Halloween the Chrysler Way


Halloween at the Chrysler Museum is one of my favorite things about the holiday. Each year, the staff dress up as works of art and wander the museum so visitors can find them. The costumes are always so creative and this year was no different, with staff dressing as works of contemporary and classical painting, sculpture, even glasswork! Each staff member gets to pick their art piece, and talking to them about how they came up with the concept of their costume is definitely part of the fun (this year's fave: the woman who covered herself in straw and roamed around as one of Monet's haystacks from the Agrarian Ideal exhibit going on now.)

The kids definitely enjoyed the special Halloween hunt, and marking off their finds on the scavenger hunt map (prize: candy) But they also enjoyed just spending time at the expanded play area at the back of the museum, and shuffling through the books, games, and toys there. Note to self: keep this in mind for blustery days this winter.

The Chrysler has some exciting programs for kids and families coming up this month, including Tickle My Ears, on Friday, November 3, and a wild-West themed Free Family Day on Saturday, November 12. More info here.

Hiking to Humpback Rocks (Waynesboro, VA)


James's new goal is to hike the entirety of the Appalachian Trail, and he's been doing a section here and a section there when he has the time. This past weekend, Gus, Anouk and I (and some of our friends) joined him for part of one, a hike up to Humpback Rocks in Waynesboro. It's about a three hour drive west on 64, almost to Charlottesville, so we decided to leave after breakfast and pack a lunch to carry up to the rocks with us.

It was a strenuous hike for little legs. Not impossible for a four, five, or six year old to do, but it's going to be a good challenge for them. The hike up to the rocks is only about a mile but it involves basically hiking straight up the side of a mountain, climbing stairs, and then picking your way over rocks. It took us about an hour each way with a 3 year old, two five year olds (and a toddler in a carrier on my back). But there were a lot of interesting things to see on the way -- lichens, fall foliage, caterpillars, caves. And the view from 2643 ft. was spectacular, so worth it.

After we got back down to flat(tish) ground, we walked back to the visitor center and explored the farm museum, a few old houses and grounds recreated from the 1850s. It was especially interesting for me and Anouk because we have been reading Little House on the Prairie lately and there are a lot of descriptions of the house that Pa built the family. We were able to see how the logs were notched and split, how pegs were used instead of nails, and how the walls were chinked with mud. Now when we read we feel like we can see it even better!

28th Annual Virginia Children's Festival


Hello, everyone! Today we're going to kick off our return to regular blogging with a recap of the 28th Annual Virginia Children's Festival in Town Point Park that we went to early in October. The festival is not only a wonderful experience in itself but a great way to sample the many kid-friendly vendors and programs around the HRVA area. We have really added to our to-do list after making our way around the many vendor booths and displays that were set up for us to visit.

Some favorites that we're still talking about weeks later: Mad Science and their demonstrations (friction! gravity! hypotheses!), Symphonicity and their instrument petting zoo, and the Hurrah Players singing hits from The School of Rock. We also painted pumpkin ornaments at the Color Me Mine table, crafted with SensoryAbled Kids, and arrrrr-ed with Pirates from the Moody Crewe. We toured the ODU Physics department's real-life science lab, visited the Norfolk Public Library's book mobile, and listened to the Virginia Opera performing Grimm's Fairy Tales.

Sometimes it takes seeing everything your home has to offer all together to make you realize how lucky you are to get to experience it all. We're looking forward to new explorations and adventures.

What have you discovered around these parts lately?

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