Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Vacationing Last Hurrah

Well, tomorrow starts School. While I'm glad to have a slightly more definitive schedule, the laziness of summer is always nice. Because of having to be ready to spend a thick wad of cash on plane tickets to Eastern Europe for Jenny, we've kept to our backyard paradise this summer. We did a day trip a while back out to The Shrine of Divine Mercy in Stockbridge Massachusetts, but other than that we'd just relaxed or went on crazy adoption adventures to state buildings around us. This weekend with my Dad getting a long weekend for Labor Day, we ventured out about an hour and a half to Norwalk, Connecticut for an Aquarium visit. Addisu is enthralled with animals and literally spent about 15 minute or more just staring at some of the exhibits. I had been out there back in my Fifth Grade year of school as our big "Last Field trip," and they had greatly improved their exhibits since.

My little traveling buddy. Sassy and funny any time, anywhere. Havin' some fun in the car on the way down.

We arrived in good timing and were ready to start our exciting day at the aquarium, we also had this guy sitting there to welcome us:

A BIG, inflatable meerkat awaiting us. They had an entire exhibit dedicated to them. Amazing little creatures indeed (more on them later).

My Dad bought our tickets and all that spiel and then we started our day with lunch in this beautiful cafe they have.

I'm a sucker for architecture and shots like this. It was really amazing to see all the boughs and chords making up this huge room.

From there we headed onto the exhibits. Probably the biggest hit of the day was these guys:

The seals. Such amazing creatures. I really couldn't comprehend how such big, blubbery creatures could be such amazing swimmers (and quite graceful at that), but that's just God the Creator for ya. :D

Next were some fellow Africans for Addisu to see (well, kinda)! They had this new African Penguin exhibit from when I had been there, and they were pretty funny.

These things would give any photographer a good chuckle. They clearly get the fact they're not short on attention from us crazy humans and they'll pose and look directly at you and the whole nine yards. On top of that, they'll swim straight up to the glass and stare you straight in the eyes. Personality much? :D

From there we went into probably one of the most daring exhibits you'll ever see in an aquarium.

A sting Ray pool. While there's nothing daring about looking, you're encouraged to touch them, and they've been known to come up and splash you.

Addisu had quite a few  laughs/shrieks when he got splashed by them, but nobody but me was man enough to actually touch them. :)

From there, we did the travelling exhibit they had: the meerkats. They're pretty well known at this point, between silly things like Timone from Lion King to actual documentaries like Meerkat Manor, but I still didn't know  a whole lot about them. They truly are amazing little critters. while they're in a community and all sleep in one big hollow together (figured I'd spare you that image), each is so dedicated to their job that they are almost a community of individuals.

The exhibit was pretty elaborate, and once they all woke up from their nap, they were everywhere.

The rest of the day was interesting as well. We saw an exhibit with some Fish from the Long Island Sound (at which my camera's battery croaked) and after that we went to the aquarium's IMAX Theater. They had a couple different options for what to see, but we saw a documentary on ocean life. Watching the extreme wonder's of God's creation on a six story tall screen was absolutely breathtaking. Even Addisu was amazed by it (so much that he conked out on Dad :D ). I don't think we realize how much we don't know or understand about God's true power and awesomeness. It was as if you saw another world entirely, a whole other eco-system, yet it's part of our world. How amazing it was.

After that, we headed to a nearby beach so Addisu and Gab could see the ocean, feel the sand on their feet. I love beaches and large bodies of water. I could stand and squish the wet sand between my toes while the water flows in and out all day. I absolutely loved it, and needless to say next your our little blond addition will get to visit it as well.

So all in all, it was a great last Hurrah to a great summer. Now starts the school adventure...

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