I just got back yesterday from a family vacation in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. I had a great time being with my whole family, especially since I do not get to spend time with my brother very often. For the most part, the atmosphere between us was peaceful, which was so nice. That was not always the case with us. We went on a lot of adventures and I surprised some of my family by participating in all of the them. That is something that was also not always the case, because growing up I was a wuss. I knew where all the exits were at Disney World! We went zip lining and my brother and I both went down a hill in a zorb ball, which is a human sized plastic ball with water and you inside. I was extremely conscious before each event that I was making a choice to change. I made a choice to enjoy life-to not live life scared anymore-and I am so glad I did, for I had so much fun! I loved the zorb and to my amazement zipping along the treetops was extremely peaceful and liberating.
While on the trip, I also read the book, "The Secret Life of Bees," by Sue Monk Kidd, which I heartily recommend. This passage from the book reminds me of what I discovered: "May was saying that when it is time to die, go ahead and die, and when it's time to live, live. Don't sort-of-maybe live, but live like you're going all out, like you're not afraid"(211). I loved this book so much, I read it in two days! One of the reasons why I loved the book is that it deals with the issue of mental illness in a very real and honest way. I appreciated that greatly. Also, it is a great book about female empowerment that combines themes of spirituality and racism. You'll find it on my new "Related Books" list."
This is how high we were!
Me inside the zorb.
Adventures in Gatlinburg Food
"Deep Fried Mississippi Catfish" at Blaine's - I LOVE catfish and I thought this was really great. Crunchy and lemony and fishy....Yum! It comes with cole slaw and french fries, but I got a salad instead.
Garlic Rolls at "Best Italian Cafe and Pizzeria" These garlic are to die for-soft, buttery, and garlicky.
This was my mom's calzone and it was huge!
Crab dip at "Legends By Max" "Surimi crabmeat, cheddar cheese, garlic and lemon combined with cream cheese. Served with tortilla chips." You can tell the chips are homemade too-fabulous! Unfortunately, I was not impressed by the salad I got from there.
Blackberry ice cream from Ben & Jerry's with hot fudge. (By the way, Ben & Jerry's is my favorite kind of ice cream!)
A ham and pineapple personal pan pizza at "Smoky Mountain Brewery." Ham and pineapple are my favorite toppings and this pizza did not disappoint! I support local beers and so I had an "Appalachian Pale Ale" and I liked it. It's not quite as light tasting as Blue Moon, which is my favorite beer, but it was nice.
I am so glad that I chose life and enjoyment this past week. Life is full of choices-choose to fully embrace life!