Christmas at the Zoo



While scrolling Facebook, I saw a Fowl Language comic that depicted "the two stages of winter." The comic described December as a "magical wonderland of lights," and the rest of the season as "a cold, gray, bucket of suck."

Said bucket of suck is currently dumping snow, ice, and hatred upon the streets of Indianapolis, and has been since yesterday. Last night, while carrying the Christmas tree back out to the garageand nearly dropping an ovary in the processI slipped on the ice. By desperately flailing my arms in a windmill-like fashion, I managed to stay upright untilWham! My feet flew up and my back hit the ground. I lay there for several moments, regaining my breath and cursing the snow, ice, and hatred that bled through my coat and jeans. My fall was similar to those seen in Home Alone, except in my version of the beloved classic, there are less tarantulas and plenty of toothbrushes approved by the American Dental Association.

Okay, so, January has been a little unpleasant so far. We've had, I believe, just two days of clear skies since the month started. (Because nothing says "Happy New Year" like gloom, doom, and seasonal affective disorder.) But December? I'll have to agree with the comic; it was pretty magical.

A few days after Christmas, I invited friends Lizzy and Raina to "Christmas at the Zoo," an annual event held at the Indianapolis Zoo. According to the zoo's website, the Indianapolis Zoo was the first zoo in the United States to feature a holiday lights event. (The zoo started the event in 1967, just three years after it opened.) Since I had acquired a few free passes, I thought it would be fun to head across the river and admire the twinkling glow of lights.

It was cold that night, too, and windy. Fourteen degrees, tops. We were bundled in hats, scarves, and gloves, and, beneath our jeans, we wore leggings and two pairs of socks. Oh, it was cold. It was cold and crisp and my nose ran and my fingertips went numb and I didn't care because the zoo was beautiful. It twinkled and sparkled and flashed, and we laughed at the playfulness of the penguins and sea lions. We spied on sleeping orangutans. We paused at a light display that resembled a hot dog stand and wondered, "Why? Why a hot dog stand?" ("Why not a hot dog stand?") We allowed our frozen toes to thaw in the conservatory and said, repeatedly, "It's so stunning! Everything is so amazing!" And we reveled, childlike, in the magic of it all.
















2014 Ornament Swap Showcase

Fa la la la la la la la la. This year, more than eighty individuals (including my mom) participated in the ornament swap. Swappers from six countries--Australia, Canada, Romania, Spain, the U.K., and the States--participated, and twenty-two of the fifty U.S. states (including Alaska) were represented! I wish to extend an enormous thank you to everyone who traded ornaments. Thank you for taking part in something that encourages networking and holiday joy. I hope that everyone enjoyed the experience, and I hope to "see you" in a future swap! 

Merry holidays, and the happiest of new years! 

from Sarah to Megan



from Megan to Sarah


 from Cassy to Charlotte


from Charlotte to Cassy



from Shona to Tegan


 from Emily to Juj




from Juj to Emily


 from Sarah to Jackie


from Jackie to Sarah


 from Rose to Courtney


from Courtney to Rose


from Lisa to Brandi


 from Amy to Raina


from Anabel to Meagan



from Meagan to Anabel



from Lynette to Anca


 from Anca to Lynette


 from Arielle to Wendy



from Wendy to Arielle


from Bridget to Blaire


 from Chloe to Jenn


 from Connie to Cassandra


 from Corey to Sacha



from Sacha to Corey



from Lisette to Deborah


from Deborah to Lisette


 from Haley to Abby


from Ioana to Danielle

 from Danielle to Ioana


 from Joanne to Nicole



from Nicole to Joanne


 from Karm to Alexandria


 from Keri to Chris


from Lori to Faisal


 from Megan to Rachel


from Megan to Melissa



from Melissa to Megan


 from Megan to Sharon



from Sharon to Megan


from Meghan to Shannah 


from Michelle to Neltje


from Neltje to Michelle


 from Rachael to Margherita



from Margherita to Rachael


from Rachel to Megan



from Lucy to Rhianne


 from Rhianne to Lucy


from Shannah to Meghan


 from Shary to Terri


 from Terri to Shary


 from Tia to Heidi


 from Victoria to Ayla


from Ayla to Victoria


 from Zoë to Heidi



from Heidi to Zoë


 from Jo to Lindsey



from Lindsey to Jo



from Elissa to Michelle


from Michelle to Elissa



from Blaire to Dawn



from Dawn to Blaire


 from Jessica to Dawn


 from Dawn to Jessica
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