We Almost Went to the Zoo…but Had Lots of Fun Anyway

WARNING: Picture heavy. We’re on vacay and I tend to take lots of pictures anyway.

This morning we woke up having every intention of going to the zoo. Someone forgot to tell Colorado Springs that it’s late spring (might as well be summer), because it was more like fall/winter on the drive up the mountain. The rain was supposed to commence later in the day giving us enough time to feed the giraffes and clean the spit off our hands. We at least got to spot the giraffes (haha) as we circled the parking lot, making the decision that meandering through outdoor exhibits in the rain when it’s 57 degrees isn’t a good idea…for the chillins…or for Mommy…or for Nonna. Du and Reagan played tough guys saying that they weren’t going to melt and neither were the giraffes so lets go see them already. We all know they would have been miserable though. Reagan really would have hated the cold rain (while demanding to try to share Ashlyn’s stroller and blanket) and Du really would have hated listen to me bitch and moan lightly complain about how I’m cold natured and would soon develop pneumonia and he’d have to make the move south all by himself.


So, we took that opportunity to head to the US Olympic Training Center.

I think the guy who gave us the tour said there are three training centers in the country and one of them is here in the Springs. Of course, when you enter the visitor’s center, you’re ushered directly into the gift shop. They’re really pushing this 2008 Olympics in China thing.

 (They’re luring in the kids)

I had forgotten the Olympics were coming up this summer. And honestly, I’m boycotting them because I don’t care to give China any more props or credit than they deserve, which, in my opinion, is about none. How about give your citizens the freedom of religion? How about stop putting poison in all of our products from kids’ toys to dog food to medicine? How about give more worth to a woman so then maybe there wouldn’t be so many unwanted girl babies. Then maybe I’ll support you. I support you enough by buying all your  crap stuff that you shove down our throats (which is probably poisoned) because you make it at the lowest possible price…. Whoa, did I just write all that? Can you tell that’s been weighing on me some lately? Just some.


We start the tour, which is an inspirational couple of videos about the Olympics and the driving spirit that all the athletes have. It’s amazing how much dedication these people give to their sport…their lives really. After the video in the nice, dark, warm auditorium we’re ushered outside to the cold, somewhat wet outside. The Training Center used to be an Air Force Base (hooah!) and you can so tell that. They’ve definitely spruced it up for the athletes. The best bit of info I got all day, I think, was that the Training Center is not supported with government money. What? You mean a great program that can actually stand on its own with privately donated money? You bet. It can happen folks. We got to see the areas where the gymnasts, wrestlers, weight lifters, shooters (I think it’s awesome that shooting is an Olympic sport), swimmers (what am I forgetting?) get to train. The girl gymnasts don’t train here because the minimum age of residency here is 15 and we all know that to be a great girl gymnast you have to be prepubescent and stunt your growth for life. Wow, I’m on a roll tonight. Where’s my happy pill? To be able to actually reside at the Training Center you have to be in the top 5 to 10% of your sport. Talk about competitive.

  (we would not be good bobsledders…notice the horrible ducking stance)

We left the Training Center and went to lunch at Meadow Muffins. Yummy, greasy food. What could be better? I hope there’s a hospital or at least some kind of clinic nearby. It’s not a four star establishment so Ashlyn displayed perfect behavior. I dared Du’s parents to take us to the Broadmoor. We’d see how perfect that angel would act in the place where President Bush just stayed before he bid the latest batch of Air Force Cadets farewell.  

  (Ashlyn acting all perfect)

Du’s parents were angels and took the girls home so Du and I could have some couple time. Forget Date Night, we had a whole Date Afternoon! And where did we go but to the mall. Does he know how to please me or what? Browsing books while sipping an iced chai latte is about the greatest thing. We also got to see the latest Indiana Jones movie. Can I just say that I called the spaceship? I so did know that it would show up. It wasn’t as cheesy as I was afraid though. Overall a great Indie movie. Couple of age jokes. I laughed at each one. What else? Oh! I found a mug for an upcoming project. The main feature this mug had to have was that it not be made in China (reference above). This one is cute and made in Portugal.


Ok, I can hear some of you snoring now. I’ll have to be brief about what we’ve been doing the last couple of days. Lets just say it involves crafts and highlights. Pictures of both will be coming soon. Well, you can see the highlights in the pic at the top. Oh! And we went bowling. I must mention that during the second game there were four frames, count them, four, where yours truly was in the lead. The others must have been bowling with their eyes shut.

Ashlyn wanted to bowl too so she took a couple of toys and threw them at the bowling lane.

