Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Sea Turtle Time!

It all started back in August with a magazine article.  Those who know me know I have a bit of an addiction when it comes to magazine articles.  Picking up the August issue of Charleston magazine started my family talking about what we'd like to see when we went back.  There was a great article about educational activities for kids, complete with an activity, websites, and a book for each topic and with different age categories for each subject as well.  A couple of topics really stood out for Little Man.  The Joseph's Adventure book and tour that teaches about Charlestonian history, and the wildlife topic on sea turtles.  The sea turtles topic for Little Man's age talked about the book Turtle Summer, and a visit to the South Carolina Aquarium's Sea Turtle Hospital.  The hospital can be seen as a behind-the-scenes add-on to the regular South Carolina Aquarium. 

Once the new year started and we knew Little Man's Spring Break schedule, we knew the sea turtle tour was part of what we wanted to do.  And so, we talked about it for months, and when Little Man saw the mommy sea turtle with her babies and eggs, he asked for the set.  How could I refuse such a sweet request?  Even if I did have to reconfigure the pattern to make the eggs hold the babies so they could hatch?

I finished the project with about a week to spare, and the happy sea turtle family came with us.

Yes, Mommy sea turtle is anatomically correct in how she lays eggs!

After a great 4-D ocean movie (we even got sprayed with water) at the aquarium we met with the volunteer who would take us into the hospital and answer questions.  We realized after our return home that our guide was Barbara Bergwerf, the illustrator and photographer of the book Turtle Summer that we had purchased!  She also has a blog with all kinds of information about the turtles.

After a quick introduction we were free to wander and meet the turtles.  Little Man really liked the baby turtles.  He spent quite a bit of time watching Tiny, Howie and Hatchling swim and crawl.

There were two other sea turtles that we befriended during our time.  Little Man sat near Pirate and waved and smiled.  I'm happy to share with you that Pirate was released this past Saturday, May 7th back into the wild after being at the hospital for approximately two years!  You can read about the release here and here.

As for me, Santee decided to pop up and say hello...see for yourself!

We loved the turtles so much!  And I'm excited to share with you what I'm sure is a first for a craft blog...and you saw it here first!  Turtle Art!  You can read more about how it's done here!  Best part?  The proceeds from the canvases all go to the rescue program!

Sea Turtle Art

After the hospital we went back into the main part of the aquarium and enjoyed the rest of the exhibits.

And then...we headed the beach spot to finish our perfect Spring Break week.  It was great, right down to our view!


Anonymous said...

This was truely an awesome and
educational spot for Little Man!
I absolutely LOVE all the pictures!
Love,as always, Mom

Sinéad said...

Aw those turtles are just so cute! I'm really pleased you got the Momma Turtle finished for Little Man in time, he'll always remember his trip now when he plays with her.
Your previous post about Charleston was great, too. I'm starving after all the photos of the scrummy food! Glad you all had a good Spring Break.