Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Walking on the WILD Side

Yesterday we were blessed with a visit from Baby Sister, her cute Hubby and equally cute Kiddos. They live in OHH-klahoma and are on vacation. We let Cute Hubby do some business in town and Baby Sister and I took all the Kiddos to the Zoo. I took lots of pictures...some are actually worth looking at. I took more pictures of the kids than I did the animals. And because I was always a little behind everybody (it's hard walking so much with this metal hip and leg) I have a lot of pictures of everybody's backside.

I'm not sure what we are looking at here. But it was the first picture I had on my camera that was in focus. I take it where I can get it. Yay me.


Loverly. There are huge fish in this pond. At one point I thought I saw something floating in there that suspiciously looked like the Loch Ness Monster.

Payge is doing her best monkey impression. She is pretty stinkin' smart. She gets that from her Aunt Beke.

Our little zoo lets the waterfowl (and peacocks) run free. One of these gooses bit my nephew when we tried to feed the goats at the petting zoo. It was quite the ordeal.

I think we were looking for the black bear. Brynn, however, would rather pose for the camera. She's something else! She gets that from her Aunt Beke.

See what I mean?

How about a little Air Guitar?

This elephant was playing with the buckets above him. Josiah said, "Mom! These elephants are so old. Look at their wrinkles!" I need to get that kid out more often.

Random sprinkler moment!

Nothing like a good spritz.

 Our camera shy kids.

Oops! Here comes another one!

Somebody (and I won't say who) called this little deer statue a mule. I will give you a hint. He is the only one in this picture who lives in Missouri.

I had to make Cade pose for me. He was all about seeing the sites and moving on.

Can we go see something else now?  You can tell by his body language he was over it.

Now this mountain lion was frisky. He ran around his cage like a ....well, a mountain lion.

I think I need to keep her. Her momma insists that she would wear me out, but I know about rooter-tooters. I am raising one.

I know. I'm sorry. I didn't even realize I was taking a picture of a giraffe sniffing another giraffe's heinie until after it had snapped. But I just had to share. One can get quite a diverse education at the zoo.

This giraffe looks like he's saying "Can you believe this guy?" That is if giraffes could talk.

 I'd take him home with me, too. If he would fit in my purse. Or my car. Or my house. Maybe I need to think this one out.

At the end of our morning we took a ride on the little train.

It was quite the adventure.

Isn't she just yummy?  Maybe if I hide her in my coat closet for a little while her momma won't notice she's missing and go back to OHH-klahoma.

After the zoo we had lunch at one of the many Chinese food restaurants and then I brought the kids back to my house so their parents could shop a little bit. Later on we all had supper at my house and then they took off for my mom and dad's farm.  I wished they lived closer. I wouldn't have to entertain urges about kidnapping my nieces.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Running A Fowl

I'm a little behind. This actually feels like it should be my Monday. I woke up this morning ready to conquer my week and all that goes with it...only it's Thursday. Oops. I'm just a few days behind. Last week Josiah and I went to my parent's farm. I plan to post on all the fun we had, but I am waiting to pirate some of my mom's pictures on our next visit this weekend. Josiah had a blast. He ran with the dogs, fished and romped and stomped all over the farm. We also volunteered a few days at the Nursing Home my mom works at in Joplin. I will have to write a little about his experiences later...let's just say he made many friends.

Our summer has been fairly busy. As usual we are poorer than Job's turkey (I have some questions about Job's turkey that can't be answered in this breezy blog post) so we are making our own fun! We are fortunate to live in a town that has lots of great parks and free things to do. This week Josiah and I loaded up a few water bottles & apples and made our way over to one of the best kept secrets in Springfield. It's really not a secret, but I everytime we go I can't believe that something so lovely and well-maintained is free! It is the Botanical Gardens. Flora, Fauna, Wildlife. What more could a girl ask for (other than a mani-pedi)?

Warning: This post contains lots 'o pictures. I am practicing taking shots that don't decapicate folks.

We aren't sure who this fella is. But he looked like he needed a hug.

One of the great adventures at this park is feeding the ducks & geese. Unfortunately, after we had taken our walk through the park we went  up to the new Botanical Center building and saw a little flyer there "Please don't feed the ducks & geese." Ooops.

This guy is going after our  bread contraband. Look at his beak. Nobody told him about the "Do Not Feed.." policy.

There were some very lovely Canadian Geese there. This momma had babies she was watching out for.  She stared me down like nobody has ever stared me down before.

