We went up to the Children's Museum in Salt Lake last week. It was interesting. I love going and watching kids play and interact. I also like watching the parents and how they interact with their children. I learn a lot and try to find things that I can do better and things that I never want to do.
We'll start with the things that I never want to do. OK, what this really comes down to is a disdain for portable electronic devices. Lets start with cell phones. Dads were particularly guilty on this one. If you are going to take your kid to the Children's Museum, spend time with your kid. Take the obnoxious blue glowing growth out of your head and interact with your kid. Leave the cell phone in the car, is there really that much that is as important as spending time with your children? Of course if you're a doctor on call, it would be appropriate to have your cell phone, but the conversations I overheard were not medical emergencies. I fear that some fathers think that spending money to get their kids into the Children's Museum is their exhibition of love. I'll give you a hint, it's not the money, it's the time and interaction. While the Children's Museum offers some unique opportunities for interaction and exploration, entrance is only the monetary fee for a positive relationship.
I'm done bashing cell phones... Well almost. My next annoyance was digital cameras, which are often built into a cell phone for your convenience. I have nothing against recording images with a digital camera, but let the kids play! I don't know how many parents I saw rushing their kids around to each exhibit so that they could get a picture of their child posing (pretending to play, but looking at the camera), just to be pulled to the next exhibit to "play". Of course I recognize in this modern age that if there was no picture taken of an event, it never really happened (excuse the sarcasm). Why did you pay to go to the Children's Museum, to let your kid play, learn and have fun, or to get a different back drop for pictures? Just because I didn't like the people posing their children and moving them, doesn't mean that I'm against pictures, see, I even took a couple myself.
So here's the top of Six-Pence's head while he's playing with dominoes at the Children's Museum.
This is the Mugwump building a castle out of giant Legos. Notice the great view I got of the top of his head. No balding yet. Oh, and the giant Legos were really cool, just PLEASE don't get us any, could you imagine trying to store those things?
So what are you supposed to do at the Children's Museum? Here's my opinion... not that I'm opinionated. While I may have led you astray with my comments on cell phones, I don't think that you have to constantly play with your kids at the Children's Museum, especially if you play with them at home. You just have to be available to play. I like to let the kids run free and just follow them and watch how they interact. Often they will come interact with me and then I get a chance to play, but if they want to play with other children, that is fine as well. This works great for the next month, and then we'll have three kids. So how does that work if there are two parents and three kids? Anyway, I think that parents being available to their children is hugely important.
As I was getting the pictures from the Children's Museum, I found some others from a topic that I forgot to write about. Christmas. It was great, thanks to everyone who got us stuff, we appreciate it. This was a wonderful year because we didn't get any electric junk or commercialized toy stuff. I don't mind toys, but when the toys are all based on TV shows or movies, suddenly the toys are no longer imaginative, they are a marketing ploy. Anyway, we didn't get any and we're thankful for that. Here are a few pics.
That is Six-Pence dressed up as a frog. The boys love imagination and dressing up as things. Grammie did a WONDERFUL job making costumes for the boys, they are beautifully made and the boys love them. The only problem is that big brother steals the eye balls of from the frog and then makes the frog close his eyes and run around blind. Grammie is really smart, she sent four spare eyeballs in case some get lost.
The Mugwump can now dress up like a cowboy. While he loves the shirt, vest and chaps, we find him wearing the boots all over the place.
Look at this, both boys are looking toward the camera and one of them is even smiling. These pictures are rare. You can also see the truck that carries toy cars. The boys love that as well. I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas.