Last week was a HUGE week for milestones. As a mom, I know my kids are getting bigger, older and smarter, at least they are supposed to be. But often it is hard to witness this in action. With babies and toddlers you see their progress much more frequently. They sit up, crawl, walk and run all within a year. As they age there are days when it seams they will never get out of one particular stage or another. A child that does not remember to put their shoes away one day certainly cannot remember to do so, regardless of the number of times they are reminded, within the same year or decade. Every once and a while, I look at my kids and think, "When did they get so big?" This week I was absolutely floored with their accomplishments.
We spent the better part of the week on the boat. The week went quickly and with the Pierces here it seamed to flow seamlessly. Our mornings were spent lazily making big breakfasts and waking slowly, the days were full of boating and evenings were for grown-up time. Wow, yes I said GROWN-UP time! With all four adults helping out the chores almost became fun, at the very least they were tolerable. Even the kids got along with rarely a fight.
We have been trying to teach Mark to water-ski since he was about 9 years-old. He bravely tried out the trainer skis and suffered a dunking or thirty before coming out exhausted. Year after year we worked on the trainer skis. He has been able to ski for the past 3 years without much of a problem. Well the problem was he never was very enthusiastic about it. It seamed he half heartily would try it once or twice a year. The rest of the days on the boat he was contented with tubing, which is fine. This year because of his growth spurt and his increased strength we decided to let him use the adult skis. We were worried about the weight of the skis and well just about everything that could go wrong since he is after all still a kid. Boy, did he prove us wrong. He popped out of the water the first time and away we went. There were a few adjustments to be made in the learning curve, but nothing 3 or 4 tries didn't iron out. By the end of the week he was doing tricks! I couldn't believe it. He was having a blast. Every time we would get ready to go out he would state, "I get to ski first right?" Boy oh boy was it exciting.
Jack was my next surprise. He has always been afraid of water. It took him 7 years before he would even put his face underwater. The boat has been a source of stress for him, and now with his broken finger, acquired while boating, it appeared he would forever be "concerned" about going out on the boat. I'll admit our first trip on the boat after "the finger" incident was a bit shaky. But he warmed back up to the boat and even to swimming in the lake. He would however, under no circumstances, ski or tube. It was just fine and dandy that the others did it but he would just watch from the comfort of the boat. This week not only did he tube slowly but he tubed FAST. It was a huge comfort watching him tube with Abby and Mark. I watched is discomfort ease and his smile grow. By the end of the week he actually let go of the tube and purposely fell off the tube while we were moving. Wow-oh-wow!
Emma was yet another surprise. She has tubed before but always with mom or dad and never fast, and never out of the wake. Despite pleading and begging from Abby and Ellen, Emma refused to ride with them until the last day. What changed, I have no clue. With Emma one can never tell. With Jack and Mark it was obvious that the discussions on the Physics and Mechanics of waters affect on the tube, boat and skis made a difference. With Emma I guess she just felt like it. What ever the reason she broke free from tubing with Mom and Dad. Now, it is much cooler to tube with Abby and Ellen. Will it last who knows. But it was great to watch while it happened.
Abby and Ellen even made great strides in the water. Both of them tried skiing and had much success. It was a joy to watch their fears fade and their confidence in themselves grow. We practically had to bribe Ellen to get her back in the boat. She definitely had the mind set she was going to get this and do it NOW!