Thursday, June 24, 2010


I'M OUT!!!!!!!!!!! HAVE A FANTASTIC 2 1/2 WEEKS EVERYONE!!!! I'll be back and settled by July 13th and READY TO SHARE SOME STORIES!!!!!!!!!!!!

My short version of an itinerary!!!!!:

Finland: June 25 - July 4  (Paavo Nurmi Marathon July 3rd!!!!!)
Sweden: July 4 - July 10
London: July 10 - July 11
MUSSOORIE: JULY 12th early morning (7am)!!!!!!


Saturday, June 19, 2010

ON YOUR MARKS........GET SET..........GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The start of the 34th Grandma's Marathon has begun!!!!!!!!!! And I'm half way across the world for it.  I never really had a chance to really sit down and kinda reflect on this entire year!!! I'll be arriving home from Sweden when it's officially 1 year and probably won't have that much energy to write something!!! Today was a perfect day for just that!! After killing myself yesterday to the physical max (6th consecutive day), definitely needed a downer day before running my final long run tomorrow (13 miles) and taking it easy with medium sized runs until July 3rd!!! I think for this post gonna keep it debby downer!!:) Things I've missed this past year, compared to other training years and how good it's going to feel hugging my mom, dad and sister for the first time in a year and a half!!!! I was watching Saving Private Ryan tonight and there was a particular scene I could REALLY relate too!! It was one of the soldiers talking about his experiences as a kid and how his mom always worked late and slept through the day!! How sometimes his mom would get off early and come home and watch him sleep, however, he wouldn't be sleeping just keep his eyes closed like he was sleeping!! Then he goes on explaining how he didn't know why he never opened his eyes, cause all his mom wanted to do was talk and see how his day went!! But he never opened them and continued to sleep!! I think as kids all of us do that, I know I did when I would pretend to still be taking a nap after a long day and not want to talk to anyone.  I also don't know why I did that, maybe it was just the actions of a stupid teenager!! Well I look back at those moments and regret keeping my eyes closed for both my mom and dad, sister no so much, and how I wish I would have opened them to talk!! Cause now I'm half way across the world and don't even get to physically talk to them for another 6 months!! Now to relate all of this to training and how this year has been different to past years!! During every training season I would always do some mini races (5/10k's) and of course my dad, mom, sister, and Cindy would all be there with cameras and cheering voices of support!! For the marathons, my mom would always have the bananas, strawberries, oranges or mini snicker bars, while my dad would be Mr. Road Map and make sure they hit ALL 5 points along the marathon route, while taking a MASSIVE amount of pictures!! Then there would be Dan (best friend) who would yell things of "YOU SUCK!!" , "Hey you're behind like 500 runners, pick it up!!", "I hate you, you'll never win this race!!"!! So Nicole, now do you see where I get my words of encouragement from!!!:) But you know what those "negative/hilarious" comments made me loosen up inside and probably were the best comments anyone could yell!! And of course my sister would have some kind of shirt with words of support on it, or a sign, or flat out just being there cheering her big brother on!!! All of these small little moments in life, are now HUGE moments I'm going to miss come 2 weeks at the Paavo Nurmi Marathon!! No food from mom, course mapping and checkpoints to look for the family compliments of my dad, no helpful words of discouragement from Dan, no encouragement from my sister!! This is where the one negative of being a teacher comes in, the money!! In a heartbeat I would fly all of my family and Dan over to Finland so I could be with them and run this race together!! Cause I would be no where without all of them there throughout my life supporting me as a I run!! They are my support crew, my family, and my concrete foundation!!  This race IS for you guys!! Without you I wouldn't be where I am today!!! This is my 6th marathon, but really its my first all over again!! Have a great weekend all and Minnesota..........see you in 6 months from today!!!!:) Happy Smiling!!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

It's finally sinking in.

