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Monday, August 11, 2008

Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you....

happy birthday dear Kaylee....happy birthday to you!

It is official - my baby is 14!! She gets the last day of fun and party, before school starts, all about her. The difference about today is that the siblings will be okay that the day is all about her (as compared to the other days that are not her birthday LOL).

The celebration started yesterday with a white water rafting trip at Paddle Inn Rafting Company. With all of the excitement and chaos surrounding baby Jude, our family pool party (originally scheduled for yesterday) was postponed, so we woke up yesterday to Daddy's brilliant idea of a family rafting trip. The hour and half drive went fairly smoothly thanks to our new Sirius Satellite radio! Amazing what Radio Disney for 90 minutes straight can do for a person. For the kiddos - it couldn't get any better! For the adults - it's a trade off of having to hear the Jonas Brothers (for what feels like nonstop) instead of the "questionable" pop music played on regular radio stations (one listen to "Lollipop" and you'll get what I mean). So anyways, we arrived at the rafting hut, and registered for what we lovingly referred to as the "poor man's special." For $34, all 5 of us could take the raft on the short run that lasts about an hour. The kiddos were disappointed when they realized that we wouldn't get to go through some of the more adventurous spots (and I admit I was, too), but frugality (is that a word?) won out. Blah, blah, blah...we listened to the guide give us instructions before sending us on our merry little way. I mean, how hard can it be? The river didn't look that rough from the road. Next we boarded an old converted school bus (bringing back many Junior High memories - eek!) and hung on for dear life as Paddle Boat Petty raced down the little windy road - enough to make even the best NASCAR driver green with envy (or at least motion sickness). He let us out with our 600 pound raft and bid farewell!

After some logistical trials and errors, all 5 of us finally got the raft to the river. Off we go!!! Now, did I mention that Robbie was the only one that had ever done this before? Great! Who needs a guide...we have our own experienced rafter acting as captain. Oh, but wait, did I mention that it had been over 20 years ago? And that he didn't remember a whole lot at first? No? Well, neither did he (LOL). As we pushed off, immediately, we went the wrong way - down a little canal, backwards. Luckily for us we made it (although barely) back out into the river. It was then that I saw the white caps. Wait a minute! Where is the calm, flat water that we were going to float over? Isn't it like the lazy river at Wet N Wild? You mean that we have to ride over those waves (more like jump), and get wet (in 46 degree water), and still use the paddles to try and avoid the rocks? You mean the kids and I have to paddle too? Okay, so let it be known, that this is not a "sport" that I fact, I despise it. Sitting up on the blow-up bench, not able to reach all 3 of my kids, and not having enough hands - thanks to that darn paddle. I just knew that Garrett as going to fall out (probably because he told me that he was going to fall out intentionally), and we would never be able to get him back into the raft. What if Kaylee or Lana fell out too? What if Robbie fell out? I remember when the kids were little, and I would take them out alone, worried that I only had two hands. I haven't felt that way in a looooong time - until yesterday. Every bump and rock and wave we rode over I tried ever so hard to grab all 3 and keep them in the raft - infuriating them all. I was really scared, and showing a weakness like that with my kids is never good. Garrett jumped up and down, the girls laughed, and I cried...and Robbie told me to stop looking so terrified. That was all with in the first 15 minutes! So miserably, we continued the run. We only got stuck on a rock once, and were so very lucky to be rescued by another rafting group as they rammed into us head on to free us. The time went quickly, and since he had been so patient (well not really, but he didn't disobey), we let Garrett accidentally on purpose fall out of the raft at the beach. So, as a huge relief for me, our adventure had come to an end. We dried off, got in the car, and headed home...all the while listening to the accounts told by the kids (that just means that they gave me a really hard time and made huge fun of me on the way home). The final consensus was that everyone loved it (except me!), and next time I am not allowed to go - which is fine with me. I'll stick to the pool (which is exactly what we are doing today!).

Pictures will follow...we took a waterproof camera on the raft, and Kaylee is saving some film for underwater pool pics today!


zen said...

Still, it was an adventure - Helen and prefer the more local (and more relaxing) tubing down the French Broad out from Hominy Creek park.