Monday, August 9, 2010

Back from Tennessee

We made it back from our Tennessee vacation Saturday night. We spent a week in the Gatlinburg area and did lots of hiking and site-seeing. Vacations like this are right up my alley because it allows me to see the outdoors ... which I love. It also allowed me to spend a lot of time doing some really fun things with my family. I have to admit, though ... I feel like I need a vacation from the vacation! I'm moving a little slow today.



The above picture is from Chimney Top trail. It was a 4 mile hike (round trip) and was one of the most amazing hikes I've been on. I had Mercy on my back the entire time in our Kelty Pack. She had not been in the Kelty Pack before and wasn't a big fan at first. But, she soon learned that the Kelty Pack meant getting a lollipop and she eventually grew to love the thing. :) The first mile of Chimney Top trail was difficult ... the second mile was "Oh, my word, when will it end" difficult. :) It was incredibly steep and described as "strenuous" on the hiking map. But, it was so much fun to have my daughter strapped to my back and doing this hike with her. When we started the second mile, there was nobody else with us and I just had so much fun with her enjoying God's creation and getting an amazing workout! Plus, she just babbled the entire time and it was so cute. To date, it was my favorite time with her.



We also went to Dollywood and could not have chosen a more hot and humid day to do this! When we left at 3pm, it was 97 degrees, but it was still a fun time with our family. Ezra was able to ride his first rides and he just loved it! His favorite part, though, was the children's area where they had these air guns that looked like canons. He played there for the longest time and we had so much fun together. He shot the gun ... I was the "go-fer" ... because he kept on saying, "Dad, can you get more balls." Dollywood is a pretty amazing place, that's for sure, with lots of fun things for the family. Carol's words to Ezra when we entered Dollywood were: "Ezra, this is not a place where you pull down your pants and pee outside." :) He's such a boy.




The picture above is from Clingman's Dome .... a nice mile hike with a tower at the top. It's the highest point in the Smokey's at 6,643 feet.




We found a really cool looking log cabin on one of our hikes also. Here is Mercy showing off her cuteness. :)



This pic pretty much sums up how we are all feeling at the moment. :)


I love vacations with my family! I love being able to be with them for a week and just enjoy them. And, I'm convinced that our family needs to do a vacation like this at least once a year ... a vacation where we really get to enjoy the outdoors. I loved hiking with Ezra and just talking to him about how God created everything he sees. We also did some horseback riding and went to an aquarium.

Although a bit tired today, I'm feeling refreshed and ready to kick it in gear for our fall ministry.

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