Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Zoo

Tuesday was a beautiful day in NC - only about 84 degrees and very low humidity (very unusual!).  So, on a bit of a whim, I decided to take my girls to the NC Zoo for the day.  My mom (Memaw) came down and joined us and we had a wonderful day.  Some highlights of the trip -

  • We saw a short 4D Dora & Diego movie.  All of us got a kick out of the 4D effects.  Even Rachel & Megan giggled through the whole thing (although they are no longer interested in Dora at all.)
  • We got very close to an actual giraffe - he even ate leaves out of Rachel & Megan's hands!
  • We saw a baby chimp!!  She was born in August 2010 and was absolutely adorable!! :)
  • We rode the carousel (which Emily continuously called the "roller coaster!")
  • We got soaked by a man-made geyser on the "prairie."
  • We finally found the Dippin' Dots!!!
It is so much fun to see the kids in a different setting from time to time.  It exaggerates the qualities that I know are there, but lose sight of occasionally.  For example:
  • I was reminded how much Rachel really loves animals.  Of course, she is already a vegetarian, but sometimes I forget about the maturity and commitment that takes and just focus on how difficult it makes things.  At the zoo, though, she led the way.  She studied the map and made sure we didn't miss a single animal.  She spouted off facts about the animals.  Most importantly, she giggled and smiled all day.
  • I was also reminded just how energetic Megan can be.  By the end of the day, we were all pretty tired (after all, we had basically been walking around the zoo for over 6 hours).  When we got in the car, though, she was still her silly, giggling self.  In fact, she didn't slow down until her head hit the pillow that night!
  • If you have ever studied or heard of The Five Love Languages you will understand this one - Emily's love language is definitely "gifts."  I have known this for a while, but it was very evident at the zoo.  She was minimally interested in the animals, but thanked me profusely for taking her to see Dora.  Then, she spent the day asking when we could ride the "roller coaster" (the carousel) and when we would "go to the store."  (Memaw had promised them a trip to the gift shop for souvenirs.)  She was the first one to pick out her souvenir - a small, stuffed polar bear - and has carried it around with her ever since! 
In short, it was a fantastic day.  I love spending that kind of time with my girls - truly watching them and taking them in.  They are amazing!!

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