Please note that it is only Adelaide and Caedmon watching the window show; Atticus was eschewing temptation and studiously plowing his way through schoolwork.
Upon leaving Iowa, Atticus and Adelaide's teachers each sent us on our way with a merry, "Have fun!" and a thick packet of work for missing three days' worth of school for our trip. I was so thankful they did this; it meant I didn't have to worry about the kids being behind and swamped with work when they returned on Monday. I found this difficult to communicate in my Thank You notes, however- "Thank you SO MUCH for all the homework you sent with my child," can't help but come off as sarcastic. And I was so sincere!
Oh, well. Parent Teacher Conferences are approaching, their teachers will have a chance to converse with me, and they'll figure out just what they're dealing with here.
When we weren't nervously watching people replace a second floor window, we were at Tanganyika, which is a word I did not make up.
Tanganyika is a zoo in Wichita that boasts two big pluses: It's very small, and very hands-on. I'm not normally real big on zoos; I spend so much time feeling sorry for the animals in their cages I can't really enjoy myself. I had that feeling once at Tanganyika, watching the tiger slowly devolve into mental illness as he paced the same ten foot section in his much-bigger-than-ten-feet enclosure. The rest was nice, though, as it consisted of much smaller, more social animals that seemed more compatible to life in a zoo. Note: All these zoo opinions of mine are just that: Opinions. Please don't think I've done anything like extensive research. ¿Entiende?
Moving on from zoo guilt:
The lorikeets were a big favorite with most of us- see a thrilled Atticus feeding them, above- and even fun for those of us whose heads were constantly being violated while in the pen.
|Caedmon + Lorikeets = True Love 4-Ever. Or not.|
One of the things I liked best was that most of the animal enclosures had their own keeper supervising any feeding or touching of their animals, and gave pretty specific instructions on how to interact with and respect their assigned animals. We were only allowed into the kangaroo area once we had repeated back to the gal that we would only approach the kangaroos if they were lying down, and only from behind, never from in front, and to hold still and not touch them if they approached us.
Which they did.
|If I remember correctly, this kangaroo's name is Gloria. She looks like she will have no part of our son's shenanigans.|
We also visited the rabbits because apparently, when forced to choose between their mother and soft, soft varmints, they will always choose the varmints. I felt like Mrs. Bennet; nobody cared about my poor nerves.
|Atticus has officially entered the Giant Feet Stage. He looks like a puppy now, all skinny limbs and oversized paws.|
The tortoises were a little more my speed (har, har).
Each boy fed a tortoise a lettuce leaf with a clothes pin. Adelaide opted to feed the lemurs instead, which you will have to picture using your rich imaginations as photography was forbidden on Lemur Island. I forget why.
It was all so enjoyable, but I realized, on the hour+ drive back to my Mom's, that our children aren't really old enough to fall asleep in the car after a busy activity. This means I need them to hurry up and learn to drive so I can sleep in the car; I have got that particular talent down.