Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Well, Here I go!

These are actually his own words. My littlest guppy has gone off to kindergarten this year. We were walking down the ramp to his classroom on the very first day and he realized the momentousness of it: "Well," he said, "here I go". I will never forget that moment.
It has taken me a whole month to post this because I still have mixed feelings. It feels like I've had a preschooler in my life forever. Always another little person to schedule my days around, to keep track of, to feed, to drag (reluctantly) along on errands, to play with and talk to... . Then all of a sudden it just...ended.

I didn't cry when I dropped him off, as Big Tuna predicted. Just watched a while through the glass. He was so happy to be starting this new phase of his life and I was happy for him. This is a journey he will be making without me.

Things will be different now. Not better or worse, just... different.

And I'm secretly thrilled when he asks me some mornings,
"Mommy, do I get to stay home today"?

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Budget Cuts

I'm really hoping this isn't the "Perfect" White Water Rafting trip that my husband promised me!

This will have to do for a while though, as it looks like Camp Fisher-Nantahala's budget has been cut by the Fisher Steering Committee. We had planned a second white water trip over Labor Day Weekend since I missed the first one. Alas, as the date approached, it became obvious that our budget would not support such a trip. Plus we are this close to paying off a lingering debt, (which is exciting in itself.) So, with that in mind, we headed off to Grampa's house in King, NC for a quick getaway instead of the rapids.. Thankfully, Grampa had planned to take our kids to Adventure Landing--primarily a putt putt golf and video arcade place--Big T and I tagged along. Lots of fun!
These boats were the highlight, though.
The ride was short, but being able to blast water jets at my husband and kids just for a few minutes was pretty satisfying, I'll admit...

I'm still sneaking that trip into next Fiscal Year's Budget, though!

All Creatures Great and Small

Today I rescued a chicken. We don't live in the country, but our neighborhood has a stray chicken that wanders around pecking at bugs. I do not know how it got here, but we see it most mornings while waiting for the school bus. There's also a guinea hen that flocks with it occasionally. They roam unencumbered through people's yards eating bugs. Amusing to watch.
In the next neighborhood over there are a few peacocks nesting in the trees. We hear their mating calls sometimes. A small flock of geese decorates the picturesque landscape near us. We pass them very morning on our way to work, school, ...anywhere. We've seen raccoons watching us from trees. And a few times, I have been awoken by the soft "whoo, whoo" of an owl or the drilling of a woodpecker in a tree. I've really enjoyed living in the midst of such wildlife. Much nicer than the traffic and trains I listened to daily prior to moving here!
Well. today I was outside helping Mat fix the car when we heard a really horrendous distress cry. It sounded like a cross between a wounded mountain lion and a large bird. Very strange sound. We didn't know what it was. I headed to the backyard thinking some poor animal was tangled in our electric fence. Hmm, nothing there. Thank goodness. Still heard the cries though. Then I realized there was a lot of barking going on in our neighbor's yard. My neighbor's wire fox terrier "Chopper" can be a niusance at times. He had apparently been "hunting" the chicken and had it cornered. I shooed the dog away and the chicken ran free.
A small thing.
But, for a minute, I felt like a wildlife hero!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Camp Fisher-Nantahala

I have always wanted to go white water rafting. Always. Unfortunately, the opportunity never presented itself. Until this summer. You see, I had been searching for summer camps for our girls, and found out that, since I had waited too long (mid June) to do this, I had apparently 'missed the boat'.

This being the first year we considered our girls old enough for summer camp, I did not know that you have to be willing to pony up your applications and cash early or there would not be any spots left--like April(!) At the time, I was looking forward to spending more time with my kids after school ended, not paying someone to take them off my hands (those feelings surfaced a little later). So we missed that summer camp registration window this year.

The camps that were not full by mid June were also the ones that were terribly expensive. Luckily, I was able to get Orca into a four day sleep-away sailing camp--there was space available in her age group but not the older girls--after all, who sends a seven year old girl to sleep-away camp??? (see "Brave Little Camper") So, my husband and I formulated a plan to take Salmon and Grouper on a little camping excursion of our own, complete with white water rafting, caving, panning for gold, and horseback riding.
Sounded perfect! I was so excited!

....Then came the "distress call". Our oldest, Marlin, who was in college in New Mexico,was in a crisis,... again. Scrap the trip, find that 'white knight' helmet and race to the rescue! (this meant buy a last minute plane ticket, fly across the country and drive her and her "stuff" all the way back here --1700+ miles). It's what moms do.

Thankfully my dear husband is an awesome dad--he did not want to dissappoint those girls, and, as an Eagle Scout, I knew he was even capable of handling
2 giggling preteens.

He packed up everything himself, got a map, completed the reservations I never finished, even remembered the camera and

the marshmallows, too!

He brought back some great photos of what I missed and promised me that this was just a warm-up trip for when we go again, to make sure next time is perfect. I just love that man!