Friday, April 10, 2009

Insect Encounter at Callaway Gardens

We grabbed a quick bite to eat after our Cockatoo Encounter, and then it was back to the Butterfly Center for the Insect Encounter. Connor has said he wants to be an entomologist when he grows up, so this was right up his alley. Noelle was not at all scared of all the critters, and held her little hands out to hold every one after Connor. The super nice lady who ran this event was so good with kids (and with bugs), and just rattled off tons of interesting facts.

This is a hissing cockroach, which really did hiss.
I was just hoping it wouldn't crawl up Connor's sleeve.

Noelle held it briefly before dropping it on the floor.
It was quickly recovered and seemed not to mind the adventure.

This was a Giant Brazilian Cockroach, and since it had wings and could fly away, the lady kept a firm hold on it while Connor held it.
These emit a smell, kind of like chili pepper and garlic; quite tasty if you close your eyes and forget your smelling a giant flying cockroach!

This frog would be poisonous except for the fact that it is only fed crickets.
The lady told us "you are what you eat" and the reason the frog is normally poisonous in its natural habitat is because of its diet!
I've actually been thinking about this in relation to my diet...

I would say that I cannot remember what this is, but I don't think I ever knew what it was called. I don't think it's a scorpion, although its tail curls up like it. Noelle did not hold this one.

We don't have any photos of the butterflies, but you can see the Butterfly Center in the background of this picture. It was full of beautiful flowering plants and hundred of amazing butterflies.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Cockatoo Encounter at Callaway Gardens

They call this event the "Parrot Encounter" at Callaway Gardens, but the bird was actually a cockatoo. It was the sweetest bird I've ever been around, and very pretty. It was so tame that it would step over onto our arms very easily, liked being petted, and especially loved being called a pretty girl.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Birds of Prey Show at Callaway Gardens

One of the first things we did at Callaway Gardens was attend the Birds of Prey Show. We were a little late, but still got to see a red tailed falcon and two different owls. They would perch in front of us, then on cue fly to a perch behind us. It was cool to see the owls turn their heads so far around, and to experience how silently they fly.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Spring Break at Callaway Gardens

A couple of weeks ago during our kids' Spring Break, we went to Pine Mountain, GA, to Callaway Gardens (and then to the to nearby Wild Animal Safari!). We had a great time, and were impressed with how many things they had for kids. We want to go back when it is a bit warmer, and rent their bikes, because there are so many beautiful bike trails throughout the gardens. Here are a few pictures we took:

Monday, January 26, 2009

Thanksgiving 2008

We had a very special Thanksgiving in 2008, because we were able to celebrate it with so much of our family. All the "local" family was there, of course. My brother & his 4 kids were able to drive up from Atlanta. Trevor was home from college, and best of all my grandmother was able to join us. (Trevor drove all the way to Memphis to get her.) My mom cooked - so much that no one could even sample everything she made.

Of course we missed my dad, and there were some sad moments, like when my mom said that the corn we were eating was planted and harvested by him. I think we're just barely starting to reach the point where we can talk about him without having to immediately stop because we get too emotional. For me, thinking about the corn brought back memories of my dad being so happy to pick & shuck corn - who is happy about that? He would get home from work, change, and ask who wanted to join him picking corn? I remember taking Connor, when he couldn't even walk, and he sat in the grass and tried to eat the raw corn that we had just picked & shucked.

That is a trait I wish I had more of - doing what needs to be done with enthusiasm and happiness. My dad did that. I want to do a better job of it.

Here are a few pictures from the day:

This is Noelle & Hannah (the two youngest cousins) collaborating on their Scrabble game. We think they are the smartest (and cutest) in the family.

It wouldn't be a trip to Nana's house without jumping on the trampoline. Noelle loves to jump!

And here we all are. I hope I have a lot of my grandmother's genes, because doesn't she look fantastic for being one week shy of 90 years old???

Monday, January 19, 2009

Fall Creek Falls 2008

In October of 2008, we went hiking at Fall Creek Falls. It was beautiful, and we hope to go back as soon as the weather warms up. Here are a few photos of the day: