Exploring STL (County) – Sophia M Sachs Butterfly House
I figured we’d begin our life back in St. Louis in true Preparing for Peanut style…by exploring!!
That giant insect behind Little Man was our first stop on our way to the Butterfly House yesterday. I’ve always heard about this place but honestly, I rarely drove out to the “county” and never had a chance to visit. It was Just. Too. Far.
BUT, our waiting-to-close-on-our-house hotel (or as Ethan calls it “Our New House!”) happens to be in Chesterfield (big time St. Louis county) and about two minutes away from this little gem so we had to go. Plus, it’s a great place to go when the temperature is 27. 27. Freaking freezing.
It was like a vacation in the tropics…
Upon entering the amazingly-warm-and-cozy conservatory (where the butterflies fly) we were told March is “Morpho Mania” which means there were hundreds of these big blue beauties practically dive-bombing us from every direction.
But in a good way. It was magical.
I’ve been to butterfly houses before, one pre-Ethan in Key West and one with Ethan in the Smithsonian National History Museum, and I have to say this place is the BEST. Even better, Ethan is the perfect age to really enjoy the trip—he was so careful walking around, never tried to touch any butterflies, really taking his time to look and watch.
I swear there is a butterfly in his sights…it was a small one.
One of my favorite moments was when Ethan slowly approached a nearby butterfly when it suddenly opened it’s wings and scared the pants off of Ethan. He jumped about a foot.
The Peanut, on the other hand, got a pretty huge kick out of the butterfly that landed on my head and wouldn’t leave…it took a vigorous shake of my hair (as recommended by a docent) to get the little guy off.
I’m wearing no makeup and four layers of spring clothes. Did I mention it’s FREEZING here?
My least favorite part was the other insect exhibits…totally gross. Centipedes (like the ones we used to have in Virginia!) , spiders, HUGE roaches, water bugs, walking sticks, and beetles. Yeck. For $1, you could even FEED some of the roaches. But since we “fed” roaches in our ridiculously expensive Old Town rental house in the not-too-distant past, we skipped this little attraction.
Ethan thought they were totally cool.
There was even a little play area just outside the conservatory exit where Ethan did his grocery store thing for a bit before we headed out.
One more huge insect statue…
But our morning at Faust Park was not done. Oh no.
If it had been warm enough, we would have spent QUITE a bit of time here:
I swear St. Louis has the best play grounds. This is one of at least five I’ve checked out in the past couple years on our visits to the area. It’s just outside the Butterfly House, making it a perfect stop off before or after seeing the fluttery dudes.
And there’s also this:
A giant, indoor carousel! A ride on the historic 1929 Faust Park Carousel is $2 per person…if you can somehow navigate the gift-shop-surrounded ticket line without making another purchase. This place, with it’s stuffed animals and silly logo-clad chachkies, is setting parents up to fail. We arrived just after a school group left so we had the place pretty much to ourselves.
He doesn’t look trilled, but I assure you he was. Oh and I got in trouble for taking this picture. The lady running the whole show got on her mic and “reminded” parents to hold onto their children at all times. Oops.
So while none of these things—Butterfly House, carousel, and play ground—could really keep you busy for a whole morning, all three together is a trifecta of toddler happiness. After lunch, Ethan hit the hay for three straight hours…he was pooped.
The Butterfly House was getting really busy when we left (around 10:30) so I’d say 9:30am on week days is your best bet for crowd-free viewing. Admission is $6 for adults, $4 for kids 3-12, and FREE for kids under 3.
Basically, we we’re off to a good start.
After our relaxing week on The Farm, landing in St. Louis was a huge slap of reality—we’ve moved. It’s done. Crazy! And emotional. But this limbo week of hotel living will be over before we know it, especially since our close date was moved UP to Wednesday. Sweet!
Check out the new “Exploring St. Louis tab! To answer many of your questions, “Exploring DC” will not go away, we’ll just be starting a new list of adventures here in St. Louis.