Saturday, February 28, 2015

Rest & Relaxation

Last night was a quiet one here.  Cam had Evan over and they spent the time he was here playing Nerf guns and Pokemon.  Doug had made homemade pizza and everyone liked it.  Meg rested a lot.  She has a head cold and has been on the go ever since our plane landed.  Doug and I had work to do for school and Renegade.  It was a good night to get that done and to watch a movie I had been wanting to see - 12 Years a Slave.  It was a sad movie, but one worth seeing.  It won the best picture Oscar in 2014.  Cal did go to the basketball game at Tippy Valley with a group of friends.  The boys lost as Gage is out nursing a dislocated shoulder, but Cal and his friends had fun anyway.

We decided just to take it easy today as well.  We were all still dragging from our trip and the start of a new trimester.  Doug was very busy at work the past three days catching up from being on vacation.  Thus, it was the perfect day to rest.  I spent a lot of it working on the computer.  It is the easiest way for me to keep busy without physically being active.  I was able to catch up on the bills, our Disney photos and schoolwork.  Meg slept in and then spent a good portion of today reading.  Cameron read as well and played on the iPad.  Doug did try to reserve court time at the racquet club in Warsaw for the three of them, but it was busy today.

Doug and I did go to Chops tonight.  I felt pretty good today and only had two episodes of shortness of breath from my pleurisy.  We made it home before the snow go too heavy.  Meg and Cameron spent the evening at my parents.  Cam had fun rolling around their carpet and playing games.  Meg took advantage of the time to rest.  Cal was late returning from Hacienda and Cameron's.  The snow slowed him down.  Stephen and Nick spent the night here with him.

Friday, February 27, 2015

One Scary Practice

Tonight was our last practice of the season and it didn't go quite the way I had planned.  We have been holding team competitions all week and we started off with a suicide.  The teams got a point for each player that crossed the line before the clock sounded at 35 seconds.  After the suicides Angela came running to me and said Vicky was in the locker room.  She had used her inhaler, but it hadn't helped.  I ran in there and Vicky was crying and gasping for breath.  I sat with her for a minute and realized that she couldn't calm down and was struggling to breathe.

I had Angela run down to the office and get anyone there who could help.  Cindy and Ryan both came back with her.  Cindy also tried to get her to calm down and breathe slowly, but it didn't help.  Vicky tried drinking some water, but it wouldn't slow her breathing down.  Ryan finally called 911.  By then Coach Pizana moved all of the girls to the small gym.  It felt like forever before the ambulance arrived, but it did finally get there.  They put Vicky on oxygen almost immediately and started an IV.  By the time they wheeled her out of the gym her breathing was a lot better.  Ryan and Cindy came back almost ten minutes later and said that she was on her way to the hospital and was already doing well.

I had a hard time focusing the rest of practice as did most of the girls.  We made it through, however.  Once I took everyone home and got Meg, Cameron and Evan here, I felt a little better.  Ryan had texted from the hospital and said there would be releasing her this evening.  I still cried every time I thought about it.  I am thankful that she will be ok.  I don't ever want to do that again.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Pleurisy Round 2

I made an appointment with Dr. Mulry this afternoon to follow up on the problems I have been having with pleurisy.  He gave me some medicine for gout to try for symptom relief, but overall said that it would take at least another week or so to get over.  It was better in Florida, but definitely is still there.  I have gotten used to it which makes it easier to deal with.  I need to rest, but school and basketball make that challenging.  It also is hard because I have to talk so much and that makes my chest hurt after awhile.  Mr. Larson told me that after lunch I look terrible.  I had to laugh, but I know he was correct.  I should be able to rest this weekend and hopefully will be on the mend soon.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Cal's Vacation

We asked Cal if he wanted to go with us to Florida this time, but he opted out.  Instead he said that he would stay with my parents.  We checked in with him several times and had to laugh at his adventures with my parents.  On Friday he got stuck in the driveway of our house.  After forty-five minutes of trying to get out on his home he had to accept help from my Dad.  He then ran out of gas later as he had used it all up trying to get out of the driveway.  We decided that my Dad must have rubbed off on him as it sounded like something he would do.

On Saturday they all went to MC Sporting Goods and then Goodwill.  Cal found a new pair of shoes at the first one and a camouflage shirt for Saturday night's game at the second.  They enjoyed a buffet lunch before heading back for the boys' basketball game.  Cal and his friends met at our house to make signs for that night's game.  Dad sent us pictures.

