This evening NC State hosted a meet among 4 teams: WVU, UNC, William & Mary and NC State. Delaney was spending the night at a friends house so I brought Macy and her adorable friend from her team to watch the meet. Naturally, I brought my camera. The lighting here is much better than at most meets I shoot so my ISO was rarely above 5000 and frequently down around 1000! That made for some nice sharp pictures but not knowing the routines made it a little harder. I also was stuck in my seat so getting the best angle wasn't possible making vault and beam difficult to isolate. I did a little of that post but they were still not great. NC State didn't have a great meet and ended up in 3rd place. WVU, however, looked amazing.
Here's what I got from the meet:
In contrast to and to make a point about yesterday's post: this is how you would normally find Floyd in our house.
Anyone who has ever met my dog, Floyd, knows that he is the worlds biggest wimp! He has been known to literally roll over when another dog comes around. When strangers come to the door, he may lift his head to see who it is but most of the time, he's snoozing in his bed and can't be bothered with any of the protective stuff. The one exception to his wimpiness is when we get out the Dust Buster. Then he is Floyd: Protector of the Universe! He will attack that thing like there is no tomorrow! We have to put him in his crate when Rocio is here so her won't attack her vacuum too! He's also a fast little bugger when he wants to be, hence the motion blur. It's a good thing he's so darn cute.
After much waiting, KC's new car arrived yesterday. He picked it up after dark so I was unable to get a sufficient picture of it until today. He's been working his butt off for several years and this is one of his rewards. It's a beauty.
I've been tired of my recipe repertoire lately so when a friend of mine posted a new recipe for hummus crusted chicken, I decided to try it. YUM! It was pretty good.
I met KC in downtown Apex for lunch today. It's a happening little place with some small town charm. This Little Free Library is one of those small town touches I appreciate about it.
We went to the Salem Street Pub, a typical pub but they have a pretty good lunch menu. As we sat there we realized it was Media Day for the Superbowl competitors so all the TVs were tuned in to some kind of coverage. I noticed this as I sat waiting for my lunch to arrive.
My question is how can anyone even ask that question? 2 years does not a dynasty make. Are they a good team? Sure! But to receive the title of dynasty, it'll take a decade or more of domination in the league. Sorry NFL Network. Stop trying to force it. I'll get off my soapbox now.
I got the dreaded phone call from school today. Macy's teacher was on the other end telling me that Macy wasn't feeling well, had her head down all through art class and was generally not herself. I got on the phone with Macy who said she didn't feel like she was going to throw up but her stomach hurt like it did over break. I asked her if she wanted to stay at school to see if it would pass or if she wanted me to come get her reminding her that if she came home she was not going to go to gymnastics tonight. She understood and decided to come home. I jumped in the car and went over to school to get her. She was pretty pitiful so I got her home, settled her on the sofa and let her rest.
By about 5, she was feeling better and regretting her decision to come home and miss practice. While I finished up some work, she started her own work out which included 45 minutes of conditioning. I did some of that with her and let me tell you, I cannot keep up with her, not even a little bit! After conditioning, she practiced her dance for the NC State exhibition in a few weeks, then she decided that she needed to work on her tumbling so she went outside in 40 degrees and did this for about 30 minutes:
Monday is laundry day. I work T, W, H so I can get stuff like laundry done on my off days without interfering with family time. I spent the majority of the day getting this unending task under control. Some weeks is worse than others and some weeks I can't devote the entire day to laundry. Those are the weeks when by Thursday, I get attacked by the dirty clothes as I go into my closet! Today was not one of those days however and the only part left to do is the socks. As I'm folding the laundry, I take all the socks out and toss them in the sock drawer which is a drawer in the end table in the living room. Sometimes it gets so full I can't close it. Today WAS one of those days. I guess with some of my "free time" tomorrow, I will have to pair them up and toss them into the girls' baskets. Of course looking at this pic, I see more of KC's and my socks than the girls'.
I know many people poo-poo family game night as some antiquated nostalgic throwback to a time everyone idealizes but no one actually wants to go back to because it was cheesy and lame etc. However, for my family, it's a wonderful way to spend an evening. The current favorite is the game of Life. It's changed a lot since I was their age. In some ways it's better and in other's it's not. It's set up so that something happens on every spin so it's a lot more engaging. The spinner works much better, the professions are a lot cooler and it actually has some things that require you to get up and move! It's always fun to do a pirouette or play air guitar as a quick break! On the down side, it's become too easy. We've been playing it since Christmas and not once has any of us needed to take on a loan. Some of the new rules are a little strange: like the having a lucky number and the way you have to stop to get married etc. and it's too hard to buy houses. You have to land on a buy a house spot, not just pass one. There are too many paydays so money is really never an object. In general though, it's still a good solid family game. We will continue to play it until we loose them indefinitely to Netflix and far cooler people (aka friends) and cherish every minute.
I was out and about today. I had my camera with me but nothing really grabbed my attention. I go back home and as I was pulling into the driveway, trying to avoid running over my children or their toys, the moon caught my eye.It was a nice clear sky and the way it was sitting right there between the 2 sweetgum branches made me happy so I came in, got my bigger lens and shot a few. I had to move around to get the right angle and a bracketed heavily since I'm not accustomed to shooting in this kind of light. I probably should have gotten my tripod out and gone for a longer exposure and a deeper DoF to see if I could have gotten both the tree and the moon in focus but it was obviously getting late and cold so I did what I could. It turns out it was way over exposed so I ended up deceasing the exposure by 1.65 and really bumping up the contrast (59). Beyond that it was a gentle curve, some increased clarity, vibrance, general saturation and blue saturation in particular. Next time there's a cool crescent moon, I'll get the tripod out.
