Monday, August 10, 2015

Fish Slinging Surprises

Growing up every occasion was a reason to celebrate.  My mom even made getting report cards a grand affair by throwing a Star Student Dinner complete with gold china. So it should come as no surprise that I think birthdays should be celebrated all out too.  Even if said birthday means that I'll be closer to 30 than college.

This year my birthday falls on a weekday. Since we also happen to live thousands of miles away from our families and friends, I've been a little nervous about how much celebrating could be done. My sweet husband pulled out all the stops to make my birthday feel special before it even happened.

I came out of work on Friday to find this on my windshield.

Here's what was on the pink paper.

So sweet.

I noticed two things right away - "Santa Fe Tours" meant we would be driving.  The Snickers bar was a clue too because it's not my favorite candy.  The Wildlife Conversation Center we love visiting has a porcupine named Snickers so I thought that might have something to do with it.

I got home and Nathanial had more red roses for me. He had even arranged them beautifully.

The next morning over breakfast he talked me into telling him my guess for what we were doing that afternoon.  He spent the rest of the morning convincing me that we were going to the Wildlife Center but not for a tour like I thought.  I was really excited about the tour because we hadn't done it before and it would involve the baby moose at the Center.  I was a little bummed after he made me believe we were just visiting; the same as every other time we'd been there.  He finally told me the truth as we were driving into the center.

The tour was incredible. It was such a great day.

I was SO giddy.

You can't see but our lanyards said Behind the Scenes Tour VIP.

Our tour meant we could pet or feed all of the animals. We were allowed to enter most of the enclosures.  SO. AWESOME.

Our first stop was to see two large bull moose.  We got to pet them and I was in heaven.  See that look - that's pure love and joy.

Our second stop was to feed Snickers the porcupine.

He was being a little picky and didn't want any of the fruit or vegetables we had to offer.  Nathanial convinced him to take a snap pea so then the rest of us were able to get him to eat too.

Next we visited baby Sitka Black-Tailed Deer. They were tiny and so sweet.

After the deer, we headed to the bears.  It was time for the Brown Bear feeding! I didn't realize we would be feeding them. It was a cool, albeit very smelly experience.

I think my face pretty much sums up how I felt about the fish. That's a giant King Salmon we're throwing. We accidentally hit the bear with it.  He responded by throwing it back at us. It was a moment I'll always remember and one I would love to have caught on camera.

Next we headed to see the baby Musk Ox.  They were cute but really weird little animals.

They were convinced they could get milk from the men of the group or by sucking on our fingers. So odd.

Our last stop was to see Tok and Kenai, the moose calves, who were in quarantine.  Tok managed to break his leg last week so they weren't even viewable by the general public. I was glad we were on the tour and could see them since they are kind of my favorite.

I had a DSLR camera with me but was too excited by all the happenings to get good pictures. Most of these were taken on Nathanial's iPhone (which is why he isn't in many.)

I had a goofy smile plastered on my face all day. It was the best day planned by the best husband.

If Saturday is any indication, 27 is looking pretty good.

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