The kids and I met my friends Val, Erika and their kiddos for a playdate this week at Como Zoo. I can't say I remember visiting Como Zoo any time other than summer and let me just say -- IT. WAS. AWESOME. We practically had the place to ourselves, which meant the kids could get out of their strollers and run wild like animals.
See Tory practicing to be a monkey?
When we go to the zoo in the summer, it's constant kid pandemonium with big groups of day care tours and other families visiting the zoo. There's never time to do anything but see the animals, and I'm usually exhausted by the end after being on high parenting alert the whole time. On this day, we were able to meander along the path and let the kids play and climb all over the rocks and structures. We could stand and watch the animals for as long as we liked without worrying about blocking other people's view.
It was also really fun to see (Val's kids) Kasen, Linden and Tory have such a ball together. These three have known each other their entire lives, but this was the first time I've seen them truly pick up like old friends and play together. One more cool thing about having "big kids" -- their ability to develop real-life friendships with others.
What an unexpectedly relaxing and fun fall day at the zoo with friends!