Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Moscow Weekend...

Once again we hit the road this weekend, with a late start Saturday morning. The Vandals were playing lacrosse in Missoula, MT on Saturday. We opted to skip this trip as we didn't want to drive the mountain pass thru snow again - been there done that.

Throughout our drive north we received texts from parents who made the trip from Northern Idaho to Montana, advising us of current game updates. The team was behind by two - the team scored - they scored again - Krieg had a picture perfect goal - Krieg had another goal - and the final score - Vandals win and Krieg had an amazing game... Dang!

We arrived in Moscow early enough to spend some time with Erin and her roommates, Chris2 (that's Chris squared as there are two of them). We went to a UI Women's hockey game, coached by Chris. Definitely not as rough and tumble as lacrosse but those ladies got into their game. It was fun to take a few pictures of them and post them on Facebook. They were as appreciative to see the pictures as the lacrosse players.

After hockey we met up with our wandering lacrosse players, Krieg and our "self appointed alternate son" Eric (Krieg's roommate), at the Alehouse for dinner. I was informed (with a wink and a smile) by Krieg, that he plays very well without Mom on the sidelines... he sure knows how to push my buttons. It was fun to sit and visit with the boys as well as Erin and Chris. Several of their friends dropped by to say hey too.

Sunday morning we headed for the Sprinturf next to the Kibbie Dome. The Vandals were hosting Gonzaga Bulldogs.

Yes, I have my favorite player(s). I take pictures throughout the game and share them with the team on Facebook. It makes me smile when I see them acknowledging their pictures. They "tag" themselves and then it's on their page to share with their own friends. Sometimes it's mere seconds from my uploading the pictures to the first acknowledgement.

This is a very special team of young men. They just seem to have made a connection with one another. It's a tight bond. You can't help but be proud of every one of them.

Though the game wasn't pretty, the Vandals got the win. The referees, perhaps not as professional as some we've had before, made lots of calls for penalties. The crowd didn't always agree. Thus the reason I take pictures down on the sidelines instead of sitting with my very loud daughter and vocal husband. It's all good...

Once the game was over, we headed back for Boise. It's always bittersweet leaving our kids behind.

This coming weekend we are staying home. We are trading in our lacrosse gear for birthday hats to celebrate Taten's 3rd birthday. His party was pushed from Saturday to a family event on Sunday. I scrambled to check airfare for a flight to Seattle so not to miss the Vandal game vs the Husky's... but at $300 for a 3 hour game, reality won. Birthday cake wins again!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Spring Break

16 game updates texted to long distance fans.
15 meals eaten on the road.
14 hours the team traveled on Saturday heading home.
13 I D A H O Idaho Idaho Go Go Go - cheered on the sidelines
12 times I wished Matt, Brit, Erin and Taten were with us.
11 family friends visited.
10 nights.
9 days of sunshine.
8 gas stops.
7 hours spent with Krieg.
6 family members visited.
5 nites with the Willis'.
4 trips to the Fitness Center.
3 amazing Vandal lacrosse games.
2 Naval Bases.
1 Earthquake.
2,618 miles from start to finish.
Unmeasuable amount of fun, laughs and memories created.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Productivity and Planning...

It was a productive weekend in our household. Our only weekend home this month.

Our monthly weigh in wasn't as successful as we wanted but given we've been on the road, and sick with various stages of the crud for over a month, we weren't surprised. The scale still dropped but not as much as I'd like. Just reinforces my return to my workout routine!

Mike made major progress moving items from our very cluttered, cozy, two car garage into his large, empty shop in the back yard. We took down some questionable shelves - just barely attached to the garage wall - and moved camping gear, storage items and yard supplies to a pair of very sturdy shelving units. Mike even took a load of saved wine bottles to the recycle bin. He kept what he needs for bottling the next two batches he is creating and the rest are gon-zo.

I worked my way around the yard with a rake and leaf bags. Our flower beds are clear of winter leaves and twigs and the grass shows encouraging signs of life. My shoulders are protesting a bit this week but it was so worth the effort. Now I can start picking my way around the flower beds pulling a few weeds.

We also managed a major clearing of dust bunnies, spills and grime from inside the house. Apparently our maid has taken on new clients and left us in the 'dust'... (just kidding - I would be the sort of person who would clean for the cleaning lady arrival.)

We started our list for our short week at home. I work all four days and Mike has a list of errands and chores to keep him out of trouble at home. Thursday he will pick me up after work and we will head south for Reno. Friday we will find ourselves in Lemoore, CA. We haven't been back since Erin was a baby. Sunday we will head f0r the San Diego area, meet up with Tonya, Dan and family for a week of vacation together, visit with our grandson Adam and his wife Alexis and see three lacrosse games. The University of Idaho boys are heading south this coming weekend too - to play Claremont McKenna College on Monday, SDSU on Wednesday night and UCSD on Friday night.

We are very excited to have this opportunity to return to California, visit with family and many friends AND watch our favorite Vandal team!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Peeesah and a Movie...

