Spending Time with My “Boos” at the Zoo!

At least five Woodys! Plenty of super heroes from Iron Man to Spider Man to Superman, the Incredibles and anyone else you can think of! Plenty of princesses, unicorns and even a family dressed as the characters from Wizard of Oz. No, this wasn’t a costume party but the absolutely fun Halloween event held annually at the Philadelphia Zoo: Boo at the Zoo!

This makes the sixth year that my daughter and I have attended and the second year that we’ve met up with our relatives for some “cousin” fun along with my mother. We arrived at 9am (The zoo opens at 9:30am but allowed members to enter as early a 8:30am), and while the day started off rather chilly, the weather was perfect as the day progressed. The sun was shining the entire time, and we were even able to unbutton our jackets as the light breeze blew. In between seeing the lions, tigers, giraffes and plenty other animals (who were all out and about today), Quinn and her cousins eagerly ran to the different stations to trick or treat for tasty sweets and did different crafts while admiring the costumes of the other children and adults in passing.

Spending time with my extended family, seeing the smiles on the girls’ faces, hearing their laughter and simply feeling their joy truly puts a smile on my face. If you’re looking for a fun and safe event for your child or children and live near Philadelphia, “Boo at the Zoo” is perfect! You get to dress up, get sweet treats, and do fun activities all while seeing animals.

All the best,


Scary Pancake Fun: Counting Candy Corns

Just about every Friday, my family goes to IHOP, one of my daughter’s favorite restaurants to have breakfast for dinner. This time of year, however, is extra special because the scary pancake face it added to the menu for Halloween. It comes with two miniature Oreo cookies for the eyes, a strawberry for the nose, candy corn for the teeth and whipped cream too.

A couple of weeks ago when the Scary Pancake appeared on the menu, my daughter was very excited to order it but when the pancake and its toppings to create the scary face arrived, Quinn looked intently at the picture then at the container with the candy corn. “Wait a minute! The picture shows seven candy corn and even has some left in the container on the side, but mine only came with five!” she exclaimed.

Ever since my daughter was a baby, she’s always been inquisitive and attentive. As she’s gotten older, I’ve notice how exacting and observant she is, and I love it! I asked, “What would you like to do? Do you want to inform the server?” She shook her head but then whispered to me as she saw him walk by, “Can you tell him please, Mommy?” Upon letting him know my five year old’s observation, he came back with about ten more candy corns, smiled and apologized to Quinn for not bring out the right amount. She was so happy. My husband then jokingly brought to her attention that she now had more than the picture was displaying. So she quickly gobbled up some of the candy corn and then said, “Now it’s the same amount as the picture!”

I love how there are so many opportunities in life for learning experiences. My daughter practiced her counting skills, used some critical thinking and even took the initiative to rectify an error in the amount of her candy corn.

All the best,


Halloween’s Over: Now, the “trick” is figuring out what to do with all of those treats!

2015-11-13 16.17.35Though my daughter is only two and a half, she fully understands the concept of Halloween and was eager to go trick or treating this year. We actually had a few different outings, Boo at the Zoo, Please Touch Museum’s monster mash and actual trick or treating throughout the neighborhood. She could barely contain her excitement saying, “Oh yeah, I love Halloween! Look at all this candy!” In that moment, I was torn because as much as I enjoyed seeing that smile on her face and hearing that joy in her voice, I just knew we were going to have a problem. Either she was going to want to eat it all in one sitting, or she would be throwing major fits if I did not permit her to eat “her” candy.

As a parent and health conscious person, I always offer Quinn healthy, yummy fruits and rarely let her eat candy, but that doesn’t stop her from wanting it and asking for a lollipop in her sweetest voice with those big brown eyes, hoping to persuade me. Interestingly, Quinn has not been all that interested in eating the candy as much as she has been in sorting and counting it. Everyday since Halloween, she has asked, “Mommy, can I sort my candy please?” She especially likes sorting and counting how many lollipops or how many bags of Skittles she has (She’s never even had Skittles). With a handful of lollipops in her hand, she will ask, “Can you guess how many lollipops I have, Mommy?” Transferring them from one hand to the other, she proudly says, “I have, one, two, three, four, five, six lollipops!” I’ve even observed her sorting based on the colors of the candy wrappers. What a fun way to learn!

While I tend to not eat candy, this time of the year does bring out the “junk food junkie” in me, and as much as I try to resist, I do find myself taking a piece of candy here and there from Quinn’s bowl. With all of her counting and sorting, I have a feeling that she will eventually realize that some specific candies are missing. When she does, I will definitely have to fess up and let my candy accountant know that she’s caught me.

All the best,