Yesterday the Clark family went on a fun adventure to the Memphis Zoo, something we ALL love to do.
Struan and I decided we would surprise the kids, so we got them dressed, packed them a snack, and headed out.
The kids were so excited, and spent the majority of the drive making guesses. The Fish Store (Bass Pro Shop, you can guess where Daddy likes to go!), Walmart, Mississippi?
But the minute we pulled up to the Zoo they knew EXACTLY where we were! They couldn’t WAIT to go in and see the animals.
As per family tradition, we asked them each their FAVORITE zoo animal (we always make it a point to visit each favorite animal).
Adeline squealed FLAMINGOS (this truly is her favorite animal, and she always is disappointed when we don’t get to see a flamingo egg hatch. One day!)
Tavi thought for a moment. His usual answer is a giraffe, but this time he yelled ELEPHANTS! He recently discovered a HUGE stuffed elephant on one of our shopping trips, and sobbed the entire time because mean ol Mom wouldn’t buy it.
Struan and I then chose our favorites, his is the giraffes and mine are the penguins. If only I could figure out how to smuggle one home! Kidding…or am I?
We then set off on our Zoo adventure.
We showed our Zoo passes (which I TOTALLY recommend) and went towards the penguins exhibit, they were the closest.
Immediately, Tavish (4 years old) was upset. He didn’t WANT to see the penguins, he ONLY wanted to see the elephants.
He pouted through the penguins, the komodo dragons, the monkeys, and the pandas.
We FINALLY made it to the elephants. He was SO happy. But then it was time to continue our adventure & leave the elephants behind. The tears began to flow.
He continued to pout the rest of the time while we were there. His legs hurt, his tummy was hungry, he was sleepy, he just wanted to go home.
Even though we had a GRUMPY Gus on our hands, the rest of us still enjoyed ourselves.
When I got home last night, I couldn’t help but think that sometimes I’m like my little guy was at the Zoo. I refuse to see the BEAUTY of my life around me, because I’m not where I thought I would be at the moment.
So many time we tell ourselves, When I reach *this* then I will be HAPPY. I CAN’T be happy YET, because I haven’t reached what I set out to do.
We fail to ENJOY the actual journey!!!
My son was SO wrapped up in seeing the elephants, that at times he turned his back to rest of the animals. That photo above was taken in front of a BRAND NEW baby monkey that was SO adorable, but he REFUSED to look because it WASN’T an ELEPHANT!
Because he was so FOCUSED on the elephants, he missed out on so much!
Should we have goals and dreams? Absolutely! But should we be SO focused on getting there that we fail to see what is actually unfolding around us, right here, right now? No way!
“Life is a journey, not a destination. There are no mistakes, just chances we’ve taken. Life is a challenge, not a competition. You can still smell the roses and be on a mission. Just take a moment to get in touch with your heart.” India. Arie
Remember that in between goals, there is this thing called LIFE! LIVE it! As my good friend Ferris once said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”
Yesterday, was an AMAZING day! One that will be remembered for years to come, especially the lesson that my little four year old taught me.
No matter our circumstances, ALWAYS remember to “Enjoy The Journey”.