Posts Tagged "SCUBA"

Newport Aquarium | A Few of Our Favorite Things

Dear Kid,

We really are lucky to have so many cool things to do in the Greater Cincinnati area. Yesterday we went to the Newport Aquarium (Thanks guys!).

Newport Aquarium. DearKidLoveMom.comIt was a gorgeous day so we didn’t mind waiting outside for the penguins. Yes, some of the African penguins make an outdoor appearance first thing in the morning.

African penguins???

Yep, African penguins. They come from an area in Southern Africa and are extremely rare (which the attendant told us). They are also known as jackass penguins, which somehow got left out of the presentation.

The penguins come out in a stroller, which is fabulous until you realize they are going to stay in their stroller. In plastic cylinders in their stroller.

Educational, but better for little kids rather than college-age kids.

Me: What was your favorite part of the aquarium?
Kid 1 (around a mouthful of Tom + Chee grilled macaroni and cheese): The yellow-finned window cleaners.

It really was fun seeing the scuba divers cleaning the tank.

Me: What was your favorite part of the aquarium?
Kid 2 (after chewing and swallowing her goat cheese grilled cheese): I wanted Mike to move.

Mighty Mike is the 800 pound crocogator currently residing at the aquarium. He spends most of his time imitating a statue.

Kid 2: I also liked the otter.
Me: Me too.

More about the otter tomorrow.

Don't question my dinner choices.

Me: What was your favorite part of the aquarium?
Kid 3 (also after chewing and swallowing): Loggerhead turtle and the divers.

Loggerheads are so named because of their big heads. They eat all sorts of things including jellyfish but they don’t typically eat Portuguese Man-o-War (Men-o-War? How do you pluralize that?) which is probably the only thing that prevents them from being on the Best Turtles Ever list.

Me? I had a great time everywhere. (My blog, I don’t have to choose a fave.) I really liked watching you and Pi identify so many of the fish you’ve seen in the wild.

Contrary to some of the idle speculation, I did not have an adverse reaction to seeing the jellyfish (none of them were PMoW).

The octopus was very cute (as usual) but she is laying eggs which means she’s near the end of her life which is sad. And there is nothing un-cute one can say about the penguins, because they are penguins.

In case you’re wondering, yes, I walked across the new rope bridge (4 miles of rope used to make the bridge). It was kind of cool to see sharks from that angle.

Shark petting at the Newport Aquarium. DearKidLoveMom.comShark! Not part of the petting pool.

Overall, I’m pretty sure my favorite thing of the day was spending time with the World’s Most Wonderful Children.

World's Most Wonderful Kids at the Newport Aquarium.

Love, Mom

Read More

What You Absolutely, Positively MUST Know About Penguins (& Really Cute Pictures)

Dear Kid,

Yesterday was Penguin Awareness Day. Every January 20th, Penguins turn to each other and say, “I feel very aware.” World Penguin Day is April 25th, when penguins (patron saint Bond, James Bond) turn to each other and say “It may be April, but my toes are still cold.”

Penguins (patron saint Fred Astaire) are 12 kinds of adorable. Special thanks to the Newport Aquarium for sharing the photos of all their adorableness.

Here are a whole bunch of things you absolutely positively need to know about penguins (patron saint groom cake toppers).

Gentoo Penguins. They swim faster than you. DearKidLoveMom.comEven though they can’t breathe underwater and most don’t carry an air tank, penguins are speedy little dudes in the sea. All but the laziest of penguins can swim 5-6 miles an hour with bursts up to 15 mph (when there is a particularly delicious looking fish to get or when teenage penguins are trying to show off). Gentoo Penguins zip along at up to 22 mph. This is faster than you can swim.

Part of the reason they swim so quickly is that they bought the same type of swim suit the Olympians wear. Which is to say when they fluff their feathers, bubbles are released that “reduce the density of the water around them… and act as lubrication that decreases water viscosity.” Who knew you could decrease the density of water?

