August 30, 2010

First Day of School Post...Take 5?

I don't know how many 'first day of school' posts I've written but here's one for this year.  These are my Elementary kids.  I have yet to take one of Kennidy.  The older I get the more disorganized I am.  Adam and Makinley were excited for the first day of school.  Ford and I had a Kindergarten Orientation.  So Tuesday will be his first official day.  He can't wait.  We are looking forward to a great school year!

August 22, 2010

A New Coach

A week before school started, Brandon and I were standing in the kitchen and he said, ‘Did Karl Watts talk to you today?’ (It was Sunday and he was meaning at church).  I said no and asked what about.  Brandon said Karl had asked him if he thought I’d be interested in helping to coach the boys soccer team at the high school here in Dayton.  I kind of chuckled to myself.  I’m not qualified for that.

Later that evening, I called and left a message for Karl.  Brandon and I decided that if we could work out the would probably be a good learning experience for me.  So I waited to hear what Karl wanted from me as far as responsibilities and then what steps I would have to take to make it official.  That night before bed, I said a prayer and asked my Heavenly Father if this was something worth taking on.
Well, Karl called back the next day and come to find out I would have to take 3 online courses that would cost me $100 total.  A First-Aid training, CPR certification, and a Coaching Course.  He said anyone interested in volunteering at the high school had to take these courses and he was currently in the middle of one.  He was a little surprised when I told him I was still interested.  I felt like this would be a great learning opportunity for me but even would be an opportunity to make a difference.  I want to make a difference.  I want to be able to see the potential that these boys have and help them to see it.  Not for them to be proud and cocky...but to use that knowledge for good.  Sometimes when we catch a glimpse of our potential...we feel empowered to do and be better.  Karl then told me that I would have to go in for fingerprinting and have a background check run before I started.  I was ready to go by the first week of school.
I took the first week to observe the dynamics of the team.  And one things was very clear off the bat.  They didn’t speak English.  They know how but choose to speak Spanish.  There are 4 boys on the team that don’t speak Spanish and Karl is bilingual.  Lucky him.  There is another assistant coach, Jose.  He’s bilingual, too but speaks Spanish much better than English.  I’m kind of intimidated. 
So the week progresses as follows...2 practices, 2 games, and a practice.  I saw them play their second game of the week and it was sad.  They pooped out at min. 27 of the first half.  I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.  They were so tired.  They gave up goal after goal because they couldn’t keep up.  I was sitting in the stands and the parents were commenting.  ‘Their not attacking!’ and ‘Their not running after the ball!‘  If a player was substituted, he’d come off the field and ask, ‘What did I do?’  They totally thought that Karl was pulling them off the field because they did something wrong.  
They are very defensive and take no responsibility for their own actions.  They don’t play as a’s all about the individual and how he can make himself a star.  Their passes are sloppy but their ball handling skills are great.  They can dribble around multiple players and work it up the field but they won’t look to pass.  There’s no unity.  And tired at min. 27 are you kidding me.  These boys needed conditioning in a bad way.  
I went home with a purpose.  I went online and found many articles and drills for conditioning.  I printed some out and was prepared to present them to Karl at the next practice.  Then I said a prayer for help.  A long prayer for help.  
Well, Friday came and I waited for Karl or Jose to make my pitch.  I wanted to be in charge of conditioning this team.  I waited until 3:20...then 3:25...practice is suppose to start at 3:15 and we still didn’t have either one of our coaches.  I decide this was the Lord’s way of helping me.  I got the boys together and told them that I was starting practice.  I needed them to run a lap and then we were going to do some conditioning drills.  I needed them to see me as their coach.  And with no other coaches to ‘over rule’ me...I was good to go.
We had a good practice.  I asked them to do some hard things, but they were up to the challenge and did everything I asked.  They were tired and hurting by the time Karl actually got to the field but they all realized that this is what they really needed.
I hope I follow the spirit with this particular experience because the youth of the world scare me a little.  And I just want to make a difference.  Good Luck to me!