With school coming to an end OFFICIALLY AT 3PM TOMORROW (FRIDAY) AFTERNOON!!! What would be a normal routine on Monday is non-existent this year!! I think not being in Shakopee for the summer for the first time in 18 years is finally sinking in.  I mean my "Monday: First Day of Summer Tennis Routine" has been solid the past 9 years as a coach. Here's what a normal "Monday: First Day of Summer Tennis Routine" would be:

Monday June 14th, 2010
  • Wake up around 5am
  • Boil eggs and put in refrigerator
  • Go for a light run (6-7 miles)
  • Come back home around 6am and eat boiled eggs
  • Hop on bike and bike over to Community Center
  • Hit the weights from 7-8am
  • 8-9am teach 3-4th graders tennis
  • 9-9:45am teach little hitters (yes the most adorable group EVER)
  • 9:45-10am have a light snack while watching Dan swing on the swing set!!
  • 10-11am teach 5-6th graders tennis
  • 11-12pm teach 7-12th graders tennis
  • 12-12:30pm HAVE LUNCH AND REFLECT ON HOW AWESOME SUMMER TENNIS IS!! Maybe throw some Office/Saved By the Bell quotes in there!! Then torment Jenny and poke the crap out of her!! Then make fun of Amy while she's sleeping for the 14th nap of the day and the day's not even half way over!! Have a little tickle fight, with Matt getting the worst of it!! Then of course making fun of Kayla and all of her pink girly accessories!! Yes, this is all in 30 minutes!!
  • 12:30-2pm teach 12U and 14U Team Tennis!!!
  • 2-3:30pm teach 18U Team Tennis!!!
  • 3:30-4pm MUCH NEEDED BREAK before 1 1/2 hours of LITTLE HITTERS!! Yes this break was CRUCIAL!! Definitely nap time for most of us, or green Aloe for those who forgot sun tan on the first day of tennis and by now is burnt to a crisp!!!:)
  • 4-5:30 teach another session of Little Hitters!!
  • 5:30-6:30pm BREAK before Adults come!! All 3 of them usually!!! And this break would definitely be NAP and quick dinner!!
  • 6:30-8pm ADULT tennis!!!
  • 8-9:30pm basically become a zombie of exhaustion but have the feelings of HOLY CRAP THIS IS THE BEST SUMMER JOB EVER!!!!!!!!:) While working on a crap load of Shakopee Tennis paperwork/online webwork/administration work!! Something Jenny SHOULD be doing but is not for Dave!!!;)
  • 10pm if lucky BEDTIME!!!! Cause 5am is coming and that means another GREAT day!!!!:)

Well Shakopee Summer Tennis this Monday you officially begin your journey without me...... hold on getting a little emotional (no sarcasm).  For 18 years, not only have you been a second family for me in the summer time, but a place that I will ALWAYS call home, no matter how old I am or how hairy my face is!! I would not be the type of person I am today without all of you and the wonderful, fun, amazing, spectacular, outstanding, fantastic, heartwarming, caring, and PERFECT times we had!! I think back to our South Dakota trips (3), Detroit trip, Wisconsin trip, Duluth trip, South Dakota trips (1 more time) and can NOT think of a more perfect place to be in the summer time!! With friends that I love and a game I treasure!!!  I think of all the friendships and faces that came and gone throughout the years I was with Shakopee (was with Shakopee, never thought I would ever be saying those words) and how close we got at some points!! All of the memories with those friendships: the annual coaches mac and cheese parties, Shakopee Inner House Tournament at the end of every summer, the parade that we dominated for years straight with best float, registration at the old log cabin, convincing Shakopee youth that tennis is the BEST sport ever at the annual Shakopee Showcase (where Tom "Bring Home the Bacon" Stenson stole me away from baseball 18 years ago and I never looked back!!:)), the special events at the Lynx game, downtown Minneapolis for Serve and Volley, TWINS GAME, trip to a certain cabin, shed sleepovers, late night movies, etc.!! For those that actually remember those they were the best!!!:) One day I will never forget out of those 18 years is July 13th, 2009........ my very last day to step on that court and teach the crap out of tennis.  Not to mention the most memorable "farewell" party any human being could ask for.......... hold on again.  You will always have a part of my heart Shakopee tennis, in fact the biggest part of my heart!!!! I hope nothing but the absolute BEST for Shakopee Tennis and I know it will only grow stronger and stronger during my minor leave of absence!! You have been left in amazing hands of the coaches and Dave-O and I have no doubt in my mind students will be enthused if not more enthused every day to come to play and learn for Shakopee Summer Tennis!!! I love all of you, and you have no idea how much I miss not being there!!!  HAVE A FANTASTICO SUMMER (ESPECIALLY ON THOSE WACKY WEDNESDAYS)!!! MISS YOU GUYS!!!! AND MOST IMPORTANTLY HAVE SOME FREAKIN FUN!!!!!!!!!!!!:)