Her babies. Little Canadian Geese. They are kinda of ugly ducklingish. But don't tell their momma I sad that.

Momma Goose eventually started hissing at Josiah. Nobody hisses at my baby. I was raised in the country. I know my fowl. And geese can be pretty ornery. We took our illegal bread and moved on.

Except that then we ran into him. Isn't he a cutie?

This is the English Garden. I like to look at it and imagine that I have just waltzed out of Pemberley to find Colin Firth...Never mind. 

A new addition to this park. Where there is something to climb....The boy must climb.

And make crazy faces.

And more crazy faces.

There we go. Caught him with a 'normal face." I also realized that my camera was on the 'dusk' setting. Let there be light!

Lilies. Love lilies. I love the name Lily. But there is a small issue. I am allergic. Put me in a room with a lily and my sinuses start to close up and fall out. If that's possible.

Which has been a problem for me from time to time. Years ago when Troy and I were youth pastors our church had a tradition of filling the church with live Easter Lilies. Cue snot. I can barely look at a silk lily without wheezing.

Look Mom! These flowers are tall! Yes. And they look like they might reach out and grab me at any minute. Anybody got a kleenex?

There were many more beautiful spots in the gardens. So much so that when we walked past this tree, Josiah said, "Look, Mom! A naked tree!" Just don't climb it Josiah. I don't want hordes of botanists after us...We are already in trouble with the Fowl Folks.

Last picture and stop of the day. The new playground by the new Botanical Center building is pretty cool. But my boy is a swing kind of guy. He headed straight towards the swings and there he stayed.  That is until I told him we were going to go to McDonald's for one of those .49 cones. He's got his priorities after all.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Date Day

Well. It's summer in the Ozarks. The Studly Muffin has broken down and agreed to turn on the air conditioner. Trust me. He is frugal. We don't turn on the air until the house starts resembling a Turkish Bath (not that I've ever been to a Turkish Bath). Don't tell, but there have been a few occasions that I have turned on the air after he left for work in the afternoon. When a girl feels the urge to sit around in the all-together in front of the box fan spritzing herself with lemon water...you know something has to be done. I know. TMI.

Today my boys and I went on a Family Date. Our dates usually involve a Thrift Store or three, lunch or dinner out and/or a favorite free spot. Today we started at a Thrift store and ended with a Thrift Store. In the middle we had lunch, stopped for some much needed fishing tackle and I even got about 10 minutes alone at the $1 Jewelry Galore. Good Times!

For Lunch we ate at a popular burger restaurant that sounds slightly naughty. I wonder why they named it Fuddruckers. Were they trying to be provocative? Or is it some sort of term used for something?  Who knows. Maybe I don't want to know.

In any event, I sure loved me a burger. And because I am counting calories I only ate half of my steak fries. And the burger. And some really yummy steak fry dipping sauce. And I am not even counting the Frozen Lemonade I had at McDonald's later in the day.

The boys enjoyed their lunch, too. Josiah is the most predictable restaurant orderer ever. He always has chicken tenders. He likes to dip them in Ketchup and Mustard. He's not allowed to have Mustard without supervision at home (long story). When I caught him dabbing it on his nose at lunch today I knew that the Mustard Issues are far from being resolved.

Isn't he a Studly Muffin? He also looks like he's ready to smack somebody. I think the after-dinner show is about ready to begin.

Anybody who raised or is raising boys is used to the constant rough and tumble mess that goes on.

I occasionally try and remind them of proper dining etiquette and civilized public behavior.

But I don't think anybody listens to me. And it appears that something is about to go down! Thankfully, it doesn't look like Mustard is involved.

 I'm sure this move has a name.

This move is sure to win somebody a trip to get an ice cream cone later!

Or to Bass Pro. My guys are Fishing Fanatics. They needed to replenish their fishing supplies.

I just had to. I had some ideas about what kind of bait you need for Cranky People...but Bass Pro didn't have any of that kind of stuff.

No matter how  many times we go to Bass Pro, Josiah wants to go stare at the Water Fall. Today was craazzy. The tourists were out in swarms. You can always tell who those guys are who are experiencing their first trip to the "Grandaddy of All Sporting Stores." They wander around with blissful, yet slightly bewildered expressions on their faces.

So a good day was had by all. Next week Josiah and I are staying a week with my Mom and Dad. Troy has assured me he will be okay without us. He knows exactly where the Ramen Noodles and Spaghettioes are kept. 
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