Hazards Of Hockey

Oh the hazards of hockey. For us hockey parents we’re acutely aware of these hazards, but for the uninitiated it can be a bit scary. There are, of course, several different types of hazards ranging from financial to physical. It definitely takes a little bit of courage and craziness to be a hockey parent.

Unfortunately, today we were again reminded of the hazards of hockey. Late in the third period, Goalielocks was plowed into by one of their players. I’ve seen a lot of collisions in the crease, but this one was especially nasty. I knew immediately his game was over and probably his tournament.

Both boys were having trouble sitting up, so Coach P was supporting Goalielocks, while the ref supported the other player. From my vantage point, I could tell both players were completely out of it. Consequently, the coaches helped both players off the ice to the bench.

Once on the bench, they decided to send Goalielocks off as he was dizzy. When he got off the ice, he was out of it. Even though he was out of it, he was disappointed his game was over. Fortunately, he passed the baseline concussion tests. His pupils looked good, he knew where he was, where he’s from and the day of the week, so I was encouraged.

Post-game the coach at Merrimack College gave the boys a tour of their facilities. Our boys, Goalielocks included, really enjoyed the tour. Meanwhile, the parents appreciated how the coach explained the academic requirements for a division one athlete. Hopefully, this will motivate our boys to focus on their studies.

As we left the rink, I had planned to take a wait and see approach to the head injury. However, after our trip to Chic Fil-A, I knew I’d have to get him checked out. He placed his order, I paid and then ran to the restroom while they made our food. When I got back to the counter, he asked me if I had ordered the drink. He had completely forgotten that he ordered himself a Dr. Pepper.

Consequently, we ended up in an urgent care center. Goalielocks was reticent to go as he didn’t want to be told he couldn’t play. In the end, it was, as I thought, a minor concussion. He’ll be out for at least a week, but we’ll need to follow up with his pediatrician once back in Florida. He’s pretty bummed as he played well this morning and was looking forward to his next game.

Nonetheless, it could have been much worse given the severity of the collision. So tonight instead of heading to the rink, we’re chilling in the room enjoying our room service.

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New England Weekend

We left balmy, beautiful South Florida for a New England weekend full of hockey. After yesterday’s events this is the perfect distraction for our boys. Fortunately, we had several of Goalielocks’ teammates on our flight into Boston.

I seem to remember the flight being shorter, but it seemed quite long. Consequently, I made good use of my time by watching Bad Moms 2 and Loving Vincent. Bad Moms 2 wasn’t nearly as good as the first one, but it was still funny.

On the other hand, Loving Vincent was absolutely masterful. It tells the story of the aftermath of Van Gogh’s life and death via the characters in his paintings through the paintings. Not only does it tell the story brilliantly, but it does so by animating his paintings in glorious fashion. I was completely transfixed on the film and can’t recommend it ugly enough.

Unfortunately, once we landed in Boston the hard work started for me. There’s a lot of freaking traffic from Boston all the way to New Hampshire! Whiskey tango foxtrot! We spent an hour and a half driving from the airport to the hotel. We’re entirely and completely exhausted!

Before settling in for the night we enjoyed a great dinner at the Pig’s Tail. We split poutine and eggplant with our friends. For the main course, we enjoyed flat iron steak and pizza. Now we’re off the bed as we are beyond tired.

Super Bowl Sunday

It’s super bowl Sunday!  I sure do wish my Vikes were playing, but oh well.  Unfortunately, according to Mick Jagger we can’t always get what we want.  So here I am cheering for the Patriots on account of the Philly fans poor behavior.  Thus far the game has been okay, but I am enjoying the commercials.  I love the tourism ad for Australia.  I’d probably follow Chris Hemsworth or his brother for that matter anywhere, but the ad was pitch perfect.  Moreover, I’d be curious to know the increase in flights to Australia after that ad.

