Today we (Ryan's whole side of the family) all went to REI to shop. As we got there the kids saw the huge rock climbing wall at the front of the store. It was "open" and there we people waiting in line to climb it.
Little Miss was fascinated by it and so I asked her if she'd like to climb it. She told me that she'd think about it while we shopped. As we were coming down the stairs she decided that she'd like to try it. Once Little Man saw that she wanted to climb it, he of course decided that he'd like to try climbing it as well.
Little Miss buckled in and was all set. They told her how to indicate that she was strapped in (say "belay" and wait for a "belay" response from the spotter) and how to indicate that she was ready to climb ("climb"). Then she was on the wall. She did pretty well at first. Once she realized that a crowd had gathered to watch her, she got a little overwhelmed and a bit embarrassed (she's not a "center of attention" kind of kid) and wanted to stop. She probably could have gone a bit further but really wasn't comfortable. So the spotter told her to hold onto her rope with both hands and she repelled down the wall. She was excited that she'd gotten halfway up the wall and had fun repelling down.
Next it was Little Man's turn. He strapped in, said "belay", and "climb" and got busy with climbing. He also did great. He got up to about the middle of the climbing wall and by accident realized that if he wasn't holding on the wall that the spotter would "catch" him on the rope and thought that was super awesome. He's definitely a "center of attention" kid. He let go of the wall, held on to the rope, and started swinging. Once he saw that the people watching thought that was cute all climbing went out the window. He started swinging from the rope, then would grab onto the wall again and then let go and push off to swing. He's such a ham! We finally got him to grab the wall and repel down. Once he hit the floor he did a spread eagle on the ground because that's just the kind of kid he is :) It was really funny!