Thursday, June 4, 2015

Zoo Beginnings

Hello adventurers!

The Flegal's summer started off with cloudy skies and rain. As a result of the dreary weather, we ended up postponing our Memorial day weekend tirp to Bubba's cabin. It was disappointing but the forecast made the choice for us. We would later learn that it snowed where we had been planning to be; so I think it's fair to say we were right in holding off. 

Fortunately, we were able to find some real bright spots that first weekend of "summer" despite the weather. Looking forward to having a Saturday morning free of soccer commitments, Andrew and I thought it would be a good opportunity to visit our friend Patti who was recovering from neck surgery. 
She has been a friend of ours for a couple of years now. It's been a blessing to watch this relationship with her grow. This friendship brings out a very compassionate side in our children. Watching them love on her without hesitation, stirs a special type of joy in my overly sentimental, yet somewhat deflated (thanks for that kids!), chest. In turn, Patti always has a stash of goodies: books to read, decorations for their bedrooms, activity books, holiday gifts, etc. that she selects just for them. Children have an ability to brighten and uplift those who are poor in spirit in a way that others can't. The blessings go both ways as our morning of bickering with one another shifted into a day of good feelings thanks to the visit we had with her.
The kids sang songs to her, crawled in her bed to give her hugs, ate her grapes and other uneaten lunch items (sorry Patti) and told her about their recent trip to Disneyland. Eliza left her with a darling bear that she recently completed in her sewing class. Patti was so delighted.

"I will sleep with this bear every night." She promised.
(Eliza's sewing teacher sent me this cute picture.
The teddy bear on the left is the she gave to Patti.) 

This experience reinforced what I have been taught about serving others. It is a sure path to experiencing real joy. It's true that we need to increase these opportunities in the lives of our kids as it puts the important things into perspective and hopefully makes a more lasting impact than all that's superficial and temporary. Because sadly, I am better at focusing on those things sometimes.

Near to the hospital where she was staying is Utah's Hogle Zoo. It's been a long time since we've had the chance to visit as a family so we decided to meet up with some of the Flegal crew for a fun (and wet!) afternoon visit. Forrest was THRILLED to ride that train. His reaction was my favorite part of the day.
Another favorite was watching Forrest interact with Uncle Mike who was in town visiting from Arizona. He had a yellow rain jacket that matched Forrest's. He was also Forrest's favorite person that day so it was pretty darn cute to watch the two of them stroll through the zoo together. Even better is the fact that Forrest calls him "Nanna" so all afternoon we would watch as he zoomed about, chasing after Mike screaming,

"Nanna, Nanna!!" Hopefully it made Nanna Teresa giggle.
All of the kids had a good time, but I have to say that Lottie was extra pleased to have James and Ellie there to pal around with. She's sure lucky to be surrounded by such cute cousins. 

The dinosaurs on display were very impressive and in certain ways outshine the ones at the Dinosaur Park. They stare creepily at the kids and give an occasional Dino Roooooaaaarrr, which is quite exciting. I hope they stick around for awhile as they add to the zoo experience. It would be a shame if they went "extinct" too soon (I apologize. I can't help myself).
Thank you Nanna Teresa for spoiling us with these visits to the zoo. We sure love and appreciate you and look forward to being able to make these memories with people we love.

1 comment:

*Jess* said...

Sounds like a good start to the Summer!