JT’s half time performance just finished.  I love the tribute to Prince!  The city and stadium looked amazing lit up in purple.  Prince was an icon in that city and our state. Additionally, as a Gopher it was great seeing the University of Minnesota Marching Band out on the field backing up JT.  What an experience fr those kids!  His set was pretty good, but his outfit looked like he bought it at the local Mills Fleetfarm.  In fact, he may be leaving the Super Bowl to go hunting or something.

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We’re creatures of habit, so we have our usual chili cheese dip in the crock-pot for the evening.  Our sweet Athena is cuddling with us on the couch as we watch the big game.  Meanwhile, the BBQ rib thief Maya, is paying her penance in her crate.  Goalielocks was none to thrilled when she stole some of his ribs off the table.   In addition to our big game treats, I bought ribs for the boys tonight.  Goalielocks was thrilled.  Thank god for Target and cartwheel as I was able to save 20% on all three racks.

In honor of the big game tonight, I’d thought I’d share some of my favorite Super Bowl memes.

Tonight’s song performed by JT is “Suit & Tie.”  He performed this song tonight at the Super Bowl backed my by alma mater’s – the University of Minnesota – marching band.

Life In The Box

It was back to a life in the box for me as we headed to Coral Springs for the Mayor’s two games.  It’s never dull in the sin bin that is for darn sure.  I wasn’t that too busy in the first game, but the second game was different.  The first game we got off to a bit of a slow start and ended up losing 5-3.  Certainly, it would have been nice to win that one as it would have sealed a state tournament berth.

While the Hubby headed back north to take Goalielocks to his practed, I stayed in Springs with my Mayor.  We grabbed a quick bite in between games at McDonald’s for him and Dunkin for me.  I needed to ensure I had my pre-game coffee, so I wouldn’t mess up the mojo.  I had drunk my morning coffee at home instead of the rink per usual, so naturally that’s probably what messed up the morning game.  It’s a good thing us hockey moms aren’t superstitious or anything.

I grabbed my coffee and some oatmeal.  It was my first time trying Dunkin’s oatmeal and I have to say it was pretty darn good.  Fortunately, both McDonald’s and Dunkin are close to the rink, so we had no trouble getting back to the rink in time. As we waited around for the game to start, we were discussing our path to the state tournament. If we had won in the morning, we would have qualified.  Since we lost however, our team’s fate was in the hands of another team.  Needless to say, it is always better to be in control of your own destiny.

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As the zambonis took to the ice, I headed over to my place in the sin bin.  As they finished cleaning the ice, both teams and referees were ready to start the game.  I looked around and there was no score keeper to be seen.  Both referees tried to reach someone unsuccessfully to find a score keeper.  Consequently, yours truly ended up being the scorekeeper.

I have to say, I truly sympathize with the scorekeepers now. There’s a lot going on and the whole thing isn’t setup for a lefty.  The refs said I would start the game and not to worry about the penalties and such, but that wasn’t exactly accurate.  If you didn’t put the penalties up, you had to do the backwards math yourself.  No thank you!  Additionally, ladies there’s a reason men don’t like to read instructions.  Most of the time the instructions are poorly written or leave out key steps – as was the case with adding penalties to the clock.

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Fortunately, I had mostly figured it out (penalties included) by the end of the first period.  I am pretty sure, however, that the score sheets are made for people with 20/20 vision and super small and perfect writing.  Sadly, I fall into neither of those categories, which made filling out the score sheet quite the adventure.  By the third period, we were on run time, which made my life a bit easier.  Meanwhile, the Hubby is texting for updates and getting radio silence.   There was no way I could text and score keep all at once.

We ended up winning the game 9-1, but we lost one of our players in the process.  Late in the first, one of our D-men was checked and flew head first into the boards.  Can I tell you how scary that was?  From where we were sitting in the box, we could tell he was out cold.   Unfortunately, he ended up having to be transported to the hospital with a concussion.  It was certainly a very scary situation.  Thankfully, his mom just updated all of us and let us know that he’s home and will be okay.  Thank goodness!

