One of the few "boating regrets" from last summer was our inability to get Tess completely up as a wakeboarder, despite multiple attempts. (It's not a strength thing, or a talent thing, it's a "knack" thing - that you just have to "get" - and once you do, it's like riding a bike....you don't forget). So, that's been a priority since this last spring, as John has repeatedly asked, "When are we going to get Tess out?".
Given she's out at Harlow, that's proved to be a challenge. We had originally planned on going out with her and Kimmie and a couple of other gals on Saturday, but the boys really wanted to participate (Traig had yet to be out on the boat this year) - and they were having their rafting day with the high schoolers that day. Finally, we concluded we'd go with just Tess and Kimmie (everyone else was busy) after church on Sunday.
Mikayla bounced up first - showing everyone how it's done. She's "caught the bug" now - and looks so carefree out there taking all of the joy of the experience in.
It's the same story for Nati. I think Mikayla might have her beat on form, but Nati might be a little more adventurous....I sense it might be a mini competitiveness for them which is just a source of encouragement to keep them trying and progressing beyond their initial comfort zones. Don't get me wrong, though, I'm a firm believer in "lake play" being only about what makes a person happy and not about just getting "better"....
Nat has become a "woman" before our eyes this year - in terms of height, stature, etc....it's weird to look at this picture or catch a random glance and see so much of Michele in her. (Doubly weird I suppose when I'm a twin and I suppose that's like seeing myself....but it's more expressions and mannerisms - crazy)).
Next up - Tess.
She had told the girls earlier in the week (when at Harlow together) that she didn't really think she'd want to try again as she'd tried and failed again with a different group at Triangle Lake. I know what that frustration feels like, so I was doubly proud of her for hopping in the water.
Her first attempt had her more successful than any other try, and then the second had her fully out of the water - officially wakeboarding. She was SO HAPPY!
Love this "I did it" personal smile....
We took a little break (on the very hot day) to get the kids in the water.
After having seen previous pictures of herself looking "more determined than happy", Kimmie made a point to smile as she boarded and carved it up. That gal can pull out of what looks to be a certain fall like nobody I know.
I took a quick turn - water had glossed over too nice to ignore.
And then Michele - who is obviously happy. Unfortunately, the dam was the only area where the water was nice, so she ended up taking quite the choppy run around the lake before finally dropping the rope.
Next up, intertube time. The boys had begged for us to get a smaller tube for them to lay on. Unfortunately, it's only a one person, so they both didn't really fit on it. They were content, though, to take turns.
We quickly kicked the older girls off and put Tess and Kimmie on. Because they had to be at Harlow later that afternoon and had driven out, we knew we could pull the kids after they left.
The tubes would come close and push off each other - kind of added to the fun dynamics.
Both Tess and Kimmie were dancing to the music.
After dropping off Tess and Kimmie-
Emotionally, Sunday was an interesting day. John had spent the week without kids or a wife (good timing as they are launching a new product/program at work and it took a lot of extra work in the evening) and I was worn out in my own ways from traveling and camping. So, we weren't meshing. Here Tess and Kimmie were wearing these perma-grin smiles and talking about what a blessing this kind of "God day" was for them - and then you have John and I (maybe more me than him, I can for sure only speak for myself) with eyes rolling and somewhat snide comments towards each other. Not our best moments. I'm so thankful that even when our (my) attitude(s) stink, God can still use the circumstances to bless other people.