Sunday, March 9, 2008


I learned something this past week: Pittsburgh is spelled with an "h" at the end. I also learned that 250 miles is a bit too far for our little family for a short trip.
This weekend we went to Pittsburgh. Bob is working extra these days so he can take every other Friday off. He's doing this so we can get projects done or do something fun. Since we've been using our Saturdays a lot lately for projects we decided to have fun. We thought of going to Pennsylvania because there's all kinds of fun stuff up there- more so in the summer though. One of the things I found in my looking was the Pittsburgh Zoo. So we decided to go there.
I discovered something really cool though. If you go to you can select "road trip" and it will find hotel deals within a certain radius of your location (up to 250 miles). This was how I discovered how far away Pittsburgh is. I also discovered that Virginia Beach, VA is slightly closer. We probably would have gone there if it hadn't been raining in this entire region this weekend. The morning before we left (that would be Friday) I discovered that the rain would actually be snow up in Pittsburgh. Oh well! We brought hats and gloves and warm coats.
The hotel we stayed at wasn't as nice as we had hoped it would be. Apparently we've gotten really spoiled with our no smoking basically anywhere county and the years we lived in Utah as well. Our room had three ashtrays in it (or as Jaide called them- bowls). But we didn't let the stink get us down. Jaide, excited as could be said, "there's a hairdryer in the bathroom!" She's become quite fond of me drying her hair after her bath these days. We went to the Olive Garden for dinner (thanks for the gift card mom!). It's been a long time since I was asked at a restaurant what my "smoking preference" was. But the food was good and the service was good and even Kiree was good- she slept the whole time.
Sadly, the hotel wasn't very soundproof and the noisy neighbors woke Kiree up during the night. Then she just woke up all on her own several more times (I guess she did sleep a lot on the drive up).
Saturday morning we got our continental breakfast, checked out and headed to the zoo. The Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium is a pretty neat place. I think it would probably be even more fun in the summer (then they have rides, a train, this huge slide/playground thing, a petting zoo area, and more). It was still fun though on Saturday. Some of the animals weren't out but some you could go inside and see (and that was good as it was cold and then snowing!) The aquarium was all indoors and that was really nice.
Here were some of the highlights:
We got to see the "jellies" and Jaide asked why Marlin and Dorie weren't in with them. "Because then they'd get all stung Jaide." Then Jaide found Dorie and her family in another tank. Jaide said she found Nemo, but I don't think any of the fish looked too much like him.
When we first got inside the aquarium there was a big tank with this interesting looking seahorse like things. While we were looking at that, a peacock came up to the entrance of the aquarium. I guess he struts around loose at the zoo (they had peacocks loose at the Milwaukee zoo when I went there years ago too). I had wondered why the automatic doors didn't open until I got very, very close to them, and when I saw the peacock strutting near the door I guess I had my answer. I wanted so badly to let the peacock inside, but I resisted.
We got to see the elephants inside their building and apes were also inside their own building. One of the gorillas was picking his nose and eating it- ewwww.
Bob and Jaide crawled through the Meerkat tunnel and got a good look at the little guys.
The tigers, lions, snow leopard, giraffes, polar bears, kodiak bears, spectacled bears, sealions and seals were all outside. The polar bear and seal enclosure areas were pretty interesting. I wish we would have taken a picture of the outside part. They had it set up to look like a little seaport town. Then there was a part where you
could go underneath the water. (the first picture in this post was taken there, it looked pretty cool even though the polar bear wasn't swimming at the time- I don't blame him it was cold!).
Little Kiree, who turned four months on Saturday slept the whole time we were at the zoo. I got one picture to prove she was really there. If you look closely you can see part of her little face all bundled up in her baby bucket.The trip home was a little rough. At least the three of us girls each got in a nap! But everyone was quite ready to be home by about Hagerstown. We probably won't be traveling quite so far for a weekend outing again but hey, we still had some fun.


Rusty & Kathy said...

yay for a road trip. i'm glad you guys had a good time. it was fun to talk to you the other day, too.

The Mahaffey Family said...

Good for you guys! It's nice to do something out of 'the routine' every now and again.

Tracy said...

Oh, how fun to get away. I love staying in hotel rooms, but noisey neighbors and smoky smells I could do without. You found some fun places in Pittsburgh with an H.

Jenni said...

Fun!! So glad you guys had a good time!!:)

Hules said...

So much fun! These are the memories that last forever!