Thursday, April 19, 2012

SeaLife Aquarium Kansas City Field Trip

Head here to find out about Homeschool Week at Crown Center and how SeaLife fits into that!

Dang, this post contains just about all the categories I have for my blog posts. It's about EVERYTHING. That's what happens when you spend over 5 hours at Kansas City's Crown Center with 5 children (division problem; the answer is one hour per kid)!

Okay, FOCUS, Kerrie. I have to focus JUST on the SeaLife Aquarium for you today. Get ready for lots of pictures (no flash allowed, so they aren't all fabulous, but you'll get the idea).

We went on a field trip with other homeschoolers on a Monday and were supposed to get in at 11:00. I had Googled the place before we went so I could get a little map and find out what to expect. Tickets are normally $19/adults and $15/kids if you just walk in the door, cheaper with a pass (only like $200 for a family of four ... holy crap!). With our homeschool group we paid less than $7 per person. I got me and my peeps in for $38.50 to be exact.

I would suggest buying the pass when the frenzy dies down, though, and perhaps don't go near the place in the summer when all the kids are out of school because this place was CRAWLING with people on a Monday, and school was in, folks. It was field trip craziness and kids just kept coming out the door. We waited in line for an hour before we got in! No small feat with a bunch of little kids, you know! But I travel prepared with all-natural Aldi fruit snacks (not because we eat well but so I can hand them out to other moms who might need something to make their kids happy) and juice pouches. And Valium. Just kidding!

The first thing you see when you get in the building (after the fish tank with blowfish in it) is ... YOURSELF! You have to keep waiting in line so you can watch people get their photo taken and then get yours taken. The kids are just dying to get in and you have to take a freaking picture! I took the ticket but probably lost it. You can view and buy photos online if you want them.
And now our tour begins ... I'm sure I didn't capture the full effect of coolness of the place, but EXCUSE ME, I was trying to keep 5 people in my sight in a dark place!!!! After that, going on The Amazing Race would be no problem!

Can you spot my extra kid?!

TIP: Take socks if you go, even in the dead of summer when your kids are wearing flip-flops. My kids did not get to play on the indoor play equipment because a bouncer (no joke!) was booting kids with no socks. It was a sad time, but it taught me a lesson for sure. The promise of Fritz's for lunch and a visit to the gift shop to drop a bunch of money got my kids outta the play area fast, though :-) (bribery/reward is my parenting style; don't judge).

Tip for SeaLife folks: You need to hand parents a cocktail as they leave the place.

It took us about an hour to get through the place, but if it wasn't crowded we could have easily doubled that time learning and watching.

The kids said it was the best day of their lives except for Daddy not being with us. It was the best day of my life because I got to hang with my kids AND a woman asked what's my secret because my kids are so friendly and happy and well-behaved!!! I was like, "Um, they aren't like this all the time!"

Any questions from the audience?

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