August 21, 2010

Dust Devil Sprint Triathlon

A few months ago when Bridget said we should all do a triathlon, after our Freel Peak hike, I really wasn't that excited.  I mean, we just finished hiking to Freel Peak!  Anyway...she found one in Fallon, Nevada and said we should do it in teams.  So teams were formed, Bridget went out of town, and we were registered!
I do have to say that I had fun.  And I would do it a team.  I like team sports.  We entered 2 teams...Dust Devil Moms and I can't remember the other team name.  Our team consisted of our swimmer, Jared Miklich (originally Laura Klein was our swimmer...then it fell to Ian...then fell to Jared, who was left with 2 weeks to practice, he did awesome), our biker, me, and our runner, Julie Logan.
Jared swam a 1/4 mile.  I rode 14 miles.  And Julie ran a 5K in the hot, hot sun.  We were all really nervous.  We kept telling ourselves that it was just for was just for fun.  And I had to keep telling myself...'Be like the whale...and swallow Jonah'.  Over and over and over.  
We got 3rd place in the teams division.  I don't know my exact time but we think it was around 50 min.  And for my first race ever...I think that was pretty good.  Our final time was 1:32.  I can't remember the seconds.
Here are all the participants from the 2 wards in Dayton.  
Jared and Nikki Miklich, Jenni Workman, Staci Creswell, Tim and Julie Logan, and Mark Gardner.  Tim came in 1st in his division with Mark in 3rd.  We were all winners!  And not just participants.  Thanks, Bridget for planting the seed!

August 19, 2010

A Day Trip to Folsom

We went to Folsom, Ca with the Workmans to enjoy a bike ride and go to the famous (in our house) aquatic center.  I forgot to take more pictures of our bike ride.  We really had a good time.  I love that trail along Lake Natoma...I think that's what it's called.  Here is a run down of our adventures.
Kids sleeping on the way there.
Kirsten throwing up.
Seeing the temple from our bike trail.
Eating in the shade of a big tree.
Wishing that the rope swing on the tree wasn't broken.
Seeing kayaks and row boats on the lake.
Losing Jenni, Raquel, Kirsten, and eventually, Oakley.
Getting a GREAT workout...trying to find everyone.
Cherry Icees @ Chevron.
Dinner to go from Wendy's.
Kids sleeping on the way home.
And after all was said and done...we had a great time with our friends.  I think my next trip to Folsom will be to go shopping at the outlet mall with Jenni.  That's something to look forward to...when we find the time.  Oi!

August 14, 2010

Tatiana comes to visit

Tatiana got to spend a week with us.  I was sorry it was right after Girls’ Camp because I was so tired and we stayed home most of the week.  But the kids found things to do.  They made a couple of videos, played dress up, rode bikes/scooters, listened to music, and Jeannie came over to show us how to make fabric flowers, thank you!  The girls made soooo many!  On Friday we went to Sand Harbor with friends.  I love that place.  The water was really nice and there weren't as many people as I thought would be there. Rachel, Melissa, and Asher came Friday night and stayed until Sunday.  Just a quick trip to pick up Tatiana.  Saturday, we took everyone to Spooner Lake.  We enjoyed a nice 2 mile hike.  It was so pretty and the weather was really nice.  Not too hot and not too cold.  Perfect.  Saturday night we went to our favorite restaurant in Carson City...REDS 365!  My new love is ordering those southwestern know the ones with black beans and corn...well Reds delivered.  They call it the Explosion Salad.  It was so tasty.  I think everyone liked what they ordered, which is rare in our home.  We love that place.  We got to sit outside on the patio with the sun in our eyes.    On our way out, we raided the mint bowl.  I love those mints.  They are sooo good.

August 08, 2010

Real Girls. Real Strong.