Published by NotSoSAHM

I'm a photographer and homeschooler Dream = travel blogger. We move around every couple of years. That's fine, I love seeing different parts of our great country and the world. Great things: Jesus, traveling, photography, eating, sewing, scrapbooking, reading, shopping...not necessarily in that order.

10 thoughts on “We Almost Went to the Zoo…but Had Lots of Fun Anyway

  1. Hey, thanks for the visual tour! I felt like I had a brief vacation. 🙂

    Nice highlights. Keep havin’ fun and takin’ pics. You’ll always be grateful for both.

  2. food for thought about china. i hate when people don’t act right, and in many ways, it would appear that they don’t. but anyway, try to have fun on your vacay and worry about china when you get home. p.s. i love the picture of you and a and the shameless merchandising. great pic of you!

  3. I’m finally making Du take more pictures of me and the kids…you know so I can actually be in the scrapbook some. “Mom, where are you? Were you here during this part of our lives? What did you look like?”

  4. How did I miss this one? Forgive…

    But your thoughts on China? Yeah…GOOD stuff. GOOD GOOD stuff. And so true.

    Now I’m off to Walmart to buy stuff for VBS. And I hate this, but where else am I gonna go?

  5. From the Constitution of the people’s republic of China (Adopted December 4th, 1982):

    Article 36. Citizens of the People’s Republic of China enjoy freedom of religious belief. No state organ, public organization or individual may compel citizens to believe in, or not to believe in, any religion; nor may they discriminate against citizens who believe in, or do not believe in, any religion. The state protects normal religious activities. No one may make use of religion to engage in activities that disrupt public order, impair the health of citizens or interfere with the educational system of the state. Religious bodies and religious affairs are not subject to any foreign domination.

    Article 48. Women in the People’s Republic of China enjoy equal rights with men in all spheres of life, political, economic, cultural and social, and family life. The state protects the rights and interests of women, applies the principle of equal pay for equal work for men and women alike and trains and selects cadres from among women.

    —- It is written right in their constitution. If something was written in our constitution we would consider it a fact. The things you know about China are based upon the ignorant rumors you’ve heard… And they shove stuff down our throats. NO. US companies go into China to get things produced at low low prices so they can make greater profits. It’s US businesses that import from China. You don’t know what you are talking about. Kelly and Leigh Anne, way to reinforce the ignorance. Does anyone in the US actually know anything about China? They have more rights for women than we do.

  6. Mike, is that why missionaries that go to China have to do so in secrecy?

    Is that why about 70% of aborted fetuses are female?

    It is written in our constitution that we have the right to bear arms, but we still place a lot of controls over gun ownership. The premise may be “factual” because it is written in the constitution but it doesn’t become fact until it is practiced as such.

    I totally agree that US business go to China to get things produced more cheaply. That is a fact. It is also a fact that Chinese factories/plants have had some pretty serious mess ups lately which affect the health and safety of the consumer (lead paint in medicine, lead in toys, virus-infected digital picture frames). Is that the fault of the Chinese factory or the US company? My guess is the factory either by oversight or by desire to reduce their cost. Either way, the product comes from China and is hazardous.

    I’d like to know your background to understand why you feel the way you do and why you have taken this so personally. Until then, I know what I’m talking about just as much as you do.

  7. Apparently I’m a pro at reinforcing the ignorance.

    But your response, Vicki, was well-written. And correct.

    p.s. When someone mentions “women’s rights,” I just smile and think of Jesus. You know me, the anti-feminist. I’m thankful for a Savior who did more to liberate women than anyone before His time…or since. Cause that’s the kind of liberation I need, want, and get excited over. Amen.

  8. It is true that missionaries that go to China have to do it in secrecy, as they well should. Read article 36, it says you can’t harass people with your religion, especially when you aren’t from their country. I don’t even know how missionaries get Visas into China. I get awfully annoyed by people telling me I’m going to hell or trying to feed me Scientology. We’ve been known (in America) to persecute religions that we don’t believe all the times. Mormonism is something that far more Americans look on as crazy than as legitimate. In China you can practice your religion, but you’re not supposed to try and spread it the way most religions do, which is force it down your throat with scare tactics, talk of love when people are at low points in their life, and an offer of community when someone feels shunned.

    As for the 70% number… Where did you get that from? Here’s an excerpt from a well documented article:

    The sex ratio of fetuses based on a large representative sample is unavailable since the sex of the fetus is not recorded following most abortions in China. A project on surveillance for birth defects in eight provinces and cities by Beijing Medical University reported sex ratios of 94.6 and 96.8 indicating more females than males were aborted among 500 and 1226 aborted fetuses whose sex was identifiable in rural and urban areas respectively. The sex ratio for aborted fetuses whose sex was identifiable is significantly lower than the normal fetal sex ratio which exceeds 106. The plausible explanation is that some of the pregnant women underwent prenatal sex identification and sex-selective abortion.

