Family Alive

Brian, Kristine, Analise, and Josiah Toone

Frozen and Not So Frozen

20th December 2005

We’re having a wonderful first leg of our winter wonderland vacation visiting Hal and Anna in Platteville, Wisconsin. Today we drove down to Dubuque, Iowa (about twenty minutes south). Dubuque is located on the Mississippi River, which you can see is mostly frozen in this picture.

This part of Wisconsin and Iowa is really quite amazing. We saw four bald eagles today as we were driving on the highway. Two were sitting on the edge of the ice near open water on the Mississippi, and another two were perched in a tree near the highway. Eagles are amazing. To think such a huge animal can actually fly!

Our main destination for the trip was the Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium. It was awesome! There were all kinds of river animals ranging from tiny turtles to huge alligator snapping turtles. I’ve included the pictures below with a caption describing each.

Don’t be fooled … this alligator was huge … imagine how big that means the alligator snapping turtle next to it was! I definitely won’t be wading in the Mississippi River any time soon.

Here’s an interesting family portrait from the “Toadally Frogs” exhibit. There were frogs from all over the world. There were some cool little orange ones, blue ones, and green ones.

Here’s everybody waving!

Analise decided that the frogs were neither moving around nor jumping enough, so she decided to try to do both! She still hasn’t mastered jumping, but she sure can run. Aunt Anna did a great job of demonstrating how to jump. Here’s some short video clips. (Click on the picture to see them).

Analise also thought it was appropriate to kiss all the frogs with their big lips. I’m not sure if she was looking for her prince charming or not, but even if she finds him, she has to wait until she’s 30 to date him!

What would an aquarium be without playful otters? This aquarium is no exception, although these are certainly cold water river otters … something you don’t see every day. Note the snow and icicles!

Speaking of cold, here’s Analise right before we headed out the door. She makes the funniest face when we first get outside; it’s kind of a grumpy what’s going on face. I think she is torn though, because I think she likes the snow — she waves at it a lot.

Lastly, I went for a bike ride yesterday here in Platteville. As you can probably tell from the picture below, it was cold. Yes, that is an icicle hanging from my lip. No, it didn’t hurt. Yes, it’s kinda gross. How did that happen? Well, I was riding my mountain bike on some snow mobile trails when it was only 3 degrees … imagine the windchill! Whew.

2 Responses to “Frozen and Not So Frozen”

  1. tb Says:

    wait a second… you’re this close to me, I wanna see you guys (and Anna and Hal too)!!!!!!!!!

  2. steve Says:

    man, brian, use a tissue please!

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