Tag Archive | butterflies

Re-visiting the Zoo

We are very lucky that our state has two zoos. The one we frequent relies on donations only which is terrific since to take our whole family to the other one is over 100.00. Curse of the large family when it comes to field trips. While we meant to head over to the zoo on the 1st of July to celebrate Canada Day it was just too busy. So we took off for the beach HERE and instead went back at the beginning of the day on the 5th. Perfect!

New metal piece out front!

New metal piece out front!

Close up detail.

Close up detail.

We never quite see everything on a trip. Which is just fine, since this zoo is affordable and not that long of a drive away. But we did see some wonderful animals.20170705_105230


20170705_105810For the most part I see the relevancy of zoos as an educational tool, a breeding program for endangered and critical animals, and often the only chance we will EVER have to see many of these animals in person. BUT the gorillas are hard. I just do not enjoy visiting them at all.20170705_110414

They were just so ... resigned to it all.

They were just so … resigned to it all.

Lemurs on the other hand, are a family favourite.20170705_111257

And the seasonal butterfly exhibit. That is always a wonderful experience.20170705_112143

On Emanuel's hat

On Emanuel’s hat







Of course we took some time with the penguins and the seahorses. 

With our maple leaf friend

With our maple leaf friend





20170705_102937So we return often and share equally as often. Hopefully not too boring for those who check back here often. What can I say? We do love to share what we see!



We never noticed this before

We never noticed this before

Yup a 4 yr old, and she is almost 7 at this point!

Yup a 4 yr old, and she is almost 7 at this point!

So many statues to pose with.

So many statues to pose with.

She dressed to match

She dressed to match


Zander is far right





3 Days of Making USA Our Home

The road to Canada was smooth as silk, the time to pack amazingly SHORT… We followed their saga via texts and then correspondence with the people they saw in Canada. Thank you so much Kristen, Fydo, Chris, Chris and of course Karyn… for putting up with Ken, for holding stuff for us, for keeping track of the guys. A major part of me wishes I could have been there, an even larger part was glad not to be confined to a vehicle for that length of time. Nana figured that it was a much easier drive on the guys due to its 2 hour planning time. No time to focus on the length of the drive.

Thank you so much Karyn for the bag of special stuff too!

That kept us close to home for another day to the great unhappiness of the boys. I, however, managed to write TWO letters in one. I really need to practice my penmanship. After the first page it gets a lot more sloppy than I would like. So more incentive on MY end to add to the letters… again if you are not on our pen pal list… please send me your name and info or email so we can exchange addresses. 

Of course we had time for some photos. She loves this dress and every time she wears it wants to take pictures

Anyway Saturday was nice and quiet and sunny and … lonely. It is amazing how much we miss our menfolk while they are gone. We did get ANOTHER pen pal letter in the mail today though! I honestly am loving the mail on Saturdays. A nice surprise on a weekend. The excitement in regards to our mail has already started. So on Monday we drafted a response!

Saturday night Arby’s picnic in the basement.

Pretty much Saturday, Sunday and then today (Monday) were all at home days. Sunday just after lunch the menfolk made their way here. They actually made the round trip in less than 3 days! That included sleep, two border crossings (both of which went well) and filling the trailer. We rushed right into the U-Haul when they got here and got it emptied well in time to avoid paying for 4 days as well!

Welcome home Daddy and Baba courtesy of Gavin (I had to write it out for him but we worked together on the spelling of welcome)

Waiting for the guys

Time to work

So Sunday was basically, get the U-Haul empty, return it, empty the Envoy and.. NAP! I think we were all worn out. But wow, the guys did an amazing job getting everything to fit in the space they had AND on top of that, it takes up so much LESS space in the garage. I am slightly afraid of when we are able to get our own place… exactly what are we going to have to fill it??? 

All the way from Canada in one piece, my Shandai Kurylo original!

Trying on a find

We did find quite a bit of what we were sure we needed immediately Sunday night… Ken’s second monitor… clothes for everyone… and after a tearful late night search – my dress from Chris and Chris’ wedding to wear to the Renaissance Fair! My friend Shandai works it and is getting us tickets. I am not sure if we will all go or just Ken and myself but I am so excited!! All I need to do is hunt down my hair things or come up with a style to do myself. 

Not THE dress, but the OTHER dress

Anyway… while we did not go far or do much, the kids were over the moon to see Daddy and Baba. And their toys… clothes and whatever we have unearthed so far. Everyone is officially well clothed again… options!!! And the boys have their precious trains and Legos! 

