Sunday, July 10, 2011

Boating Brynna

Fabulous fun today: we rented a kayak and took B out for her first paddle!

She was extremely excited, since we've been talking about it for awhile. As you can see, she climbed right in on dry land for a little boating safety discussion.

Then a nice lady took a family photo for us before we set off:

On our first round of the pond, Brynna sat in the middle, in between the seats of our tandem kayak. Then we came back to the put-in and re-configured with Brynna in the bow. She thought she'd try out a bit of paddling before Mama joined her in the stern:

One of the reasons we are thinking about getting a kayak is to do boat support for each other during training swims. So B and I escorted Alex on a loop to see how the tandem handled with just one grown-up. It went just fine, and after chanting "go Daddy, go Daddy, go Daddy!" as Alex set off, Brynna was very glad to check in with him mid-swim:

She was using one of our salad tong spoons, which Alex obligingly drilled a hole in and tied up with some cord, as her own miniature kayak paddle. Later in the afternoon, she sat in my lap at one point and "helped" me with my grown-up paddle.

This is my new favorite photo, taken when we were out on the water.

After I took a turn swimming (Brynna, very attentive from the bow, calling out "do you need help?" every time I paused for a few seconds), Brynna had a chance to do some swimming of her own. She can dog-paddle quite happily in her life vest, though she likes a grownup very close...and we are happy to oblige.

Especially now that we're doing some boating, we're trying to teach her to float calmly on her back in case we capsize. She's not enthusiastic about that position yet, but here she is doing a great job with a steadying hand from Dada:

We went out for a second time after Brynna's nap, to see if we could fit Jasper in the kayak as well. We tried with Brynna sitting with me in the bow and Jasper between the seats. Jasper bore up nobly, as he does with all our crazy ideas. B was not super happy squashed in my lap in the bow, and it made me paddle funny to keep from hitting her in the head, so we may need to keep working on our seating assignments. The tandem that we rented was 13 1/2 feet, another foot might let us put dog and daughter both in the center. We'd also like to trial a lighter boat, as there's no way I could get this one up onto the top of the car on my own.

All in all, a delightful day.

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