Friday, March 26, 2010

I Know Her Name

Do you remember this girl? The little girl without a name. For a year now she has broken my heart and occupied my thoughts and prayers. Sometimes I thought it might be easier if I could forget, but I couldn't. And, I didn't really want to. Ignorance is not bliss. Knowledge may be painful, but it makes us responsible.

Today, that responsibility has come full circle. Since my return from Ethiopia last year, I have worked to find out more about this little one and to see if there were avenues for us to be able to help.

The e-mail I've been waiting for was in my in-box this morning. Her name is Chaltu. (I wonder what that means?) She was abandoned and has been in the orphanage for a year and a half. The Dr. believes she is 6. Six. What kind of deprivation or illness would mean that a six-year old was the size of a two-year old? She does have some vision. She doesn't speak, but she does recognize her name now. She can't walk, and indeed, is unable to stand unless someone supports her. She eats, but she doesn't really grow. The biggest improvement that they have seen since her arrival at the orphanage is that she is able to cry now if she needs something. They don't think that anything can be done medically for her, and if it can, it can't in Ethiopia.

But, in the midst of such a bleak picture, there is good news. She wants love. She craves attention. And, God has not forgotten. A year ago, He made sure that of all of the children there, she was the one that caught my eye and my heart. He has ensured that I cannot forget.

I can't tell you all of the details now, because they're still being worked out, but Chaltu will be loved. God has not provided the ability or leading for us to adopt her, but we are working with the orphanage director to make a plan to provide her with one-on-one care and affection, someone that will love her and tell her how much her Heavenly Father loves her. Not bragging. We're not good, we're not out doing great things. But, God is good, and we are grateful to be humble tools that He sees fit to use from time to time as He works out His plans.

There is a favorite song of mine that I have given up being able to sing without tears since last April. Everytime I have tried to sing the chorus, I can't. I can't, because I can't get past memories of the orphanage and praying that all of those little kids would have someone who would know their name and their thoughts and would be able to tell them and show them just how much their Heavenly Father loves them.

The chorus says: He knows my name. He knows my every thought. He sees each tear that falls and hears me when I call.

Chaltu, He knows your name. He knows your thoughts. He sees your tears, and He does hear. And, He has not forgotten. Help is on the way.

May God cause us to never be too comfortable in our 1st world lives and to not choose blissful ignorance over the opportunity to be instruments in His plans for those who wait for Good News.

Hi Ho! Hi Ho! It's Back To School I Go!

My apologies for being absent most of the week. Things got a little (more than usual) crazy around our house.

Most of you won't know as we hadn't really advertised it until now, but Gareth's job situation is not good. He loves his job and the company he works for, and he loves the training he's doing, but the oil and gas industry is experiencing very difficult times economically right now. We survived the first round of lay-offs last Spring and then unpaid leave in the Summer. We survived a second round of lay-offs last month, but his company hasn't had a new contract for more than 3 quarters now and more lay-offs appear to be imminent. More work does not appear to be imminent. And, despite noises about the recession ending, the thought in the oil and gas industry at the minute is that there is no expectation of improvement for at least another couple of years.

Anyhow, all of that to say that we are aware that Gareth's continued employment is very tenuous at the minute. And, although he has permanent residency status and pays taxes, we are unsure that he qualifies for unemployment benefits. So, we have had a couple of weeks of being very concerned and some very late nights praying for peace and calm and then discussions about what prudent steps we could/should take.

In the end, we have agreed that it would be wise for me to work towards re-licensing as a Registered Nurse. This is a possibility that we talked about two years ago when we were working out how to pay for an adoption, but God closed those doors for us at that time. This time, the doors appear to be wide open, so after prayer and discussion, we have walked through them.

I have been out of college for 12 years and haven't worked for almost 7 of those, so I will need to take a refresher course (70 hours of online review, 10 hours of skills lab practice, and then 80 hours of supervised clinical practice). Once that is done, I will qualify to resit the NCLEX-RN (licensure exam). (I cannot even begin to describe to you how daunting a prospect re-sitting the NCLEX is! After taking it the first time, I told myself I would never do it again. Funny how these things have a way of coming back to haunt you!)

So, this week I have been filling out applications, getting titers drawn to prove my immunity to all of the various nasties you have to be vaccinated for before working as a nurse, and getting enrolled to update my Basic Life Support certification. And, I've begun my review. (It's just as well that Gareth is gone by the time I get my shower in the mornings-I think he might laugh a lot at the sound of my chanting my serum electrolyte levels, normal blood counts, and ABG levels in the shower!)

It is our hope that I will be able to start my online review by the end of April and work at it (around the kids' homeschool and family responsibilities) with plans to be complete it by mid-June. This would leave me July and August (our homeschool summer break) to complete my skills lab and clinical work before the munchkins and I start 2nd grade/kindergarten/pre-school in September. Of course, if Gareth does end up un-employed, then I would move full-time into finishing requirements and taking the NCLEX so that I could work as quickly as possible.

It might get a little hairy around here for awhile, but I am feeling very upbeat about it. I have been working on a new schedule that will block out study time for me every day (I'll need it if I'm going to get caught up. My "nursing" brain has been in a coma since the day I left my last job).

Once I do get my license, then the hope is that I will be able to work week-ends in order to pay for the cost of re-licensing. Once that is done, then I'll just try to pick up a couple of shifts a month and some Continuing Education Hours in order to maintain my license (Really, I hope I never, ever, ever need to take the NCLEX again!).

So, if you run into me out and about and I'm chanting bizarre sounding strings of words and numbers, just try to ignore it. I'm only studying. Oh, and if you think about it, I sure would appreciate your prayers for energy and endurance and wisdom as I balance my roles as Wife, Mommy, Teacher, Domestic Goddess, and now student...
And, I'm sure that Gareth would appreciate your prayers as well. The constant stress of knowing that your job is not certain is very wearing, and we both need to learn to trust God more in this area.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Things That Make a Mommy/Teacher Smile

I don't know what Nathan has "caught", but I like it! (And, I'm hoping that he gives it to the other munchkins.)

Last week having done about 30 minutes worth of kindergarten, Nathan asked if he could take a break. I was a little disappointed, but decided that as we have started kindergarten early that I shouldn't push too hard. So, I said, "Sure, you go take a break and get the wiggles out, and we'll do more later". Not even ten minutes later, Nathan comes quietly back downstairs, sits down in his chair and starts back to work. "Nathan, did you decide you didn't want a break", I asked him. His reply, "No, Mom, I had a break, and now I want to do more school". The same pattern has repeated every day since. Nathan works for a little while, asks for a break, and less than 10-15 minutes later, he comes back without needing to be called. I know that this probably won't last forever, but I sure am enjoying it for now. It's really special to be a part of teaching/learning when they're so excited about it.

Today, he topped it with this: When he told me his math page was finished I asked him to hand it to me so that I could check it. He started to hand it to me, and then pulled it back, saying, "Just a minute. Let me just double check it for messiness before I give it to you". Then, he proceeded to (very seriously) check each number he had written before handing it to me.

If only I could find a way to bottle this drive....

Monday, March 22, 2010

Mommy and the Munchkins Recommend: Seeds Family Worship

If you had walked up our sidewalk last night, you might have been a little shocked to hear LOUD music playing. If you had walked into the house, then you definitely would have been in for a surprise. There were 3 munchkins dancing furiously around the living room, and the music was so infectious that the Munchkins' Mommy was dancing in the kitchen (cleaning the kitchen hasn't been that much fun for a long time!).

I've been looking for some new Christian music and/or Scripture memory Cd's that the kids could enjoy, and have been disillusioned by alot of what I've found. There seems to be a whole lot of "sounding cool" out there, but not much that has any real substance to it. When the kids were younger, we enjoyed Steve Greene's "Hide 'em in your heart" CDs, but honestly, if I have to listen to them one more time, I might lose my mind. We enjoy Cedarmont Kids' Worship, but, I was hoping for something else to give us more listening options, and really wanting some Scripture memory CDs. So, when I found Seeds Family Worship last week, I was pretty excited. The words are pure Scripture, the tunes/beat are catchy and not "kiddish", and so I ordered them. We now have 3 of their CDs, and they haven't been off yet. The munchkins love them, and so does the munchkins' Mommy. Oh, and a great plus, each CD you order comes with a free one, so you can have one for yourself and one to pass on.

Check them out (just make sure you scroll down to the bottom and pause my playlist first):

Makes Me Smile

I hope this health care plan covers hearing aids, because it's clear Democrats who voted for it have not heard the majority of Americans who didn't want government-controlled health care crammed down their throats." -Mississipi Governor Haley Barbour

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Birthday Pictures

Nate had a great 5th birthday! Well, he had a great 5th birthday if you don't count the part where he had to wait for Daddy to get home to open most of his presents-that part was torture.