My good friend, Rachael's daughter, Maggie (or as I call her Mags), had her first meet today. I chose the 2 pics above as a juxtaposition of how small a child can look standing by her self next to the albatross that is the beam and then a few minutes later look so grown up waiting for the floor routine to start. As always, I shot 200mm, f/2.8, 1/500 and let the ISO float. Did some cropping and editing in LR5 after.
Our gym recently started an Xcel team and the rules are so very different from the USAG compulsory rules we are used to. There's a lot of learning to be done so I'm relying on Rachael to teach me.
The meet was in Burlington which is only about an hour away. I have Friday's off and I've been shooting these girls for so many years, I wanted to make sure I had a chance to get at least one of her meets this season. After I had my PT session this morning, I headed out to Kidsport for the Think Pink Invitational. It was very different than any meet I'd ever been to before and for the life of me, I have no idea how to score it. Long story short, Mags had a fantastic meet and placed on all 4 events and in the AA. She's really becoming a team leader. Way to go Mags!
On a personal note, as I stated above, I started PT today at Dunn. Matt, my PT, afte listening to my story, doing some tests and watching me walk down the hall and run on a treadmill (no, I did not fall) agreed that it was most likely the shoes causing my knee pain. He gave me some stretches and a very simple HEP. I'm to run 2mi every other day and if I have no pain, I can bump it to 3 miles after 3 times and 4 miles after 3 times with no pain at 3 miles etc. I go back next Fri for another session. Very happy with these results.
I am a runner. I have been running since I was five. My father was a track coach and as a Daddy's girl, I took every opportunity to do anything he did. Over the summers, he would run two to three miles with me as his warm up. I adored those nights. They are some of my fondest childhood memories. From that beginning, I started my running career and ran on the Lansingburgh Varsity XC and Track teams from 7th grade through my senior year. It was how I identified myself for many years. I was never good enough to make a college team but I've continued to run recreationally off and on ever since. A few years ago, I even ran a few half marathons. In my second one, I was the 113 woman to finish. I checked that off my bucket list and now I don't feel the need to do it again.
All my life, I've been told that I over-pronate and have worn supportive shoes to protect my knees etc. I replace my shoes immediately when my knees start to ache. When I was training for my 1/2 marathons, I went to TrySports to make sure I had good shoes since I hadn't ever run those kinds of miles before. At the time, TrySports was in Crabtree Valley Mall. They watched me run and put me in Mizunos similar to these. Everything was fine and I went back when those wore out and got another pair. After that, TrySports in Crabtree closed down so when my knees started aching and it was time for new shoes, I had to look for another reputable shoe store. There is one in Chapel Hill but it's a bit far away so I went to Fleet Feet in Raleigh. They listened to my story, watched me run and were kind of surprised I was in those shoes. They felt like I was not a true over-pronator but since I'd been wearing them and they'd been working for me, they gave me the next model and away I went.
I started running in the new shoes and my knees started to hurt more and more. By the end of February, it was bad enough that I decided to give it a break for a few months. I took some time off until the spring and tried again. Again, the pain came back. I figured I was getting old and my running days were over. I dreaded getting official confirmation of that so I put off going to the doctor. Recently the running bug was biting me again and my friend Lisa told me it was probably a meniscal tear and the repair was easy. So I made an appointment with Dr. Andersen, at Cary Orthopedics. He's the doctor who fixed my ankle, KC's ankle and looked at his knee a few years back.
They took x-rays and Dr. Andersen did a few tests, all of which I remember learning but none of which I have ever done in practice or remember the names of. He poked my knee and made me jump then sat back and told me I had Plica Syndrome. I will tell you that the thought had crossed my mind. I did actually complete PT school and that included a semester and a clinical in ortho. It was not my forte to say the very least but this was something that I did remember but had discounted it because it is usually seen in teenage girls. He showed me the x-rays and my cartilage is completely fine. There is NOTHING wrong with my knees and he have me the OK to run again with some more stretching. That's right, I have the knees of a teenager! Moving forward I had 3 options: Surgery (Not quite ready for that!) Injection (Possibly) and PT (DUH! What do you think the PT is going to choose?)
Since I have been cleared to run, I went back to Fleet Feet to buy me some new shoes. I told them my story again and suggested starting over. They watched me run again and agreed with their last assessment: I do not over-pronate. I actually supinate initially and roll in but I never actually collapse into pronation. They put me into a neutral shoe for the first time I can remember! I tried on a few different styles and was surprised when they brought out Brooks because they have always been far too narrow. Then I looked at the width; it's a D! HA! Thankfully, as you can see in my picture above, I did not get the color that they show online.
I brought them home and went out for a 2 mile run. For the first time in a year, I had no pain in my knees. I'm ecstatic! I will start PT in the morning and hope he will have some more direction.
I'm a mother of 2 girls living in NC. I've dabbled in photography on and off but really this is just for fun