First children are bound to feel neglected and resentful at times when a younger sibling comes along. So far, Claire has been doing splendidly with the addition of Aerin into our lives, but there are moments here and there where I can see the sadness in her eyes when we are preoccupied with Aerin. 🙁
To help her know that we will never stop loving her, this past Sunday, we decided to give Claire some “alone” time with mommy and daddy by taking her to the Liberty Science Center. (J’s parents graciously agreed to watch Aerin while we were out.) We actually live just 15 minutes away from this wonderful, interactive science museum and I had been dying to take Claire for ages.
The Liberty Science Center is New Jersey’s largest and newest museum, and also houses
the nation’s largest IMAX Dome.
The entrance to the Science Center is grand, with an expanding & collapsing sphere by Chuck Hoberman. We spent quite some time in the main lobby so that Claire could stare up at the sphere. I think she could have spent hours there if we hadn’t dragged her away.
Claire is still too young to enjoy the majority of the museum. The very first exhibit we entered was called Energy Quest, which explores various types of energy, and our overly shy and cautious daughter seemed more scared than captivated by the loud and startling stations.
So we decided to move on to Our Hudson Home, which we knew housed some large fishtanks, and score! She LOVED it.
(Before I go on, I must apologize for the quality of the following pictures. Someone — ahem! — forgot to check the battery on our camera before we left the house, so all the photos from this outing were taken with a cell phone camera.)
She loved the fish so much that even when we had seen everything and tried to exit the exhibition, she repeatedly turned around to go back for more.
Other highlights of the day included a floating beach ball…
And an exhibition called Eat and Be Eaten which had more live animals.
As stated above, most of the exhibitions were much too advanced for our 16-month-old. However, whenever we saw a button we let her press it. She loves buttons (she even knows which buttons to press for our building’s elevator!) and pressing each one to see an interactive display unfold made her squeal and clap on more than one occasion.
It makes me sad to think that she might not know what these are when she grows up.
We would have loved to have visited the I Explore exhibition, which is specifically designed for kids aged 2-5, but there was a private party going on there at the time. 🙁 There’s always next time, right?
J and I have agreed that we will almost definitely be purchasing a family membership to the Liberty Science Center when our kids get a bit older. We may even plan a birthday party there — I checked, and the prices aren’t as exorbitant as I had feared.
In the meantime, I plan to continue to visit with my eldest in tow whenever we need some “mommy & me” time…..and when Aerin gets old enough to appreciate the Science Center too, I am guessing that we will be making numerous family trips.
What a good idea to give Claire some Mommy and Daddy time!! It looks like she still had fun even though she’s still a little young for it. When we get back to Jersey, I’ll have to check the museum out, it sounds awesome!
I loved the Liberty Science Center as a kid and I can’t wait to take my daughter.
You should also try the Museum of Science in Queens. They also have a section specifically for toddlers and they have a really cool science playground! The playground is enjoyable even for little kids with a parents help.
We definitely plan on visiting the Museum of Science when Claire starts appreciating car rides more (Queens is more than an hour away by car, and with the usual traffic it’s usually closer to 2 hours). Right now, whenever we drive anywhere more than 15 minutes away she will start whining and screaming in the car seat. Most kids seem to love car rides, but she’s always hated them. 🙁
How fun!!! I miss you guys.
She’s so cute! BTW lovin all the blog entries recently! Keep up the great work!
So cute! Science museums are awesome…i confess to have had memberships to some even though i dont have kids yet! They are fun 🙂
I remember going to Liberty Science Center when I was younger. Wonderful museum!
Argh I just wanna pinch Claire’s chubby little cheeks. 😛
What a fun trip! It looks like Claire had such an amazing time – centers like that are such an amazing place for kids. 🙂 I also think it’s great that you carved out special time just for her – as an oldest of four, I know I appreciated when my parents did the same for me when I was growing up.
I actually got the idea from an old episode of “Jon and Kate Plus Eight.” They were talking about how they plan these “alone” days for each kid, and I told myself that if I have more than one child, I will start doing that too. 🙂
She is so stinking cute! What a fun outing for her 🙂
I love the Liberty Science Center! I remember going there when I was young and I was so inspired. That’s awesome that Claire is so into it – I took my nephew to the aquarium and he didn’t really care 🙁 Yay for geeky kids!
Hello! Been following your blog for a little while now. I always tell myself I should leave a comment to follow your example in resolving to comment and feedback more in the online community. But you know how it is, you read an entry in google reader, then decide to come back to it later, but never do. But this time I decided to ACT on it because I really like your resolution to have more private mummy (and daddy) time with your first child. I really MUST remember this when the time comes for us to have our second one down the track. Thanks for the inspiration.
Sounds like a lovely day out… random question though; why does it make you sad to think Claire will one day know what a telephone is for? I don’t have kids myself, but two adorable neices (aged 4 and 1) and the elder one LOVES using the phone, and it is a delight to chat with her on it!
My mistake. I had meant she might not know what they are, since they are old-fashioned phones you hardly see anymore. Thanks for pointing out the mistake — I’ve corrected it.
Aah, my mistake – I foolishly didn’t consider it to be a typo! Thanks for responding 🙂