Thursday, February 27, 2014

Hitting a Writing Wall

Nobody said this was going to be easy, but I didn’t really see this sort of complication coming about. I write for a parenting blog that doesn’t pay a lot but will usually take whatever I submit. In the past I wrote sparingly because I usually focused on other things, but when my financial circumstance became anemic, I figured I could just up my production for the parenting site. They tended to take most, if not all, of what I wrote. I just didn’t write a whole lot.

I started writing like crazy and my increased output just happen to coincide with all the other writers ramping up their work, as well. Now the editor has informed me that she’s inundated with material and can’t take it all. What a bummer.

Personally I think this is a test of my resolve. Someone is trying to tell me to stop looking for the quick and easy fix and get my glorious freelance career on track. I want to take the easy path, but forces are conspiring against me. Looks like I’m going to have to do something with my life.

Until then, thanks for reading, and thanks to bernhard.grau for the pic.

Jumping Through Hoops

A week or so back we managed to have A’s best friend over for a sleepover, and it was quite the three-ring circus just to make it happen. There were complications on top of complications, and the date kept getting pushed back farther and farther to the point where I felt like we should have just dropped the whole ordeal. A, however, will not be denied, and we continued to hash out a plan.

One big complication is that her friend’s parents are divorced, and each parent has a new set of mates, so there is the issue of who is in possession of the kids, and what their feelings are about the sleepover. Another complication is that each parent doesn’t necessarily approach parenting in the same manner, and in trying placate one set, you stand to alienate another. There are also some behavior issues, but I won’t go into that.

The final piece of the puzzle was that N is buddies with said friend’s brother, so he wanted to have him over, as well. We had done this in the past, having both kids over, and it was fun. They’re great kids, I really like both of them, and it’s fun for them to hang over. This was not, however, to be part of the plan. For reasons that elude me, there was a strong inclination for the kids to be separated. We kept suggesting that we’d like both kids over, but it was met with quiet disinclination, if that’s even a word. It was a little baffling, compounded by the fact that neither side would just come out and say what they wanted.

In the end, the plan was spelled out to us. She would come to us, and N would go them. It worked out fine, N had expressed a desire to go over there, and A was stoked to have her buddy over. All’s well that ends well, right?

Well, sort of. Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to Andre Hagenbruch for the pic.

Beggars Can’t Be Choosers, Right?

A few weeks back I spoke with a friend of mine who said he’d get me some ski passes to a local ski hill, and that he’d bring them to the next practice. Our sons are the same age and I mentioned that it would be fun for them to ski together. He works there, and this offer came about unprompted by me, so you can imagine how pleasantly surprised I was.

Well, as luck would have it (or should I say bad luck?), on the day of the next practice, we had this massive snowfall that closed schools and hockey practice. My friend didn’t show up to the rink, and we didn’t get our ski passes. Total bummer. I figured that maybe I’d see him the next day or even the next week, and he’d give them to me.

Of course, that didn’t happen. For whatever reason, we never crossed paths, and a couple of weeks went by and I never saw him, even though I saw his son all the time. Either him mom brought him, or I’d just miss my friend. I could have left it at that, but I decided instead to email him and just casually mention the passes and if they were still a possibility. Yes, it was a little shameless, but when you’re trying to save money, especially for something as extravagant as skiing, you’ll go to great lengths.

Well, I ended up seeing him the next day at practice, and he said he’d leave two passes for me at the desk. The problem was, I was bringing three people: myself, N, and A. I wanted to ask for three passes, but couldn’t do it. I was too embarrassed, and figured I’d just by one ticket for myself, maybe a half-day.

Here is where the irony kicks in. We usually ski on Mondays when they have this amazing deal. The cost of buying one ticket for myself on Wednesday was more than buying tickets for all three of us on Monday. I hate when that happens. I was bummed, no doubt, but couldn’t really complain. The skiing was amazing, it had snowed the day before, and conditions were stellar, the best all season. Plus, N got to ski with his buddy, AG, whose dad works there, as well. I think A was not as thrilled since none of her friends were there, and at her age, it’s all about being with her friends, but we had a nice day, nonetheless.

I learned a lesson in that getting something for free isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be. If only I’d have gotten that third pass, but beggars can’t be choosers, right? Just have to be happy with what you got.

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to fimonfabre for the pic.

Massive Snow

It might not be Quebec, but we’re getting there. We woke a couple of weeks back to a massive snowfall that came down the night before while we were sleeping. When we went to bed, there was a decent layer of snow on the ground, but at some point during the evening it must have really come down because it looked like two feet of snow on the ground.

