Monday, 9 December 2013

Family time (a day off with the kids)

The kids and I took a day off the other day. A day off school, a day off work, a day offline.

Mid-December, several blustery storms and snowfalls into our Canadian winter and already well into our wind-up toward the Christmas holidays we were hit with a forecast of sun and a balmy sixteen degrees. It's too bad it's a school day, I thought. Wait - why? I called the school, told them I was keeping the kids home for a family day, tossed the stroller in the trunk and headed down to the zoo for the day. The kids were so excited. I was so excited.
baboons, zoo, Toronto Zoo, kids, animals
Playing with the baboons

We had the absolute best day ever, my boys and I.

The zoo is one of our favourite places on earth, our go-to family field trip destination all year round. In the winter we have the place practically to ourselves and the animals are much friskier and friendlier than under the blazing sun and stifling heat of a summer afternoon.

We spent the entire day there, walking and talking and enjoying the sunshine and the animals and each other. The day was so beautiful that some of our favourite animals - usually seen curled up in a corner of their habitat snoozing - came right out to play with us.

panda, bear, zoo, Toronto Zoo, animals
But what made the day so special was that it was unexpected, a treat, a special occasion for no special reason other than that we wanted to enjoy a day together in the beautiful weather. It's these memories that will last the rest of our lives.