Cal spent the day studying Sunday as Monday was the last day of the trimester.  Monday night he went with his friends to Buffalo Wild Wings and then watched "Better Call Saul" at Cameron Adams'.  Tuesday was spent playing basketball and checking his final grades.  He brought two of his grades up and ended up with two A's - Physics and Strength Training and two B's - AP US History and AP/Dual Credit Calculus.  We were thrilled.  He finished with an 11.0.  That is the best he has done in quite awhile.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The End of a Wonderful Trip

We were up early to check in with our airline at the resort.  They were even able to hold on to our carry on bags as well.  We walked to EPCOT to enjoy our last morning there.  We rode two of our favorites - Soarin and Figment.  We decided to eat lunch in the park on our tour of the countries.  Mexico had some delicious nachos and guacamole.  Meg wanted one last pretzel and Cam and I wanted a funnel cake.  I had been looking for a sweatshirt and found the perfect one in the German shop.  Cam bought a King Louie pin for Grandpa Cutes and we were on our way.

As we left EPCOT it started to rain.  Meg looked at me and said, "I think God is crying because we have to leave Disney World."  I think she may have been right.

We caught the Magical Express to the airport at 1:45.  Cam and Meg enjoyed the Mickey Mouse cartoons on the way out.  They watched a lot of them on our trip.  They are new ones based on the old ones from years ago.  It took awhile to get checked in at the airport, but easy to find our terminal.  I am impressed that Brett was able to navigate it all last Spring without ever having been there before.  Orlando airport is a lot bigger than Indy.

Our plane left about ten minutes late, but we didn't mind.  We noticed the plane to Providence was delayed several hours again.  Glad that we weren't on that one.  The plane trip went very well.  Doug slept for part of it.  I wasn't very nervous, at least not like the flight down.  This plane had live television to watch.  I was able to view several episodes of Man vs. Food and the nightly news.  It definitely made the time on the plane go by quickly.

We easily found our luggage and had a short wait on the shuttle back to our van.  Doug was afraid that it wouldn't start.  It did, however, and he was able to drive over the small mound of snow behind the van.  Indy got seven inches of snow while we were gone.  The drive home was a little slower than on the way down.  There were several roads with snow drifted over them.  We stopped at Arby's for dinner and were back by 11:30.  Cal was awake when we got here, but all of us climbed in bed almost immediately tired, but happy to have had the time away.

Monday, February 23, 2015

What a Beautiful Day!

Today we started at Disney Hollywood Studios.  Since they hadn't been able to ride Rockin Roller Coaster they wanted to try one more time.  All three were able to get one and had a great time.  The first part scares Cameron a little bit, but he enjoyed it just the same.  Doug and I hurried over to Toy Story Mania as we both enjoy that ride and neither of us can handle the spinning of Rockin Roller Coaster.  Once we were all done riding we caught a bus to EPCOT.  Our fast passes were for there this morning and they all wanted to catch Test Track, Spaceship Earth and Mission Space before Brett left.  Luckily, we had fast passes for all three as the park was crowded by the time we arrived.

Lunch was on the Boardwalk again.  Everyone but me ate pizza.  I enjoyed a chili dog.  Brett spent some time packing while Cameron and Meg went swimming.  Doug even joined them as it was a beautiful afternoon.  I waited with Brett for his Magic Express back to the airport.  His plane was to leave at 7:00 p.m. The bus was right on time and Brett said he was ready to go.  He has a test on Wednesday and would like to get it over with.  He planned to used his travel time for studying.

We ate appetizers in the lounge before taking the bus to Magic Kingdom.  It was crowded as usual, but we still had a great time.  Meg had one of her jokes used at the Laugh Floor and we all realized that we were lucky to have ridden Pirates of the Caribbean.  It was closed for refurbishment.  We almost made it back on the Seven Dwarfs Mine Ride, but it closed due to a technical problem.  We finished the evening by shopping at the Emporium.  It is my favorite place to shop on Disney property.  I found a handbag that I had wanted and Meg picked up a pair of Minnie Mouse shoes.

