Sunday, December 14, 2008

How We Do the Zoo

Since I watch another little girl I'm learning to really value the time that I have alone with my kids. In November Hayley had 2 days off school in a row and I didn't have to watch Jasmine on those days so we took off to play!

Day #1:
Chuck E. Cheese

What American kid doesn't have a few of these pictures from good ol' Chuck E. Cheese? It's getting pretty tricky to fit us all in nowadays. Sqeeze and say "cheese!"

Day #2:
Our DC National Zoo

Such a perfect day to visit the zoo...a little bit rainy (so not many people come) but not too cold! Tammy was even free that day so we got to take Aunt Tammy along for the fun.

I used to think that when we visited the zoo we had to see all the animals and power through the whole thing! I've finally learned the best way for my kids to see the zoo.

1. We try to make it there early enough for the elephant bath. It's fun to see every time!

2. We look at the map together and decide on a small area we want to focus on that day. (Pack lunch and lots of snacks and water.)

3. I take a clipboard & pencil for each kid and prepare activities for them to do as we move along (see ideas below)

4. We take our time and go at their pace...on this day we spent an hour sitting on a bench in the bird house while Hayley sketched animals and Maya found letters on signs. They were happy and learning so why hurry them!

Standing like the pink flamingoes!

Hayley's sketch of a gecko.

Hayley and Mommy sketched a Tucan together.
Hayley also likes the activity pages that the zoo provides on their website. Click here to print your own. This day we did "Zoo-per Bingo". Another big hit that we've done is to take a print out of a world map then mark on it where different animals come from.

Maya's current interest (obsession) is letters so her activity page was all the letters of the alphabet. As we walked along she looked for letters on the signs and crossed them off. It was a big hit!

The B.O.B. Stroller

My dear neighbor and friend, Erin, has this BOB stroller that she raves about all the time. She knew we were heading to the zoo so offered to let me try it out fot the day. Oh my! This is a "change-your-life" stroller!!! I never knew about this whole line of upper-end strollers. Guess I've always just kept to WalMart and Target brands (& ones that are easy to find used). This thing has a big price tag (I'll save you looking it up....$500+). Never thought I'd say it but it's worth every penny and is the new product that I drool over every time I see someone pushing one!

I can fit all 3 kids in the double version and it still feels like I'm only pushing 5lbs! Riding on air! Turns on a dime and can maneuver easily with one hand. I'm in love! I've decided that maybe one day I can buy one if I can come up with enough money by selling stuff around our house that I don't need/want anymore. It's amazing how much junk I'm finding and Craigslist is my friend. But it'll still take a while! In the's the pics of us gliding along on our ride for the day.


Andy and Krista said...

I love the zoo sketches! Oh and good luck with the camera buisness, such a pain!! I am so glad you got that one cute shot of all 3 of them though, it's adorable!

Jeni said...

Do you have an REI out there? The few friends I have that have a BOB have gone to their half off sale (or anniversary sale or something along those lines) and purchased the BOB then - half off that stroller definitely worth it!

Kayelynn said...

I love your new background and pictures! The "all about us" updates were fun to read. Your girls sound like so much fun! I like your zoo groove. No wonder they love going! That stroller sounds amazing!

Joyce said...

Thanks for being such a fun mom to some of the cutest granddaughters.

Tammy Messick said...

I am so glad you included Hayley's sketches. She did such a great job capturing the gecko!