Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Let's see if I can blow Blogger's mind

zoo 3

I knew I took lots of pictures today at the zoo, but when I sat down to edit them, I saw the full scale of my shutterbugness.

(Shutterbugness? Is that even a word? Guess it is now. Somebody call Webster's - I have an addition to their next dictionary!)

(Also - why did no one, including my shutterbug of a sister, tell me that when you upload photos to Flickr, they put them in reverse order of how you uploaded them? Very annoying.)

Yes, after a several-month hiatus, I have once again uploaded my photos to my Flickr account. Mainly because I needed to upload lots of pictures, and I didn't want to have to wrestle with Blogger.

You might want to take a potty break and grab a glass of tea. This could take awhile.

Oh what fun we had today! There were enough chaparones that I only had to be responsible for Anna Marie. Plus, everyone was on their own, free to roam the zoo until the appointed meet-up time. I had checked Anna Marie out before we left the school, so she got to ride home with me.

Amanda said she wished she'd been there, because it sounded "delightful." And it was! It was sunny, but there was a surprising amount of shade around. We had our lunches, so we got to stop whenever we wanted and eat. Thankfully I also had some cash, because we also needed other refreshments during our three-hour tour.

(A three-hour tour!)

zoo 1

The front entrance. I haven't actually been to the zoo (I think) since my cousin Shawn had his birthday party there, when he was like, five, and he's going to be 26 this summer. That's a long time, y'all!

zoo 2

There are all these really cool animal statues at the front entrance.

zoo 4

We procured a map (from a guy who tried to charge us $10!) and Anna Marie quickly became a Map Nazi. And yes, that's a random piece of yarn around her hand. She got off the bus with it, and I have no idea where it came from. She took it off soon thereafter.

zoo 5

Tigers! That water looked so cool and inviting, I wanted to brave the big cats and jump in. Obviously, I didn't.

zoo 6

I don't remember if they had meerkats before The Lion King and Meerkat Manor came along or not.

zoo 7

The snake house. Of course, the interior did not lend itself to photography, but rest assured that the future herpatologist that shares my last name was EXTREMELY excited to get here.

zoo 8

I suppose that in order to get two pandas, Memphis had to promise to make a big tribute to China. That's the only way I could think they could justify the scale of this exhibit. There was this bell . . .

zoo 9

And this statue (which Anna Marie thought was the dog with its baby, but I'm not so sure this is a loving pose), and, finally . . .

zoo 10

The pandas. They were in separate enclosures, each having lunch. There were lots and lots of other things in the panda's pavilion, but I didn't want to go, you know, overboard with the pictures.

zoo 11

I need a sign like this hung around my head at all times.

(Hey! We're halfway done!)

zoo 12

There was a baby giraffe. I wish I'd have gotten a picture of what happened next - a giant door opened and the giraffes walked through. Guess they must've been hungry, which got us hungry, so we headed to a pavilion to eat.

zoo 13

Anna Marie had a sack lunch from the school. I was going to be all "hip" and bring my beloved couscous and vegetables, but I ran out of time. So when I ran to get gas this morning, I picked up an apple and a banana and threw them into my tote bag.

(Well, I paid for them first. The point is, that's what I had for lunch. I was STARVING when we got finished, but thankfully this was an auction day so we swung by for something from the cafeteria. We got there just as the line was being taken down!)

Anyway. Back to the zoo.

Anna Marie was also excited about the monkeys. Unfortunately, the orangutans couldn't be bothered.

zoo 14

How rude! The penguins were much more obliging.

zoo 15

This is the original zoo entrance, from when I was a kid. Also, probably from when my parents were kids. I'd actually forgotten about it until today.

zoo 16

It was starting to get hot by this point, but fortunately there was a concession stand nearby where Anna Marie could get a fudge pop and I could get a bottle of water.

zoo 17

zoo 18

zoo 19

(We're in the home stretch now!)

zoo 20

The Egyptian theme continues throughout the park. You know, since Memphis is named after an Egyptian city and all. Very original.

zoo 21

She even talked me into putting a penny (and two quarters!) into the penny-squishing machine.

zoo 22

And then she had the gall to be upset that it was bent! When I was a kid, there was this machine that dispensed animals (plastic? wax? I don't remember) for a small fee. I didn't see any of those, which disappointed me. I also didn't see the peacocks that used to roam freely. I guess they attacked one too many visitors.

