Posted by: thequaches | November 11, 2009

If we could talk to the animals…

we’d be in a heap of trouble because I wouldn’t know what to say!

We trekked over to Oakland today, even though I was still feeling a bit tired.  But I find that if I stay cooped up at home, the children tend to turn on each other.  This then drives me crazy and I turn into a mean mom yelling all day for some peace and quiet.  SO, I sucked it up, packed lunch, and packed them into the car by 10 AM and drove to Oakland.  It was a pleasant drive.  They wrote in their notebooks, colored, played games with one another and the next thing we all knew, we had arrived!  (Just a side note:  on the way there, we also sang some songs.  We were listening to a more modern Sesame Street CD and Steven Tyler sings his version of “I Love Trash” and Matthew can’t get enough of it!  He starts banging his head, pretending to play the guitar, and he screams the words just like any heavy medal singer would.  It’s quite amusing to watch…and also to catch a few glances at Ethan who wants to mimic but isn’t quite sure what Matthew is doing.  I did explain heavy music to them… might have to whip out a few more samples this week.  Any suggestions?)

And so begins our adventures at the Oakland Zoo.

We always start with the flamingos because they are right by the entrance:




The sun bear — one of our favorite exhibits:  There are 2 bears here, Ting Ting and Bulan.  This is Ting Ting we are admiring.  She seems to be napping…  Bulan was…. waaaaaay up in the eucalyptus tree!


She decided to look up as if to greet us — what a nice treat!


The siamang was pulling out his fancy tricks for us today!  He was swinging from all the ropes but I couldn’t get the camera out in time.  He was pretty fast!  This one that I was able to capture shows him swinging from this rope and then climbing up the pole to get to that big water bottle… inside are treats!  The children decided he was eating apples and bananas from in there… hmmm…


Not the best photos, but Ethan will be talking about this exhibit for days!  He LOVES the chimpanzees.  He did not want to leave and I had to convince him that it was just time to go so they could get some rest from us staring at them!


He followed this chimpanzee all around the exhibit and was content to see what he would do next — swing up, swing down, get a snack, chase another chimpanzee, play a game in the tube, and eventually decided to sit in a hammock in the corner… At this point, Ethan told me to “shh… monkey sleeping…”  I correct him, but he still calls them monkeys!  Every now and then, he will say chimpanzee.


Then they went off to play for a minute:

I love this tomato frog!  Its colors are amazingly bright!  I wonder if that defines how poisonous they are…


She wanted to jump off… so I said, why not, go for it!  We don’t jump on our furnitures at home… so they jump off other things!  🙂



Then off to see some lizards, frogs, snakes, and box turtles….

The black tree monitor was a bit friendly today.  It was walking back and forth right by the display window.  Ethan couldn’t help but follow it back and forth.  At one point he and another little girl, about the same age, would scream every time the monitor turned to look at them.  Although it was funny, we had to tell them to stop because this exhibit is a quiet area exhibit!  😉


The 2 boa constrictors:


The fruit bats… For some reason they were in this area, rather than the more open exhibit… not sure why.  We couldn’t find a keeper in this area to ask questions.


This play area was right outside the tarantula, walking sticks, and ant exhibit.  They played for a bit.  After this and the exhibit, we sat and had lunch.  Matthew and I had PBJ, while Morgan had PBN (Nutella).  Ethan was content to have some salami slices, some string cheese, crackers, and seaweed.


It’s the sea otter exhibit.. can you see it?  (Left hand side)


Creepy isn’t it???  I just HAD to take the photo!


Ahhhhhh, the life of an alpha male baboon — being groomed by his dear mate!


This warthog was digging up something big I tell ya — dirt flying everywhere!


How could I not capture this — a mommy and baby… so adorable!


Thank goodness we have a good lens to zoom in… he was a bit far from us (the way I like it).


Juice and fruit break…  We always find ourselves having a snack on these benches each time we come here.  When we arrive, the elephants are normally away and their exhibit is being cleaned up.  Their lunches are brought out and scattered everywhere for them to enjoy… So, we sit, enjoy oue juices and wait…


and have a fruit or two.. and wait….


“Mommy, elephant coming!!!”


And stayed for awhile watching them crush those leaves and branches and shove them into their mouths…  They are fascinating creatures.  I could sit for a long time and watch them… but alas, we must finish the rest of our tour and go home before traffic gets out of control!


We finish our tour with the meerkats (Quach3 favorite), hyenas, and tigers.  It was a fun filled day and I am so glad we got out of the house!  They had fun…tomorrow I will rest… at Jim and Clare’s!  We are headed over for lunch.  Maybe I can squeeze in a nap… my headaches are back…



  1. I have plenty of heavy metal music to share with Matthew. May I suggest the Metallica’s S&M album? (that’s short for San Francisco Symphony Orchestra & Metallica).

    • thanks Ed.. will look into it for Matthew’s sake! 🙂

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