A Friday Field Trip: Dallas Arboretum!
Spring is in the air in Dallas! Which means it's now in the mid-80s! WOOT!! Now that Spring Break is over I thought it might be a good time to go to the Dallas Arboretum. They currently have 7 fairy tale castles on display that I thought the boys would enjoy seeing. This place is NOT cheap, by the way. It's $7 per car for parking, $12 each adult admission, and $8 each child 8-11 years old. So, $27 for the three of us to go. We brought our lunches, but they do have a cafe if you're on a spending spree.
So, apparently every retiree within a hundred mile radius or good traveling distance by tour bus also had the same idea. I could barely get in! I like grandmothers as much as the next person, but we were nearly trampled several times by large pulsing crowds shoving past us in a cloud of perfume.
The first castle we saw was Aladdin's castle. This one was pretty cool and one of my favorites. Although you can't see it because of the openness of the design, the walls are actually TWO walls next to one another, so you can walk between them. Since the walls are in a spiral form, it's like walking in a maze!
Another view of the mad crowd. This reminds me of an Easter Egg hunt for some reason.
Another view of the castle.
Inside the walls-
The next castle was the Little Mermaid castle. None of us were impressed with this one, much. It was decorated with an undersea motif, but the main castle had nothing to do with undersea or mermaids. It was just a big block with stuff stuck on it. Like, maybe the designer usually only designs in 2D and had no clue how to make a 3D things, so they just stuck 2D designs on box? I dunno....lame.
This chair was the most interesting thing. I think using the transparent corrugated roofing for the back was very clever. Aldous decline having his picture made here.
Both boys LOVED this one, but they love tiny houses. This is the Jack and the Beanstalk Castle. The cleverest thing here is that awesome metal "beanstalk" with the giant's castle on top. The little house was cute but ordinary.
The maddening crowd.
A picture of some tulips. They actually have tons of beautiful landscaping and flowers, trees, shrubs, etc that you would expect at a botanical garden.
The boys also loved this fountain.
They were disturbed by the rule-breakers. At fountains and artworks, they always look for the signs and have me read them. There was also a much larger sign that said to not climb the artworks, and to not play in the water.
Aldous checks out a sprinkler wihile another unmonitored child breaks the rules.
William had been sick a couple days before and was a bit tired, and stopped to weep a little bit. Aldous was annoyed and just wanted to move on. I carried William to the next thing, while he regained his composure.
The next one was Rapunzel's Castle. It was sort of funny: there was an exit for princesses and one for princes. all of the children seemed to prefer this exit, and they used it as an entrance.
This is the prince exit.
ooh, is he actually going to use this an exit?
Here is Rapunzel's hair, which we all found kind of creepy.
This is the Princess and the Pea castle. The boys spent a total of 2 minutes here. I don't think Aldous spent that long.
They were lured away by the nearby drain.
Here's the Beauty and the Beast castle. I'm not sure what the boys are doing here.
Aldous stopped to do a little karate before moving on.
What a pansy.
Aldous on the move!
The outside of this one was really fun, and the boys liked that it looked like a "castle"
After that one, we headed to the amphitheater area to have some lunch.
pretty grassy view
Aldous made a little friend.
Boys running off some steam.
beautiful water! That's the lake out in the distance.
Our last stop was the pioneer village.
an interesting tipi, made of canvas.
Aldous taking a bath
a sod house.
"why, yes, I'd love some coffee"
William found the escape hatch
Back for more coffee. It's better if you both sit in the same chair, right?
It's getting close to leaving time when a fight breaks out.
Fixing some lunch!
Another pioneer lunch.
Posing on the porch.
Then we saw a snake!! See his face looking right at the camera? A woman on a rascal freaked out and almost whacked him with her cane.
Some other women who weren't as afraid gathered around to look at it. They wondered aloud if it was a coral snake, and if it had a triangular head. I pointed out that this snake had stripes, not bands, and recited the poem "Red touches yellow; kill a fellow. Red touches black; friend to Jack" regarding whether or not a banded snake might be venomous. They were so enthralled they had me repeat it. REALLY??? ***shaking head***....cityfolk....
And one last house!
William cooked a lot of meals...right after this picture, a couple happened along, and sat at the table while William and Aldous fixed their food for them.
See this, greedy, spoiled kids?
This is some of the "chicken" the boys cooked for their guests.
This was the next exhibit, I'm not sure what it was about.
We all had a great time here, and this will make it into our rotation for summer activities, for sure! We may get a membership, since the individual membership is only $68 and includes free parking and entry for two. Aldous is free for a while. So, one visit cost us $27, two visits would cost us $54, and three would be $81...so it would make a bit more sense to get the membership if we're going to go more than two more times.
at 9:43 AM