Monday, August 25, 2008
Monday, August 18, 2008
Training started in August. Courtney's team was coached by Elena Veach, an high school English teacher and assistant coach of a very successful high school team. The girls on that team came from a wide range of soccer backgrounds - some had played since they were four years old; others were only at the beginning of their careers. What they lacked in skill and experience, they made up for in sweetness and fun. Emma, Lilly, Anna,Sarah, Mia, Hannah, Alex, Zoe, Willa, Asia, Olivia. And their parents - the fruit did not fall far from the tree - in a totally good way. The parents were so nice. Sometimes, people from Bloomingon make a big deal about people from Bedford - in a totally bad way.
The fall season for Elena's team was kind of ugly, but she was committed to getting them better, to making them a team and to getting the best out of everyone. She coached them like she meant it. No matter how bad they got slaughtered on Saturday, she worked them out like champs on Monday. Elena never lowered her expectations.
The spring season came, and the team started training and playing matches again. But this season was different. Elena's team was winning. Elena got it out of them. The team she created transcended their own limitations.
Elena Veach reinvented Courtney Crane. Elena made Coutney believe in herself. She instilled a will and desire to find the net into the little girl with braids. Tonight, Courtney Crane played her first high school varsity soccer match. Thank you, Elena.
Elena Veach died Saturday. I don't think she was thirty years old. She leaves behind a husband, a toddler and a newborn son.
Friday, August 08, 2008
Today is really the last day of summer vacation for me. I don't count Saturday and Sunday because we get those days off year round. This has to be one of the biggest perks of my job - 11 weeks off! The other big one - to me, anyway - is that we have clear, concrete beginnings and ends; built-in times to reflect, evaluate and set goals. I woke up today thinking about whether or not I had spent my summer wisely, whether or not I had accomplished anything.
I am not sure I got enough done. I am not sure I should worry about what I got done. When I go back on Monday, everybody will say, "Did you have a good summer?" and I will say yes and ask the same. I cleaned out my closet and got rid of a ton, so did the girls. I went to Arrowmont. Whitley did driver's ed. We got a new heating and cooling thing. I saw a proof of The Book. I wrote an article for Cloth Paper Scissors. I taught at Hummingbird Art Camp. The girls trained and went to a couple of camps. Whitley turned 16 and we enrolled both girls in high school. That's about it.
Sunday, August 03, 2008
It's my first foray into fondant. This is the second soccer ball cake I've made. I did one when Whit was 10, I think. Those hexagons! Yesterday when I was working on the ball was the only time I ever wished basketball was her #1 sport! Courtney wants either a running-themed cake or a guitar cake. Not for a few months, though.
Tomorrow is the first IHSAA official practice for cross country and soccer. Whit is playing soccer again. She is the returning varsity player with the most experience, so she should have a big year. Court is playing soccer and running cross country. There doesn't look to be too many conflicts. Both will be in high school!
I go back on the 11th; kids on the 12th. I think it's going to be a great year for all of us.