Thursday, May 29, 2014

Our first playground and woodland adventure … Me and Kaity!

Today was another first in my grand mothering history! Kaity and I had a solo playground and woodland adventure this afternoon. Look at her pleased little face! We had a very nice time together.
Kaity will turn two one month from today. I can hardly believe how fast these months have gone by. I'm so glad I got to spend some special time with her today! She enjoyed the playground very much. However, whenever a person wandered near who was walking their dog, Kaity followed saying, "Woof-fuf." I had a difficult time keeping her away from the dogs today! 

We enjoyed a perfectly sunny and quite warm hour at the playground. 
 On one of Kaity's excursions (dog-following), she discovered a pathway into the woods that I didn't even know existed! I was so excited! So Kaity and I had our first woodland adventure today ...
 Kaity was like a wood-nymph, a delicate little pixie-girl tip-toeing through the woods … she loved it!
And I loved watching her have such a lovely time among the trees and flowers ...

I'm sure we'll do a lot more of this throughout the coming months. I love you Kaity-dear!

Dear, sweet Little Fellow ...

I went over to Dylan and Kelly's yesterday to celebrate Dylan's birthday. Kelly fixed us a nice yummy lunch! I ate mine with Brendan sweetheart sitting on my lap, eating both from my plate AND his! You would think that with it being DYLAN'S birthday, I would have snapped a few nice pictures of him … but instead … I was distracted by this little cutie and every single picture I took was of Brendan!

Brendan LOVES to play outside. He and I decided to take in the fresh air of this beautiful day and go for a walk. However, practically as soon as we got outside Brendan spied my car and wanted to GO! I told him we weren't going anywhere in my car and this is what resulted … 
Oh my! Isn't he darling? He wasn't exactly pleased that we were not going away in my car! But then I grabbed a dandelion (a puff ball) and blew it away with one breath, which Brendan thought was pretty cool. He decided to give it a try ... 
 Brendan tried very hard to blow the fluff from this flower, but his little wispy blow didn't really do the trick. He was not one to give up easily, however. 

We walked a little way down to the creek and spent a relaxing half hour pitching stones to see what kind of splash we could make.
Little Fellow is always enthused about finding his own stones to toss ... 
This is my favorite picture I took of Brendan today.

My "baby" turned 30 yesterday ...

Dylan's 30th birthday was yesterday. It hardly seems possible when just yesterday (!) he was a little kiddo, as sweet as he could be.

I made Dylan this card for his birthday. From the day he was born, he was a gentle soul through and through. Quiet, contented, kind … what a blessing he has always been to me.

One of my favorite pictures of Dylan!
Happy Birthday, Dylan James! May the Lord continue to bless you as you walk with Him!

Sunday, May 25, 2014

We joined the zoo and had our first zoo adventure!

For Mother's Day, Dylan and Kelly gave me a $ gift towards purchasing a Grandparent Zoo Membership. Thank you so much you guys! I've been anticipating joining now for several weeks, but I had to pick the right time! This weekend was forecasted to have beautiful and perfect weather … so … YAY … I am an official member of the John Ball Zoo Society! This is a one-year membership and comes with many benefits! The best one being that I can take up to FIVE grandchildren, together or separate, and not have to pay admission.

I talked to the kiddos about it last week, and we decided to make some "Zoo Rules", which basically consisted of the things we COULD do at the zoo, and the stuff we could NOT do. We typed them up, and everyone added their ideas and gave input, and then we printed them out and shook hands in agreement to abide by these rules! We also ate a rather large lunch before leaving for the zoo, then we cleaned up the Beach House, packed my backpack full of snacks/goodies and water, and had an ice-cream cone right here … and then loaded up the car and took off … FOR THE ZOO!
We had a great first zoo adventure! Each kiddo received a zoo map and enjoyed following it very much.  

We saw the pelicans and ducks first ... 
And then Mr. Baldy Eagle … but then we went up the hill a little bit and saw the monkeys, who really weren't up to much monkey-business at the time ~ so we wandered on over to The Stingray Lagoon! This was the area of most anticipation by the boys ...
Christopher, especially, COULD NOT WAIT to touch a stingray … as well as the sharks! 
 It was very fun to watch these two kiddos "hunting" out when the rays would "fly" past them so that they could touch their smooth skin.
 They were a little hesitant about Mr. Shark at first, but both of them managed to touch him on his back several times.
Emma enjoyed looking at them for awhile, but she had no intention of putting her hands into that pool! Plus, the zookeeper was on a rather loud microphone giving all kinds of interesting educational information about stingrays and sharks … but the volume was a little overwhelming for Ems. She stepped aside for awhile and did a little reading ...
Matthew really really wanted NOT to be afraid to touch these critters, but he had to be sure first! So he watched Christopher successfully reach out and feel their skin (without dying!) … and so he finally ventured in and was SO PROUD of himself when he finally had success.

It was so great to watch these kids have so much fun. Discovery is a wonderful thing. Kids really love to learn and "hands on" is one of the best ways! 
There are beautiful flowers at the zoo …
couldn't resist snapping a shot!
 We walked up to Red's Hobby Farm, but there wasn't much action going on there. The big barn was closed up but we did visit with a few goats outside.

 We went inside with the "Budgies" for a little while but the kiddos were a bit concerned about the birds dropping unpleasantries on their heads … it was almost impossible to be inside the cage with them without also being underneath them … aren't they so pretty, though?

We climbed the pathway up to the Zip Line, but since none of us were going to DO the zip line, we took the path up to the very top of the zoo property, found a nice shady area with a picnic table and had our snacks. 

There's a lot of great stuff to buy at the zoo, and the prices are actually reasonable; but one of our "rules" was that grandma (me) wasn't going to purchase anything for anyone. However, the kids got some good ideas about how to spend their allowances in future weeks. 

We played at the Tree Top Outpost for awhile ... 
I'm not sure where these little pigmy goats were! They were not at the barn, but at a different enclosure. Aren't they so cute? 

I didn't really take a whole lot of pictures of the animals … I mean, I don't know them personally like I know my grandchildren and I so enjoy taking pictures of their happy faces! 

One of the animal masks in the gift shop …
What a GREAT gift shop it is too!
 We stayed at the zoo until it closed! We walked outside the zoo gate and visited with "Nessie" for a little while before we played on the playground.

All and all, it was an afternoon to remember … I always will! We plan to make the zoo a regular part of our summer adventures ~ I'm pretty ecstatic about it!