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Post game, we ended up watching another U-12 A game as it would decide our fate.  Like I said, it is always better to decide your own fate than to leave it in somebody else’s hands.  It was nerve wracking and up to 23.7 seconds left in the 3rd it looked like our season would end early.  Only at 23.6 seconds, the Panthers scored a goal and sealed our fate.  Our squad is going to SAHOF!!!!  I couldn’t be happier for this team.  They work so hard and play so hard for each other that it is fun to watch.  Even on their worst days, they have each others’ backs.  I freaking love these kids and families.

Anyway, we’ve been home for almost 3 hours and my toes are still frozen.  Once that cold gets in your bones, it sure does not want to leave.  I’ll be making myself some nice chamomile tea to try and warm myself up.  Tonight’s song performed by PitBull, JLo and Claudia Leitte is “We Are One.”  The Mayor and I listened to this song as we drove back to the rink and it is the perfect song for him and his team.  Plus the hockey dads will like the samba dancers.

 

Choking

Well, it was a day full of choking.  When I say choking, I don’t mean the kinky 50 Shades stuff, I mean sports teams utterly out performing.  Once could say shitty decision leads to shitty outcomes, but that seems a bit obvious.  As a hardened Vikings fan, I knew tonight would be disappointing.  Consequently, I spent the first half of the game working out.  Fortunately, while they gave up touchdown after touchdown, I burned 632 calories.  (At least there was some winning today!)

 

My kids, however, have not yet accepted what it truly means to be a Minnesota fan.  You know, the team will build up your hope only to choke in dramatic and devastating fashion.  Come to think about it, I probably should have used disappointment or today’s title, however, that would be redundant.  Nevertheless as a consequence of the Vikes’ epic collapse, I have one kid in a full on melt down.  Truly, I think he thought the world was truly ending.  Like many fans, I would have loved for my team to win, but hey reality is reality.  I simply don’t get my hopes up anymore.

Despite their epic loss, I love my Vikings and fellow fans.  How many organizations have a fan base that would raise well over $200,000 for an opponents charity? Not many.  At least the Vikes are honorable, which is more than I can say about many people.  I actually had some tell me today that they have a sliding scale of accountability and were proud of it.  Things to keep to yourself..  If you are in charge of anyone and have a sliding scale of accountability, you should probably quit your job.

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Unfortunately, the highlight of my day was the awesome chili I enjoyed at Culver’s between games.  When the chili was the highlight of the day, you know it was a bad sports day.  Additionally, I started reading Sun Tzu’s TheArt of War, which was quite enjoyable.   If you lead people, in any capacity or environment, you need to read this book on military strategy.  While this book was written with a military audience in mind, its principals are applicable across all industries and all leaders. In fact, I’m pretty sure its the first time in recorded history that a leader referred to a style akin to servant leadership.

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Ultimately, win, lose or draw, I love spending time with my family.  In that regard, today was a total win.  The Vikings’ season may be over, but I still have my Wild and soon the Twinkies will start spring training.  In short, soon the other sports teams from Minnesota can break my heart.   Lastly, if you’re looking for a good book to read on strategy, pick up a copy of Sun Tzu’s Art of War.

Tonight’s song performed by Minnesota’s own Soul Asylum is “Runaway Train.  I know, I know it is a bit melancholy, but after the drubbing my Vikes endured it seems apropos.  Of course, it also happens to be a great song and a great video.

Homeward Bound

After a wonderful weekend in Chicago, we’re homeward bound. We got a very early start to our day with a 5:00 wake up call. The Mayor’s game was out in West Dundee and after several inches of snow, we needed to leave even earlier. Consequently, we hit the road at 5:30 hoping that would provide adequate time to get there by 6:10.

Unfortunately, it did’t. Admittedly, I got spoiled when living in Minny as they truly do a great job clearing the roads quickly. Illinois could use a lesson or two from Minny on clearing the roads. While the storm had started in the early evening hours on Sunday nights, the interstate was still a mess when we hit the road this morning.

