Thursday, July 2, 2015

League Champions

The baseball season came to an end last night with Justin's Canham Maytag Twins winning the coach pitch championship game 14-4 over the Phillies.
 The end of the season tournament started last week and each game is win or you are done.  In the first game, the Twins won a defensive battle over the Angels 5-4.
 Then the next game, the Twins beat the Tigers 25-13.  Justin's team has been up and down all season.  They would win one and then lose two, but when it was tournament time the defense and the bats came to life.  They didn't hit this well all season long.
 During the regular season each batter is given seven pitches and if you don't hit the ball the tee is brought out to hit off.  But, during the tournament, no tee is used, so, if you don't hit you are out.  These kids did not want to get out, therefore, the bats were swinging and connecting.
 It was fun to watch them improve as the season went on and winning is always a good thing.
 At the end of the game, when they were told to line up to shake hands, they were asking if they won or lost because the score isn't posted anywhere and they have no clue what the score is.  They all jumped up and down when they found out they had won the championship.
 The team received a trophy and each player received a medal for winning.  Justin was pretty proud of his medal!
 This little boy is Caleb.  Justin and Caleb were the only kids on the team from Norfolk Catholic.  They were talk, play catch, and have fun together.  Caleb is an excellent ball player!  His dad was the team's assistant coach.  Caleb usually was the lead off batter and played first base.  He catches anything close and hits like a champ.  His Dad, Brian, played college baseball at Wayne State College and also coached for awhile.  You can tell the time he has spent working with Caleb by watching this little boy play.

Take care,
Michelle

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

A Few 4-H Fair Projects

Last Saturday was the 4-H entry day for all non-perishable projects.  The girls had a fast and furious couple of weeks to get everything completed.  There was one day that I think you could have gotten high from the paint fumes in the garage.  We had projects all over the house in various stages of completion, but in the end, Cara got everything done, Erica had everything except for one item, and Ashlin didn't get two things completed.  This isn't bad considering how many entries the girls had.
 This year the girls did quite a few of the same items with variations to each of them.  For example, they each made these wooden letters.  Three purple ribbons on these letters.

 They each did a project that involved recycling an old softball and turning it into a flower.  The one pictured above is Cara's.  All three girls received purples on this project.
 This burlap stenciled table runner caused Cara and I fits, but it received a purple ribbon and Cara said the judge loved it.  This was NOT as easy as I thought it was going to be.
 All three girls used modge podge to adhere fabric to terra cotta pots.  The judge was not thrilled with this project, although, it was completed at a 4-H project day.  After the judge had looked at a few of these pots, she was questioning her ribbon choice on the first few pots.  I am wondering if she went back and changed some ribbon placings because many kids completed this project.  I can't wait to put actual plants in these bright patterned pots.
 Another recycled project the girls completed was one that involved using empty toilet paper rolls and turning them into designs.  Cara and Erica made crosses and Ashlin made a sunburst design.
We will be back at the fair the week after the 4th of July to enter all our baking, flowers and gardening.  More photos of projects and ribbons will be coming later. 

Take care,
Michelle

Monday, June 29, 2015

Boating with Cousins

 We headed to Lewis and Clark over the weekend to get some boating in and we picked up cousins Nick & Jake on the way from Grandma & Grandpa Leader's house.  They were up for the weekend with their family.
 The water is still not the warmest and the wind was blowing more than usual, but the kids were ready to tube, swim and have fun.

Hard to believe that these two, Nick and Cara, are going to be freshman this fall.
 After boating for a few hours, it was time to head home.  Erica had to babysit early and Nick & Jake had to head back to Lincoln.  Plans are in the works for the next boating adventure.