We were too late to get anything except for pizza back at the Boardwalk.  Doug ordered room service and we all like their chicken wings and chocolate cake.  I packed everything I could so that we may spend time at EPCOT tomorrow before our trip home.  Brett texted close to midnight and said that he just made it to his dorm room.  He got his studying done and was ready for the week.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Seven Dwarfs Mine Ride

We did sleep in until 9 a.m. or so this morning.  Everyone was glad for the extra sleep.  We had breakfast in the lounge.  Their fresh fruit and crescent rolls were wonderful. We caught the bus to Magic Kingdom and arrived just as our first fast pass to Space Mountain was expiring.  Meg, Cam and Brett made it with a minute to spare.  On our way to the Mad Hatter's Tea Party we ran into Alice in Wonderland.  Brett decided to wait and have his picture taken with her.  She has long been on of his favorites since his role as the executioner many years ago.  While we were waiting on Alice and the White Rabbit, Cameron spied Tigger and Winnie the Pooh.  He ran to be first in line and had his picture taken with them.

After the character meet and greet it was time for our fast passes to the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Ride.  We couldn't wait to ride it as we saw it being built on our trip last Spring.  Although short, it was an awesome addition to the park.  We tunneled through the mine and rode over the mountain.  Once we finished we enjoyed Mickey's Philharmagic.  Cam picked out his second shirt - a picture of Donald that said "The Official Angry Bird."

We were able to ride Splash Mountain and then they rode on Big Thunder Mountain. Everyone was excited to have ridden all three mountains twice within 24 hours.  Cameron and I headed to Gaston's tavern after the mountain rides as he wanted to try Le Fou's Brew.  It came in a souvenir mug and was surprisingly delicious.  We were able to shop at Mickey's Emporium before traveling back to the Boardwalk.   This time rode the monorail to Epcot and walked back.  We decided to have dinner at the Big River Brewing Company on the Boardwalk.  It was nice to eat outside.  For the second time today we saw a seagull swoop down and try to take someone's food.  Luckily, they left us alone.

We walked over to Fantasia mini-golf, but it was too crowded to play today.  We caught the bus to Downtown Disney once we left there.  It took awhile to get there and Downtown Disney was packed.  We all had fun shopping, however, and found some great items.  Brett really liked the Oswald the Rabbit shirt he found and plans to wear it home tomorrow.  Cam bought an Emperor Zurg gun and Meg picked up some gifts for her friends.

We spent the rest of the evening at EPCOT once again.  Brett wanted to catch Finding Nemo before he left.  Doug was finally able to try the avocado margarita we had read about.  It definitely was an interesting tasting drink.  We made it back to the Boardwalk for desserts and then enjoyed the street performers from our balcony.  It was the earliest that we had made it in, but worth it to enjoy the Boardwalk.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes

It was definitely warmer today and we all enjoyed the sunshine.  It doesn't have to be hot for all of us to have a great time at Disney World, but it was an added bonus.  We started the morning at Animal Kingdom.  The first stop was Dinoland and the Dinosaur ride.  Cam and I watched Jurassic Park Thursday night which made the Dinosaur ride even better.  After that Cam picked out a great shirt.  It had a T-Rex on it and it said, "If you're happy and you know it, clap your . . . oh!"

They rode Primeval Whirl before heading over to Expedition Everest.  Everyone had a great time on that.  We used our second fast pass to ride the Safari.  We saw a lot of animals including one of my favorites - the Okapi.  The four of them rode the Kali River Rapids ride.  Cam even talked Doug into going a second time.  From there we headed back to the Boardwalk so everyone could change.  The snacks in the lounge were delicious and we enjoyed them before heading to Hollywood Studios.

One of the big highlights of the day was running into King Louie and Baloo while we were in Animal Kingdom.  Cameron and my Dad play with his King Louie all of the time, so we had to get pictures.  Brett and Meg even joined Cam.  Meg said she was scarred for life as she had never been hugged so much.  Dad enjoyed the picture we sent back and Cam and I could talk of nothing else.

Since we did not get to ride everything we wanted yesterday we thought we would try this afternoon.  Rock N Roller Coaster was closed, but we make it on the Great Movie Ride, Star Tours and Muppet 3-D Vision.  Everyone wanted to check out the shops including the Villains in Vogue store.  Brett found an awesome Villains frame and a print to fit inside.  Cam was happy with his bell from the Tower of Terror.

We walked back to the hotel once again to drop off our purchases and then went to EPCOT.  Meg and Brett wanted a pretzel from Germany once again and Cam was in the mood for a funnel cake.  We enjoyed the treats while we walked to the other end of the park to catch the monorail to Magic Kingdom  We had decided yesterday that we wanted to make it to all four parks in one day.  I am not sure that we have ever accomplished that feat.

