Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Put Me in the Zoo

(all the photos in this post were taken with my phone -- I had packed up the good camera, but forgot it on the table in our rush out of the house)

I will go into the zoo. I want to see it. Yes, I do.
Will you keep me in the zoo? I want to stay in here with you.

(Courtesy of Dr. Suess)

Two weeks ago, we bought a year-long family pass to the Zoo.  We got the pass that included all four of us plus one additional guest. When looking at the cost of a membership, it happened to be the same as two trips with the four of us with our +1.  We have high hopes of going to the zoo often this year (and if I choose to stay-home, I'll be able to take the rugrats during the week).

So we decided this past weekend that we all needed to get out of the house.  Our Zoo is open year round, which is crazy due to our crazy cold and snowy winters!  In fact, the only days that the Zoo is closed is on New Years Day and Christmas.  The other 364 days?  Open for business!

Our Zoo also has an indoor structure that is called "The Rainforest".  So we chose to go to the Rainforest and spend a Saturday.  Both E & I were really excited to take Finn.  It would be our first big "first" for Finn that we have done in a while.

I had prepped Finn the night before.  I asked her if she knew what the Zoo was.  And I asked her what animals she wanted to see in the Zoo.  Apparently monkeys and turtles were her main focus.  She was so excited to go to the Zoo.  Her exact words?  "It will be fun!" (which is said in the cutest way)

Now the Rainforest is pretty limited in the variety of animals that it houses.  It has a 10-foot waterfall immediately upon walking in the door.  Then there are monkeys on either side.  After the monkeys, you walk through a rainforest path looking at all the different plant life that is included in the rainforest.  This was obviously of no interest to Finn.

On the upper level, there are the big monkeys, an ocelot (who was M.I.A.), a family of otters and an orangutan.  She was quite interested at first.  But didn't want Daddy to move anywhere but by her side.  She wouldn't get rid of her security blanket (her bink and her lamb).  We tried to take them away several times during the Rainforest, but I think that she was very unsure of where she was and all the strange things that were in front of her.

One of the old monkeys came up right next to the window (as you can see in the photo above).  We asked Finn if she wanted to reach out and touch the glass to see if the monkey would "touch" her hand.  Hell no!   

On the lower level of the Rainforest, there were lots of snakes, spiders, fish, & turtles.  There is a huge display of fruit bats (which are my personal favorite as well as E's).  We went through the Rainforest and Finn was still being really good (despite it being an hour past her nap time).  So we thought we would hit some of the outside animals which were close to the entrance.

The African elephants (my absolute favorites!!!) were right next to the entrance.  The elephants are kept in their building when the temperature drops before 40 degrees.  It was below 40 that day, so they were inside.  We got to see all five females as well as the one male.  Finn was pretty scared at the beginning but by the end (and with lots of positive talking from both E & I about how excited we were to be seeing the elephants), she had warmed up enough to want out of the stroller and was standing along the fence.

We ended our visit to the zoo with the lions.  By that point, I think that we were almost 90 minutes beyond her normal nap time and she wasn't as impressed with the lions as I would have thought. The girl can give an enormous "ROAR" when you ask her what the lion says, so I thought she would be so amazed by them.  I think that she was really tired.

In fact, upon arriving at the car, she fell asleep before we got four blocks away from the zoo.  And she was OUT.  E & I didn't really want to go home at that point and both of us were starving (and thirsty).  So we picked a local brewery to grab a pint as well as lunch/dinner for the three of us.  Brother was great the entire time in his stroller.  He only cried when we were initially outside waiting to get our membership validated. And then he fussed once in the Rainforest.  The rest of the 2-3 hours he just slept away in his carseat.  It was a great day out!

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