Sunday Bookends: Giraffes, lions and goats. Oh my.

Welcome to my weekly post where I recap my week by writing about what I’ve been reading, watching, writing, doing, and sometimes what I’ve been listening to.

Friday night I crawled into bed around 11:30. On one side of me was a 6-year old little girl with sun burnt cheeks and nose, clutching a stuffed baby giraffe and clearly asleep. Next to her was a friendly kitten who had already extracted a series of pets from me. In the space where my feet should have been was a Shetland sheepdog mix and the feet of the aforementioned child.

My arms and face, chest and back of my neck were hot to the touch. Events of the day raced through my mind, most of them good a couple of them could have been bad, scary and life changing.

It had been a full day and I was beat, but glad to have experienced it all.

We started the week planning to take a few day trips for my husband’s vacation. Instead, hot and muggy weather and a series of thunderstorms throughout the week kept us home until Friday. We’d also planned to visit my 88-year old aunt that day, taking my dad (her brother) with us. I talked to my aunt Tuesday and by Wednesday she was in the hospital. In the end my dad went to see her while we went to Animal Adventure Park, which is the park in Harpursville, N.Y. that became famous a few years ago when everyone in the world, it seems, was waiting for April the giraffe to give birth and then watched her do just that.

My aunt is doing better but we are not sure when she will go home or if she will go to rehab. They believe a severe urinary tract infection caused her to become disoriented. By the time my dad got to see her, her mind had cleared, luckily.

It’s been two years since we’ve been at the adventure park, so my daughter had forgot a lot about what they had to offer, but she had a blast. She’s an animal enthusiast so she liked to talk to the animals while she fed them. She was most fascinated with the goats, which I found odd since we can see goats just about anywhere around us. We do not, however, see African lions, African penguins,  giraffes, and monkeys around our home. I am most fascinated with the giraffes because they are so friendly and tall. We’re not allowed to pet them but people are allowed to feed them carrots. It is very hard not to pet them when they reach up over the fence with their large heads.

April, who we loved visiting when we first went there, passed away this April. She was euthanized after a long bout of arthritis made it difficult for her to stand any longer, which is, of course, something giraffes need to do to survive. A member of the staff chatted with me about it and said how hard it was. The owner of the facility, Jordan Patch, asked the entire staff for their opinion before the final decision was made and it was very hard on all of them, she said.

There is a statue in honor of April and her son Azizi in the front of the park. Azizi was sent to another facility and passed away from a severe stomach issue sometime this year, or last. April’s other son Tajiri, the one everyone watch being born, is still at the facility, along with his father Oliver. They also have two other giraffes, Jahari (I am sure I have that spelled wrong) who they think may be pregnant and Desmond.

I honestly thought we might never be able to leave there. My daughter wanted to go around and around again and again, but mainly wanted to keep feeding the goats. Even my son enjoyed conversing with the goats. His biggest fascination, however, was the monkeys. He loves monkeys and I have no idea why. One species of monkeys had just had a baby two days before we were there. The squirrel monkeys had also recently had babies and they looked like little aliens.

We enjoyed watching them feed the lions. The male lion and the lioness had a small tumble about four feet away from us, which was pretty cool to watch. They have a mix of African lions and Timbavati White Lions.

Little Miss was also able to hold a joey, or a baby Kangaroo (for a fee of course) and thoroughly enjoyed that, even when it almost scratched her eye out.

I will probably share some extra photographs from the day there in a post later this week.

What I’m Reading

I finished a book by Elizabeth Maddrey called So You Want A Second Chance. It was what some call a “billionaire romance” but it was much different than other such romances. There was less focus on “oh he’s got money and she doesn’t” and more focus on the couple who had known each other years before and reconnected after the man has a heart attack. This couple was also an “older couple” in their 50s instead of the younger couples these books usually feature. It was nice to see a book focus on the older generation (since I am slowly becoming a member of that group).

