Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Year of the Museum

This year we are visiting a museum each month. In January, we started our year off at Pixar and looked at the paintings, digital paintings and sculptures of the Cars 2 movie. I made them a museum scavenger hunt that they used when looking at all of the art.


February we visited the Clayton Museum where the kids learned about it's founder, Joel Clayton. He had nine children and founded Clayton in 1857. Sadly, five of his children died childhood diseases. The museum had a display of candy and the most giant pez collection. It also had some historical clothing, tools, and other household items that would be found in that time period.


In March, we visited the Oakland Museum of California. I didn't know what to expect, having never visited there before. It turned out to be a really fun museum with lots of things for the kids to explore and learn about the History of California.


At the beginning of the museum it showed the kids a green sticker with a hand on it are the things that can be touched. I really liked how they organized that. The kids new that if it had a green sticker on it, they could touch it.


They also had many parts where the kids got to write answers to particular questions on sticky notes or paper and then hang up their answer for others to see. Other parts of the museum had books where they could write things in. They could flip through the pages and see what everyone else wrote.


I think the favorite part was when we found the section on movies and film making. The kids could use pictures of animals and people to make an animated short film. They got to record and stop the recording as they moved the people and animals. There was also a Foley stage where they did the sound effects to an old western movie.


We went upstairs to the art gallery which had a ton of different types of art genres. Mia was the most fascinating to watch. At one point, Ben told me to go slower because Mia was being rushed. She enjoyed staring at the picture and studying the different textures. She told us her favorite pieces where the bright colored ones.

We also came to a section where there were these giant pieces of canvas, several feet high in height and width. The canvas was painted with one color. There are no pictures just a completely covered painted canvas. Ben commented, "I don't consider that art." I agree with him.

There was another piece that looked to be on a long sheet of brown "paper bag" looking paper and all it had on it down the middle of it was scribbled repeated vertical lines of pencil. Looked like a horses tail. Ben told me that wasn't art either. Someone thought it was art and put it in this museum. They even had a photograph of the artist sitting on the ground drawing lines as far as he could reach. . .with a pencil.

We are enjoying this year's adventure and hope to visit many new and different museums in the Bay area. We are so lucky to have so many museums to visit!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Aunt Autumn

My sister Autumn came to visit us last week. It was a spontaneous visit and when the kids heard that she was coming, that is all I heard about for the entire week.

'When will Autumn come?"

"Why isn't she staying all week?"

Mia was the one who was the most concerned that she wasn't staying with us and that she would only be coming to visit a day or two.

The day, Autumn came to dinner, her and Xander decorated the garage for her arrival. They were so excited to meet her boyfriend and see her again. It's been about 3 years since I have seen my sister.


We had a great time catching up and reminiscing about our childhood and talking about our family and life. CJ was delighted that she has surpassed yet another aunt in height. Autumn has a great laugh and smile and it was so fun to be around her.


Mia once again, decorated the door and made the cutest note in the world! My favorite part is the, "I love you to my heart." Mia is very tender and describes her feelings in her heart. Such a sweet girl!


They did all the tourist things on their own and came back to play with the kids. Mia was so excited and told me that today was her favorite day. I told Autumn that you have to take the kids somewhere because somehow they are expecting it. It had been raining all week and so the plan to go to the park was foiled. They ended up going bowling and it sounds like the kids all beat Autumn!

It was great to see you Autumn!