Posts Tagged ‘birds’

Birds and Butterflies

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

There was a ton of stuff going on in our area over the weekend: members weekend at the Aquarium, the International Food Festival in Mystic, the annual Butterfly Pavilion in Norwich AND it was Connecticut Open House weekend.

Unfortunately, it was also one of those weekends where none of us really felt like getting off the couch. I swear our day in Brooklyn last Sunday threw the kids off all week, and there were a ton of couch naps that led to super early wake-ups that meant even more couch naps and we were all a little sleep-deprived and short-tempered. E had duty Friday which meant he didn’t get home until lunch on Saturday, so that day was mostly a wash. I tried to fit ALL THE THINGS in on Sunday and ended up with two very unhappy kids in a butterfly pavilion, begging to go home. So we did. I like family activities, I don’t like torturing my children. Even to get more photos. Clearly I got enough photos.

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They refused to consider any of the food besides The Bleu Squid for grilled cheese and cupcakes.

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Black Forest cupcake

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Lobster roll. Lobster & a little mayo with lemon on top. As it should be.

Caroline was really, really excited to get her face painted and tried hard to sit still. Of course, she’s 2. I’m 31 and I can hardly sit still to have my make-up done at the Clinique counter at the mall (I don’t like people touching my eyes) (NO ONE likes people touching their eyes!). The patient make-up artist managed to get it done though – including a layer of glitter over the whole thing – and Caroline became Kitty Caroline. She ran all over the Oldey Mistickey Villagey meowing and stopping people in their tracks to go “Awwwwwwwww! Look at her face! She’s a kitty! Bob, Bob come look at this kitty! Isn’t she adorable?!” At this point I feel like taking my child out in public is like hanging out with one of the minor Kardashians. Krispy? Krumbly? Whatever they’re called. I should start spelling it Karoline.

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It’s like E is wearing THREE hats!

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Caroline met Ariel & got her autograph. She was pretty impressed. And a little skeptical.

The Butterfly Pavilion was cool, but kind of crowded. They encouraged you to let the butterflies crawl/land on you and even had sugar water to dab on your fingers. Caroline liked it. Evan was D O N E, so we didn’t stay long.

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Our Visit to the Reston Zoo

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

While we were visiting my parents in Northern Virginia, we had an opportunity to visit the Reston Zoo. I haven’t spent a lot of time in Fairfax County since I graduated high school a dozen years ago so I had no idea it was even there until I read about the zoo on my friend Emily’s blog back in May. Then I had the good fortune a winning an admission in her giveaway so we had no excuse not to go!

It was seriously cool. Two thumbs up. Here’s a zillion photos.

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The petting zoo was full of gentle sheep and goats. They were awesome at getting the food out of the kids’ hands without biting at all.

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There were a couple of school trips and a lots of moms with kids around Evan and Caroline’s age but the zoo never felt crowded (even though it was small enough to do without a stroller)

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Medium sized ginger with a tiny baby goat

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Pushy but gentle

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You can buy bottles for $1.50 to feed the babies

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Curly sheep, I want to knit you

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No I absolutely did NOT consider stuffing a tiny pig in my purse

 And that was just the official petting zoo barn. There were plenty of other animals to see outside.

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Some sort of grouse or partridge with omg fluffy chicks

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Adorable little foxy thing that Caroline was dying to cuddle

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Caroline REALLY like the monkeys. I suspect she thought they were little hairy babies.

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Prairie Dog

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Evan and MorMor. Don’t worry, that’s not a real lion.

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Llama llama was very friendly to Mama

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Man, I have seen WAY too many alligators in the past week

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Tiny adorable deer who was in with the geese and ducks

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Budgie enclosure – just like at the Mystic Aquarium except that the sticks only cost $1 and the birds were SUPER friendly.

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Even Caroline could feed the birds. Although she also kept trying to pet them.

And then there was the wagon ride to see the bigger animals, including a camel, antelope, deer, zebras, buffalo, and wildebeest (I cannot hear the word wildebeest without thinking of The Lion King) . Evan was probably more excited about the tractor than about any of the animals, but it was REALLY neat.

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We weren’t supposed to feed the zebras, but they didn’t come close anyways. I suspect they are not super friendly.

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That’s my 3 year old feeling a BUFFALO. A buffalo! I pet him and his wool was just as soft as I imagined based on how expensive buffalo yarn is.

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Caroline really liked the animals, as long as someone was holding her.

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That’s a watusi. CRAZY huge horns.

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I don’t even remember what this thing is called.

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Evan feeding a giant beast. He was so brave!

I think this is going to be a regular stop when we visit my parent’s house in Virginia. The kids really enjoyed it and I can only imagine they’d like it MORE as they get older and can really appreciate what a rare experience it is.

(Someone commented on my previous post where I mentioned our plans to visit Reston Zoo to say they had been charged with animal cruelty. Obviously I don’t want to visit somewhere that is mistreating their animals so I looked up the charges online. It appears to be an isolated incident involving one person and one sick animal reported to the police by one source rather than an ongoing investigation into the zoo’s practices. While I was there I saw nothing but well cared for animals and helpful, polite staff. I’m not dismissing anyone’s concerns, I’m just letting you know I made an informed decision to visit despite that news story.)