Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Heisman Hale!

Today Ashleigh got word that she was a School Winner and a State Finalist in the Wendy's High School Heisman Award program!  She was the only one from her high school and got a certificate, bronze medal and $25 gift card for Wendy's.  Here is a description of the program:

The WHSH program has set the standard for high school student-athletes, and gained tremendous prestige in its own right as the program combines the best of high school athlete and academic awards. Each fall, the WHSH recognizes the nation’s most esteemed high school senior men and women for excellence in academics, athletics, and community/school leadership. Students from across the country become involved in the WHSH program because these prestigious student recognition awards highlight their accomplishments and the winning students are showcased on a national level.


Saturday, November 20, 2010


Tuesday morning Ashleigh went out to her car to find the passenger rear tire was flat.  Lucie drove Ashleigh and Elliott to school while I took the tire off.  Of course nothing has changed in all my years of car jacking so as soon as I got the tire off, the car starts to roll down the driveway (yes it was in Park) and the floor jack (with wheels) tips over.  No biggie - the car fell on the frame so there was no damage.  Not sure how it rolled in the first place.  That set off the motion detector car alarm so there I stand at 7:15 in the morning with an alarm sounding and car sitting on the frame.  Ashleigh had the car keys with her so I had to wait for the alarm to time out.  I was pretty popular in the neighborhood that morning...  Anyway, I ran the tire over to Wal-Mart and about an hour later they yanked the nail out that you see above.   Took the tire home and slapped it on and all was good.

Sometimes at night to keep the dogs occupied I take a rawhide bone and cut about a third off.  Mocha gets two thirds, Britni gets one third.  (By the way, last week was Mocha's one year old check up at the vet - 116 pounds!)  Usually it times out right that they both finish their pieces at the same time.  The other night Mocha got distracted and walked away from her piece.  So Britni snatched it and had both pieces.  Well that led to a big fight of snarling and growling.  Mocha could kill Britni if she wanted to but nevertheless I don't want one or both to get hurt.  Elliott was walking by the fracas so he reached in to grab Mocha's piece and mis-timed it and got chomped by Britni.  Not intentional but it punctured him pretty good.  We wrapped it and soaked it in peroxide for a while.  But because it was a dog bite, and because of some strong urging from a friend with a medical background, Lucie took Elliott to the doctor the next day.  It didn't get infected but the doc put him on antibiotics just in case.  Meanwhile, I asked our oral surgeon friend which was worse - a dog bite or a human bite.  Human bite by far...

I am working on Monday and then am off all next week.  No big plans.  The kids are out of school but Lucie is working.  Her birthday is on Thanksgiving and we are fortunate to have been asked to a friend's house for Thanksgiving.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Ashleigh's Field Hockey Award

Last night was Ashleigh's field hockey banquet.  Last one.  Seemed like just the other day we were standing in Dick's trying to figure what field hockey stick to buy because she had never played before and we had no clue.  Now she just finished her senior year as a varsity starter.

The banquet was at the Newark Country Club.  Nice place and the program was good (but a little long with all of the awards and gifts and words of appreciation and thanks).

Ashleigh didn't win MVP, or Most Improved, or Best Offensive Player (she did get a certificate as an All State Scholar Athlete for her 4.0 GPA though!).  But she did get recognized for what I consider the most important "award" of the night.  Towards the end of the evening, a group of freshman players got up to say some words.  (Earlier, during the freshman awards, one freshman girl was named "Most Like Ashleigh Hale!"). Each one of the girls singled out Ashleigh as the most approachable and friendly senior who not only encouraged them on the field, but was not ashamed to publicly greet them in the halls of the school.  They were amazed that a varsity senior player would spend time with them and genuinely care about them.  So while Ashleigh didn't get a plaque with her name engraved on it or another paper certificate, she made a positive difference in someones life - and that is the most important accomplishment anyone can do.  I am proud of her.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

What's A Camel Got To Do With It?

I had some notes with lots of little comments to blog about but couldn't find a good theme to start with.  So what better place to start than with a picture of Lucie and I and a camel?!  ING DIRECT had it's 10 year anniversary party at a big convention center in Wilmington last week.  We hired in a lot of security so I didn't have to work that night (lots of work prepping before though!).  The Delaware Symphony Orchestra played background to a Cirque de Soleil type of performing group and the the theme of the night was a 1001 Arabian Nights.  Lots of good food and a good show.  And camels of course.  And just so you can never say my blogs aren't educational, camels live to be about 50 years old.

So we had a good night that night and then I was able to obtain some $500 tickets for the public show two nights later (for FREE!).  We went back and took Elliott (Ashleigh's boyfriend had bought her tickets to a concert in Philadelphia).  Same show but a much fancier night.  Timing was everything as we got there just ahead of the CEO so I was able to shake his hand and the #2 in the company too (they went back too as ING sponsored the event).  And the family urologist was there so we talked to him too.  (Lucie was reluctant to at first but I explained that there really was no one there who knew me better than him...!).  I am sure there were people wondering who we were that could afford expensive tickets just as we wondered the same about them.

"Family urologist?" you ask.  Yes - oddly enough, they found a kidney stone in Lucie while doing other tests.  So this morning I took her in to get that blasted.  Pretty strange that we both have them but we really don't eat everything in common.  It just so happens.  She is doing fine - coming out from and recovering from the anesthesia is the hardest part.

Ashleigh's birthday party was fun and low key.  She had some friends over for cake and food and s'mores by the firepit.  Earlier that day we went to the Stevenson University Open House.  She wants to go there for college next year to get her nursing anesthetist degree.  Its about an hour away.  Beautiful rural campus but very near civilization too.  It is one of the top rated nursing schools and was clean and modern and well maintained.  After sitting through the financial session, I think we can scrounge up enough money to send for a full 3 days;  maybe an entire week!

Ashleigh played her last field hockey game this week.  We have a serious issue with her coach that I will be resolving very soon.

It is chilly out now and we have to scrape the windshields in the morning.  Lucie mentioned the other day that she may start parking outside so Ashleigh can park in the garage.  I pulled rank and said if she decides she is parking outside, then I am parking in the garage.  It's privilege enough to have her own car to drive to school, we don't have to warm it up for her too!  Why when I was her age, I had to get up an hour early to shovel a path to my car...