Tuesday, October 30, 2007


Happy Halloween everyone! Little Peter is a pumpkin for Halloween:

New Orleans has the Halloween spirit, so we took Peter to some of the scary houses in our neighborhood (not at night though, that would be too scary). This spooky spot is where my Grandma lived when she attended Tulane a few years back:

This one is real scary:

Peter waiting for the great pumpkin:

I am not much of a poet, but I am going to share my pumpkin poem with you. Amanda once (5 years ago) told me she was playing with her preschool kids, and they were learning about PeterPeter, who lived in a pumpkin (I think he was a little Fisher-Price toy). For some reason, writing a poem about that sounded better to me than doing math homework, so I took an hour off and wrote this. It was a moment of inspiration. I know it is a little sappy at the end, and maybe I should switch the characters' parts so as to not follow traditional gender roles. But this is just how it came out, and I won't apologize for it. Enjoy!

Peter Peter the pumpkin farmer
Always knew that he'd stay warmer
Buried in the heart of a big orange gourd
So into his pumpkin a hole he bored

When he arrived inside to his surprise
He found he was met by two big brown eyes
Sally Sally the girl next door
Was already there sitting down on the floor

"Now Sally Sally" Peter Peter said
"How come you're in my pumpkin bed?
I worked all year to grow this place
I'd rather not fill it with your ugly face."

But Sally Sally was a bright young girl
(whose face was quite pretty as everyone knew)
She had seen the farmer boy's stubborn ways
And had been planning this moment for days and days

"Peter Peter" she cried in her saddest voice
"You can't turn me out, you can't make that choice
The winter storm is so cold it's a freeze
And besides I've made all these pumpkin seeds."

Pumpkin seeds are a farmer's delight
And Peter Peter's mouth watered at the sight
But a stubborn farm boy is not easily swayed
"Go home" he said to the poor girl's dismay.

"But oh! Peter Peter, take a look around.
I've picked all the pumpkin guts up off the ground.
Your warm hideaway is now nice and neat.
Come in. Sit down. Put up your feet."

"I like a clean pumpkin," the startled boy thought
"And pumpkin guts quickly can stink up and rot."
But the meanness in him was too strong for that
"I like to be alone. Can't you see that?"

"Say, Peter Peter. An idea's in my head.
We've got a whole pumpkin. Let's make pumpkin bread.
It's warm and soft and sweet and yummy.
And I'll go away after we fill our tummies."

Now Peter Peter was caught in a trap.
He loves pumpkin bread (he's not a sap).
So he yielded but groaned and complained for an hour
But he noticed throughout how her hair smelled like flowers.

He noticed also that she smiled quite often
And he wondered why he didn't smile more.
Then the groaning grew less - the tone began to soften
Peter Peter felt something he hadn't known before.

The bread was as delicious as fresh bread can be
It was warm and spicy and made them feel great
Sally Sally got up and said, "Well, you're free."
She picked up her things and made for the gate.

Peter Peter felt sad as he saw her depart
And the storm outside really made him feel blue.
"Sally Sally!" he cried. To the the gate he did dart.
"It's warm here with one, but it'd be warmer with two."

Peter Peter and Sally Sally waited out the cold storm.
They talked and they shared and they laughed and they played.
And inside his heart Peter Peter did feel warm
As he realized that he'd learned something special that day.


Thursday, October 25, 2007

Zoo Part Two (it rhymes!)

After the pampas, you enter the Jaguar Jungle. It is built around old Mayan ruins:

Here we learned how to tell the difference between jaguars and leopards. Both have spots. And both have spots inside of their spots. But leopards have more spots inside their spots than jaguars have. Or was it the other way around? I can't remember.

Time for gator country. These guys look bigger in life than in blog.

Time for the surprise of the day - they keep this black bear in with the gators. We caught him taking a bath:

Some family of black bears got in a fight thousands of years ago and split up. Half of them headed for the hills of Wyoming, and the poor other half headed for the swamps of Louisiana. They are now our state mammal.

I'm not sure, but I think our state swamp rat must be the nutria. They keep these guys suspiciously close to the gator pond.

After stopping to spit on the cougars, Peter and I caught up to Amanda, who was trying to figure out how many ants it would take to fill the belly of a giant anteater:

Unlike those sad gorillas (who might just need a good book?), I don't mind sharing a few genes with these fellows:

Don't touch!

And, we saw some of these:

Louisiana is the Pelican State:

We skipped a third of the zoo to save for some future visit. Chiao!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Lions, Tigers, and Bears (well, at least bears)

We took Pete to the zoo last week. The Audubon Zoo is very nice. Everything is clean and fun, and the gorillas are the only animals that look sad. They always look sad in zoos. I wonder if they look sad in the wild.

We started by going to a show. It featured many superheroes named after animals. Here's Spiderman with a tarantula. They also had a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, Ratman, The Chicken King, and Captain Conservation.

We were on the edge of our seats:

From there, we went to the fountain:

It was a nice day, but they had the mist-machines on for cool down just in case

We passed a carousel but decided Peter was still too young.

We have an Australian Aviary at our zoo:

Look at the baby elephant! Aw.

Amanda with the famingos:

In Peru, they have llamas, alpacas, vicunas, and guanacos. Each is useful and beautiful, except the guanaco, which gets made fun of a lot. Guanaco is Peruvian slang for ugly. Here they are:

I had never seen so many turtles:

This one looks like he's been around for a while:

Pete was impressed:

They had a pampas section complete with capybaras, but the capybaras came out blurry, and all I got was this lousy rhea:

Uh, oh. It's quitting time. I think I'll save the rest of the zoo for tomorrow. Come back and see the bear, the rhino, the pelican, and more photos of Pete being super amazing fun.

Bye for now:

Friday, October 12, 2007

Fall is Swingin'!

In NOLA you don't really have 4 seasons, so Pete and I decorated our porch for Fall.

Peter loves to sit on the porch and watch the cars go by and see the squirrels play.

Pete looks really good on the porch swing, take a look!

Tut tut it looks like rain.

A happy fall to y'all!!!

Come and visit us soon:)