Not for nothing, winter driving is one of the biggest reasons I wanted to move out of Minny. I absolutely abhor driving in the snowy and icy conditions. Clearly, I don’t have the nerves nor the stomach for it. Nonetheless, I survived driving through the snow and ice.

Back to hockey, both boys were playing in the semis this morning. The Mayor’s team lost a heart breaker of a game, but they played with so much heart. Unfortunately, due to the timing of their games and the road conditions, I missed Goalielocks’ game.

I didn’t think in a million years I could have made it there for more than a period. However, the game was a complete train wreck with numerous stoppages. In fact, even though I would have made it to the rink an hour after it started, I still would have caught half a game. The crazy part is these games are only supposed to take an hour…. This one took considerably longer.

As much as I hate driving in the snow, it was absolutely beautiful this morning. After their games, the kids headed outside to play in the snow with their teammates. They had an absolute blast. Fortunately, the weather was absolutely perfect for playing outside with temperatures in the low to mid 20s.

Once they finished playing outside, we packed up the room so we could grab lunch with our friends. It was no surprise that Goalielocks wanted to head back to Giordano’s. In fact, I was totally on board too since eating the deep dish pizza would likely keep us full for the rest of the day.

While our teams didn’t make the finals and the hockey didn’t go as we hoped, I’m leaving Chicago with a heart full of love and gratitude. I’m extremely thankful to be able to share these experiences with the kids and with my dear friend Jen. Seeing Jen and her family absolutely made my weekend. There’s nothing better than a dear friend, who loves you no matter where you are in life. A friend that sticks by your side through thick and thin. Moreover, even though you may not talk everyday you know they’re in your corner. Love you to the moon and back my sister from another mister!!!!

We’re presently cruising around 36,000 feet heading south to Atlanta before heading to Florida. The Mayor is enjoying a movie, while Goalielocks has been watching highlights from yesterday’s Vikings game. There’s no studying happening, so hopefully that means they did their work already. Meanwhile, I’m here blogging away on my iPhone.

I’ll close out tonight’s blog with how much we enjoyed our time in Chicago. The people, the service, the food was all incredible. From the moment we got to the rental car counter at Hertz until we pushed back tonight, we were met with nothing but kindness from the people of Chicago. The only nasty people we came across were crazy hockey mom and grandmas from other states. We, of course, were on our best behavior. Seriously, Chicago and its people were amazing to us this weekend!

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Skol Vikings!!! Holy cannoli Batman that was a nail biter of a game between my Vikes and the Saints today. Jen and I were biting our nails as we followed the live updates on the Score. Unfortunately, there was a bit of a time delay on the app. So we were a bit behind.

Fortunately, text messages from my hubby, the family group text and Chuckles and Roman kept us updated timely. Honestly, when C&R texted holy cow, what a catch, touchdown, I thought they were messing with me. (It’s not hard to do.) I was in disbelief until my hubby and the family group text confirmed the good news.

Truly it was a game that entertained the masses while giving Minnesota fans a heart attack. I was commiserating the Vikings impending doom with my hubby via text and Jen as watched Goalielocks’ game. When she said, “maybe there’ll be a miracle.” I replied as any hardened Vikings fan would, “miracles don’t happen to us.” Only this time it did thanks to our Keenum led offense and Diggs’ amazing catch.

Aside from the Vike’s amazing win tonight, my boys had four games at two rinks across town. Consequently, I’m utterly exhausted and not looking forward to a 5:00 am wake up and an early morning drive through the snow. Goalielocks’ Team was 2-0 on the day, but I’ll write more about that in a forthcoming post on instant karma.

Meanwhile, the Mayor’s team went 1-1 on the day. The Mayor notched two goals today scoring one in each of the games. In fact, he scored the only goal for his team in the morning game. Both boys’ teams have moved onto the semis bright and early tomorrow. I’ll likely miss the start of Goalielocks’ game.