I am still reading The Cat Who Knew A Cardinal by Lillian Jackson Braun and I also went back to finish Maggie by Charles Martin which I abandoned months ago because it was pretty depressing.

For fun I am reading Ready to Trust by Tina Radcliffe, a Love Inspire Romance.


What I’m Watching

Since my husband’s vacation was mostly sweated and rained out (hot temps and then thunderstorms, as I mentioned above) we watched old movies and shows most of the week.

We watched two classics I had never seen, The Birds, and Double Indemnity.

I also watched episode seven of The Chosen and loved it, especially the interaction between Quintis and Jesus. You can watch the episode on The Chosen app, which you can download to your phone or tablet, and then cast to your TV, or watch right on your phone or tablet.

We watched three or four episodes of Lovejoy as well.

What I’m Listening To

I am listening to an audio book by David James Warren (which is actually three authors) from the Rembrandt Stone series. I don’t listen to audiobooks very often. I prefer reading books but I signed up for a book tour for the fourth book in this series in August so I have a lot of reading to do before I get a copy of that book. I’m enjoying it so far. It’s a time-travel mystery/thriller

What I’m Writing

I am working through revisions and edits of Harvesting Hope for the next month since it comes out on Amazon on August 12, so that’s mainly what I wrote this past week.

On the blog I shared a Tell Me More About post with author Robin W. Pearson.

So that’s my week in review. What have you been reading, doing, watching, or writing lately? Let me know in the comments.

9 Comments on “Sunday Bookends: Giraffes, lions and goats. Oh my.

  1. So glad your aunt is doing better!!
    I love those zoos that are interactive like this, I took my kids to one when they were a lot younger and they still talk about it.
    Great pictures, I feel like I just got a zoo fix!! The closest one to us is a four hour drive!

    Liked by 1 person

      • Oh very cool!! I actually prefer smaller zoos because then I know I’m getting to see everything in one day… When we go to the zoo in Omaha, Nebraska (which is huge) it’s overwhelming and we never get to see everything.

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  2. Your trip to the zoo sounds so fun!! And I want to feed a giraffe and hold a baby joey! LOL. I am glad that Little Miss did not get scratched although it sounds like she was super brave. 🙂 I am also glad to hear that your aunt is doing better!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I thought she might have been scratched in the eye and then the guy who handles them would freak out but it all worked out okay. It was a really nice day. Pricey, but worth it for the experience.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m glad your aunt is doing better. How scary! I hope she gets to come home soon. I’ll be praying for her.
    That’s so sad about April. I’m sure that’s got to be such a tough decision. I bet the animals are just like family.
    The little kangaroo is so cute! I bet that made Little Miss’s day.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Little Miss did love it! She had a blast. I’m hoping my aunt comes home soon too. I haven’t heard yet how she is doing but I know she was doing well on Friday.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. That is a big joey!!

    I love Alfred Hitchcock movies, but “The Birds” is one that so far have chosen to avoid. (That and “Psycho,” which I think would seriously give me nightmares.) Interesting thing about “The Birds,” though, is that the majority was filmed on location in Bodega, which is about 20 minutes from where I grew up. I passed the church (now a historic site) regularly on the way to the coast, and my favorite restaurant there has all kinds of photos, trivia, and memorabilia from the film on the walls. After reading/ seeing that all my youth, I feel like I’ve pretty much seen the movie anyway. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Birds wasn’t as bad as I thought in some ways and worse in other ways. I stayed fairly calm despite the fact my mom hated that movie and it traumatized her to the point she freaked out one time when some birds attacked her while she was mowing the lawn. She wasn’t really freaking out but sort of laughing freaking out.

      That is so neat about you passing the church! I didn’t know where it was filmed.

      We have now watched both Pyscho and The Birds and I think Psycho freaked me out even more than The Birds – probably because the birds weren’t that real looking and I sort of wanted the main character to be eaten. She irritated me for some reason. That sounds so awful. I know. lol.

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