Saturday, January 23, 2016

Peterson Family Reunion 2015: Zoo Day!

I was really excited for what we had planned for day 2 of the reunion: THE ZOO! The last time my family went to the zoo Bud was in a stroller, so none of the kids really remember it. Pen stayed back to work on college applications (and she's against zoos), but the rest of us were super excited.

I loved watching the kids as they saw animals in person that they'd only read about. And I loved seeing the animals, too. So cool.

Seeing the snakes up close was fascinating and I could have looked at them for ages-- a little easier and less stressful to do with glass separating us. :)

I admit to having mixed feelings about zoos, too, especially when the animals are housed in less than ideal conditions. But then I think of the role zoos play in animal conservation, and I feel better. And then I see this and I gasp in awe and delight:

Seriously! Look at all of that space! I didn't feel bad about this at all. It was beautiful. 

I could have stood there for hours. The funniest part was when this one giraffe just stood there looking at Big for a really long time and Big said, "That giraffe just keeps staring at me. It must be because I'm so good-looking." I'm sure that's it. Ha!

There were just so many neat things to see. We spent quite a while watching the dik-dik chew its cud. When it swallowed you could see this big lump travel down its skinny neck, and then, a moment later, the lump would travel back UP! Then it would chew for a minute and the process would repeat. Fascinating!

The horn on the rhinoceros was ginormous! 

Remember all of that reading Big and I used to do on alligators and crocodiles? Well, needless to say, he was pretty darn excited to see these.

Edith and Big fell more than just a little bit in love with the magnificent lions that were there. I loved watching the two of them as they watched the lions. We even got to hear a little snarly roar out of the male lion when the female nipped at him in annoyance after he woke her up. Way cool.

We finally convinced a tired Edith to take a turn in the stroller. She was embarrassed, thinking she was way too old, but I think we were all glad she did. I mean, we were walking the zoo all day the day after a 4 mile hike, tag, and bowling. I think we ALL wanted to ride in the stroller. 

As we were leaving, my family stopped in the zoo gift shop so the kids could get a souvenir of the trip with some money they received from Grandma and Grandpa Gorilla for Christmas. I had to forbid Big from purchasing a souvenir on the way to Arizona at the gas station convenience stores. They're full of so many treasures, I know, but I told him that the zoo was the only place he was allowed to spend his money. I think he's so glad he waited. I know I am. I got a really cool giraffe mug to remember my favorite exhibit by. What a fabulous time we all had at the zoo! We're already talking about when we can go back.

I think it ended up being a really good reunion activity, too. We got to interact a little, spread out a little...Ginger told me how much she loves the zoo (over and over again) and how it's the best reunion we've ever had...Big got a chance to tell some other people in the family all the stuff he knows about animals... perfect. 

We were all pretty exhausted so we just chilled out that evening. 

A great end to a really great day. What could possibly be next?

1 comment:

jww said...

Oh, that's super cool! I love your photos, too. Ethan is a huge giraffe fan, too.