Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Real Deal on Roller Derby

Anyone who doesn't think roller derby is a sport is W-R-O-N-G!  Roller derby athletes work hard to train.  Most teams practice for 2 hours 3 to 4 days a week.  A lot of derby girls/guys train outside of practice time by going to the gym, running, weight training, etc.  Practices consist of endurance, calisthenics, blocking drills, jamming drills, and more.  The work will make you break a sweat and push you to your limits. 

Roller derby used to be more theatrics than sport, but that's over now.  It is competitive and action-packed.  There is a governing body called the Women's Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA).  You can find information at www.wftda.com

People that play roller derby do NOT get paid.  Most players have regular jobs.  That makes for a busy life most of the time juggling families, jobs, roller derby, and social lives. 

Support your local roller derby league.  Most roller derby leagues sponsor charitable organizations too so when you support them you are supporting your community. 

Women need exercise and roller derby is a fun way to get fit.  Think about joining your local roller derby league!

Monday, August 30, 2010

I Wish I Caught that on Video!

This morning I had one of those moments, at least according to my son. 

It began as a routine morning, getting ready for school and work.  I got out of bed reluctantly because it is Monday after all.  I got my kids up, took a shower, dressed, and did my makeup and hair.  I then went to go put on my shoes and that's when it happened.

I put on my left shoe.  Fine.  Then I put on my right shoe and it felt like something was in the toe of my shoe so I took it off and shook it out.  Nothing fell out so I reached in and pulled out a SPIDER!!!!  I immediately shook it off my hand and proceeded to scream over and over while I am trying to smash it with the shoe in which it decided to try to make a home.  I missed 3 or 4 times all the while still screaming.  It ended up going into the pantry where I could not get to it.  I vow not to miss next time if I see it again.  I just hope I don't find it in my shoe again.  The whole time I am freaked out my son is laughing at me saying, "I wish I had a video camera."

I play roller derby, yet I am freaked out by a little spider.  Maybe I am not that tough.  But I have seen a spider eat a toad before and those things just freak me out!!  So I will remember to grab the video camera next time I feel something in my shoe.  At least if I am gonna get freaked out, others could have a laugh at my expense because I probably did look funny doing all that screaming and slapping with my shoe.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Luau at the Lake

I look forward to this every summer.  My husband's best friend (from childhood) and his wife have a lot on a private lake and we have been having a luau with them for the last 3 years, tomorrow being the 4th.  This is also in celebration of my husband's birthday.  We recycle decorations from previous years and maybe add a few here and there when we catch them on sale.  We put a tablecloth on the picnic table and put a pineapple or Hawaiian centerpiece on the table and then spread seashells and some luau confetti all over it.  The table even gets a grass skirt on the ends.  We put up palm trees and flowers and other luau decorations.  We have some old Blue Hawaii music or something similar to set the mood.

We hand out leis when people arrive and some of the ladies and kids wear grass skirts.We have food and a tiki bar.  This year we are serving sloppy joes to every one and margaritas to those 21+.  Everyone that attends brings a side dish to share.  We swim, fish, paddle boat, canoe and play sand volleyball.  We limbo once it gets dark.  We really just let loose and have fun.  The kids play all day together.  If anyone has too much to drink, they can spend the night in a tent.  My family just camps every year so we stay no matter what.

What I really like is it brings people together that normally don't get to spend much time.  It makes for positive memories and those are the kinds of memories I like.  My daughter catches toads and kisses them and swims with them.  My son rides bikes with his friends and gets really dirty and swims too.  I love to see my children happy and the lake, luau or not, makes them VERY happy.  Next year I will make it a point not to let derby interfere so much with my family's lake time in the summer.  I miss it a lot.  I've only been down there 3 times this summer.  C'mon Saturday, bring on some great weather for that luau!  Aloha!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Imagination Running Wild

I was an imaginative child but somehow I lost the wildness of my imagination in adulthood.  Don't get me wrong, I still have an imagination, just not as vivid.  I think that's because I am meant to be the "grown up one" in my marriage to my very childlike husband.  He is the one who is best at getting on the floor and playing with the kids or watching cartoons with them on a Saturday morning.  I am the one who likes to observe.

