Christmas festival. We feasted on Cornish pasties and hot chocolate (with whipped cream, of course!). Evey enjoyed the carolers and is still talking about them.

Lucie goosie

Lucie, our outgoing, little extrovert, refused to be fed as she preferred to engage with the passerby.

whipped cream in the mouth

And speaking of hot chocolate and whipped cream, we enjoyed some again {not complaining} this weekend as we watched our newest Christmas film. One of our Christmas traditions is watching a new (to us) Christmas movie while wearing our new Christmas pajamas. Hot chocolate while viewing just heightened the experience. It will have to be added on in the future.

new kitchen!

Christmas came a wee bit early for Evey this year. A friend of mine was selling this kitchen set for a song as her daughter has outgrown it, and we jumped on it! This girl loves to bake so hopefully this will fulfill some of her need to be in the kitchen when it is difficult for me to involve her in what I’m doing.

sleep striking

And this one. She used to be such a good sleeper but has now thrown me for a loop. Ever since she began to discover the world around her, no longer is she interested in sleeping at night. We have regular conversation (loud squuuuuealing!) every morning sometime starting between 2 and 4, and she usually goes back to sleep once everyone else begins to get up. Needless to say, I’m a bit blurry-eyed and fuzzy brained-right now. Tips for ending this madness??

Museum Exploration with Young Children

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Visiting museums with young ones can be intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. With a little planning and prepping, the visit can go well and you might actually enjoy yourself too!

legion of honor painting

A couple weeks ago, we accompanied Steve on the train down to Sacramento for the day, so that we could visit the Crocker Art Museum downtown. {Stay tuned tomorrow for a special guest post from a friend of mine on how to travel by train with young children!}

on train with daddy

with mommy on train

I had done my research and discovered that they do a special, hands-on toddler art class called Artful Tot {and others different days for older kids} on the first Tuesday of every month. Evelyn is beginning to enjoy the crafting process so I signed us up to go.

out the window

We arrived about an hour early in order to explore the artwork before class started. We meandered through the galleries taking time to stop at a few favorites along the way and discuss what we were seeing. Evelyn talked to me about what colors she predominately saw in certain paintings and what objects were depicted in statues.

look!

so many colors

She even took a few moments while I stopped to nurse Lucie to discuss with Pooh Bear the finer points of art viewing. 😉

Pooh museum tour

The toddler art class was fantastic! They had five different projects going at once which the kids could switch between at their own speed. Evelyn’s favorites were rolling and stamping playdough with various stamps and painting with a large dot brush.

dot art

stamping playdough

spilling the beans

We also encountered glue for the first time, and she was confused as to why it didn’t work like stickers after it dried {i.e. you couldn’t replace it once you removed it}.

gluing

We stopped in the courtyard for a snack after class before making the trek to Steve’s workplace to meet him for lunch. All in all, I believe we spent about two hours at the museum, a sufficient amount of time to explore much but not get overwhelmed.

 

baby and art

To recap, some quick tips to help you enjoy a museum visit with your young children:

  • Spend some time beforehand doing research on what to expect when you’re there. Grab a map at the front to figure out where bathroom and rest stops can occur. Tickets are often free or deeply discounted for young children.
  • Take advantage of children’s programs at the museum. This includes literature. They had a great pamphlet at the Crocker that explained how to enjoy the artwork with children as young as Lucie’s age!
  • Bring snacks and take frequent breaks so children (and you!) don’t overtire. Make sure to do it in an area designated for food, though, if you’ll be eating and/or drinking. {They frown upon that in the galleries.}
  • Discuss what you are seeing with your child. Engage them in the works. Don’t do this with every one or you will burn out quickly, but stop when they show some interest or point out something in one that you know will be of interest to them.
  • Bring a stroller, if they are allowed {check because sometimes they’re not} or a baby carrier or wrap. You can’t back carry with little ones for fear they might damage paintings inadvertently, but you can do front carrys. I swapped the girls back and forth between a stroller and Ergo. {I explored the Getty Museum with Evey when she was about two months old for half a day, carrying her in the Ergo, and it went splendidly.}
  • But most of all…ENJOY! 🙂

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