Baby D loves sensory play and activities so we decided to go off on an underwater adventure, much to our delight Baby D even decided to stay awake for the duration of the visit! We managed to get there nice and early so although there are no child spaces we managed to get one of those really handy spaces on the edge next to the pavement that are really better than the actual child spaces! A wee bit off topic I know but it drives me mad, child spaces don’t need to be right at the door, they need to have enough space at the side of the car to safely extract a small person and place them in yet more wheels/sling/arms etc. It’s just so hard getting a baby and all their equipment out of the car safely when there is no space, especially when you are on your own.
Anyway first hurdle over nicely we managed to get in with our pre-booked tickets and we were off. It was nice and quiet so we had a good wander round with Baby D in the buggy to have a look at all the tanks up close without having to squirm and squeeze in to see.
We decided it would be fun to take Baby D to the amphibian talk with the plan of a quick exit if he got too loud or bored. As always Baby D never fails to surprise us, he listened to Chris our lovely animal expert intently the entire time, only taking his eyes off him briefly to stare at the snake he was holding as it wound round his arms, neck and body. Meanwhile Mummy D was having a small hernia being in the same room as a snake, I have held them but I still get slightly anxious being so near them, although the very knowledgable Chris did assure us snakes are far more scared of humans than humans need be of snakes!
The wee man then loved getting hands on in the shark classroom. He felt lots of different shells, rocks and lots of other interesting textures found underwater. We then wandered through the Amazon creatures. This area was fab for Baby D aside from the fact that the tanks had lots of interesting creatures and colours there was lots of replica forest (If you’ve been reading you will know Baby D loves trees!) and there was also lots of different lights and textures on the walls for him to feel.
Then it was on to the serious business of the ‘Underwater Safari’, down, down down to the deep blue sea for us three! Luckily it was still pretty early so we managed to get our buggy parked no problem and we were off. Needless to say Baby D was more excited at the prospect of getting out the buggy than he was the fish! Although once we got into the tunnel he absolutely loved it. Not one to be scared of anything he had a good shout at the sharks! It was amazing watching him take everything in and trying to touch the fish through the glass. The only difficulty was carrying Baby D, we cleverly left the sling in the buggy so it was a continuous swap between Mummy and Daddy of a very heavy and wriggly Baby D. The next time we visit we will make sure Baby D is walking at least then our pain will be from crouching rather than carrying.
Next all the way back up to the aquarium, Mummy cleverly let Daddy push the buggy this time. We went off to explore the frogs by this time the wee man was starting to get fed up in the buggy so Mummy popped him in the sling. He was like a brand new baby, he was so excitable. The poor creatures didn’t know what had hit them- literally. The first set of frogs we went to look at got a good finding Nemo style slap to the glass until Mummy cleverly stood slightly to the side so that Baby D could slap the wall while he chatted with the frogs.
Delighted at his new ability to slap and kick to his heart’s content we then visited the rock pool. On the way Baby D decided to attack a poor shark bin, I’m glad it was just a bin and not a shark! The wee man loved looking at all the different creatures, especially the crab. It’s amazing watching him taking everything in and following what is going on. You could see him tracking where all the different fish were going.
The seal talk was up next and it didn’t disappoint. Needing to squeeze in a nappy change beforehand meant as usual we were running late and struggled to get a spot, however after navigating past a family that were standing three wide on the stairs we got a nice spot where Baby D could see and merrily slap the fence. Again Chris gave a very knowledgeable talk about the seals and we watched them doing a few exercises and have a wee snack.
At last Baby D’s favourite part of the day- Lunch! Much like his Mummy and Daddy the wee man really does love his food. ‘The Bridge Cafe’ had lots of tasty treats for Mummy and Daddy and the nice man kindly gave Mummy (who had forgotten) a bowl to heat Baby D’s lunch in the microwave provided. The highchairs were my favourite kind too- the ones that let baby join you at the big table! We had yummy burgers and chips with a much-needed cup of tea!
To end the day we treated the wee man in the shop. I know it really sounds silly but I always let Baby D choose his own gifts. He picked out a little stuffed shark. The squeal of delight when he saw it was a bit of a giveaway as to which toy he wanted. I thought I was being clever and picked out a fish balloon to entertain the wee man on the way home. I think the entertainment was trying to keep a giant fish balloon out of the rear view mirror on the drive home along the motorway.
All in all we had a lovely day. Baby D loved looking at all the interesting new things and the best bit for Mummy and Daddy was watching him having a lovely time. I can’t wait to see what our next day out will be like, Baby D gets more and more out of each new experience it truly is a joy to watch.