It’s been a busy but fun-filled week in this house! Our son turned 7 on Thursday and the celebrations began in earnest. He chose to have some friends over for tea after school on the day of his birthday, which surprisingly wasn’t anywhere near as noisy or chaotic as I was expecting! Friday evening was family time and the four of us celebrated with dinner at Frankie and Benny’s, followed by a visit to the cinema to see Avengers Assemble – thank you Disney for another fantastic movie.
Saturday was party day, a party at the zoo to be precise. Now if you have seen my moans in last week’s blog, you will know that the weather has been rather unkind recently and I can tell you I was not looking forward to a soggy day at the zoo. Well somebody was looking out for us and when I got up yesterday morning the sky was blue, and there was a large orange phenomenon in the sky – it has been so long since I have seen the sun I was beginning to think it was a myth!
The zoo in question was Colchester Zoo and if you have never been but are in the vicinity I thoroughly recommend a visit. We met up with our party guests at the entrance to the zoo and headed inside for our first activity. Unfortunately we had managed to book a party on the same day that almost every Scout and Beaver group in the area had decided to visit (at least it felt that way – a bit like the tour groups you see in Disney World!) We navigated our way through the crowds without losing any of our party – and a few of them did their best to wander off – and arrived at Penguin Shores. For one of his activities DS had said that he wanted to feed the penguins. I was thoroughly convinced that the minute he realised he was going to be handling dead fish he would change his mind, but he confidently reminded me of the fact that he had held a dead fish before when feeding the dolphins at Discovery Cove! He really enjoyed feeding the penguins and came back (stinking of fish!!) and telling me all sorts of facts that he had learnt from the keeper.
Next up was face painting, I had added this to the party as I thought they would all find this a fun thing to do, unfortunately one child (not mine!) declared face painting as “uncool” and therefore none of the kids wanted to get their faces painted opting instead to disappear into the soft play area.
Animals seen – penguins
Faces painted – 3 (two of the girls and one of the guests’ little sister)
This party was not going quite the way I had predicted!
Given the fact that all 12 children were safely ensconced in the soft play area and were all having a great time, the adults decided to take the opportunity to sit and have a coffee. After about 30 mins we called them out of their ‘cage’ to start getting their shoes on as it was lunch time, at this point one child realised they had lost their jumper inside the soft play somewhere. 20 minutes later it was finally discovered at the bottom of the ball pit!
Lunch time went very smoothly, evidently soft play before lunch was a great idea as they were all shattered and hungry and so sat quietly through lunch.
The other activity DS had chosen to do was ‘Birds of Prey’ and he was desperate to hold an owl (big Harry Potter fan!), now they don’t guarantee which bird you will get to hold so I was a little nervous that he was going to be disappointed but luck was on our side again as they bought out a beautiful barn owl for him to hold. DS got to learn all about the barn owl and was able to instruct him to fly to another perch and then call him back.
Animals seen – 3 (we had also seen the lions whilst waiting to go into the falconry area). Still not going the way I had planned!
After our time with the Birds of Prey it was time to return some of the guests to their parents. This left family and their children as well as our two, so our group had shrunk and become a lot more manageable. We decided now it was time to finally see some animals – we were in the zoo after all! We strolled around the zoo, fed the elephants, saw the naughty chimps and the impressive Komodo Dragons as well as many other wonderful animals.
As the afternoon started to cool we decided it was time to head for home, and so shattered but very happy we left the zoo.
Our son had the most wonderful day and made some fantastic memories with his friends and family, what more could you ask for?
This week’s events have meant that very little made it into the savings pot for WDW, but I’m fairly sure I heard DH drop a few pennies into the sealed tin over the week and as a certain supermarket chain regularly tell us ‘every little helps!’
See ya real soon!