Take care,
Michelle

Friday, June 26, 2015

Celebrating Sue's Birthday

Sue, one of our neighbors and friends, celebrated her 50th birthday this week.  Some friends and co-workers organized a surprise party for her one day after work. 
 When our kids found out about the party, they were all in to celebrate.  They all hang out at Sue & Sienna's house quite a bit.  Sue is like a second mother in the neighborhood looking out for them, helping with carpool, watching movies with them, etc.
Take care,
Michelle

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

JC Youth Camp

Cara left last Wednesday for JC (Jesus Christ) Youth Camp.  This camp is for freshman in our church parish.  This camp is to help them prepare for Confirmation next March and to help them explore their faith and grow closer to Jesus.
 The camp is divided into two groups each going to Tintern different weeks in June.  Cara was in Group #2.  The campers all met in the gym at school and did an ice breaker before loading the bus and leaving for camp.
 Cara was excited, but nervous to leave for camp.  Most of Cara's class all chose to attend camp the second week.
 Tintern is located a few miles south of Oakdale, Nebraska.  It is about 30-40 minutes from Norfolk.  Actually, the students go to Tintern for class retreats during the school year.  The camp is all geared around Jesus Christ.  Their are small group sessions, crafts, songs, large group sessions, speakers, testimonies about faith, camp fires, confession and daily Mass.
 It is a tradition at camp to have a mud fight.  All electronic devices are banned from camp.  There aren't even clocks.  The campers have no concept of time.  The adult counselors have phones in case of emergency, but none of the campers. 

I went to Tintern on Thursday as a volunteer in the kitchen.  A few other Moms and I arrived at Tintern at six in the morning and started cooking for the day.  We served French toast and sausages for breakfast and tacos with salads for lunch.  Then we started the supper of chicken and rice and also made up breakfast egg bakes for the next morning.  The parents work in shifts to get all the meals prepared for about 60 people.  The campers are assigned chores to complete three times per day, such as, take out garbage, do dishes, clean bathrooms, etc.
 On Sunday, the parents arrive at camp for a noon Mass, a closing discussion, and lunch.  Then each camper goes home with their parents.  Cara came home exhausted, but happy and faith changed.  She made some new friends and she grew close to those in her small group.  Cara was influenced by the testimonies of faith and struggles told by counselors at camp.  Cara's small group was led by Michelle Johnson, an adult counselor and Michaela Heimes, a peer counselor.
Take care,
Michelle

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

30th Class Reunion

 Saturday night was Keith's 30th Class Reunion at the golf course.  The class of 1985 graduated with 42 members.  One classmate is deceased and 21 classmates were at the party.
 We had a broasted chicken dinner meal with salads and dinner rolls.  The class talked about old times and then everyone headed into Bloomfield for the street dance.  Some of the classmates that attended hadn't been back in years.
Take care,
Michelle

Monday, June 22, 2015

Bloomfield Q125 Celebration

This last weekend was Bloomfield's Q125 Celebration!  Grandpa and Grandma Leader live in Bloomfield and it was also Keith's 30th Class Reunion.  Therefore, it was a time to celebrate in the small town of Bloomfield.  Friday night we went up to listen to the Dueling Pianos and they were great.  Before we left town for the night, the kids watched the start and finish of the Glow Run which was held at the park.
 Saturday morning we were back in Bloomfield for the celebration parade.  We had a great spot at the beginning of the parade, right on Main Street and also in the shade.
 Many floats featured large birthday cakes in honor of the celebration.

 Many of the surrounding small towns had entries in the parade, such as Wausa, Osmond, Belden, Crofton, Creighton, etc.  It was great to see these other small towns being so supportive.  The photo above is of the Wausa Vikings.  This is a constant in many parades.
 Also no small town parade is complete without the Shriners, fire trucks or tractors.
 Cousin Michael drove a fire truck through representing the City of Crofton.

 As you can see the parade was long.  This is from where we sat looking downtown Bloomfield.
 It was a HOT morning!  Therefore, these two men representing Lewis and Clark had to be dying in these fur coats.  After the parade, the kids weighed how much candy they collected during the parade.  The bucket and bag of candy loot weighed in at 6 pounds.
After the parade, Keith stopped by the teacher/staff reunion to visit with some of his old teachers from Bloomfield High.  He enjoyed visiting with them.  Then we had lunch at Grandma & Grandpa Leader's house before heading across the street to play and watch the mud volleyball tournament.

 Later in the afternoon, we took in the Quilt Show at the Community Center.  Then we headed to the fairgrounds for the free Kid's Games and a craft/vendor show.  Also at the fairgrounds, visitors could check out The Wall which featured the names of soldiers killed while defending our country during various wars.

It was a great day with many activities!

Take care,
Michelle