The Zoo - Do Feed The Animals

31 July 2013

With the big flood in Calgary last month and it's devastating effect on the Calgary Zoo, I thought I'd have to put my zoo summer plans on the back-burner  Then London happened

Darling Penguins

My SIL and I decided to pack our 5 kids and spend a day in the London zoo. It was hot and sweltering and between us, we probably lost 5lbs worth of water-weight and I gained a few nuggets to add to my Twin Parenting 101 Handbook on the topic of visiting the zoo with toddlers

  1. Numbers: Have a nice kid-to-adult ratio. 2 women + 5 kids just about worked. Any more and we'd probably have lost a kid
  2. Corral: There should be a means of corralling ALL kids under 4 - either a backpack harness or a stroller. We opted for strollers for the girls and their 3 year old cousin. The older boys could walk. TIP: Unless you have super-strong shoulder muscles, do not do this with a wagon. I tried the 50+lbs of children in a wagon dance and it was not a pretty experience. 
  3. Conveyance: To drive or not to drive? Depends on the size of the group and how much the zoo charges for parking (some charges are outrageous) vs the cost of a taxi
  4. $$$$: Y'all know I'm all about saving the Benjamins. DO NOT buy tickets at the gate. Check the zoo website for ticket deals and discounts and buy in advance. Just doing this step saved us $70 in admission costs and also meant we could bypass the ticket line-up
  5. Feed: Don't feed the animals. Do feed the kids every 45 minutes. The hungry kid-angry kid formula holds true for the zoo as well. Plan on a bag filled with favorite snacks plus at least a bottle of water per person. TIP: If you are the designated snack packer do confirm what ALL the kids like to eat. I packed a bag filled with all of the girls' favorites assuming their cousins would like the same foods. I was wrong!
Cousins enjoying the water thingie by the bird place
How did it go? The kids had too much fun.The girls are now at the age where they recognize a lot of animals and can actually be excited to see them. 

I'm making good progress with this summer list thingie. How about yourself? One month of summer's already gone!

The list!
  • Visit the Calgary zoo Went to the London Zoo instead
  • Find ducks to feed in Calgary
  • Visit Spruce Meadows and look at horses - Saw horses at the Calgary Stampede
  • Have weekly after-work/school dates with the girls - Ongoing
  • Go to Calgary Stampede grounds - Watched the chuck wagon races
  • Visit a water-park type place (anywhere the girls can wear swimsuits and have a splash)
  • Go to the top of the Calgary Tower
  • Watch a live show with the girls - Does the zoo penguin show count?
  • Have family outdoor photo shoot 
  • Have a barbecue on our patio
  • Go on a family roadtrip and vacation 
  • Visit or have a playdate with someone new - Do cousins we've never met before count?
  • Attend cycling classes and ride bicycles outside
  • Go for gym or dance class for tots
  • Eat ALL the veggies we get from our CSA - Not doing too shabby so far

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