Sunday, October 23, 2011

LJAL Overload

This weekend was a double header for Sam.  We had Cheerfest on Saturday and A game against the Falcons on Sunday.  Sam had opted out of the competition.  There were a bunch of factors that went into that decision but the end result was a much happier cheerleader. 

The Livonia Orioles took #1 for the cheer routine and #3 for the Pom Pon routine.  We couldn’t have been happier.  My one mistake, and it was a biggie, was not having Sam in uniform.  I was afraid it would get dirty with her just sitting there and we still need to cheer the next day.  I was not aware she would be able to go on the floor during awards for medal presentation or pictures.  So my daughter was the one not in uniform.  She was very happy and so proud. 

On Saturday Sam had her last game of the season.  She wants it to be her last day ever.  I need to figure out how to get her re-involved.  She really enjoys it while she is doing it.  I think the intensity of the cheerfest practices got to her.

After the game Sam and I went to Taco Bell and then off to do our weekend shopping.  As we were heading to Kroger Sam said, “Jason doesn’t know what he’s missing.”  (Jason was at uncle roger’s this weekend.)  I asked her “Why?”  Sam explained, “I haven’t tasted your food for like, two days.” 

Kids say the darndest things.

(For the record I made dinner on Saturday night.  It was chili dogs and Sam made butt music all night long.)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Lucky Puppy

Every Wednesday we send Abby and Candy to Lucky Puppy Doggie Daycare.  Yes I know it makes me sound like some kind of yuppie idiot.  The dogs love it.  Kevin picks up the dogs at the house and I meet him near Ann Arbor to pick them up.  Lucky Puppy is almost an hour south of us so this arrangement works.

Wednesday s helps us in many ways.  The dogs get exercised by running their butts off.  Abby got over her fear of pools.  (Not over her fear of being bathed though.)  Candy dives in like some goofy Olympic diver.  Both dogs come home tired.  Not just a little tired, BIG tired.  This is the best part.  They both act like puppies and love to greet people.  Being tired just helps them not greet with so much enthusiasm. 

Abby is the daintier of the two dogs.  She requires more comfort than other dogs.

Tired Abby.  Note the use of a pillow.  

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Away game

This cheer weekend was an away game.  We went to a middle school in Northville.  Michigan is famous for lots of things, Cherries, Kwamie, the murder rate in Detroit and Flint, Automobiles and crazy ass weather.  Last week I had minor sunburn.  Today is windy enough to alter the drive path of the van.  Luck for us we get to sit in aluminum bleachers on the high side of the bowl the field sits in.  This creates a nice swirl effect so the wind is hitting you in the face and the back of the neck at the same time. The bleachers do a great job of wicking the pesky heat away from your body.  I knew it was cool out but the kids had taken the dogs around the block on their bikes and were actually hot when they got home.  I put on my two sweat shirts grabbed a hand warmer and headed out.  

I was woefully underdressed.  

I figured 11 years on the ramp and growing up in Michigan I could tough it out.  I am not tough.  By the end of the game I was hoping for a forfeit so we could leave early.  The cheerleaders didn’t look near as bad as us parents at the end of the game.  “Embrace the suck!” became our rallying cry.  In the end Sam did great, Jason was happy to hang out in the van, he was there to support his sister, and we got to see how much improvement our kids have made.

We got home and both kids wanted to go outside and play.  


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Vacation wisdom

We have been talking about going to Florida for a couple of years.  Chris has bought into the idea that not taking your kid to Disney is the same a beating them with a stick. 

The Disney marketers are to be commended.

Her R&R gives us the chance to live her dream and take the kids to Florida.  We are going to leave Disney a secret.  We told the kids that we were going to Florida and Sam told me if we are going to Florida then “Please oh please say we aren’t going to Disney!”  I almost laughed my ass off right there.

She is my kid.

I just see a park with lots of people and endless lines.  I am the secluded beach type.  Mai Tai’s and water.  Good stuff.

Jason asked if there were rides like an amusement park.  I said yes and he said “Ok, Disney is fine with me.”  I told him it wasn’t a done deal and there was a lot to do and he just looked at me and said he wanted rides.  Simple is good.

Chris was bummed but was determined to find good stuff in Florida to do.  I felt bad that Chris was so bummed that I figured I would talk to Sam.

She got to sit in the front seat when we took the car to get the dogs.  She talked to me about lots of stuff the whole way there.  (That was the best part of my whole day.)

Sam told me that Disney would be ok but no pink castles.  The number one thing she wants to do in Florida is swim with the Dolphins.    I asked her if she wanted to swim with the crocodiles in the swamp and she thought about it for a second and then said no she didn't want to get eaten.  So Dolphins yes, crocs no.
Those kids make me giggle.

Monday, October 10, 2011


Monday’s usually suck. 

Not Today!!  I slept in.  I got up a bit later than I should have and the kids were almost late.  Ever other morning they get up by the time I leave so they can spend time with Lindsey.  She makes them breakfast.  I point at the cereal and tell them to leave me alone until I have my coffee.  Not today, they slept in.  I ended up scrambling a bit and had to drop off Sam and then come back home.  I had to get Sam from Brownies at 5 pm.  That gave me the rest of the day to do what I wanted, kid free.  I was almost paralyzed by the range of things I could do.  I ended up Costco/grocery shopping.  Although this sounds like a crappy chore, just imagine it with no kids.  

See not so bad.  