I thought I would LOVE playing Barbie with my daughter.  I dreamt of that when I was a child.  But now that time it is here, and I don't really know how to "play" anymore.  It feels awkward.  I just like to watch my daughter play and how her imagination works.

My daughter has a very vivid imagination.  She will play for hours and carry on conversations with her toys or imaginary friends where I have no clue what she is talking about but it is fun and a lot of times funny to just sit and listen to the carefree way she plays.

Maybe that's what it is, I am not carefree anymore.  I have so much on my mind with my family life, job, derby, and friends that I just don't have room anymore for much imagination.  Maybe if life weren't so complicated adults would hang on to their imaginations into old age.  It would be funny to see adults playing hopscotch or go down the slides at the park, but just maybe it would make for a world filled with more love and forgiveness rather than hate and entitlement.  Sort of a release for all our emotions, which is why I think children have the gift of imagination, so they can release emotions that they just don't know what to do with.  So I say play whenever you get the chance and you just might be happier.  :)

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Stairs for Fitness

No I am not talking about the StairMaster.  I am talking actual stairs.

I work in a hospital.  On my lunch about 3 days a week I go up the stairs to the 9th floor and back down and back up and so on.  My personal record is 8 times up and back down.  That's 124 flights of stairs!  I am dripping sweat by the time I am done and the inches (not weight) I have lost from this is very noticeable, even by other people.  It takes me about 20 minutes and then I go to the gym to shower the sweat off.  I am lucky enough to have a gym at work but usually I only use the shower there.  I have used the elliptical, treadmills, and the stationary bike and I don't sweat nearly as bad with even 25 or 30 minutes and I wasn't getting the results that I am now. 

I just decided to try it one day and I love the results.  It is also helping me condition for roller derby North Central Regionals where we may have to play twice in one day.  I do the stairs on practice days and then skate for 2 hours in the evening.  While my legs are telling me they are tired, it is getting easier every time and my body won't be working against me if we win and have to play twice in one day.  I am praying we win our first game and our second.  That would mean 3 games in 2 days! 

I started out going 4 times up to the 9th floor.  Then 5, 6, and now I have done 7 three times and 8 once.  I will continue to try to better myself and when I feel I have mastered them completely I may go down the hall a ways where there are 12 floors and longer flights.  Right now each flight I do has about 10 stairs and down the hall they have about 15 stairs each flight.  You don't have to join a gym to do any exercise, you just have to tell yourself that you can do it and DO it.  Happy fitness!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Trying My Patience


Need I say more?  I don't think it's needed but I will say that my kids have taught me more patience than I could have ever learned anywhere else.  My son is almost 14.  While that makes me feel old it also makes me feel apologetic for how I treated my parents when I was that age. 

Defiance is not fun when you are a parent.  I remember doing it when I was a kid.  I am not proud of it now because I think I am getting paid back double. 

All I can think to do is just accept what he is being defiant about and be patient and just love him.  He is an alien to me!  Oh how I miss the terrible twos these days.  At least then if you put them in a time out they behaved better afterward.  Now I can send him to his room and he comes out twice as ornery. 

I know now that when he is old enough to move out, these days will make it easier to let him go.  However, it saddens me to no end that my sunshiny little boy hates me these days.  I just want to wrap my arms around him and never let go and push all that hate aside.  I love him more than I could have ever imagined loving someone, even when I don't like him.  Children have a way of teaching us things that we can never learn otherwise and while I wouldn't want to give up the wisdom, I would give up the pain.  My child is going to be a man sooner than I want him to be, and I know these days of rebellion will not last and that is comforting.  Someday he will learn this lesson with his own children and I will be there for him to remind him of how he was "at that age."  Until then I will just love him and be patient and pray.  That's all I can do.

