Camp Animals

Just got back from family camp. Here are the animals I met!IMG_459548383Trail ride with Patch.

IMG_459609343I do love me some goats. We’ve got Pepper and Peanut here. They were great.

IMG_459615702That’s Peanut falling asleep on my arm (please excuse the poop. Pretend they’re chocolate chips.) Poor Peanut couldn’t ever seem to find a comfy position on that picnic table. Unfortunately I couldn’t provide an arm-pillow all day.

IMG_459522651The camp’s nature center had a fawn. A FAWN. It had been found caught in a fence (no mom around), so it was a little beat up. When I visited, it was very hungry (I got there early in the morning, before feeding time), so I couldn’t get a good picture because it was just shifting around trying to find the food that surely I must have with me somewhere. Fawn licks are very sweet.

IMG_459553000Right here is a baby guinea pig. Look how little!

IMG_459554226Baby snake!

IMG_459554242The snake would not stop moving.

I also got to hold two love birds and a chinchilla (which is like holding a cloud). Also, they had a baby chinchilla, which is Da Cutest Thing.

 

Back to Life, Back to Reality

Over the last two weeks, I’ve been on break from work, so I’ve been busy doing lots of fun things! Much of my family was away visiting other family members, so my dad and I decided to have a staycation (I hate that word, but that’s what it was)! Our goal was to find activities that would be as close to travelling to a warm climate as possible.

On Christmas Day, we got brunch and then visited the Como Zoo Conservatory, because it is a) warm and humid, and b) open on Christmas. We walked around, learning about new plants for a while, and then took a nap on a bench in front of a fountain.

IMG_441228847Practically a tropical vacation.

Then we shared Christmas evening with family.

By the way, this is what Christmas Day looked like at my house:

IMG_441052506People complained that we didn’t have a white Christmas, but screw you! This was fantastic!!!!! I wish every year was a green Christmas. I’m the worst Minnesotan ever…

Anyway, the next day, we got brunch again (at Pannekoeken, which is the best), browsed a used book store (my dad’s favorite thing to do), went to a matinee movie, went back to my parents’ house, cranked up the heat in the living room (to 70!), and had pizza and root beer floats while watching Netflix.

IMG_441340914Over the weekend, we had lunch at Cracker Barrel (my favorite restaurant), where there was already a Valentine’s Day display (way too soon), and yet they were still playing Christmas music. One holiday at a time, if you please.

IMG_441484552Then we stayed one night in a hotel where my cousin works, and we visited the thrift store across the street (where there was a dog I got to pet, yay!)…

IMG_441491031…and spent 3 hours in the pool area, dipping in and out of the hot tub as needed. Here we are on the first step, unable to go in further because our icicle feet were not acclimated yet.

IMG_441493025The next day, we joined up with a bunch of family and visited the MN Zoo.

IMG_441561800For New Years Eve, I had a couple of friends over, and we had dinner and played games.

IMG_441765132It was a lot of fun. At 11:30, we turned on a countdown show, and then went back to playing a game, so we didn’t realize it was almost midnight until 11:58. We wanted to have a celebratory drink at midnight, so we all leapt up, grabbing glasses and a bottle, and pouring as quickly as we could. We were laughing and pouring when I looked over at the tv and noticed that the ball had already dropped, and I said, “Oh no! It happened!!!” and we all laughed that that was the first thing said in the new year. 🙂

During the break I also spent time with other friends, got to see a play, spent a lot of cuddle time with Jane, and slept in a lot!

Tomorrow my break ends, and I return to my school. It’ll be tough losing the freedom that I’ve enjoyed over the break, but I’m looking forward to seeing everyone and getting back into my routine. Happy New Year everyone!

Alex Goes to the Fair

We go every year at least once, and we do a lot of stuff. This trip was kind of a mini version (no horticulture, no international bazaar, no crafts, etc.), but I’m glad I got to go with my whole fam.

Photo (36) - CopyThe first thing I ate at the fair was (part of) this ice cream sundae in a plastic boat. It was obtained in the new West End section, probably at the totally awesome 1950s diner-looking creamery place. I didn’t know, and didn’t care because there was an ice cream sundae available to me. I don’t ask questions.

Photo (35) - CopyWe trucked it to the Miracle of Birth barn to meet up with the rest of the family. Miracle of Birth barn = BABIIIIEEEEES.

