and this is Violet at the zoo about 13 months later:
I am left to conclude that babies really do grow up way too fast. So in honor of capturing the little moments while my children are at these precious little ages, here are way too many pictures of our trip to the zoo.
Preparing three kids under the age of 5 to go to the zoo is a task in and of itself. I've been anxiously awaiting the day when Violet's hair gets long enough for me to play with it, and during zoo prep, I decided that this was the day. After giggling over the cuteness of these pigtails for about ten minutes, one fell out and I was forced to admit that her hair isn't there, yet.
When we arrived, I asked my family for pictures to capture the excitement of the beginning of our adventure. Violet ignored me, but Shepherd (I love this kid) is always enthusiastic when the camera comes out.
Lydia pursed her lips together in defiance when I asked for a smile. That's Lydi.
And when I decided to join the picture, he pretended he didn't know me.
After the flamingos, alligators, and several small animals, we finally got to the part of the zoo are kids were eagerly anticipating: THE GOATS! Feeding goats is one of those things in life that is indisputably fun. Seriously, don't try to dispute me on that. Here is Shepherd having some indisputable fun.
Lydia was overwhelmed by the cuteness of these goats. In a voice made unnaturally high-pitched by the exuberance the goats incited in her, she said "Oh, baby goats! You are so very cute!!!"
Up to this point, Violet was pretty happy to hang out with the folks.
But then she decided she needed to see these goats for herself.
They brought her much joy and happiness, as they do to all human beings with hearts.
This is just a group shot because I love this group.
Eventually, Violet decided she needed to get in on the feeding. Unfortunately, she can not be trusted to not eat goat food, so we had to say no.
After the zoo, we went to the playground by the zoo. There was much sliding down slides...
...and of course, running up slides.
Finally, it was time for the train ride! BJ set with the older two behind me and Violet, so I immediately got out the camera and started snapping. This is the "smile" Lydia gave me when I requested a smile. She's very natural about it all.
I then asked BJ to snap a few of me a Violet.
Shepherd photo bombed. Big surprise there.
And then a woman several rows behind (a woman who would probably be a dear friend if we ever lived in the same town) told her husband to "get up a go take a picture of that family." I was grateful. And thus ended our trip to the zoo.