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Happy Sunday!!

Yes, all of us are still alive. It is just that season – the one where we have some school-related event to attend every single weekend. With both kids running cross-country, it means even more of our Saturdays are spent at the various races, as the middle school races are usually not until the very end. Plus, we have marching band competitions, and none of those are in nearby locations. So, we have spent these last few weeks out of the house, going all across southern Wisconsin to watch the kids at their various activities. We have about three more weeks of this insanity too before we settle down into only dance on the weekends. I speak for everyone when I say I think we are all ready for that relative calm.

The kids are already preparing for the end of cross-country as well by prepping for their next after-school activities. Connor is already hard at work writing his pieces for Forensics this year; he wants to compete in two different categories this year, hence the early prep work. Holly is trying her hand at the school newspaper, having submitting an application and been accepted on the staff. Of course, the kids also head into concert band mode as well once marching band is over, so learning new pieces and perfecting them will also keep them busy.

Cross-country is going okay. Connor cannot seem to get out of his head, and his performance shows. At this point in time, he is putting so much pressure on himself that he is guaranteeing himself a poor run. He is two minutes off of his PR this year and has been right on the Varsity/JV bubble for the past few meets. He is frustrated and angry and anxious that he will not letter his senior year, even though he has lettered in this sport the previous three years. It is equally frustrating for Jim and me to watch him self-destruct this way, knowing that this is something he is going to have to figure out on his own. All we are doing is supporting him and reminding him to relax and have fun. It is all we can do.

Holly is enjoying cross-country a lot. She is not the fastest runner at all, but she is dedicated and puts in the effort. She has been improving every time she competes, and while she will never win a race, I am proud of her. It is so much fun seeing her out of the dance environment, where she sometimes feels ignored and the group dynamic is so competitive. With cross-country, she is vibrant and outgoing, much more of her true self than what I see in the studio most of the time. Both Jim and I are so happy to see her branch out towards other interests. While dance may still be her number one passion, she is learning that there is so much more to life than dance, and that is exactly what we hoped she would learn as she entered middle school.

Speaking of dance, we are fortunate to only have the weekly classes going on right now. We did have the first competition team meeting, where the girls received the list of dances in which they will be competing this year. Holly will only be in two dances this year. She is disappointed. She has been putting in a lot of time and effort to improve and was hoping to see the fruits of that effort in the form of more dances. However, she is not backing down and already has a game plan for improving even more for next year. The girl is nothing if not dedicated! We start practices for these dances next week, and so far, the practices will fit into the other events on the calendar for October. The first competition is not until March, so there will be a lot of time at the studio between now and then!

Last night was Connor’s last homecoming. He kept it extremely low-key this year; his date was just a friend from band. His group did not even stay at the dance that long. They all ended up coming over to our house to play games and watch movies. We even had a few of the kids stay the night. Of course, because our son hates the camera, we got no pictures but were promised some from one of the girls in his party. I’m sure they will be wonderful when we see them.

Speaking of pictures, Connor has his senior pictures on Friday. I am really hoping to capture the colors of the season in them. The photographer we have is one who seriously does not take a bad picture. I cannot wait to see what she does with Connor!

We also are hosting the cross-country spaghetti dinner on Friday evening. Spaghetti and meatballs for 50 kids. Unfortunately, due to timing, it is also the last day of month-end close. AND they have a cross-country meet on Thursday evening. Jim is taking off on Friday, and the kids have off of school that day so the brunt of the work is going to fall on them. See what I mean about surviving?

Here are past posts from the last few weeks in case you missed them the first time:

Now, it is off to another marching band competition on the other side of the state. Hopefully, the rain holds off so there are no delays, and we can all get home at a decent hour tonight – like before sundown. I hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend. I’ll see you back here next week, hopefully!

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