Watch US v. Japan in the Final Battle for the FIFA 2015 Women's World Cup This Weekend

After weeks of tournament play and a dramatic week of semi-final games, the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup is culminating in two fantastic, final games on Saturday and Sunday. ...more

3 Things My Family Learned from Watching the Women's World Cup Live

The scale of the stadium and the crowds of people decked out in the colors of their countries and the music pulsing and the Fanzone filled with face painting and bubble soccer and the smell of hot dogs and mini donuts and the shouts and applause as the players impress with their athleticism—this is the Women’s World Cup. Last Friday, my family went to Winnipeg for the Women's World Cup with our daughter's soccer team and their families. We saw five World Cup games and watched our girls play four games in a tournament hosted by the Winnipeg South End United Soccer Club. ...more

Women's World Cup 2015 Fever Is Off to a Wild Start

The 2015 Women's World Cup is off to a strong start, and I'm already obsessed.  The U.S. Women's National Team has a great shot at bringing the Cup home from Canada, which would be our first win since 1999.  All fans are facing a month of exciting competition, with the Third-Place Match scheduled for July 4. The final game on July 5 in Vancouver will award the World Cup trophy, and we have hours of games this month to take us along on the journey. ...more

Watch US v. Japan in the Final Battle for the FIFA 2015 Women's World Cup This Weekend

After weeks of tournament play and a dramatic week of semi-final games, the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup is culminating in two fantastic, final games on Saturday and Sunday. ...more

Fried Oreos, Funnel Cake and FIFA

 Funnel Cakes, Fried Oreos and FIFA: Hello Summer… ...more

The unexpected payback from expensive travel sports

Have you heard the Trace Adkin’s song ‘Just Fishin’?  Here’s one verse and the chorus:I say, “Daddy loves you, baby” one more time She says, “I know. I think I got a bite.” And all this laughin’, cryin, smilin’ dyin’ here inside’s What I call, livin’ And she thinks we’re just fishin’ on the riverside Throwin’ back what we could fry Drownin’ worms and killin’ time Nothin’ too ambitious She ain’t even thinkin’ ‘bout What’s really goin’ on right now But I guarantee this memory’s a big’in And she thinks we’re just fishin’I love the story this song tells the listener.  It’s about a dad spending quality time with his daughter.  She’s excited to go fishing but he is older and wiser and knows this experience is so much more than fishing.  The video is really sweet.Both of my teenagers are in travel sports.  My 13 year old son plays travel baseball and my daughter plays for a sand volleyball club.  With my husband and I both working full time and the extra family responsibilities I have with my mom, life is B U S Y.  I have to confess that I miss weekends at home just hanging out.  When Monday quickly surfaces, it’s tough to face a new work week after spending a weekend away.  We sacrifice the productivity of getting stuff done around the house and we feel like we had too little rest and relaxation.  Travel sports are also expensive!  I think we probably bought a small car this year between our two kids and their sporting equipment, club fees, and travel expenses.  But rather than go on and on about the negative stuff, I wanted to share a huge positive revelation I had this past weekend about travel sports.Both of my teenagers are in travel sports.  My 13 year old son plays travel baseball and my daughter plays for a sand volleyball club.  With my husband and I both working full time and the extra family responsibilities I have with my mom, life is B U S Y.  I have to confess that I miss weekends at home just hanging out.  When Monday quickly surfaces, it’s tough to face a new work week after spending a weekend away from getting stuff done around the house and feeling like you had a little rest and relaxation.  Travel sports are also expensive!  I think we probably bought a small car this year between our two kids and their sporting equipment, club fees, and travel expenses.  But rather than go on and on about the negative stuff, I wanted to share a huge positive revelation I had this past weekend about travel sports.This past normal non-3 day weekend my 15 year old daughter and I spent almost 14 hours in the car roundtrip driving from Georgia to North Carolina!  We left on a Friday afternoon, checked into our sleazy Quality Inn motel, dined at a local seafood restaurant and quickly scurried into a Trader Joe’s 10 minutes before closing to do a supermarket sweep of healthy snacks. On Saturday, we rose at the crack of dawn where I took great pleasure in watching Natalie work the best perk of our motel – the do-it-yourself Belgium waffle maker.  Natalie played volleyball in the 90 degree heat while I spectated and reminded her to stay hydrated and reapply sunscreen.  She and her tournament partner played well together and we made plans with her partner and her mom to see the ocean since we were so close to it. We went to the beach for a bit and enjoyed the late afternoon sun.  The girls took a quick nap while partner mom and I strolled and chatted.  After, we snapped lots of pictures of the sunset.  We swapped stories about school and travel over a well-deserved seafood dinner and then crashed back in our motel room.  We rose early Sunday, fueled up our bodies and the car, and drove the seven hours back to Georgia.  It was a whirlwind weekend.I do some of my best thinking and reflecting in the car.  While I was driving back home, I experienced an overwhelming sense of gratitude for this special one-on-one time with my daughter.  During this brief weekend we shared 6 meals together – five of them with just the two of us.  We covered all kinds of topics from her Driver’s Ed class that week, to her friends, to gift ideas for Father’s Day, to volleyball, things we wanted to do and see this summer, and so much more.  In the car, we fought over whose playlist to listen to, caught up with some relatives over the phone, and I got some lecturing on my lack of blinker use and some education on what the signs were officially called.While Natalie and I were traveling over the weekend, my son and husband were having some bonding time at home.  Jacob helped his dad pick out a new lawn mower and learned how to mow the lawn to earn some extra cash.  They also went to dinner and a movie and went tubing with some neighbors and shared several bachelor style meals together.  Jacob didn’t have a tournament this past weekend but there have been many weekends where Jason and Jacob have their concentrated drive and 1-on-1 time together over a busy tournament weekend.I realize these parenting moments are fleeting.  My kids are growing up fast…too fast.  When they were little, I use to tell them that they were ‘frozen’ and couldn’t age any more.  Once I asked my daughter when she was a toddler why she couldn’t wait until she was five years old.  She said she needed to be five so that she could ‘chew gum’.  Each age has offered its own unique set of parenting experiences and memories.  Very soon, my kids will be driving themselves to practices.  Travel sports will end and my kids will enter the next phase of their lives…a more independent phase where I’m wishing they would hang with me all weekend.So for now, Natalie thinks we were just fishin’ traveling for volleyball.  But I know we were making memories…ones I will always cherish....more

