Our friend Jennifer was turning the big 4-0, and she wanted to do something fun to celebrate–something along the lines of zip-lining. Oooh, count me IN!
So she and her husband Joey and the four of us headed to John Ball Zoo in Grand Rapids to try out their zip line and rope course.
When we arrived, we spotted the rope course.
Not in the least bit intimidating…
We decided to check out some animals before venturing out to the rope course.
Pelicans were the first exhibit.
Now those beaks are intimidating!
Annie and Katie, checking out the pelicans.
Note my hand in the left corner reaching to pull out the wedgie in Annie’s shorts. Also note that it is not a good idea to try to pull out one’s wedgie when one is looking at long-beaked birds. Sorry ’bout that, Annie.
Moving on (wedgie-free now)…
We came across this fun riddle:
Hmm… could the answer be years, maybe?
The girls got to barrel ride:
And feed some budgies–which looked like parakeets to me.
Mike and I went inside the budgie cage with the girls while Jennifer and Joey stood outside the cage to avoid flapping wings and the potential of wearing bird poop on your shoulder. Smart.
Mike was able to charm a budgie onto his feeding stick. Who knew he was such a bird whisperer?
Then we came upon the answer to the riddle:
Ah, darkness. Of course. How many of you guessed that?
Then it was… drum roll please… ZIP-LINE time!
Katie and Annie decided not to try the zip-line, so Mike and Joey got suited up while Jennifer and I stayed with the girls and waited our turn.
(The Before picture… just in case.)
Mike went first…
And off he goes…!
Apparently he made it to the other side, and just in time to take a picture of Joey coming in behind him:
Whew, so glad they survived!
Now for the ladies’ turn!
Needless to say, we both made it to the other side too! I won’t mention that Jennifer ended up landing on her rear–but it couldn’t be helped because her harness had her turned backwards.
Zip-line, check! And now for the rope course.
Annie had already decided she wasn’t doing either the zip-line or rope course, but then she changed her mind and agreed to do the ropes after she (barely) met the height requirement.
Admittedly, I was proud of her, but also scared for her. Those ropes did not look kid-friendly at all!!
Mike and Joey decided to sit this one out (wimps), so we four gals got suited up.
Katie, bravely walking across a narrow beam:
Annie made it across with the helping hand of a ropes worker (bless his heart for stilling my racing heart! It was nerve-wracking watching Annie attempt the first rope–but she did it all without slipping or falling once! Thank God!)
After about 30 minutes on the ropes course, we were done and all still in one piece.
Katie decided she was ready to try the zip-line–much to our delight! Jennifer said she’d go again with Katie.
As Katie started to put her harness on, she began having second thoughts. “Oh, but look at your shirt–that’s what you are! BRAVE!” I told her.
High-fives for the brave girl!!
Adjusting her harness….
Onward and forward!
…. and we have lift-off!
After Katie made it to the other side (woo-hoo!), it was Jennifer’s turn–#2!
There she goes!
No rear end landing this time–she ended up on her feet perfectly!
Woo-hoo, what an adventure! Now we’re ready for the Grand Canyon zip-line!
Then we were HOT and ready for some AC. So it was into the Reptile building we went.
“Good thing there’s a glass wall there!” Annie commented, after reading about the Marine Toad. Yikes. Yes, a good thing indeed.
Then it was time for some humpy bumpy camel ridin’!
The girls really enjoyed their camel ride, even though “it makes your booty hurt!” Annie declared.
Hurt booties need a bench for sitting and resting. And what better bench than one that has a quote carved onto it from the book, The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein?
(Katie’s signing GIVE for The Giving Tree)
Such a neat bench!!
When all was zipped, roped, and cameled out, we headed for home–tired but happy after a fun-filled day! 🙂
Happy 40th, Jennifer!
Thanks for letting us celebrate with you!