Saturday, August 29, 2009

Arizona Science Center, Phoenix AZ

If you are in Phoenix and looking for a great place to take your kids where they can run free and touch everything they see, the Arizona Science Center in downtown is the place for you! I visited the center today with my daughter and aged 10 and my infant that is 1 along with my Aunt K and Uncle M and their 1 year old also. I was worried at first that the babies wouldn't have anything to do and that they would be seriously bored, but it turned out to be just the opposite. With over 300 exhibits, an IMAX theater, and a planetarium there is definitely something for kids of all ages and those that are just a big kid at heart like.
One of the newest attractions is the SkyCycle. It's a bike that has a large counter weight below it and the bike balances on a cable. You ride this bike suspended about 15 feet in the air along the cable for an incredible physics lesson. My 10 year old did it and loved every minute of it, but beware there is an extra fee of $3 for members and $5 for non-members for this exhibit.

A free exhibit that you do not want to miss up on the third level is Forces of Nature. It is a platform that you stand on that shows a video every few minutes and it discusses forces found in nature such as earth quakes and lightening. The exhibit is totally interactive with a moving floor, real rain, heat waves and tornadoes!

In addition to the regular exhibits the center features special event exhibits that change regularly. Currently the feature exhibit is Lego Castel Adventure. There are costumes the kids can borrow while they enjoy the Lego Castle, slide and hands on building tables. There are also displays of detailed castles, gardens, and life size statues of armor and a dragon! This is a great place for the bigger kids but there is little for the smaller kids to do in this area. Runs until September 7, 2009.

The next exhibit that the center will feature is Robots The Interactive Exhibit based on the 20th Century Fox movie. The exhibit is all about robotics and shows what a world totally inhabited by mechanical beings might be like. Runs September 27, 2009 to February 14, 2010.

My overall impression of the center was very positive and there isn't much to say that is a negative. The elevator nearest to the SkyCycle is very slow, so you'll want to use the one at the other end of the hall which just happens to be right at the main entrance to the center anyway. Admission to the center is $12 for adults and $10 for kids 3-17 and for seniors. There is an additional fee for both the IMAX and the planetarium and they average about $8 per person. I did not visit the IMAX or the planetarium but Aunt K and Uncle M have and they tell me it’s fantastic and definitely worth a visit. There is a small cafe to get a snack at but I would skip it and enjoy one of the many other restaurants in downtown Phoenix for a much better meal and at a better price.

I need to come up with a cute rating system for the places that we visit, but since I haven't done that yet I'll just tell you that its a great place and definitely worth your trip!

Friday, August 28, 2009

...and the "fun" begins!

Hello all my peeps out there in blogger land! If you do not know already my husband is in the Air Force and we have received orders overseas to Germany. This is my new blog that will be totally dedicated to our journey of moving and living overseas in fabulous and luxurious military style....YEAH RIGHT! While there is A LOT to do, and an incredible amount of change for all of us involved in this move we are still excited to be able to live and travel and experience cultures in so many new places. The move to Germany will allow us to travel Europe and see all the places that we've dreamed of. The first thing that my daughter asked me, was, "Can we go to Paris?!" lol. She's really excited about traveling and can't wait to go to Paris.

We aren't leaving Tucson until approximately November 1, but everyone keeps asking me about the move. So I wanted to start the blog before that so everyone can see some of the things that we are going through to get ready. At this point we've had to apply for new passports and we've sold a lot of stuff that we aren't taking with us. Example: We didn't want to take our old heavy and ugly bedroom set so we sold it and now all our clothes that were in the dressers are now in suitcases in my room. It's hard living this glamorous life! We are going to get a new set but we just haven't decided on one yet. I am making a trip to Ikea this weekend, so I just might come home with a whole new house of furniture!

So the next step for us is having our house packed up and moved. Now, this wouldn't normally be a big deal but since our stuff is moving to Germany and a slow boat to Europe takes about 60-75 days to get there so our stuff is leaving before us. If we didn't have our household goods picked up and shipped until we leave, we would be waiting in Germany for it for about 2 months so having it leave a few weeks before us is the lesser of two evils. We will be in temporary housing for a few weeks, aka a tiny hotel room at the base hotel, before we go anyway. Before that we will be without most of our household goods, other than what we are keeping to put into storage, for about 6 weeks. That means we'll be air mattress sleeping, paper plate eating, and tiny TV watching for a long time before we go. Did I mention how glamorous the military life really is?

While I am excited about this move there is a ton of stuff to do still. Over the next few months I'll be posting regularly on the blog about the move and yes I will be posting lots of pictures too. We'll be visiting family, packing, selling more stuff we don't want to take, taking our car to San Diego to be shipping overseas, and so much more fun! If you have ever wondered what it takes to move to another country you aren't going to want to miss these posts so stay tuned!

Make sure you follow the blog, top of my page, click on FOLLOW, so that you can have the latest and greatest updates as they happen!