But, Daddy eventually made it home, and the party could begin.

Scary, almost, the way that Nathan has become a 5-year old, including the need to make silly faces at the camera.

Opening presents was serious business.
Poor Rosie! She still can't believe that it's not all about her. She had a little bit of a hard time coming to grips with the fact that this wasn't her birthday, her party, or her presents. But, she did finally get the idea and enjoyed looking at Nathan's presents. Unfortunately, she has talked non-stop about her "pink princess birthday party" non-stop ever since.

Did I mention that Nathan shows all the marks of having indeed become a 5-year old male?

He loved all of his presents.

Most exciting was the fact that he got a tool belt with Nathan-sized tools just like Daddy's! After supper, they headed straight out into the garage for a wood-working project. He now asks me several times a day if I need a hammer for anything. He's just dying to lend me his hammer!

Since we were having a "big party" on Saturday with his friends, he agreed to save his cake for then. So, we had ice cream sundaes for desert instead.

Then, on Saturday, we got together with Nathan's 25 bestest friends and their parents and had a big party. Most years we only do a family party, but on their 5th birthday, the kids get to choose to have a party with friends. Nathan chose to go to Pump-It-Up, which has the coolest inflatable toys anywhere (and the adults get to play, too!!!!!). My apologies for the picture quality here. The room with the toys was poorly lit, and I just couldn't get my camera to cooperate.

Gareth hadn't been to Pump-It-Up before. I think he might want to go back for his birthday! He and one of the other guys did some racing down the slide, and at one point he actually slid clear off the end and went heels over head. He has some great-looking rug burns on his elbows.

Notice the Mommies hanging out in the background. Several of my friends and I have found that the best way to have a conversation is to take the kids somewhere to jump, then just sit inside one of the inflatables and chat. Seriously-in January I got to have over half-an-hours conversation with a friend, even though we had six kids between us!

Shhh-don't tell, but Nathan loves Ally! He's been quite adamant that he's going to marry her for 2 years now. No lovey-dovey stuff when they're together, but from time to time he comes to remind me that when he's too old to live with me that he's going to marry Ally. (Not sure what her Daddy thinks of this plan!)
After all of the kids had bounced themselves silly, we headed to the party room for cake and presents. Nathan wanted me to make a "swamp thang" cake on a beach. I have to admit, that I was disappointed in the outcome, but Nathan was happy with it.

How fantastic to have a birthday party with that many kids but not have to do any of the cleanup afterwards! And, Nathan loved the party room with the inflatable crown for the birthday boy to sit on.
Did I mention Nathan has become a typical 5-year old male full of typical 5-year old male silly faces?!
He's still pretty handsome, though! We had more girls than boys there. Just so happens that Nathan is friends with more girls than boys. Rosie sure was glad that Brooke is one of Nathan's friends, too.
And, Nathan likes little guys, too. He had plenty of younger kids he wanted on his invitation list, so we had loads of adorable babies for cuddling.

Makes me wish I had one!!!
Just look at those hands. She obviously enjoyed the frosting.
After wrestling with the "swamp thang" cupcakes, it was on to opening presents.
And, once again, opening presents was serious business.

Grateful, I was, that these arrows were suction cup-tipped.

Thanks to all of you who were able to come and helped make Nathan's party so special.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Obviously, my comment to Gareth about how pleased I was about having avoided all of the nasty viruses running around was ill-timed. By Saturday evening, I felt retched. Sore throat, sinus pain, earaches, cough, fever, just generally achy all over....

Today is the first day that I've really accomplished anything all week. Still, looking on the bright side-not being able to taste anything really does remove your appetite entirely. No flour, no sugar is no problem when you don't want to eat anything!

Sorry it's taken me so long to post birthday pictures. I just haven't felt like doing much of anything except for sleeping. But, I'm downloading pictures right now, so hopefully I'll get some posted for you tomorrow.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Honey for the Heart

The love of learning, the sequestered nooks,And all the sweet serenity of books.~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

You may have tangible wealth untold;Caskets of jewels and coffers of gold.Richer than I you can never be -I had a mother who read to me.~Strickland Gillilan

As Noah and I worked through those early months of our 2009/2010 schoolyear, I became convinced that although Noah was doing really well in school with his workbooks and my "traditional" teaching methods we still were missing something. I set out to read much more about teaching styles/learning styles and then bought a notebook to begin to record what I liked, what I didn't like, and what my goals were for my childrens' education.

