And the race is on...........gymnastics season has begun.....
Last weekend we kicked off the competition season with a trip to the Cities for a mock meet. It wasn't like any meet we've ever attended. The girls were judged by certified judges, however in lieu of actual scores, they received valuable feedback on where and why they are receiving deductions in their routines, and what they need to do to improve their scores.
The beam lived up to it's nickname, the BBB (big, bad beam), for most of our girls, but all rallied on the their floor and vault routines. Miss J looked awesome on vault and floor, and although bars are her favorite apparatus, she now knows there is room for improvement. We have little over a month before the next meet, so the coaches, armed with the valuable information that was collected last weekend, will use this time to make improvements in the aforementioned areas.
A Blast From the Past Christmas.....
Updating lately has been challenge to say the least. Fall is quickly becoming my least favorite season as it is my busy time at work. (I use the term "busy" rather loosely! It's more overwhelming than anything!) The fall semester thankfully came to an end and things have all but ground to a halt. With the gymnastics season upon us, I figured I better get on the ball and update my blog.
Recently Miss J had her Christmas program at school. They did a rendition of Christmas throughout the decades. She wisely chose the 50s era as she already had the costume from Halloween. Mom was thankful!
>> Posted by KJ at 12:57 PM |
The Wizard of Odd......
In the summer county fairs pop up all over the landscape. The kick-off to the Marshall County fair is the annual parade. Businesses and organizations from all over the region line up to cruise down the small town streets. My godfather's company is no exception. I am certain that they must plan their float theme at least six months in advance. This year's theme was the Wizard of Oz....or rather the Wizard of Odd! (Yep, that's him, in the dress, with the little dog in the basket!) Following the parade we took Miss J to the midway to ride some rides, have some dinner, and of course enjoy some fair treats!
>> Posted by KJ at 11:01 AM |
Chicago...........the band......not the city.....
Since I was a small child music was prevalent in our house. My parents were products of the 60s and rock was the genre of choice. I attribute my love of classic rock to the many hours the turn table cranked out The Doobie Brothers, The Moody Blues, The Guess Who, Bread, and the like. One band in particular was everyone's favorite....Chicago. Currently I think I own every Chicago album and song ever written.
Recently my mom, dad, Miss J, Sister K, and myself packed into the car and headed south to Stillwater where Chicago was to perform at Lumberjack Days. It was hotter than Hades in the park and we waited for what seemed like an eternity, but the show was one of the best I've seen. They did not disappoint performing for over two hours. After over four decades on the music scene they have not lost their spark and it is evident why old fans stay loyal and the band has gained a new generation of followers.
>> Posted by KJ at 9:21 AM |
The Haymarket in Huskerville....
During our recent road trip to Lincoln, I had an entire afternoon to explore the city's Historic Haymarket district. One of Lincoln's oldest neighborhoods, the Haymarket is a historic warehouse and industrial district. In recent decades, it has become a dining, specialty shopping, and urban living district, with a variety of visual and performing arts and nightlife.
>> Posted by KJ at 9:22 AM |
Dorm Rooms, Dances, and an Old Friend...
Camp at the University of Nebraska was a big hit. Miss J had a great time staying in the dorms, eating in the cafeteria, meeting new gymnasts, and hanging out with current teammates. We attended skit night and the wrap-up session the last day of camp where her group performed a dance routine they had been working on all week.
Miss J also was reunited with her former teammate and pre-competitive coach, Laura, who attends UNL and competes for the Husker gymnastics team. Laura was named NCAA All American this year on floor and vault and it was a thrill for Miss J to spend time with her.
We were glad to be home after a long 8+ hour drive. Gym dad was especially excited to see his girls home just in time for Father's Day.
>> Posted by KJ at 8:08 AM |
Waking up in Huskerville....
Yesterday four girls, two women and a mountain of luggage set out on a drive that included everything from long stretches of construction and pouring rain to back seat karaoke. After eight and a half hours we arrived at our hotel next to the University of Nebraska campus. Today I woke up in Lincoln, Nebraska.
This afternoon we dropped off our gymnasts at a five day camp at UNL. The dorm rooms were small, but the girls were excited.
>> Posted by KJ at 10:23 PM |
I suppose it is about time for an update. After the gymnastics meet season ended we basically went into hibernation. It has been wonderful to take some time off from the weekly grind of traveling and have been chillin' at home. My house is actually clean and once the ground dries up, the garden should be ready for planting. We soon will be able to spend weekends at the lake enjoying the nice summer weather--provided that summer temperatures return to the area soon!