Lastly, the boys are really loving the Chicago area. Unfortunately, it looks like we won’t be able to make it downtown tomorrow due to games. However, today I introduced Goalielocks to deep dish pizza. After their morning game, we went with friends to Giordano’s. Goalielocks and I shared a pepperoni deep dish pizza that was to die for. In his words, “it was the best pizza he had ever eaten!” Moreover, he wants to go back for more tomorrow.

Of course, the plus side is the pizza really fills you up. You really don’t need to eat too much the rest of the day after having that. Even after we got back to the hotel after Goalielocks’s game, I was still full.

I should also mention that it has started to snow here in Chicago, which makes awesome driving – said nobody ever!!! My boys though are loving the weather. In contrast, I’m praying for an early end to the snow and for the roads to be clear tomorrow morning when we leave. I’m off to bed as we have a very early wake up call tomorrow morning.

We Made It

After two flights and a pit stop at MacDonald’s in Detroit, we finally made it to Chicago! This was my first time back in O’Hare since middle school. I remember the terminal walkways looked much bigger and much newer back then. Now it’s not so big and fancy compared to some of the newly remodeled airports.

Admittedly, I don’t eat MacDonald’s often. If I’m eating MacDonald’s, it’s either a desperation play or vodka made me do it. Today it was a desperation play as we didn’t have too much time between flights.

What a freaking mistake that was! I’m still feeling it! I ordered the artisan grilled chicken sandwich because calorie wise it was semi reasonable and it looked more gratifying than a single cheese burger. Wrong!

I was so hungry having totally forgotten to eat breakfast as we rushed to the airport. Despite this crazy level of hungry bordering on hangry, I couldn’t finish the sandwich. It was truly the one of the most vile things I have ever eaten.

Honestly, I would have been better off eating the soles of my shoes because they would have been less rubbery. As a matter of fact, I’m pretty sure they stole the rubber chicken from Carrot Top’s prop box and made into my sandwich. If I were him, I’d be mad that his prop was sacrificed for a subpar imitation chicken sandwich.

Now here we are in the Marriott seven hours later and my stomach is still angry with that sandwich. This is why I’m not going to be eating at Macdonald’s again sober. My sandwich today evoked memories of the horrific school lunches they served in elementary.

Meanwhile, my boys feel that the current Chicago weather is nice and comfortable. It’s been a battle since we landed to get them to put on jackets, pants, gloves, etc. “It’s not cold mom.” Yeah, my arse it isn’t cold. I’m looking forward to rehashing this argument tomorrow as we leave for the rink bright and early.

Tomorrow will be a busy day with three games and two team functions. Fortunately, the games are all at the same arena tomorrow. Sunday on the other hand will be a complete disaster. It should be an interesting day as I attempt to make all games in different arenas across town! I’m heading to bed hoping that the nausea caused by that blasted rubber chicken sandwich will be gone tomorrow. Over and out from Chicago!

I Did It!

I Did It!

I did it!  I actually made it to a 5:30 am class this morning at Burn.  This morning’s class was circuit burn led by Duane as Amanda was off today.  Once the class started, I felt pretty good, but it was a hard start for me.  Unfortunately, I still need to modify things for the tendonitis, so I lost some of the workout’s voracity today.  I have to say that’s the most frustrating thing in all of this.  Not only can I not run, but I can’t give my other classes 100%.  Now I know what you’re thinking, and you’re right, it’s a short-term struggle to preserve the long-term.

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Afterwards I felt alive, accomplished and away, which is highly unusual for me at the 6:00 hour.  It was less of a struggle to get the kids out the door and I didn’t need my coffee to feel awake. Well, at least in the morning.  The need for my afternoon coffee came a little bit earlier than usual, but that’s to be expected.  I’m sure I’ll pass out early tonight with such an early wake up call this morning.  Nevertheless, this is definitely a habit I am going to keep.

