Friday, November 8, 2013

Zoo Membership

For some time now I've been wanting a membership or annual pass to somewhere.  It's funny how I never in my life thought of such a thing, but now that I'm a mom, especially a stay at home homeschooling mom, I want to be able to just go & not have to worry about having enough money to go.  And I want to go frequently.  I want to know that the costs are covered & we can just up & go & enjoy ourselves.  Also, there's the advantage of not having to feel the need to stay all day long & "get your money's worth".  Lots of shorter trips are a better thing with a young child.

The big issue has been on WHERE to do this.  I really prefer the idea of a zoo as opposed to an amusement park.  Amusement parks are fun, but for somewhere to go frequently I prefer the quaintness of a zoo.  Amusement parks are flashy with lots of stuff they want your kids to beg you to buy, etc.  At the zoo you can simply appreciate nature & God's creation.

After a lot of deliberating I had set my hopes on the San Diego Zoo.  It's closer to me than the LA Zoo.  Plus an annual pass to the SD Zoo would also work at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park.  And the Safari Park is actually about a half hour closer to me than the zoo itself is.  So I knew I'd probably be spending more time at the Safari Park rather than the zoo.

I have taken Lil J to several very small "zoos".  There's one in San Dimas, it's free actually.  And there's the O.C. Zoo, which is very small & very cheap to get in.  Lately Lil J has been begging to go to the zoo.  So on Thursday of this week I took Lil J to the Santa Ana Zoo.  I had never been there before.  Anytime I hear mention of it people always add "it's sooo small".  But we've never been to this one so I decided to go check it out.  (We did take him to the SD Zoo about 2 years ago, but only that one time & I did take him to the LA Zoo recently with my sister in law)

It is small, although larger than the one in San Dimas & the OC Zoo, but it's VERY nice.  And it's so close to home for me, no hour & a half drive.  And the best part of all?  Lil J had a blast, he's begging to go back again!!  So I discussed it with hubby & decided to do a membership here & later on, when he's a little older, we can do a bigger zoo membership, when he's bored with this one.

So I am happy to say we are members of the Santa Ana Zoo.  This also gets us free admission & discounted admission to a lot of other zoos, including the LA Zoo & the Big Bear Zoo (I've been there, but long ago, before I was a mom).  So possibly while travelling in the RV we can visit some other zoos.  All in all I am thrilled & can't wait to go again, in the next few days I'm sure.  I'm hoping the passes arrive by then.....if not maybe my receipt will work??  I think I'll email & ask about that......  (I did email & they responded promptly that that will work as long as I have my photo ID as well)

In addition to animals, they also have a small train ride & a carousel.  I knew Lil J would want to go on the train, but wasn't sure about the carousel.  I thought he might not want to go.  Or if he did go that he would cry.  I was soooo happy to see that he wanted to go & he didn't cry.  He had a blast & can't wait to do it again!!

This eagle is HUGE; I don't know that I've ever seen a bald eagle up close like this before.  This one is injured & can no longer fly, but he's beautiful nonetheless.

I wish my kid liked hats, but he doesn't.  I wanted to buy him this conductor hat, but I know he'll never wear it, so I didn't.  I did, however, buy him the binoculars.  His cousin has binoculars & ever since he saw them at his cousin's house I've never heard the end of how much he needs a pair of binoculars like his cousin, LOL!!  

They had a little playground that he really loved as well.

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