Baby’s First Trip to the Zoo

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Rooney’s first trip to the zoo almost didn’t happen but I sure am glad it did. Without going into too much detail, I’m stuck back in this never ending cycle of my gut health causing me anxiety and my anxiety affecting my gut health. On top of that, I read on the Riverbanks website that because of March Madness activities they were expecting the zoo to reach full capacity between 11 am and 2 pm. I decided not to let my worries get to me and go anyways. The zoo is only an hour’s drive away from us and I’d have my mom and husband there to help with any issues that might arise during our trip. Rooney was an angel and took a nap on the way there and back. We didn’t run into any traffic or have to stop along the route either.

The zoo was definitely the most crowded I’ve ever seen it but we had the most ideal weather. I knew if we waited any longer in the spring to go that it would be too hot! We applied sunscreen and put Rooney’s little bucket hat on her to protect her head from the sun. Next time I’ll remember a hat for myself! Aside from a little fussiness at the beginning that was remedied by super dad to the rescue with the Ergobaby, baby girl did great in her stroller! We stopped to take breaks for feedings when she was hungry and just incorporated that time into our lunch and snack breaks. We were able to see a few of the March Madness basketball themed activities for the animals while we were there. We missed out on seeing the gorilla baby but the lion cubs were all so cute (and big already)! Several of the viewing areas we quickly passed through due to the crowds but we were able to cover all the grounds of the zoo and garden during our trip.

Over the past few years the Riverbanks team has made so many upgrades that have made for an enjoyable experience. It’s a lot of fun to think back on my school trips to the zoo and what the animal habitats looked like twenty years ago! We couldn’t leave the zoo without a souvenir to mark Rooney’s first visit. After going back and forth over which stuffed animals we wanted to get her we finally settled on a colorful tree frog and a kangaroo... until we walked past a little doll zookeeper with her elephant on the way to the register and fell in love with that instead! So not only did Rooney have her first trip to the zoo but she came home with her first real plush doll! I’m glad we have Rooney’s first mini road trip under our belt and it has me feeling a little more confident about making some longer drives this summer.