By October, I was firmly convinced that I wanted to "light a fire" in my children giving them their own passion to learn, as opposed to just "filling up their buckets" with all of the things they needed to know. And, I had decided, that for us, using only textbooks and workbooks wasn't going to develop that real passion for learning. And so, I laid aside our science, Bible, and history workbooks, and began a new plan.

Our new plan: lots of really good books!

While the children are young, we are focusing on a really strong foundation in Math, Reading, and Writing. And everything else we do from real "living" books. For the younger ones, lots of entertaining books to create a love of books and reading, and for Noah, adding in lots of books based on American history. We've covered the founding of America, the Revolutionary War, and right now, he is reading books about the westward expansion.

For next year, I have found a curriculum that uses literature as its' basis, and we are really excited about starting it. But for the rest of this year, I am creating my own. Part of the books I choose are those recommended in Honey For A Child's Heart by Gladys Hunt. The rest of them are books that interest us. Every couple of weeks, we sit down together and talk about what we'd like to learn about, then we take a trip to the library and check out as many books as we can on the subject. We're having so much fun (and, learning so much, too)! Our list of books we have read this year is now almost 200 books long. Some short, some long (we've just finished the entire Little House on the Library collection), some funny, some sad, and all of them a great adventure.

Reading is such a great family activity, and the whole family can enjoy learning and laughing together, whether you homeschool or not. So, I thought that I'd like to occasionally share a really good book that we've read that you might enjoy with your children or grandchildren.

Here are our current favorites:

Honey For A Child's Heart (Gladys Hunt)-I love this one. The book lists at the end have led us to some great books that we would never have looked for otherwise.

Winnie-the-Pooh (A.A. Milne) -Noah, Gareth, and I all love the Bear of Very Little Brain. The books are very little like the Disney cartoons-we think they're much better! We bought the 60th anniversary edition, so the original illustrations make it extra special.

Officer Buckle and Gloria (Peggy Rathmann)-Nathan fell in love with Officer Buckle and Gloria. We borrowed this book from the library and renewed it twice. It about broke his heart when he finally had to return it. Noah and Nathan still giggle about the illustrations and Officer Buckle's safety tips. It was reading Officer Buckle that convinced Nathan that he wanted to be able to read for himself. Hopefully, we'll be able to buy this one eventually.

Emma Bean (Jean Van Leeuwen)-about a stuffed bunny and her girl. We just borrowed this one from the library yesterday. I read it to Noah and A Bunny this morning. By the last page, I could hardly read for the tears in my eyes. This is definitely one of the sweetest childrens' books ever and a must-read for anyone whose little one has ever had a best friend made of cloth.

A Hat for Minerva Louise (Janet Morgan Stoeke)-Minerva Louise is a chicken. Her take on the world is hilarious. Very simple, not too long, funny illustrations, and just right for children without long attention spans. Rosie loves Minerva Louise, and we can't wait for Grandma's new batch of spring chicks to hatch so that we can name one of them Minerva Louise.

A Pocketful of Cricket (Rebecca Caudill)-Set in Appalachia, this is a very warmly written story, very simple, but the author has a beautiful way with words. Having read it, it obviously deserved the Caldecott Honor bestowed on it. Noah loves this one, and Nathan did, too. Now, they are excited for summer so that we can visit Grandpa's farm to hear what cicadas sound like.

My Great-Aunt Arizona (Gloria Houston)-A biography written by the subjects' great-niece. This book honors a lady who overcame the hardships of growing up in the Appalachian mountains to become a school teacher and then returned to the mountains, where she taught and inspired children for 57 years. The boys liked this one, but I think that I enjoyed it more than anyone else. The illustrations are beautifully done.

Welcome With Love (Jenni Overend)-Nathan has been asking about what it was like when he was born, so I borrowed this book from the library. Last night after his birthday supper was done, I sat down and read it to him. This is a great book that describes a homebirth through a young boys' eyes. Be forewarned, this book does show a birth in full (but still tasteful) detail. Noah, Nathan, and Rosie were in awe. Gareth was a little pale-obviously his memories of our homebirth are centered around the harder, messier aspects! For those who have experienced the beauty of a homebirth, this book is a must-read. And, it was a gentle introduction to "where babies come from and how they get here", which is a current topic of interest for Noah.

Goodnight, Gorilla (Peggy Rathmann)-This is a picture book. Not very many words, but hilarious illustrations. Nathan and Rosie love it.

Hope that this will inspire you with some great new stories to share with your munchkins (or just enjoy yourself).

