Mike has been itching to take Annie to the Zoo for ages. I finally committed to a date, but then I was sick so it had to be canceled. Yesterday morning he was like, “Feel like going to the Zoo today?” and I must have been feverish because I said yes. Having barely left the house for weeks, I’d forgotten it was now summer. I even brought a wrap with me. I realized my error when we pulled into the Los Angeles Zoo parking lot at 11am and it was already 82 degrees.


The Zoo sells hats and sunscreen! Very expensive hats and sunscreen.

I didn’t know how Annabel was going to do at the Zoo. On the one hand, she loves naming the animals in her books (Doggie! Doggie! Cow! DOGGIE! Piiiiiiiig!). On the other hand, she’s seventeen months old going on seventeen years. Girl has a ‘tude.

they see me rollin'

Gramma and Bampa met us at the Zoo, which was awesome. Annie prefers a large entourage. We left her in the stroller to start, which was a good idea because the first thing we came upon was Reggie the Alligator. Annie looked at Reggie and screamed. Reggie is famous in LA because some dummy had him as a pet, then LET HIM GO IN A PARK LAKE when he got too big. I think it took about two years for Reggie to be captured. I hope we all learned a valuable lesson.

Next we came upon a variety of birds. Annie likes birds that don’t make noise, like this collection of lawn ornaments:

lawn ornaments

Across the way were black neck swans, swimming with their five-day-old baby.

Black Neck Swans

I personally don’t think newborns should be allowed in the water.

This meerkat is the first thing Annabel called a DOGGIE!


Annie got antsy in the stroller after about thirty minutes, so we let her wander. Then we got to this exhibit and she was yelling “UPPA UPPA UUUUUUP!” at me the second she laid eyes on this homey:

digging for gold

I could have watched him pick his nose all day long, but we had to move on.

polka dots

The Zebra was the second thing Annie called a DOGGIE! She loved the Zebras.

Looking at the zebra DOGGIE!

This ram gave me the stink eye:

this ram gave me the stink eye

When we came upon the elephants, I made the mistake of telling Annie it was taking a bath. She kept yelling “Bat! Bat!” That is Annie-speak for “OMG I GET TO TAKE A BATH!” She was confused. My bad.

bath time is fun time

Annie ran off looking for a bath and led us to the giraffes. I am absolutely convinced Oprah was on the other side of this fence. What else would they be looking at so intently?

watching Oprah

I learned that Giraffes are tall drinks of water with strange tongues:


Annie called this Giraffe “DOGGIE!”

At that point my body was like, “Yo, Heather. WTF is going on up in here? It’s like 800 degrees, you only had applesauce and toast for breakfast, and you ate half of Annie’s ice cream cone. You best be drinking some water or there will be another stomach riot.” I hate it when my body gets all bossy.

As we walked out, I passed this guy. I couldn’t stop looking at him.

my buddy

I love that most of the people at Zoos are little kids, so I can just lean right over their tiny bodies to get closer to things. So I leaned in toward this guy, and zoomed in:


We locked eyes and it was intense, yo. Guy looked at me as if to say, “you think you’re having a bad day?

I asked Mike if we could bring him home and he said no. Such a meanie.

But me and Guy, we’re besties now. Don’t be sad, Guy. I’ll come visit you.

Don't be sad, Guy. I'll be back.

As we walked away from him, Annabel said, “Bye monkey baby!”

She’s such a genius.