Magic Kingdom was crowded when we arrived, but we were able to get on Splash Mountain as it was a cool evening.  By the end of the night Brett, Meg and Cam were also able to ride Space Mountain and Big Thunder Mountain as well.  I enjoyed the Jungle Cruise, Pirates of the Caribbean, the Haunted Mansion and Peter Pan.  We tortured Brett by making him ride Small World.  Before we left we rode Winnie the Pooh and Aladdin's Magic Carpets as well.  Cam was happy about that as Triceratops Spin shut down when we got on it this morning.

We left close to the end of the night at Magic Kingdom and were back in our room at 1:45 a.m.  We were proud of the fact that we made it to all four parks in one day.  We are also glad to be able to sleep in a little bit tomorrow.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Even with a Delay . . . A Great First Day

We had breakfast in the hotel and then caught the 7:00 a.m. shuttle to the airport.  Brett had already left on his shuttle from Bloomington.  The trip was easy for both of us, although longer for Brett.  We made it to the terminal without any problems.  Unfortunately, our 10:10 a.m flight was delayed.  It was stuck in Providence.  At first we were told that we would be leaving at 12:10, but that was pushed back to 1:10.  Doug tried to get us on an earlier flight, but that was completely booked.  He and I were both very concerned as a winter storm warning was reported for Indianapolis and there were only two flights after ours.  The Heinisch children handled it wonderfully.  They played games on the iPad and the iPhones.  They challenged Grandpa and each other to trivia crack.  They ate lunch and checked out the airport shops.  When it was finally announced that our plane had left Providence and was on the way everyone cheered.

I was extremely nervous about flying.  Even though we flew almost annually when I was a child, I had developed a fear of flying several years ago.  I wasn't sure how I would handle the turbulence or the takeoff and landing.  I sat with Meg and Cam and overall did very well.  I hoped I would sleep, but I wasn't able to.  I think waiting that long in the airport really helped.  Instead of being anxious I was ready to get out of the airport and on our way.  Cameron really enjoyed flying.  He said it felt like a ride from Disney World.  Meg liked flying as well, but it bothered her ears.  She found a trick to finally unplug them and that helped immensely.

The flight landed early, so we only lost a little over 2 hours of our day in Disney.  We caught the Magic Express and headed straight to the Boardwalk.  Much to our surprise they were waiting for us and had upgraded us to the same room we had last year.  Instead of the standard club level we received the deluxe club level.  It was a $1500 bonus and much appreciated by our family as we loved the balcony and the extra room.

Once we checked in we headed straight to Disney Hollywood Studios.  We decided to take the boat, but may try walking the next time as the trip one way was 30 minutes.  We had fast passes for Star Tours that we were unable to use because of our delay, but made it to Toy Story Mania with a few minutes to spare.  Cam and Brett then headed to Twilight Tower of Terror and we enjoyed Disney's "One Man, One Dream."  After a quick bite to eat we all then secured our seats for Fantasmic.  We were rained out last year and wanted to make sure we caught it this year.  It was a little chilly waiting, but well worth it.  Everyone enjoyed it, especially Brett as this is one of his favorites.

We walked back to the Boardwalk and decided that was the way to go in the future as it only took us 15 minutes.  We enjoyed the desserts in the lounge and then spent the rest of the evening at EPCOT as they had extra magic hours.  We were able to watch Illuminations plus ride Test Track, Soarin', Figment and the Mexican boat ride.  We were also able to walk the countries, eat German pretzels and check off several of the top ten drinks at Disney World for Doug.  It was a wonderful evening and well worth the three hour delay this morning.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

On Our Way

Today was a hurried and rushed day.  I was up early even though we had a delay to get the rest of our toiletries packed and the last minute necessities in the bags.  Doug decided last night that he wanted to spend the night in Indy so we did not have to worry about the cold and driving early in the morning.  We found a hotel near the airport that provided shuttle service for only $5 extra dollars, so we reserved a room.

We planned to leave at 7 tonight, but Cameron's practice was cancelled again for cold weather and blowing snow.  Meg still had hers, but we were able to make it home and be on the road by 6.  I was concerned about the wind, but overall it was an easy drive.  It was about five degrees warmer once we got to Kokomo.  The hotel was easy to find and had a restaurant nearby.  Everyone was excited to be on the first leg of our journey.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

And the Cold Continues

This has to be the coldest February that I can ever remember.  Tonight all after school activities were cancelled and a delay was already called for tomorrow because of the cold and wind.  Thus, we could not have practice and Cam's first fourth grade practice was cancelled as well.  Once we got home Cyndi texted and said that she was going to postpone the library board meeting as well.

