The Museum of Natural History

Every few months we hop on the subway and make the half hour trip to the Upper West Side of Manhattan, where there is a building that is so magical that there are even dinosaurs crawling up the walls in the subway station.

The Museum of Natural History is one of those gems, those places that you can visit over and over again and always find something new.

 From the grand entrance hall, where dinosaur bones dance....

To the room after room of animal dioramas, there is something entrancing in every direction. The first time I brought Jasper to the museum was when he was less than two. My boy has always loved animals, and he spent that first visit running from display to display wide-eyed. Now, at 6, he knows the museum so well that last week he asked to lead us on a tour for our visit, leading us first to the hall of African animals,

Where he walked us from window to window explaining the name and habitat of each animal. His knowledge is extensive, and growing, I see how much he has learned and memorized from Frank and I reading to him about animals. It was such a proud moment for this mama, and I am thrilled to watch his interest growing. When I asked Jasper what he will miss when we move, he said "The natural history museum." I think that really shows his priorities!

Behind each glass there is a far off land, each diorama is really a work of art, and I have always thought that those paintings in the background are stunning!

Next we were off to the Butterfly exhibit, where we walked into a tropical-hot room full of fluttering butterflies. So beautiful! We wanted them to land on us, but were not so lucky, they preferred the bowls of fruit scattered around the room. Right outside, I spotted my favorite part of this visit, which was a case full of all types of Blue Morpho Butterflies, glowing like jewels....

Then we moved on to the Hall of Biodiversity, another of our favorites, it shows examples of all of the amazingly diverse types of creatures on our planet, that room always knocks my socks off,

From there we like to visit the actual size Blue Whale in the Hall of Ocean Life, with more amazing dioramas featuring the sea and its creatures.

When we visit I try to limit our time there to around two hours, as there is so much to take in that it can become overwhelming in its magnificence. So, after lunch we headed out, back down into the magical subway station where a coral reef was awaiting us,

Starting our ride home with some subway silliness.