Naturally the kids were thrilled, and spent a couple of hours in the snow doing amazing things. It’s nice that A isn’t too old (not yet) to get out and have fun with N, though that time is approaching. Such is the life of adolescents.

It looks amazingly beautiful out here, a winter wonderland if there ever was one, and it finally looks like winter in New England. It also means that the skiing is good, but more on that later

Until then, thanks for reading.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Schoolhouse Rock

It’s crazy to think that with all this hockey, there are other things in life going on, as well. The kids have been doing school work all year long, and when you begin a grade, you can’t imagine that you’ll ever get through it. Then, several months later, you’ve gotten through it.

I only bring this up because both A&N are cruising along their respective grades, or should I say, closing out this year? One thing I’ve noticed about homeschooling is you can finish a school year, do about a month of review, and then move onto the next grade. The goal is not to accelerate the kids, but left to their own devices, they tend to learn at a faster clip than what you see in school. For N, this is particularly gratifying because he was so resistant to doing school work and always put up a fight.

Now he not only willingly does his work, but he often does more than is asked of him, and will even be motivated to the point where he doesn’t feel he can begin his day without finishing his assignments. How cool is that? Enough to bring a tear to my eye. Don’t get me wrong, given the choice he’d much rather be outside playing or watching TV, but we’ve come a long way from the early days of doing battle and butting heads... not that that doesn’t still happen. It’s just a lot less frequent.

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to Rob Shenk for the pic.

Feeling Weary

A’s hockey season will continue onto the championship weekend, and I think her team is the favorite to win it all. N’s team, on the other hand, lost last weekend and their season effectively ended. I think the kids had a good attitude about it all, they were a little bummed, as they should be, but they also took it in stride and moved on with their lives immediately, again, as they should.

Looking back on it, it’s amazing N’s team even made it that far. A’s team has won all season and has been, probably from the get-go, the favorite to win it all. N’s team, on the other hand, lost the first 10-12 games, and never really recovered to have a winning season. By the time the state tournament rolled around, they were suddenly a force to contend with, and won all three games of the preliminary round to make it to the next round. There, they won all three games to qualify for the semifinals, which was an impressive feat considering the season they had.

Time caught up with them, however, and in the semifinals, they were beaten by what was a better team, no question. They played great, but N’s team is simply at a huge disadvantage in that they have several players who would have been better off playing on a house team, or someplace where they could first learn how to play hockey. I’m guessing some of them had never played before, and some seemed to have never skated before. A house team is a kinder, gentler program where they can learn the basics before making the jump into a travel program.

Whatever be the case, when you go up against a team with 5 solid players on the ice, you don’t stand a chance. They put up a valiant effort, but the writing was on the wall. It was a lot of fun, and I think the kids did a great job out there, but it was emotionally draining. The last couple of weeks of hockey are always a marathon, and it’s not even over. There is still spring hockey and more tournaments.

I have to admit to feeling a little weary. I know several families who are getting ready for the next stage of hockey, which can go well into summer, which is crazy when you think about it. I’m ready to get my tennis racket out. I’m glad N has his new mountain bike, and I think we’ll do some riding as soon as the snow melts.

Until then, thanks for reading, and thanks to Darcy Knoll for the pic.

New Focus

As much as I love hockey, I feel like we need to find a new focus in life. I think it’s great the kids love the game so much, but part of that is the social aspect. Both kids have made a lot of friends through the game, and they have that one common bond that helps them relate. Sports, at least in my opinion, are limited in how much they can hold a friendship together. At some point something more substantial needs to connect two people. When I was a kid, my best friends played sports, but somehow we had much more in common than just a game. If anything, we all played different sports and had different interests, we just went to school together and somehow connected.

I think that’s what’s happening with A. She enjoys hockey but would enjoy another sport just as much if she was surrounded by her friends. Hockey just requires total dedication and a lot of time, so it affords her an opportunity to solidify her friendships. The fact that she’s pretty good helps to give her some clout, and she’s a very sociable person. Consequently, she’s made some good friends, and has even made a best friend.

N is a little more complicated. Maybe it’s a boy thing, but he’s a little more reserved, and tends to sit quietly on the sidelines and watch. He benefits from being a good athlete, so he earns credibility from his peers, but that’s not always a foundation for long term friendship. I was a athlete in school, and hung out with jocks, and looking back on it, I never really felt a close connection to any of those guys, especially the alpha-male leaders. I had a similar experience being in a frat in college, and wonder why I put myself into these situations.

