San Diego Zoo January 31, 2012

Can one picture show the
different personalities of 4 kids?
Highlights from today: (Click here for pictures)
Keaton ate right when we went to sleep and then again in the middle of the night.  When I went to get Keaton's bottle, I must have said "milk" aloud and this alone woke Campbell up.  Robby was able to get her back to sleep pretty quickly.  I am pretty certain that Graham was in our bed then as well.  When we woke up this morning, Anderson was in the bed as well-this bed was not large enough for 4 but we had made it work.
We are only about 4 miles from the zoo so we didn't have to hurry too much.  We had a leisurely breakfast-Anderson, Graham and Campbell went to breakfast with Grannymom and Grandpa.  Then Reagan, Keaton and us came and met them.  They were all sitting eating fairly quietly and before too long we were back upstairs regrouping to leave for the day.  
We were one of the first few cars parked at the zoo.  We had a few minutes before they opened to take some pictures.  And then we headed in.  The zoo is huge with lots of trails to walk.  They are windy and up and down hills so to me it was impossible to tell where we had been and where we were going.  I feel like we covered most of it but who knows.  
We first walked down the monkey path and through a couple of aviarys.  Then we rode up a escalator type thing which of course involves folding the strollers, carrying 2 bags, holding Keaton and clutching Campbell's hand.  What would we do if we didn't have Grannymom and Grandpa on the trip with us.  
When we were walking around the monkeys, I told Campbell to hand me her pacifier so the monkeys wouldn't get it.  And she did for awhile and took it back from me and at the next cage, when she walked up to peer in she put her hand to her mouth so that monkey wouldn't get her paci.  When we get home, poor Campbell will have to say goodbye to that paci.  She is super addicted to it and wants it all day long.  As soon we get on a ride, she will give it to us so the ride can go.  And then when we get off, she asks for it back.  My plan is to have one good restful night at home and then get rid of that paci-oh, but the poor other kids sleeping in her room.  They may have to sleep somewhere else for the night (hopefully just one night!).
The kids weren't too impressed with the sleeping Panda bears.  But were very happy to have so many sculptures to climb on, in and around.  And then we had a quick snack before moving on to see more things.  I remember at least 5 elephants but there might have been more.  The elephant area was at least 10 times the size of ours at the Little Rock zoo.  Reagan was happy to hear that they had an elephant there named Mary-like the Mary elephant that was at the Little Rock zoo.  
We eventually rode the Skyfari ride-the gondola type thing across the entire zoo.  This was a highlight for the kids and at the other side of the zoo, we saw the polar bears.  I was disappointed that they were not playing in the water like they had 10 years ago when we were at the zoo.  But the kids were fine with it since there were lots of other things to do and look at in that area.  Sometime during the day, Anderson looked at some animal and said "that is the cutest animal I have ever seen."  I don't remember what animal he was looking at, but it was some big, ugly, filthy animal-nothing about it was cute at all!  But to him, it was the "cutest thing."  He won't have a hard time finding a wife.
We then rode back over to the other side and caught the bus.  The bus took us around the entire zoo with a narrator.  It lasted about 35 minutes and the kids did really good listening-probably helped that they were sitting on the top deck of the double decker bus.  It was a nice day outside so it was comfortable on the bus despite the sun.  
We give the zoo 3.5 out of 5 stars.  Of course, we are coming down off of a Disney high and that could skew our rating.  We would recommend the zoo but the layout seemed confusing and we could never get a good plan of which way to go.  The animals were out and visible but we never felt like we saw tons-probably due to our lack of a plan.  Next time, if we have a choice again (as we did this time due to our citypass), we will pick the San Diego Safari Park.  The kids did have alot of fun though and enjoyed seeing all of the animals so that made it worth while.
By then it was time to leave the zoo, the animals with us were getting restless.  So we stopped at Old Town to walk around a bit and eat supper.  We ate supper at the same restaurant we ate at before-they were making tortillas right there in the window.  I should have just asked for tortillas for supper and oh, if they would have had some honey, I would have been in heaven.  Robby did get a really good cheese dip (pretty meaty though) and my enchilada was very good as well.  Though I have almost decided that I am not a mexican food fan anymore-don't get me wrong, I love some chips and salsa or our chicken enchiladas, but real mexican food just doesn't do it for me.  
We devoured every tortilla that they gave to us and the kids were pretty hungry since they pretty much cleaned their plates.  I guess that the 1/4th of a churro that we fed them for lunch didn't quite do the trick.  After eating, we walked around a bit more and let Anderson relieved himself in the middle of Old Town before loading up.  Actually, we were by the van and he was pretty well hidden-so nice to have boys that can do that (now just hoping he never does that at church on the playground!)
I packed a brand new can of formula for Keaton and that child has almost finished it off.  I do have some back up in the diaper bag and probably would have had enough to get home but it would have been very, very close and pretty risky so we stopped and bought some on the way home tonight.  Drug store prices do no compare to Walmart prices at all-though I would pay a very large sum of money to not have a screaming, hungry baby on a plane tomorrow.  I would also pay a large sum on money not to be on a crazy turbulent flight like on our way here.  
Back at the hotel, Keaton was exhausted and fussed for a bit before we could get her to take her milk and go to sleep.  And the big kids sat and watched a movie while Robby worked up enough nerve to take them swimming.  Yep, it was probably in the 60s and they went swimming!  It was pretty cool out there for me in my short sleeve shirt and I wrapped up with a towel.  I sat by the pool and watched it-mainly Anderson was in the pool.  He doesn't like any thing hot and sure wasn't setting foot in that hot tub.  Him and Reagan did do a few races in the pool.  Graham would come and was barely tall enough to touch but I did think I was going to have to jump in once for him.  And when Campbell came to play on the steps, I considered taking off my shoes so they wouldn't be wet tomorrow if I had to jump in after her.  Thankfully, I didn't have to rescue her (or anyone else) and all was well.  Robby stayed in the hot tub with the hot tub swimmers.  The kids didn't complain too much about being cold but I know they were freezing-I was.  
A few years ago, we swam in our hotel in New Orleans and we were near the airport.  A plane flew over and it was low and loud.  It was low and loud enough that it send our kids diving into the pool and screaming.  Tonight, we are right near the airport but it wasn't a plane that caused the commotion.  It was a train-it's whistle blew and then that train flew by barely 20 feet away from the hot tub.  Everyone screamed and jumped and Campbell and Graham had their hands to their ears.  
We then came back in and everyone had baths before laying in the floor to watch a few more movies.  They did have a snack-cookies, milk, sips of my coke, an apple, cheerios, cinnamon toast crunch.  I guess swimming in the freezing cold  makes you hungry.  
Keaton snoozed on since her earlier bottle as is her pattern lately-the days are so busy that she sleeps all evening long. Graham was the first to fall asleep and then we finally had to make Campbell go to bed (she had busied herself this evening with pulling a suitcase around, typing on my computer and drinking/spilling my coke).  And after one last movie, Reagan and Anderson went to sleep-they decided that they wanted to sleep in different spots so Anderson is by the front door and Reagan is under the table.  Graham has woken up with a yucky tummy, done his bathroom business a few times now and is now taking a bath.  Here's to a restful hotel night!

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