Monday, August 23, 2010

On Top of Spaghetti

I love spaghetti, especially with meatballs.  I love to make homemade sauce and homemade meatballs.  Here is the way I do it:

1-28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
1-28 ounce can tomato puree
1-10 to 15 ounce can tomato paste
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup red onion, chopped finely
1/2 cup bell pepper
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
salt and pepper to taste

1 to 2 pounds ground meat (pork, beef, sausage)
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon garlic
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 or 2 eggs

Mix sauce ingredients in large pot/crock pot and cook on low.  Immediately after mixing sauce ingredients start preparing meatballs.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix meatball ingredients in mixing bowl and shape into 1 inch balls and place on baking sheet (I use a broiler pan so the drippings go underneath).  Bake for 20 to 25 minutes.  Place into pot with sauce.  Continue to cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.  About 20 minutes before you are ready to eat, cook noodles of your choice according to package directions.

Add your favorite ingredients to change it up a bit.  This goes well with salad and bread sticks or cheese bread or garlic bread.  You will also have plenty of leftovers.  The meatballs always taste better the second day!

This is something I enjoyed very much growing up and I hope you and your family enjoy it as well.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Home vs. Away

Intraleague (home team) games are less stressful for me than playing interleague (away team) games. I can actually play just for fun with no worries about whether we win or lose. I also get sentimental when I see a member of the opposing home team (still one of my teammates for away games) improve her skills and end up cheering for them. Small victories should be celebrated as well as big ones.

There are other rollergirls who would rather not play their own girls most likely because they don't want to hurt them and at the same time the competitiveness gets the better of them because they still want to win. That could make for a lot of mixed emotions to stress over and some have a hard time not getting worked up.

Tonight will be the rematch game between the Omaha Rollergirls' intraleague teams! Victoria's Secret Service will play Lowdown Lucys to see if they can take the win they weren't able to achieve over LDL on August 7th.

Win or lose, I love playing for fun because regionals in September will be S-E-R-I-O-U-S business where winning IS important and that stresses me out just a little bit. The intraleague games are sort of a breather so I can fall in love with derby all over again.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Aye Chihuahua

Are you thinking about getting a chihuahua?  I have an 8-year-old chihuahua.  Her name is Missy.  I should have named her Kissy because she likes to lick A LOT.  I have learned more about the personality of a chihuahua by owning one compared to what I heard or read about them.

They are VERY protective of their owner(s).

They favor the owner(s) and are usually wary of children.

They don't always jump high.  Some are scared to, like mine.

They can be REALLY mean.  I mean ferocious, but not to their master(s).

They are always on alert.  HIGH alert.

They are playful.

They are lovable, but only by the people they know.

Don't try to approach a chihuahua, let them approach you.  I mean it, don't even try to coax them or it will take longer to get acquainted.

Chihuahuas are very anxious or nervous dogs.  They do not shiver because they are cold, they shiver because they are nervous or anticipating something.

They may look cute in sweaters, but they don't always like them.

Yes, their bark is annoying, but they are showing how big their hearts are for trying to protect their home from something that is probably much bigger than they are.

They are not easy to potty train but at least their messes aren't that big.  I just let mine out OFTEN.

Chihuahuas are not GREAT around kids but mine will tolerate them for a bit before she lets them know she's had enough and literally snaps at them.

They are easy to love being as they are so cute and protective and very obedient as well.  If you decide to get a chihuahua I hope you love yours as much as I love mine.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

D-I-Y Wood Floors

We had oak floors under our old carpet and our son has bad allergies...

Pull up the carpets and redo the wood floors.  It took many hours of labor and lots of sweat, maybe some blood and a few tears.  BUT it is B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L.  We are sooo proud of how it turned out. 

What I would do different next time 
Get a pod or storage unit, clear everything out and do all rooms at once instead of having to do it 1 room at a time.  That is a huge reason why it took so long for it to get done.  We should have sent the kids to Grandma's for a week and stayed with her while it was drying and airing out.

Hugely cheap compared to hiring a company to do it for you.  Sander rental (my husband got for free through his work) $40 per day + stain $15 + can(s) of polyurethane $20 each + miscellaneous tools/sandpaper $50 or less = $115 to $200.  A company charges $2 per square foot which could cost you $1000 just for 500 square feet!!!  Redonkulous I tell you!!!

It will also give you a great sense of accomplishment and what better reward is that?  You can add tremendous value to the worth of your home as well doing this without having to pay a great amount.  AND, our son's allergies are greatly improved which is the most important outcome.