A Whale of a Time

Penguins. Jellyfish. Stingrays. Sharks. Turtles. Parrots. Butterflies. Piranhas.

These are just a few of the 10,000 wondrous creatures Hudson saw at the Tennessee Aquarium. We began our visit with the Ocean Journey. Despite hoards of people, we were pleasantly surprised with the interactions Hudson was able to make with the animals. He got up close and personal with some Southern Stingrays, as Daddy dipped his own hand into the tank to feel the soft back of the slick fish, and he was happily surrounded by beautiful butterflies in the aquarium's butterfly garden. We got multiple views of the shark habitat, and Hudson watched intently as the scary shark passed closely by the glass. When we entered into the jellyfish exhibit, Hudson seemed mystified by their striking colors and the entrancing movements they made in the water. But his favorite part of the Ocean Journey seemed to be the penguins. He watched them waddle and swim for quite a long time.

After we had adequately explored the Ocean, we walked over to the River Journey. We were not quite as impressed with this older portion of the Aquarium, as the layout wasn't very favorable for large groups of people. We were unable to see the scuba diver interact with the Blue Catfish because the crowd was so thick they blocked the viewing glass. We had a hard time pushing the stroller through the narrow walkways packed with people, and we were especially unhappy that the River Otters were not present in the Otter Habitat. But, Hudson did enjoy seeing the alligators and turtles that call the river their home. We ended our visit to the Aquarium with a IMAX movie about the ocean, which Hudson slept through despite the looming six-story screen and booming state of the art sound system.

Of course the best part of any vacation is the sojourn through the souvenir shop. After browsing through the many fishy gifts, Will and I held up a few varieties of stuffed animals so that Hudson could choose the one he liked most. He passed up the big shark and the soft turtle in favorite of a precious knit penguin....solidifying the fact that his favorite part of the day at the aquarium was his encounter with the little short guys in tuxedos.

{Words of Wisdom on the way to the Aquarium}

{Stopping by the Moon Pie General Store}

{Eat Mo' Pie}

{"Can I have a Moon Pie?"}

{delicious Sunkist in a glass bottle}

{Will's lemon moon pie and glass bottle RC Cola were soo good he couldn't even open his eyes.}

{Hello Aquarium!}

{"Oooh Stingrays!"}

{swimming Stingray}

{"I want to touch it!"}

{"I like fish!"}

{"Ok, what's next?"}

{Checking out the Butterfly Garden}

{Fish are Fun}

{Penguin Encounter}

{Hudson's favorite}

{watching the action in the penguin habitat}

{looking for sharks...}

{....found one!}

{stuck in the shark cage!}

{feeling the coral}

{pretty colors}


{hanging out by the fish tank}

{fish up high...fish all around.}

{who needs fish when there are mirrors to look into?}

{too many people. waiting for the boys outside the alligator exhibit}

{"Hey! Let me in there! I like to swim, too!"}

{funny little turtle}

{loving his new penguin friend}

{Will thought it would be funny for me to push Hudson up this crazy sloping sidewalk. Look at those sweet little legs popping out of the stroller.}

{time to leave....}

{....Hudson & penguin are tired.}

{It's been a long day....}

{....and our feet need a rest.}


Jeannie said...

Ashley what good pictures! I like your hat, looks so cute. Hudson is such a happy baby.

abehel said...

I think the aquarium was a hit with Hudson.And it appears the moon pie store was the favorite attraction for Will. Great pictures Ashley!

Kellie Belue Jordan said...

you seriously need to go into photography if you arent already. You have the best pics!

Summer T said...

that is the best turtle picture :)
i can't believe Hudson passed up a turtle... but at least it was for a penguin. they are cute!