Our gymnastics club recently held a Mini Meet. A Mini Meet is an opportunity for gymnasts in the pre-competitive program to show off to mom and dad, grandma and grandpa, and the rest of the family what they've been learning throughout the season. Our current competitive gymnasts also get a chance to level up and perform new skill sets and routines. It is always entertaining to watch the three year olds perform!
>> Posted by KJ at 1:19 PM |
The North Dakota Level 5 All Around Gold Medalist! Gym Dad and I couldn't be more proud!
225 girls competed this weekend in the North Dakota State Gymnastics Championships. It was a weekend full of excitement and celebration. After watching Miss J compete nearly every weekend this season you would think that I would have nerves of steel. That is certainly not the case, I wish it was, for my own sanity if for nothing else. I was a wreck. My mom was a wreck. Sister K was a wreck. Miss J, on the other hand, continually amazes me with her calm demeanor.
In her age bracket there were 17 gymnasts. The competition was very tight. Miss J scored her season's best on vault, bars and floor. On vault she scored at 8.925, her floor performance earned her a 9.2, on bars she scored a 8.9, and on beam she turned in a 8.6. This resulted in an all around score of 35.625. Enough to earn the gold medal and the State All Around Title. To top off the excitement, the Red River Valley Level 5 girls won the State Team Title. This was in credit to their hard work and dedication throughout the season! Way to go ladies!!
>> Posted by KJ at 11:19 AM |
Home Sweet Home...
This past weekend we were at home...at home for our club's Lucky Chance gymnastics meet. I realize from time to time, I've complained a little about the driving. I even recall making a comparison of our gymnastics travel to that of a road trip to Alaska. After all of that, I have to say that driving all over the state doesn't compare to having to host a home meet. Working topped with losing a hour of sleep to the time change, equals total exhaustion! I am still exhausted!
Miss J had another great meet. Even though she had quite the crowd to cheer her on, she was able to focus and do her best. She placed third all around out of 57 gymnasts and the team placed 2nd. They had a great time competing on their home turf!
The North Star State, The Gopher State and Land of 10,000 Lakes!
Minnesota was once part of the Minnesota Territory which was formed in 1849. It was admitted into the union on May 11, 1858 as it's 32nd state. The word Minnesota originated from the Dakota Sioux, it's meaning is "sky-tinted water."
Commonly known as the Land of 10,000 lakes, Minnesota boasts more the 90,000 miles of shoreline; more than California, Florida and Hawaii combined. Lakes are widely used by residents as summer recreational areas. One such recreation area is Itasca State Park, located in northern Minnesota. It is the headwaters of the mighty Mississippi River.
The official state bird is the common loon, a bird that is graceful and whose call is hauntingly enchanting.
Minnesota is the birthplace of the snowmobile. Northern Minnesota is home to two of the major snowmobile manufacturers in the Nation. Roseau, Minnesota is home to Polaris Industries and Arctic Cat resides in Thief River Falls, Minnesota. Both companies manufacture snowmobiles (or snowcats as us northerners say), ATVs and other recreational vehicles.
My Grandpa still rides one of Arctic Cat's first snowcats while my Uncle Rick rides beside him on a much more modern machine. This antique is still in running condition with it's original engine!
Minnesota's climate is one of extremes. Winter temperatures often dip below freezing with a record low of -60 °. Alternatively, summer temperatures can be rather sauna like at 90° with humidity nearing 100%.
Winter snowfall can total upwards of 150 inches. Over Christmas this winter, we were pummeled with 27.5 inches of snow in a two day period.
This massive amount of snow has caused severe flooding in recent years. In 1997 our fair city of East Grand Forks was completely inundated by the Red River of the North. It was the most severe flood since 1826.
After the river crested at 54 feet, 26 feet above flood stage, and the water receded, a wake of $3.5 billion in damages was left behind. 1000s lost homes, but thankfully not one life was lost. Through all of this, our community has rebuilt and been reborn.
Our community of East Grand Forks, Minnesota sits on the border of Minnesota and North Dakota in northern Minnesota. EGF's population is only 8,355, but with our sister city across the border, the entire metro area hosts a population of 97,478.
Thanks for taking my tour of Minnesota and my community! We love it here! Also, thank you to Carabee from Blogtrotting for choosing my as your tour guide for today!