Here at Tea, we want to give children the world. We set out to help them discover new cultures and traditions, sparking their curiosity and opening their eyes and minds to a world beyond the one they know and live in. This spring, we’ve partnered with the Portland Children’s Museum to bring you a very special exhibit, Voyage to Vietnam: Celebrating the Tết Festival. Now through May 6th, stop by the museum to experience the beauty, sights, sounds and customs of Vietnam.
Curious what you’ll find there? Long-time Tea friend and local Portland mama, the wonderful Chelsee Hood of The House of Hood Blog, recaps her recent visit…
I have lived in Portland my whole life (with the exception of a 3-year stint in Indiana) and my mom used to take me to the Portland Children’s Museum when I was a child. It was in a different location back then and, since we’ve had kids, we’ve actually never taken them! We were so excited to bring them to visit, especially with the Voyage to Vietnam: Celebrating the Têt Festival exhibit going on.
The girls are still really young, so I wasn’t sure how they would be able to take everything in, but my husband, Ryan, took the day off of work to go with us, and we made a whole day of it!
The Portland Children’s Museum: Getting There
We decided to ride the Max to the museum (Portland’s train transit system) and it was perfect because it dropped us right off in front of the museum. The Portland Children’s Museum shares a parking lot with the zoo, and on nice days it can be a little difficult to find parking. I highly recommend taking the Max. Plus, the girls love riding the “choo choo train”.
We started our day off going through several of the permanent exhibits which the girls loved! It was nice letting them just run free, be kids, and not have to tell them “no” or “don’t touch” every five seconds. Our last stop was the Voyage to Vietnam exhibit and the girls had a blast exploring!
Right as we entered the exhibit, we were greeted by a real Vespa! These are used to get around the city, and the girls loved sitting on it (it was probably their favorite part!). As we traveled through the marketplace, we were able to see the different types of flowers, fruits and veggies that are sold in a real Vietnamese market. The girls loved playing with the traditional Vietnamese instruments. They actually played music! McKinlee enjoyed trying on the giant lion dance mask. Ryan might have also tried it on too. Madison wasn’t so sure about it though!
The girls were thrilled that there were customary Ao Dai (long, traditional gowns) for them to try on. They love dressing up and wore them throughout the exhibit. The Voyage to Vietnam exhibit even had a traditional Vietnamese kitchen set up. The girls love playing “kitchen” and had a blast using the pretend stove and all the traditional utensils. From the customary costumes and decor to the traditional cuisine, we had so much fun learning about how the New Year is celebrated in Vietnam! It really was such an interactive exhibit and it was so fun seeing all of the similarities and differences between their lives as children in the U.S. and the lives of children in Vietnam.
It turns out we timed our trip just right and were able to spend some time visiting with the Tea Collection team at their 2-day pop-up shop. They had some really fun crafts set up for the kiddos and we loved that their entire Spring line was on display. It’s even cuter in person than it is online! McKinlee wore her Florida Citrus dress and Madi wore her Florida Citrus romper (they make the best rompers!). We had some beautiful 65 degree weather, so these worked perfectly for the day. Not only are the clothes super comfy, but they wash and wear so beautifully and don’t fade. We’re huge fans!
After Your Visit
Once you’ve had your fun at the Portland Children’s Museum, you could always walk over to the Oregon Zoo (if you have the energy!) since it is right across the parking lot. We left the museum right around 4 and were starving! We hopped on the Max and headed towards home and decided to stop off at Rock Bottom Brewery for an early dinner. You could also transfer to the street car and head over to the Pearl district for lunch/dinner, but we wanted to make it home quick with our tired girls. They both fell asleep on the ride home which means they had a fun day! We can’t wait to make another visit soon!