My only words left are............ Summer 2012!!!!!:)

Have a ROCKIN' summer Shakopee Tennis and THANKS for the memories!!!!!:)

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

What it takes!!!

So sorry about this ahead of time but tonight's post is a little more semi-serious than watermelons or poop!! It's when a dear friend of mine, who shall remain nameless but I'm pretty sure will know who they are once/if they read this, asked me do you find it is harder for you to be empathetic with out of shape people, mainly because you do not realize how good of shape you are in??  And at first I kinda laughed with my very LARGE history and was kinda puzzled how could they ask this because they know I was bigger as a kid!! But then I began to think about it and thought this was actually a decent question!! I have been on this exercise drive now for 6-7 years and some parts of me are starting to forget what it's like to be "out of shape"!! NOT in any means am I saying that I'm the "perfect" specimen or anything, just not out of shape anymore!! Then I answered a little!! And the little part of me that has no empathy for out of shape people mostly comes from the freakin hardwork and dedication it takes to go from out of shape to in shape!!  This is definitely the ONLY downside of being a PE teacher, and that is seeing lazyness from students day in and day out!! And this goes for ANY teacher!! Be lazyness studying for a test, or not finishing homework!! It's just not PE that teachers get frustrated with lazyness!!  I guess for me lazyness has to be earned!! What did you do that day for you to be lazy?? Now for some people it may be walking up and down from school is there exercise!! For others it may be running 10 miles and hitting the weights hard for an hour!! Either way I see lazyness as a deserved gift/for a job well done that day!!  Also, I take the blessed side as well!!  When I see people taking a cab for a job that can easily be done by foot, or ordering groceries to be delivered that you can walk and carry with your feet and hands makes me sad!!  There is one class that will ALWAYS inspire me and make me think about life in a whole new perspective!! And that's when I had a semester of Adapted PE!! You want brave, you want inspiration!! One semester with those awesome students will give you that and SO much more!! Do you know what those kids would give to be able to walk, or throw/catch a ball!! They will be in wheelchairs their entire LIFE!! Oh let's take a cab tonight, I'm too tired to walk!! It's called suck it up!! You NEED to live each day as it is your last!! Cause you have no idea what will happen the next, or the next, or the next!! One day you're walking, the next BAM, in a wheelchair the rest of your life!! Now what would you give to walk one more step again!!  So now you know what I think about when I'm debating if I should work out today or not, I think back to those kids who would LOVE to do one push-up with 2 good arms, or run 10 feet with 2 good legs!!  You also need heart to do it day in and day out!! If you're doing it just cause you like some boy or girl and they work out, or cause you're friends are doing it, quit wasting the weight machines or treadmills time!! DO IT FOR YOU AND ONLY YOU!!! Internal motivation needs to be strong in EVERY single person!! External can only take you so far, after they all have left and it's just you, then what!?!?  Find a reason to do it!! Find a passion and stick to it!! Your character is not only summed up by what you do in the classroom, but on the court, or in the bazaar, or even at home!!  Be true to yourself and others!! Don't waste their time if you're doing it for the wrong reasons!! Do it because YOU want to!! LIVE LIFE PASSIONATELY AND FULL OF HEART!!!:)  That's enough for tonight!! It's bedtime!! Happy Smiling!!!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

8th Grade Farewell banquet!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:)

