We had a wonderful family trip to London today. This is not something that we have been able to do before. Both the boys have found the travelling and crowds a bit too much to cope with in the past and have been very clear that going to London IS NOT HAPPENING!! We have built up to this slowly over a couple of years. Spent a few hours each weekend in a busy shopping centre. We started off in a quietish town and then moved on to shopping in a more busy one. Stopped doing our weekly food shop on line and started to go to the supermarket. Any one with a child will know that's never fun, any one with Autistic children will know its HELL! But with gradual build up and exposure we have helped the boys to be less upset and stressed by the crowds, noise and people. Given them the tools to deal with shopping and town centres and now we have worked up to cities. Our visit to Oxford as a family was such a success that we thought we would plant the seed in the boys minds about London. This summer we gave it a go! It was Amazing and the boys want to go back again!
We thought it best to avoid anything that might push their tolerance too far. The visit had to be positive and everyone needed to stay happy and calm. So we avoided the subways and buses and stuck to the black cabs. We caught the coach in to London centre and then hailed cabs to get from one place to the next This did make the travelling pricey but it was worth every penny! By the time we were ready to come home Brendan was hailing the cabs for us!
We started off at the Natural history Museum. That place is so big that we could have spent the whole day there. We chose a few things that we really wanted to see and stopped at the restaurant for a lovely lunch.
We learnt a lot about how the Earth changes due to water and wind etc... How rocks are formed and looked at the Oceans and waves. Brendan is really in to Geology so this was a great part for him to explore. There is so much hands on learning at this place. They were never bored or fed up.
We just had to see the Famous Dinosaur!!!!
We learnt about how our bodies worked. Brendan was looking at joints with this activity and how the bones in his arm moved when he pulled on the lever.
After the Natural History Museum we popped in to a Butterfly house that they had set up in the grounds. We learnt about some of the species, saw some hatching and spotted caterpillars!
After a while we headed off to Trafalgar Square. Kenzie has been doing a project \at school on Van Gough and wanted to see some of his paintings in real life. We popped in to the National Gallery and a lovely lady directed us to the right room. Sadly the Sunflowers were in Amsterdam at an exhibition but he liked the paintings that he did get to see.
When we came out again we watched some street performers and looked at street art, then had a play by the water fountains in Trafalgar Square.
We took a lovely walk to Forbidden Planet to enjoy some "Geek" time! So much cool stuff, we could have stayed in there for hours!
We had a wonder around China town as well. Not for long and sadly we didn't have time to stop for a meal, but it was lovely to walk through.
Of course we could not do London without stopping at Hamleys!!
So much to play with!
Kenzie made a dog teddy in the Build a bear that they have in there.
When we came out of Hamleys there were some Rickshaws outside. One very happy and lovely chap, called Johnson, took us ALL (!!) to Leicester Square for some dinner. I could not believe he could peddle the bike with us all on it!
We stopped in to see M&M world quickly before we set back off to Hyde Park to get the coach home.
We drove past Buckingham Palace a couple of times to!
We were all very tired by now. it was about 8:30pm.
Then we got to relax on the coach home!
Some of us had a nap!