By the way, for those longer books, I am LOVING books on CD. Noah is currently listening to Johnny Tremain and Hank the Cowdog, Nathan and Rosie are listening to Frog and Toad Are Friends, Gareth is listening to the Chronicles of Narnia series, and I am currently re-listening to Les Miserables. They're a life-saver for the days when I can't sit down or stop to read, and getting in the van to go somewhere is always a great excuse for a new book.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Happy Birthday, Nathan

Happy Birthday to the world's cuddliest baby.
(And the only one I've ever met who was born so chunky that his cheeks completely supported his neck while they rested on his shoulders!) Happy Birthday to the little man whose cheeky smile stole my heart in an instant,
and whose love for messes never ceases to surprise/disgust/amuse me.

Happy Birthday to the little boy who always has loved to make people smile. Happy Birthday to the world's best little brother.

Happy Birthday to the cutest little goofball

and bestest little cowboy around.

Happy Birthday to Inky's best friend.
Happy Birthday to one (of the two) handsomest little men I know
(even in heels and a tiara)!
Happy Birthday, Nathan!

I love you,


Wednesday, March 10, 2010


Thinking that I need to change the name of the blog. It no longer feels like I have many mini munchkins at my house. At least 85-90% of the time, it feels quite manageable. Now, that other 10-15, well, not so much. And, those days keep me grounded, aware of my own weakness and sin nature and how reliant I am on my Heavenly Father.

Thinking about how we'll know when it's the right time to add another munchkin to the mix. (Did I mention that on Valentine's Day Gareth surprised me by talking about when we adopt again and what we needed in order to be ready for an infant? Then, he really surprised me by mentioning it in Sunday School as a prayer request.)

Thinking that I must be (at least a little) insane to consider a new baby.....but certain that I want to.

Thinking about how Rosie will cope with a new addition to the family (she is the one who asks for a baby in our family most often) and wondering what is the perfect length of time to wait before we start the paperwork pregnancy again.

Thinking that adding number 4 really will give people reason to "pigeon hole" me. Not only am I a homeschooler, I'm one of those "nut job" homeschoolers with a million kids! :) (Mind you, I never set out to be a homeschooler or to have a million kids, it's just kind of happened as God has led us step by step along the way. I don't know what the future holds or how many more children it holds, but I know that I love my life and my family and am content to wait and see what God has planned for us.)

Thinking about how much I love to watch Gareth cuddling a baby. A dear friend of mine recently had her 3rd, and I didn't get much cuddle time in with her this last Connection Sunday, because Gareth came over and "stole" her from me and spent the rest of the evening snuggling with her.

Thinking that I'm so glad that I can trust the Lord to order our steps and know that we don't have to make these decisions on our own.

P.S. If I do ever manage to end up with a million kids and we're still homeschooling, then I will consider myself to be in good company. I've gotten to know a couple of those "nut job" families over the last year, and they are raising some amazingly great kids!

P.S.S. How does "Life with the Not So Many Not So Mini Munchkins" sound?

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

First Grade Field Trip

One of the families in our homeschool group organizes trips to the Creation Museum. When I heard about the trip scheduled for this Spring and the great price they were able to offer, I wanted to take Noah. He's done so well in school this year, and I thought it would be neat to be able to take each one of the kids on a special field trip in 1st grade for some fun and one-on-one time. Gareth agreed, so I happily signed us up.

Noah spent February alternating between excitement about a "3-day date" with Mommy and tears because we weren't taking Daddy and Nathan and Rosie along. But, when we got down to the actual week of the trip, he was just sooo excited. He happily spent the last week doing extra jobs to earn spending money for his trip.

We met our bus EARLY last Thursday morning and headed out. We made it out of Oklahoma just fine. Unfortunately, about 3 hours in one of the other youngsters' stomachs revolted against the huge quantities of sugar he had ingested and he threw up EVERYWHERE. Not so great, but thankfully, generous quantities of Clorox Wipes, papertowels, and Lysol made the smell bearable, and we carried on into Missouri. We had a short break for lunch (McDonald's-blech!) and then carried on into St. Louis, where we had a stop at the Arch.
I was very grateful that Noah was content to stand at the bottom of the arch
and just enjoy looking up, instead of riding to the top. (I have been to the top of the Arch before and I did survive, but I definitely do not feel the need to do it again!!! Completely irrelevant to the topic at hand, but I wonder whether its' my advancing years or the addition of children for which I am responsible that has made me so aware of my own frailty and much more cautious than I used to be?)
Anyhow, we happily wandered under the arch and spent a happy afternoon touring the Museum of Westward Expansion. Noah loves this period of American history, and we have just finished reading all of Laura Ingalls Wilders' Little House books, so this was a great stop for us.