I know a lot of people have been complaining about the weather, but I haven't found it as depressing as last year.  The cold is a challenge, but the snow made us all homebound last year.  This year we can get out and about.  Tonight the students were disappointed that their practice was cancelled and several of the library board members wanted to still meet.  I decided, however, to use the bonus time to get ready for Florida.  We had packed a lot over the weekend, but still had some incidentals to get together.  Cam and Meg enjoyed packing as well and we were able to finish well before bedtime.  We are all excited for Florida.  It will be hard to sleep tonight.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

A Fortunate Break

Brett left DC just in time on Sunday.  The blizzard that hit us dumped snow on the city and closed almost all of it today.  Even the Smithsonian was not able to open.  I am so glad that Brett made it home safely and that he had such a wonderful time.  At one of the last events he attended he met Vincente Fox, a former President of Mexico.  He took a picture with him and talked of his speech to the youth attending the conference.

I could not believe it when he posted the picture.  I was just talking to his Spanish teacher from high school about Brett's knowledge of Mexican history and the Mexican presidents.  I sent the picture to Frank right away.  What an awesome experience for Brett.  I know it is one he will never forget.

Monday, February 16, 2015

President's Day

For the last two years Wawasee has given us President's Day off.  Meg, Cam and I made the most of it.  I hadn't felt like doing much yesterday, so it was nice to get out of the house today.  We started at piano and then headed to Target.  We were able to buy all of the supplies we need for Disney and then made it to the 1 p.m. Spongebob 3-D movie.  It wasn't quite as good as we expected, but we had fun.

On the way home we stopped at Wal-Mart for Cam's Pokemon cards.  He was able to buy the two tins that he had saved up for.  He was pretty happy with his purchase.  I bought the food for this week's FACS classes and made it home by the time Doug got here.

Cal spent a lot of his afternoon at Mom's and playing basketball.  He, Jayce and Harry ate at Buffalo Wild Wings tonight.  Meg went to the girls sectional final with Dad and Doug and I went to dinner.  It was great to have a three day weekend.  I believe we made the most of it.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Valentine's Day of a Different Sorts

Yesterday was Valentine's Day.  In years past we would have gone out for dinner, but had decided even before the blizzard that we would stay in last night.  We gave all of the Heinisch children their favorite candy and money to spend.  Doug surprised me with flowers and Fannie Mae.  He also bought me a purple teapot.  I have wanted one for quite awhile and it is the perfect size.  I decided last week to buy him new pots and pans for Valentine's Day.  He has talked about getting ones for awhile, so I thought this would be the perfect time.

I spent a lot of time researching different brands and colors before I finally settle on a Food Network copper set.  The reviews were very good and the price was right.  Doug used them last night and tonight and so far so good.  I know this probably wasn't the most romantic Valentine's we have ever spent, but I thoroughly enjoyed it.  Hanging out with the Heinisch children playing Wii and watching the dunk contest was the perfect night for us.  

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Valentine's Day Blizzard

We left early this morning for Westview as we had a seventh and eighth grade tournament.  The weather forecasted was ominous, but we were excited to play as we have had so many games cancelled.  The games were very physical and the girls held their own.  Meg was proud of her role as Queen of the Bruisers and I was impressed that they did not fold.  We have definitely been scoring more than we ever did last year and although we lost the first game we could hold our heads up high as we gave it our all.

The second game was close and once again I saw a lot of improvement in my team.  Meg's passing and strength has increased a lot this year.  Several teammates have stepped up so it does not all have to fall on her shoulders now.  Everyone was happy with our play today, but by the end of the second game worry about the weather greatly increased.

Around 12:30 we got word that there were two different accidents due to white out conditions.  Both blocked our path on the way home and involved a dozen or more vehicles.  The head of transportation called Sharon to tell her that they would pay for us to stay overnight if needed.  She talked with the Hapners and they said they would lead us home if she wanted to try it.  Another parent followed behind and we left the school around 2 p.m.

The first part of the trip was not as bad as I thought it would be.  There was definitely a lot of blowing snow, but in the bus we could still see pretty well.  Once we got to Ligonier, however, it became more treacherous.  US 6 was closed due to the accidents, so we had to take a county road.  It was difficult to see.  That slowed us down considerably.  We came upon a semi that had slid off the road and blocked our path.  Luckily, we were able to go around him, but had to detour once again.

