Monday, August 10, 2015

London: #KizziahsorBust

We said our good-byes to the Kizziah family on a Sunday night in October. We baked Pumpkin Bread and made a Mexican Salad, the kids wrestled and jumped all over Uncle David, and they took selfies, and Katie cried, and we hugged, and John David prayed for us. It was a sweet night.

The first travel information they received was a nonstop flight to Africa, but by the kind providence of God it was changed, and there was a 6-hour layover in London. So on the hottest day in England in 2015 we piled in our car with no air conditioner and drove to the big city. It was kind of a miserable drive. It was hot and stuffy, and we were sweaty, but we all hung in there because we had lots to look forward to.

This was our first time to take the kids to a big city, but I wasn't concerned about them the way I would have been before moving to England.  Walking is something they've grown accustomed to, so we had talks about Tube safety and staying together in the crowds, and we were off.  

Even though I knew the kids could handle some walking, I still didn't think hours of traipsing around the city would be the best thing for them.  We decided to spend hours traipsing around The Museum of Natural History instead.

The dinosaur exhibits were pretty awesome. And did I mention it was free?

Ella took lots of pictures to show John David.

Sabre-Tooth Tiger

This was a super-fun and impressive room when you first walked in and saw that big whale.

 I love that warthog's grin.

The elephants were true-to-life size, and there were interactive elements to the exhibits that kept the kids interested.  It was a really great afternoon marveling at all the Creator has made.

The museum is in a beautiful building, and if you've seen the Paddington Bear movie (as we just did last week), there are lots of scenes filmed here at the museum.  Ella thought it was creepy and scary that the scenes with the villain took place where she'd been.  KJ and I thought it was cool, though.

Gorgeous Stones!

I discovered during our two days of museum-visiting that these places made me feel small in a good way.  It's a vast universe with so, so many things I don't know or understand.

The giant redwood tree trunk had a timeline written on it of what was going on in the world during different parts of the tree's life.

I don't think all of the building was air-conditioned, but there were a few places that must have needed more constant temperatures, and boy did it feel good.  Look at that sweaty tousled hair on that boy.

When the museum closed at 5, I suggested going toward the Tower of London and eating there by the River Thames.  I knew it would give us a good view of the Tower Bridge as well.  All James could think about was the ice cream he'd been promised.

It was really delicious ice cream.

It was a perfect summer's night, and the kids were out past their bedtime, but we still had one more important stop to make.  Ella had a very specific list of things she wanted to do in London.

We were all pretty done-in at this point.  We went back to a hot hotel room (which thankfully had a ceiling fan!) and slept on top of the covers, eager to see our family on the next day, though that was not meant to be after all...

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