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Consequently, I did notice that Barre was a bit harder or me tonight after having done a circuit class this morning.  I’m not sure if that’s because I’m mentally tired or because my body had enough at that point.  Clearly, it’s a tbd.  Once I figure it out, you can bet I’ll let you know.  Additionally, much like in the morning class,  I was getting frustrated with my limitations.  I need to get over it quickly as getting my tendons healthy and fully functional is my absolute priority.

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I’m going to try and make to spin tomorrow morning at 5:30 as it would be the perfect way to start my day.   I am logging as many workouts as I can before we leave for the hockey tournament. Unfortunately,  I don’t think it will be feasible to workout given the boys’ schedules although I would love to do so.  I guess I can make my doctor happy by finally giving it a rest. After all, in a couple of weeks I will get back to undulating in my Zumba class four times a week!

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Nonetheless, today was a victory for my 2018 intentions and resolutions.  2018 is all about discipline and living in gratitude.  Speaking of which, I’m super excited about being a buddy at the Night To Shine even sponsored by the Tim Tebow foundation.  This event is all about giving special needs teens and young adults a chance to enjoy their prom.  Additionally, as a buddy we get to serve as a chaperone for the night ensuring they have the time of their life.  What could be better than that?  As an added bonus, we get to dress up for prom.  It’s only been a couple of years (or decades) since I graduated, so it will be fun.

Tonight’s song, in honor of my forthcoming return to Zumba, performed by Celia Cruz is “La Vida Es Un Carnaval.”  Celia Cruz is one of my favorite salsa singers.   She is an absolute music legend.   I hope you enjoy her music as much I as do.

 

Back To School

Last week it was back to reality for us adults, but this week it is back to school for the kids in Palm Beach County.  It feels like they’ve been off from school forever even though its only been a couple of weeks.  With the kids heading back to school, life will truly feel like its back to normal.  Well, back to normal or a couple of days until we head to Chicago for a tournament.

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As a kid, the harbinger that school was near was always the Minnesota State Fair.  If you’re looking for great fried food on a stick of all varieties, this is the place for you.  One of our last trips to the fair, we enjoyed a fried candy bar on a stick.  Albeit it may have had at least a million calories, it was worth every one of them.  Other great eats include the Sweet Martha’s Cookies, cheese curds, funnel cake and Fresh French Fries.  They too are worth every calories.

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In contrast, for our kids, a return to the rink is the forerunner to school’s imminent return.  In fact, it serves as the signal both in August and in January.  Nonetheless, it doesn’t make it easier for the kids to get back into their school routines.  Who wants to get up early and go to bed earlier? None of the children in my house that’s who.

Speaking of hockey, the Mayor and Hubby headed over to Estero (west coast) for two games today.  Since we all went yesterday, I stayed home to finish the grocery shopping and wrap up preparations for our forthcoming Chicago trip.  Over the years, we’ve amassed quite of bit of winter wear, however, these pesky kids keep growing.  Now I’m trying to figure out what I need to buy for each.  Thankfully, Amazon Prime will have them here by Wednesday!

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I cannot wait to go to Chicago!  We used to go there several times a year when we were still living in Minneapolis.  The Hubby’s grandfather used to live in Oaklawn while my Aunt and Uncle lived in Northbrook.  Moreover, my bestie from high school now lives in suburban Chicago, which means I get to see her and her family this weekend.  Did I mention I can’t wait?

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As for the Mayor’s games today…  Unfortunately, the highlight of their day was lunch at Twin Peaks which says it all.   There’s no doubt my Mayor had to be tired as he had a pretty quick turn around from our Orlando trip.  While we got home at 10:45 pm last night, he had to leave again for the west coast at 6:45 am.  You’ll be shocked to know he fell asleep on the couch a good fifty minutes ago.

Tonight’s song performed by Dropkick Murphy’s is one of the Mayor’s favorite hockey songs.  The song of the evening is “I’m Shipping Up To Boston.”