We spent the most memorable weekend with extended family celebrating my Grandma's 80th birthday!!! But first, I want to reminisce about our pit-stop a the Hogle Zoo on our way south.
Jed had both Thursday and Friday off from school. So we packed up the car and headed out Thursday morning, arriving at the zoo in the early afternoon. The boys were sooo excited to see all the animals! Jed was especially excited to see a rhino. He was pretty fixated on that and wanted to find them right away. Ha! (I think the movie Hatari may have had some influence on that.) We've found that Fall really is the best time to visit the zoo. It wasn't crowded and the weather was cool and overcast, which meant all the animals were out and active! We spent over three hours exploring and re-exploring the different attractions. I was quite impressed, actually. The Hogle Zoo is small but really nice and harbors all of the major large animals. I am so glad we have zoos to help foster a love and fascination for animals.
We wrapped up the afternoon at the gift shop by purchasing the boys stuffed animals to remember their trip by. Jed chose a rhino. Levi chose a snow leopard. They're inseparable new best friends and kind of go everywhere with us now.
^^Learning to read the zoo map. "Where are the rhinos, Dad?"^^
^^Just before this elephant squirted my camera lens with water!^^
^^Elephants are such incredible and gentle animals to watch.^^
^^Little boy rhino dreams.^^
^^Can't get enough of these three boys of mine! Excited to be adding a fourth soon.^^
^^We all loved the seals and watched them swim for quite a while!^^
^^Spying on a giant Grizzly Bear through some dirty glass. Those animals are magnificent but I'm not sure I'd like to find myself that close to one in the wild.^^
^^Where to next?^^
^^Someone's legs were really tired after all that walking.^^
^^This beautiful Snow Leopard stopped pacing for a minute to stare at Levi. He seemed to be sizing him up for a meal!^^
^^A little refreshment from a lion's mouth is way more cool than a regular drinking fountain.^^
^^This Silverback Gorilla was incredible. I couldn't help staring back. I saw so much of our human selves in his face.^^
^^Discovering all the small animals, from frogs to porcupines to alligators!^^
^^I want one! Seriously. I want a tortoise for a pet.^^
^^Last but certainly not least, Jed got to see the rhinos standing up the second time we came to see them.^^
^^My boy after his mom's photo-loving heart. Here Jed is learning how to take pictures with Dad's phone.^^
Au Revoir Hogle Zoo! We'll be back another time for sure.