Tuesday, February 24, 2015

BGC Basketball

Wooden, Krzyzewski, Ryan,.....Swanson!?  Yes, I now consider myself in this hallowed group of coaches.  Why is this you ask?  Well, we just closed out an undefeated season in Youth Developmental Basketball.   Although, my coaching was essentially making sure the kids remembered what number sub they were.  I want to think that my little contribution went a long way in helping these Kindergartners, 1st and 2nd graders stay focused on the game.  In all honesty, I'm not really even sure about the undefeated part.  Our sharp shooter, Brent, informed us before every game that we were 15-0, I was a bit skeptical being that we had only played 10 games.  I did know that we won those 10 games though.  This was because our player/coach Talon would always inform me that we were up 10.  Funny thing was that, according to him, we were always up 10, even right after the opening tip.  The MVP in this coach's eyes, and they are a bit biased eyes, was one Cullen Swanson.  This was Cullen's first year playing basketball.  Which is odd because I've been watching him shoot baskets since he was 2yrs old.  Typical of Cullen, he jumped in with both feet.   If we played at 4, he wanted me to pick him up early so he could shoot around before the game.  If we played at 5, we wouldn't leave the Boys and Girls Club until 6:30.    It was a fun year all around, it's such a wonderful thing, watching these little kids and the excitement when a shot went in or a good pass was made.  The season ended on a perfect note.  Our big guy, William, got the ball with 5 seconds left, turned around and threw up a long jump shot and in it went as the buzzer sounded.  It was for the win, by 10.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015


Both Cullen and Simone have advanced belt levels.  Cullen is now a cammo gold belt and Simone is a gold belt.  Simone was both nervous and excited for her first testing.  They were quizzed on their belt colors and mastered their 7 curriculum moves.  Watch out bullies and bad guys.  The Swanson kids are fierce!

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Little rippers

Ski season is here again!  We bought season passes to Mt. La Crosse (which I affectionately refer to as MOUNTAIN La Crosse).  We need to ski 5 times in order to be ahead of the ski pass price.  So far this season, we have been to the mountain 6 times.  Mission accomplished.  Cullen and Simone are both little rippers - tearing down the hill and carving turns.  Simone is no longer using the edgie-wedgie (the device keeping the toes of the skis together to help beginners).  She likes the shorter skis from last year because they are easier for her to control.  Cullen has discovered a love of tree runs and jumps (all age appropriate of course)!  We took a trip to Wausau, WI  with our neighbors over new years to ski at Granite Peak.  We may have spent more time in the water park because of cold temps, but it was still fun!  Next ski trip:  Big Sky or bust!

Shiny II

I regret to inform our readers that Cullen's beloved pet fish, Shiny, was murdered.  Negligent homicide to be precise.

Three years ago, Shiny joined our family.  Dirk actually won him at the bottle-toss game during La Cross'e Octoberfest celebration.  We expected Shiny to live 1 week tops.  We believe he may have been the longest living carnie fish ever.

The story goes:  Simone and Quinn were playing in Cullen's room and proceeded to dump a whole can of fish food into his tank.  Cullen knew right away that his best fish was in trouble.  He and Dirk promptly cleaned the tank, but later that evening. Cullen noticed that Shiny was swimming upside down.  Dirk and I had a long talk with Cullen explaining that Shiny was sick and not actually doing tricks.  We went on to say that he might not make it through the night.  This set Cullen over the edge.  He cried and cried and cried himself to sleep that night,  "I am so worried about Shiny".  "I love Shiny so much".   Dirk and I laid in his bed and hugged our sweet boy as a cried into his pillow.  The next morning, Shiny was discovered dead in his tank.  Dirk asked Cullen if he wanted to help flush him and Cullen said that he couldn't bear to watch.

We then promised him that he could get a new pet fish.  Cullen picked out a beautiful goldfish whom he appropriately named Shiny II.  We are delighted to welcome another fish into the family and hope that Shiny II lives a long, prosperous life.

P.S.  You may be wondering if Simone paid the consequence for murdering Shiny I.  We did have a strong talk with her about taking care of pets and the fact that she should have known better.  We also told her that she was not responsible enough to have a pet fish of her own.  She has since been very nice to Shiny II.


The excitement of Christmas Morn.

This year, we had a very quiet and laid-back Christmas day.  The kiddos woke up to full stockings and Santa-wrapped gifts.  Dirk made a ham on the green egg (no pun intended).  Camp chewed on a new Christmas bone.  And we didn't leave the house!  The quiet day was a welcome change from the hectic school days/work days.   It was wonderful to sit around and enjoy of all our Christmas blessings.

Christmas with cousins.

Nothing beats hanging out with your cousins.  They are quite simply the best of both friends and family.  Cullen and Simone are blessed to have Mason, Dane, Jameson and Quinn in their lives.