Monday, July 7, 2014

4th of July Summer Activities Post #3

This summer post is going to be out of order, but these photos were easiest to access so I'm posting these first. It has been fairly rainy in Florida lately. I think maybe there has been a tropical storm somewhere in the distance? I haven't been watching the weather, but we seem to get hit with showers almost every day at some point. (This was what we experienced last summer, too.On the 4th, it did rain on and off.
 That didn't stop Sissy and Dash from getting spending a couple of hours in our neighbor's pool. It sprinkled on them a lot of the time, but they didn't care.
 Dash was actually in the pool for about 5 hours, I think. We are fortunate to live on a street with many boys for him to play with. This particular family has 3 boys.
We enjoyed our festive meal (of veggie burgers, chili, and Smileys) out on our screened lanai on our new(ish) patio table.

dessert: layered "cheese"cake, blueberries,
Rice Dream (icecream), strawberries, and whipped "cream
 We met up with the same neighbors to have a poppers (those little snappers that pop when you throw them on the ground, etc.) war. This guy got his first experience with them.

This was his reaction to the pops.
He obviously was impressed.

It took us about 2 seconds to realize we couldn't trust Little Man with a sparkler. He was waving it all around, and I just knew he was going to catch me or him on fire before I was able to retrieve it from him.

I was happy to see Tornado right in the middle of things. Sometimes in physical activities such as these he tends to hold back or want to go inside.

It was boy heaven all night.

 We talked about how different C's life is than the other kids'. Look at him running right after all of them. He is constantly surrounded in big kids and activities. I don't know if he realizes how much smaller he is.
The kids voted they would rather shoot off smaller fireworks in the driveway and play with the neighbors rather than going to a big fireworks show. That was fine for Ryan's and my tired selves. It was a happy 4th!

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Summer Activities 2014 Post #2

We finally got to use our groupons for Safari Wilderness Ranch. It was about an hour drive for us, near Lakeland, Florida.
The best part of our day was feeding lemurs. They were unbelievable. I want one.

There were two lemur areas, one was a large netted/fenced area, and there were others in a barn with outside access.

They were so sweet the way they'd hold the kids' arms while they were waiting for another piece of a grape. They were very gentle.
The bummer part of the day was after spending a little time in this barn area, we moved on to the other lemur area. Little One here had just loved feeding them, and he did a perfect job. But the lady in the other area wouldn't let him. I told her I was letting him use my ticket (because he got in free), but she said tickets were not transferrable. She added that they don't really let kids his age feed them anyway. He was sad and confused about why he couldn't feed them anymore, and why the lady was making me hold him. This made taking pictures of the other kids nearly impossible. Anyway, it just made me sad and put a damper on my day. I hate (what I deem to be) arbitrary rules.
 They were so, so cute and just looked like little kids sitting around.

After feeding the lemurs and oohing over the colony of guinea pigs, we loaded onto the safari vehicle for our tour.
water buffalo
They also were able to feed the water buffaloes that came right up to the vehicle. Sissy said they were a little slobbery.

Tornado loves zebras (I think because black and white are two of his favorite colors.), so these were a treat - especially seeing the baby and momma (who even stopped to nurse).

I'm sure there will be a trip advisor review show up one day from someone who would have really enjoyed the tour if it weren't for the obnoxious poop smell. My kid felt it was an appropriate time to dirty his diaper amidst the warm air and breeze created when the vehicle was in motion. Hopefully, they thought it was just the water buffaloes.

A lot of the animals came right up to the jeep. There were so many animals that I didn't photograph. It was sweet to listen to the kids' excited chatter all day. Our tour guide was very knowledgeable and told us plenty of information at many different stops. The kids were impressed with the z-donks and learning that they are good at border control, even once fighting off an alligator.
It started raining at the very end of our tour (which is a typical thing to happen on a summer day in Florida). The covered vehicle kept us fairly dry. It was so hot out, the kids were dreaming about the popsicles they had seen by the cash register in the gift shop. They hit the spot.
The woman who was working in the gift shop, the one who had taken our tickets, gave them the popsicles as a gift because a goat had head butted Little One (in the stomach I think) making him cry. He was fine, and it was really nice of her and helped ease my poutiness over the other lady and the lemur feeding injustice.

Overall, I know the kids really appreciated this day and would love to go back anytime!