It’s amazing what we can see and do in a week’s time here. I think it’s because we don’t have the distractions of real life and can just go and do whatever we want. I love it. It’s not all rosy (trust me), but I’m so grateful for this rare opportunity to be this involved and present with my kids to go and see the world through their eyes. It’s priceless really.
We’re finding it’s necessary to get out of the apartment every day or we’ll go insane. We stayed home once. Not a good idea.
We’ve been checking out a lot of museums and parks lately. I’m pretty sure my kids will be “museumed” out by the time we’re done with this adventure. There’s just so many fascinating things to see, they really have the best of the best here. I love that most of them are free too so we can visit often or just go for a shorter visit, not trying to see everything in one day.
We checked out the British Museum which is enormous. The main display the boys wanted to see was the ancient Egyptian mummies–they were intrigued by what they saw. They even had mummified animals. There were x-ray pictures showing what was inside. Fascinating and creepy. There’s so much more to see here, but we made it a quick trip so we could hit the park while it’s sunny.
Museum of Childhood
We ventured over to the Museum of Childhood. Displayed are toys European children played with dating back to the 1600s to the present time. As you enter, there’s a wall of items children had expelled from school over the years, which the boys found quite interesting.
Jace loved the Star Wars collection, even though they didn’t have General Grievous. Nathan was hoping for a big Lego display, but they only had a tiny one. Guess they’re not as popular here. Cade liked the big robot on display that requires you to put the pieces of the clockwork correctly on his back to make it come alive. Tyler’s favorite things were the retro video games and army toys. It was eye-opening to see some of the games they required German kids to play in school during Hitler’s reign. I was amazed at the intricate doll houses, having loved mine as a child. The little boys were freaked out by all the baby dolls—they’re still getting over a scary story they read a year ago and seeing some of the creepy dolls here might make for some new nightmares!
Another cool park we found just down the street was Holland Park. They have an adventure playground with really cool toys that would never pass code in America. The park is huge. The grounds used to be part of a 500 acre historic home renamed the Holland House. It was bombed by the Germans in 1940 and most of it was destroyed. The only section still standing is used as a youth hostel. Tyler tried to find an opening to explore, but it’s all tightly boarded up. There is so much history here, it’s haunting almost to imagine what occurred…at this beautiful place that entertained royalty to what it is today.
They all loved the adventure playground. So glad this is a short walk from our apartment!
We daringly circled the peaceful Japanese gardens and saw huge goldfish and colorful peacocks. If I had the ability, I’d come here and read a good book—it was like a postcard.
The boys begged to go back to feed the birds at Kensington Gardens, but it was pretty packed and there were several loose dogs running around. I’ve noticed they don’t have leash laws here like the US. And there are so many dogs everywhere! Seeing the dogs made the boys miss Lily even more than they do, and they started feeding the dog bread instead. When the dog’s owner arrived, she was yelling in her British accent “You naughty, naughty little dog!” over and over and the boys felt bad for it. They found the cutest 10-week old puppy on its first adventure out and got to play with him for twenty minutes. They’re missing their dog a lot. I’m kind of enjoying the break, honestly.
Kensington Garden Pond