Tag Archives: zoo

Frightfully Fun Halloween Happenings

We began our Halloween fun with an evening at the zoo for their fun Boo at the Zoo event.  We’ve gone the past 3 years and every year it has been cold and rainy.  I was trying to be optimistic for this year and fortunately it was a perfect evening.  Chilly, but not too cold for costumes, and NOT raining!  My friend from work (again the wonderful birthday party co-planner) came with us and her two boys.  A couple months back I found a great owl costume on the blog A Beautiful Mess.  I LOVED it and showed it to my co-worker right away.  We decided we needed to dress as owls for Halloween and got to work immediately on our costumes.  We were so proud of ourselves for getting started so much in advance (not the norm for either of us busy, working moms) and then it fizzled out until right before our Boo at the Zoo trip when we made a frantic effort to complete the costumes.  We loved how they turned out and were so proud of ourselves… until we got to Boo at the Zoo 😦

The costumes were pretty simple to make.  The base of the dress is a white pillow case, cut out a hole for your head and two for your arms and add rectangular scraps of fabric with the bottom edges rounded off.  We hot glued everything, because it’s so much easier than sewing-plus I think I’m addicted to hot gluing.  I use it whenever possible, even if it doesn’t always make sense.  The original idea on A Beautiful Mess only had the front of the pillow case covered.  When we admired our dresses in the mirror we decided that the back needed something too.  From the front we looked fantastic, but from the back it just looked like we were wearing pillow cases.  So we decided to add the ‘feathers’ to the back using one solid color of felt.  I also came up with a cute tail pattern and added iron-on fusing material to my fabric to add the colors to the felt tail.  I found some fun feather hair clips at Jo-Ann Fabrics and my co-worker had a glamorous side pony tail accented with a few feathers.  We were all set.

Fiona wore her Rapunzel dress again, from her birthday party, and I made a cute little pirate costume for Lexi which she just wore over a warm sweatshirt.

Boo at the Zoo was tons of fun, especially since it wasn’t super cold or rainy.  We saw a magic show, pretty lights, the kids each got fun glowing things, we got to see a cool juggler (who coincidentally is also scheduled to do a show at our library in the early spring)  and it was just kind of cool wandering around the zoo at night with kids in costumes all over.  The only disappointing part of the whole evening was when we were heading into the animal petting barn and a woman looked at us and said, “Oh how cute, are you guys dressed up as quilts!”  My co-worker and I were so disappointing and saddened that someone thought we looked like walking quilts instead of cute little owls.  In fact neither one of us actually wound up wearing our costumes on Halloween, because we both felt kind of deflated about the whole thing by that point.

Trick or Treating is always a fantastic time in my neighborhood.  Everyone is out with fire pits, some houses give out full sized candy bars to the kids and jello shots for the parents.  It’s such a festive occasion.  Tons of great decorations, serious crowds of children roaming the streets.  It’s nothing like our old neighborhood where people turned off all the lights and holed up in their houses.  Fiona was lucky to get half a bucket of candy.  Here even after just going halfway around our block, both girls had filled their buckets and deposited their candy into a large bag that my husband or I carried throughout the night.

We met up with some friends from our street and the kids ran out into the night with much whooping and hollering and jumping.

Several houses get together every year and set up rows of tables with bowls of candy while they party on a grassy spot between several of the houses

Lexi gets candy from a friend

Is Fiona's friend stinky? No they're just standing in front of steaming toxic waste

This is why my neighborhood is seriously awesome. These kids were roaming the streets with a full size -real coffin (family is in the funeral business)

So now, I’m officially looking forward to next year 🙂

And a Halloween Scrapbook Page 🙂



It’s a Jungle Out There Storytime

This week, our story time theme was Wild Animals.

I began storytime with a cute poem:

Here comes the elephant,
Crash! Crash! Crash!  stomp feet
Here comes the cheetah,
Dash! Dash! Dash!  run in place
Here comes the monkey,
Swing Swing Swing  wave arms over head
Here comes the lion,
He’s the KING!   ROAR!!!!
-from a storytime index card at the library

Our first felt board went with a song:
Old Mac Donald Had a Jungle (I read it as a Zoo since not all the animals live in the jungle some are on African Plains)
Old Mac Donald had a zoo.  EIEIO
And in that zoo he had a monkey.  EIEIO
With an EEEEEE here, and an EEEEE there,
Here and EEEEEE, there and EEEEEE,
Everywhere an EEEEE, EEEEE
Old Mack Donald had a zoo, EIEIO

elephant….stomp stomp
crocodile…. snap snap
lion…. roar roar
tiger….growl growl
zebra… bray bray
rhino…. grunt grunt
giraffe…. munch munch
hippo…. splash splash
snake…. hiss hiss
ostrich…. flap flap
-idea given to me by fellow librarian at work (she also made the cute little snake felt piece!)

I love the felt I found to make the elephant and the Rhino.  It was this pack of recycled felt at Micheals and the gray was a cool ridged material.  Perfect for bumpy skinned animals!  We put some animals together from an assortment of animal felt boards I had already made for this song.

Later during storytime my felt board book was One Day in the Jungle by Colin West.

It’s a chain of event stories that begins with a sneeze (as many good chain of even stories do!) that spreads from animal to animal until at the end the elephant gives a mighty sneeze and blows away the jungle.  The kids had a great chuckle at this one.  It was a cute story.