Sunday, November 22, 2009

A Day at the Pretend City Children's Museum

So, I do love my Discovery Toys business, and I love being a speech-language pathologist, but, in all honesty, my favorite thing in life is spending time with my awesome and adorable 2 year old daughter, Rachel.

We needed something to do today while Daddy worked a double shift so we decided to go to the Pretend City Children's Museum in Irvine, CA. Now, I know, I know, I've neglected my blog lately. But, when I have something totally cool that I've seen, I need share!

This is not your typical museum where you look, admire and then move on. Oh NO!! At Pretend City, your kid can touch anything and everything--and they are encouraged to do so! By the way, did you know that Speech Language Pathologists also look at PLAY skills during evaluations for young kids? It's true! Play, including pretend play, is related to speech and language development!

Rachel and I started our adventure at the grocery store. Rachel piled and piled (and piled) pretend food into her shopping basket. It was kind of funny to watch her realize she could (and should) play with everything! We skipped the check out line because Rachel saw the fruit and vegetables to be picked and planted in the next room--The Farm. She also checked out the not-so-pretend baby chicks!
Here she is planting and riding the tractor:

Rachel then caught a ride in a car and we traveled to her favorite part of Pretend City--the amphitheater! She hopped on stage and grabbed some instruments but didn't quite to know at first. That's the beauty of getting our kids involved with other kids--she figured out she was supposed to be rocking out by watching the other kids. Then, the test came!! Another kid wanted her instrument!! A lesson in sharing occurred with no bumps or blood. Phew!

I confused Rachel a little, telling her I wanted to go home--I meant to Pretend City's house! We wandered through the house, looking in cabinets, closets and drawers and cooked a little bit in the kitchen.

Next, we played at the beach, but a cool car caught Rachel's eye, so we moved on over past the gas station and to the Beach where she played in the sand. We passed right by the Park, Police Station and Fire Station over to the Marina. Rachel played in the water and discovered that fake fish float! So, she enjoyed holding it down under the water defying rules of flotation.

The doctor's office waiting room beckoned next, probably because of the cool books. When she went into the doctor's office, I think she took great pleasure in giving the baby doll a shot. Sweet revenge!! She must've been hungry, because we ended up at the little cafe serving pretend Vietnamese cuisine. She was distracted by the mop, however, and did a great job cleaning.

Although I had a great time NOT feeling the need to be overprotective-mama and let her run and lead the way, there was one place that I wanted to visit--the Art Studio! Ribbons, glue, markers and sequence galore!! Rachel made a beautiful princess crown. Such a fabulous room! I was amazed that Rachel sat and put markers away when she was done!! (now, how do I teacher her to do that at home???).

Rachel took one last run around Pretend City and ended up at her favorite place-the Amphitheater! More stomping, playing and singing. She had such a blast up on stage! She even tried to share her mic with another kid. :) Here is my star on-stage:

Pretend City is totally the type of museum I would've loved as a kid!! I know Rachel had a blast, too. We will definitely be back!! I think you should go too ;)
It's fun, inexpensive and (shhh...) educational!

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