Girls’ Camp 2010 was amazing.  These YW are real strong.  They love each other.  They love the Lord.  And they love their standards and live them.  And this makes them strong.  I was privileged to spend a whole week with them and to feel of their strength.  It was amazing to see them in action.
Paula and I were the 4th yr. leaders.  We were in charge of the 4th year ‘Overnight Hike’.  5.3 miles.  Singing part of the way.  Sweating part of the way.  Smiling all of the way.  Some of these girls didn’t want to go but that didn’t mean they couldn’t do it.  They were real strong. 
Day 1 (Monday)
12:00 4th years and Leaders Check-in
Met all the 4th yr. girls by playing a get-to-know-you game.  The first girl says her name and then something about herself.  The second girl says her name and something about herself then repeats what the first girl said.  The third girl says her name and something about herself then repeats what the second girl said followed by what the first girl said.  And so on down until the last girl (28 total plus 5 leaders) repeats everything that was said.  
Here was our list...
Katrina is OBESSED with chocolate
Sara loves video games
Miriam loves purple
L’Nique can’t remember names
Mandi likes Sushi
Hannah likes Drama
Hannah likes Chinese
Emily is blonde inside and out
Bailey likes to dance
Breanna likes to hang out with her friends
Markell is in love with Justin Bieber
Sam is OBESSED with Taylor Lautner
Kalee is a DIVA
Maddie dances?
Alana likes Twilight and the Jonas Brothers
Allanah sings
Tara plays the piano
Elena lived in Mexico for a year
Ali likes to read
Melanie (was late and didn’t get to play)
Cassara (was late and didn’t get to play)
Adam is a NERD
Bro. Cohen is a COUGAR (BYU)
Sheri is not as young as she use to be
Paula likes to play
Staci likes to Snowboard
This is all I could remember.  After our game, choosing leaders for our group, and waiting for SLT to arrive...we were shuttled to the Mill Creek Trail.  
2:30 Overnight Hike
We went 2.3 miles the first day.  It was fairly easy.  And I say fairly because we did have to carry backpacks so it wasn’t a leisure walk in the park.  There was singing, chatting, laughing, picture taking, sweating, guzzling of water, snacking, and resting.  We got to our campsite and the girls spread out their tarps and sleeping bags.  We had some down time and some went exploring.  Some took a nap.  Some threw rocks in the lake.  

We played 2 relay games.  One with marshmallows and the other with mens underwear.  So funny.  We divided the girls into 2 teams.  For marshmallow game each girl had to lick one side of a marshmallow and stick it to her forehead.  Run down and around a marker and tag the next girl.  The team who finishes first wins.

For the Ginormous Underwear game 2 girls had to get in the underwear and run down and around a marker, get out of the underwear, and pass them to the next pair.  The team who finishes first wins.

We got Adam, a camp dad, to play the marshmallow game but Bro. Cohen didn’t want to play the underwear game.  I don’t blame him.  I had fun taking pics of the girls.  They had a lot of fun.
That night the girls made their own dinners which consisted of soupy spaghetti, chili mac and beef, really yummy beef stroganoff, and Spaghetti O’s.  

We had a fireside that night from Bro. Cohen about virtue and boys. Paula led us in a discussion about the stars and read from the scriptures.  I loved hearing the testimonies from the girls about times in their lives that they have felt the love of their Savior.   
That night was amazing sleeping under the stars.  There were so many.  We found many constellations.  I remember sleeping good enough to dream.  Then waking up and having to go to the bathroom really bad.  It was about 3:00am and I didn’t really get back to sleep.  
Day 2 (Tuesday)
The next morning we were up and out of camp at 8.  We made really good time.  Our hike got a bit harder with steeper hills and a few streams to cross.  

The girls did amazing.  They were hot and tired but I never heard anyone complain or whine.  I only knew of girl who got blisters but I didn’t find out about it until camp was over.  She was a trooper. We all got back to camp about 10:30.  
11:00 Check-in and set up camp
They got signed in and took all their belongings to their respective camps.  We would see them throughout the week but for the most part our leadership responsibilities were done.  We had a great time with them and getting to know them better.  One of our responsibilities was to give them all nicknames by the end of camp.  So now we got to sit back and observe them till Friday.
After getting gear put away, Paula and I headed straight for the showers.  Ahhh, to be clean for a few minutes.  It felt so nice.
Kennidy arrived with Emily Larkin and the rest of our ward.  She was placed in ‘Toddlers and Tiaras’ camp.  Kennidy was with her friends, Emma and Victoria.

