Monday, June 29, 2015

She's back

Middle spent the last week in New Orleans on a youth mission trip. Nearly a hundred high school students and adult leaders from our church spent the week renovating houses and cleaning yards in the ninth ward.

She said a highlight was attending a black church where the choir gyrated and danced with the music, and the preacher "yelled." "It was just like in the movies," she said.

Other highlights were getting to stay in dorms on the Tulane campus and the beignets. Of course, the beignets.

But they got back last night, and I was so glad to get her home.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Fabulous Colorado

Oldest and I had a wonderful trip to Colorado. He participated in two football camps while we were there. One at Colorado School of Mines in Golden, and the other at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs.

And it was a very successful trip. Immediately following camp last Friday, the football staff of Colorado School of Mines offered Oldest a spot on their football team. That was fast! And what an honor. One of the top engineering schools in the United State  has asked Oldest to attend.

We were impressed with the campus and its setting in the gorgeous foothills of the Rocky Mountains, and with the football staff and athletic facilities. What a fun surprise to find out how much this renowned academic institution values its athletics. It would be a great place for Jordan to play.

 How fun to think the charming, old mining town of Golden, Colorado might be in our future.

Look at the beautiful view of campus and the athletic fields from the top of neighboring Lookout Mountain.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

On the road again (again)

I have three more football camps to take Oldest to this next week, and these are even farther from home.

First, we head to Colorado, to camps at the Colorado School of Mines and the Air Force Academy. Then we hop a plane from Denver to Newark, where we will drive down to Princeton for camp on Monday.

These three schools have all expressed a strong interest in Oldest playing football for them, and have encouraged him to attend their camps.

When you're not a four- or five-star recruit, I think a lot of the colleges want to see how serious you are about wanting to play for them before they will give a player a scholarship offer. The camps are a good way for the college coaches to check out the player, and for the player to check out the team and the campus, and show he's interested in playing on their team.

So . . . hi ho, hi ho, it's off to camp we go.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

New House Update

The rain this week has definitely stalled progress on the new house. Just as the demolition contractor got the old house torn down and debris hauled away, the skies opened up over Houston.

My contractor estimates we will have our building permit in the next week or so. We just need the rain to go away and the mud pit where the old house once sat to dry up so we can be ready. We still need several loads of fill dirt to fill in the hole where the old dolphin pool was, and then prepare the pad for the foundation.

There's still a lot of "dirt work" to do, and dirt work doesn't mix well with rain.

Here's a look at the vacant lot following the demolition and removal of the old house. Look at the stately old trees dripping with Spanish moss in both in the front and back yard. What a great setting for my fabulous new house.

Panoramic photo creds to Middle.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

My Birthday Dinner

Friday was my birthday, and Superman surprised me with dinner at my favorite restaurant, Churrascos.

Churrascos serves South American cuisine - Churrasco  steak with chimichurri sauce, fried yuca, plantain chips, and tres leches cake, among many other dishes. Those are just my favorites. 

I asked Superman if I can have another birthday in a few weeks. He said, "No problem," since I had conveniently left the unused Churrascos gift card at home. We have to use it, right?

I think I'll make reservations in a couple weeks. 

Here's a picture of my cake. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

More time for the book

Delays. Delays. Life is getting in the way of my book gaining momentum. I've done a rough outline, made quick character sketches and thought of a fabulous opening line. But that's it.

It's actually quite a lot when I think about it, but not as much as I had hoped for by now.

In my defense, life has been very busy this first week of summer vacation. I've hauled kids to doctors, dogs to vets, and oldest child to half a dozen football camps. There's been trips to Kroger, trips to the dry cleaner, and trips shuttling kids to and from friend's houses.

So today, I'm determined to carve out a more significant block of time to devote to my book. And it's going to be a fabulous book. So far, I have a girl and a guy, in Charleston, with two murders. They're related (the murders, not the girl and the guy).

Great things to come.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

He got an offer!

What a great weekend. Oldest and I traveled to Dallas and then to Lake Charles, Louisiana for football camps this last weekend.

He had two great camps, and received an offer of a full-ride scholarship to play football for Northwestern State in Natchitoches, Louisiana.

An NCAA Division I football program, the Northwestern State Demons are in the Southland Conference. Other schools in the conference include Sam Houston State and Stephen F. Austin in Texas, and McNeese State and the University of New Orleans in Louisiana.

With fewer than one out of every thousand high school football players getting the chance to play Division I football, we are more excited.

Fork Em, Demons!

Thursday, June 4, 2015

On the road again

My schedule is packed for the next four weeks. I'll easily put a couple thousand miles on my car. College football camp season is upon us, and Oldest and I are hitting the road.

Several college football programs have contacted him about attending their camps. Most are one-day camps that last only a few hours, but some can last a full day. It's a chance for the college scouts to assess recruits, and vice versa. The camps are similar to NFL combines. Usually the kids run the 40-yard dash, run through position-related drills, and get weighed and measured.

Oldest really likes going to the camps and meeting the coaches in person. It's also fun for him when he runs into old friends he didn't know were going to be there. He loves football, and the camps are an opportunity for him to immerse himself in it at a higher level, and get coaching from some of the top college coaches in the country.

The first out of town camp he wants to attend is today, so off we go.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

After The Storm

The last minute cancellation of Oldest's high school 7 on 7 football tournament gave us the unexpected opportunity to spend the weekend at the lake. What a treat - two weekends in a row. That probably won't happen again this summer.

No threats of flooding this weekend, but we did have a strong thunderstorm blow through Saturday night that precipitated an early end to water activities that day. However, the sunset following the storm was well worth it.

For a minute or two (at the most), the setting sun cast the most enchanting pink glow over the water. I had just enough time to grab my phone and snap this picture.