3 Things My Family Learned from Watching the Women's World Cup Live

The scale of the stadium and the crowds of people decked out in the colors of their countries and the music pulsing and the Fanzone filled with face painting and bubble soccer and the smell of hot dogs and mini donuts and the shouts and applause as the players impress with their athleticism—this is the Women’s World Cup. Last Friday, my family went to Winnipeg for the Women's World Cup with our daughter's soccer team and their families. We saw five World Cup games and watched our girls play four games in a tournament hosted by the Winnipeg South End United Soccer Club. ...more

On Baseball & Friendship

Stealing Away Back in April, my friend and I stole a night right off the calendar, shoving it into diaper bags before anyone could raise the alarm. As I imagine thieves would do, we marveled that we had gotten away with it. ...more

An (Unintentional) Taste for Irony…

1, 241 days. Otherwise known as 3 years, 4 months and 22 days.Or, how long it has been since I started this blogging adventure....more

Women's World Cup 2015 Fever Is Off to a Wild Start

The 2015 Women's World Cup is off to a strong start, and I'm already obsessed.  The U.S. Women's National Team has a great shot at bringing the Cup home from Canada, which would be our first win since 1999.  All fans are facing a month of exciting competition, with the Third-Place Match scheduled for July 4. The final game on July 5 in Vancouver will award the World Cup trophy, and we have hours of games this month to take us along on the journey. ...more

What is your NBA playoff motto…I am "All In!"

I'm All In... NBA Every season each team in the NBA comes up with their own motto for the playoffs. They usually make a video and set it to some music. The purpose: to pump up the fans of course. Now social media has taken it to another level; these are the new hashtags to unite the fan base. One of the most famous past Cleveland Cavaliers' mottos was Witness back before LeBron left. This year the Cavaliers' motto is "All In" with the hashtags AllIn and AllinCle.  ...more

The Decline of Baseball - And Why It Matters

Years ago I read the book A Reasonable Life: Toward a Simpler, Secure, More Sane Existence by Ference Matte.  In this book, Matte laments the loss of simple pleasures, among them baseball.  He compares the joys of a Sunday afternoon pick-up game to the intense, high stakes sport that kids play today....more