I spent something like an hour and a half wandering around Costco.  Did you know they have tools?  After that I went to Kroger and was able to actually shop.  No Sam asking if we can have doughnuts, no Jason asking if we can get the industrial bag of chicken nuggets.  I was just me being cheep.  I got everything we needed and headed home.  After I got it all put up it was time for lunch.  Then I took a break and had some quality zombie killing time.  I watched the news, cleaned up the basement, vacuumed, and did a bit of general clean up. 

It was a great day. 

Saturday, October 8, 2011


Samantha’s cheer games are almost always at 10 am.  The game doesn’t start until 11 but this way they are all there and get warm up time before hand.  On the upside I get to watch the last half of the Flag game and those kids put on a pretty good show.  Us parents yell just as loud for the 7 year olds as we do for the pro’s. 

Last week was cold as heck as we watched the kids.  I had on two sweat shirts and put a hand warmer in my sweatshirt pocket to keep my hands warm.  This weekend I am sitting on aluminum bleachers baking in the stands.  These bleachers are like tin foil pans.  I ended up under the bleachers with a bunch of little kids just to escape the sun.  I picked up three Gatorades for us and delivered Sam’s to her on the track.  She had already gone through her water bottle. 

Monday is a federal holiday.  It is not a day off for the kids.  I am so excited I can hardly wait.  I am doing as much laundry as I can now so I don’t waste valuable time on Monday with crappy chores like laundry.

So excited.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Camper Show

On Thursday the kids had a day off.  It was teacher in school work day or something.  So I took the day off and hung out at home with the kiddos.  Both kids had asked me if we were going to the camper show this year.  We didn’t go last year and evidently all the whining the year before actually meant, “I love this!”  They gave me grief about not having gone and really liked looking at the big RV’s.  I think they just like walking through the $300,000 mansion’s on wheels and imagining what life would be like living in one of those.  I could definitely do just that.  Travel across North America in luxury, oh yeah.
Anyway, we looked at those and then at the more realistic pop-ups and hybrid trailers.  I saw a couple I really liked.  I took some photos but they didn’t turn out to well.  Now I just need to find one that fits the old budget and we will be in good shape for camping season!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Baseball Sunday

On Sunday I spent the afternoon at Jason’s last double header of the fall season.  The tough part was that the Lions kickoff was at 1 pm and the Tigers started at 3pm.  I would much rather watch the Lions then the Tigers as I believe major league baseball is as exciting as watching paint dry, but we are in the championships.  I was able to download an NFL app so I could listen to the game.  Jason’s game got underway around 1:30 and the lions were already down 14 – 0.  I did not expect the Lions to win but I wasn’t thinking they would get blown out either.  Jason did really well.  He played as catcher and right field and showed a lot of hustle.  All of a sudden it was a 17 – 3 game for the Lions.  We got a big Woo-Hoo out of me at a completely arbitrary time during Jason’s game.  I had to explain that the Lions scored.  20 – 3 and I turn off the phone to wait for the 3rd quarter.  Jason nails one towards the shortstop and puts runners on 1st and 3rd.  Next kid is a walk.  Sweet, bases loaded.  Next kid pops one up and I look down thinking it is an easy out.  No such thing for kiddie baseball.  Jason is now on third and we are winning.  Next kid gets a hit and makes first, Jason scores, life is good.  Not sure what happened but we were winning 7 – 2 and then the 6th inning, and last inning in kiddie baseball, began.  In the 6th inning there is no mercy rule and our pitcher was tired.  Their wheaties must have kicked in and we lost 14 – 7.  Turned the phone back on to 26 – 10, the Lions and Dallas have scored.  Second game gets underway and all of a sudden we pick a second interception and it is a 27 – 17 game.  The second game for Jason wasn’t going as well as the first.  The long days and our lack of pitching depth was taking its toll.  They play with heart and field pretty well but our pitchers are new and still learning.  30 – 17, damn the Lions are at it again.  Jason was at bat and took a couple of good swings but it was not to be.  30 – 24, again a completely unexpected shout from the guy with the earphone crammed in his head.  Jason gets walked and is looking for another run.  30 – 27, are you kidding me, the Lions are going to make a game out of this yet.  Poor Jason is now down like 14 – 4.  It is hard to even keep score anymore.  Oh no another Romo screw up and the Lions are ahead 30 – 34!  How does this happen!  The Lions pulled off a win at Dallas stadium!  As I jump around in happiness poor jay is losing the second game of the day.  To top it off the Tigers are winning too.  We weren’t allowed to announce any tigers scores as the coach was DVRing the game.  In the end Jason played very well and you could see his improvement from the beginning of spring ball right through the fall ball season. 
Now I just need to hold out until next spring to see his next game.

Sunday, October 2, 2011


On Saturday Sam had cheer for the Orioles vs. Blue Jays game.  This is the first time I remember Orioles fans being outnumbered.  Even when we are on the road we tend to fill the bleachers with screaming fans (parents).  We do a really good job supporting our kids.  The Blue Jay folk’s evidently do the same.  It was their Family Day so it took longer and the stands and field were filled with Blue Jay crap.  (Yes I am biased.  I am not a real journalist.)  Sam did a great job. Now she likes to find me in the stands and make sure I participate in the audience participation parts.  Usually I am busy yelling at the game.  I do try and make a special attempt to watch the girls when they cheer as this is why I am there.  I do look odd as one of the few guys yelling “Orange and Black!” from the stands.  It is tough, when I see a tackle get broken out of the corner of my eye and one of the players making a break for the end zone, to stay focused.  
I was cheering for the football players at one of the games and a lady in the stands asked if that was my son.  I calmly told her “No, my daughter is a cheerleader right there.”  I am very proud of my daughter and her progress as a cheerleader; I just like watching the games too.