The trip to State Road 15 was slow, but we were able to move along.  Sharon and I wanted to take the side roads and avoid the overpass, but Karyl thought it would be best to stay on the main road.  Once we got to the top of the overpass we came to a standstill.  It was a complete white out and neither of us could see.  We talked to Karyl and she suggested we inch a long, watch the guardrail and she would tell us what color and how many vehicles were coming in the Northbound lane.

I was extremely nervous, but the girls handled it well.  Meg started talking about a Bible story involving Jesus and the winds.  Before we knew it we were at the bottom of the hill and creeped along the path to school.  We were in our home by 4 p.m. It took me quite awhile to let go of the anxiety that trip produced.  Sharon did a great job driving and the parents were extremely helpful.  I don't ever want to be involved in a trip like that again, but it gave Sharon and I a story that Jayce and Cal will never be able to top!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Two Decades Old

Today is Brett's 20th birthday and he had an awesome day.  He left last night with IU's Young Americans for Liberty for a conference in DC.  Tonight they attended several seminars and Brett was able to take photos with several politicians and authors that he was excited to meet for the first time and several that he met last year.

It was so much fun today to read all of his Facebook posts and see the pictures.  I loved that at the end of the night he met several new friends at the restaurant in the hotel that were from different countries.  They invited him to sit with him and once he explained that it was his birthday they bought him dinner.  I just love Brett's enthusiasm for life and his ability to make friends wherever he goes.  He is a dedicated student, son and brother.  Can't wait to see where life takes him in the next decade.  

Thursday, February 12, 2015

CT Scan

I have been struggling with shortness of breath since last Saturday.  It is most prevalent when I am trying to sleep and several times I woke up last night gasping for breath.  I have tried increasing my Nexium as I thought it could be acid reflux.  I do not cough, just feel as though someone is squeezing my throat from the inside while sitting on my chest.

Today I called Dr. Mulry as last night made me nervous.  It must have made him nervous as well as he sent me immediately to the hospital for a CT Scan.  He was concerned that I had a blood clot in my lungs.  That scared me, so I had Dad take me there as soon as I left the doctor's office.  They were very attentive got me in immediately.  The scan was done fairly quickly.  We waited almost an hour for the results and fortunately there was no clot.  Dr. Mulry called and said that I have pleurisy and need to take anti-inflammatories and ulcer medication.  If it is not better by Monday I will have to return to him for  a cortisone shot.

I was instantly relieved.  By the time we got the results Doug was at the hospital as well.  He took me back to school so I could coach Meg's team.  I couldn't yell and I felt terrible, but I made it through.  We played very well for three quarters.  At halftime it was 18-10 Lakeview.  Meg had made a phenomenal pass to one of her teammates as time was about to expire and we scored as the buzzer rang.  The third quarter was disastrous, but overall I was thrilled with how well they did.  It has been great to see them improve.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

"B" Practice

Tonight we had the dreaded B practice for basketball.  We have had a lot less of those than we had last year and I am very thankful for that.  The girls stay after school and work on homework.  I usually use the time grading papers or making lesson plans.  It makes for a long evening, however, and the girls struggle to focus once we get started.  The new 11 man drill that we have had been using a lot at practice has helped to re energize our team.  It's challenging to stay intense when we only have had three games.  For now we'll keep on trying to come up with new drills and games to keep it more interesting.  

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Soccer Open Gym

Once Cal quit basketball he decided to spend his Tuesday and Thursday nights at soccer open gym.  It is held at the middle school and from what Doug and I have heard there are close to 35 boys that are attending.  Cal has really enjoyed reconnecting with his freshmen soccer team.  There are 16 juniors that play and they have a great time trash talking each other.

One night he did come home and tell us that he shoved one of the players into the bleachers when they were going for the ball and the other player cut his eye open.  Cal told us not to worry, however, as the custodian was there and said that it looked like it would be fine.  For now we are thrilled that he has found a positive outlet for his energy.  We know that he will return to tennis in the fall, but it is wonderful that he has a group of friends that enjoy competing just as much as he does.  It is nice to know also that the custodian is looking out for them!

Monday, February 9, 2015


Cam and I have played Wii several times over the past few days.  I have to admit that I do enjoy playing it.  I am not always the best, but it is fun to try all of the different games.  One that we discovered several years ago that we still enjoy is Balance Boat.

The first time we played it was on a warm spring day.  Cameron had had a terrible asthma attack, so we could not let him go outside.  He didn't want to lay around anymore, so he asked me to try this new game he had on Wii Party.  There was a boat and Miis that we had to balance on a mast.  There were mini games to win so that our Miis would be the same size.  We tried the first few times and watched our Miis slide off into the ocean.  We laughed and were ever amazed by our inability to conquer this game.

