Finally the zoo post, plus if time allows a few more interesting items. We had a great time at the zoo. It was a family celebration of our 14th wedding anniversary. By the time we arrived at the zoo it was about 12:30. We had 4 and a 1/2 hours to look around. The girls were looking forward to seeing the red wolf. It is at least half way through the zoo. It turned out to be a bit disappointing as he just lay there. Last time we went to the zoo he was wandering all over the place. The children really love the playground there. It is set up as if you are ant size in a garden. Really fun. This day however about half the schools in NC were there, ok, probably not, but is sure seemed like it! So the park was crowded. A new addition to the zoo is a carousel. That was a hit as well. We were all worn out by the time we got to the end of the trail. The biggest hit for Jedidiah, of all things, was the bus ride back to our van!! He was totally thrilled and overcome with awe to be riding a bus. Very funny.
Jonah's sleep training is going very well. Today is day three. On the first day he cried for 9 minutes for each nap. It was a real cry. Yesterday he fussed for 4 minutes each nap. Only fussy, not crying. And this morning he fussed for 1 minute and this afternoon only 10 seconds! He is doing great. I really love this approach, taken from the Baby Whisperer. I am there with him the whole time, patting his bottom. I talk very softly, letting him know that he is tired and learning to fall asleep. It will be a little bit before I can just walk in and lay him down and leave, but we are on the right path. It only takes him a few minutes now to fall asleep. This is an improvement as it was taking 45 minutes to nurse him to sleep laying down with him. What a big boy!
And one last interesting matter. Tests. Yes, tests. Not the school kind, but the testing of your faith kind. Maybe not of our faith, but a refining test. Yes, that's it. You might recall our ice cream matter a few days back. We really felt that God spoke to us, telling us we did the right thing to commit to tithing. AHhhhh and it is soooo like the Lord to test ya to see if you are serious. So the other day Jeremiah comes home from work. He looked really, REALLY upset. He told me it was a very, VERY bad day. YIKES! My first thought was that he lost his job. I mean he really, REALLY looked upset. Thankfully that was not the case. It was 'only' his truck, and that it was undriveable, that it needs its whole clutch system replaced. This is no small ticket item. We had just gotten done going over the budget a few days ago so we knew we wouldn't be able to get it fixed anytime soon. So we go back over it to see where we were going to pull money from to pay for this fixer upper job. Wouldn't ya know that the amount we would need (thereabouts) is the amount of our monthly tithe. Hhhhmmmmm. For some reason I totally saw this as a test. We could get it fixed in another two weeks......if......we don't tithe. Or we can tithe and wait till mid January to get it fixed. You know those broadcasts that say, "this is a test, only a test, for the next minute.......if this were a true emergency...." and then you get to listen to that really annoying noise? Yes, I really saw this as a test. So we determined that we were going to stick to our conviction. That means Jeremiah will have to take the big van to work, and I will be left vehicle less. And the weird thing is that I'm totally fine with that! I was sitting there that night nursing Jonah in our darkened room. Just he and I in quietness, and I was just overwhelmed when I started counting my blessings. We are indeed rich! VERY, VERY RICH. Compared to others in the USA maybe not rich, but to the rest of the world we are. And we are rich in other areas besides our possessions. We are rich with children, we are rich with a wonderful body of believers that we fellowship with each week. We are rich in so many, many ways. And to go with out a van for a few months paled in comparison to what others have to do without. I was thankful it was his truck that broke and not our van. At least we will still be able to go places as a family! Ok, enough rambling!
I hope you enjoy the pictures.
Our first stop was to the alligators and swamp creatures. We are all fresh and ready to hike the zoo trail.
Moira with Tort the tortoise. Jed was actually a bit freaked out by him. The ropes you see are the only thing keeping the turtles in, and so maybe he thought they could get out of their pen?
The girls in front of the zoo park. They were actually done playing here. They would have loved to play a lot longer. But I can only handle keeping track of them in a large crowd for so long. Plus we only had so much time on our side before the zoo closed, and this is in the beginning of the trail.
Saoirse wasn't too sure about this slide. It was rather steep. But once she went down there was no stopping her.
Moira taking Jedidiah down the slide. Jed loves slides! He had a blast!
Moira and Flannery on a squash. This is as close to a squash as Flannery might get in her life time. She has a thing about veggies.....she hates them.
Jedidiah wasn't too sure about this gourd. I think there was a bug in there and he didn't like the close proximity he was in with it. Hmmm, not sure. He only stayed in there but a minute.
Isa, Moira and Flannery on a praying mantis. Ooooohhhhhh, Isabelle, I am sure you can be proud of me to not freak out about my children sitting on a praying mantis! Hey I've gotten a lot better about things like that. As long as they don't come in the mail!
Jedidiah walking along a vine with Daddy's help. It was so cute to see him trying out all the neat things to do at the park.
Daddy and Jed. Nothing like a huge lady bug to stomp on.
Moira was the only one willing enough to stay on top of the buffalo long enough to get a picture of. It really didn't seem like his head was too high up, but each girl freaked out when Jeremiah lifted them up onto it. And it really is odd the things that Moira is willing to do. She is such a girly girl and really was our most afraid child. But she's turned that around and will do things the other girls wouldn't do.
A group shot with the buffalo. It was much better on the ground :-)
Isabella made a bee line to the wolf at the carousel. Her she and Saoirse are enjoying themselves.
Do you think that Jedidiah is a *little* excited? Apparently he loved the ride!
Isa and Flan with the lions. We were almost to the end here.
Jedidiah in his glory on the bus!
Jedidiah sat next to Isa. Here he is looking out the window. We didn't get pictures of when we first got on when he was just about freaking out he was so excited. We wished we had taken video footage of it.
Little Jonah man all ready to head home. What a cutie pie.
And finally a family shot. We only got one. We lifted Jed out of the stroller to find that his pants were soaked!! Thankfully I came prepared with a few changes of clothing for him. But we didn't have time to change him before we got the picture taken. It's so funny because people think we have this huge family. But even looking at a group shot I just don't feel like I have this *HUGE* family. Strange.
Well that's it. I hope it was worth the wait. Off to clean some more. I was supposed to get together with a friend tomorrow to learn all about her living organisms in her kitchen (lacto-fermented foods), but we have to reschedule as we won't have a van! I'm so bummed! She did send me the recipe for the sourdough bread and once I secure a large amount of rye berries I shall undertake making my own. Maybe by then we can get together to compare notes. I have not had any good results when trying my hand at sourdough bread.