She fell asleep on the way to the auction, and then woke up enough to eat something and help wipe down a couple of tables. We went to Gordman's on the way home where I picked up a couple of nice tank tops to layer under shirts. I'd also promised her a trip to a "real" bookstore, so we went across the parking lot to Books-a-Million where she got a chocolate milk and a book on snakes, and I got a skim milk latte.

Tomorrow is the last day of school, y'all! And not a moment too soon - Anna Marie's doctor is setting her up with a specialist so we can get to the bottom of these respiratory problems that keep cropping up. It'll be nice not to have to worry about missing school for a while.

She's still coughing some, but not nearly as much. She's taking about four different medicines, but tomorrow is the last day for the Prednisone. The hives are still cropping up here and there, but she's still taking Benadryl and I'm using hydrocortisone creme when it itches. I have read, though that it's common for hives to do that after a severe allergic reaction.

Thanks so much for all of your prayers and good thoughts during this time - and please keep remembering us! I'm just exhausted with all this, but I'm also thankful because I know there are some much sicker kids out there whose parents have to go through much, much more.

I need to get off here and let Blogger cool down get to bed. In addition to being off today, we're on a short deadline because of Memorial Day, and I have to get her from school tomorrow!


Amanda said...

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Why was I at work?! That looks so wonderful!

Susie Q said...

Okay, let me catch up here...I am SO sorry that my sweet red haired girl has felt so bad. I will keep her in my prayers and heart as always...
I hope they can discover exactly how to treat her cough. Poor baby.
I have had hives and God Bless her, they are awful! My nephew had them recently (from an antibiotic) and it is so sad to watch them be miserable.
I was so happy though, to see these wonderful pictures of the zoo and to know she had such a good time.
She truly does have one of the sweetest faces I have ever known.
: )
I loved all the photos. We have been told by others that the Zoo in Memphis is a gem! LOVE that panda exhibit! Brave AM to love snakes so much! Me? Such a coward...I would jump into the panda enclosure or a lion den with little to no fear but show me a snake with 5 panes of bullet proof glass between us and I would faint in terror!

Hugs to you all and especially that
precious girl. You get some rest too sweetie. I know this has worn you out!


wendster said...

Hey .. . your zoo had the HOOK UPS. Pandas? And such a nice tiger display? VERY NICE.
And I LOVED that you had so many pictures. I loves me those pictures from places I don't live so I can feel like I visited. If there were a blogger feature that allowed me to taste the cous cous, I'd be all over that too.
Glad AM is feeling better, and hope they find her allergy. (Hannah was allergic to wheat, rye, and barley, specifically: gluten, her whole life and having horrible reactions to it and they didn't figure it out til she was like 12. If they get stumped, it never hurts to ask for a "celiac" blood test. (celiac symptoms are usually gastric: gas, diahrea, constipation, and failure to thrive, grow, mature. Stunts your growth and absorbs all of your nutrients. It's like starving but you don't die.) Once we got her off of gluten she shot up like 6 inches in one year or something close to it.
Who's watching AM while you work and she's off of school?

Melissa said...

Amanda - there have been PLENTY of times when I was at work, and you were out gallavanting, so I figure we're even.

Sue - thanks for the well wishes. This has truly been a rough week and a half or so, but hopefully we'll see what the real deal is and get some help.

Wendy - Jason only works in Memphis one or two days a week, and she's probably going to spend the night with my mom (who also works the cafeteria) on those nights and ride up with her. She's getting old enough that it's not such a big deal for her to be up there for a few hours. I think they're even putting her to "work" wiping down tables and such!

Lissete said...

I'm glad that AM was able to o on her field trip. I love zoos. Unfortunately, I will not step foot in ours between May & September. Unless I want to fry. Anyhoo, your pics are great and I would love to visit that zoo.

Sheila said...

I loved looking at all of your zoo pictures! I love the zoo. And our zoo still has those machines that make the plastic animals! My son Tony used to like to collect them when he was little.
That fudge bar that AM was eating looked a little tasty! :)

Rachel said...

It looks like you had a wonderful day. As a teacher I usually miss the greatness of the field trip because of the stress of keeping up with 21 first graders!

doodlebugmom said...

I love your pix, sounds like you have a great time. I love the zoo.

Amanda said...

Fair enough, Melissa. I'm just J that you got to hang out with Anna Marie on an awesome day at the zoo!

Paige said...

Love the pictures of the tigers and the pandas! Oh, and that cute little animal with red hair eating a fudgsicle!