Either way, I think with N it’s great that he loves sports and we will support him in any way as long as he enjoys it, but I wouldn’t mind steering him in other directions. I’m thinking something more cerebral and thoughtful that he can immerse himself in and find other kids that think and operate like he does. As good as he is at sports, I don’t think he fits the jock mold. I could be projecting my own neurosis (what else is new?), but the jock crowd is filled with aggressive and vindictive guys who can be bullies and treat women poorly. Being a sensitive and thoughtful person doesn’t always bode well in that environment. I know this from firsthand experience.

Besides, as much as I want him to enjoy sports, I don’t want him to become a “jock” who can’t think for himself and goes along with whatever the crowd does. Even though these are the kind of guys who go on to become CEOs of big companies, I would rather that he think for himself and chart his own course. Plus, hockey gets so fanatical, and I succumb to it, even though I look at it like complete insanity.

With that in mind, we begin the search for N’s new gig. Truth be told, I think it will somehow involve computers, because he, like very kid his age, is fascinated by them. This process, however, will not include video games or social networking, but something more along the lines of programming or computer science. Then again, when you embark on a journey of discovery, you have to keep your mind open to all the possibilities.

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to Michael Dales for the pic.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Gaining Perspective

Several years back we ran into some drama with some friends of ours and I still look back on it with a sour taste in my mouth. I am convinced there was some spite and malice involved in the other party, mainly the mom, and believe me when I tell you that this goes beyond conspiracy theory.

Either way, life goes one, and A was the only one who had a level head and didn’t make a big deal out of it. Kudos to her for her dignity and pride, even though as a parent I felt outraged. Then again, it’s good to know who you’re dealing with for future interactions.

Fast forward to today, and one of the girls on her team had a birthday party and didn’t invite A. This would not have been an issue if she hadn’t invited all the older girls on the team, thereby making it apparent that A was being excluded. Was this intentional? Who can say, but is sure seemed deliberate, and this girl definitely has a mean and vindictive streak in her and has targeted other girls for various reasons. Just a Mean Munchkin (MM), which is an appropriate moniker if there ever was one.

Anyway, we found out about the birthday through third-party channels, and as usual, I was so bummed. A, on the other hand, was so level headed, and didn’t make a big deal out of it. Now I have to acknowledge that A might not (probably) doesn’t get along with the MM. Then again, it’s generally acknowledged by people that know the MM that she’s mean, and also accepted by objective third party observers (i.e., not me) that A is not a mean kid.

One of the very-involved parents supports both these notions, and passed along the theory that the MM doesn’t like A because A is one of the few girls that stands up to her and defends the targets of her wrath. Being A’s father, of course I prefer this theory.

Whatever be the case, after ruminating and torturing myself over this, I talked it over with R and obtained some perspective, and in the end, it’s probably not all that I’ve made it out to be. Sure, I do think there was some deliberate thought to excluding A, but girl in question has every right to invite whom she pleases. Also, as I mentioned, why would she invite someone she doesn’t get along with?

The problem arises when that person is my daughter, but I also don’t want to make a big deal about it if A is okay with it, and she is. What complicated this whole situation was that A was having a friend over for a sleepover, and that friend was going to the party. After the party, we had planned on going to the HS hockey game, and the entire b-day party was going, as well. Talk about bad timing. However, A wanted to go, she didn’t care about the party, and I was proud of her for not making an issue out of this and wanting to just move on. She didn’t have any hard feelings to the MM, either. Talk about a Zen Master, what a cool kid she is.

There’s more to this story, but for now I’ll leave it at that. Thanks for reading, and thanks to Dianne Collins for the pic.

Second Day of Hockey

As much as I love hockey, sometimes I wonder if it’s too much pressure on the kids to win when we have these big tournaments that focus so much on being the best. Does it really matter? The hockey powers seem hypocritical in that they stress having fun and discourage intense competition, and then set up these situations where kids feel disappointed and at times devastated.

Then again, winning and losing are good lessons to learn, and ones they’ll experience throughout their lives, so maybe it’s better to learn them in sports in preparation for when you experience them in life. Whatever be the case, we had a great weekend of hockey, mainly because the outcomes were in our favor. The fact that we are playing again this weekend was completely dependent upon how we did this past weekend, and suffice it to say we did well.

