Wednesday, June 24, 2009

much-needed vacation

Presque Isle, Erie, PA

The Erie Zoo & Botanical Garden

This zoo felt like a storybook zoo. It was somewhat tucked away in a neighborhood. The entrance was nice, not extravagant or flashy, parking was free in a little lot across the street, and it just gave off a welcoming, old-timey vibe. I liked it! We were mesmerized by the giraffes for some time.

I guess you'd call this male bonding. A lesson in skipping stones.
I love J's posture in the next image. I felt like I captured his energy--and a special moment, flinging all his hopes and joys into the water like wishes.

Anybody know the significance of all the frog and fish statues in Erie? I didn't get around to asking about them or trying to look them up. They were everywhere. This one has been decoupaged with pages and covers from old books. He sat outside the library/Erie Maritime Museum.

Parts of Erie have an older feel. We hit this light a lot, and I really just liked looking at the one single traffic light and the buildings around.

You've got to look closely at this next image, of these amazing whirligig lighthouse displays at the Tom Ridge Environmental Center (The TREC). Although it's free like all state park nature centers, that term just doesn't cut in when describing this facility. It's not dark and dingy and full of taxidermied wildlife. It's a LEED building; it harnesses wind power; and there's an IMAX theatre inside that holds a 4-story Big Green Screen.
At the base of this lighthouse model was a wheel, and when turned, every whirligig in the display was set in motion. It was really impressive to see them all moving in sync, and they were very finely crafted and detailed whirligigs to start with. My grandfather used to make whirligigs, and recently he's started making a few more. I think one was of a man canoeing, and the other was the 'classic' Mallard. I hope to convince him to take a shot at making us one with that features J's favorite bird, the Downy Woodpecker!
Happy Summer, readers! Where are you vacationing to?


Cheryl said...

looks like such a great time! I especially love the pic of J throwing the stone in the water :) very sweet.

Jenni said...

That building looks and sounds amazing. Glad you had such a good time!

My husband and I are taking a trip to Canada for a week. Ah. Looking forward to it.

Jenni said...

By the way, I love the new look of your blog :)