We were excited to see the new exhibit, and started talking it up to Ellie in advance, because I was worried that as soon as we walked inside she would freak out and not be able to enjoy a moment of the event. MOSH helped our efforts by installing a giant animatronic T-Rex in front of the museum a couple of days before the exhibit opening, and we walked past it several times in the days prior. To my surprise, Ellie was a little wary but not nearly terrified of him. We took to calling him "Buddy" (from "Dinosaur Train") and whenever he would roar we would say things like, "Oh, look! Buddy's saying hi to you! He wants to play with you!" Ellie totally bought into it and now she's forever telling me, "Mama, Buddy was saying, 'Hi, Ellie! I like your shoes!'" and such things, and she even does a high-pitched Buddy voice. So, I figured we had it made.
"Buddy" outside MOSH!
(For the record, this is Buddy from "Dinosaur Train" that the above T-Rex is named for:)
The resemblance is uncanny.
Regardless of Ellie's reaction to the actual dinosaurs, the preview event promised some other more easily-frightened-toddler-friendly activities. Upon arrival, we sought out the first of those: crafts! We stopped in the preschool room and crafted some dinosaur hats.
From there we made our way to the science theater for some liquid nitrogen ice cream. They were still setting up the theater when we got there, but not to worry: Ellie kept herself (and everyone else) entertained by running around like a crazy person, roaring at everyone.
Dinosaur Ellie on the loose
VIDEO: Dinosaur Ellie, roaring all over the place
Making the liquid nitrogen ice cream!
Then we went upstairs to see the actual dinosaurs exhibit. I had been marveling at how well Ellie was doing, until she refused to get in the elevator. She and I took the stairs, and as soon as we reached the exhibit, this happened:
And, so, this is how she chose to "enjoy" the exhibit:
See her in the stroller over there?
To be honest, she still did much better than I expected. She quietly sucked her thumb under the safety of her umbrella canopy and let us walk through the museum with nary a wail or tear. And of course, the next day she started telling us, "We forgot to see the dinosaurs at the 'seum! We didn't see them! We have to go back to the 'seum to see the dinosaurs!" And I'm all, "Hey, crazypants. The rest of us saw them!" We'll try again with her another day, though I can't say I expect much of a different result! Threenagers, am I right?
Anyway, the exhibit was really cool. All the dinosaurs were animatronic and I'm sure there was lots of cool information to be gathered on all the signage, but we didn't have that much time to spend. We did enjoy ourselves, though, and E.J.'s little pointer finger was going a mile a minute.
They were all roaring and moving and just being generally pretty cool.
T-Rex trying to be stealthy
It's possible we blew E.J.'s little mind.
After walking through the exhibit, we stopped for a quick session in the photobooth...
...before continuing the dress-up fun in the museum gift shop.
And then it was home and off to bed for our little baby dinosaurs!