Sorry to switch topics so abruptly from health issues, but … welcome to my blog! I get bored sticking to any one topic. Plus I’ve been extra sick this week and prefer not to think about illness when I’m at my worst. It might seem odd to go from describing a semi-homebound life to detailing transatlantic family vacations, but I deal with the downsides of illness by escaping into travel. Between researching future destinations, planning specific details, actually taking the trip, and then revisiting photos and warm memories, two good-sized trips can carry me psychologically through a whole year.
Our latest family escape was to London and Amsterdam this spring, and I’m excited to share a few tips and favorite photos over coming weeks….
My husband’s biggest goal for London was to see the British Museum. (“They stole all the best stuff, from all over the world, and it’s all in a single building!”) I was interested, but worried how that would go down with our 5-year-old. She’s in a tough zone where she’s too old to just toddle along with Mom and Dad but not old enough to appreciate museum exhibits in the way they were intended. We planned a weekend visit to take advantage of the museum’s Kid’s Activity Backpacks, but we got held up and arrived after they closed the program for the day. Vera was disappointed but still reasonably open-minded about the museum. We had ten minutes, tops, to come up with Plan B before she lost interest.
We sought out the famous Easter Island statue, which unexpectedly saved the day. I posed for a photo, copying the statue’s unique expression. Vera hid behind my leg:
But then, suddenly, Vera ran to another statue and said, “Daddy! Do like this one!” She and her father posed together, copying the position of the person in the statue. And then we did another. And another. And another.
In this way, we kept Vera busy through room after room. Mom and Dad were patient with the endless photo shoot (frankly, she wasn’t the only one having fun!), and in return Vera was patient (… mostly …) if Mom or Dad wandered off to look at something else or to read an explanatory card or two.
We even managed to take a few regular museum-y photos. Though not always exactly as planned — see, e.g., the photo-bomber who popped up unexpectedly in Daddy’s artsy archway shot:
Thanks to our super-tough, basically indestructible camera, we even handed the equipment over to Vera for some artistic creations of her own:
If you ever find yourself at a loss for how to keep a young one entertained at an adult museum, I highly recommend the family photo shoot! All it takes is a short lecture on respecting the artifacts (even mature kids may not realize they’re not allowed to touch), a camera, and your sense of imagination and fun.