Today was a little more organized though schooling except our pen pal response was put on hold while I worked on opening and labeling buckets. I managed to complete 18 buckets and dismantle one of the few cardboard boxes before running out of steam and having to face that there is stuff in our room that requires sorting first. I am trying to figure out creative ways to keep stuff packed away but available as school and life must go on and I know that it will be some time before we can get into our own place. 

We had another first since getting here… Ken had his very first interview! He thinks it went well and now has code to do. On top of that on recommendation of my friend Shandai’s boyfriend he has applied at another company for 3 different positions. I have to say THAT company would be a perfect fit for him. So here’s hoping either the interview or this new company pans out and moves us along on our goals to getting our own place and starting to get our feet under us once again! 

The only big negative today was sadly related to my eyes. For some reason this year after years of relief I am getting back into the hay fever issues. I think I got some dust in my eye and then with them being so dry from some random plant that apparently I do not agree with it has NOT been a fun day. So tomorrow I am hoping we can get some over the counter remedies from Target. I am not sure what there is here in the states as I know it is different than in Canada where they all are. I was hoping to avoid the medications but I miss my contact lenses… oh and breathing better… 

The plan for the rest of the week… dig out the math books I know are there, find our supplies, educate on the butterflies and Mars rover before the interest fades… Oh and find those toys and other objects of interest that the kids are SURE are there. I still have to hunt down the tv remote for one of Ken’s favourite possessions – our personal tv.

I am hoping to squeeze some sewing in on that list but with the garage full of unlabeled buckets and our bedroom a stack of randoms… well I have my mission and 5 kids to balance so we shall see how it goes! Wish me luck! One more tie to Canada cut and one more root put down here in the USA!

Mobbing the Daddy and Baba

Off to the Zoo

July 15

What is the best way to have one last bash with good friends before everything changes? Well… if you have kids a trip to the best zoo in the province is definitely a way to go! And, on top of that, allowed us to use up our zoo bucks (a Christmas gift from Kathy and the only way we would have been able to make it to this particular zoo). We even convinced Esther to join us in the fun!

Waiting on the rest of our group

So after we made it into the zoo itself and the Bleau family caught up with us it was time to see the newest attraction at the zoo (and one you would remember from the LAST time I went to this zoo with just Kathy and the girls)… the penguins! This time the line up was short so we went INTO the exhibit where you get us really close to all the penguins they have. It was noisy and splashy and the kids LOVED IT! 

My big kids

Close up and personal

Out from behind the camera… it was not an overly warm day which was PERFECT for zoo visiting.

Don’t forget the peacock who was right at the front entrance… on the way back he was showing off ALL his tail feathers… so we got the best display ever!

Checking out his reflection


Even with 5 adults it was a bit like herding kittens but we managed quite nicely. With so many little and not so little boys we HAD TO run through the new dinosaur exhibit. So much excitement running here and there with Darryl at the front of the pack egging them on! 

What a group!

Echo with a favourite aunty

Strike a pose

The leader of the pack

That left Sharon, Esther, Echo and myself to bring up the rear. With the aunties more than willing to walk the baby. Note that miss Echo went through MULTIPLE costume changes during our 3 hours at the zoo… for some reason zoo and walking and all that means pee through ALL your clothes!

Miss Esther

After dinosaurs it was time to see more animals. And a variety of those there was to see!!!


Emanuel was amazed that there were so many types of animals in the “same box”


Add in a bathroom break in the African exhibit.

VERY necessary

And a play break at the playground…

Birdies at the park and super close

With her god mommy

Baby and the Beasts

We managed to visit my favourite exhibit – the butterfly one. And with less kids in the zoo it was MUCH calmer which meant better pictures of butterflies at rest! I will share more of my favourites in a separate entry. 

A 5 day old moth

So many on one bush!

After the butterflies it was time for Emanuel’s most requested ELEPHANTS!

Emanuel and his super special pose

We took a photo together here our last trip to this zoo together… when Emanuel was less than a year old!!!

Riding the stone elephants

And then after a few wrong turns… the baby tiger was out for show! 

Baby tiger AWWW

With the tigers our crew was done in and it was time to head back home. Of course with a stop off half way to see Karyn, collect passports (yup EARLY) and have lunch at Quiznos. YUM!

We took up 3 tables!

Hungry and tired

Definitely a day to remember. And I have the souvenir penguin to add to all of that! I am so glad that I got the chance to take our kids there and with such good friends too boot!

Siblings of the heart