There were 15 teams vying to play in the next round, and they had to whittle that group down to 8. Our odds were decent, but we approached it by wanting to do the best we could, especially in light of how we did all season, which was pretty poorly. In case you’re just tuning in, we lost a majority of our games all season, and it wasn’t until the last quarter that we actually started winning some games. Truth be told, we probably played opponents that were above our level (clearly this was the case), and now the tournament, we are seeded with teams that are more on our level. Maybe having a tough schedule was good in that it prepared us for this situation.

Last weekend was going to be a challenging one because we were playing teams that controlled us all season. We managed to win all of our games and advance, which was really cool. The kids are excited, the parents are excited, and we get to play one more weekend of hockey. Of course, this coming weekend will determine if we make it to the championship game, and I like to think that it’s cool we made it this far and that the outcome doesn’t matter.

I may have to keep reminding myself of this. Until then, thanks for reading, and thanks to Katherine Abrahams for the pic.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Scraping to Watch the Olympics

How do you watch the Olympics when you don’t have a TV or cable subscription? Painfully, that’s how. Aside from the occasional fortuitous timing of catching it in a hotel lobby or an appliance store, you’re out of luck. We tried a VPN connection that allowed us to connect with an international carrier, thereby bypassing domestic NBC blocking, but that didn’t work out so well. With the VPN connection we were able to stream onto Canadian (CBC) and even British (BBC) networks, and could have utilized any country in the world, but the connections were terrible.

This past weekend we watched a bit on TV during a break in N’s hockey tournament, but that was short-lived, and the kids got bored pretty quickly. Finally a friend of ours who is a techie told us about a way to connect through the internet and basically watch international TV, i.e., watch normal broadcast TV from another country. In this case, it’s Canada.

It was a little involved in terms of tweaking our network settings, which I am not totally comfortable with, but decided to give it a try. Lo and behold, it worked, and we have been able to watch the Olympics. The other night we watched ice dancing, and yesterday we watched women’s hockey and bobsledding. Then last night the kids watched acrobatic ski jumping, which I know speaks to N’s heart. It’s cool to watch the Olympics, but truth be told, I am somewhat ambivalent about them, and always have been. When I was a kid, I didn’t pay much attention to the Olympics, especially the Winter Olympics, save a for a few events. I wasn’t even that interested in hockey back then.

Now I find the spectacle more entertaining, and think it’s nice for the kids to see. On the whole, I could take it or leave it, which works out well when you don’t have TV.

Anyway, the kids are interested in certain events, and it is rather entertaining watching Canadian TV. The commercials are different, and the coverage is more objective, not all flash and rock-and-roll like American coverage. There are times the CBC covers banal and mundane activities, like crews preparing the field for competition, or the audience sitting in the stands. This is in marked contrast with the American approach, which would never show that stuff and would fill every available moment with something entertaining. Anything to boost ratings. I’m guessing CBC is like the BBC, state run and not as profit-oriented, so they can afford to do what they want. I could be wrong.

For now, we can follow the games, and we’ll probably watch more hockey and skiing, which we enjoy. We may even catch the closing ceremony, which we haven’t seen in the past two or three Olympics. It could be interesting.

Until then, thanks for reading, and thanks to MakeMy UK for the pic.

Big Hockey Weekend

Then again, every weekend is a big hockey weekend, right?

Hockey may be coming to an end, but it’s not quite over. This past weekend the state tournament started, which is basically a big playoff that determines the state champions. I have mixed feelings about the whole thing, because the hockey powers seem discourage this obsession with winning and being a superstar, and then they organize this big tournament that pits all the teams against each other to see who is the best and who will be champion.  
If that’s not enough, they employ a ranking system where teams benefit from driving up the score, because one criteria for advancing is how many goals you score and how few you allow. In an ideal situation, you would score one goal each period and hold the other team to none, but it’s not easy discouraging kids from scoring goals.

Either way, A did not have games this weekend, much to her dismay, but N had his first round. His division is pretty big, they had to trim 17-18 teams down to 8, so they held “playdowns” in four separate locations. We were in Manchester, and his team did well. They won all three games, N scored goals in all three, and I think they came out on top. They even defeated a team that has beaten them all season long, so it was a big weekend.

They played on Saturday and Sunday, so a lot of people got hotel rooms and stayed overnight. Normally we’d jump at the chance, but it would have meant several hundred dollars in expenses, and the ride was only about 1.5 hours long. Not great, but not horrible. It helped that the games were later in the morning.

