Wednesday, April 9, 2014

The Zoo

Over the weekend I wanted to take advantage of the decent weather and go to the zoo.  Our one-year Niagara Falls Aquarium membership (brought for half price via Groupon, mostly because of its reciprocal agreement with our zoo) is up next month and I wanted to make sure we got our value out of it.  I'm hoping to get to the aquarium for their "SEAster Egg Hunt" the day before Easter, but I really do want to enjoy our zoo while we can.  Only...once we got there I discovered that they've now set all of their reciprocal agreements at a 50% discount :(  The good news is that I only had to pay for myself.  The bad news is that I really wanted us to go as a family, but Jacob had a major meltdown (gluten exposure, maybe?  Hard to tell.) and it was better to let him chill at home.  But with the good weather I needed to get out of the house, and so did Carter, who is constantly getting into trouble around Jacob's toys.  Had I known I'd have to pay (only $5.50, but still), I might have just opted to take a walk for free, but still...I'm glad we did it.
It's been a while since we've been to the zoo, and I was interested to see how Carter reacted now that he's a little older.  I felt like it was around this age when Jacob started enjoying it a little more, so I was interested to see how it went.  One thing I love about zoos is that they're always different.  If you go to a museum or something like that, most of the time 95% of it is the same as it was the last time.  But with a zoo, you never know what the animals are going to be doing.  This day had a few bright spots, besides the lovely (though still cool) weather.  It's amazing how a very cold winter changes your perspective on things!  Sunny and 50 degrees can feel amazing when it was in the teens for months!
Anyway, one of the first cool things was that the snowy owls were both hanging out.  Owls are cool but they also sort of creep me out.  These two, however, looked so majestic!

While we were watching the owls, I gave Carter his sippy cup of milk, and for some reason I loved the look of it...maybe just how his eyes sparkled from behind it!

We headed over to Africa, and when we got there, there were a lot of people gathered around the normally very boring goats.  Two of them were sort of battling it out.  I tried to get a picture (should have done video!), but this was the best I got...
The one on the left is rearing up.  Notice the one in the back standing on the stump.

The lions weren't really in view and the baboon enclosure was being cleaned (boo), so we moved along to the elephants.  Normally they're pretty boring, but this time we caught one reaching his trunk up to the hanging bucket.  She even hit the bucket with her trunk once, sending it flying!

On our way back up to the rest of the zoo, we noticed that there was one lion hanging out at a close vantage point for us to see.  It was one of the lion cubs born last spring, and they're not so small anymore!  This was the first animal that Carter really seemed to notice.  I pointed out the "big kitty", and he smiled and pointed!
So pretty!  Love the spots on the fur!
Here's Carter checking the "kitty" out...
Hard to see, but the lion is back there somewhere...
We visited the sea lions (who Carter didn't quite seem to get--they're a little tough to comprehend when they swim by so fast), the polar bears (hiding), and the penguins (our zoo's penguins are seriously the most boring ever).  He seemed a little interested in the rhinos, too.

We went into the main building, and there was a meerkat standing right by the glass.  Carter was interested in him, too.  I tried to get a selfie of the three of us, but it didn't really work.

We peeked quickly at the orangutans, and it may be hard to see in this picture, but the baby girl is there somewhere.  She's definitely getting better at moving on her own, but she never stays far from mama.

The last animal that he liked was the golden lion tamarin.  It was right up near the glass, and he loved the tiny little monkey!  It scampered around the enclosure, and Carter really enjoyed watching it!

It was a nice way to enjoy the weather, though I wish Craig and Jacob could have been there, too.  They had fun playing sports outside while we were gone, and when I got home with a sleeping baby, I ran out to get a haircut and decided that Shouty Mommy, as I had become that day, needed a little more of a break so I went clearance shopping at Kohl's.  I'm trying to revamp my wardrobe with clothes that avoid my post-baby bulges and reflect who I am now, not who I was when I bought half the stuff in my closet 5-10 years ago.  I got a few tops and enjoyed my solo time.

It's been another busy week and we're all looking forward to next week when Jacob is off school (we compromised and let him have one day at daycare and three at the afterschool program) and we'll start gearing up for Easter.  That will be a busy weekend, for sure.  Still, hopefully we can have lots of fun!

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