Deprecated: Assigning the return value of new by reference is deprecated in cache.php on line 99
NWI Parent
NWI Parent

Spend a day at the Nature Museum

January 29th, 2011 - By Stephanie Precourt

Exploring trees

We explored trees inside out at the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum - you can check the Exploring Trees exhibit now until February 6. We might be heading back just one last time before it ends- that’s how much Ivy & Gray loved it. (I’m thinking it might be a great “get out of the house during the Super Bowl” activity…)


The huge tree playground in the center of the exhibit was a huge hit,with plenty to climb and crawl through. And the awesome “green screen” dress up stage where the kids could see themselves flying through the trees on a TV screen was absolutely adorable.

dressed up birds

flying gray

Even if you can’t make it in the next week, there’s so many other fun things for the kids to do year round at the museum, especially spending time in the amazing butterfly haven.

butterfly haven

Bonus: the small gift shop at the entrance/exit of the museum is full of affordable items, including snacks and beverages for the kids priced so that you don’t break the bank especially compared to other Chicago destinations. Like!

The museum is open every day, with a free day on Thursdays, and children under 3 are always free. Street parking is readily available (especially this time of year, so go!)

Stephanie is Mom to three boys & a girl in Valparaiso, IN and blogs daily at Adventures In Babywearing . Follow her on Twitter- she’s babysteph .

The Monarchs are coming!

May 21st, 2010 - By Stephanie Precourt

Sanctuary, monarchs, Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

Every year the beautiful Monarch butterfly makes a 2,500 mile journey from Canada to its sanctuary in Michoacan, Mexico, with a pit stop on the way in Chicago.

Starting tomorrow through September 19, Sanctuary: Flight of the Majestic Monarch will be on display at the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. The exhibit allows for hands-on learning with paintings, photography, 3-D video, and sound installations.

Sanctuary, monarchs

Award-winning Chicago artist Hector Duarte, a native of Michoacan is creating a living mural that he will continue to work on throughout the months of the exhibit. Guests can watch and even take part in this one-of-a-kind creation. He’s set to be at the museum every Friday, but be sure to check the museum website for updates when Hector will be painting.

There are ways we can help the monarchs have a comfortable stay during their migration: museum educator Amaris Alanis-Ribeiro was kind enough to answer some of my questions and she explained that “while many people like to plant exotic flowers in their garden, planting native plants to your area is the best way to attract the monarchs as they migrate.” Also, plant milkweed plants as that is where they lay their eggs (and milkweed attracts many other kinds of butterflies, too.)

We had a free sneak preview yesterday- it was oh so professional of me to run up there with Ivy and Gray who were, um, not all that cooperative, but thankfully everyone there was understanding. Kids, you know? Sigh.

I might just run away to live in the Butterfly Haven (a permanent exhibit at the museum) next chance I get. Seriously, a room full of a thousand gorgeous butterflies flying about you. Heaven.

butterfly, water bokeh

I tried to take more photos in there but chasing Ivy and keeping her out of the water and out of the bushes and from eating butterflies took top priority. Another sigh.

Find the Nature Museum right next to Lincoln Park Zoo. Admission includes all special exhibits and is $9 for adults & $6 for children 3-12, and Thursdays are “free” days with donations suggested.

And! I completely forgot wanted to announce the winner of the Chartreuse giveaway… congrats Beth (no blog, but I have her email!)

About the author: Stephanie is Mom to three boys & a baby girl in Valparaiso, IN and blogs daily at Adventures In Babywearing . Follow her on Twitter- she’s babysteph .


Coming to your email inbox every Wednesday morning, "New Arrivals"  is your connection to the very latest parenting news and blogs, plus local events, destinations and resources.

Meet our Bloggers

Close To Home

Close To Home

Stephanie is a stay-at-home mom to three boys and a baby girl, but don't let that fool you. She'll keep you in style and in-the-know with this thing called parenthood. Even though none of us know what we're doing.

Food with a Dash of Fun

We've all gotta eat-might as well have some fun in the kitchen! Check here for recipes, cooking with kids, food finds, and more.

Father Knows Nothing

Rick Kaempfer's business card says author/writer/blogger, but his real job is "stay-at-home-dad."

Laptops to Countertops

Photographer and writer mom of two, Beth always brings a new twist to the suburban mundane.

Party of Two

Join newly married Julia, former single mom, as she and her daughter transition into the nuclear-family life.

Oh, the Places We Will Go

Experiencing the South Shore one little moment at a time