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I Got to Hold Chewbacca!

I am not lazy. But, I did go slothing last weekend.

I am a bit slow and very laid back. But, I’ve never hung upside down for hours.

Regardless, I’ve joked for years that a sloth is my spirit animal. I’ve not taken any quiz or test to confirm this, it is just what I’ve said for as long as I can remember. They are pretty dadgum cute and I can only imagine what a back scratching would be like with those long, curved nails claws.

My daughter’s spirit animal is a fox, but guess what she asked for on her birthday in April? A sloth experience. A friend of hers from our days living in Mississippi told her about the Hattiesburg Zoo where they offer just this thing. A sloth experience. And I got to hold Chewbacca! “Arrrhwrawerrururu!”

chewy upside down

Feeding a Sloth

The Hattiesburg Zoo is such a fun zoo! We began with our sloth-experience-tour-guides explaining that dangly earrings or necklaces might not be a good idea. He, (Chewbacca) might like them, too and he doesn’t ask politely if he can have them. After removing our jewelry, our first stop was the kitchen where we helped prepare Chewy (aka Chewbacca) and Moe’s dinner.

sloth grubs

Sloths eat apples, pears, celery, carrots, lettuce, sweet potatoes and canned protein.

slicing apples

slicing sweet potatoes

We sliced the food into thin pieces so they can hold them between their claws.

growing bell peppers

The zoo began an experiment this year, growing some of their own food. It was a big success and here are some of the last bits of produce for the season.

cooler full of food

We were allowed to walk into the cooler where they store most of the food for the animals.

Creature Comforts

hedgehog

The first creature we were allowed to “pet” was this little guy. When you first touch him, he jumps and begins to sneeze. So cute for a hedgehog!

chinchilla

Next, Kaitlyn brought out a chinchilla. The fur is so soft. I understand why there’s been a fur trade for this cute little rodent since the 16th century. But, they are too cute to wear!

evil bunny

We could only peep into this bunny’s habitat because as our guide explained, “He is evil.” I wondered how something so cute and fluffy could be evil? But, I took her word for it.

Chewy, a Sloth Experience

hammock

We were first introduced to Chewy and Moe in their habitat. Chewy loves his hammock.

Moe

Moe is not as social as Chewy, so she continued her daydreaming in her hammock.

sloth love

Princess Van Gogh was the first in our group of six to cuddle with Chewy.

Hello, my name is Chewy.

This is Chewy. He is quite photogenic.

happy birthday pvg

I think she liked her birthday present!

holding on

His claws holding on loosely.

my turn

Guess who’s neck Chewy nuzzled next?

great hug

Getting a great hug, but he was distracted by a ceiling pull hanging above our heads.

camera sloth

He’s quite the camera hog sloth. Such a cute face, with a big, wet nose and soulful eyes.

sticking out the tongue

long claws

These long claws were around my neck!

hanging with a sloth

Chewy is truly an incredible experience. He is just adorable! I drove two hours to hold him; Princess Van Gogh 3 1/2 hours. I speak for us both when I say it was SO WORTH IT! If you are anywhere near Hattiesburg, make your reservations and go give Chewy a hug.

Discovering the Rest of the Zoo

goat

Goats are so funny.

Please stop for Sheep!

This sweet face reminded me of my trip to England where we saw them throughout the Cotswolds.

ostrich

This fellow has something wrong with one of his eyes. But he seemed to follow us along the path around his exhibit.

king snake

I was actually a teensy-bit happy to meet this little guy. Only because it is a king snake which eats other snakes! Other than a dead snake, this is my favorite kind.

tarantula

Thank goodness for zoom lenses. I was not this close to this scary creature. Freaks me out just looking at the picture again.

zoo entrance

This is an enchanting zoo.

pig run

They even have a pig run every day at 4 pm.

water pad

And a fun water pad for hot summer days.

hattiesburg zoo

selfie with chewy

My favorite selfie of all selfies!  Yep, I’ve been loafing around with a sloth. Thanks for waking up for us, Chewy! And to my Princess… Happy Birthday! I enjoyed it so much!

Linking with these utterly fabulous parties:

Celebrate Your Story,  Mommy MomentsRustic and Refined,  Coastal Charm,

Cooking and Crafting with J&JThe Scoop,  Inspire Me Tuesday, Tasty Tuesdays

Inspire Me Monday,  Tickle My TastebudsWow Us Wednesday,

Full Plate ThursdayWork it WednesdayCreative Spark,  Home Matters, Idea Box,

Poofing the Pillows,  Sweet Inspiration,  DIY Sunday ShowcaseGet Your DIY On,

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{ 7 comments… add one }
  • Christine September 1, 2016, 6:41 am

    Wow, looks like you had such a fun day! I am quickly falling in love with Chewy! Thanks so much for joining us a the DI & DI Link Party. I hope you had fun and have a great week!

  • Lori August 28, 2016, 4:25 pm

    Omg! I love this. My son has an affinity for sloths… 🙂 Looks like you enjoyed yourself!

    Would you consider sharing this at our weekly Dishing It & Digging It Link Party? We are live every Sunday @4pm.

    http://www.thestonybrookhouse.com/2016/08/dishing-it-digging-it-link-party-111.html

  • Jess August 23, 2016, 12:38 pm

    Oh gosh…I’m SO jealous! HOW FUN!

    Thanks for joining Cooking and Crafting with J & J!

  • Miz Helen August 23, 2016, 11:58 am

    That is the cutest little guy ever and such a great post. Thanks so much for sharing this with us at Full Plate Thursday, we sure enjoyed it! Have a great day and come back to see us real soon.
    Miz Helen

  • CraftyHope August 21, 2016, 8:31 am

    How fun. I wasn’t even aware that Hattiesburg had a zoo! That’s very good to know. We recently did a sloth encounter as well at the Zoo in Gulf Shores. I don’t think our encounter was as involved as yours. There was no prepping of the food, no other animals involved, and no actual holding of the sloths. We were able to feed and pet the two they have there though. And, it was just the two of us. My niece and I thoroughly enjoyed it! I may have to look into Hattiesburg’s now though. . . Thanks so much for sharing your experience!!

  • Katrin August 20, 2016, 4:39 am

    He looks so cute but I don’t think I could hold him, lol! I do love the bunny though. I’m wondering if it has company, it looks like it’s all alone and bunnies need others to be happy, so maybe that’s why it’s “evil”?

  • Stacey Keeling August 19, 2016, 8:27 am

    Oh my goodness Kim! What a neat experience. I would love to hold a sloth. I had no idea that was even possible. Looks like so much fun and memories in the making.

    Happy Thoughts of Home. 🙂

    By the way, I like the whole premise of your blog. Looking forward to the southern sharings.

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