Sunday, May 4, 2008

Gatlinburg Adventure

I recently went to Gatlinburg with one of my dear friends. It was just us Moms and our kids (2 two year olds and 2 four year olds). We stayed at Westgate Smoky Mountain Resort. We had such a great time exploring Gatlinburg. It is such an amazingly beautiful place!
We spent more time off the beaten path than in the mainstream Gatlinburg. I have been twice before but always to downtown. I LOVE this part of Gatlinburg and can't wait to go back! On our way the kids and I talked about what we wanted to see and then prayed to God about our desires. I wanted to see a waterfall, Ryan wanted to see a bear, and Arianna wanted to see Karissa. We saw all three:)
We saw a Momma bear and her 2 cubs out in the woods at Cades Cove. I wasn't able to get a good picture of the bears but you can see the deer that we saw on our hike through Wet Bottom Trail at Cades Cove. They were all around us!

We ate at Bubba Gumps twice. Yummy, Yummy, Yummy!!!!
We went to a Deer and Exotic Animal Petting Zoo. They had kangaroos, deer, goats, baby goats that ranged from 1 week to 3 weeks old, camels, zebra, peacocks, zonkeys and much more.

Ari with the Nanny Goat and her 2 kids

We also hiked 1.3 miles up hill to Laurel Falls and had a picnic. The kids walked the hike which totalled 2.6 miles there and back. Wow! Arianna didn't complain a single time which was amazing! Ryan ended up being carried for a short part of the down hill hike. He fell asleep on my shoulder and then woke up and walked the rest. The waterfall was breathtaking! I wish we had time to see more of the waterfalls!
We thought this sign was funny (though we took it very serious). Ryan as soon after we take the picture starts running up the path with his arms in front of him saying "I Superman". He got really upset when Mommy wouldn't let him do that. The path was definately dangerous if one was not careful. One side was rock and the other side was just a giant drop off with trees.

Almost everyday, we went swimming at the Wild Bear Falls Indoor Water Park. By the end of the week, the kids were like little fish! In Gatlinburg, we saw the creativity of God in the flowers and trees, the gentleness of God through His creatures, the power of God in the waterfall and the love of God through our answered prayers.

"Nature is the art of God - LA NATURA E L'ARTE DI DIO" Dante Alighieri