Thursday, April 5, 2007

do cowgirls swim?

"Yee-ha! I'm a cowgirl!" said each of the girls after getting dressed this morning. Today, along with Noemi, Lisa, Betsy, and their kids, we had an outing to a large rodeo that comes around every spring. The girls have been looking forward to this for quite a while. We came last year and Erin remembers much of the detail of that visit. The schedule today was a bit limited, but still there was plenty for animal-loving city kids to see. It was more like a county fair experience. The bull riding and big events are always in the evenings; during the days are teens showing their prize animals in smaller competitive events. Still, this was much more enjoyable for the kids than our usual livestock encounters, which involves waving at them on distant hillsides as we drive down the freeway. The entire area was open for wandering around and meeting and greeting.

I love this photo. -->

After checking out the horses outside we went into the hog barns.

Watching the hog competition, or "piggy show" as Kate and Allison called it.

Then on to the cow barns, where the kids enjoyed watching the 4H and FFA kids wash and groom their cows in prep for show.

Erin and some pals watching the cows, and getting inspired by the corporate-sponsored life lesson above them.

A little more wandering, a little lunch, and it was a great day with our friends. Then we came home and Erin had a brief nap before the next part of her exciting thursday--her first swim class. Erin's latest gymnastics session is over and her enthusiasm for it had been waning significantly anyway, so she was very happy with my suggestion that she try swimming lessons. Uncle Jeff has a pool and it would be nice to have one less potentially sinkable child I think.

We arrived and watched some other kids finish their lesson and Erin seemed thrilled to get her chance. But then when she met her teacher, a nice young man, she decided she did NOT want a "boy teacher". I guess she was expecting a woman and I didn't know who her teacher would be until we got there today. She threw a great fit and wouldn't go with the other 2 little girls into the pool, and I wasn't getting anywhere in trying to reason with her.

A supervisor came over, talked to her for a minute and ultimately just picked her up as she kicked and screamed and put her in the pool. That's just what I was hoping he'd do because she isn't afraid of the water. She loved swimming in Hawaii and at every visit to Uncle Jeff's pool. It's just time for her to learn to be free of the floaties that have made this possible up to this point.

She calmed down a bit but then the supervisor noticed that the instructor next to hers was a woman with only one student and was teaching the same level, so Erin was moved to her, which made a nice 2 students/1 teacher setup for both instructors.

She was fine for the rest of the class and seemed to enjoy everything. She followed directions and was smiling and waving at me. I hope this goes well.

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