Tag Archives: Kids

Still here…and running!

The end of the sports seasons are near for us…We’ve been full-on since school started.  I am the head coach for the boys soccer team at the local middle school.  Isaac is in the high school band which plays at festivals around the area and at every football game, home or away.  Abigail is running cross-country at the middle school.  Needless to say, we have been running (he he, get it?) and are sort of ready for  things to start to winding-up.

Cross-Country running

In fact, Abigail ran her final cross-country meet, the county championship race yesterday!  Both the boys and girls teams at her middle school won 1st place!  Abigail was not a medalist in the race, but completed a personal record on the course which was super exciting!  I am super proud of her because she has never especially been a runner.  It’s not that she wasn’t a runner…She has just not been a kid that needs to run.

Cross-Country running

In the weeks leading up to the season, she started to run a little according (sort of) to the schedule that her coach sent out to prepare the athletes.  Mostly that didn’t work at all.  She didn’t get that getting in shape was going to be hard and maybe even be a little uncomfortable.  I ran with her a few times and sort of showed her that it’s ok to push and sweat and even be a little sore.  I am no running coach but she sort of “clicked” once she got what it meant to really run and compete and be an athlete.

Cross-Country running
She raced this girls to the end and beat her…it was so exciting!

So, Abigail is a new runner and a lot less experienced than the older girls with whom she ran.  We have decided, though, that she is a runner and that she and I are going to run together through out the year so that when next year’s season comes around, she will already be in a good spot and will be ready to roll!

Cooling down

I am super proud of all of the kids on her team and she has great coaches that are encouraging and genuinely nice and excited for the kids.  So, while I am glad for the running season to be coming to an end, in a way I am sort of bummed too as it brings to an end the excitement of it all.  I suppose Abigail and her middle-aged Dad can always continue to compete…it’s been nice knowing you my friends!

Majorette and Band Festival – 2014

Tuesday night was the Majorette and Band Festival where all of the high schools in Kanawha county come to show off their field shows.  We joined several hundred other folks in watching 8 great bands play their very best in the University of Charleston stadium.

Our band
Our band on the field

This is our first year to have a band member on the field and we were super excited for all of the build-up and preparation for this show.  The season started with band camp in August where the entire band went away to set up their marching field show and practice their music.  It’s amazing how fast (a week!), the band came together to produce a really nice show.  Since that time, they practice daily and have refined their show incredibly!

Us with the other bands
Us with the other bands
Click to play the small version

Here’s a better version if your machine will play it

We are very fortunate to have a really great band director who expects a lot from the kids, and leads them demand a lot from themselves.  Their pride and hard work that the director instilled in them really showed as they  took the field Tuesday.  The band exhibited fantastic precision in marching and delivered as crisp a performance as I’ve ever heard/seen.  They were in synch and smooth and just looked first-class.  I couldn’t be more proud of how these kids performed!

Youtube video with bits from all of the bands

As a special treat, Marshall University’s Marching Thunder performed the finale at the festival and showed the bands at the festival what the next level of play might be for them.  They were great and dynamic and made a lot of sound (in a great way) as you would expect from a good sized university band!

Marshall Marching Thunder
Marshall Marching Thunder – Click to play small version

Here’s a better version if your machine will play it

Among other songs, they played Big Noise from Winnetka, one of the songs that Isaac’s jazz band played last year…both were great renditions…it was a lot of fun to hear the different takes on the same song.  While we were disappointed that our band wasn’t awarded the grand champion trophy, I am so proud of Isaac and his friends and look forward to many more competitions!


Isaac and Abigail’s aunt and uncle got them a rain guage for Christmas this year and they have been fascinated by it ever since.  Abigail in particular checks it for rainfall and then empties it everyday on our way to school.  Well, this has been an active year for her to say the least.  I looked at the NOAA site for information on how much rain we have gotten this year.  Charleston averages 44.05 inches of rain per year and July is typically the wettest month with an average of 4.86 inches.  From January 1 until June 30, we got 26.28 inches, above the average of 21.98 inches for the same period. Last year we only got 15.65 inches in the first half of the year.  July is looking like it will continue this year’s wet trend.  Our rain guage measured 1.7 inches from yesterday’s rainfall though the official measurement for the day was 1.16 (officially we got 1.54 the day before also).  Anyhow, it seems so strange to get so much rain since we have been pretty dry (it seems) the last bunch of years.  I prefer the green grass compared to the brown grass of last year but it is not welcome inside my house.  The basement has some wet spots.  Fortunately, it has floor drains too!