Before we knew it two hours had passed by and at the end we finally balanced the boat with all 20 Miis cheering us on.  At the end there was a congratulations banner.  It was at this time that we realized that we had only beaten the beginner level.  To this day we still laugh every time we start a new round and one of us yells out "Congratulations, you took two hours to beat beginner!"

Tonight we actually made it to the 14th Mii on expert level before we slid off into the ocean. Although the game is fun, it isn't the challenge of the game that keeps me coming back.  It is the fun we have had and the memories that Cameron and I have made together watching those Miis swing their legs and arms wildly hoping to stay on for one more round.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

I Like Being Overcommitted

A couple of weeks ago I talked to Meg about being overcommitted.  In a short period of time she was to compete in the ISMAA piano and clarinet competition as well as the county spelling bee.  This along with her school work, basketball and social commitments seemed like a lot to me.  She listened as I talked, but then finally said, "Mom, I like being overcommitted."

I realized when she said that that she gets that honestly.  I have definitely found myself overcommitted this past year and Doug has always liked to be involved in as much as possible.  Meg handled her obligations well.  She earned a silver in both the piano and clarinet solos, practiced hard at basketball, received an A on her Geometry quiz and had time left to hang out with her friends at Bittersweet and even tobogganing with Kaitlin's youth group this afternoon.

At first Meg was a little disappointed yesterday when she was given a silver rating.  Once we started the drive home, however, she said, "I've been thinking.  Some of the students today have made music their life.  They have practiced for weeks and months, and that is great for them.  I know I could have done that as well and maybe earned a gold.  I am happy, though.  I really only practiced my piece for four days plus did so much more.  A silver is good enough for me."  What a great attitude to have!

Saturday, February 7, 2015

A Houseful

Tonight we had a houseful of high school boys.  Cameron Adams had spent most of the afternoon here before the Northridge v. Wawasee game.  He and Cal had fun getting dressed up for the "Green Out" theme and spent a lot of time coming up with fun sayings to put on their posters.  Cam and Meg even decided to go to the game.  I believe it was the first one they have been too since Cal quit.

Once the game was over Cal texted to see if a couple of friends could come back to the house.  It ended up being a basement full with Alex, Jayce, Cameron, Cal, Korey, Zeb, Caleb, Kyle and Rasmus.  He is visiting for the week from Denmark and the boys had fun hanging out with him.  There was a loud game of knee basketball, several rounds of pool, a snowball fight and a tray of brownies eaten before the night was over.  Cam joined in on some of the fun and even beat Jayce in a game of ping pong.

Most of the boys were gone by midnight.  Jayce and Cameron stayed here.  It is nice that Cal feels comfortable having his friends here.  They are a fun group to have over.  I appreciate them including Cam.  Meg wisely stays away from the group for now.

Friday, February 6, 2015

A Quiet Night at Home

Tonight Doug took Cam and Meg skiing/snowboarding on the last ski trip of the season.  Meg said that it was the best one yet.  Cam agreed.  The snow was great and the crowd was low.  Both had a lot of fun and I appreciate Doug taking them.  Cam will be ready for the big hills next year, and all three made it through the season uninjured.

Cal spent a good portion of the evening at my parents.  They had Dairy Queen and watched The Simpsons.  Mom was diagnosed with pneumonia this week, so she has been taking it easy.  Meg talked her into going to the doctor on Wednesday and is glad that she did.  It was nice that Cal could spend some time with them.

I stayed in all night.  I caught up on school work and laundry.  I finally watched The Jane Austen Book Club.  I had debated about it for quite awhile, but am glad that I took the time to give it a try.  I absolutely loved it.  It made the evening very enjoyable.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Weather Delays

The weather this week has definitely changed many of our schedules.  We had another delay today and most schools in the area cancelled.  I was happy that school was in session.  I would love to get out on May 28th as we are currently scheduled.  It would be the first time we have finished  before June 1st in a long time.