    If you read that you will realize that approximently 50.5% of fetuses that are aborted are female. The article came from


    And if you read the whole article, you will realize that the Chinese government has worked to reduce any male bias in abortions. It is bad for society to have a gender bias in abortion, men will grow up and not be able to find partners. But the government also forces abortions, which is done because large scale effects can happen from a culture of individual decision making. If every family has 8 kids (and they likely would without incentive) without proper medical care, many of these people will die from curable diseases. And many others will live and become a burden to society, which will create a cycle of economic depression and further decreases in necessaries such as medical care. Also, if you read on, you will realize that there is a bias for men over women. This is not a bias on the government’s part. It’s a bias from a cultural standpoint largely because men take care of their parents into old age and the Chinese value passing on their name. China is trying to fight this bias.

    For gun ownership, I believe you will find that you are able to buy a gun right now if you tried. I think there should be very little gun control, but consider the case of a person who is angry one day because he found his wife cheating on him. He decides to walk into a store and buy a gun knowing exactly the person or people he is going to kill. Wouldn’t you like to give him a few days for a “background check” so he can consider this and calm down. And wouldn’t you like to have him registered to the gun so when he commits the crime he can be punished. These things are also good. The constitution is a guide, our reasonability as people has to be more important than blindly following a piece of paper.

    As for my background… I have no bias, only the opinion that anyone boycotting the Olympics is acting foolishly. The reason why I know what I’m talking about is because I’m informed and doing my research. I went to China this past year, but from being there I couldn’t come up with any of this. I presented you documentation and you spit out rumors at me.

  9. First, let’s talk about boycotting. The only thing foolish about my boycot was that I did not let the Olympic organization know about it. That’s what I should have done. A boycot is not foolish, it is effective to let a person/company/institution know that you view a practice of theirs as wrong. Was it foolish for the Colonials to boycot England? That’s what they did and it was effective. Gathering together voices to let an entity know you don’t agree with them is very effective. You are sentitive to this specific boycot because you have an interest in it. And that is understandable. I’d be ticked too if someone boycotted something I cared deeply about.

    As for the article. It was an MSNBC article. Definitely doesn’t seem as scholarly as yours, but where is the bias coming from in either. We can all find scholarly information out there to back whatever side we believe in. Look at global warming/climate change. There are scientists on both sides, credible scientists, who either believe it is human caused or it’s not human caused. So, take your pick, there will be information out there to suit whatever you believe.

    It is interesting that you will make excuses for, believe and accept the Chinese government in all their hypocracy but you won’t give the same time and acceptance to Christians. We are just people trying to fight the bias that others have on us, kinda like the Chinese government. No, we don’t always act perfectly or do the right things, but neither do the Chinese government and you’re bending over backwards to defend them. Our hearts are in the right place, like you say the Chinese government’s is, so why not give us the same credence?

    You are a lone voice with such a positive view of the Chinese government. If you want me to accept your singular viewpoint then please, take a minute to think about and maybe accept my viewpoint, a viewpoint held by millions around the world:
    There was a historical man named Jesus. He died for the sins of every single person on earth. There is a literal heaven and a literal hell. The fact is, and I’m not trying to be threatening here, it’s just a fact, the only way to have eternal life is to believe that Jesus did die for your sins and to accept Him as Lord and Savior of your life. That’s not a threat it’s just the truth. Many people find it threatening because they don’t want to change their lifestyle or they don’t even believe in God at all. It’s not threatening though because what can I do? Nothing. I can’t force you to believe or even force you to go to hell if you don’t. I am not a threat, and no other Christian acting properly is either. My message might seem threatening, but that’s because you’re choosing to see it that way.

    The idea that most Christians are threatening is false anyway. Unfortunately, there is such an apathy within the church nowdays that most Christians wouldn’t even argue with you about Christianity or eternal life or any other salvation issue. They simply don’t care enough. That’s a travesty. I would love to see us all so on fire for Christ that we would be excited to spread the Word and the love of Christ. Any Christian you meet, that is really walking with Jesus, is loving and not threatening. The views you have are incorrect and come from a false understanding…the same you say about me and my views of the Chinese government.

    So, I’m not going to argue about China anymore, but if you’d like to continue the discusion on religion and Christianity and eternal life I’d be more than happy to. That’s what matters in the end anyway.

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