When our gang was much younger a favorite Saturday night dinner was making homemade pizzas. We made our dough, chopped up all of our favorite ingredients, and made our individual oddly shaped pizzas.

Taten loves pizza. When pizza commercials come on TV, Tate comes running into the room yelling "Peeeesah". When he's asked what he wants to eat, his answer... "peeesah".

It only seemed natural to have our own pizza and movie night. We watched "Where the Wild Things Are". I was surprised at how Taten followed the movie, laughing when the character joked and played.

I think it went very well.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Weekend in Portland...

This weekend found us on the road again - que sorpresa!

After an incredible series of odd events my work day was over, the car loaded, Matt finished and we headed west for Portland with Matt, Brit and Taten.

The road was "dry and dusty" - the trip uneventful. We tracked progress with the boy's team, as well as Erin and Chris, making the trip from Northern Idaho. Our only hiccup occurred about 50 miles from Portland when we drove through pounding rain and standing water on the road.

We arrived about 10:30pm local time and settled in quickly. The boys were hosted by two of the team's Portland families. Thank you Harringtons and Ballards. You are truly all stars. Erin and Chris stayed closer to downtown and met up with friends.

Saturday morning arrived sunshine, beautiful temperatures and news of a Tsunami advisory for the Oregon Coast. Honestly, it seems adventure follows us wherever we go!

We met up with our Oregon family in Gresham for breakfast before going our separate ways. Erin, Chris and friends went to the Portland Zoo. We were joined by Jorgan and Savannah on a trip to Tillamook. We have never been and wanted to try something different.

The drive over was so pretty. There wasn't much activity in the cheese factory but we enjoyed looking around and had fun together. Besides - there was ice cream at the end! Who can say no to ice cream?

The kids returned to Portland with the little ones for an evening of swimming at the hotel. Mike and I headed to Corvallis for the lacrosse game at Oregon State University.

Corvallis has interesting road signage - At least not what we are accustomed to seeing. Perhaps Oregonians are just more insightful or better prepared. The signs to make the turn are AT the turn - no warning. Between the signage and my squeaky navigator voice, we made a few trips through town and around campus despite our maps instructions and GPS.

The Vandals had a nice sized cheering section - over 30 family and friends out to support them at the game played in the stadium under the lights. Erin and Chris arrived and we even tried to convert Brandy and her son TJ. Very exciting game. The team stayed close - within two goals - and outscored the Beavers in the 3rd quarter though still behind.

The fourth quarter went back and forth. I noticed the Oregon coach behaving very agitated. We were sitting behind the score table and asked what was the score. It was 10-9 OSU over Vandals. There were just minutes left in the game and the Idaho boys put one in the goal to tie it up. Game time ran out and we went into overtime.

It was a big deal for this team. They've come a long way. Vandals really have an amazing combination of talent and ambition this year. Oregon State has twice as many players (fresh legs during the game) and have beat Idaho soundly in previous years.

The ball went up and down the field a few times but wound up in the crease, unfortunately - a game winning goal for the Beavers 11-10. Our boys were heartbroken. It was clear they wanted this game. They truly gave it everything they had and this Momma Bear just wanted to make it better. I've never seen Krieg emotional after a loss until now.

We arrived back to Portland about 11pm. The kids had Taten tucked into bed. He tired himself out with Savannah in the pool.

Sunday morning Tate woke with a full blown case of Croup. He felt great. No fever. They dosed him up with cough meds and Tylenol. He talked non-stop of seeing his "Tio" and Ah-Boo (Auntie Boo). We forged on with our plans to attend the lacrosse game at Portland State where we were joined by the Oregon Shaw's. We were a cheering section of 18 total - just for Krieg! With the rest of the traveling crowd, Vandals definitely had some noise!

It wasn't our weekend for maps or directions. Portland State campus is DOWNTOWN. The field we were to find was hidden between a square of buildings - surrounded by construction. Cars park downtown in parking spots which appear to be a lane of traffic stopped at a light. Yes, we sat more than once behind an empty parked car... and despite our efforts, we still ended up with a parking ticket (though anything short of having my car booted would have been doable at that point)!
The Ore-Ida Shaw Cheering Section with Krieg

Game temperatures were in the 60's and the sun was warm. The Vandals played great. They stayed in control for most of the time, though allowed PSU a few goals narrowing the gap, but a victory was in the air for Idaho with a 9-8 win over Portland State.

Once back in the car, Tate was struggling. We stopped at an Urgent Care to have him checked. Sure didn't want to be out in the middle of nowhere with him having trouble breathing. We left with a diagnosis of Croup and Bronchitis and RX to fix him up. The lungs were still clear.

I honestly think the congestion we were all experiencing had as much to do with the local foliage being in bloom as the crud we have shared in our household. Our sudden increase in symptoms seemed a bit coincidental with our arrival. However, the flowering trees and daffodils were gorgeous!

Our 2am arrival back in Boise was welcoming. Even more grateful to know I didn't have to work Monday and a nap was on my "to do" list.