Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Creation Museum

{Uncle Joe with all his nephews and nieces in front of the museum}

So, over a week ago I promised I'd be posting about our Ohio trip . . . and finally, I'm getting around to it. I had to shrink a bunch of pictures, and I seemed to have trouble getting started with that! But I finally finished it, and today looks like a good, lazy Saturday to do some blogging.

I decided to start with a post about one of the biggest highlights of our trip: our visit to the Creation Museum near Cincinnati! We were thrilled to have the opportunity to go there, thanks to the generosity of some of our family members (you know who you are--thanks again!! :)). There is so much I could say about this fabulous museum, but I'll mostly let the pictures tell the story, along with some chatter mixed in, of course. :)

We left Jim's parents' house early Monday morning. Our day got off to an interesting start when Julia woke up complaining that her tummy hurt. I hoped she was just hungry, so I gave her breakfast right away. She ate a little bit, then complained some more, so I told her to lie down for a while and see if that helped. Within a few minutes, she was running to the bathroom to throw up . . . hmmm, wonderful. Such a great way to start our day! I'm still not sure what was wrong, but thanks to my sister-in-law's encouragement we decided to take a chance and bring her along, hoping that she wouldn't get sick again. We covered the car around her with towels, just in case. :) I'm so glad we took that chance, because she was totally fine the rest of the day!

It took us about 3.5 hours to drive to the museum. I'd never been to Cincinnati before, nor to Kentucky (where the museum is actually located--though it's just barely over the border), so now I can cross another state off my list. :) That part of Ohio is a LOT flatter than where Jim's family lives!

We got to the museum around 11 am, I think. After getting our tickets, we had to decide what to do first. The men (Jim, and his brothers Josh and Joe) and Isaac (oldest nephew) were going to the planetarium show at 12:30, and they had to get in line by 12:15, so we decided to eat an early lunch first. The museum does allow you to bring in your own food, but we opted to go the easy route and eat at one of their cafes. We chose the Lakeside Grill, which serves hamburgers, hot dogs, etc. We all ordered cheeseburgers and they were wonderful--very homemade tasting, not typical fast food. The prices were a little higher than fast food, of course, but you get what you pay for. :)
After we ate, Joanne and I took all the kids except Isaac to the botanical gardens, while the guys went to the planetarium show. If we go again someday when the kids are older, I would love to do the planetarium as well . . . but it would have been difficult with all the little kids. Even Isaac (8 years old) wasn't big enough to keep his seat tipped back to the proper angle for viewing, so it would have been impossible and frustrating for the littler ones!

The botanical gardens were beautiful. In fact, all of the grounds and the museum itself were beautiful! You can tell that a lot of work, time, money and thought have gone into this place to make it as nice as possible. The gardens are in back of the museum, across the little lake. {Back of the museum, viewed from the gardens}
There are paths winding through them, swinging bridges (which two of my kids were way too terrified to cross), and a lovely arbor with places to sit. The petting zoo is also back here, to the left of the garden. The kids really enjoyed getting to see the animals! They had alpacas, goats, sheep, various birds (Julia and Ruth were each given a peacock feather!), zorses (zebra/horse cross), a camel, and probably a bunch more that I can't think of right now.
After exploring the petting zoo and gardens for a while, we were all very HOT, and thankful to see the guys when they came to find us after they were done with the planetarium. We all headed back into the museum for the self-guided tour. It was nice and cool and comfortable in there, a nice change from outside. :)

In the main hall of the museum, there is plenty to see before starting the walk through history. This impressive mastodon skeleton is amazing. It was discovered in Newark Ohio in 1989, and is one of the most complete mastodons ever found. (This is a cast made from the original.)There are also lots of dinosaur models here and there, including these:
and this one above the entrance to the bookstore.
Then we started the walk through history. This is the main part of the museum, and the part I loved most! Actually, before we started with Creation, there was this room dedicated to fossils and explaining about how they search for fossils, etc. There was even a real fossil that the kids could touch.In the walk through history, you follow this timeline of the seven "Cs": Creation, Corruption, Catastrophe, Confusion, Christ, Cross, Consummation. This takes us from the beginning of time to the present. (Click on the picture to enlarge, if you want to see it better.)Then came the Garden of Eden. The depictions of Eden were amazing . . . and really brought the story of Creation to life for me. There was also a short movie of the six days of Creation, and an even shorter movie depicting the creation of Adam. Both were really good.

Continuing along, we saw Noah's Ark (this is a small model of it--they also had a large scale section detailing the construction of it):
And there was tons more to see, too. We walked by Methuselah, Moses (I think), David, and many other Bible characters from the Old Testament, then progressed to the New Testament and depictions of Jesus' birth, ministry and death. There was also a very powerful short movie focused on Christ's death, which clearly presented the good news of salvation. Unfortunately there was way more to see than I had time to take pictures of!

I thought this painting was a good summation of modern times:
It's so true. We've wandered so far from our Biblical foundations. In today's society, there are no absolutes . . .

Near the end of the tour, we came upon more dinosaurs:
And we ended up in the bookstore, but it was really crowded so we didn't get to browse as much as we would have liked. Maybe next time!

To wrap up this very long post, the Creation Museum is amazing. We spent between 4-5 hours there, and even so we were not able to absorb everything. There was so much to read and learn, so much to see . . . and with young children along, there was just no way to take our time enough to do it all. (Not that we regret taking the kids for one minute! They loved it too! It's just that I can see how much more meaningful it would be to them as teens, and I would love to go back for another visit when they're older.) I loved how the museum is completely based on Scripture. The signs and posters continually point everything back to God's Word--the ultimate source of Truth. I highly recommend a visit to this wonderful place, if you ever happen to be in the Cincinnati area!! If you're not likely to take a trip there, you can buy a DVD of the museum experience--which I haven't seen, but I imagine that it's well done. Nothing beats being able to go in real life, though, if you have the chance! I am so grateful that we had the opportunity.


Anonymous said...

Hi Carrie,
Thank you for telling us all about the museum.We have been wanting to go there for quite some time as well.We had planned on going the last time we visited our parents in Tn. but we ran into bad weather on the way home.So we were kind of anxious to get home but we plan to visit someday in the near future.Lord willing.We have only heard good things about it.Nikki

Arlene @At Home with the Grimms said...

Thanks for sharing the trip to Creation is on our list of places to visit.

Mary Ann said...

I'm so glad you got to visit the Creation Museum - it is fabulous! I have been there once but it was a long time ago; they didn't have the gardens & petting zoo completed. The museum is only about 15 minutes from my brother's house which is very convenient! Also, when you were there you were only about 2 1/2 hours from where I live - much closer than usual! :-)