After we had finished the museum, we visited the shop set up like an 1800's mercantile and treated ourselves to a piece of stick candy. Then, while visiting the gift shop, Noah found a compass. He's wanted one for ages, so he used part of his spending money.
As we settled back on to the bus, he unwrapped his stick candy, leaned over for a hug, and told me he must be the most spoilt boy in the whole world to have McDonalds, a piece of candy, and a compass. Bless him-how I love this boy.
We passed the afternoon travelling through Illinois, visiting with friends, playing Hangman, and watching the compass. Noah's AWANA leader and his family were also on the bus, and so Noah was thrilled to have time to spend with "Mr. Shaun" who was very kind to Noah and spent time teaching him how to use the compass and talking to him about how to tell your direction when out in the woods.
After another very quick stop in Indiana for supper (McDonald's again-double blech!!!!!), it was back onto the bus. We didn't make our hotel until after 9:30. Noah was a real trooper. I think he did better than I did on the way over, but we were both glad to finally see our hotel. We quickly unpacked, Noah had a bubble bath, and then settled into bed for 20 minutes of Animal Planet tv before passing out.
The next morning, it was up bright and early to shower and get ready to head out for the day.
We had breakfast at the hotel and then loaded back onto the bus for the hours' drive into Kentucky.
We were at the Museum by 9:30, and I was looking forward to a day of walking and not having to sit!
The entrance hall was great. Noah was absolutely fascinated by the animatronic dinosaurs. One of the displays at the Museum of Westward Expansion had been down for maintenance, so I had been able to show him how they make the exhibits move, but he was still a little intimidated by the moving dinosaurs!
Here are some of our favorite moments from the day:
Touching a REAL fossil (notice that A Bunny had to touch it, too).

Seeing fossilized dinosaur eggs

Looking at the absolutely fabulous displays-Everything was so well done and the displays were great.
(Indeed, they were so lifelike that I had a much more difficult time getting Noah to stand beside the dinosaurs than I did getting him beside the other animals!)
Apart from the animatronics, Noah's favorite part was visiting the scale model of Noah's ark.

And, of course, standing beside the great hero of the faith that he was named for.
We had a break for a cup of tea and a cookie, and then it was on to the dinosaur hall. Just look at this big guy! We got to visit with the man who sculpted the dinosaurs for the museum, and he says it took 2 years to make this one!

This one was so cute, we thought it looked like it could have been a pet.

Dinosaur ride anyone?
In all seriousness, though, the museum was fantastic. Not just that the displays were well done and entertaining, but it was good to learn more about the evidence that is out there that supports the Biblical narration of Creation. Very thought-provoking stuff.
We had a nice lunch, and then headed outside to walk around and to visit the Petting Zoo. Noah had a great time feeding the animals (except for the camel which he insisted that I feed instead) and reading about the amazing designs that God has given each of the animals to enable them to live in their various environments.

Noah's favorite animal was, of course, a very fluffy bunny. Unfortunately, because the weather was quite cool, it was in an indoor enclosure behind plexi-glass that didn't allow us to get a good picture. But, his second favorite animal was this:
There's just something fun about being able to say "zorse" and "zonkey", so we spent a lot of time visiting the zorses and the zonkey.
Not all of the animals were quite so thrilled at being looked at.

We were at the Museum until 5:00 and then headed back to the hotel. After a quick supper of pizza, Noah and I grabbed swimsuits and headed for the pool. We swam for an hour and then headed up to shower off and catch a half-hour of Animal Planet before passing out.
Noah fell in love with hotel life. He has decided that he might like to live in a hotel someday, what with the tv watching while in bed, having someone to make the bed for you, the indoor swimming, and wandering downstairs for a buffet breakfast every morning!
It was up bright and early the next morning for a quick breakfast and then to pack up and load ourselves back on the bus. We were on the road by 8:30 and didn't make it back into Tulsa until after 9:30. It was a LONG day, but there was plenty of good conversation with fellow homeschooling Moms, and Noah finally stretched out and napped which helped him to pass the time.
We had a great time, and I would highly recommend a visit to the Creation Museum. Noah said that it was the favorite thing he's ever done, and I can't wait for Nathan to be ready for a 1st grade field trip. (I'm not sure I'll travel by bus, though!)