Tuesday, April 26, 2011

(Re) Discover Chattanooga - TN Aquarium

Yesterday was World Penguin Day, so I figured it was appropriate to finally write about my Birthday Trip to the Tennessee Aquarium.

The first thing you need to know about the Aquarium, is its not one aquarium, its two. The first building focuses on freshwater marine life, and is made up of exhibits on each floor & large tanks that are as the full height of the building. As you walk between exhibits, you descend into the 'depths of the tanks' and get to see which fish live near the top, bottom etc. Some of the highlights include river otters, a makeshift swamp, one of the largest catfish you'll ever see, and an impressive sea horse exhibit.

But What About The Penguins?

The Penguins are in the second building. This building is a little smaller, and focuses on salt water marine life. If you're looking for sharks and sting rays, you'll find them here. You start in a butterfly garden, with a TON of butterflies hanging out. They've got an incubator room you can look in, bc lets face it, LOTS of school kids come through, and you have to see all stages of butterfly life.

After the butterflies, you walk into the penguin room. The penguins are behind glass, which is a little disappointing, but when you compare a TN summer to Antarctica, you have to understand why the climate control is necessary. I was also a little disappointed in the exhibit itself. Compared to the River Otter exhibit, its small and barren...but again, probably not unlike an iceberg. What is not disappointing is the penguins themselves. They are So Freaking Cute! Watching them waddle and hop around is hysterical, and watching them swim is pretty cool. They are all banded on their wings, and the color code is posted, so you know you're laughing at "Biscuit." I must confess I have bookmarked the Penguin Webcam on my work computer, and pretty much leave it running all day long. They're that cute. They're nesting right now (they use rocks to build their nests) so its fun to see them fuss over the rocks, and hop around over the nests.

The other cool thing in this building is the jelly fish exhibit. There are so many different colors and sizes, and they're all so graceful. This is a part of the aquarium I could stay for hours.

Membership definitely worth it :)

Tennessee Aquarium
One Broad Street, Chattanooga TN, 37402
phone: 800-262-0695
Ticket Information
Hours of Operation: First admittance to the Aquarium is at 10 a.m. with last admittance at 6 p.m. Eastern Time. The Aquarium closes at 8 p.m. (Plan for at least 2 hours for your visit)

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** Photos pulled from the Tennessee Aquarium Website **

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Mini-Garden Update

This is a mini update about my mini garden. My bulbs are coming up! I planted some Ranunculus Bulbs about 3 weeks ago, and almost all of them have poked up out of the dirt. I've got 18 bulbs in 3 pots going right now, which should be a nice addition to my new patio in a few weeks! The goal is to have them look something like this in another month or so :)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

rose window

My signature window at Backstreets is up! I have been building stained glass windows at Backstreets for the past 5 years, and this is number window # 57, and my way of signing the project. I'm not finished building windows for Backstreets, but since I am more of an "Artist in Absentee" than Artist in Residence, the time was right to put my name on it.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Spring 2011

This spring my gardening effort is going to be the smallest in recent memory, I've got a move scheduled for 3 weeks from now with only a patio for gardening, and this winter I have another move planned. So there's not a lot of time or space to get many plants established before I move to an area that could potentially have a completely different sun/shade combination.

I couldn't resist starting a few pots, and the first of my ranunculus bulbs are starting to come up! I'm excited about these b.c they should make great cut flowers, and I can dry the bulbs when I move, and replant next spring. I'm trying to stick to a strict budget this summer, so having flowers will be a nice way to make things look 'pretty' without having to spend any money.

The only other thing I have planted so far is moss. This is an inside joke with my mom. I love moss. I think its pretty. Moss is soft, stays green all year, and you don't have to mow it. I don't understand why my dad pulled up all the perfectly good moss in the back yard to plant grass...and cut down trees so the grass would get more sun...and install irrigation so the grass would get even watering. A lot of work, when the backyard was already green. So mom bought me flowering moss. I planted this, and also some moss left over from table decorations from my sisters wedding. Who knows, maybe this is the beginning of my future front yard, haha.

Have a good week everybody!!
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