the houston zoo

After a long drive in the pouring rain and a flat tire (if you followed that hour on twitter, you remember how God provided like NUTS!), we arrived at Chris, Kelli and Caroline’s house damp and tired. I loved Kelli immediately–such a sweet, happy, beautiful, charming gal. I was a little curious about the red spots all over her feet, but we figured that one out later. The girls loved Kelli too. She was like “The Fun Aunt.” Wii-playing, tote-bag-painting, puzzle-doing, gift-bearing, grin-wearing Kelli.

She and Chris made us scrumptious fajitas for dinner. Then Miss Amanda drove across (over? under? through?) town to spend some girl time with us. What a doll! And bless her hubby, Curt, for keeping the kiddos and not minding her leaving when they were getting ready to go out of town the next morning. I loved meeting Amanda after reading her blog for so long. She’s everything you see on her blog–witty, candid, sweet, smart–and then some. You’re even more gorgeous in person, Amanda. And tall! I don’t know why I’m always surprised when my blog friends turn out to be tall.

We chatted and chatted. And laughed and laughed. Then Amanda went home, we put the girls to bed, and the four of us chatted and chatted and laughed some more.

Up early for the zoo. We told Chris and Kelli we completely understood if they wanted to skip out on the zoo since it was raining. They said no way. And we had the best day in the rain! Rainy days can be a bummer for my photographer, but we had so much fun. No crowds. $72 worth of free food. Are you kidding me, Houston Zoo?! You rock! And stuffed red pandas for each of our girls. Man alive.

We came back to their house after the zoo to change into dry clothes, do some laundry, and clean out our van. A rare afternoon of downtime. It was wonderful.

Kelli wrote a post about my girlies last week that melted my heart. And her timing was perfect, because I needed the reminder that day that they are indeed capable of behaving and not bickering. I’ll be printing it out and putting it on the bulletin board beside my desk.

Thanks, Chris, Kelli and darling little Caroline! We love you! Pleeeeeease visit us this summer if you go to Michigan!

A friendly little Wii competition.

Amanda, Kelli, Me. See how tall they are?? (I’m 5’9′ or 5’10”.)

My daughters were in HEAVEN. Bless you, Kelli!

Look at this doll baby! So gorgeous. And can you believe those eyes?

This really is the HOUSTON zoo. Really.

This pic reminds me that I haven’t fed a giraffe in ages. Withdrawal.

Pretty zoo. Pretty girls. 🙂

This little guy wasn’t very old. I still haven’t seen the baby elephant at the C-bus Zoo!

Aren’t they the most darling little family?

Meet Jonathan. Such a distinguished looking fellow.

The birds in Texas have no shame. And there was no one at the zoo to bother but us.

See, I told you we were at the Houston Zoo.

A few Un-Zoo-Related Housekeeping Notes: you have until noon to enter the give-away here. You can read about how to Save a Diaper, Save the World here. (Thanks so much for your support yesterday!!)

Special thanks to Brian Hill, Director of Public Affairs at the Houston Zoo. Your generosity blew us away! More pics and tales tomorrow! Just Sea World and 2 zoos to go! Happy Tuesday!

9 thoughts on “the houston zoo

  1. Stephanie

    I thought it was Josh in that first picture too!!! I stared at it FOREVER, figuring out where you were and how Josh could be there with you. He didn’t look quite as much like him in the other pictures, but still! (Josh is my and Marla’s brother, Kelli). 🙂

  2. Kelli

    Can I just say that I love that the BIRD picture turned out. We had such a great laugh remembering that.

    Thank you for your sweet words friend!

    And who is this Josh that my husband looks like? 🙂

  3. Heather

    Well we went to San Antonio and I did not see you there! ha! dern! (from a recent comment you left) THe zoo looks fun and we have not been there yet. Need to go on that! That pic of the giraffe and lion are amazing!! Fun times!!!

  4. Peter P

    Have you been keeping track of the value of all the free stuff given you by all these zoos? Tickets, food, stuffed toys.

    It’s amazing to me how well the zoos are looking after you!

  5. Chris Yoder

    Please tell me that the guy in picture #1, 9, and 11 isn’t Josh! Especially the first picture! I stared at it forever, trying to figure out how Josh could have been there!

  6. Erin

    What??? You haven’t seen the baby elephant yet?? He’s adorable…his mommy is too in the way she cares for him.

    I wish I could experience these zoos. I have a feeling your book is going to make people want to drive cross country to go to these zoos. Very cool

  7. Kaye

    Enjoyed seeing the Houston zoo through ‘your eyes’:)
    And loving to see all of these tall girls!!!!
    Blessings today and always,
    Kaye
    Matthew 21:22

  8. Amanda

    Well, if you had to see the zoo in the rain, at least it was free! I’m so glad our zoo was generous. I loved meeting y’all and am hoping it won’t be long before we cross paths again.

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