For a special treat, click here–>It’s a Penguin Party! (A La Fiesta de Pingüinos)

Small penguins don’t dive as deep as larger penguins. The big dudes (like Emperor Penguins) can dive 1,870 feet deep for up to 22 minutes. They do not do this in  the aquarium since the floor gets in the way.

Did you know that penguins swallow pebbles and stones as well as their food? It’s probably to help grind up their food (like an internal garbage disposal) although some scientists think the stones are more of a weight belt to help the penguins dive deeper.

On land, penguins waddle between 1.7 and 2.4 mph. Now you know why they live places where land predators do not. And (I kid you not) a group of penguins on land is called a “waddle.”

Happy penguins at the Newport Aquarium. DearKidLoveMom.comPenguins do not have teeth. Rather they hold on to prey with their beak and spines on the roof of their beaks and on their tongues. French kissing is not popular among penguins.

Many penguins mate with the same penguin year after year. Many penguins also cheat on their mate (I am not making this up).

In most penguin species, the male incubates the eggs while the female trots off to hunt and have a lovely GNO. Because the males stay behind for up to weeks at a time, pudgy males are most desirable. Some penguins lose up to 20 or more pounds while they eggsit. This is known as the penguin diet and will soon be the rage in California.

Speaking of penguin diets, you might be wondering about the amount of sea water penguins drink. Not to worry, my friend. Penguins have a special gland (behind their eyes which seems to be as good a place as any to store a gland) which filters saltwater out of their blood stream. Penguins then excrete it by sneezing. I am dying to see a penguin sneeze.

Penguins go through a catastrophic molt, which is when they lose all their feathers at once and spend 2 to 3 week land-bound while they grow new ones. This is sort of the penguin equivalent of What Not To Wear.

How adorable is this little penguin? DearKidLoveMom.comCoolest Penguin Fact:

A penguin’s normal body temperature is approximately 100° F (38° C). To keep from overheating, penguins pant like dogs to cool off. They also ruffle their feathers and hold their wings away from their bodies. Better yet, penguins can control the blood flow to their extremities enough to reduce the amount of blood that gets cold, but not enough so that their extremities freeze. How cool is that?

Best Penguin Fact of the Day:

Some of the prehistoric penguins were enormous—about full-grown person sized. IMHO, this might have diminished their adorableness factor.

Isn’t it amazing what you can learn by celebrating a holiday about penguins (patron saint Prom King)?

Love, Mom

Peguins in their Matisse phase. DearKidLoveMom.comWho knew penguins (patron saint all award show hosts) had a thing for imitating Henri Matisse?

Read More

The Entirely Accurate History of SCUBA

Dear Kid,

Once Upon a Time, there was no such thing as SCUBA diving.

It turns out that Joe Neanderthal’s friend Blorg once suggested they go diving. Since it was approximately four billion degrees below zero and Blorg was not considered especially bright, Joe suggested he do something anatomically difficult with the diving suggestion.

The first person to “breath” while underwater was Robin Hood (the fox) as documented in the Disney version of Robin Hood. (Go re-watch the movie if you don’t believe me.) He uses a reed as a breathing tube. Back in 500 BCE, a Greek soldier supposedly did the same thing (go ask PADI if you don’t believe me) but Robin Hood is cuter so in this blog credit goes to him.

Alexander the Great (best books about him are the ones written by Mary Renault, but if you haven’t read The King Must Die, you should start there) reportedly hid underwater during the siege of Tyre (I’ll look that one up another day) by using a barrel as a diving bell.

Do not confuse Alexander the Great’s Diving Bell with Alexander Bell’s non-diving telephone.

Getting ready to dive. DearKidLoveMom.comFast forward, fast forward, lots of breathing devices (and “rebreathing devices”) were invented. Most were better left alone as they tended not to work.

Family before the dive DearKidLoveMom.comThen ta-da! Jacques Cousteau and Emilie Gagnan created the modern demand regulator and an improved diving suit. And modern day diving was born.

Love, Mom

Read More


Can't remember to check for new posts? No prob. I'll send it to you.

Online Marketing

Blogging Fusion Blog Directory

Blogarama - The Blog Directory

Blog Directory
%d bloggers like this: