Monday, November 07, 2011

Hidden Gems

 On Saturday we packed up the kids, and ventured out into the cold and fog to explore new local treasures, and were rewarded with some serious hidden gems (sorry for those who read my art blog too as this is a bit of a double post, though it was all about art on the other blog and all about the kiddos here)! We started out at the Maryhill Museum, which is this charming art museum with some pretty incredible history (like that Queen Marie of Romania dedicated it and donated royal stuffs, which the girlies loved) out in the middle of nowhere. I mean it's seriously in the middle of nowhere. I won't mention my disappointment that the winery just down the road, which is also in the middle of nowhere, had about 10x the visitors. But it was actually a blast for all, except perhaps the little man who couldn't be allowed to roam free touching everything he saw. There was a sweet Rodin exhibit downstairs, a Native American exhibit, and a post-WWII French fashion show in miniature among other things.
Then there was this great kids room, which was a serious hit. Here they are working on their self-portraits.
 And here, dude is clapping at the mess he's making. Whenever he knocks over towers, dumps things out, or otherwise creates chaos, he looks at us with a huge grin and claps. Boy.
Squint smile!
 And the girlies created Rodin-inspired sculptures out of tin foil which they promptly named Diana and Aphrodite. It's a long story.
Can you spot their portraits on the wall? Clue #1 - J's has red hair. Clue #2 - M's is right next to hers.
 Then we enjoyed the sculpture gardens outside where J showed off by reading all the plaques as my hands went very numb. Dang it was cold!
 Then we drove down the street to this enormous Stonehenge World War I Memorial built by the same guy that did the museum long time ago. It is designed to look like Stonehenge probably did back in it's heyday. Man those are some big rocks! Little man looked even smaller than normal, though that didn't stop him having a ball running around like a drunken sailor on the unsteady gravel, peek-a-booing around the stones.
 Oh, I hadn't mentioned this yet. I brought this new legal pads in the cars to keep the girls busy while we drove. They got very excited about them and insisted on bringing them everywhere to write down everything they liked. At each new room, they'd plop down in the  middle of the room and go to town. J brought hers to school today to share what she did this weekend. I'll scan some if it and post it later because it's some good entertainment. Love the spelling. Love what was interesting to them. Here M just made herself comfy to write about Stonehenge. Doesn't look so comfy to me.

 Daddy and dude running down the hill to check out the train. We hear trains all the time in The Dalles. Dude always stops whatever he's doing, points in some random direction and says, "da?" And when given the chance, watches them pass by with some serious intensity.
 Nice view, huh?
 Looking back up the hill at Stonehenge.
One of the plaques. There was another big one that listed all soldiers from Klickitat county (where it is) that lost their lives in WWI, along with an additional one that lists soldiers from the county that have died in all subsequent wars and those who were taken POW. This led to some intense discussions on the way home.
Again, nice view, eh? Although it all is more impressive when the usual sunny skies are out. Maybe next time. But if you ever happened to be looking for things to do in the Columbia Gorge, we recommend both of these!


Unknown said...

We are looking at doing the Polar Express Santa Train in your neck of the woods - sounds like something you all would enjoy, too!!

Anna Collett said...

What an awesome little find!! I just love the pictures. I love how adorable the girlies are with their legal pads, portraits, and sculptures. I love that Dude has the Berne squinty smile!