I can’t remember too much of Tuesday but I know we did more than just shower.
12:00 Lunch
1:00 Opening Ceremony/Photos/Games
3:00 Certification
4:00 Free Time/Swim Test

5:30 Dinner
6:30 Campsite clean up
7:00 Solo Time
7:30 Get to know you games
8:00 Fireside & Flag Ceremony
Bridget Peterson was in charge of retiring old flags and burning them.  I have never seen this done but I was so touched by the Spirit testifying to me that this was truly a promised land.  That men and women give their lives to protect the freedoms we enjoy everyday.  How thankful I am to be an American.  To be at Girls’ Camp of my own free will.  
9:30 Canteen
11:00 Lights out
Paula and I were actually in bed by 10:30.  We were so tired from our day that it was lights out way before lights out.  The girls were all excited to finally be at camp that I don’t think they ended up going to bed until 1 or 2 am.
Day 3 (Wednesday)
5:40 Mountain Biking
Woke up way too early.  I took a bike ride with Paula, Emily, and Bridget.  It was mostly up hill and I didn’t get all the way to the top.  I felt kind of stupid.  Then Emily got a flat tire and she said she felt stupid but that was nothing compared to how stupid I felt.  Anyway...we ran and biked back to camp.  By the time we got back it was rise and shine. 
7:30 Stake Camp Mtg.
8:00 Morningside
8:30 Breakfast
9:15 Capers (fancy term for chores)
10:00 Conservation Project/Certification for 4th years
Paula and I went over first aid with the 4 years.  Then we sent them off to clean up the camp grounds.  They were done in about 15 minutes with their project...which meant early free time until lunch.
12:00 Lunch
2:00 Solo Time
2:30 Free Time
Bridget, Paula, and I climbed the Rock Wall.  It was fun.  I haven’t been rock climbing since before I was married.  I forgot how much fun it is.  Kennidy climbed twice.  The first time she only went up half way and after some gentle prodding she made it to the top on the harder side!  I was so proud of her for giving it another go.

We also tried our hand at the Archery Range where I got a bullseye!  Kennidy hit all over the page but I only made that one bullseye and never hit the paper.  I did get a really pretty bruise on my elbow.

5:00 Meal Prep in camps
6:00 Cook in camps 
We prepared foil dinners.  I love foil dinners.  And they were so yummy.  Carrots, potatoes, meat, onions!  Oooo, tasty.  Then we had cherry cobbler.  One made with chocolate cake and one with white.  I liked the white cake better.
7:30 Campsite clean sweep
8:00 Fireside on Swim Beach
Our theme for the day was Faith and Hope.  We heard from Bridget Peterson and Devree Hamblin.  We were entertained by 2 musical duets.  Both inspiring and beautiful.  After the spiritual thoughts, we gathered in a circle and each camp sang a song.  Then a closing prayer and the girls headed up to canteen.  As stake leaders lined the stairs up to camp, we sang a song for the girls called ‘Be Strong’. 
9:30 Canteen and last trash pull
10:30 Certification for 2nd and 4th years on Canoe Beach, Snipe Hunt
11:00 Lights out
I don’t think we went to be until 12:00.  It was cold and sitting by the fire felt so good.
Day 4 (Thursday)
6:00 Early Morning Hike
7:30 Stake Camp Mtg.
8:00 Morningside
8:30 Breakfast
9:15 Capers (fancy term for chores)
10:00 Testimony Building Round Robin
Paula and I spent this time coming up with nicknames for the 4th yr. girls.  Very successful and many thanks to YW leaders who were at camp, camp leaders, and brainstorming out loud.
12:00 Lunch
1:00 Solo Time
1:30 Certification/Service Project
Our service project was making Thank You cards for the Ronald McDonald House at St. Jude’s Hospital for Cancer patients.  The girls made 400 cards total.
4:00 Free Time
6:00 Campsite clean sweep
7:20 YCL Evening Devotional
8:00 Testimony Fireside
9:30 Canteen and last trash pull
9:45 Testimony mtg. continues in campsites
I was able to attend Kennidy’s camp fireside where the girls shared their testimonies.  Some weren’t members of the church but they had their own beliefs in God and it was touching to hear that they loved God and knew that God loves them.
11:00 Lights out
Day 5 (Friday)
6:00 Polar Bear Swim
Okay for the record...these girls and Sister Keele are AMAZING.  And CRAZY!  The Polar Bear Swim is when people jump in the lake in the early am and swim!  Bro. Cohen made a small bonfire so when the girls got out of the water they would have some place to keep warm.  Paula and I went to watch and cheer on those crazy girls.

