The first half of the year went by without any other major incidents like what we had in the previous post. In March, we went to Gatlinburg for the weekend. We stay at a timeshare but Andrew always calls it "the big house". Our kids enjoy exploring and learning about "the olden days" so visiting the settler's houses is always a must, second only to swimming in the pool.
One night a couple of the girls and Andrew were bored at Tobin's game, so they found an empty warm-up pen and tried to play with a bat and ball. Next thing you know, Jen hears Andrew's scream and knew something was wrong. Andrew came running over and by the time he got to Jen(only seconds) he had a bump in the middle of his forehead between his eyes the size of an egg, no exagerating. Turns out he walked right into the aluminum bat as his sister was swinging.
Jen scrambled around trying to find someone with a cooler so she could put ice on Andrew's enormous mound. Andrew ended up being completely fine except that for the next week he had a bump with a bruise, which then turned into a scab for several weeks. To this day it is a faint red spot. He keeps asking when his bump will go away.
Living in the middle of the National Forest, 2 miles in, on a dead end road has it's disadvantages. Apparently, people think it's a great place to free their unwanted animals. Being a family with many kids in a neighborhood of not many kids, most strays find their way to our yard. In May we picked up 3 sweet little German Shorthaired puppies playing in the road, obviously malnourished from being recently dropped off. Animal control would not come since it was a Friday, so we kept them for the weekend and of course, the kids fell in love. We have one Alpha male dog already, so we decided to keep the female. We brought the 2 brothers to a foster home for dogs sponsored by the Humane Society.
Even though we were keeping one of the puppies, our kids were really upset about giving up the other two. It may seem strange, but we were really encouraged to see Andrew grieve over this loss. To us it showed that he was in a good place emotionally. Just this past week, our puppy(4 1/2 months old now) unexpectedly passed. Again, we got to see him process his sadness with many tears.
We went camping in June with family and friends. We went to our favorite spot in the woods, a small hike in to a campsite surrounded on 3 sides by a creek. It doesn't have a strong current so its perfect for children of all ages to wade in. It's full of rocks and wildlife so it makes for a kids' paradise.
The creek turns into a waterfall that flows into the Chattooga River. There's a small beach area by an edy for the smaller kids to play. Some of us swam out with the older kids and explored the rocks across the river. Andrew absolutely loves water, so again another great trip for him.