A was not as enthused about sitting through hours of her brother’s hockey games, so we arranged for her to hang with ES for the day. K&PS were nice enough to host her for the entire day, which worked out nicely because they haven’t seen each other in awhile, and they are always trying to connect. Me, R and N piled into the car and headed to Manchester. Despite the distance, it’s a nice drive, and Manchester is a nice town. The games were fun, R took lots of pics, and then she went to a meeting with a colleague who actually lives in Manchester.

We had 5 hours between games, so GG arranged for us to hang out in a conference room nearby, where they ordered pizza, drinks, and snacks, and they had this big-screen TV where the kids watched the Olympics. I brought my computer and got some work done, and then the kids eventually went outside and had a massive snowball fight.

At some point R returned from her meeting and she, N, and I went into town to check out the local bookstore and just move around. It was also nice to get away from the TV, which really turns your brain to mush. I can’t believe the garbage they put on, or rather, that we watch. A funny thing was that because we separated from the group, we were unaware that we were supposed to get back early, or I guess I forgot, because when we returned, everyone was on the ice and ready to go. We scrambled to get dressed and played the second game, which was the biggie against our rival. We won, and N had a beautiful goal, again.

It was an awesome day of hockey, but the weekend wasn’t over. As I mentioned, several families were spending the night in town, but we opted to drive home to save money. It was snowing on the ride home, and we had to drive through mountains, past Bromley and Stratton, so the driving was slow. We went to ES to pick up A, then home to bed. We had to wake up the next day for another day of hockey, but that’s a story for another time.

Until then, thanks for reading, and thanks to Matthew Paulson for the pic. 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Happy Valentine’s Day

I realize this is late, but I hope everyone had a nice Valentine’s Day. Ours turned out nicely, and it was a little last minute, but we pulled it off. We usually don’t make a big deal about days like these, and focus on the rest of our lives, but you can’t really completely ignore it, especially when it is your wedding anniversary, too.

R and I hadn’t talked much about what we were going to do, but as the day approached, the kids and I decided on a few surprises. We had a pretty uneventful Christmas, so that made it nice to do more on V-day. Maybe since Spring is in the air, we’re feeling a bit more optimistic and upbeat.

I dropped the ball on Christmas and didn’t do our regular gift giving routine. It’s not much, but one thing that’s really nice is making collages of the big events the previous year, which of course includes travel. It’s a nice way to reflect on the year and also to preserve the memories. What’s nice about it is the kids have a lot of fun making them, so they get involved, and R loves them. For the record, the kids did a nice job. We also got her flowers and chocolate, and the kids made cards for her, which for the record were amazing, as usual.

The plan for the day was to go to play in the snow, or should I say the kids played in the snow and I shoveled the driveway. It took me about 2 hours just to clear out the cars, there was so much snow. I haven’t even done the path the firewood, yet. Either way, we also had hockey, and then afterward some supper at Boloco. Another reason to love Boloco was they were televising Olympic hockey so we got to actually catch some of the games. We had tickets to the Dartmouth women’s hockey game, but since we had to travel early the next morning, we gave them away and opted to do things closer to home. We also got our favorite cake from Lou’s, the chocolate mousse cake, for after supper.

It was a beautiful night, and the snow was perfect. They groomed the XC ski trails and it was a full moon. The weather was cloudy and snowy all day, but by evening the clouds parted and the skies were beautiful and clear. We put on our gear and had a late night XC family ski, and at one point we turned off our headlamps and skied by moonlight. I was exhausted from a long day of shoveling and hockey, but couldn’t pass up the chance to ski with R and the kids, at night no less. Did I mention it was a gorgeous night?

We had a blast, and came home and watched a family movie, Tootsie. The kids were somewhat ambivalent about it, I think we should have gone with Harry Potter, but it didn’t really matter, because it was getting late, and we had to get to bed.

All in all, we had a nice Valentine’s Day, despite my cynicism about such holidays. It just goes to show you, it’s not what you do, but who you do it with.

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to Cake Creations by Shelly for the pic.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Free Magazines

I found a way to save money on magazines while not only reading them, but reading more of them - the library. I knew this all along, but never really took full advantage of it. Our local library tends to turn over some of favorites pretty regularly, including the New Yorker and the Atlantic, and I find them all the time in the recycling bin. Plus, you can check out the issue that came out previous to the current issue, so you read the stuff a week late, but that’s not a problem, especially with a magazine like the New Yorker or the Atlantic. Even news magazines like Time are fine a week late, I have no problem with it.