7:00 Rise and Shine
7:30 Stake Mtg.
8:00 Morningside
We gave the 4th year girls their nicknames this morning.  So fun.  Here is the run down.  Thanks to all the leaders and YCL’s that gave us much needed info for each girl.  We couldn’t have come up with great names without your help.
Katrina is OBESSED with chocolate = Kachocolate
Sara loves video games, is always happy, and willing to help others = Jolly Rancher
Miriam loves purple,
L’Nique is so strong...a hidden strength that is refreshing to see = Snapple
Mandi (Amanda) every girl wants A.MAN.DA (a man to) = Kiss n’ Hug 
Hannah likes Drama and wanted to kill a bear with one stab = Cuchillada Oso
Hannah stepped on some wood chips that turned out to be a deep hole in a stream = PFD (Personal Floatation Device)
Katrina loves to talk because she thinks silence is boring = Walkie Talkie
Katie is awesome and can do things like change a tire all by herself = Rock Star
Cassie and Maddie were inseparable, these girls were constantly making us laugh = Lucy and Ethel
Emily is blonde inside and out = Flibberty-jibbet
Bailey has the most calming voice and smile = Serene
Breanna enjoys taking pictures = Ansel (Adams)
Markell is in love with Justin Bieber, so after they’re married in the temple, she’ll be called = Sis. Bieber
Samantha is OBSSED with Taylor Lautner = Lava Girl
Kalee is a DIVA but you can’t name yourself, she also has a ‘I can do anything’ attitude = Uncle Rico
Brook is a leader and when she says something...people listen = Pit Bull
Alana doesn’t like to do hard things but when asked she will do them = Esther
Allanah sings like an angel delivering heavenly news = Gabriel
Anna is OBSSED with knives = The Butcher
Tara can weave music into her dreams = Dreamweaver
Elena found the Little Dipper for the first time on our overnight hike = Little Dipper
Ali was an Archery Champ = Bullseye
Caitlin loves animals and love to help others = Gizelle
Melanie and Cassara were our sidekick beauties, always together = Daisy (Duke) and Buttercup (The Princess Bride)
Adam is a = NERD
Bro. Cohen always hikes in = HIGH TOPS
Sheri is not as young as she use to be = Superannuated
Let’s Eat!
8:30 Breakfast
9:15 Capers
10:00 Certification
12:00 Lunch
1:00 Solo Time
1:30 Free Time
3:00 Lake Swim/Mountain Biking
We rode around the lake to cheer on Bridget and the other girls making the lake swim.  Once there we found out that we were 1/2 hour early.  So we rode on and then returned to camp to cheer them on the return stretch.  Bridget did amazing.  All the girls did.  
4:00 Skit Rehearsal
5:15 Welcome Bishops & Ward Devotionals
6:00 Dinners with Wards
7:00 Skit Night
Our Stake Presidency is not afraid to go all out for Girls’ Camp.  They dressed up like Justin Bieber and lipsinked one of his songs!  So HILARIOUS!  I am trying to get my hands on the video.  I have never laughed so hard!  All the skits were so fun and the girls really got the message...Real Girls. Real Strong!
8:30 Canteen/Bishop’s Time
Bishop Heusser gave a great lesson on focusing and perspective.  Such a good lesson for all ages.  The girls in our ward are so blessed to have a Bishop who cares about the choices that they are making.  These girls are not alone in this great big scary world.  They have leaders all around them that love and are waiting to help them on their journey through this life.  They are so lucky.
11:00 Lights out
Day 6 (Saturday)
7:00 Rise and Shine
7:30 Breakfast to go and pack up
8:00 Morningside
9:00 Capers
10:00 Checkout
We were out of camp just before 10.  I had such a wonderful week.  I met some really strong girls.  I saw some incredible service.  I witnessed miracles.  I had time to reflect on my life...I didn’t like what I saw all the time but I hope that since seeing it...I will be able to make it better.  Stronger.  I hope that I will have the strength to make the choices that will please my Father.  Thus making me happy.