This is the class!!!! '014!!!!! The class that I want/will stick around until they graduate!!!!:) There's something special about your first year as a teacher and the grade that you get to teach from middle school to high school!!! You get to see the maturity take place from 8th to 9th grade!!! You get to reminisce about those fond memories of middle school when they are seniors and about to graduate!!! Most importantly there is a special bond I feel with this year's 8th grade and the future seniors of 2014!!!! There is not one single student that doesn't bring a unique characteristic to the table!! Each one of them in their own way are SUCH a pleasure to teach!!! When I first applied to Woodstock and was told the student's were great, I didn't know what to expect!! Great can mean a lot of things in a lot of different ways!!! Sadly Woodstock prepped me with the wrong word for these student's!! They're not great.......they're AMAZING!!!! I am hesitant to full out announce my plan to stay until they graduate, mainly because I am sure they hear that often from their teacher's and most of them end up leaving after their contract!!! So who am I to be saying those exact words!!! Actions speak louder than words my friends!! And until I actually am there to see my 8th graders graduate and walk down that isle and collect their diploma, they have all the right to not believe me right now!! Sadly!! But if Woodstock extends my contract, I AM HERE FOR THAT DAY!!! Once I set my mind on something it is DONE!! OVER WITH!!! You don't run marathons with a weak and undetermined mind!! Something God has blessed me with is dedication!! And I truly want to be dedicated to this class!!  However, the most AWESOME part of this whole thing is not only do I get to see 8th grade graduate, but I get to see my 9th graders (another FANTASTIC class), my 10th graders graduate (again a SPECTACULAR class) and if I'm here long enough (hopefully) I will get to see my new and upcoming 8th grade class the 7th grade class!!!!!:) I mean really it is a WIN WIN WIN situation!!! Woodstock has a part of my heart right now and I do NOT want to be in any other place!!!:) At least for another 6-7 years!!!!! There will be a time that I want to settle down and teach in the states, but for now that desire is a long, long, long ways away!!!! Thank you 8th grade for such a WONDERFUL night tonight!! I'm so proud of each and every one of you (if any of you even read this!!) this year and again it has been AMAZING teaching and getting to know you!!! This is my THANK YOU card to you!!!! '014 BABY!!!!!!! Oh p.s. you will make me feel EXTREMELY old when you graduate!! Cause I was proudly an '04 grad and that will have been 10 years ago at that time!!! NOT COOL '014!!!!!:) HAPPY SMILING EVERYONE!!! Hopefully you are doing something that you love!! If you're not, DO SOMETHING ELSE!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010


FOOT LONG!!!!!!!! GET YOUR FOOT LONG WATERMELON!!!!!!!!!!:) So today at lunch was the GREATEST LUNCH EVER!!!!!!!! We had watermelons that literally were the size of an adult's forearm!!! IT WAS AWESOME!!!!!!!!! Not only were we SUPER ecstatic about the foot long watermelons (some more than others) BUT it was the GOOFIEST, FUNNEST, MOST HILARIOUS lunch ever today!!!! There is something about foot long watermelons that make the day PERFECT and full of ENERGY!!!!!!!!!! You not only can eat your watermelon and spit out the seeds but also WAKKA WAKKA WAKKA WAKKA WAKKA Pacman it up!!!!!! That's right, watermelon skins, once cracked, make a perfect Ms. Pacman!!!!! ALSO if you eat it correctly they look like a GIANT toothbrush or comb!!!!! PLENTY OF LAUGHS!!!! It reminds me of Jr. High and my infamous sexy chicken dance with my roasted chicken breast!!!! That one goes out to all of my former 7th grade lunch homies (Eric, Jonathon, Cole, Aaron, Dan, and Philly!!!!) Great times had at lunch both past and present!!!!!! I'm telling you, you have not lived without making living objects out of your food!!! I feel bad for all those who just eat their food and go on their merry way!!! Sooooo borrrrrrrrring!!! SPICE IT UP PEOPLE!!!!!! Well that is all for tonight!! Can't believe it's June already!! HOLY SCHNIKEE!!! In 2 days it will be EXACTLY ONE MONTH UNTIL THE PAAVO NURMI MARATHON IN FINLAND!!!!!!!! YOU KNOW IT FRIENDS AND FAMILY!!!!!!!:) HAPPY SMILING TO ALL AND TO ALL HAPPY FOOT LONG WATERMELON DAY!!!!!!!!!!