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Natural History Museum

Los Angeles, California:  Dave and I had volunteered to watch the kids all day Monday as Lisa had a huge project to complete and Lenny was at work. What to do with the kids all day in 104-degree heat?

I don't suppose we could have plopped them in front of the television all day? No matter how excited Lucy gets when she sees Mickey Mouse, television is rarely allowed in this house... too hot for the zoo... couldn't take them to a swimming pool because we hadn't thought to bring bathers. So...

The very well air conditioned Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County! We have been to this lovely museum several times before, and one of these days we need to visit sans toddlers so we explore every room and even read a few descriptive signs. The museum sits between the USC campus and the Los Angeles Coliseum.

Our first stop was a tour through the African and North American halls, lined with dioramas of taxidermified animals.

Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County

Lucy, checking-out the bison

Kudo exhibit in the African area

Black Rhinoceros

Then it was lunch time, so we took our hungry explorers down to the pretty-decent cafe in the basement for grilled cheese sandwiches and salads. Leo is crazy for salads this week. On the same level, the museum has a wonderful area for "future scientists" to explore - displays of bugs, snakes, animals and birds that are found in the Los Angeles area. Leo is fascinated by the series of tubes that house rats - and the rat "cage" is filled with assorted food packaging "garbage", (hopefully) letting the teeny visitors realize what happens when you don't keep things neat and tidy?

Lucy looks at a coachroach

Leo face, as I explain taxidermy

Butterflies and Beetles

Next it was on to Leo's favorite area of the museum - dinosaurs. Dave tailed Leo and I followed Lucy.

If you are ever in the area, do take time to explore the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles. Like the Santa Anita racetrack, the building alone is worth the visit.

The kids were delivered back to their Mom late afternoon. They had been so well behaved while with their grandparents. Lenny returned from work and Lisa made us all delicious salads, topped with sliced "chicken" strips.

After dinner, DT and I flew back to Portland. Our rare late night flight afforded us the opportunity to spend all day with our perfect and adorable grandchildren, and we were also treated to an amazing view of the rare Strawberry Moon - a full moon on the summer solstice - from the airplane window. Wow.

Until my next update, I remain, your exhausted correspondent.