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BABIIIEEEES!!!! BABIES! AHHH!!!

I could have eaten this little guy in one bite. One bite.

Photo (47)Next, we did our big food haul.

Photo (34) - CopyThe cheese curds went too fast. (I blame myself.)

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Photo (42)We took in some sights.

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Photo (43)We rested our tootsies outside the green living building and watched some bees.

Photo (44)I couldn’t not get an apple dumpling.

Photo (45)And then my nephew did some Zumba.

Photo (46)And we called it a day! Like a bite-size trip to the fair.

Also, don’t know if you’re aware of this, but there are a lot of people at the fair.

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I'm Not a Crazy Cat Lady, You Gotta Believe Me

I only have 1 cat, I do not dress her up in human clothes, and I only anthropomorphize her sometimes. Only sometimes.

But I did go to the Walker’s Catvid Festival.

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This event is not really for people to watch Cat Videos (because do you see that tiny screen up there? yeah…it would be a much better idea to youtube these things in the comfort of your own home). This event is for nutty cat lovers to gather together with all of the other nutty cat lovers (and…just like our feline friends…demonstrate an appropriate level of respect for one another’s personal space by making as little actual contact with each other as possible).

On my walk back to my car, I noticed this little sweetie pie hopping down from his front porch, so I greeted him, and we cuddled for a while:

Photo (27) - CopyThen as I continued down the sidewalk, he followed me down the block until I crossed an intersection.

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What a little sweetie.

Also! I encountered this little dude as I headed into work this morning.

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Family Camping

This past weekend, I went camping with a bunch of my extended family. Wellll….when I say camping, I mean this kind of thing:

Photo (43)It’s an actual camp, like that kids go to in the summer. We all grew up going to it, and they have these family weekend things that we do once in a while. It’s as close to real camping as this girl gets.

So guess what I did first. Find all the animals!!! The camp has a little nature center where they have various animals that you can hang out with.

Photo (41)When I was a kid camper, I would basically spend all of my time there. One year, they had like 6 baby goats. They were tiny and adorable and soooo friendly. They would all just come up to me and head-butt my legs and then play king of the hay bale with each other. They were the best! They also had a litter of golden retriever puppies once. So much fun!

This year they basically just had chickens, rabbits, and two goats that were really cute but weren’t as friendly as my old baby goat pals. They pretty much just wanted me to feed them weeds and then get the heck out of their lives.

Photo (50)I did get to go on a horse ride.

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Those velvet noses!

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Photo (45)My horse, French Fry, was a bit of a princess. She wanted to eat at all times (which of course, you’re not supposed to let them do). And she tried to trick me into letting her by acting like she was going to scratch her leg, but then surreptitiously grabbing a mouthful of greens. The little sneak. This picture is blurry because I had to take it very quickly before she tried to grab more food.

Then we hung out by the beach.

Photo (48)And watched people climb stuff. Like crates!

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This is the camp director.

Then the whole fam got together for a raucous late night Bible Trivia sesh!

Photo (32) - CopyIt was WILD! Really, though, it was probably my favorite part of the weekend.

We left the next day, but we had just enough time for a little relaxation in the woods overlooking the lake.

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Zoo Escape

In addition to Como Zoo and the Sculpture Garden Conservatory, the Minnesota Zoo is a nice place to escape from the harsh winter weather. It was my nephew, Soren’s first time at a zoo!

Photo (18) - CopyI think this handsome little fish wanted to be my best friend:

Photo (19) - CopyThe bird show was really fun. I always enjoy talking parrots (they named their African Grey “Alex”, which I thought was a sweet tribute) and owls that swoop over the audience.

Photo (20) - CopySoren, having fun watching some monkeys:

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I wanna know what kind of shampoo these dudes use on those tails.

They have this cool thing at the aquarium, where a diver is hooked up to a microphone device and can speak with the audience while under the water. People could ask him questions about a fish or whatever, and he could walk over to it and talk about it.

Photo (23) - CopyThe poor wolverine was a little wound up or something, he kept pacing back and forth on this window.

Photo (25)The Lynx were so cuuuute. They were playing with each other, and making fun facial expressions at us (either vocalizing or sniffing-cats smell better when their mouths are open).

Photo (26)It was fun and exhausting.

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