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Flamingo Fever

A few weeks ago, we hit the local zoo for
the first time this season. Not far from the entrance of the park
is the flamingo exhibit, and you can hang over a bridge or railing
and watch the birds. Cora, especially, loved seeing the flamingos
and spent quite a lot of time studying them, even asking as we left
to stop and stare again.

I watched the girls play in the gift shop at the end of the day and
noticed Cora once again gravitated towards flamingos, so I sneaked
back in and picked up a small stuffed flamingo for Cora’s May
birthday. What can I say – I plan ahead.

Then Saturday, the girls went to the local
aquarium and again encountered the flamingos. Our aquarium has a
great sort of rain forest and exotic bird display in addition to
the fish stuff, and flamingos were top priority with both girls
this time. Brian and Gamma went while I was off teaching, and when
they came home Maddie had a flamingo puppet and Cora had –
you guessed it – the same stuffed flamingo I’d picked
up for her birthday.

Double gifts aside, both girls seem to be really interested in the
pink birds. Why, specifically, I can’t say – perhaps
the color (especially with Maddie) but I think more than that. The
way they move, or seem so exotic?

Maddie spent most of Saturday begging me to make a flamingo costume
for her dress-up, and I finally caved on Sunday and got the girls
dressed like flamingos. They both put on their pink tights and pink
leotards, and we topped it off with angel wings – because
flamingos have wings, you know – and I even scrounged up a
few pink feathers from an old craft project for their hair. The
result, if I do say so myself, was entrancing, and we danced around
the room pretending to be flamingos picking our way daintily
through the water.

Maddie used her flamingo puppet often over the weekend, but every
chance she got she “borrowed” Cora’s plush toy
for herself. So I’m guessing the stuffed flamingo I bought at
the zoo will still be a birthday present – just a June one
for Maddie instead.

I’m sure the flamingo fever will die eventually, but I do
enjoy watching the girls try to walk and “flute” and
eat like a flamingo. Maddie nearly broke down Sunday afternoon when
I explained that I couldn’t get her knees to go backwards
like a flamingo – she’s very much the purist in her
artistic interpretations.

Heaven help me if their infatuation moves to, say, a bat or
three-toed sloth.


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