This has been working out beautifully because I come home with an armful of them and have tons or reading material. Most of them, with the exception of the New Yorker and Atlantic, I can read in a couple of hours, then take them back. We save money and there’s less waste. I love when that happens.

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to Patricia Meyer for the pic.

Snowball Effect

We had a pretty impressive snowstorm last week, and it sort of disrupted our plans, but not completely. We must have received a foot of snow, which is great when you consider that it’s been a pretty disappointing winter so far. We had some snow early on, and then nothing. On a bright note, we’ve saved a ton of money on snowplowing costs, so we can save up for that tractor we’ve always dreamed about... yeah, right.

The forecast called for a big storm mid-week, and sure enough, the snow came. It was really cool because it snowed all day and night. School was cancelled but not hockey. N had practice in the evening, and the right after I had a game, so the kids were forced to stay and watch, which I’m sure bored them to death. We got home later than I expected, and they were tired and hungry, but fortunately R stayed home and prepared supper, so we had a hot meal and warm fire waiting for us.

One negative consequence of the storm was that a limited number of people showed up for practice, including my friend who said he’d bring me some ski passes. I was looking forward to this because the conditions are really nice, and we’d love to hit the slopes. Oh well, these things happen. If I’m really lucky, he will remember the next time I see him. If not, then that’s just how it was meant to be. Bummer, right?

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to Sami AlBanna for the pic.

Close to the Finish

If you can believe this, we are in our final weekend of hockey, at least for the regular season. Unbelievable. The kids have a few games this weekend, and then next week we begin the state tournament, which is a bit of a marathon, but sort of marks the end of hockey.

We all view this with a bit of mixed emotions. On the one hand, it signals that winter is exiting and spring is on the way, which is nice. On the other hand, it means hockey is over, which is a bummer, but it’s good to get away and get some perspective, especially when you’re surrounded by rabid parents who want their kids to play in the NHL.

The last few weeks get really crazy because there is so much going on, so it ain’t over yet.

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to jayneandd for the pic.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Realized What I Was Doing Wrong

In my quest to kick-start my glorious freelance writing career, I have been looking into freelance copywriting opportunities through different avenues. One of them is Flexjobs, which is some sort of matching service that has gotten mixed reviews. I paid $14 and joined for a months.

I was hooked into a few jobs that I thought I was fairly qualified for and got rejected, when I realized that I was doing it all wrong. The site is fairly involved, and I guess there are introductory courses on how to get started, all of which I seemed to have ignored. As a consequence, my profile wasn’t complete, and though I can’t say for sure why I didn’t get certain jobs, it probably didn’t help that I didn’t have all my information on file.

Part of the reason I was motivated to do so was there are definitely jobs out there that look interesting and are realistic possibilities. I’m sort of excited about the prospects, but it’s way too soon to express optimism. Stay tuned for more.

In the meantime, I’m getting lots of experience in hunting for jobs. I’m not always sure what to make of it all, but it’s a learning experience, and that’s always a good thing. It keeps the brain running.

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to Javier Castellano for the pic.

Tiki Torch and Busy Saturday

Last week we had quite a day on Saturday, culminating in the Tiki Torch Trek, which is a family favorite. Both A and N had consecutive hockey games, which I helped coach and R took pics of. Then we stayed for the older kids game so R could take more pics. After that, we headed over to the big city to watch the movie premier of the Lego Movie at Dartmouth. I had packed a lunch and we ate in the car on the ride over.

We got to Hanover early, so we hung out at the library for about an hour. During this time I jetted over to Sterns to get veggies and then Price Chopper for other essentials, then stopped at Stateline to get my skates sharpened. Of course, I forgot to pick up my skates and had to go back, but that’s another story. Back in the big city, we took the kids to the movie and then R and I went to grab a bite to eat at Boloco, but since I forgot my skates, I went back to Stateline while R at her salad and we met up at the bookstore.

We relaxed for a bit then picked up the kids, only to jet back in time for the Tiki Torch Trek. The weather was good, but not great. We were planning on feasting at the party, but we got there a little late and the food was running out. I managed to scarf down a couple of roast beef wraps and a bowl of clam chowder, but I wanted more! The sweets were running low, as well, and we donated several baked items, none of which we got to eat.

Oh well, we took one for the good of the community, and that’s fine by me. The Trek was fun, we saw several of our hockey and neighbor friends, so it was really nice. Then we got home and went straight to be so we could be ready for the next day of hockey. What else is new?

Until the next time, thanks for reading, and thanks to s.v.ceceline for the pic.