I do realize, however, that everyone may not feel the same as I do.  The roads have been treacherous this week - some of the worst that I have ever driven on.  They are icy and bumpy in the morning and slushy and slick in the afternoon.  It is supposed to warm up this week.  That would be great.  Maybe the roads will be clear by Monday!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015


I had an all day meeting in Rochester today in regards to the FACS ECA (End of Class Assessment) that I have to give each of my three 8th grade classes yearly.  I was really dreading going as I thought it would not be of much benefit to me.  Happily, I was wrong.  We spent the time reviewing the readiness test, rewriting the ECA, talking about the purpose of both, calculating cut scores and sharing curriculum ideas.  By the time I left at two I felt pretty good about my own classes.  The director looked at my scores and I appear to be doing well teaching the material that the state wants 8th grade FACS students to master.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

County Spelling Bee

Meg competed in the county spelling bee this evening and did well.  She made it through the sixth round, but the word "navary" knocked her out as she put an e in for the second a.  I had never even heard of the word and did not remember practicing that one with her.  She was disappointed, but Doug said she did well.  They both agreed that the runner-up was given a slew of easy words starting with "totem."

I am proud of her.  It takes a lot of work to win two school spelling bees in a row.  I know she worked hard to make it to the county once again.  It never mattered to me how she finished.  Meg's high work ethic in regards to academics is apparent and that skill will take her far in life.  That's all we could ever ask for.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Snow Day

I am not sure that this snow storm has been labeled as a blizzard, but we did get over 15 inches of snow from Saturday night into early Monday morning.  The snow plows had been called off in certain areas, but we were plowed out by 11 a.m.  Doug used his time off from work to try out his cross country skis.  He hasn't used them in several years, and enjoyed skiing through the neighborhood.  

Cam played outside for a good part of the morning.  He then decided that he wanted to earn some money, so he shoveled the back patio for Doug and then came in to help me clean.  I was able to thoroughly clean the refrigerator and kitchen while he wiped down the doors inside our house.  When all was said and done he had $5 to add to his Pokemon fund.

Doug, Meg, Cam and I also had time to play Beat the Parents.  So far they have destroyed us each time we sit down.  While they went sledding I worked on finishing my lessons plans for the week of February 9th, so I am caught up for the next two weeks.  I can't plan much beyond that as I don't know how many more delays or snow days we will have.  

Once they returned we planned our 4th of July vacation.  After much discussion we have decided to go to Terre Haute to the holocaust museum.  From there we will head to Missouri to visit the home of Laura Ingalls Wilder, the Frontier Museum featuring the Oregon Trail and Harry S. Truman's home.  We are all pleased with the plans.  

Cal had a fun day as well.  Alex and Jayce came over for part of the afternoon.  Alex said his road was driveable which surprised us as it is a country dirt road.  They all played pool and basketball.  There was a lot of Super Bowl talk as the game was foremost on all sports talk shows today.

As of right now we have a delay for tomorrow's start of school.  The roads have been cleared and are a lot better than the past few days.  Doug has a normal work schedule, so back to the real world for us.  It was definitely a nice break.  

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Super Bowl Sunday

This will be a Super Bowl Sunday that the Heinisch children will remember for years to come.  It started out pretty quiet.  Cal, Doug and Meg served, lectored and ushered at 8 a.m. mass where the amount of people working the mass almost outnumbered those attending.  Religion was cancelled today in anticipation of the impending snow storm that some news stations have predicted to be a blizzard.  The snow was pretty light to start, but when Cal, Doug and Meg returned it had definitely picked up in severity.

Cal and Doug worked on our driveway and then headed to Mom's to help shovel hers.  When they returned we decided to try the Knights of Columbus annual Super Bowl party.  Doug had see cars there when he drove by and was confident they were still having it.  Meg and Cam had been looking forward to the Goralczyk's wings, so through the snow we drove.  There was a party going on and in all honesty more people attended then I would have ever dreamed.  The wings did not disappoint the Heinisch faithful and Meg finished off at least twelve.  There was enough time for pool, BINGO and visiting before the snow made driving impassable.

We settled in at home around 3 p.m.  Doug had made a run to the grocery yesterday so we were prepared for the storm that raged on outside.  The Super Bowl started after 6 p.m.  Doug wore his treasured Brady jersey - one that has become a traveling Heinisch jersey as Meg wore it to school on Friday and Cal wore it to the game on Friday night.  The game was close throughout and everyone stayed glued to it.  We all chose our favorite appetizers to snack on throughout - meatballs, queso dip, and cream cheese with crab.  There were some good commercials this year, but overall we thought they were lacking the flamboyance of years past.  The halftime show was also interesting complete with dancing sharks.  The game, however, did not disappoint at all.  Much to Doug and Cal's happiness the Patriots won on a last minute interception.  It was a great way to spend our snowed in Super Bowl.  School has already been cancelled and much to everyone's surprise so has Doug's work.  We look forward to a day off tomorrow.