Monday, August 3, 2015

Act 5; Scene 34: Thomas Turns 3...a Month Ago!!!

Sheesh. It gets a little crazy around here with two kids and a house to clean, not to mention two gardens and church callings and whatever else we decide to say yes to!

I blame that on why it's taken me so long to post about Tommy's birthday.

That, and Tommy's birthday was kind of like a saga this year--a caravan of events before and after the grand day.

Around here, 3 is the magic number. 3 and under is a free ticket to just about anywhere. But once they hit 3 years old...BAM! They need a ticket. 

So we decided to do as many things as we could BEFORE that magic day hit.

We started out with the Living Planet Aquarium.

He does love whales. And this one is a KILLER whale, so it's especially awesome.
checking out the sting rays and starfish

I guess these high rope bridges are the newest thing!

He was too nervous to try to touch them

The jungle had a lot of cool birds

Giant river fish! (and giant bum, haha!)

Seriously, the river fish were HUGE

Sharks swimming above us!

Checking out some sharks
Do you see the sponsor of the shark teeth? That might be my favorite part
The Aquarium is really neat. And they even have a nice, large mother's room (my favorite amenity). The only problem was, Tommy is in such a hurry all the time. Half-way through he just wanted to run everywhere. He may have enjoyed running more than actually looking at the fish. And his favorite part was definitely the penguin roller coaster toy running on display at the gift shop.

You win some, you lose some, right?

The next Tuesday, the day before his birthday, Grandma McFarland and I took him to the Hogle Zoo.

The zoo just happens to have a "Zoorassic Park" display of life-like, noise-making, moving dinosaurs on display all over the place. Let's just say, the man-made dinos took the cake over the real-life, exotic zoo animals!

 Tommy had a fascinated-but-kind-of-scared approach to the dinosaurs. We kept trying to interest him in the monkeys, elephants, sea lion show, and he kept taking us back to the dinos!

But you have to admit, those dinos are pretty cool! Just imagine this T-Rex opening and closing its mouth while growling, and its eyeballs moving around while it's neck and arms move, too! It was so life-like! And hey, if there's one area where the animals are hiding or resting, no worries! There is a talking, moving dinosaur right next to it! No disappointment here! 
The polar bear doing laps
Riding the cheetah on the merry-go-round
We must have stopped by this stegosaurus at least a dozen times!

Can you see how this gorilla is sleeping? Hilarious!

Giant tortoise

Crocodiles--Tommy loved seeing these bad boys!

The lioness came right up to where we were at the glass!
My little dino explorer!

The giraffes have so much more room than they used to!

African Savannah
I have to say, the zoo is SO MUCH COOLER now than I remember it being the last time I went. The enclosures are bigger and laid out so nicely! There are zoo workers and volunteers at each place, telling you about the animal(s) and about that specific animal, and you can ask any question. There are tons and tons of things for kids to do, from sand boxes to play lands to the train to the merry-go-round to the awesome bird and sea lion/seal show--not to mention the actual animals which is pretty cool, too. I was so impressed with the zoo! Can't wait to go back!

After all of the partying and a trip to St. George planned for the next day, Tommy's actual birthday may have felt a little anti-climactic!

We of course opened presents in the morning before Robert left for work:

His 2-3 year "Tommy book"

And his very own swimming pool!
He was pretty stoked about the swimming pool. He played in it for the next four hours. (And about 1 of those hours he was playing BY HIMSELF. For an whole hour!)

That afternoon we had funfetti cupcakes. And I totally spaced on getting birthday candles....at least we had this one left over from my 23rd b-day!

Do you love how the candle is as big as the cupcake? And notice the dinosaur sprinkles

Later Uncle Luke brought over a present. Tommy loved the bag it came in. He just sat and looked at it for a while!

 A puppet AND a dinosaur. How did Luke know? Tommy LOVES it. 

The next day we headed down to St. George--kind of for Tommy's birthday. Thomas considered it his birthday trip. In fact, everything we did for about two weeks was "for me birthday!"
We had a lovely time over the holiday weekend in St. George. We went on a hike:

Our sleeping muffin. Or mushroom.
Scarlet resting her head against the bar of the backpack to sleep
We played with the dogs

This is more like tease the dogs. Poor Roy.
Went to a parade

We ate lots of yummy food

I think this one is a strawberry
 And did fireworks! 

Thomas kept warning Dad that he was going to get burned. I think I had him appropriately scared.

a little light for fireworks, but what do you do??
 All in all, a lovely, long, celebration of Tommy and our Country.

Let's do it again next year!

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