My most valued possession is my family. Even if you are living in a box
somewhere, and you have the love and support of your family, you will always be
wealthy. Love really is all you need. From love, great things will emerge. From
your thoughts, you can create greatness.This is what I need to remind
myself of everyday to be the best person that I can be. Live your life with
gratitude. Be thankful for all that you have everyday, even if it is your eyes
to see or your ears to hear or your feet to walk or your hands to create.
Understand your place in this Universe; how infinitesimally small you are, but
how huge a contribution your Spirit is. Don't wear blinders to the world around
you, you're not the only one here. Be kind, considerate, don't be judgmental,
love others, and yourself. Know that you are perfect inside; that you are

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Ripley's Aquarium, Gatlinburg

One of the first things we did as tourists to Gatlinburg, Tennessee, was visit the Ripley's aquarium. We were told it was a must-see and we had free tickets courtesy of the cabin rental we went through, so on one of the first days in town (one of the rainy colder days) we thought we'd check it out. Boy, are we glad we did. If you are ever in the area, and I highly suggest you do visit, this really IS a must-see. It was amazing. Here are just a few of my favorite photos I took. I'll try to get the names correct, but bear with me... ;) If you click on the first photo below, it will take you to a gallery that you can page through larger photos with your arrow buttons. Again, many more will be uploaded to Smugmug soon, so I'll let you know as soon as that's done.

This is actually the very first thing we saw...a tank FULL of Piranha. It's a little blurry...they were constantly moving....slooowly. They are only frenzied when hungry.

These jellyfish were the absolute most beautiful thing. There were a lot of them just swimming around so merrily. I edited this photo down to just the one (with one behind) but I will upload the many more I took to Smugmug.

                                                     A type of Anenome, I think.


                                                          Various fish of the Coral Reef

This is me holding a Horseshoe crab. They were in a tank where you were welcome to pet and pick up the crabs. Don't worry, I was gentle, and there was constant supervision.

                                                  Horseshoe crab

                                                                    Lion fish

                       These large Jellyfish were my absolute favorite. Watching them while hearing the serene music they were playing was like watching God. These were some of my favorite photos to take. I'm glad I can share them with you.

                                                Huge Japanese spider crabs

                                This one was sitting in his perch. He did not move the whole day...

                                             More Sea Anenomes

                                  I think these are so delicate and pretty, like underwater flowers.

                                                                       Sea Urchin

                                                   One of my favorites...A Nautilus

                                                   Look at that face!!!

              Can you find him in this picture? This habitat is constructed to look like an underwater wharf. There he is...way down in the lower right corner next to the pole...see him?

                   This is Stingray Bay. Filled with stingrays, there was a spot where you could pet these, too. I did not. I did, however, watch them through the glass. They were very curious. There were two or three that kept swimming up to me at the glass. I tried to get good pictures, but they were just so fast...

Their eyes are on "top" of their body/head, but their cute little mouths are just as they seem, that great big "smile" you see. They open and close their mouths just like lips. I have some amazing video of them with the tiger sharks and saw fish from under the tunnels. It was truly an amazing experience. I've posted some of them to You Tube. You can watch the video of the Stingray and Tiger shark and see all the others I posted. Some are dark, but most are pretty good. I was "under water" in a tunnel, afterall!

                  Here's one of the tiger sharks. It was so surreal being under there with all of them swimming around above us! When you hear about a sharks eyes, they are right...super creepy!

                      A large Crocodile skeleton suspended from the ceiling.

                                           ...and a humpback whale...

And tortoise.

                                                These are sea dragons...can you spot them?

                                                 Cuttlefish-related to squids and octopus

All in all, we had a wonderful time here. I recommend that if you visit Gatlinburg, you absolutely do not miss this attraction! (I think your kids would love it, too :) Check it out here.
Thanks for reading, and again, stay tuned for more Gatlinburg adventures. Next will be the Star Cars museum and our cozy cabin in the mountains with those georgeous views. Then, some amazing pics of our hiking adventures. I can't wait to share it with you!


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