We Finally Went to the Zoo!

Today was a big deal for me – ever since early June I’ve wanted to head to the Akron Zoo and see the baby snow leopards that were born in early March.  Time and time again on the weekends I’d wanted to go but for some odd reason the kids ended up not wanting to go and me, not wanted to deal with miserable kids, opted to just stay home.

I’ve learned to pick my battles.

But today I didn’t care.  Today I had hubby on my side and together we faced the children and made them go.

It helped that girl child opted to get excited about taking her camera and taking her own pictures.  My boy child was his usual, stubborn self who felt no need to go.

In the end, we had a great time. Since we’d gone in May we didn’t do the entire zoo, we did the first half as hubby had an appointment at 2:30 and it was 85 degrees with high humidity and no one really felt like walking up the big hill to get to the lions and tigers and bears (oh my!).

Here are the babies – there are 2 boys and 1 girl snow leopard.  I’m not sure which 2 were out for us to actual see… but they are cute!  The one up close to the window quite enjoyed following my husband’s hand through the glass.  He swirled it around and the paw of the leopard just followed it.  I told him he’d probably have had a friend for life.

Also included are pictures of a python and jaguar.  Last is the quote from the Kimodo Kingdom – it houses the kimodo dragons, cafeteria and coral reef exhibit at the moment – and my daughter wanted a picture and it’s a great quote by Mahatma Gandhi – “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

Happy Tuesday Everybody!

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Happy Belated 4th of July

July 4th is one of my favorite holidays.  Being the history geek that I am, I get a kick out of wishing my country a happy 240th birthday.  Not just because I’m patriotic. The Revolutionary War is my favorite war (I like to think it was a war that was worth fighting for).

This year I seemed to enjoy it even more.  When I went to Boston last fall with my friend to see One Direction, and I brought up making sure that we hit the historical spots during the day (I couldn’t go to Boston and not see these great spots) it put the Revolutionary War in an entirely different perspective.

I saw the places where our forefathers met in secret to plan how we were going to declare our independence from an unjust government.  You think taxes are bad now?  They taxed us colonies way more than they taxed those in Britain just because we were the colonists. They tried to go about it in more peaceful ways (dumping tea and the like) but the British didn’t get it and punished us further.

So the Revolutionary War began. And as the ultimate underdog the United States won.

So many people dislike history and hate that we have to learn it (this would be my husband and daughter…. I think my son may be getting into it more like me) but history can be exciting and something we can learn from in an attempt to not make the same mistake twice.

These are photos from my Boston trip and the spots where Paul Revere, Samuel Adams and the like met to plan so we can be free today.

To the nation I say Happy Birthday.  To my forefathers I say Thank you.

My Weekend Getaway to Boston

Ever do that semi-wild and wacky road trip with a friend? Well, that was me the weekend of September 11 through September 13 when my friend and I, at her urging, got on a plane and headed to Boston to see the final concert of the US tour of One Direction.

Now let me give you a bit of backstory.  I know nothing of One Direction. My girl-child dislikes them, so my only reference to One Direction was their first song of That’s What Makes You Beautiful because I am that far behind with some of the current groups.

So I had less than a week to become versed in 1D music.  Well, I was lucky to finish listening to all the songs on their concert playlist the day we flew to Boston.

I have learned that going to Boston was probably the best place for me to go and see One Direction (however, getting to and from Gillette Stadium STINKS!!!  There is only 1 way to get their and 1 way to get back home and so you get stuck in like 3 miles of traffic that is just horrendous). Below is a photo my friend took on our return trip.

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 I felt bad as we missed the first opening act – Augustana – because of sightseeing, which was my idea.  I am a huge history buff and as it was my first time in the City of Boston (in 1990 I went on a trip to London with school and we had a layover in Boston, but I was never allowed to leave Logan airport), I had to see the city where the Revolutionary War began (yes, history geek is the proper term for someone like me, I am probably beyond a buff).  We saw a bunch of cool sites on our trolley ride and harbor cruise….

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Ship in Boston Harbor.

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Statue of Ted Williams outside Fenway Park (though a devout Yankees fan I appreciate the greats in baseball, Ted Williams is probably the greatest hitter).

11947953_870157839706799_7350217780486877341_oThe Old North Church that Paul Revere rode out on his (unsuccessful) midnight ride.

11999543_870157819706801_4015131736272976279_oPaul Revere’s Home – 16 kids, 2 bedrooms, need I say more?    12029627_870157746373475_8017543439966220874_o

The site of the Boston Massacre (only 5 people actually died)

Because my friend and I wanted to see the Old North Church and Paul Revere’s house, our trolley tour guide, Erik, told us it would take us 25 minutes to walk the entire Freedom Trail.  Well friends, let me inform you, it took about 1.5 hours just to walk not even half of it, as the church and home are about halfway on the trail.  We saw what we wanted to see, re-did the last 3 stops to get back to where we started and got to our rental car and drove to the hotel, got ready in a jiffy and then made our way to Gillette Stadium. Having gone to downtown Cleveland for dozens of events over the years, I was thinking that going to Foxboro would be a similar experience.  I was wrong (see above exit picture).

But as a person who really wasn’t totally familiar with their music, the members or anything… I really had a great time.  I was so self conscious that I wasn’t going to be “into” it enough for my friend (who just LOVES 1-D, despite just entering the world of being middle aged – it’s refreshing to see her perspective of just wanting the boys to be happy, I on the other hand found Liam to be rather cute while watching him at the concert – so what if I’m 20 years his senior – it could work). I really enjoyed the songs (so I’ll always be a sucker for peppy music) and left the show really not being able to listen to Girl Almighty enough times (seriously, this morning while typing up my blog posts I must have hit play on it about 6 times, and then it happened again at lunch).

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My girl child finds me to be “gross” because I enjoyed this concert… but how could I not… good music (even in the rain), an awesome friend on a fabulous weekend adventure.  It was awesome.  And I can honestly say I haven’t stopped thinking about the trip since I came home.

So if you ever have an opportunity to jet away for a few days and escape life doing something you never thought you’d do… I say go for it – it could be one of the best adventures you ever have!

Have you ever had such a weekend?